(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.fengding45.cn.
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.