June 8: PG&E Proposes to Reduce Expected Customer Rate Increases through Federal Tax Savings

Release Date: March 30, 2018
Contact: PG&E External Communications (415) 973-5930

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. — Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) today filed several ratemaking requests with the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC).

PG&E is taking action to pass along approximately $450 million in annual tax savings to its customers. As a first step, today PG&E made three separate filings requesting to pass along approximately $325 million per year in federal tax savings from the federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act for 2018 and 2019. PG&E has proposed to the CPUC that the benefits of the federal tax savings be used to offset expected rate increases.

Also today, the company filed its 2018 Catastrophic Events Memorandum Account (CEMA) application requesting cost recovery of $183 million for safely restoring power for fire and storm declared emergencies from the middle of 2016 through early 2017. The 2018 CEMA filing also includes recorded costs of $405 million for work to prune, cut back or remove dead or dying trees in 2016 and 2017 resulting from years of drought conditions and associated bark beetle infestation, as well as a forecast of $555 million for additional tree mortality and fire mitigation work anticipated in 2018 and 2019.

“We’ve committed to making sure that the changes to the federal tax law benefit our customers. PG&E has proposed that the savings from the federal tax law changes be used to offset currently approved or anticipated rate increases to stabilize customers’ rates and bills,” said Robert Kenney, PG&E vice president of Regulatory Affairs.

The catastrophic events filing includes wildfires in three counties in 2016, and a series of strong storms throughout the service area from December 2016 to February 2017. In all, atmospheric river and extreme wind storms caused power outages impacting more than 2.5 million PG&E customers and damaged or destroyed nearly 17,000 pieces of the PG&E electric system including poles, wires, transformers and more. The filing is unrelated to the October 2017 Northern California wildfires.

In the past five years, weather impacting PG&E’s service area has been record-setting and extreme. The effects of climate change and weather-driven events on the company’s electric and gas infrastructure have been more significant and costly to repair.