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January 4, 2013

IBC applauds Ontario’s increased municipal infrastructure support

TORONTO

The Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) has applauded the Ontario government’s announcement that it is increasing support for critical road, bridge, water and wastewater projects under its Municipal Infrastructure Strategy.

Up to $90 million will be available over the next three years for critical infrastructure projects for communities across Ontario that are having difficulties funding those projects.

“Our infrastructure will continue to face challenges due to the effects and impact of severe weather,” said Ralph Palumbo, the bureau’s vice-president, Ontario.

“The Canadian insurance industry has seen substantial increases in property claims costs, partly as a result of infrastructure that was never designed to cope with the weather trends we are seeing today, and we fully support sustained investments that help build resilient communities and a secure economy.”

IBC has also sponsored extensive research into severe weather. Earlier this year -“Telling the Weather Story” — a research paper from Dr. Gordon McBean - looked at the impact weather could have in Canada in the future.

The report is intended to help Canadians better understand severe weather as a factor in the increasing damages to personal and commercial properties that are being seen in many parts of Canada.

“It is imperative we continue to see momentum on this file and that we work together — governments, industry, communities and individuals - to recognize the weather risks we are facing and to enter discussions about how to reduce their effects on our lives and the communities we live in,” Palumbo said.

The Insurance Bureau of Canada is the national industry association representing Canada’s private home, car and business insurers. Its member companies represent 90 per cent of the property and casualty (P&C) insurance market in Canada.

The P&C insurance industry employs more than 114,000 Canadians, pays more than $7 billion in taxes to the federal, provincial and municipal governments. It has a total premium base of $40 billion.

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