FOLLOW UP TO BLOG #91 (Burn-Baby-Burn) – #93

In order to provide a true assessment of the problems at PG&E, we go back to the basic four questions of our Management Learnings (BLOG):

IS THERE A PROBLEM?

YES, there is. PG&E has no concern for the FIFTH largest country in the world CALIFORNIA and its citizens. PG&E is so busy getting out of Chapter 11 for the second time, that its main management efforts are centered on the exit and its safety focus in a bid to win California’s support for its plan. The plan simply will create too much debt – as they pay off the fire victims and bondholders with stock. The shareholders will be able to hold on to their shares under this settlement, but the plan says that PGE will pay $99 million in underwriting and professional fees. Why couldn’t the fees be paid in stock? – we have to remember that the business judgment of PG&E, requires the approval of the California Public Utilities Commission. The question remains “is there a problem”? PG&E and everyone is playing the fiddle, keeping busy, while the woods are read to burn the Fifth largest country in the world.

WHAT IS THE PROBLEM?

PG&E’S Management team has been totally incompetent and irresponsible towards forest –management, no focus and accountability, no ethics, trust and non-applicability of common sense for at least two decades.

  1. 2015 -2018 California experienced 1.54 fires a day.
  2. PG&E started to keep numbers on fires in 2014. Through 2017 they experienced 1550 fires that translates to 1.06 fires a day. Why wouldn’t they keep track of this key data before 2014?  Most of these fires were caused by 130 million trees needing to be removed or the excess in under-brush cleaned.
  3. PG&E can only pass quotas by 150M a year when measured over a three-year period.
  4. PG&E’s own figures revealed that 125M miles of high power lines need to be replaced – that’s five times around the circumference of the world.
  5. PG&E reported that more than 16,000 sections of high voltage power line fell to the ground over a five-year period. 2013-2017, that translates to the potential for fires 9 times a day.

It is evident that these unacceptable conditions have existed for years, yet for years “the tree huggers” have allowed these conditions to exist and grow. Their focus has been on trivial matters that have been accentuated by academics, socialists/communists, and leftists in general. For years, we have needed existing and future techniques in “forest management” to be used in all the Western States. Unless immediate corrective actions are taken, California will eventually disappear, and the areas left will be the haven headed for a a level of mediocrity and poverty equal to those of other not so fortunate countries.

WHO CAN DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT?

  1. PRESIDENT – DONALD TRUMP
  2. HONORABLE – GAVIN NEWSOM 
  3. GOVERNOR OF CALIFORNIA
  4. CEO OF PG&E – BILL JOHNSON

WHAT CAN THEY DO?

  1. President Trump – Form a team of world experts on “forest management” headed up by Secretary – Cabinet Level, and have them make a two week recommendation of what it will take to solve PG&E’S “forest management” problems – controlled burns etc.

President to activate Army, Navy/Marine, Air/Space Force and Coast Guard Reserve units to make available bodies to do work, equipment, and most importantly provide the leadership that will assure the work being completed in a proper manner. If needed, have the 101st Airborne Division provide the ”grunt” work that will be needed. Let this serve as the largest peace-time maneuver showing the might of U.S. forces – should anyone decide to take on the U.S.

During the 1950’s, President Eisenhower showed off U.S. Airborne power in Lebanon by conducting the largest air drop since WWII – both troops and heavy equipment were dropped – this not only showed off the power of the U.S., but also cleared out and put to work equipment and supplies. This step used up older inventory and created work to replenish those items. To this day, I still remember the occasion as a very impressive action on the part of the United States.

The same military objectives could be achieved on a civilian project that needs help. Might even draw Republican votes out of California.

  1. The Honorable Governor Newsom – has to declare an immediate State of Emergency and make sure that PG&E doesn’t come out of Chapter 11 Bankruptcy. Pay all bills with stock that will provide future growth opportunities for recipients and eliminate all union and other types of hiring regulations. Lots of new employees will be required. I hate to say that I would agree with Governor Newsome on any point, but I do agree with him indicating that PG&E’S getting out of bankruptcy plan has too much debt. That’s why he needs Federal Govt. help. Without Federal help, the same incompetence will continue with predictable results. The Governor will have to make pay cuts be applicable in all areas.  That will make it an equitable solution across the board, and eliminate all objections.
  1. PG&E CEO Bill Johnson will need tons of help from the existing and future board members as well as the need to shed the monopolistic mind set and dependency on the State in controlling the utility. The CEO will have to recruit the people and then train them to take over projects once the military has them under control and working.

As can be seen, it is necessary to have an immediate meeting with the three individuals to get them to agree to work together on all the solutions and to get going as soon as PG&E, the State and Federal Governments are ready. Just as the Government bailed out LEE IACCOCA and CHRYSLER two+ decades ago with a low cost loan– the same has to happen to California and PG&E – at the same time all funds available to PG&E have to be granted and addressed in terms of longer repayment methodology and terms. It just doesn’t make sense to be paying administrative fees to the tune of $99Million while PG&E is going broke. Workers throughout California will have to take a temporary pay cut until PG&E gets back on track.

That meeting has to take place, where these three vital Individuals come up with a solution, and for once work for the safety of the citizen, economy and individual freedoms. If you three choose to not do anything about this issue, you can continue to count on disaster after disaster – you have a small window to stop this ever and on-going problem. Mr. President you can achieve all political objectives you might have in California with the same results accruing to Governor Newsom and Bill Johnson.

Gentlemen: if I can be of further help, please call me at 847- 477-9465.