PRESS RELEASES 2003
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 17, 2003
ISSUED BY:   Corporate Communications 1-800-743-6397

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PG&E CORP. SEES IMPROVING FINANCIAL PERFORMANCE

(New York, NY) - In remarks to investors and analysts today at the Merrill Lynch 2003 Power & Gas Leaders Conference, Robert D. Glynn, Jr., Chairman, CEO and President of PG&E Corporation (NYSE: PCG) said the company is “on a clear path to stability and increased financial performance.”

Glynn outlined the recent proposed settlement agreement to resolve Pacific Gas and Electric Company's Chapter 11 case, including elements of the proposed settlement that would strengthen the utility's financial health. These elements include investment-grade credit ratings for Pacific Gas and Electric Company, an authorized return on equity of 11.22 percent, and the establishment of a $2.21 billion after-tax “regulatory asset,” which would be included in the utility's rate base.

“The proposed settlement agreement and a new plan of reorganization are proceeding on schedule through approval processes at the California Public Utilities Commission and in the bankruptcy court,” said Glynn. “We believe the agreement is on track to achieve the first quarter 2004 target for the utility's exit from Chapter 11.”

Glynn also cited recent progress toward a more stable regulatory environment in California, including a proposed 2003 General Rate Case (GRC) settlement submitted this week for approval at the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC). The proposed settlement was entered into by Pacific Gas and Electric Company, the CPUC's Office of Ratepayer Advocates, The Utility Reform Network and other stakeholders. The proposed GRC settlement would provide revenues that would allow the utility the opportunity to earn its authorized return on equity, and would provide a mechanism for timely and predictable revenue adjustments in 2004, 2005 and 2006 to cover costs associated with ratebase growth and inflation.

Glynn reaffirmed the company's previously issued earnings guidance for 2003 and 2004, and he reiterated the company's aspiration to pay dividends in the latter part of 2005.

A webcast replay of Glynn's presentation is available on the PG&E Corporation web site, www.pgecorp.com.

The statements in this release and in Mr. Glynn's presentation regarding management's beliefs and expectations for increased financial performance, shareholder value and future dividends are forward-looking statements that are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties. Actual results could differ materially depending on many factors, including whether the proposed settlement agreements in the utility's Chapter 11 case and the General Rate Case proceeding are approved by the CPUC, whether the proposed Chapter 11 settlement plan is timely implemented, the outcome of various regulatory proceedings, and other factors discussed in PG&E Corporation's reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.


 

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