Two in three want state borders reopened
More than two thirds of Australians want state borders reopened by Christmas, as confidence in the public health response to coronavirus continues to increase.
States have begun to ease restrictions as Victoria's second wave is brought under control and infections in NSW slow to a trickle.
As more people endorse the public health response, support for state border restrictions to be eased continues to climb.
Some 67 per cent of respondents to a weekly survey by lobbying firm Newgate want border closures canned by Christmas, up from 63 per cent.
Victorians and NSW residents remain most supportive of open borders, while the majority of those in Western Australia want the state to remain shut.
Victoria recorded 15 new cases of coronavirus on Monday and one more death, taking the national toll to 895.
Melbourne's 14-day average, which is crucial to easing lockdown restrictions, has dropped to 10.6.
The average must be below five for restrictions to ease on October 19.
Newgate's survey continues to show a steady rise in community confidence about easing coronavirus restrictions.
There has been a significant increase in the proportion of people who agree governments are taking appropriate measures to protect people's health.
But Victorians remain least likely to agree restrictions are fair and reasonable, with discontent becoming more obvious in the past week.
Economic recovery has firmed as the number one concern of Australians, with worries about the coronavirus tracking downward to its lowest level since May, before the second wave.
A growing majority of people believe the spread of the virus will get better in coming months.
Predictions for the economy continue to improve, while concerns about job security fall.
Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has promised a jobs-focused budget on Tuesday to steer the economy out of the coronavirus-driven recession.
The budget will outline record deficits, growing debt and huge spending measures.
Personal income tax cuts, wage subsidies for young workers, investment allowances for businesses and lump sum cash payments for pensioners will all be outlined.
The climb out of recession will depend on virus numbers dropping and a vaccine being rolled out next year.
NSW has gone 10 days without a locally transmitted case of coronavirus.
The state's recent cases have been confined to returned overseas in hotel quarantine.
Control of community transmission is the key condition for NSW residents being able to enter Queensland from November 1.
People in regional Victoria could be allowed to travel to the Northern Territory from November 2 if their case numbers remain low.
But while Australia continues to recorded very few new cases of coronavirus, low test numbers are a concern.
© AAP 2020
Photo: The SA border 5kms east of Pinnaroo, South Australia. (AAP Image/Kelly Barnes)