Council rate concessions – How you could save money

Sometimes Government seems a little convoluted. Take this money trail for instance. The Federal Government gives the State Government money which all Australian State Governments have historically used to discount Local Government taxes (your Council rates) for those who most need it (welfare).

What is not well known is that this welfare is liberally made available. So that means you may be eligible for a state government concession of up to $190 per year on your council rates. Seniors card holders could get up to $100 off. Self funded retirees are often eligible.

But with Government money depleted and Governments at all levels in serious debt this welfare is earmarked to cease.

The big conversation you will be seeing within and between all three levels of Government is how to cope with the lack of Government money. The money trail will change. The Federal Government will not be giving the State Government the same sums of money. The State Government will need to determine how it spends this money and from all indications the Council Rate concessions will stop.

What is the flow on effect?

Councils will have two options:

  • Enforce that pensioners pay the full amount on their rates notice
  • Offer “Local Government Welfare” and have a “special pensioners rate” for pensioners

The first option will be hardest felt in communities with higher percentages of pensioners who have not budgeted for the demands of an increase in their rates notices. There will be a huge outcry and Councils will look heartless.

The second option is almost equally unpalatable because it will mean cutting services or selling assets.

But for now, these concessions are available. Its worth noting that they are not just available on your Council rates but across a range of taxes including, the Emergency Services Levy, electricity and water bills.


Are You Eligable For a Concession


You may be eligible if you own or part-own your principal place of residence on the date that the first council rates account is payable for that financial year and you are responsible for paying the rates on that property.


You have one of the following cards:

  • a Pensioner Concession Card
  • Gold Card from the Department of Veterans’ Affairs
    • Totally and Permanently Incapacitated (TPI)
    • Extreme Disablement Adjustment (EDA)
    • War Widow
  • Gold Card from the Department of Veterans’ Affairs issued to a person with 80 or more overall impairment points under the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004
  • Seniors Card
  • State Concession Card.

How to apply

Apply online or print a concessions application form. Complete the application, sign and post to (no postage stamp required):

Reply Paid 292
Adelaide SA 5001

Self-funded retiree council rate concession

Download the application form, complete and post to (no postage stamp required):

Reply Paid 292
Adelaide SA 5001

To avoid fines your council rates should be paid by due dates shown on the notice, any concession you get will be applied to your next bill.

More information about the self-funded retiree council rate concession.

Other websites

Apply for concessions online


Are you Eligible for a Concession? – brochure


Telephone the Concessions Hotline on 1800 307 758


If you have a hearing or speech impairment, please use TTY 8226 6789

Translation and Interpreting

To arrange for an interpreter or translator, if required please call Translation and Interpreter Service on 131450.

Alternative version of documents

Many documents are displayed as PDF files. If you have problems accessing or reading these documents you can ask for a copy to be made available in another format.

Phone 8413 9072

Categories: The City of Unley Council

1 reply


  1. Should the State Government Reinstate Rate Concessions for Pensioners or Not? | Lachlan Clyne, Unley Mayor

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