Emergency Services

Res #: 21-09A
Number: 21
Year: 2009
Midterm: No
Expired: Yes
Responses Received: No
Departments: Saskatchewan Government Insurance (SGI)

WHEREAS the Province of Saskatchewan and SGI have made progress in the elimination of the Emergency Services Rescue Fund and having SGI become the first payer in all situations where fire suppression and rescue/extrication service providers attend accident scenes within the province; and 

WHEREAS SGI has established a rate of $625 per hour prorated after the first hour; and 

WHEREAS historically this rate has been inadequate to cover operating expenses when attending emergency calls especially in circumstances where service providers are under a collective agreement;  

BE IT RESOLVED that the Province of Saskatchewan and SGI undertake a comprehensive review of the actual costs incurred by emergency service providers when attending accident scene emergencies and revise the present rate to more accurately reflect the operational needs of the respective service providers in the province.

Response from Honourable Ken Cheveldayoff, Minister of Crown Corporations:

Effective January 1, 2009, SGI introduced a new policy to deal with fire department charges incurred as a result of a loss to a motor vehicle within the province.  This new policy, which was presented to the Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities (SARM), the Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association (SUMA), the Saskatchewan Association of Fire Chiefs (SAFC) and the Saskatchewan Volunteer Fire Fighters Association (SVFFA), was reviewed and endorsed by all groups prior to implementation by SGI.  This new policy resulted in SGI becoming the first payer for fire department charges provided for all vehicle losses, including insured and uninsured vehicles in the province.  This policy effectively eliminated the need for the Municipal Rescue Services Fund (MRSF) which existed from 1999 to 2008 to administer claims for service which were not covered by SGI .

In meetings over the years, the adequacy of the rate paid by SGI has from time to time been discussed.  SGI has requested that they would review any proposal received that documented and outlined the actual costs of the fire department.  No proposals have been received.  

For your information, and based on SGI's latest information, the rates paid in other jurisdictions are as follows:

Ontario $350/hour
Manitoba $600 – $800/hour but only for Auto Pak insured motorists
Alberta $400/hour
British Columbia $400/hour
Saskatchewan $625/hour

I again invite SUMA and/or SARM to provide a proposal to SGI, for their review of the actual costs.