Diane Lebouthillier, minister of National Revenue, was in Yellowknife on Monday to announce the opening of a new Northern Service Centre (NSC) in the city.
The centre in Yellowknife – along with others in Whitehorse and Iqaluit – aim to give Northerners better access to tax services.
“The NSCs are a key component of the Northern Service Improvement Strategy developed to ensure that territorial residents, including Indigenous peoples and businesses, are able to participate fully in the Canadian tax and benefit system,” a news release from the CRA states.
Each centre will employ three full-time employees, two of whom will support outreach and Community Volunteer Income Tax Program (CVITP) clinics, where volunteers file income tax returns free for people with modest incomes.
The other employee will work as a liaison officer and conduct on-site business visits and seminars about doing business in the North.
“Staff at the service centres will be on-site year-round,” Lebouthillier said.
In addition to working at the centres in the territorial capitals, “employees will travel extensively throughout the territories to provide these services to individuals and businesses in communities,” the news release states.
The new service centres accompany the roll out of new toll-free phone lines specifically for Northerners and their unique tax needs.
In fall 2018 the CRA held consultations across Canada to hear from small and medium businesses and accountants. The federal department used that feedback to inform these changes, said Lebouthillier.
The NSC in Yellowknife is located in the Greenstone Building on Franklin Avenue. It will be open from 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. and can be accessed through the Service Canada lobby on the first floor.