A six-month extension to the Victorian government's state of emergency powers has passed parliament after a surprise intervention by the Greens.
Victorian Greens upper house MP Samantha Ratnam returned from maternity leave to vote for the government's amended bill on Tuesday.
"I felt it was just too important that I had to be here," she told reporters as she arrived at parliament with two-month-old Malala.
Reason Party MP Fiona Patten and Animal Justice Party MP Andy Meddick also voted in favour of the six-month extension, giving the government 20 votes in the 40-member upper house.
COVID-19 UPDATE: MP calls for transparency on those 'reportedly dying' from COVID-19
The legislation passed just before 2am on Wednesday, with 20 votes in favour and 19 against.
The coalition opposed the legislation, while former Labor MP Adem Somuyrek is abstaining from voting on any bills until a corruption watchdog probe is finalised over alleged branch stacking.
Premier Daniel Andrews originally sought a 12-month extension to the state of emergency powers, which allows the chief health officer to issue public health directions.
These include stay-at-home orders, the requirement that people with the virus self-isolate and the use of mandatory face masks.
IN OTHER NEWS
Unions representing Victoria's police, doctors, nurses and paramedics all publicly called for the powers to be extended.
But MPs have been inundated with calls urging them to vote down the extension.
Ms Patten said her office has been inundated with "vile, vicious and aggressive" phone calls, social media messages and emails, some of which she's referred to the police.
"This isn't how we do politics in Australia. I have never experienced this type of aggression against me in such a personal, sometimes sexual way."
Ms Patten said the majority of people who had contacted her misunderstood the bill.
MAKING NEWS TODAY: Family, podcast to lead Grampians' tourism recovery
"This is not about a lockdown. This is about ensuring that if someone has COVID, they stay isolated," she said.
Mr Meddick and his family have also received "disgusting" abuse on social media.
"I'm not going to go into the details of that, because it just puts those people on a platform and they don't deserve it," he said.
The amended bill is specific to the COVID-19 pandemic and includes additional transparency measures, Health Minister Jenny Mikakos said.
"There has never been a more important bill before the Victorian Parliament than this," Ms Mikakos said.
It comes as Victoria recorded five coronavirus deaths and 70 new cases on Tuesday, its lowest single-day increase in cases since July 3.
The latest victims include two women in their 70s, two women in their 80s and one woman in her 90s, and take the state's toll from the virus to 570 and the national figure to 677.
Two of the five deaths occurred prior to Monday but were added to Tuesday's tally due to a change in reporting protocols for aged care facilities.
Melburnians have 12 more days left of strict stage four restrictions, including an 8pm to 5am curfew and a ban on travelling beyond five kilometres from home.
Regional Victoria is under slightly less strict stage three restrictions.
The state government on Sunday will take two separate roadmaps to reopening Melbourne and regional Victoria out of restrictions.
Regional Victoria, which has just 139 active cases, will be allowed to ease coronavirus restrictions faster.
"Given the low case numbers it will be possible for us to have different settings in regional Victoria, and a different timeline and road map compared to what will be essential in metropolitan Melbourne," the premier said.
While you're with us, you can now receive updates straight to your inbox from the Stawell Times-News. To make sure you're up-to-date with all the news from across the Northern Grampians shire, sign up here.