We understand that the current COVID-19 situation is rapidly changing and that this is a difficult time for our community. Please make sure to follow our COVID-19 page for all the latest updates about rate payments and how we are responding to those experiencing hardship.
For Direct Debit residents
Unfortunately we have noticed an error in the date of the direct debit deduction printed on the 1st quarter 2020/2021 rates notice. The notice states that the instalment amount would be deducted on the 18/08/20. This is incorrect. The correct date is 18/09/20. We apologise for any inconvenience.
Your rates help us deliver a wide range of services to benefit you and the wider community.
You can pay your rates:
- in full by 21 September*; or
- in four instalments (due 21 September*, 1 December, 1 March and 1 June each year)
*Given your rates notice is arriving a little later than normal due to COVID-19, we have extended the first instalment/full payment date to 21 September 2020.
If you are unable to make payments by the due date please contact us on 8408 1111. If you get in touch before the due date, we can avoid recovery action. There are payment alternatives available, but late payment penalties still apply.
See our other payment methods
Receive your rates notice by email with EZYbill
What happens with late payments
You can get rate relief - rebates and concessions
Sold your property? Sale of property - transfer advice
Council rates: your questions answered
It’s quick and easy to set up BPAY payments.
BPAY/BPAY VIEW Use Biller Code: 10330
Reference Number: You will need to have your Valuation Number available. This is shown in the Property Details box of your rates notice. Enter all characters without spaces.
You can have fortnightly or quarterly payments debited from your bank account.
- Read the Direct Debit Service Agreement before completing the Direct Debit Request Form
- Complete the Direct Debit Request Form - Quarterly Deductions or Direct Debit Request Form - Fortnightly Deductions
- Return the original form to any of the following:
- Post to City of Charles Sturt, Rates Department, PO Box 1, Woodville SA 5011
- Fax 8408 1122
- Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Over the phone
The City of Charles Sturt Civic Centre
72 Woodville Road, Woodville
8:30am to 5pm Monday to Friday (excluding public holidays)
For security reasons, cash payments are not accepted at Henley Beach, West Lakes, Hindmarsh or Findon libraries.
You can also pay in person at any Australia Post outlet.
You can pay by cheque, money order or credit card to:
City of Charles Sturt
PO Box 1
Woodville SA 5011
Cheques should be payable to the City of Charles Sturt and crossed “Not Negotiable”. Please allow 6 business days before the "Last Day To Pay" for payments sent by mail.
Receiving your rates notice electronically will make it easier and more convenient for you to manage your payments, save paper and reduce waste. You'll have your notice accessible on any electronic device (phone, tablet, laptop or desktop) and at your fingertips whenever you are ready to pay your rates; anytime, anywhere, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Depending on your internet service provider (ISP) you may find the delivery of your rates notices will go into a SPAM or junk folder. To avoid this happening or your ISP potentially deleting the email as a possible virus threat, check your email settings and whitelist email@example.com. Alternatively, if you need assistance with this contact your ISP.
Once you are registered the next quarterly rates notice will be delivered via email. After registration, paper notices will no longer be issued via postal delivery. Once you have registered all future rates notices will be available for viewing at any time in the EzyBill portal.
You can still choose to make payment via your preferred payment method or for convenience click on the ‘Online Payments’ section of the notice to pay by Credit Card on the Council website.
You will receive your quarterly notices via EzyBill. Overdue and legal demand letters will only be issued to your postal address, so please ensure you keep your details updated with Council. If your electronic notice is returned to EzyBill as undeliverable via email a paper copy will be issued to your postal address.
If you have previously registered with another Council for EzyBill, you can use the same login/signin details for your Rates with Charles Sturt.
If you are already registered for BPAYView rate notice delivery and you then register your property for the EzyBill delivery option, once the EzyBill registration has been accepted you will automatically be deregistered from BPAYView.
Owner/Ratepayer details must match with who is registering. For example, if your mother owns the property you can’t register for EzyBill on her behalf without written authorisation or a power of attorney type legal document previously being provided to Council. Alternatively they can register themselves for this service. Please note if we receive unmatched details your registration will be declined.
Please ensure the username you choose is unique. Preferably use a combination of your first and last name.
To finalise your registration you will be sent a link to activate the account from firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject EzyBill Account Activation. This link expires 4 hours from the time of issue. However, there is an option for you to request an updated activation account if you were unable to do it within that timeframe.
An initial penalty of 2% on any payment for rates that is received after the due date (applied in accordance with the Local Government Act).
A further penalty at the prescribed interest rate is added to any unpaid rates at the end of each month they continue to be unpaid. (The prescribed rate for 2020/2021 is 5.2% p.a.)
Failure to Pay
If rates remain unpaid more than 21 days after the issue of a final notice, the debt is referred to a collection agency (this process incurs additional costs to the ratepayer).
When a payment is received, the money is distributed in the following order:
- to pay any costs awarded in connection with court proceedings
- to pay any interest costs;
- to pay any fines imposed;
in payment of rates, in chronological order (starting with the oldest rate account).
Sale Of Land For Failure to Pay
The Local Government Act allows a Council to sell any property where rates have been in arrears for three years or more.
As a way to support our community through this crisis, all penalty fines and interest incurred from April 2020 to 31 October 2020 will be waived to allow ratepayers time to put in a payment arrangement tailored to their particular circumstances.
Payments not made by the 1 June 2020 and 30 September 2020 due dates for the 4th quarter and 1st quarter instalments therefore will have fines and interest penalties waived. Post 1 November 2020 normal penalties will apply.
Learn more about how we're supporting our community through COVID-19.
Rate Relief Provided By Us:
If, since 18 March 2020, you have been impacted by the COVID-19 crisis though a loss of employment and/or your business was forced to close or restrict activities due to State or Federal government restrictions, you can apply for and may be entitled to rate relief.
Please refer to our COVID-19 Hardship Policy to review the criteria for eligibility.
If the criteria is met and an agreed payment arrangement is put in place to pay three (3) of the four (4) quarterly instalments for 2020/2021 by 30 June 2021:
- the first quarter instalment of the 2020/2021 rates levied will be waived up to the capping limits; and
- for so long as the payment arrangement is complied with, all penalty interest and fines will be waived until 30 June 2021.
The amount waived of the first instalment is capped at $1k for a single rateable property and a maximum of $5k per principal ratepayer in respect of multiple rateable properties.
In addition, a principal ratepayer with multiple properties must make a separate application for each property and is limited to a maximum of 3 applications for COVID 19 hardship.
Payment in full is required by the 30 June 2021 of all rates due.
You are not eligible if you are successfully granted a rebate for 2020/21 under Local Government Act 1999 section 159 to 166 which is not relevant to COVID-19 hardship.
You are only eligible if your rates arrears as at 31 March 2020 for the property in the application was nil.
Rate Increase Capping - No Need to Apply
If our records show you are eligible, your rates account will be automatically adjusted to limit any rate increase to 12.5% of the rates paid for 2020/21.
This capping rebate is provided to reduce the impact on residential ratepayers whose rates have increased substantially this year due to rapid changes in valuations.
To be eligible, the increase in rates levied of more than 12.5 percent (excluding the Natural Resources Management Levy) cannot be as a result of:
- improvements made to the property worth more than $20,000; or
- a change to the land use of the property; or
- ownership of the rateable property has changed since 1 July 2019.
If you believe you meet the criteria for the rate capping rebate and a rebate does not appear on your rates notice, please contact us.
Note: ratepayers should appreciate that there can be a delay in valuations being adjusted for improvements made to a property by the Valuer General, spanning over financial years.
Postponement of Rates for Seniors
If you or your spouse currently hold a seniors card and your property is you or your spouse's principal place of residence you may be able to defer the amount of your rates that exceeds $500 until your property is sold. Other criteria apply. Interest will accrue on the deferred amount.
Vacant Land - Rebate for Construction (Residential)
If you are building your new family home in 2020/21 on land classed as "vacant land" on your annual rates notice for 2020/21 you may be eligible for a rate rebate. Please note is the intention of this rebate to only apply to one dwelling and to the ratepayer who will reside in Charles Sturt for at least one year and consequently where multiple dwellings are proposed on Land (with or without division of the land occurring) the rate rebate will apply to only one of the dwellings, on a pro-rata basis.
For more information and how to apply:
Applications must be received before close of business 30 June 2021.
A person wilfully making a false declaration is liable to substantial penalty.
Hardship - Arrangements for Special Circumstances
If you are experiencing difficulties meeting your rates payments and are experiencing financial hardship please contact us on 8408 1111 to arrange tailored payment plan to meet your circumstances. All arrangements are strictly confidential.
Community Purpose Land - Rebate of Rates
Rate rebates apply for land used for health and community services, religious purposes, cemeteries and educational institutions. These rebates vary from 25% - 100%.
If you believe your organisation may be eligible for a discretionary rebate you will be required to lodge an application form by 30 April each year.
State Government Concessions
If you are a holder of a pensioner concession card, veterans, low income earners, unemployed students and self funded retirees you may be eligible to receive a concession. Instead of being provided as a deduction on your rates notice against rates paid you will now get the money paid directly into your bank account and you can use the money to contribute to any of your household bills.
These payments of up to $200 may be used to offset council rates by the recipient.
To check eligibility contact the Department for Communities and Social Inclusion (DCSI) Concession hotline 1800 307 758 or at www.sa.gov.au/
The service levels and infrastructure needs of our community for 2019/20 come in at a total cost of $145.7 million. For this the City of Charles Sturt needs to levy $109.909 million in rates.
This means there is an increase of 2.0% for rates (plus property growth).
For the “typical” residential ratepayer this equates to an extra $0.56 cents per week or $28.98 per annum (1.8%).
We also have a minimum rate to ensure all ratepayers contribute to basic services at a reasonable level. In 2019/20 the minimum is increasing from $1071 to $1095 for 35% of ratepayers. This is a 2.24% increase, or an extra $24 per annum.
Rates are a type of property tax. Each ratepayer contributes based on their relative property valuation. But this valuation does not affect the total amount of rates the Council collects. We only collect the amount of money required to provide services and infrastructure in our annual budget.
As rates are a tax (like income tax and GST) the rates paid may not directly relate to the services used.
We calculate rates by multiplying the value of a property (capital value as assessed by the Valuer General), by the 'rate in the dollar'.
We calculate the 'rate in the dollar' by dividing the sum of rates required in our annul budget by the total valuation of properties in our Council's area.
There are different types of 'rates in the dollar'. They depend on the type of land use, eg residential, vacant land, commercial, etc.
In 2019/20 the average increase in rates for commercial and primary production land uses was the same as residential. This ensures a fair distribution.
Your property's capital value assessment is used to determine your rates. It comes from a Government valuation adopted by this Council.
You may object to the valuation referred to in the annual instalment notice. If you wish to object, you must lodge it in writing to the Valuer-General within 60 days of service of the annual instalment notice. State the grounds for your objection and include information to support your application.
But please note:
If you have previously received a notice under the Local Government Act 1999 referring to the valuation and informing you of a 60 day objection period, the objection period is 60 days after service of the first such notice;
You may not object to the valuation if the Valuer-General has already considered an objection by you to that valuation.
You can get them from the Office of the Valuer-General or access objection forms online.
Send your objections to the Office of the Valuer-General:
If your objection is upheld, the Valuer General will advise Council and your rates notice will be amended.
Please note: The lodgement of objections for rates does not change the due date of payment for rates.
The Regional Landscape levy (previously known as the Natural Resources Management levy (NRM)) is a State tax. Councils are required under the Landscape South Australia Act 2019 to collect the levy on all rateable properties on behalf of the State Government.
The City of Charles Sturt is operating as a revenue collector for the Green Adelaide Board. Revenue from this levy is not retained by the Council, nor do we determine how the revenue is spent.
In 2020/21 the Regional Landscape levy to be collected by Council will be $3,025,932 (3% increase on 2019/20).
The levy helps to fund the operations of regional landscape boards who have responsibility for the management of the State’s natural resources. These responsibilities include regional landscape planning, water allocation planning, community capacity building, education and compliance activities.
For further information regarding this levy, or the work the levy supports, please visit the Green Adelaide Board at www.landscape.sa.gov.au or phone 8463 3733. They can be contacted via email at email@example.com .
Council has to pay various levies and charges from the rates tax it levies.This is as well as the NRM levy of $2.9 million which Council must collect from its ratepayers on behalf of the NRM Board.
Other levies and charges Council must pay from the rates collected include:
- solid waste levy
- emergency Services levy
- planning levies
- dog and cat management fees
- library levies
- motor vehicle registrations
- legislated mandatory rebates including housing associations, schools, churches. In this case, council levies rates but must then grant a rebate
For a typical ratepayer paying $1377 in residential rates, we use around $84 to pay these charges.
There are lots of reasons why rates continue to increase.
- Infrastructure like roads, footpaths and stormwater must be maintained to an acceptable standard as outlined in Asset Management Plans.
- The community continues to want a broad range of services with an increasing quality of service.
- Rising costs of water, electricity and waste. We have responsibility for public lighting, domestic and hard refuse collection, and watering 350 hectares of open space.
- Changes in legislation by State government without any cost recovery such as the changes to the Local Nuisance Act.
- Other changes in legislation where the cost of the service is far greater than the legislated fees such as in planning and building, food inspections.
- Continued increase in mandatory rebates to supported accommodation of 75%. Over the last 10 years this has cost $1.9m in lost revenue (233% increase).
- Continued increase in EPA waste levy . In 2019/20 there was an increase of $10 per tonne from 1 July 2019 and then another $30 per tonne on 01/01/2020, a total of 40%.
- Since July 2010 the waste levy has increased from $26 per tonne to $140 per tonne. This is an increase of 438% which for council has been a total cost increase of approximately $3m.
- Increase in emergency services levy which has increased since 2007/08 by 245%.
- Staffing costs endorsed in line with the current Enterprise Bargaining Agreement. As a service industry, employee costs make up 36% of our total operating costs.
As a Council, we must manage these rising costs to ensure rates remain affordable.
We're doing this in a number of ways.
- Ongoing reviews to ensure services are efficient and effective with value for money.
- Increases in staffing must be justified through a business case for review by Council.
- Recurrent budget is developed annually using zero based budgeting to ensure cost savings are captured.
- Ongoing budget assurance work in reviewing trends in spending. Over the last two years this has resulted in $2.3 million being permanently removed from the budget.
- Lobbying against legislative changes that impose costs to Council without cost recovery.
Council rates in Australian have grown the lowest of all tax revenues from each area of Government over the past 45 years.
This is according to independent data prepared for the Local Government Association (LGA) by the SA Centre of Economic Studies (SACES).
Below are the overall average increases for Charles Sturt since 2014/15:
(please note if rate capping had been legislated our overall increase in 2019/20 is approx 1% less than the cap of 2.9% determined by ESCOSA)
No, not necessarily.
Council rates are a type of property taxation. Property value has an important part in working out how much each ratepayer pays, relative to another.
Because it's a system of taxation the rates paid may not directly relate to the services used by each ratepayer. Once Council works out its budget, we work out how much money we need to raise from rates. We then divide the total of all individual property values in the area to come up with the "rate in the dollar".
With this system, we can multiply the rate in the dollar by individual property values to get the rates bill for each property. We then know that the rates paid will equal the same amount set in the budget to be raised from rates.
Valuations do not determine the rates income of a council. They are used to divide the total rates amount among individual ratepayers.
Property values are only one part of the calculation for how much each ratepayer pays. Councils must review the rate in the dollar annually. This makes sure they only raise the budgeted rate revenue as required.
For example: a person with a property value of $450,000 will contribute relatively more than someone with a property value of $400,000.
So, the value of your property may reduce if the rate in the dollar has increased. But the amount paid in rates can still be more than what you paid in a previous year.
See our graph below for distribution of residential rates.
In 2019/20 some 10,379 residential ratepayers will pay less rates than in 2018/19 as their property valuations rose less than the average across the City.
72.1% of residential ratepayers will have a rates increase less than 2.5% with 19% a reduction in rates
For the rates tax levied, ratepayers are investing in the following services and infrastructure in their local community:
- Core services such as maintenance of parks, reserves, roads and community buildings, waste collection and recycling services, development planning and compliance, and provision of five library services throughout the City at a total operating cost (excluding depreciation) of $87.727m.
- Additional annual operating initiatives of $2.688m including economic development and initiatives to support to business, school holiday sports program and greening the City projects.
- A Capital works program investing $58.99m for roads, footpaths, traffic management initiatives, playgrounds, continuation of flood mitigation stormwater works on Port Road, the completion of the upgrade of the St Clair Recreation centre, West Beach Rockwall and SAPN street lighting replacement program.
View the Annual Business Plan and Budget 2019/20 document to view the comprehensive list of all capital and annual operating initiatives.
To get a previous copy of your rates notice you can choose one of the following options:
- Call us on 8408 1111
- Open a live chat request (Available Monday to Friday 8.30am to 5.00pm)
- Email firstname.lastname@example.org
- In person at the front counter of the Civic Centre (72 Woodville Road, Woodville)
- By mail: PO Box 1, Woodville SA 5011
You can request your rates notice to be posted or emailed out to you by the above methods. Please allow up to 5 business days to action your request (it could be longer if we need to mail it to you).
There will be a cost of $11.00 per account copy for previous financial years and no charge if it is for the current financial year.
If you are already signed up for EzyBill you can access previous rates notices on their portal for free. Please note that you can only access previous rates notices from the day you have signed up.
Please Note that these figures are based on approximate apportionments of total anticipated Operating and Capital Expenditure by activity for 2019-20 and may vary materially to actual results at year end 30 June 2020.
Want to understand the rating system and what council rates pay for?
Visit the Local Government Association website.