On February 3, 2020, Senator Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco) introduced Senate Bill 917 (“SB 917”), which would establish a new process for a potential government takeover of Pacific Gas and Electric Company (“PG&E”).
SB 917 would reestablish the California Consumer Energy and Conservation Financing Authority and authorize it to acquire, by eminent domain, the assets or ownership of certain electric or gas utilities that meet its criteria, including PG&E. Local publicly owned energy utilities may elect to join in the eminent domain action brought by the Authority and ...
On November 27, 2019, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Dennis Montali issued a Memorandum Decision on Inverse Condemnation (“Memorandum Decision”) in PG&E Corporation and Pacific Gas & Electric’s (together, “PG&E”) Chapter 11 Bankruptcy proceeding in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of California (Case No. 19-30088). PG&E challenged the application of the doctrine of inverse condemnation in connection with the 2015, 2017, and 2018 California wildfires. In the Memorandum Decision, Judge Montali ruled against PG&E and instead concluded that the doctrine ...
One of the oddities of California's public utility system is that private companies own and operate many of them, yet they behave very much like governmental entities, especially when it comes to eminent domain. Major examples include Southern California Edison and Pacific Gas & Electric ("PG&E"); both are private companies functioning as public utilities, delivering electricity to their constituents, and both are overseen by the Public Utilities Commission.
Occasionally, an actual governmental entity will seek to replace the private utility company. Such is the case ...
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