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February 2009 Archives

February 12, 2009

YouTube Contest

According to a News Release on the Canada Revenue Agency web site, Minister Jean-Pierre Blackburn has invited Algonquin College students to speak up about the underground economy in a YouTube video contest.

In a meeting with Algonquin College students on February 12, 2009, the Minister of National Revenue invited students to discuss the negative impact of the underground economy and encouraged them (and all Canadians) to have their say through the national Underground Economy – Not your Problem? YouTube video contest.

“The government is committed to addressing the costs and risks associated with the underground economy and protecting Canada's tax base,” said Minister Blackburn. “Those who participate in the underground economy avoid their tax responsibilities at the expense of law-abiding individuals and businesses. They're taking away funds needed for the programs and services relied on by Canadians, especially at a time when we should all be working to build our economy together.”

For the full news release please see the CRA web site at:

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February 12, 2009

Tax tip Seniors - your pension isn't the only benefit

The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) offers a full range of tax-related services for Canadian seniors. In an online Tax Tip on the CRA web site, seniors can learn about tax benefits, non-refundable tax credits, electronic services, and payment methods.

There are a number of tax measures that may be of interest to Canadian seniors. To receive the goods and services tax/harmonized sales tax (GST/HST) credit, you must apply by completing the application area on page 1 of your 2008 income tax and benefit return, even if you received the credit last year. For more information on the GST/HST credit, see Pamphlet RC4210, GST/HST Credit, or go to

To split your eligible pension income between you and your spouse or common-law partner in order to reduce the amount of taxes that you owe, both of you should complete Form T1032, Joint Election to Split Pension Income. Be sure to keep the form in your records if you file electronically, or include it with your paper return.

For more information about tax benefits for seniors, go to for more detailed information.

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February 8, 2009

financial help for first-time home buyers

In response to the federal budget release last month, the Canada Revenue Agency has prepared information explaining the budget measure to increase the amount that Canadians can borrow from their Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) from $20,000 to $25,000 as part of the first-time home buyers plan.

Following is text from the news release on the CRA web site. The full text of the news release appears at:

Canada's Government introduces financial help for first-time home buyers Ottawa, Ontario, February 2, 2009... The Honourable Jean-Pierre Blackburn, Minister of National Revenue and Minister John Baird, Canada's Minister of Infrastructure, Transportation and Communities and Member of Parliament for Ottawa West - Nepean, highlighted key initiatives from Budget 2009: Canada's Economic Action Plan that will benefit first-time home buyers.

Canada's Economic Action Plan supports the Canadian home construction and real estate industries, with a First-Time Home Buyers' tax credit that will provide up to $750 in tax relief to first-time home buyers; and an increase in the amount that they can withdraw from an RRSP to purchase a home from $20,000 to $25,000.

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February 6, 2009

CRA Tax tip: T4 filing - think green, act green

The following tax tip is available from the Canada Revenue Agency and is available in full on the CRA web site.

Did you know…

That you can file your T4 information return electronically from the convenience of your computer?

Be part of the paperless filing solution and eliminate the need to send paper copies of your T4 slips and summary to the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). File online and receive electronic confirmation that your return has been received by the CRA, and save on printing and mailing costs.

For more information, see:

Posted by Editorial Team [permalink]

February 1, 2009

Alternate Federal Budget

The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) has released Leadership for Tough Times: The Alternative Federal Budget Fiscal Stimulus Plan. The press release and link to the alternative budget are available on the CCPA web site at:

The CCPA routinely issues its own version of the federal budget as a means of offering alternative approaches to the ruling party's approach. According to the CCPA's alternative budget, this "one-year package would create 407,000 jobs, boost the economy by 3%, and help protect Canadians from the worst of a recession."

In line with recommendations by the IMF and OECD, the CCPA Plan would inject $32.9 billion (or 2.1% of GDP) into Canada’s economy. Designed "to protect Canadians who experience loss of income, as well as strengthen and build hard and soft infrastructure to address the challenges of climate change, income inequality, and aging populations" you be the judge on how it compares to the Conservative's federal budget on the Finance web site:

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