SAN FRANCISCO — A newspaper says employees of Pacific Gas and Electric could learn this week if the utility will declare insolvency while facing billions of dollars in liability over its role in recent California wildfires. The San Francisco Chronicle reports Sunday that under a new state law, PG&E must tell its employees at least 15 days before a change of control in the company — including a bankruptcy filing. That notice may come as soon as Monday. The news was first reported by Bloomberg. PG&E is in discussions with lenders about a financing package worth up to $5 billion. It would allow the company to continue operating during Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings. State fire investigators blamed the utility's power lines for causing a number of California wildfires in October 2017. … [Read more...] about Bankruptcy possible for California utility after wildfires
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The hydroelectric holdings “contain a lot of sensitive lands and have traditionally been a low-cost portion of the generating portfolio,” Matthew Freedman, staff attorney at the Utility Reform Network, an advocacy group, told me. PG&E has proposed spinning off its hydro assets in the past. “We’d be concerned about PG&E trying to sell off those assets to an independent generating company that would try to extract maximum value, and that may end up not being a very good deal for California consumers.” … [Read more...] about With stocks in California utilities dirt-cheap, why shouldn’t the state just take them over?
Oxfordshire County Council should take more control over its roads to ensure utility companies do work at residents’ convenience, a group of councillors has called for. The performance scrutiny committee wants firms to need permission from the local authority to do work on roads – a major change from what happens at the moment.Currently companies decide when they want to carry out work and are given a notice by the council to do so. In 2017/18, 25,000 of the notices were issued.Councillors said this is a ‘passive’ approach which benefits companies more than it helps residents.Liberal Democrat councillor for Grove and Wantage, Jenny Hannaby, said: “We’d have much more control over the [companies] and how they work… if they’re not doing their work in the time permitted then we can fine them or extend work with them.“I know utilities are the bane of the public’s life, as well as ours.”Cllr Hannaby led the cross-party group, … [Read more...] about Roadworks should benefit residents more than utilities, say councillors
Protesters took over a California utility commission meeting on Thursday, loudly venting their anger at the state's largest power company over its alleged role in the state's deadliest-ever wildfire, the Camp Fire. Demonstrators solemnly read the names of 86 people killed in the blaze in November as the California Public Utilities Commission rushed through its agenda at the meeting Thursday in San Francisco, according to NBC Bay Area. Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) is facing lawsuits alleging that itimproperly maintained towers in Butte County that sparked the horrific fire. The company said in regulatory documents just after the Camp Fire in November that it may face significant liabilities related to wildfires. The raucous protest at Thursday's meeting belied a rather pro forma board action — a unanimous vote ordering commission staff to develop "criteria and a methodology" to calculate how damages that should be paid by an investor-owned utility. But protesters' … [Read more...] about Raucous protests against California utility PG&E that is facing wildfire claims
Dejanay Booth Detroit Free Press Published 10:52 AM EST Jan 10, 2019 Alcohol may have been a factor in a two-vehicle head-on crash Wednesday that lead to a utility pole being split in Bainbridge Township in southwest Michigan, authorities said. The incident happened at about 5:26 p.m. near Napier and Arent roads in the community about 10 miles west of Benton Harbor, according to a news release from the Berrien County Sheriff's Office. Law enforcement and emergency personnel responded to the crash, which involved a Nissan Sentra and GMC Sierra pickup. The agency said the driver of the Nissan crossed a center line and struck the pickup, which then crashed into a utility pole and split it in half. The driver was taken to Lakeland Hospital and treated for injuries. The Berrien County Sheriff's Office could not be reached for additional comment. The current condition of the drivers is unknown. The crash is under investigation. Read more: … [Read more...] about Utility pole split in half after head-on crash in SW Michigan