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C23/2003 2004 ISSUE OF PENSIONER CONCESSION CARDS (PCCs)

Document

DATE OF ISSUE:  4 SEPTEMBER 2003

2004 ISSUE OF PENSIONER CONCESSION CARDS (PCCs)

Purpose of Instruction

This Departmental Instruction provides information on:

the format and issuing of the 2004 PCCs;

procedures for applying for replacement travel vouchers; and

arrangements for the ongoing daily issuing of PCCs.

Jeanette Ricketts

BRANCH HEAD

INCOME SUPPORT

         September 2003


Overview of this year's exercise

Background

The PCC is issued by the Commonwealth Government to all income support recipients to prove eligibility for a range of Commonwealth and State/Territory benefits and concessions.  DVA is responsible for issuing the PCC to DVA clients (including Centrelink Age Pensioners being paid by DVA).

The PCC is issued annually either through a bulk issue or through individual daily issue for clients who become eligible.

The following table provides a summary timetable of key dates in this year's PCC process.

This Event

Is scheduled to occur

Data Extract and Download

6-7  September

Bulk Printing of PCCs

9 September – 30 September

Lodgement with Australia Post

Progressively from 15- 30 September

What has changed
  • The postal address of up to 4 lines (at 38 characters each line) will appear  in uppercase on the carrier.
  • The residential address of up to 3 lines (at 30 characters each line) will appear in mixed upper and lower case on the card.
  • The return journey WA free trip voucher has been replaced with two single journey vouchers.
  • Information about the State/Territory specific concessions has been deleted and the carriers are now reasonably generic.  Font size has been increased for easier reading.
  • The State Office Return Address will be in upper and lower case.
  • The pension payday fridge magnet calendar will be distributed with the PCCs instead of the Vetaffairs.

What remains the same
  • The pensioner's name will be constructed as follows: forename, 2nd initial, 3rd initial (where applicable) and surname (all in upper case) up to 37 characters.
  • The partner's name will be constructed as follows: forename, 2nd initial, 3rd initial (where applicable) and surname (in upper and lower case) up to 37 characters.
  •        Dependent children's first name (truncated to 9 characters if more than 3 children) and file number will appear in upper and lower case.
  •        Victoria will issue replacement vouchers on behalf of their State transport Authority throughout the year.
  •        South Australia will issue replacement vouchers on behalf of their State transport Authority throughout the year.
  •        Blind clients will have a hole punched in the top right hand corner of the card and the word “BLIND” printed at the top of the card.
  •        PCC Summary Report will be produced on CD-ROM.

Concession Information Sheet

A State specific “Concessions Information” sheet will be inserted during the bulk printing for VIC, SA, TAS and WA married carriers.  This is in order to provide information that is unable to fit onto the carrier due to the number of vouchers these States require.

Cross Reference Cases

Where there is a cross reference for a person, the 2004 PCC bulk issue will be issued in the payment number.

Partners on PCCs

The PCC program will include the following in order to comply with current FaCS policy regarding the issue of Centrelink PCCs:

Where both members of a couple are in receipt of an income support payment, they will be cross-listed as dependants on one another's cards.

If spouse/defacto of a veteran is not eligible or payable, but is present in the assessment, the spouse/defacto is added as a dependant to the veterans' card (blind veterans included).

Veterans who are not in payment (and therefore will not receive a PCC), will appear as a dependant on the PCC of their blinded service pension partner.

The maximum number of children that will be listed on a PCC is six.  If there are more than six dependent children in the assessment, an additional card will be issued listing the veteran and remaining children.

Production of PCCs

Card Production

The printing of approximately 272,550 PCCs for 2004 will commence on Tuesday, 9 September 2003, following the extract of client data on the weekend of 6 - 7 September 2003.

The 2004 PCC will be personalised, enveloped and despatched by the mailing house – Security Mailing Services in Sydney.  Lodgement with Australia Post will commence on 15 September 2003 and is expected to be completed by Tuesday, 30 September 2003.

Card Numbers

The approximate numbers for each State/Territory are as follows:

State/Territory

No. of PCCs

New South Wales

91,420

Victoria

61,060

Queensland

56,910

South Australia

25,590

Western Australia

24,640

Tasmania

10,045

NT

      580

ACT

2,305

TOTAL

272,550

2004 PCC Stock

For the 2004 bulk PCC issue, there will be 2 different carriers for:

  • couples (to be used in the bulk issue only); and
  • singles (blind and special register go on single carriers).

The pre-printed format of the card for both singles and couples cards will be the same as the 2003 card.

Carrier Layout

The 2004 carrier layout for single pensioners remains the same as the layout for the 2003 carrier, with the vouchers printed at the bottom of the carrier.

The 2004 carrier layout for couples will incorporate 2 cards positioned at the bottom edge of an A4 carrier and the appropriate number of vouchers positioned where they best fit on the carrier and depending for which State the PCC is issued.

For couples' PCC units, the left card and left column of vouchers will be personalised with the client's details - the right side card and vouchers being used for the partner details.

Blind Pensioners – Special PCCs

The word 'BLIND' will be printed in 14 point lettering on the top centre of the 2004 PCC for blind pensioners.  The PCC for blind pensioners issued during the bulk exercise will have a hole punched in the top right hand corner of the card.

Special Register PCCs

Special Register and Special Register Blind clients' PCCs will be enveloped and forwarded directly to each State Office Contact for checking prior to dispatch to the Special Register addresses.

Fridge Magnet Calendar

The State specific magnetic refrigerator calendar will be included with the bulk issue of PCCs.  States will be issued with a supply of 2004 calenders to cater for new clients.

Vouchers

The number of vouchers attached to the carriers will vary with each State/Territory and will be separated from the carrier with perforations.  The vouchers will include the pensioner's name and entitlement number, and in the case of Tasmania will also contain the pensioner's residential address and Date of Grant.

The vouchers provide fields for personal details to be lasered.  The information required to be lasered onto vouchers are as follows:

For this State

And this Card/Carrier

This information will be inserted onto the Voucher

NSW

NIL

NIL

ACT

NIL

NIL

NT

NIL

NIL

VIC

Single (1 voucher and 1 coupon)

Name

Entitlement Number

VIC

Couple (2 vouchers and 2 coupons)

Names

Entitlement Numbers

QLD

NIL

NIL

QLD

NIL

NIL

SA

Single (2 vouchers)

Name

Entitlement Number

SA

Couples (4 vouchers)

Names

Entitlement Numbers

WA

Single (2 vouchers)

Name

Entitlement Number

WA

Couples (4 vouchers)

Names

Entitlement Numbers

TAS

Single (4 vouchers)

Name

Address

Date of Grant

Entitlement Number

No. of Dependants

TAS

Couple (8 vouchers)

Names

Addresses

Date of Grant

Entitlement Numbers

No. of Dependants

Bulk Issue Reports

Reports

State offices will be provided with the following listings of cases after the bulk extract:

  • a list of clients who did not receive a PCC and the reason for not receiving a PCC, eg clients with an overseas address;
  • Special Register clients;
  • Blind Cases – listing cases of blind pensioners who receive a PCC; and
  • Blind and Special Register Cases – listing cases where the pensioner is blind and a Special Register Case.

The reports will automatically print in the State Office following the data extraction processing on the weekend of  6 – 7 September 2003.

CD-ROM

At the completion of the exercise the mailing house will provide each State office with a summary report on CD-ROM that lists the PCC recipients from the bulk issue.  The CD-ROM is expected to be dispatched to the nominated State contact officers in October.

The CD-ROM files (*.pdf format) can be accessed via Acrobat Reader 5.0 which can be found on the DVA LAN.  From the Start up menu select Departmental/Applications/Internet Tools/Acrobat Reader 5.0.

Daily Issuing of PCC Cards and Vouchers

New and replacement PCC's

The procedures for the ongoing issuing of new and replacement PCCs remain the same as in other years i.e., new and replacement issues of PCCs are to be extracted by batch processing each night for printing daily on the local printers located in each State Office.

The last automatic daily extract for any issue/reissue of the 2003 PCCs will be on Friday, 6 September 2003.

Formatting and any re-alignment of local printers to accommodate the 2004 PCC will be addressed by IMU.  Please advise Kevin Richardson on

(02) 6289 6330 as soon as possible if you experience any difficulties in printing replacement or new grant PCCs.

Manual Card Prints

Please be aware that after the live run (weekend of 6 – 7 September 2003) there will be a short period of time until the 2004 PCCs become valid i.e., 1 October 2003.  State Offices are to manually print the 2003 PCCs until the 2004 card is distributed.

Manual Voucher Issue

From Monday, 8 September 2003, 2004 PCC stock is to be used for daily issues.  However, any new grant or transfer-in between 8 September and 31 December 2003 will still require manually issued 2003 travel vouchers for this period.

Replacement PCC's – voided Vouchers

Voucher personalisation should be suppressed for all replacement or re-issued cards for clients.  The card will be personalised and issued on the carrier, however, the vouchers will remain attached to the carrier but will be voided with XXXX's.  This includes clients who:

  • have had a 2004 DVA PCC processed with vouchers, then lost and regained eligibility during the course of the year; or
  • Centrelink Transfer In cases, as they would have already received their PCC and vouchers from Centrelink.

Voucher Replacement

For most States, neither Centrelink nor DVA will have the facility to issue replacement vouchers.  The PCC carriers display a warning stating that DVA cannot issue replacement vouchers.  Where State rail authorities have provided them, contacts and procedures for applying for replacement vouchers are listed at attachment A of this instruction.

All cardholders are entitled to only one issue of vouchers for their residential State each calendar year except where a cardholder transfers to another State.  New grants of income support pension must not be provided with concession vouchers if they have received a PCC with vouchers in the same calendar year.

Replacement vouchers in
SA & VIC

As in previous years South Australian Rail has given the South Australian State Office authority to issue replacement vouchers on their behalf.  The South Australian carrier includes contact numbers for pensioners to contact for replacements.

The Victorian Rail Authority has given the Victorian State Office authority to issue replacement vouchers on their behalf.  The Victorian carrier includes contact numbers for pensioners to contact for replacements.

Blind Pensioners

When issuing a blind pensioner a PCC in the daily issue, the PCC stock provided and current issuing procedures should apply.  The reprint program will enable the word 'BLIND' to be printed on the PCC.

Normal PCC stock should be used for blind pensioners.

New PCC Stock

All State Offices should have received stock of 2004 PCCs and fridge magnet calendars during the first week in September.

Report Problems to National Office

Staff are reminded that it is important that they keep a log of problems identified following the bulk issue of PCCs.  Every endeavour will be made to rectify any identified problems.

Contact Officer

The contact officer for this exercise is Kerry-Anne Rowe on 02 6289 6663.


ATTACHMENT A

Arrangements for providing replacement Travel Vouchers for
Pensioner Concession Cardholders in 200
4

VIC

The Victorian Rail Authority continue to give the DVA Victorian State Office authority to issue replacement vouchers on their behalf for an indefinite period.

SA

SA Rail continue to give the DVA South Australian State Office authority to issue replacement vouchers on their behalf indefinitely

WA

(08) 9326 2222 – WAGR

              For a period up until the 31st January 2004, WAGR have given authority to our WA State Office to issue replacement vouchers on their behalf.

After this date people can phone WAGR to apply for replacement vouchers.

Note: WAGR may charge for replacement vouchers.