Politics
Wynne wants to find anti-fraud measures for insurance

Incoming Premier Kathleen Wynne speaks with media before her first caucus meeting at Queens Park.

Credits: Dave Thomas/Toronto Sun/QMI Agency

ANTONELLA ARTUSO | QMI AGENCY

TORONTO - Premier-designate Kathleen Wynne has hit the brakes on a New Democrat proposal to force insurance companies to lower auto premiums by 15%.

Wynne said she would be more interested in pursing anti-fraud measures to bring down costs.

"That will save the industry money," Wynne said, adding her government would work with insurance companies to pass on those savings to premium holders.

The 2012 Ontario Auto Insurance Anti-Fraud Task Force made a number of recommendations aimed at reducing rip-offs estimated to cost the industry between $768 million and nearly $1.6 billion a year.

Wynne committed during her leadership campaign to look at auto insurance, and believes addressing fraud is the way to go.

The premier-designate made her comments during a wide-ranging conference call with members of the multicultural media Tuesday.

NDP Leader Andrea Horwath said Monday that she would give the Financial Services Commission a mandate to reduce auto insurance rates by 15% within a year.

Government changes to accident victim payouts in 2010 reduced the financial pressure on insurance companies, but the savings were not passed on to consumers, Horwath said.

Despite this bump in the road, Wynne said she remains optimistic that she can work with the New Democrats and Progressive Conservatives to avoid an election.

Wynne said she's also hoping to make progress on the issue of extracurriculars which have largely vanished from public elementary and secondary schools in a dispute over Bill 115 and imposed teacher contracts.

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