Government Making Changes To Composition Of TICO Board
On Aug. 11, 2023, the Chair of the Travel Industry Council of Ontario (TICO) Board of Directors received a letter from the Minister of Public and Business Service Delivery, Kaleed Rasheed outlining five orders for the organization.
The Minister’s Orders include the following:
- Decreasing the number of Board members from 11 to 9.
- Ensuring that all Board members possess a positive orientation for proactive consumer protection initiatives.
- Ensuring no more than 34% of the members of the Board are drawn from the travel agent and travel wholesaler industry.
- Establishing a nominations committee with requirements around eligibility criteria for nominated Board members.
- Establishing an industry advisory council, comprised of members representing the interests of travel agents and travel wholesalers to report to and advise the Board.
The changes are being introduced to help enhance consumer protection; enhance accountability for the sector; present an opportunity for TICO’s Board to lead in governance best practices, mirroring the recommendations given by the Auditor General of Ontario to other Ontario regulators; and provide a forum for industry to identify issues and provide advice to TICO’s Board.
TICO’s CEO Richard Smart said: “While TICO’s existing Board structure has served the organization well for many years, this governance change brings added balance to the Board and reflects best-in-class governance practices.”
Smart observed: “This change allows for a more diverse range of voices to actively contribute to TICO’s consumer protection mandate, while still ensuring the industry has a strong voice at the table.”
Similar governance changes have been implemented at other Delegated Administrative Authorities, including the Ontario Motor Vehicle Industry Council (OMVIC), Home Construction Regulatory Authority (HCRA) and Tarion.
These orders reflect a modernized approach to board governance, which includes skills-based recruitment to ensure optimal expertise in board oversight.
The Board of Directors is responsible for providing ongoing strategic oversight and governance to TICO as it fulfills its mandate of consumer protection.
TICO is making the necessary by-law changes to implement these orders, which will be presented at TICO’s Annual General Meeting, scheduled virtually for Tues., Sept. 26, 2023 at 5 pm.
In terms of next steps, TICO will host a webinar in the coming month to provide more information about how the Minister’s Orders will be implemented and provide an opportunity for registrants and stakeholders to ask questions.
TICO indicated that it will be sharing additional information shortly.