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Fair Work Inspectors target Ballarat in regional Victoria

The Fair Work Ombudsman has issued a media release advising that it will audit employers in regional Victoria as part of a new campaign.

Fair Work Inspectors will target businesses located in Ballarat central business district in a range of industries, including retail, take-away food, restaurants, and accommodation, pubs and bars for a round of workplace compliance audits.

Ballarat, located west of Melbourne, is a tourist destination and tertiary education hub with a high student population, many employed in the town's retail and hospitality sectors.

More than 12,000 businesses are based in Ballarat, with almost 5000 of them considered small business operations.

Fair Work Inspectors will check employers are paying the correct minimum hourly rates, penalty rates, allowances and loadings and providing appropriate meal breaks.

Compliance with record-keeping and pay-slip obligations will also being monitored during the three-month campaign.

Big fines and expensive penalties

Employers risk penalties of up to $54,000 for each breach of the Fair Work Act 2009.

Most businesses - including small businesses - are now covered by the national Fair Work system created by the Fair Work Act 2009.

Fair Work Inspectors appointed by the Fair Work Ombudsman have the power to enter a workplace at any time during working hours to inspect records and ensure compliance. Fair Work Inspectors may issue on the spot infringement notices. They can also recommend taking matters to court.

> Learn more about fines and penalties

> Learn more about recent prosecutions for breaching workplace laws

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