PG&E Bust: Here's What California's Elected Leaders Have to Say

(Bloomberg) -- With about 40 percent of California’s population relying on now-bankrupt PG&E Corp. and its Pacific Gas & Electric Co. utility for power and natural gas, elected officials in the most-populous U.S. state said they intend to make sure the lights stay on. Here’s what they had to say after the company’s court filing today:

Governor Gavin Newsom

"That was PG&E’s choice but it does not change my focus, which remains protecting the best interests of the people of California. My administration will continue working to ensure that Californians have access to safe, reliable and affordable service, that victims and employees are treated fairly, and that California continues to make forward progress on our climate change goals."

State Senator Bill Dodd

Dodd co-wrote legislation passed last year that allows PG&E to sell bonds backed by customer bills to pay for billions of dollars in damages from 2017 wildfires.

“Given its track record of obfuscation and mismanagement, I’m not surprised PG&E claims it can no longer meet its financial obligations. It’s extremely disappointing and underscores the need for change at PG&E in both its leadership and corporate culture. In the weeks ahead, I will be working with the governor and legislative leaders to ensure the safety, reliability and afford-ability of electric power in California.”

Assemblyman Chris Holden

Holden is chairman of the Assembly’s utilities and energy committee.

"We will help to provide direction to the Public Utilities Commission who will be representing Californian’s interests in the bankruptcy proceeding. At the same time, we must continue to address fire threats in the state as well as the safety of the utility infrastructure to protect the public and avoid this situation in the future.”

Senate President Pro Tem Toni Atkins

“My priorities are clear: protecting ratepayers, fire victims, and the reliability of electric and gas service to California’s consumers. In addition, we will be vigilant in limiting any negative impacts of PG&E’s bankruptcy on California’s clean air and climate goals.”

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra

"While this is a significant and unwelcome development, the California Department of Justice is prepared to protect the interests of the people of this great state.”

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