Late Thursday, California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) President Marybel Batjer signed a ruling requiring Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) to establish active working groups with local governments across PG&E’s service territory, among other things. The CPUC initiated two proceedings to tackle the complex issues surrounding Investor-Owned Utilities (IOUs) and their role in wildfire prevention. RCRC was granted party status in both of these proceedings, allowing our organization to weigh in with recommendations that benefit California’s rural counties, including “improving communication and coordination with counties.”
Specifically, the ruling states:
“Within 30 days of the issuance of this ruling PG&E shall establish active working groups with tribal and local governments across PG&E’s service territory, grouped by county or by other geographical boundary as appropriate, in which the needs of tribal and local governments during, before, and after PSPS event are identified and addressed. PG&E shall also develop its 2020 de-energization protocols using feedback from the working groups. The protocols shall include, at a minimum, the provision of Community Resource Centers, communication strategies, information sharing, identification of critical facilities and access and functional needs customers, and contingency plans. PG&E shall convene the working groups at least monthly…”
RCRC supports the CPUC’s directive requiring PG&E to establish working groups with tribal and local governments to improve the provision of Community Resource Centers, communications with local governments, information sharing, identification of critical facilities and Access and Functional Needs (AFN) populations and mitigation of impacts to those constituencies. RCRC further supports the CPUC’s action requiring PG&E to provide greater detail on the actions it has taken to reduce the size and scope (and improve the implementation) of future Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) events.