Ontario government promises meaningful auto insurance reforms

Published: August 30, 2018

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Since sweeping to power in June’s provincial elections, the Progressive Conservatives have been quiet on auto insurance reforms, despite the subject being a key vote hunting ground during campaigns.

While still not going into specifics, Ontario’s new finance minister says the government will work with the private insurance industry to reduce insurance premiums. However, the conservatives will not make the mistakes of the previous Liberal government and make promises that are simply “photo opportunity”.

Ontario has attempted to tackle rising premiums over the last decade, but over the last two years rates have increased. The new government says it wants to form a clear plans before making any announcements.

“We will continue to work with the industry and the regulators to do everything we can to lower insurance rates in a responsible manner,” Finance Minister Vic Fedeli said Monday during Question Period at Queen’s Park in Toronto.

The Liberal government headed by then Premier Kathleen Wynne promised in 2013 to reduce auto insurance premiums by 15 per cent before August 2015.

That date passed with slight improvement, but nowhere near the pledge made by the government. A further three years on and signs of 15 per cent ever being attainable are hard to come by. Accusations that the initial pledge was merely a vote grab appear more damning with each passing year.

Speaking this week, Fedeli doubled down on criticism of that deal, calling it “absolutely nothing more than a photo op.”