TORONTO, March 24, 2020 /CNW/ - The Canadian Taxi Association (CTA) supports Tom Rakocevic, MPP for Humber River-Black Creek, in his call to add insurance relief for the ground transportation industry to the Spring Economic Statement delivered by Finance Minister Rod Phillips on March 25th.
"On March 23rd, Ontario declared taxis an Essential Service," CTA President Marc Andre Way points out.
"Yet, it is an Essential Service which is being brought to its knees, first by skyrocketing insurance premiums and an inability to renew insurance policies, and now by COVID-19," he says.
"We thank the NDP Insurance Critic, MPP Rakocevic for bringing this issue forward during debate of the Spring Economic Statement and support him in requesting that Minister Phillips immediately extend payment terms for taxi owners' automobile insurance as a result of cash flow problems these owners are experiencing due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"The taxi industry provides transportation to persons with disabilities who would otherwise be stranded."
On March 23rd, the NDP NDP offered suggestions for the 2020 Spring Economic Statement which include instituting an auto-insurance grace period for taxis and car-sharing drivers.
"We hope there will also be consideration of a parked vehicle insurance premium credit for taxi automobile fleets as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic," says Way. "Taxi owner-operators have seen business plummet by 80 per cent or more, and they are really struggling. These adjustments could be the difference between solvency and insolvency for the licensed drivers we need to be there for seniors and others who need accessible transportation.
The CTA has also requested that Ontario amend Regulation 664 to allow the transfer of 'No Fault Accident Benefit' claims to the insurer of the 'at fault' motorist.
Taxis bear disproportionate costs for 'not at fault accident benefit' claims because many of the passengers do not drive, and therefore do not have their own automobile policy under which to make a claim.
"Ontario could simply amend this Regulation at no cost to taxpayers, and greatly assist the taxi industry," Way says. "The cost of insurance is the highest operating cost in the taxi industry."