OTTAWA – Alarmed at impending cuts to the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA), New Democrats are today calling on the Auditor General to open an investigation into the agency’s ability to crack down on tax cheats.

In a letter to the Auditor General, Official Opposition critic for National Revenue, Murray Rankin (Victoria) and MP for Marc-Aurèle-Fortin, Alain Giguère, point out their concerns that recent cutbacks at CRA will harm its ability to combat tax evasion and illegal use of tax havens.

“We are concerned that such deep cuts will undermine the Agency’s ability to fulfill its responsibility to pursue tax cheats and recover lost tax revenue,” wrote the MPs. “It would be particularly valuable to determine the marginal revenue of hiring additional staff in this and other relevant programs.”

As the Auditor General pointed out just yesterday, CRA currently has a debt of $29 Billion in uncollected taxes. The planned cuts to CRA will only exacerbate the situation. The lost revenue will have a cascading effect on government programs and ultimately, the Canadian economy.

“Our hope is that the Office of the Auditor General will vigorously investigate the aforementioned issues and that the investigation’s results will help to restore the integrity of our tax system,” concluded the MPs.