California regulators question PG&E's vow to improve safety

AP

Print Article

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) California regulators expressed skepticism Monday that Pacific Gas & Electric Corp.'s new leaders have enough professional experience to instill the deep corporate culture of safety they say the company has lacked.

The utility has been blamed for more than a dozen of California's most destructive wildfires in the past two years.

The five-member California Public Utilities Commission questioned veteran PG&E board member Richard Kelly about the safety qualifications of 10 new board members and incoming chief executive Bill Johnson, who starts May 1.

"It safe to say that there is still anxiety," CPUC president Michael Picker said at a commission meeting in San Francisco.

Picker and other commissioners said a majority of the board appear to have little experience with building corporate safety programs.

Kelly defended their resumes, saying it was "imperative" that PG&E board members have financial skills to help the company emerge from bankruptcy protection, which it filed for in January.

"I think we really were looking for people who would bring profound experience in compliance and safety culture," Kelly said.

Johnson was hired to run PG&E after serving six years as chief executive of the Tennessee Valley Authority, a publicly owned utility.

"We're hoping he brings the skillset needed to change the culture," Kelly said. "I'm hoping we'll see a new PG&E with him in charge."

Northstar Consulting Group, hired by the PUC, reported last month that PG&E continues to lack an overall safety strategy, a shortcoming identified two years ago.

Northstar said in the report that a new safety plan PG&E developed fell short and that it continues to be concerned that the company's divisions are adopting safety plans independent of each other.

Northstar also said PG&E managers aren't providing enough supervision of safety inspectors in the field.

Print Article

Read More Business

Indictment: Ex-CEO ignored red flags as opioid crisis raged

AP

April 23, 2019 at 3:55 pm | NEW YORK (AP) The pharmaceutical industry executive hit Tuesday with criminal charges stemming from the opioid crisis doesn't have his name on a museum wing, and his company isn't within earshot of...

Comments

Read More

AP Top Business News at 11:45 p.m. EDT

AP

April 23, 2019 at 8:50 pm | Writings on gender issues magnify scrutiny of Trump Fed pick...

Comments

Read More

Trump meets with Twitter CEO amid bias complaints

AP

April 23, 2019 at 3:21 pm | WASHINGTON (AP) President Donald Trump said he had a "great meeting" Tuesday with Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, hours after bashing the company and accusing it of not treating him well because he's a Re...

Comments

Read More

Garrett Popcorn sues ex-employee it says stole its recipes

AP

April 23, 2019 at 6:48 pm | CHICAGO (AP) The owner of a famed Chicago popcorn business has sued a former employee, accusing her of stealing thousands of files including information about its secret recipes. Garrett Popcor...

Comments

Read More

Contact Us

(509) 765-4561
PO Box 910
Moses Lake, WA 98837

©2019 Columbia Basin Herald Terms of Use Privacy Policy
X
X