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Premier Pumps Brakes: Alberta Premier says ‘no appetite’ for government-run auto insurance system despite potential consumer savings

Edmonton, Alberta — Alberta Premier Danielle Smith recently announced that the province will not be considering government-run public auto insurance despite a recent report suggesting hundreds in savings for drivers.

The report by Oliver Wyman and Nous Group was originally commissioned by the Alberta Treasury and Finance Board.

In the report, “Olive Wyman’s calculations (predicted) the lowest required premium occurs in a change from the current court model to a care model where the government created a public insurer that offered both bodily injury and vehicle damage coverage. The next largest anticipated savings (were) found in a system that is similar to the insurance system in Quebec, where bodily injury coverage under a care model is provided by a public insurer, but vehicle damage coverage is provided by private insurance companies.”

Oliver Wyman and Nous Group further noted that making the switch to a no-fault system could save Albertans around $730 a year on premiums for an estimated $2.1 billion in consumer savings across the province.

However, while a government survey seeking consumer feedback is ongoing and will remain open until June 26, Premier Danielle Smith said on Wednesday that the province is unlikely to switch from private to public insurance due to the start-up costs.

According to CTV News, “the sticker shock of bringing through a fully publicly-funded auto insurance program in Alberta made all the ministers’ eyes pop,” said Smith, adding that she believes “the appetite for a full Alberta-run public insurance system is very low.”

“There are lots of Albertans who are prepared to pay the extra dollars so that if they do end up–heaven forbid—in a terrible accident, they can hold someone accountable through the legal process.”

 

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