California

PG&E to pay $1 billion to local governments over destructive fires

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The remains of a home in Paradise, Calif., where an artist has painted murals on some of the ruins from last year’s Camp fire.
(Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)

The Northern California utility blamed for the ignition of several wildfires that killed dozens and destroyed thousands of homes has agreed to pay $1 billion to local governments.

Attorneys representing 14 local public entities announced the settlement with Pacific Gas & Electric on Tuesday to cover “taxpayer losses.” The fires include a 2015 fire in Butte County, a series of 2017 fires in Northern California wine country and the 2018 fire that destroyed the town of Paradise and killed 85 people.

PG&E Corp. filed for bankruptcy earlier this year, citing billions of dollars in expected losses, mostly from lawsuits filed by individual fire victims, businesses and insurance companies. A judge overseeing that case must approve the settlement announced Tuesday.

Pacific Gas & Electric did not immediately respond to a request for comment.