On August 21, the WSIB announced that premium rates for the construction industry in 2015 will not change; however the maximum insurable earnings ceiling will be increasing by 1.3%, to $85,200. Rates Groups and their corresponding rates are noted below, with the most commonly employed rate groups for the sewer and watermain industry bolded below (rates are calculated in dollars per $100 of worker earnings).
Ã¢â‚¬Â¢ 704 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Electrical And Incidental Construction Services Ã¢â‚¬â€œ $3.69
Ã¢â‚¬Â¢ 711 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Roadbuilding And Excavating Ã¢â‚¬â€œ $5.29
Ã¢â‚¬Â¢ 723 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Industrial, Commercial & Institutional Construction Ã¢â‚¬â€œ $4.55
Ã¢â‚¬Â¢ 732 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Heavy Civil Construction Ã¢â‚¬â€œ $7.03
Ã¢â‚¬Â¢ 737 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Millwrighting and Welding Ã¢â‚¬â€œ $6.90
Ã¢â‚¬Â¢ 755 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Non-Exempt Partners and Executive Officers in Construction Ã¢â‚¬â€œ 0.21
Ã¢â‚¬Â¢ 764 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Homebuilding Ã¢â‚¬â€œ $9.10
Stagnant premium rate prices are a result of an improving WSIB financial situation, where their unfunded liability has been reduced to $10.9 billion from $14.2 billion in 2012. With a government mandate to achieve full funding by 2027 ($0 unfunded liability), the WSIB has been directing excess revenue towards its debt, where it has managed to improve its funding ratio to 64.5%, up from 57% at the beginning of 2013. Given this rapidly improving financial situation, the time is fast approaching where WSIB premium rates will need to more reasonably reflect employer performance and WSIB funding needs.
As a member of the Construction Employers Coalition, OSWCA continues to advocate that construction employers are being overtaxed and should see a reduction in premium rates commensurate with the reduction in lost-time injuries. As a general comparator, a residential construction employer in Alberta pays $1,698 to insure a worker earning $100,000. The same employer in Ontario pays 4 Ã‚Â½ times this amount to cover the same amount of risk. While the WSIBÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s financial recovery is ongoing, tax rates must be more realistically set moving forward.