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Future of settlement uncertain after Governor Newsom rejects PG&E plan

Governor Gavin Newsom rejected PG&E's Bankruptcy plan on the basis that it doesn't comply with AB 1054.

Posted: Dec 16, 2019 8:52 PM
Updated: Dec 17, 2019 8:40 AM

SACRAMENTO Calif. - Late Friday night Governor Gavin Newsom rejected PG&E's bankruptcy plan sending the company scrambling to come up with a new settlement plan.

In a five-page letter, Newsom said the bankruptcy plan fell, “woefully short of the requirements of AB 1054” also stating that, “the company has not positioned itself to provide safe reliable and affordable service to its customers.”

The rejection was on the basis the plan didn’t fall in line with assembly bill 1054, which will allow PG&E to tap into a $21 billion dollar fund for future fire compensation for victims post-2019.

PG&E rejected Governor Newsom’s assessment of the plan.

In response, PG&E spokesperson Karly Hernandez told Action News Now, “Under our settlement with individual wildfire victims, it must be determined whether our restructuring plan meets the requirements of Assembly Bill 1054. We believe it does and is the best course forward for all stakeholders. “

READ: PG&E spokesperson full statement to Action News Now

As for the settlement itself, how it will be divided is once again up in the air.

Any settlement reached in the future will most likely include a portion of funding for organizations such as CAL FIRE, Cal OES, FEMA, and other state and local agencies.

FEMA has already requested that they receive over $4 Billion in compensation for their work in all fires caused by PG&E since 2017.

Camp Fire victims have told Action News Now the whole timeline is confusing and they are frustrated the former plan doesn’t address the Camp Fire directly but instead is a lump sum payout for several PG&E caused incidents in recent years.

Attorney Doug Mudford who represents several Camp Fire victims told Action News Now, while this whole process is moving very fast for victims, “take a deep breath, a lot of people are working as hard as they can.”

He also told us that it is a time for patience and to know that it will get resolved.

Additionally, Mudford said victims need to concentrate on the Dec. 31 filing deadline for claims if they haven’t already filed.

PG&E has until Tuesday, Dec. 17, to come up with a new plan in the face of the Governor's rejection.

Governor Newsom finished his letter by stating, “PG&E’s board of director and management has a responsibility to immediately develop a feasible plan. Anything else is irresponsible, a breach of fiduciary duties, and a clear violation of public trust.”

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