Pacific Gas and Electric is asking for another $1.46 billion from customers to cover costs for wildfire mitigation and catastrophic events.
This comes less than one month after the utility’s request for rate increases was approved by the California Public Utilities Commission.
The backstory: In November the CPUC approved a 12.8 percent increase for PG&E, meaning customers will pay an average of $32.62 additionally every bill.
Driving the news: At the start of the month PG&E filed a motion with the CPUC to receive higher revenues to cover unreimbursed costs related to wildfire mitigation and catastrophic events.
- The utility company is seeking an interim authorization to begin raising customers’ bills as early as March, even before the CPUC approves its latest rate increase proposal.
- Combined with the annual true up of energy costs that start in January, the rate increases could increase average monthly bills by $40 to $60, The Utility Reform Network (TURN) executive director Mark Toney told The Mercury News.
- PG&E stated in a state filing that the interim relief would help the utility mitigate the extraordinary financial pressure because of high interest rates and inflation, causing expenses to rise.
What we’re watching: Toney plans to launch a campaign to convince lawmakers to establish a rate cap to prevent PG&E from increasing rates unlimitedly, he told GV Wire.
What they’re saying: “The greed of utility executives and Wall Street investors may have no limits, but customers who are falling behind on their bills need a cap to unlimited bill increases,” Toney told the Mercury News.