Pacific Gas and Electric sets aside $100 million to help California residents hurt by blast

Monday, September 13, 2010

PG&E sets up $100 million fund to help San Bruno

SAN BRUNO, Calif. — Pacific Gas and Electric Co. said Monday it has set aside up to $100 million to help San Bruno, California residents recover from last week’s natural gas pipeline explosion.

The utility said it will help residents with immediate cash payments and pay for costs that aren’t covered by insurance. Residents will get $15,000, $25,000 or $50,000 depending on the damage to their homes.

PG&E says residents won’t be asked to waive legal claims to get the money. PG&E is partnering with government officials, community leaders and organizations, including the American Red Cross and the United Way of the Bay Area to adminster the funds.

“We know that no amount of money can ever make up for what’s been lost,” said PG&E Corp. Chairman, President and CEO Peter Darbee. “This program is just one piece of our promise that PG&E will live up to its commitment to help rebuild this community and help the people of San Bruno rebuild their lives.”

Thursday’s blast and fire destroyed nearly 50 homes and damaged dozens more. Four people were killed, four remain missing and at least 60 were injured. The utility said it will pay the city of San Bruno for the cost of responding to the disaster and repairing damage. The city got an initial $3 million on Monday.

“We are here today, and we’ll continue to be here,” said Pacific Gas and Electric President Chris Johns. “We are going to be here as long as it takes.”

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