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Economy PG&E: Troubled Power Utility Scrambles to Make Up for 3,000 Potentially Falsified Inspections

Discussion in 'The War Room' started by Arkain2K, Nov 2, 2019.

  1. Arkain2K Si vis pacem, para bellum

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    Meanwhile, in the Southland. <Lmaoo>

     
  2. jk7707 Silver Belt

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    They aren't messing around with the 100ft of defensible space.
     
  3. Day Drinking Purple Belt

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    Not a big fine though
     
  4. Arkain2K Si vis pacem, para bellum

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    ‘Blood money' | California politicians and campaigns received $2.1 million from bankrupt, guilty PG&E
    Author: Brandon Rittiman | March 2, 2021


    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — PG&E declared bankruptcy in 2019 because it said it didn’t have enough money to pay damages to tens of thousands of Californians for killing their loved ones, burning down their homes, and destroying their livelihoods.

    Those 83,000 people had to settle for being paid partly in shares of PG&E stock because the company said it didn't have enough cash to pay them.

    Despite this, PG&E found millions last year to spend on what was apparently a higher priority: influencing California politics.

    Politicians and campaigns took a total of $2.1 million from PG&E, according to ABC10’s analysis of state campaign finance data, both during the company’s bankruptcy and after it pleaded guilty to 85 more felonies. The company’s 2020 political donations went to current California officeholders, political party organizations, and campaigns for ballot propositions.

    “The money they’re taking is blood money,” said Phillip Binstock, whose father Julian was killed by PG&E in the Camp Fire. “They’re just as guilty as PG&E is.”

    PG&E committed 84 felony counts of manslaughter and another felony for sparking the 2018 fire that destroyed the town of Paradise, pleading guilty last June.

    A few months after those convictions, 17 current members of the California legislature benefited from PG&E donations to their races. Only two responded to ABC10’s requests for comment on this story.

    The company’s 2020 donations break down into two categories, both of which raise tough questions for PG&E and the campaigns that accepted the funds.

    In the first half of the year, when PG&E donated about a third of the money, the company was still under chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

    The rest of the donations were accepted in the months after PG&E admitted its guilt in the deadliest homicide crime ever committed by a company on U.S. soil.

    https://www.abc10.com/amp/article/n...-pge/103-4161feb9-1591-4ffc-9fda-d9c49d7173b8
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2021
  5. Snubnoze707 High Level

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    Fuck PG&E
     
  6. boingyman If can, can. If no can, no can.

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    x2
     
  7. Arkain2K Si vis pacem, para bellum

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    Wildfire victims sue former PG&E executives alleging neglect
    By MICHAEL LIEDTKE, AP Business Writer | February 24, 2021​

    [​IMG]
    In this Oct. 13, 2017, file photo, a row of chimneys stand in a neighborhood devastated by the Tubbs fire near Santa Rosa, California
    SAN RAMON, Calif. -- A trust representing more than 80,000 victims of deadly wildfires ignited by Pacific Gas and Electric’s rickety electrical grid is suing nearly two dozen of the utility’s former executives and board members, alleging they neglected their duty to ensure the equipment wouldn’t kill people.

    The complaint filed Wednesday in San Francisco Superior Court is an offshoot of a $13.5 billion settlement that PG&E reached with the wildfire victims while the utility was mired in bankruptcy from January 2019 through June last year.

    As part of that deal, PG&E granted the victims the right to go after the utility's hierarchy leading up to and during a series of wind-driven wildfires that killed more than 100 people and destroyed more than 25,000 homes and businesses in Northern California in 2017 and 2018.

    John Trotter, the trustee overseeing the $13.5 billion settlement, is now following through with an action that targets a litany of former executives and board members.

    The list includes two of PG&E's former chief executives, Anthony Earley and Geisha Williams, who were paid millions of dollars during their reigns. The company is now being run by a former Michigan utility executive, Patricia Poppe, with a board of directors that was overhauled during PG&E's bankruptcy case.

    PG&E acknowledged the lawsuit without commenting directly on the allegations. “We remain focused on reducing wildfire risk across our service area and making our electric system more resilient to the climate-driven challenges we all face in California," the company said in a statement.

    The wildfire victims' lawsuit is seeking to tap into the $200 million to $400 million in liability insurance that PG&E secured for the former executives and board members, said Frank Pitre, the lawyer handling the case. He told The Associated Press that he hopes to resolve the lawsuit within the next year to help wildfire victims still struggling to rebuild their lives.

    If the lawsuit is successful, it could help make up for a roughly $1 billion shortfall that the wildfire victims' trust faces because half of the promised settlement consisted of PG&E stock that is currently worth less than what was hoped for when the deal was struck toward the end of 2019.

    Trotter acknowledged the problem in a Jan. 26 letter to the wildfire victims — many of whom had balked at a settlement that required half of the promised $13.5 billion to come in stock in a company with a history of negligence.

    But none of the PG&E shares have been been sold by the trust so far, leaving time for the stock to rebound.

    PG&E's stock price closed at $11.41 on Wednesday. The shares have ranged from a low of $3.55 to $25.19 during the tumultuous past two years.

    The complaint against PG&E's former executives and board members seeks to tie them to acts for which the utility has already accepted responsibility.

    That includes the company pleading guilty to 84 felony counts of involuntary manslaughter for causing a 2018 wildfire that wiped out the town of Paradise, California, along with the surrounding area. PG&E was fined $4 million in that case, the maximum penalty allowed.

    “If there was ever a corporation that deserved to go to prison, it's PG&E,” Butte County Judge Michael Deems said at the time of the utility's sentencing eight months ago.

    Deems' condemnation is included in the wildfire victims' lawsuit alongside scorching criticism from U.S. District Judge William Alsup, who is overseeing PG&E's probation in another criminal case. That case stemmed from the utility's neglect of natural gas lines that blew up an entire neighborhood in a San Francisco Bay Area suburb in 2010.

    Alsup has repeatedly ripped PG&E for not doing more to maintain its power lines in recent years, including during a court hearing earlier this month cited in the victims' lawsuit.

    “PG&E has been a terror, T-E-R-R-O-R, to the people of California," Alsup said during the Feb. 3 hearing.

    Pitre said it's time to hold people hired to manage and oversee the company responsible for PG&E's recklessness. “We are talking about a massive dereliction of duty."

    https://abcnews.go.com/amp/Health/wireStory/pge-wildfire-victims-sue-management-neglect-76096832
     
    Proud American likes this.
  8. sherdogwantedtonamemekiki Paint thinner smells really good

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    So, are any of the politicians going to be getting any flak for taking the blood money? If not, this is ludicrous.
     
    superking and Proud American like this.
  9. Proud American Banned Banned

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    It’s a One party democratic fascist state. The people will be told not to care. So they will not
     
  10. ShadowRun error Platinum Member

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    This will get very little attention... which is sad...Dem MSM will cover for Dems blood money..
     
  11. Arkain2K Si vis pacem, para bellum

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    Californians are too busy talking about Texas to notice what's happening in California.
     
  12. Snubnoze707 High Level

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    The problem is the Republicans have been taking money from PG&E for years too.
     
  13. Snubnoze707 High Level

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    That's my mom's neighborhood she had to flee from that in the middle of the night with no warning, lost everything and then got fucked over by a contractor for $80k on the re-build (they screwed over 20+ people and are facing jail time). Fortunately she was able to get the house re-built finally and is back in and it's super nice. This area is no where near where you would expect a forest fire to reach. It had to hop a freeway to get over there. The wind was insane that night.
     
    Arkain2K likes this.
  14. Arkain2K Si vis pacem, para bellum

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    Lawmakers introduce bill to provide financial relief to fire victims

    By Brandon Downs | Mar 5, 2021 ​

    SACRAMENTO, Calif.
    - Assemblyman James Gallagher announced a bill that would provide financial relief to fire victims.

    The bill would exempt state taxes from payments made to victims out of PG&E’s “Fire Victim Trust.”

    AB-1249 clarifies tax exemption criteria for victims of the three most destructive fires in California, including the Camp Fire.

    The Republican assemblyman said victims deserve to receive the maximum amount of compensation from PG&E.

    The bill is co-authored by Tehama Senator Jim Nielsen and four other Republican senators.

    https://www.actionnewsnow.com/templates/AMP?contentID=573930261
     
  15. Arkain2K Si vis pacem, para bellum

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    Take away:
    - In the few areas where PG&E already been burying their power lines, they do so at the glacial speed of 70 miles a year, so this will take a while.
    - The estimated cost of $15B to $30B to bury this 10% of their lines will likely be passed on to their customers, who are already paying the highest rates in the country.


    PG&E Will Bury 10,000 Miles of Power Lines So They Don't Spark Wildfires

    July 21, 2021


    SAN RAMON, Calif. — Pacific Gas & Electric plans to bury 10,000 miles of its power lines in an effort to prevent its fraying grid from sparking wildfires when electrical equipment collides with millions of trees and other vegetation across drought-stricken California.

    The daunting project announced Wednesday aims to bury about 10% of PG&E's distribution and transmission lines at a projected cost of $15 billion to as much as $30 billion, based on how much the process currently costs. The utility believes it will find ways to keep the final bill at the lower end of those estimates. Most of the costs will likely be shouldered by PG&E customers, whose electricity rates are already among the highest in the U.S.

    PG&E stepped up its safety commitment just days after informing regulators a 70-foot pine tree that toppled on one of its power lines ignited a major fire in Butte County, the same rural area about 145 miles northeast of San Francisco where another fire sparked by its equipment in 2018 killed more than 80 people and destroyed thousands of homes.

    Since it started July 13 in a remote area of Butte County, the Dixie Fire has churned northeast through the Sierra Nevada. By Wednesday, the fire spanned a 133-square-mile area, forcing the Plumas County sheriff on Wednesday to order evacuations along the west shore of popular Lake Almanor.

    The backlash to PG&E's potential liability for the Dixie Fire prompted the company's recently hired CEO, Patricia "Patti" Poppe, to unveil the plan for underground lines several months earlier than she said she planned.

    Previous PG&E regimes have staunchly resisted plans to bury long stretches of power lines because of the massive expense involved.

    But Poppe told reporters on Wednesday that she quickly realized after she joined PG&E in January that moving lines underground is the best way to protect both the utility and the 16 million people who rely on it for power.

    "It's too expensive not to do it. Lives are on the line," Poppe told reporters.

    PG&E said only that burying the lines will take several years.

    However, getting the job done within the next decade will require a quantum leap. In the few areas where PG&E has already been burying power lines, it has been completing about 70 miles (123 kilometers) annually.

    PG&E expects to eventually be able to bury more than 1,000 miles (1,600 kilometers) of power lines annually, said its chief operating officer, Adam Wright. While Wright likened the project to the Marshall Plan that helped rebuild Europe after World War II, Poppe invoked President John F. Kennedy's 1962 pledge for the U.S. to land on the moon.

    PG&E's path to this point has been strewn with death and destruction.

    After previous leaders allowed its equipment to fall into disrepair in a apparent attempt to boost profits and management bonuses, the utility's grid was blamed for igniting a series of devastating wildfires in 2017 and 2018 that prompted the company to file for bankruptcy in 2019.

    The biggest fire, in Butte County, wiped out the entire town of Paradise and resulted in PG&E pleading guilty to 84 felony counts of involuntary manslaughter last year just weeks before it emerged from one of the most complex cases in U.S. history.

    As part of its bankruptcy, PG&E set up a $13.5 billion trust to pay victims of its past wildfires, but that fund is facing a roughly $2 billion shortfall because half its money is supposed to come from company stock that has been a market laggard.

    Since getting out of bankruptcy, PG&E also has been rebuked by California power regulators and a federal judge overseeing its criminal probation for breaking promises to reduce the dangers posed by trees near its power lines. The utility has also been charged with another round of fire-related crimes that it denies committing.

    Poppe insisted things are getting better this year under a plan that calls for PG&E to spend $1.4 billion removing more than 300,000 trees and trimming another 1.1 million. But she conceded the utility is "not making enough progress" since it's only a fraction of that 8 million trees within striking distance of its power lines.

    But she also defended PG&E's handling of the tree that may have caused the Dixie Fire and its response. The tree looked healthy and was about 40 feet (12 meters) from power lines, she said, making it a low-risk danger.

    When a PG&E troubleshooter was sent out to inspect a potential problem, he noticed the tree had fallen and may have started a fire in a treacherous area that he tried to put out before firefighters arrived.

    "His efforts can be called nothing less than heroic," Poppe said.

    https://www.npr.org/2021/07/21/1019058925/utility-bury-power-lines-wildfires-california
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2021
  16. Seano Hands of bone

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    Underground power lines seem like and brainer to me and should replace all traditional lines and poles.
     
  17. Arkain2K Si vis pacem, para bellum

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    PG&E has told regulators that a former contract worker “falsified” as many as 3,000 electrical system inspection reports over the last two years in the North Bay, Humboldt area and the Sierra foothills, NBC Bay Area’s Investigative Unit has learned. Jaxon Van Derbeken reports.

     
    MoparOrNoCar likes this.

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