PG&E Will Replace Most of its Board After It Exits Bankruptcy

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(Bloomberg) -- PG&E Corp. said it would replace most of its board as part of a broad overhaul of its governance structure as the California power giant pushes to exit bankruptcy.

PG&E said only three of the 14 current directors will remain after the company exits Chapter 11 by mid-year, according to a statement Friday. The utility’s chair, Nora Mead Brownell, will be among the departing directors, the company confirmed in an e-mail.

PG&E had promised to shake-up its leadership and bring in new safety experts as part of number of reforms that were pledged to win the approval of California Governor Gavin Newsom of its reorganization plan.

Last week, PG&E said that Chief Executive Officer Bill Johnson will retire at the end of June. The company will appoint William Smith, a former AT&T executive and one of the three PG&E board members who will remain, as interim CEO until a replacement is found.

PG&E is racing to win court and regulatory approval of its turnaround proposal ahead of a state deadline of June 30 so it can participate in a state wildfire fund that will help cover liabilities from future wildfires. The company said Friday that it was on track to meet that goal.

The San Francisco-based company filed for Chapter 11 in January 2019 with an estimated $30 billion in liabilities from deadly wildfires blamed on its equipment.

PG&E announced the board shakeup as part of its first-quarter earnings release. The company said it expects costs from its bankruptcy and other wildfire-related matters to range from $2.1 billion to $2.3 billion for the year.

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