The 146th Annual General Meeting of South Easthope Mutual Insurance Company was held on Friday March 2, 2018 at the Grace United Church hall in Tavistock. The 2017 Chairperson, Ken Yeoman lead attendees the proceedings of the meeting.
The membership in attendance received and approved the 2017 Auditor’s Report and Financial Statement as well as appointed auditors for the 2018 fiscal year. Glen Blair, Jeff Schultz and Paul Heinbuch were re-elected to the board to each serve three-year terms.
The following is our Chair’s Message to Members that was read at the Annual Meeting:
“2017 marked Canada’s 150th anniversary. South Easthope Mutual Insurance Company will also be celebrating its 150th in a few short years. It has grown to be a stable insurance provider which is testament to the dedication of members, directors and staff over the years. We are grateful to our generations of members for their loyalty that has made this company what it is today.
This 146th Annual Report also includes the results from our subsidiary company, SEH Computer Systems Inc. 2017 was a year of more severe weather related events. The introduction of overland flood coverage last year allowed us to help members who suffered loss from overland flooding. Bad weather also brought more auto claims. Total claims were up 31% over last year.
The number of policies increased by 4% however the increase in written premium was only 3%. The new multi-line and loyalty discounts on property policies introduced in 2017 resulted in lower premiums. Written premiums have been reduced by about the same amount as the member refunds of prior years.
Investment markets, essentially the bond markets where most of our investments are placed, did not perform well this year. Unrealized gains are down over 81% from the prior year, which impacts our investment income.
Given the reduced income for 2017, your board concluded it would not be prudent to authorize a refund of premium for 2017, as many property policies already enjoyed a premium reduction on their renewal policy.
Increased regulation continued throughout 2017 with emphasis on Risk Management, Cyber Security and Market Conduct. Work has already begun to prepare for significant accounting changes with IFRS relating to insurance contracts coming in 2021. All this takes a considerable amount of time and comes with increased administrative costs. We can report that your company remains in compliance in all these areas.
We introduced a new website and social media platforms were launched. Members can now access their policy information on the web at their convenience.
Your company supports the greater mutual insurance industry. Our CEO serves as Chair of the Canadian Association of Mutual Insurance Companies during perhaps what is the most crucial time in the association’s history. As Chair, he has met with the Canadian Council of Insurance Regulators and the federal Standing Committee on Finance, to discuss the importance and uniqueness of agricultural and mutual insurance in rural Canada.
We extended our condolences to the family of Edith Yungblut who passed away in July. Edith retired from the company in 1987 after many years of service.
I want to thank you, our members, for your continued support by insuring with South Easthope Mutual. It is my pleasure to serve on the board of your company. I also want to extend my appreciation to my board colleagues, management, staff, agents and brokers for their continued support.”
Kenneth J. Yeoman
Chair of the Board