Cutting pink tape: Alberta auto insurance cards going digital

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Alberta auto insurance cards going digital
WATCH ABOVE: Alberta drivers will be getting a digital option for their auto insurance if they don't like their current insurance pink slips. Tom Vernon explains how it's part of an effort to reduce red tape. – Aug 12, 2019

Alberta drivers forever fumbling through their glove boxes for their insurance pink slip are being given a digital option.

The province says as of now insurance companies can send the information electronically for drivers to use on their mobile devices.

READ MORE: Roadblocks ahead for Alberta drivers trying to get insurance: industry professionals

Grant Hunter, associate minister for red tape reduction, says the move makes it easier for drivers and increases efficiency.

Insurance companies and drivers can still go the paper route if they wish.

There are similar programs in Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador.

READ MORE: Alberta government creates pair of industry panels to help reduce regulatory red tape

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Celyeste Power, a vice-president with the Insurance Bureau of Canada, says consumers and industry have long been asking for changes in insurance delivery.

WATCH: Alberta’s red tape reduction website sees thousands of submissions

Click to play video: 'Alberta’s red tape reduction website sees thousands of submissions'
Alberta’s red tape reduction website sees thousands of submissions

“Over 70 per cent of Albertans feel that insurance should offer more innovation and choice on how they receive their documents,” Power told a news conference Monday.

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“We welcome this announcement and are looking forward to working with the government to make Alberta’s insurance system move into the 21st century.”

Hunter said the change is part of the province’s goal to reduce redundant or otherwise unnecessary regulations.

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READ MORE: Kenney government launches website to let Albertans help decide where to cut red tape

The United Conservatives have said they aim to cut government regulations by one-third, starting in the hospital and oil and gas sectors.

Changes have started to be logged online for consumers to see, Hunter said, and the move to reduce red tape is being expanded to include Alberta’s agencies, boards and commissions.

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Even cataloguing what may need to be changed is a daunting task, Hunter said, as computer programs search legislation and documents for words such as “shall” and “must.”

Those terms, he said, may be triggers for rules that can be pruned.

“Every ministry is working hard to establish red-tape reduction initiatives …on any item that is unnecessary, duplicative or simply unneeded.”

The Opposition NDP has expressed concern that rules meant to ensure public safety may end up getting chopped.

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