ST JOHN’S, Antigua – More than two years after a decision was taken to move the Inland Revenue Department (IRD) to a new location, the relocation from Newgate Street to Friars Hill Road will finally take place this weekend.
“The Inland Revenue Department will be relocating to its new premises at Woods Mall next to the post office. The move will take place from Saturday and conclude on Monday.
IRD will therefore be closed to the public on Monday and regular business hours will resume on Tuesday, April 17, at 8 am,” a government communiqué read.
In February 2010, over 70 employees from the government’s tax collection agency walked off the job in protest action, citing poor working conditions that had affected the way they were able to conduct business.
The workers were given the go-ahead to go home for the day and instructed to return the day after. However, they remained off the job for a second day, claiming that they had received no satisfactory response to their health and safety concerns.
Last year, Minister of Finance Harold Lovell said the repeated delays in the renovations of the IRD’s new home was a source of embarrassment.
The building was purchased for $8.5 million in April 2010, and has been under renovation for months.
The minister revealed that the slow pace of work by the Public Works Department has resulted in it being placed in the hands of a private architect.
Meantime, the department took the opportunity to remind employers that the PAYE remittance for March 2012 is due and payable on the date of the reopening.