PG&E creditors look to hire high-profile public relations firm

Published on

The Associated Press

The committee representing the companies that Pacific Gas & Electric owes billions of dollars is looking to hire one of the most influential public relations firms in the state.

The 11-member creditors’ committee has filed a motion in U.S. Bankruptcy Court seeking to employ Los Angeles-based Rogers & Associates, the firm behind California’s anti-smoking campaign.

Under federal bankruptcy law, a creditors’ committee may employ attorneys, accountants or other professionals to assist the panel in its duties. The debtor – in this case, PG&E – pays for such services.

The utility said it doesn’t mind paying the firm’s $1,800-an-hour bill. But consumer advocates are outraged.

“Of course PG&E supports this,” said Doug Heller of the Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights. “They see it as an opportunity to push for a public bailout.”

The judge overseeing the PG&E case has not set a hearing on the matter.

Creditors’ committee members said they want to hire Rogers & Associates to handle the large number of media inquiries about PG&E‘s case.

Rogers & Associates spokesman Chris Carter said his firm will also provide support and information for PG&E‘s creditors, or those who believe they’re owed part of the $14.4 billion in debt PG&E accumulated before filing for bankruptcy April 6.

Consumer Watchdog
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