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Bankruptcy Court Update: Procedural Filings Made Today

04/20/2001

SAN FRANCISCO - Pacific Gas and Electric Company made the following procedural filings in federal bankruptcy court today:

The company filed a routine cash flow forecast which is required as part of the debtor's ongoing obligation to keep the court and creditors aware of its current and projected financial status. The cash flow projections were filed in connection with the company's final hearing on its request to use the "cash collateral" in which its Mortgage Trustee and its gas suppliers have a security interest. The court previously granted the company's request at a preliminary hearing on April 9. 2001.

Based upon current projections of revenues from approved rates, current regulatory rules, and expected outlays, PG&E is projecting that it has adequate revenues over the next six months to pay its future operating costs, including ongoing payments to QFs and payments presently required to be made to the DWR. A critical assumption made in the forecast is that DWR is purchasing the "full net open position" for PG&E's customers going forward, as called for in AB1x, and therefore the ISO is no longer attempting to charge PG&E with any costs beyond those attributable to PG&E's own resources. Two weeks ago FERC ruled that the ISO must cease billing PG&E and Edison for power purchases, since neither utility currently meets the criteria in the ISO's own tariff to be a creditworthy buyer.

Complying with court requested follow-ups to previous motions, the company also filed two supplemental motions seeking court approval of stipulations regarding its earlier motions to use cash collateral in which bondholders or gas suppliers have a beneficial interest. The court previously provided interim approval in these matters.

Also complying with a court requested follow-up, the company withdrew its earlier motion seeking authorization to pay refunds to developers and other non-residential customers for main line extensions. These refunds reflect part of the cost of engineering and construction work to extend utilities to bare lots or to add new loads to existing service. Though these deposits and refunds are allowed in the normal course of business for work done after the April 6 Chapter 11 filing, refunds associated with work performed prior to April 6 are classified as pre-petition under bankruptcy law and cannot be paid without court approval. The court earlier authorized refunds to individual residential customers, but questioned whether, at this early stage of the proceedings, it had enough information to decide if subdivision developers and non-residential customers should be treated differently than other utility creditors. To allow more time to explore the issue, the company elected instead to withdraw the motion. In the meantime, main line extension advances made to the company post-petition will continue to be refunded in the ordinary course of business.

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