Winnipeg, Manitoba — Like feet at your mom’s house, the repair rate terms presented to Manitoba Public Insurance by provincial repairer associations are officially off the table after negotiations broke down on Monday.
MPI has given a 90-day notice announcing the termination of the current industry agreement with the automotive trades on repair rates.
Talks between the Automotive Trades Association of Manitoba, the Manitoba Motor Dealers Association (MMDA) and MPI were underway to renegotiate the terms of compensation for light vehicle repair work, which was to be set in place on April 15.
“We started these rate negotiations roughly last fall,” said Brian Smiley, media relations coordinator for MPI.
“We’ve now reached a point where we know that there is no moving forward. The proposal they submitted to us, in our opinion, would result, if we accepted it, a double-digit rate increase for our customers.”
The public insurer referred to the other side’s terms as “unprecedented” and claimed that they are taking positive steps through the proposal of a compensation package with increases to labour, material rates and adjustments to several estimating standards.
During the 90-day notice period, customers with outstanding claims or repairs in progress can still have their vehicles repaired at any accredited facility. MPI said it would continue to compensate repair shops for their work using rates outlined in the current agreement.
In response to reports from CTV, executive director of the MMDA Geoff Sine pointed out that collision repairers in Manitoba are the second least paid in the country and that they simply seek fair compensation.
“The offer does not account for the number of years the trade has gone without an increase. There are also ever-evolving repair procedures, training and equipment expenditures that are outpacing collision shops’ ability to invest,” said Sine.
More to come with this story as it develops.