Local Government Act 1993 No 30
Historical version for 7 July 2003 to 17 July 2003 (accessed 22 December 2014 at 21:36) Current version

Division 1 Concessions for pensioners

575   Reductions for eligible pensioners

(1)  If an eligible pensioner is the person solely liable, or a person jointly liable with one or more other persons, for a rate or charge levied on land on which a dwelling is situated, the rate or charge is, on application to the council and on production to the council of evidence sufficient to enable it to calculate the amount of the reduction, to be reduced in accordance with this section.
(2)  Subject to subsection (3), the amount by which a rate or charge is required to be reduced is:
(a)  if the person making the application is, on the date on which the rate or charge is levied, an eligible pensioner who is solely liable or jointly liable with one or more jointly eligible occupiers but with no other person for the rate or charge—one-half of the rate or charge, or
(b)  if the person making the application is, on the date on which the rate or charge is levied, an eligible pensioner who is jointly liable with one other person who is not a jointly eligible occupier, or with two or more other persons, any of whom is not a jointly eligible occupier for the rate or charge—an amount that bears to one-half of the rate or charge the same proportion as the part of that rate or charge for which, as between all persons liable to pay the rate or charge, the applicant and any jointly eligible occupier are liable bears to the whole of that rate or charge.
(3)  The total amount by which:
(a)  all ordinary rates and charges for domestic waste management services levied on any land for the same year are reduced is not to exceed $250, and
(b)  all water supply special rates or charges so levied are reduced is not to exceed $87.50, and
(c)  all sewerage special rates or charges so levied are reduced is not to exceed $87.50.

However, if subsection (2) (b) applies, the maximum amounts specified in this subsection are to be proportionately reduced in line with the proportion applicable under subsection (2) (b).

(4)  If a person becomes an eligible pensioner after the day on which a rate or charge is made and levied, the person is entitled to a reduction under this section of the rate or charge proportionate to the number of full quarters remaining after the day on which the person becomes an eligible pensioner in the year for which the rate or charge is made.
(5)  A person who is an eligible pensioner or a jointly eligible occupier is, to the extent to which any rate or charge that, but for this section, would be payable by the person is reduced under this section, discharged from liability as between that person and any other person jointly liable to pay the rate or charge.

576   Application of this Division to postponed rates

If the payment of part of a rate which is required to be reduced by section 575 is postponed under Division 2, the amount of the rate for the purposes of this Division is taken to be the amount of that part of the rate that is not postponed under Division 2.

577   Extension of concession to avoid hardship

(1)  If a council considers it proper to do so to avoid hardship, the council may, by order, direct that:
(a)  a person specified in the order:
(i)  who occupies a dwelling as his or her sole or principal place of living, which dwelling is the sole or principal place of living of an eligible pensioner, and
(ii)  who is jointly liable with that eligible pensioner or with that eligible pensioner and one or more other persons in respect of the land on which that dwelling is situated, and
(iii)  in respect of whom a reduction of rates or charges would not, if that person were solely liable in respect of that land, be required to be made under this Division, or
(b)  any person belonging to a class of persons specified in the order, being persons referred to in paragraph (a),
is, on and from the effective date of the order, taken, for the purposes of this Division, to be or to have been an eligible pensioner.
(2)  If a council considers it proper to do so to avoid hardship, the council may, by order, direct that:
(a)  an eligible pensioner specified in the order who, although not liable, or although liable jointly with one or more other persons, to do so, has, for such period as, in the opinion of the council, warrants the making of an order under this section in respect of that person, paid the whole of the rates or charges for the land on which that dwelling is situated or is, in the opinion of the council, likely to pay the whole of the rates or charges in circumstances that in the opinion of the council warrant the making of an order under this subsection, or
(b)  any person belonging to a class of persons specified in the order being persons referred to in paragraph (a),
is, on and from the effective date of the order, taken, for the purposes of this Division, to be or to have been the person solely liable in respect of the land on which the dwelling is situated.
(3)  An order under this section has effect according to its tenor.

578   When does an order under sec 577 take effect?

(1)  An order under section 577 takes effect (or is taken to take effect) on such date as is specified in the order (the effective date), being a date in the year commencing on 1 July during which the order is made, whether or not that date is before or after the date on which the order is made.
(2)  If a council makes an order under section 577 that is taken to take effect on a date that is before the date of the making of the order, the council may, in that order or in a subsequent order, give such directions as to refunding any rates or charges that have been paid and the charging of interest on overdue rates or charges and as to such other matters as the council thinks fit.
(3)  An order under subsection (2) has effect according to its tenor.

579   When and how is an application made for the purposes of this Division?

(1)  An application under this Division is to be made within the time and in the manner prescribed by the regulations.
(2)  If no such regulations are in force, the application is to be made within the time and in the manner fixed by resolution of the council and, if an application is made for an order referred to in section 577, as the council may require.
(3)  If, pursuant to an application made under this Division, a reduced rate or charge applies, the council may, if the eligibility of the applicant for a reduction in a subsequent rate or charge is verified by the council as prescribed by the regulations, reduce the subsequent rate or charge without requiring a further application under this Division.

580   Variation by regulation of amounts of reductions

The amount by which a rate or charge is to be reduced in accordance with this Division may be varied from time to time by the regulations.

581   Reimbursement of councils by Parliament

The Minister is required, out of money provided by Parliament, to pay to the council an amount equal to half that written off by the council under this Division because of section 575.

582   Abandonment of pensioners rates and charges

A council may waive or reduce rates, charges and interest due by any person prescribed by the regulations who is in receipt of a pension, benefit or allowance under the Social Security Act 1991 of the Commonwealth.

583   Writing off of pensioners rates and charges

(1)  A council is to write off amounts of rates, charges and interest which are reduced or waived under this Division.
(2)  A council may not take proceedings to recover an amount so written off unless the amount has been written off because of a wilfully false statement in an application under this Division or except as provided by section 584.

584   Ending of concession

(1)  If circumstances occur that cause a person’s entitlement to a reduction, under this Division, of rates or charges to cease, the entitlement is taken to cease on the last day of the quarterly instalment period during which those circumstances occur.
(2)  If, at the time the entitlement is taken to cease, the rates or charges for the whole year, reduced under this Division, have been paid in full, the portion of the payment that is proportionate to the quarterly instalment periods remaining after that time is to be credited to the rates or charges payable in respect of that part of the year remaining after that time.
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