California's chief utility regulator is expected to address alleged backroom dealings with the state's largest utility when he presides over his last voting meeting of the five-member commission Thursday.
California Public Utilities Commission President Michael Peevey is due to chair a commission meeting amid an ongoing scandal over secret emails exchanges that show a cozy relationship with Pacific Gas & Electric Co. executives.
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It will be Peevey's last voting meeting before he retires at the end of the year after completing two six-year terms.
Peevey has been under fire in connection to a series of emails describing alleged secrete negotiations between him and others at the commission and executives with Pacific Gas & Electric Co. that the utility and other have released since July.
In the latest email exchange made public this week, PG&E Vice President Brian Cherry says in a January 14 email that California Public Utilities Commission member Mike Florio said he would write a favorable opinion for a proposed gas rate if PG&E did not like one written by another member of the commission.
It is the latest in a series of emails released by the utility and others, many of them also from January, that allegedly show PG&E executives privately negotiating with state utilities commission officials.
Previous emails released by PG&E show company executives sought — and obtained — the administrative law judge they wanted in the gas rate hike case. Peevey, a former president of Southern California Edison Co., and Florio also were included in those email negotiations. Florio has recused himself from the rate case.
State regulators last month fined PG&E and required its shareholders to cover as much as $400 million of the planned gas rate increase because of the backroom negotiations between the utility and regulators over the administrative law judge.