New legislation to prevent BC government from taking ICBC profits

Mar 2 2020, 6:28 pm

The BC government will soon introduce legislation to prevent any governmental body in the province from using “excess optional insurance capital” generated by ICBC.

“For many years, the old government treated ICBC like an ATM,” said BC Attorney General David Eby in a statement.

Eby claims the previous government “raided” $1.2 billion from the insurance corporation between 2009 and 2016 and “seriously eroded” the crown corporation’s financial stability, resulting in higher premiums.

The proposed legislation will be introduced in the coming days, and Eby says the changes will result in those funds staying with ICBC when it does make a profit.

“This legislation to keep ICBC surpluses out of government coffers is another step our government is taking to restore ICBC to a sustainable financial position so that insurance rates can stay affordable,” said Eby.

“Drivers can have confidence in knowing that their auto-insurance premiums are going toward benefiting drivers.”

According to the 2020 BC Budget, ICBC will finally see a surplus of $86 million in 2020/21, growing to $148 million in 2021/22 and $191 million in 2022/23.

The last time ICBC was in the black was in 2015/16, when it saw a surplus of $131 million.

In February, the provincial government announced it would also introduce legislation to lower ICBC premiums by approximately 20%, an average of $400 in savings per driver.

With files from Kenneth Chan and Vincent Plana.