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Sask. WCB plans rate hike

REGINA, Sask. -- The Saskatchewan Workers' Compensation Board (WCB) is following in Alberta's footsteps and plannin...

REGINA, Sask. — The Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB) is following in Alberta’s footsteps and planning a premium increase averaging 2.4 per cent next year.

While that pales in comparison to Alberta’s 32 per cent hike, WCB rates will still be higher in Saskatchewan.

The board cites rising claim costs and investment losses as the reasons for the premium hike.

The total cost for employers would jump to an average of $1.75 per $100 paid to each employee, a hike of about five cents.

Mike Carr, chairman of the labour committee for the Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce warns that a more efficient health care system would get employees back on the job sooner.

"Injured workers are standing in line and that’s driving up costs," says Carr. "The longer someone’s on compensation, the more money it costs employers."

Some employers are also calling on WCB to re-examine the way it determines rates. Rather than looking at a company’s past five years, some say a more accurate depiction could be determined by taking a closer look at long-term trends.

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