Dubbo restaurants, cafes and clubs have one week to prepare for the same new COVID rules as pubs after the NSW government announced further restrictions on Friday.
The government has confirmed it would tighten restrictions around "higher risk" activities as the pandemic enters a new phase of community transmission.
Compliance measures introduced to pubs will be extended to restaurants, bars, cafés and clubs.
- limiting group bookings to a maximum of 10 people
- mandatory COVID-Safe plans and registration as a COVID-Safe business and
- a digital record must be created within 24 hours
NSW recorded eight new cases of coronavirus to 8pm Thursday night.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the tightening was to reduce the risk of uncontrollable break-outs and ensure NSW stays open for business.
"Unfortunately we must live with COVID-19 and the way it has changed our lives," Ms Berejiklian said.
"These rules will give businesses and the community a degree of certainty into the foreseeable future, and help NSW avoid uncontrolled virus spread."
Deputy Premier John Barilaro said the NSW Government continues to work with business and industry to ensure they operate in a COVID-Safe way.
"These measures apply across the state and will also work to protect residents in rural and regional NSW," Mr Barilaro said.
Health Minister Brad Hazzard said the changes are based on advice received from the Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant.
"We do not want to see community transmission getting to a stage where it is out of control. These restrictions target large gatherings which are high risk settings for transmission of the virus," Mr Hazzard said.
"We need people to do the right thing: follow the rules; stay home if unwell and get tested, even with the most minimal of symptoms; always maintain physical distancing when out and about; and ensure good hand hygiene."
Registration of COVID safety plans is compulsory for all pubs from Friday, and Dubbo MP Dugald Saunders reports the hoteliers he's spoken to have "certainly been very compliant in doing" so.
Tighter restrictions - including cutting the size of group bookings to 10 people and ramping up sign-in - had been driven by the industry, "looking to make sure employees and owners and the public are all protected", he said.
"It was the Australian Hotels Association of NSW that really talked at the very highest levels to say they wanted to be part of solutions...," Mr Saunders said.
Pubs have become a key industry in COVID safety this week as the number of cases linked by authorities to the Casula Hotel outbreak in Sydney edges closer to 40.
But last week the government warned businesses across all sectors they must follow COVID safety warnings or risk a penalty of up to $55,000.
More than 117,500 COVID safety plans had been downloaded across the state in less than a month.
But only 10,500 had completed the next step of registering the plans.
A mere 39 businesses in the Dubbo region had registered by the end of last week, figures provided by the Department of Customer Service showed.
Despite that, Mr Saunders said many businesses were probably operating under a COVID-safe plan, but hadn't actually registered the plan.
He said those that had not registered "would be some of our smaller businesses", but he was "sure they were doing the right thing".
"Every shop I go into has a plan on the front door and sanitiser and registrations where needed," he said.
Every shop I go into has a plan on the front door and sanitiser and registrations where needed.Dubbo MP Dugald Saunders
"So I guess the registration of them is important if you are a large business and compulsory if you're a pub, but otherwise it's about just doing the right thing."
He said recent months had been about awareness and "building our capabilities within the health system".
"Unfortunately in some cases people have tended to think the past couple of months have shown that we're all free and easy... but it's actually the reverse," he said.
"The past few months have been about preparing for what will be a change in the way we interact for some time into the future. Many people are doing the right thing every single day but there are still a few who don't seem to worry about that."