On April 18, 2019, my bill entitled “The Lower Automobile Insurance Rates Act” was debated at Queen’s Park and defeated by the Conservative Government.
Driving in Ontario means one must purchase auto insurance. The most frustrating is that while Ontario drivers have the least accidents per capita, we pay some of the most expensive premiums in the country. This is especially true for our community here, Humber River Black Creek.
I have fought this issue for many years, I hosted town halls, wrote articles and conducted research that demonstrated that the roads of our community do not have the highest rate of collisions or vehicular crime.
In late 2018, I hosted a local town hall at St. Basil-the-Great College School to bring details on an NDP Private Member’s Bill that would have treated all GTA postal codes as one when setting insurance rates. This bill would have lowered auto insurance rates in our community, but was defeated by the Conservative Government.
My bill, the Lower Automobile Insurance Rates Act, was crafted in consultation with Dr. Fred Lazar of the Schulich School of Business, an economist and expert on auto insurance. His widely publicized research demonstrated that Ontarians were overpaying insurance companies by an estimated $1 billion a year.
This bill would have reduced the excessive profit margin auto insurance companies seek when setting premiums, reduced their operating costs (which includes their marketing, commercials and legal fees when fighting against paying out claims), and increased transparency, especially in the area of setting rates based on postal code. On April 3, I hosted a packed town hall update meeting at Driftwood Community Centre to share the details of my bill, and received strong support from those present.
Unfortunately, the Conservative Government voted down this bill with one Conservative Member of Provincial Parliament going as far to say, “What’s wrong with racking up profits?”
The issue of auto insurance reform is not going away, and I will continue to keep up the pressure because Ontario’s drivers deserve respect.