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Created in 1945, Saskatchewan Government Insurance (SGI) is a provincial Crown corporation that has been developed over the years into two linked operations.

The Saskatchewan Auto Fund is the province’s compulsory public auto insurance program, operating the driver’s licensing and vehicle registration system. The Auto Fund is financially self-sustaining, operating on a break-even basis over time. The Saskatchewan Auto Fund claims that it does not receive money from, nor pay dividends to, the government.

SGI CANADA sells property and casualty insurance on properties such as homes, farms, businesses and automobile insurance in seven Canadianmarker provinces. It operates as SGI CANADA in Saskatchewanmarker, SGI CANADA Insurance Services Ltd. in Manitobamarker and Albertamarker, the Coachman Insurance Company in Ontariomarker and as a major partner in the Insurance Company of Prince Edward Island in Nova Scotiamarker, New Brunswickmarker and Prince Edward Islandmarker.

History

SGI Head Office in downtown Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
was created by the first avowedly socialist government in North America elected in 1944, the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (later renamed New Democratic Party). Under Premier Tommy Douglas, the government began to involve itself in many sectors of the economy, including insurance. The rationale was put forth that Saskatchewanmarker residents were being taken advantage of by companies owned outside the province who set rates too high. Also, at least 90 per cent of the insurance in the province was written by companies established in Eastern Canada. Thus the institution of a publicly-owned insurance company was justified by the government on both philosophical and economic grounds.

Working out of the Saskatchewan Legislative Buildingmarker, Michael Allore, SGI’s first president, sold the first policy – Fire Policy Number 1 – to Minister O.W. Valleau on May 1st, 1945 and appointed its first broker, Oscar Sawby of Maple Creekmarker, on May 17th. By the end of 1945, SGI had 60 employees and a small network of private, independent insurance brokers located across the province selling insurance on behalf of the corporation.

The introduction of a state-run automobile insurance was controversial. For the first few years of its existence, other provinces refused to recognize SGI policies as legitimate. One result of such non-recognition was that SGI-insured drivers involved in an accident in Manitobamarker were either detained or required to post a bond because Manitoban authorities essentially considered them to be "uninsured" drivers.

History of SGI Presidents
# President Took position Left position
1 Michael Allore 1945 1953
2 Herbert Hammond 1953 1965
3 Jim Dutton 1965 1972
4 John Green 1973 1980
5 Murray Wallace 1981 1982
6 Don Black 1983 1985
7 Alex Wilde 1985 1991
8 Bill Heidt 1992 1994
9 John Wright 1995 1997
10 Larry Fogg 1997 2004
11 Jon Schubert 2004 2008
12 Earl Cameron 2008 Present


Corporate governance

SGI and SGI CANADA are governed by The Saskatchewan Government Insurance Act, 1980, and The Automobile Accident Insurance Act, and are subject to the provisions of The Crown Corporations Act, 1993, which gives the Crown Investments Corporation of Saskatchewan (CIC), the holding company for Saskatchewan’s commercial Crown corporations, the broad authority to set the direction of the Corporation.

Where required by legislation or policy directive, SGI submits performance management and investment decisions for review and approval by CIC and the provincial cabinet (government). Through its Chair, who is an outside director, the SGI Board of Directors is accountable to the Minister Responsible for SGI. The Minister functions as a link between the Corporation and CIC and cabinet, as well as the provincial legislature.

Board of Directors

SGI’s Board of Directors is responsible for setting direction, monitoring and reporting achievement, and analyzing, evaluating and taking corrective action for the corporation. The Board is responsible for the stewardship of the corporation in general terms. In meeting this responsibility, the Board works with management to develop and approve the corporation’s strategic plan, operating goals, annual budget and business plans. It participates in identifying business risk and overseeing the implementation of appropriate systems to achieve a balance between the risks incurred and potential returns.

SGI’s Board of Directors is appointed by the Lieutenant Governor in Council. The Board consists of ten external directors. Both the Chair and Vice-Chair of the Board are external directors.

Structure and functions

SGI employs approximately 1,700 people and works with a network of almost 300 independent insurance brokers and about 450 motor licence issuers in Saskatchewan, as well as numerous brokers in Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia.

In October 2008, SGI was named one of "Canada's Top 100 Employers" by Mediacorp Canada Inc., and was featured in Maclean's newsmagazine. Later that month, SGI was named one of Saskatchewan's Top Employers, which was announced by the Saskatoon StarPhoenix and Regina Leader-Post newspapers.

SGI's head office is in downtown Reginamarker, Saskatchewanmarker. It also operates 20 claims centres in 13 Saskatchewan communities, has a branch office in Winnipegmarker, and five salvage offices (auto wrecker, used parts).

See also



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