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SLO mayor signs letter urging PG&E transition to a customer-owned co-op

SLO mayor signs letter urging PG&E transitions to a customer-owned co-op
Posted at 5:19 PM, Nov 06, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-06 23:57:00-05

Several mayors throughout the state are pushing for PG&E to become a customer-owned cooperative.

San Luis Obispo Mayor Heidi Harmon was one of nearly two dozen California mayors to sign a letter asking the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) to consider their plan.

After its equipment was found to be the cause of multiple wildfires, PG&E filed for bankruptcy earlier this year. The utility's reorganization plan must be approved by the state governor and the CPUC.

The letter said that not paying shareholder dividends would save billions of dollars that could be used for system upgrades and other costs.

"A customer-owned PG&E will better focus its scarce dollars on long-neglected maintenance, repairs, and capital upgrade, and mitigating some part of the substantial upward pressure on rates," the letter reads.

In a social media post, Harmon said, "We have seen first hand how having a primary focus of shareholders puts the profits of a few over the energy access of the ratepayers. Its time to take back the utilities and create a distributed renewable resilient energy system!"