BRITISH COLUMBIA

BC Liberals Using ICBC As Cash Cow, Says Consumer Group

04/11/2013 11:14 EDT | Updated 06/11/2013 05:12 EDT
VANCOUVER - A consumers group is accusing the B.C. Liberal government of ignoring the public good while siphoning cash from the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia.

The B.C. branch of the Consumers' Association of Canada has released a report criticizing successive Liberal administrations for treating the public auto insurer as a cash cow.

Association president Bruce Cran says drivers have been overcharged for basic and optional vehicle insurance over the last decade, and the Liberals drained $677 million from ICBC profits in just the last 36-months.

Cran estimates the transfer of profits will balloon to $1.2 billion by 2015, while premiums have stayed high and payments to injury victims have not been boosted in 25 years.

The association has issued a report containing 15 recommendations it believes will fix the problem.

Recommendations include retaining any ICBC surplus within the corporation for the benefit of policy holders, and switching from a revenue-driven mandate to a broader consumer focus, offering more opportunities to encourage all road-users to cut risks and reduce insurance costs.

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