News & Resources

09.04.19

Economist: PG&E plan is a ‘bailout’

CalMatters

An economic analysis funded by hedge funds that hold $10 billion in PG&E bonds says creditors, customers and taxpayers would shoulder costs if the bankrupt utility is able to tap a $20 billion bond to pay for its wildfire liabilities…

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09.03.19

PG&E, SoCal Edison and SDG&E Push to Boost Shareholder Profit

KQED News

Critics argue that the CPUC shouldn’t agree to the utilities’ proposals because of how AB 1054 weakens the standard for holding the companies accountable when their equipment causes fires.

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09.03.19

An urgent plea to Sacramento: Don’t bail out PG&E

CalMatters

PG&E’s hedge fund-backed plan will harm our wildfire victims, our ratepayers, and our taxpayers. I am imploring our elected representatives in Sacramento to peer through this smokescreen and see this plan for what it truly is: a threat to the safety and security of all Californians.

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08.30.19

Powerful labor coalition opposes PG&E bonds proposal

Politico

A tax revenue-focused coalition of powerful unions is opposing a plan that would help Pacific Gas & Electric borrow billions to pay wildfire victims and exit bankruptcy.

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08.30.19

Editorial: PG&E’s awful persistence

San Francisco Chronicle

After destroying a Peninsula neighborhood and an entire Sierra Nevada town, being declared a felon and probation violator, and going bust for the second time in as many decades, is it possible that PG&E has learned nothing?

In a word, yes.

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08.30.19

PG&E wanted to give top execs $16 million in bonuses. Here’s what the judge said

Sacramento Bee

Bankruptcy Judge Dennis Montali said that, in light of the billions in wildfire claims and other problems the utility is facing, the executives shouldn’t need extra incentives to improve Pacific Gas & Electric Co.’s performance on safety and other issues.

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08.30.19

Judge denies plan to pay PG&E executives millions in bonuses

San Francisco Chronicle

U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge Dennis Montali on Friday denied a motion by Pacific Gas & Electric Co. to pay top executives a targeted $11 million in bonuses, saying the utility had not shown how the executives’ work related to safety goals.

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08.29.19

The Truth About Compensating Wildfire Victims

The PG&E bailout will not pay victims faster (Fact Sheet)

PG&E and its hedge fund shareholders are misleading wildfire victims and their advocates by suggesting that Bailout Bonds will compensate victims more quickly than other approaches.

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08.26.19

PG&E Bills Could Go Up Over Next Few Years

KCBS Radio

KCBS Radio, KPIX-5, and Chronicle Insider Phil Matier speaks on if wildfire risk is the reason behind this possible increase to monthly bills.

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08.26.19

PG&E Wants To Gradually Add $30 Per Month To The Average Residential Bill

San Francisco Chronicle

Lawmakers are not done grappling with PG&E rates. The company returned to the Legislature this month seeking authorization to take on as much as $20 billion in tax-exempt debt to help compensate fire victims and exit bankruptcy.

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08.22.19

PG&E Power Line That Sparked Camp Fire Was Inspected Weeks Earlier

Wall Street Journal

PG&E Corp. conducted an unusual inspection of the power line that sparked the deadliest wildfire in California history just weeks before it failed, a step the utility has said it normally takes only when it suspects a potential safety problem.

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08.22.19

How much could PG&E’s rates rise? What you need to know

CalMatters

On top of that, PG&E wants to raise the guaranteed rate of return for capital investments that it gets under California law from 10.25% to 12%. It had sought a return as high as 16% in April. PG&E is arguing that it needs to offer investors bigger profits to offset the financial risks of liability in major wildfires.

This request would add an additional $4.12 a month to the average residential bill. Combined, the increases would be $293 a year.

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08.22.19

PG&E Investors’ Rift With Creditors Spills Into Sacramento

Bloomberg

The measure would permit the issuance of as much as $20 billion in tax-free, state bonds, borrowed against the company’s future profits, according to the text of a measure submitted to the California Senate. Chief Executive Officer Bill Johnson met with key lawmakers Wednesday in Sacramento to make the company’s pitch.

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08.21.19

PG&E makes its play, while President Trump goes after California

CalMatters

Tall order: With a mere three and a half weeks left before the Legislature adjourns for the year, no legislation could be considered without Senate President Pro Tem Toni Atkins and Speaker Anthony Rendon agreeing to waive rules. Legislators have little appetiteto cast votes that could be viewed as a bailout of PG&E.

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08.21.19

Reject Bailout Bonds for PG&E

Setting the Record Straight (Fact Sheet)

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08.21.19

PG&E CEO asks lawmakers to approve new debt for bankruptcy exit plan

San Francisco Chronicle

Michael Boccadoro, executive director of the energy consumer group, said the bond plan is a bad idea that would primarily benefit PG&E’s equity owners who want to increase the value of their stock.

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08.14.19

PG&E failed to trim ‘numerous trees’ near power lines in work to reduce fire risk, report says

San Francisco Chronicle

Pacific Gas and Electric Co. is failing to identify and trim thousands of trees near power lines that could pose dangers in wildfire areas and has deficiencies in record keeping and inspector training, a court-appointed monitor said in a report [which stated] “Not only is PG&E falling short of its (enhanced vegetation management goals) for the year, but the quality of the completed work is questionable.”

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08.13.19

PG&E Makes Final Push to Stay in Charge of Chapter 11

Wall Street Journal

At one point at Tuesday’s hearing, PG&E’s lawyer described the company as an “honest broker” of the interests of its creditors, provoking laughter in the courtroom.

If Judge Montali opens the door to competing chapter 11 plans, PG&E can still propose its own version of a restructuring, and can hope to draw support from those entitled to vote. The crucial votes will come from people with claims for death, injury or damage because of the fires that swept through California in 2017 and 2018.

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08.09.19

PG&E bankruptcy judge questions $11 million payment plan for top executives

San Francisco Chronicle

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Montali told a PG&E attorney that he took issue with the company’s argument that the payments were necessary to “appropriately incentivize” 12 executives. He said the leaders should be motivated to perform well by virtue of their positions at the bankrupt company, which is responsible for wildfires that killed dozens of people and incinerated thousands of homes.

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08.05.19

California Public Utilities Commission to hold public hearings in connection to PG&E rate increase

ABC News

PG&E is proposing the rate increase to “meet precautionary measures to further reduce wildfire risks, including taking additional steps to harden infrastructure and increase vegetation management.”

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07.23.19

Why hedge funds are fighting for control of PG&E — and what it means for you

San Francisco Chronicle

…Three hedge funds that have invested in PG&E already stand to reap large profits if the company’s shares — which closed Monday at $17.65 — continue trading around their current prices or higher.

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07.18.19

Hostile takeover of PG&E? Billion-dollar hedge funds duel over bankrupt utility

Sacramento Bee

Bondholders are lenders, while stockholders actually own the company. The group competing with the bondholders consists of three hedge funds that own a combined 10 percent of PG&E’s stock — Abrams Capital, Knighthead Capital and Redwood Capital. They have become influential players in the company’s operations. In April they played a big role in installing Bill Johnson, the former head of the Tennessee Valley Authority, as chief executive of PG&E. Their stock is worth just under $1 billion.

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07.12.19

PG&E May Face New Calls to Let Others Craft a Recovery Plan

Bloomberg

California Governor Gavin Newsom said in an interview on Thursday that he doesn’t support PG&E’s proposal to issue tax-exempt bonds at this point.

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07.10.19

PG&E Knew for Years Its Lines Could Spark Wildfires, and Didn’t Fix Them

Wall Street Journal

PG&E Corp. knew for years that hundreds of miles of high-voltage power lines could fail and spark fires, yet it repeatedly failed to perform the necessary upgrades… “No matter how you look at it, PG&E has a lot of work to do,” [Elizaveta Malashenko, the safety and enforcement chief for the California Public Utilities Commission] said.

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06.27.19

PG&E Needs New Money, Not New Obligations

Bloomberg

By relying on further securitization, the PG&E plan puts the bulk of the burden onto ratepayers. It’s hard to see why the court would favor a scheme encumbering PG&E’s future revenues in order to protect existing shareholders over a plan that simply injects $18 billion of new equity.

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05.15.19

‘Incredulous’: Newsom pushes PG&E to move faster in bankruptcy case

San Francisco Chronicle

“PG&E has done little to instill confidence that it appreciates the urgency of resolving wildfire claims or that it is developing with due dispatch a viable business plan that will allow PG&E to provide safe, reliable, and affordable power to the people of Northern California,” Newsom’s draft filing said.

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