We are an independent agency that has been given the power to carry out our work through legislation.

The British Columbia Utilities Commission (BCUC) is primarily governed by the Utilities Commission Act and follows sections of the Clean Energy Act, Administrative Tribunals Act, Insurance Corporation Act, and Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. The BCUC also administers BC’s Fuel Price Transparency Act.

As an independent regulator, we have the authority to use discretion when carrying out our work.

When reviewing applications, the BCUC exercises this authority to consider Intervener evidence, submissions, Letters of Comment, and government policy, as long it is within the BCUC’s mandate.

Government Involvement

However, the BC government can participate in BCUC proceedings, establish new regulations, or provide direction that the BCUC must follow.

Participating in Proceedings

The BC government can intervene or submit a Letter of Comment in applications before the BCUC to put forward a particular viewpoint. Submissions could include a request that the BCUC consider a particular policy objective in a proceeding, for example.

Establishing Regulations

Regulations address the details and practical applications of the law. They contain specific guidelines, definitions, and details, and have the force of law. The legislation that governs the BCUC defines who (e.g. BC Cabinet or a Minister) can make new regulations or change existing regulations.

Providing Direction

Section 3(2) of the UCA allows the Lieutenant Governor in Council (i.e. BC Cabinet) to give directions instructing the BCUC on how to exercise its powers, perform its duties, or refrain from doing either, under the UCA. These directions are provided through an Order in Council (OIC), which directs the BCUC to take action or not take action on a specific task and can include a variety of directions.

View Government Actions

The table below includes all directions the BCUC has received from the BC government. These can be searched by the following types:

Regulations

Or change in regulation or legislation.

Inquiries

To explore public policy issues that require technical expertise and public input, issued under Section 5 of the UCA. The Order in Council (OIC) may contain terms of reference that define the scope and require that the BCUC hold public hearings and report its findings and recommendations to the BC government.

Exemptions

To exempt certain projects, organizations, expenditures, or programs from the BCUC’s review, which can be issued as an OIC or a Ministerial Order (MO).

Applications

To review only certain aspects of an application, minimize the scope of a hearing, or follow certain procedure to meet public policy objectives.


Entity Year Category Description Corresponding Documents Proceeding Page
Insurance Corporation of British Columbia 2018 Direction The BC government by OIC 458 directed ICBC to apply to the BCUC for specified Basic insurance rate design changes to improve fairness in BC’s insurance system such that lower-risk drivers are recognized for their safe driving behaviors and higher-risk driver pay more for their fair share. In addition, the new rate design is designed to be revenue-neutral and will not increase or reduce the overall amount of Basic premiums ICBC needs to collect. Insurance Corporation of British Columbia 2018 Basic Insurance Rate Design Application
Insurance Corporation of British Columbia 2018 Direction The BC government by OIC 459 amended Special Direction IC2 to the BCUC to require that the BCUC regulate and fix rates using the factors, criteria and guidelines set out in OIC 458. Insurance Corporation of British Columbia 2018 Basic Insurance Rate Design Application
Insurance Corporation of British Columbia 2018 Regulation The BC government by OIC 460 amended the Insurance (Vehicle) Regulation, effective September 19, 2019 by adding a section in respect of premiums triggered by accidents involving unlisted drivers, amongst other amendments.
Insurance Corporation of British Columbia 2018 Regulation The BC Government by OIC 595 amended certain sections of the Insurance (Vehicle) Regulation effective November 9, 2018 and others effective April 1, 2019, and established the Minor Injury Regulation, effective April 1, 2019.
Insurance Corporation of British Columbia 2018 Direction The BC government by OIC 723 amended Special Direction IC2 to the BCUC to require that the BCUC fix rates that allow ICBC to pay for the vehicle licensing, driver licensing and other services costs under the agreement entitled “Service Agreement Addendum Changes in Costs and Services to March 31, 2018” between ICBC and the government dated November 2018. OIC 723 also directed the BCUC to fix rates that allow ICBC to make payments under the agreements entitled “Traffic and Road Safety Law Enforcement Funding Memorandum of Understanding” and “Extension and Amendment to Traffic and Road Safety Law Enforcement Funding Memorandum of Understanding” between ICBC and the government dated April 1, 2017 and November 1, 2018, respectively. ICBC 2019 Revenue Requirements Application
Insurance Corporation of British Columbia 2018 Direction The BC government by OIC 171 amended Special Direction IC2 to the BCUC to require that the BCUC fix rates that allow ICBC to make payments under the agreement entitled “Extension and Amendment to Traffic and Road Safety Law Enforcement Funding Memorandum of Understanding” between ICBC and the government dated April 1, 2018.
Insurance Corporation of British Columbia 2018 Direction The BC government by OIC 084 directed that ICBC will work with the government to implement the Rate Affordability Action Plan (RAAP) to return ICBC to stable financial footing and increase affordability of insurance rates. The RAAP project includes initiatives in the following four areas: product reform, rate design, road safety, and cost effectiveness. To do so, OIC 084 directed ICBC to fund costs associated with the Rate Affordability Action Plan (RAAP) entirely from Optional insurance and to not seek recovery of any portion of these Optional-funded RAAP costs in Basic insurance rates.
Insurance Corporation of British Columbia 2018 Direction The BC Government by OIC 073 directed ICBC to apply to the BCUC to not implement the changes to the Claim-Rated Scale that would otherwise take effect on May 6, 2018 pursuant to BCUC Order G-35-17 and OIC 106.
Insurance Corporation of British Columbia 2018 Direction The BC government by OIC 074 directed the BCUC to approve ICBC’s application made in accordance with OIC 073 in respect of its claim-rated scale.
Insurance Corporation of British Columbia 2018 Direction The BC government by OIC 024 directed ICBC to apply to the BCUC for changes in rates so that convictions for the use of an electronic device while driving are included in the driver risk premium payable by a person, effective March 1, 2018.
Insurance Corporation of British Columbia 2018 Direction The BC government by OIC 025 directed the BCUC to approve ICBC’s application made in accordance with OIC 025 in respect of changes to rates in connection with convictions for the use of an electronic device while driving.
Public Utilities 2018 Regulation The BC government by OIC 199 amended sections 1 and 2 of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction (Clean Energy) Regulation by adjusting the amount of expenditures allowed on a station and on administration and marketing.

Our Role

Learn about how we regulate BC’s energy utilities, ICBC basic auto insurance, common carrier pipelines, and the reliability of the electrical transmission grid.

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