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"It was a splendid population - for all the slow, sleepy, sluggish-brained sloths stayed at home - you never find that sort of people among pioneers - you cannot build pioneers out of that sort of material. It was that population that gave to California a name for getting up astounding enterprises and rushing them through with a magnificent dash and daring and a recklessness of cost or consequences, which she bears unto this day - and when she projects a new surprise the grave world smiles as usual and says, "Well, that is California all over."

- - - - Mark Twain (Roughing It)

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Grand jury probes PG&E's ties with California regulators

Erin Brockovich
Erin was involved with the PG&E case about contamination of drinking water with hexavalent chromium in the southern California town of Hinkley.  The case was settled in 1996 for $333 million, the largest settlement ever paid in a direct-action lawsuit in US history. 

Corruption in PG&E - Say it ain't so

  • Only a "crazy" person would think that a government granted monopoly that is in bed with movers and shakers could possibly be corrupt.

SAN FRANCISCO -- A federal grand jury is investigating ties between executives with California's largest utility and state regulators, a newspaper reported Friday.
The San Francisco Chronicle said it's the latest probe involving relations between Pacific Gas and Electric Co. and regulators with the California Public Utilities Commission since a PG&E pipeline explosion in 2010 killed eight people in suburban San Francisco.

A federal investigation after the blast concluded that lax oversight by the utilities commission was partly to blame.

Federal investigations last year charged the utility with violating safety laws and obstructing justice in connection with the pipeline blast. In April, the panel approved a record $1.6 billion penalty against PG&E in connection with the disaster.

The explosion prompted state and federal investigations into allegations of back-channel dealings between PG&E executives and the utility commission's former head, Michael Peevey, whose term expired earlier this year. Peevey has not commented publicly on the probes.

PG&E officials say company officials involved in the relations with regulators no longer work for the utility.

In the letter disclosing the grand jury investigation, two assistant U.S. attorneys told PG&E lawyers that they plan to use some of the evidence from the probe in the prosecution of the San Bruno case against the company. They did not provide further details.
PG&E spokesman Greg Snapper told the Chronicle in a statement: "We've publicly reported that state and federal attorneys have begun investigations in connection with these communications. We're going to keep cooperating with officials as the process moves forward."

(San Jose Mercury News)

PG&E Suggested “Prozac” for Injured

New e-mails brought to light between Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E), Southern California Edison (SCE), and the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) reveal the extent of corruption and backroom dealing that have characterized the state’s smart meter program.  

E-mails reveal that former CPUC President Michael Peevey was aware of health problems caused by smart meters early on in the program.   Commissioners and staff experienced overcharging and electronic interference issues with smart meters on their homes.  Meanwhile, utilities schemed with regulators behind the scenes to raise opt-out fees to force people in poverty to stick with the unpopular meters and prop up the failing multi-billion dollar smart grid program in California.
Read more:  Scoop Feed.net

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