CHICO, CALIF. – June 18, 2019 – Today, the national law firm of Baron & Budd announces a $1 billion settlement with PG&E on behalf of 14 public entities for taxpayer losses caused by the 2015 Butte Fire, 2017 North Bay Fires, and 2018 Camp Fire.
The payment of the settlement amount of $1 billion is to be incorporated in, and subject to confirmation of, a plan of reorganization to be filed by PG&E in its pending Chapter 11 case. The settlement does not affect the claims of any residents, individuals, or businesses affected by the fires.
JAMS Mediator Judge Jay Gandhi (Ret.) presided over several days of in-person mediation sessions held in San Francisco, Calif. Participants in the mediation included 14 public entities with various claims from the 2015 Butte Fire, the 2017 North Bay Fires, and the 2018 Camp Fire. Judge Gandhi’s global proposals included a total payment of $1 billion to be made pursuant to PG&E’s confirmed plan of reorganization. PG&E and all 14 public entities accepted the proposals.
“This money will help local government and taxpayers rebuild their communities after several years of devastating wildfires,” said Baron & Budd Shareholder Scott Summy. “The cities and counties will be in a better position to help their citizens rebuild and move forward.”
“PG&E’s new board appears ready to look forward by resolving these important taxpayer claims for the benefit of the communities,” said Baron & Budd Shareholder John Fiske. “Our clients want to rebuild and focus on prevention, mitigation, and safety into the future.”
Scott Summy and John Fiske are lead counsel for all 14 public entities and serve as lead counsel for over 30 California public entities affected by utility-caused wildfires, including those started by Southern California Edison. The public entities are also represented by Dixon Diab & Chambers, a firm specializing in wildfire litigation.