By Karen Brainard
California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) will hold public participation hearings on San Diego Gas & Electric’s wildfire recovery cost plan on April 5 in San Diego.
Diane Conklin, spokesperson for the Mussey Grade Road Alliance, attended the commission’s meeting in San Francisco on Feb. 23 and said Commissioner Timothy Alan Simon ordered the public hearing.
A spokesperson for the CPUC said two hearings will be held on April 5, one at 2 p.m. and another at 6 p.m. The hearings will be held in Al Bahr Shriners Center, 5440 Kearny Mesa Road.
Conklin, who had been pushing for a hearing, said SDG&E’s application to the CPUC to establish a balancing account for wildfire recovery costs will lead to the utility increasing rates to cover its $463.9 million in uninsured wildfire expenses.
“I encourage everyone to attend the April 5 meeting and tell the commission why it is wrong to stick electricity customers with a blank check for uninsured fire costs, either in 2007 or the future,” said Conklin. “They should let the commission know that with such a scheme in place, there is no incentive for SDG&E to make their system safe. More catastrophic wildfires ignited by the utility are foreseeable for the future if the uninsured costs of the fires the utility ignites are paid by somebody else—namely the customers they serve.”
For more information, contact Conklin at 760- 787-0794 or check the utility commission’s website at www.cpuc.ca.gov.