The Generals - Spring/Summer 2014 - (Page 32)

GOVERNMENT RELATIONS REPORT By David Frame General contractors are leaders in Health and Safety. 32 B y the time you receive this edition of The Generals, the Ontario legislature will be in full session and in run-up to an important budget presentation. Either the government will use it to frame its agenda for the year or its defeat will lead us to a spring election. Whatever the outcome, OGCA is very active on your behalf, assuring that your interests are addressed. I'm not going to speculate on the outcome of the political theatre we will experience this spring. Our job is to make it not matter which party forms government, but to put us in a position of strength to move forward, regardless of the outcome. This issue focuses on workplace health and safety since it's a reflection of the value we have for our employees and our industry. Operating a safe business is not only the right thing to do but it is also good business. It communicates to your workforce that you value their safety and well-being. It reduces your cost of WSIB and exposure to charges under the OH&S Act. It builds the case for OGCA to tell the government that, given the opportunity and proper incentives, OGCA members will perform and do the right thing. With our partners in the Construction Employers Coalition, we have developed an open and productive relationship with former WSIB Chair Steve Mahoney and now Elizabeth Witmer. This issue features an interview with WSIB Chair Witmer. With more than 22 years' experience as a member of the legislature, including a cabinet minister in many of the most demanding portfolios including Deputy Premier, she brings both experience and credibility to the job. She is always interested in listening and even if she doesn't agree, she will work to find the right solution. In her first two years on the job, the WSIB has made great strides to controlling the cost of claims and reducing the unfunded liability. OGCA's counsel with Steve Mahoney, Elizabeth Witmer and other senior WSIB officials View this issue online at has helped them manage a difficult challenge and assures that the needs of the construction industry and general contractors are always understood. Our credibility must be earned and it starts with our commitment to excellence in health and safety. OGCA has five strategic goals and objectives. They are the reason why we exist and are a reflection of our values as an organization. The second goal is safety, specifically "promote safety excellence among members and within the industry." This long-standing commitment to safety has generated great value for the industry and our members. Fifteen years ago, OGCA was the first of a group of associations who volunteered for the Safety Group program developed by the WSIB. At its height, we had over 140 members involved. Over the years, participating members earned almost $10 million in rebates for completing the requirements and reducing accident rates. The program was so successful, it drove down the Construction ICI rate group price and OGCA members reduced both lost time and no lost time accidents to a rate less than 30% of the industry rate. A great achievement! In the last ten years, OGCA members have cut their LTI frequency by more than half down to .38. The construction ICI rate group has made even greater improvements, taking a 2.23 LTI frequency down to .98. What is even more impressive is that the group that was formerly mid-pack in performance for the construction industry is now the best performer, surpassing General contractors are now the safest in the industry and members of OGCA are the safest.

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Generals - Spring/Summer 2014

Chairman’s Message
President’s Message
Member Milestones
Government Relations Report
Index to Advertisers
Partnering: The Deliberate Creation of Culture that Supports Collaboration
75th AGM and Conference – Scottsdale, Arizona
2014 Conference: Las Vegas
OGCA Affinity Program
OGCA 75th Anniversary Gala
The Winds of Change Help Transform the WSIB
COR Designation Provides Safety to Construction Workers and Buyers
Thinking, Working, Growing: Ledcor Group
Bill C-45: Ten Years Later
Workshield Health and Safety Solutions Inc. Formed to Meet the Requirements of New Legislation (297/13)

The Generals - Spring/Summer 2014