(EDGAR Online via COMTEX) -- ITEM 2. MANAGEMENT'S DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS OF FINANCIAL CONDITION AND RESULTS OF OPERATIONS
This is a combined quarterly report of PG&E Corporation and the Utility and should be read in conjunction with each company's Condensed Consolidated Financial Statements and the Notes to the Condensed Consolidated Financial Statements included in Item 1. It should also be read in conjunction with the 2021 Form 10-K.
Summary of Changes in Net Income and Earnings per Share
PG&E Corporation's net income available for common shareholders was $475 million for the three months ended March 31, 2022, compared to $120 million in the same period in 2021. In the three months ended March 31, 2022, revenues increased as authorized through the 2020 GRC and the FERC formula rate.
Key Factors Affecting Financial Results
PG&E Corporation and the Utility believe that their financial condition, results of operations, liquidity, and cash flows may be materially affected by the following factors:
The Uncertainties in Connection with Any Future Wildfires, Wildfire Insurance, and AB 1054. While PG&E Corporation and the Utility cannot predict the occurrence, timing or extent of damages in connection with future wildfires, factors such as environmental conditions (including weather and vegetation conditions) and the efficacy of wildfire risk mitigation initiatives are expected to influence the frequency and severity of future wildfires. To the extent that future wildfires occur in the Utility's service territory, the Utility may incur costs associated with the investigations of the causes and origins of such fires, even if it is subsequently determined that such fires were not caused by the Utility's facilities. The financial impact of future wildfires could be mitigated through insurance, the Wildfire Fund or other forms of cost recovery. However, the Utility may not be able to obtain sufficient wildfire insurance coverage at a reasonable cost, or at all, and any such coverage may include limitations that could result in substantial uninsured losses depending on the amount and type of damages resulting from covered events, including coverage limitations applicable to different insurance layers. The Utility will not be able to obtain any recovery from the Wildfire Fund for wildfire-related losses in any Wildfire Fund coverage year ("Coverage Year") that do not exceed the greater of $1.0 billion in the aggregate and the amount of insurance coverage required under AB 1054. In addition, the policy reforms contemplated by AB 1054 are likely to affect the financial impact of future wildfires on PG&E Corporation and the Utility should any such wildfires occur. The Wildfire Fund is available to the Utility to pay eligible claims for liabilities arising from wildfires and serves as an alternative to traditional insurance products, provided that the Utility satisfies the conditions to the Utility's ongoing participation in the Wildfire Fund set forth in AB 1054 and that the Wildfire Fund has sufficient remaining funds. See "Loss Recoveries" in Note 10 of the Notes to the Condensed Consolidated Financial Statements in Item 1.
However, the impact of AB 1054 on PG&E Corporation and the Utility is subject to numerous uncertainties, including the Utility's ability to demonstrate to the CPUC that wildfire-related costs paid from the Wildfire Fund were just and reasonable and therefore not subject to reimbursement, and whether the benefits of participating in the Wildfire Fund ultimately outweigh its substantial costs. Finally, even if the Utility satisfies the ongoing eligibility and other requirements set forth in AB 1054, for eligible claims against the Utility arising from wildfires that occurred between July 12, 2019 and the Utility's emergence from Chapter 11 on July 1, 2020, the availability of the Wildfire Fund to pay such claims would be capped at 40% of the allowed amount of such claims. See "Wildfire Fund under AB 1054" in Note 10 of the Notes to the Condensed Consolidated Financial Statements in Item 1.
The Costs, Effectiveness, and Execution of the Utility's Wildfire Mitigation Initiatives. In response to the wildfire threat facing California, PG&E Corporation and the Utility have taken aggressive steps to mitigate the threat of catastrophic wildfires, the spread of wildfires should they occur and the impact of PSPS events.
PG&E Corporation and the Utility have incurred substantial expenditures in connection with the 2020-2022 WMP. For more information, see Note 4 of the Notes to the Condensed Consolidated Financial Statements in Item 1. The Utility expects that its wildfire mitigation initiatives will continue to involve substantial and ongoing expenditures. The extent to which the Utility will be able to recover these expenditures and potential other costs through rates is uncertain.
The Utility has implemented operational changes and investments that reduce wildfire risk, including the EPSS, PSPS, vegetation management, asset inspection, and system hardening programs. These programs, particularly the PSPS and EPSS programs, have been the subject of scrutiny and criticism by various stakeholders, including the California governor, the CPUC, and the court that oversaw the Utility's probation. The PSPS and EPSS programs have had an adverse impact on PG&E Corporation's and the Utility's reputation with customers, regulators, and policymakers, and future PSPS and EPSS events may increase these negative perceptions.
The Utility is subject to a number of legal and regulatory requirements related to its wildfire mitigation efforts, which require periodic inspections of electric assets and ongoing reporting related to this work. Although the Utility believes that it has complied substantially with these requirements, it is undertaking a review and has identified instances of noncompliance. The Utility intends to update the CPUC and OEIS as its review progresses. The Utility could face fines, penalties, enforcement action, or other adverse legal or regulatory consequences for the late inspections or other noncompliance related to wildfire mitigation efforts. See "Self-Reports to the CPUC" in "Regulatory Matters" below.
While PG&E Corporation and the Utility are committed to taking aggressive wildfire mitigation actions, if additional requirements are imposed that go beyond current expectations, such requirements could have a substantial impact on PG&E Corporation's and the Utility's financial condition, results of operations, liquidity, and cash flows. The success of the Utility's wildfire mitigation efforts depends on many factors, including on whether the Utility is able to retain or contract for the workforce necessary to execute its wildfire mitigation actions.
The Timing and Outcome of Ratemaking Proceedings. The Utility's financial results may be impacted by the timing and outcome of its FERC TO18 rate case and the resulting impact on the TO19 and TO20 rate cases, 2023 GRC, WMCE, and cost of capital applications and its ability to timely recover costs not currently in rates, including costs already incurred and future costs tracked in its CEMA, WEMA, WMPMA, FRMMA, CPPMA, VMBA, WMBA, and RTBA. The outcome of regulatory proceedings can be affected by many factors, including intervening parties' testimonies, potential rate impacts, the regulatory and political environments, and other factors. See Notes 4 and 11 of the Notes to the Condensed Consolidated Financial Statements in Item 1 and "Regulatory Matters" below.
The Impact of Wildfires. PG&E Corporation's and the Utility's liabilities for the 2019 Kincade fire, the 2020 Zogg fire, and the 2021 Dixie fire, are significant and may be excluded from any potential amounts recoverable under applicable insurance policies, the WEMA, FERC TO rates, or the Wildfire Fund under AB 1054. Recorded liabilities in connection with the 2019 Kincade fire and the 2021 Dixie fire have already exceeded potential amounts recoverable under applicable insurance policies. Liabilities in excess of recoverable amounts for these wildfires could have a material impact on PG&E Corporation's and the Utility's financial condition, results of operations, liquidity, and cash flows.
As of March 31, 2022, PG&E Corporation and the Utility had recorded an aggregate liability of $800 million, $375 million, and $1.15 billion for claims in connection with the 2019 Kincade fire, the 2020 Zogg fire, and the 2021 Dixie fire, respectively, and in each case before available insurance, and, in the case of the 2021 Dixie fire, other probable cost recoveries. These liability amounts correspond to the lower end of the range of reasonably estimable probable losses, but do not include all categories of potential damages and losses. Claims related to the 2019 Kincade fire that were not satisfied in full as of the Emergence Date were not discharged in connection with emerging from Chapter 11.
On September 24, 2021, the Shasta County District Attorney's Office charged the Utility with 11 felonies and 20 misdemeanors in connection with the 2020 Zogg fire and three other fires in Shasta County, California. If the Utility were to be convicted of certain charges in the Zogg Complaint, the Utility could be subject to material fines, penalties, and restitution, as well as non-monetary remedies such as oversight requirements, and accordingly the Utility currently believes that, depending on which charges it were to be convicted of, its total losses associated with the 2020 Zogg fire would materially exceed the $375 million of aggregate liability that PG&E Corporation and the Utility have recorded.
If the eligible claims for liabilities arising from wildfires were to exceed $1.0 billion in any Coverage Year, the Utility may be eligible to make a claim to the Wildfire Fund under AB 1054 for such excess amount, except that recoveries for the 2019 Kincade fire would be subject to the 40% limitation on the allowed amount of claims arising before emergence from bankruptcy, and recoveries for each of these fires would also be subject to the other limitations and requirements under AB 1054. As of March 31, 2022, the Utility had recorded insurance receivables of $430 million for the 2019 Kincade fire, $338 million for the 2020 Zogg fire, and $562 million for the 2021 Dixie fire. The Utility had recorded regulatory recovery and Wildfire Fund receivables of $452 million and $150 million, respectively, for the 2021 Dixie fire. However, there can be no assurance that such amounts will ultimately be recovered, and the Utility does not expect that any of its liability insurance would cover restitution payments ordered by the court presiding over the criminal proceeding in connection with the 2020 Zogg fire. See "2019 Kincade Fire," "2020 Zogg Fire," and "2021 Dixie Fire" in Note 10 of the Notes to the Condensed Consolidated Financial Statements in Item 1 for more information.
The Outcome of Other Enforcement, Litigation, and Regulatory Matters, and Other Government Proposals. The Utility's financial results may continue to be impacted by the outcome of other current and future enforcement, litigation, and regulatory matters, including those described above as well as the outcome of the Safety Culture OII, and potential penalties in connection with the Utility's WMP and safety and other self-reports. See Note 14 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements in Item 8 of the 2021 Form 10-K. In addition, the Utility's business profile and financial results could be impacted by the outcome of recent calls for municipalization of part or all of the Utility's businesses, offers by municipalities and other public entities to acquire the electric assets of the Utility within their respective jurisdictions and calls for state intervention, including the possibility of a state takeover of the Utility. PG&E Corporation and the Utility cannot predict the nature, occurrence, timing or extent of any such scenario, and there can be no assurance that any such scenario would not involve significant ownership or management changes to PG&E Corporation or the Utility, including by the state of California.
The Uncertainties in Connection with the Enhanced Oversight and Enforcement Process. On April 15, 2021, the CPUC placed the Utility in step 1 of the EOEP. As a result, the Utility is subject to additional reporting requirements, monitoring, and oversight by the CPUC. See "Enhanced Oversight and Enforcement Process" in "Enforcement and Litigation Matters" below.
The Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic. PG&E Corporation's and the Utility's financial condition, results of operations, liquidity and cash flows have been and could continue to be significantly affected by the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. The principal areas of near-term impact include liquidity, financial results and business operations, stemming primarily from the ongoing economic hardship of the Utility's customers and the moratorium on service disconnections. The Utility continues to monitor the overall impact of the COVID-19 pandemic; however, the Utility expects a significant impact on monthly cash collections as long as current circumstances persist. PG&E Corporation and the Utility expect additional financial impacts in the future as a result of COVID-19 pandemic. Other impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on PG&E Corporation and the Utility have included operational disruptions, workforce disruptions, both in personnel availability (including a reduction in contract labor resources) and deployment, delays in production and shipping of materials used in the Utility's operations, higher credit spreads and borrowing costs and could potentially also include a reduction in revenue due to the cost of capital adjustment mechanism and incremental financing needs. For more information on the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on PG&E Corporation and the Utility, see "PG&E Corporation's and the Utility's financial condition, results of operations, liquidity and cash flows have been and could continue to be significantly affected by the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic." in Item 1A. Risk Factors in the 2021 Form 10-K and "COVID-19" in Liquidity and Financial Resources below.
For more information about the risks that could materially affect PG&E Corporation's and the Utility's financial condition, results of operations, liquidity, and cash flows, or that could cause future results to differ from historical results, see Item 1A. Risk Factors in this quarterly report on Form 10-Q and the 2021 Form 10-K. In addition, this quarterly report contains forward-looking statements that are necessarily subject to various risks and uncertainties. These statements reflect management's judgment and opinions that are based on current estimates, expectations, and projections about future events and assumptions regarding these events and management's knowledge of facts as of the date of this report. See "Forward-Looking Statements" above for a list of some of the factors that may cause actual results to differ materially. PG&E Corporation and the Utility are unable to predict all the factors that may affect future results and do not undertake an obligation to update forward-looking statements, whether in response to new information, future events, or otherwise.
PG&E Corporation had a U.S. federal net operating loss carryforward of approximately $21.1 billion and California net operating loss carryforward of $18.9 billion as of December 31, 2021.
Under Section 382 of the IRC, if a corporation (or a consolidated group) undergoes an "ownership change," net operating loss carryforwards and other tax attributes may be subject to certain limitations. In general, an ownership change occurs if the aggregate stock ownership of certain shareholders (generally five percent shareholders, applying certain look-through and aggregation rules) increases by more than 50% over such shareholders' lowest percentage ownership during the testing period (generally three years). PG&E Corporation's and the Utility's Amended Articles limit Transfers (as defined in the Amended Articles) that increase a person's or entity's (including certain groups of persons) ownership of PG&E Corporation's equity securities to 4.75% or more prior to the Restriction Release Date (as defined in the Amended Articles) without approval by the Board of Directors of PG&E Corporation (the "Ownership Restrictions"). As discussed below under "Update on Ownership Restrictions in PG&E Corporation's Amended Articles," due to the election to treat the Fire Victim Trust as a grantor trust for income tax purposes, the calculation of Percentage Stock Ownership (as defined in the Amended Articles) will effectively be based on a reduced number of shares outstanding, namely the total number of outstanding equity securities less the number of equity securities held by the Fire Victim Trust, the Utility and ShareCo. As of the date of this report, it is more likely than not that PG&E Corporation has not undergone an ownership change, and consequently, its net operating loss carryforwards and other tax attributes are not limited by Section 382 of the IRC.
Furthermore, the activities of the Fire Victim Trust are treated as activities of the Utility for tax purposes. Accordingly, PG&E Corporation will recognize income tax benefits and the corresponding DTA as the Fire Victim Trust sells shares of PG&E Corporation common stock, and the amounts of such benefits and assets will be impacted by the price at which the Fire Victim Trust sells the shares, rather than the price at the time such shares were transferred to the Fire Victim Trust. On January 31, 2022 and April 14, 2022, the Fire Victim Trust exchanged 40,000,000 and 60,000,000 Plan Shares, respectively, for an equal number of New Shares in the manner contemplated by the Share Exchange and Tax Matters Agreement; in each case, the Fire Victim Trust thereafter reported that it sold the applicable New Shares. The Fire Victim Trust's sale of 40,000,000 shares of PG&E Corporation common stock on January 31, 2022 resulted in a tax benefit of $135 million recorded in PG&E Corporation's and the Utility's Condensed Consolidated Financial Statements for the quarter ended March 31, 2022.
Update on Ownership Restrictions in PG&E Corporation's Amended Articles
As a result of the grantor trust election, shares of PG&E Corporation common stock owned by the Fire Victim Trust are treated as held by the Utility and, in turn, attributed to PG&E Corporation for income tax purposes. Consequently, any shares of PG&E Corporation common stock owned by the Fire Victim Trust, along with any shares owned by the Utility directly, are effectively excluded from the total number of outstanding equity securities when calculating a person's Percentage Stock Ownership (as defined in the Amended Articles) for purposes of the 4.75% ownership limitation in the Amended Articles. Shares owned by ShareCo are also effectively excluded because ShareCo is a disregarded entity for income tax purposes. For example, although PG&E Corporation had 2,465,220,279 shares outstanding as of April 21, 2022, only 1,609,733,099 shares (the number of outstanding shares of common stock less the number of shares held by the Fire Victim Trust, the Utility and ShareCo) count as outstanding for purposes of the ownership restrictions in the Amended Articles. As such, based on the total number of outstanding equity securities and taking into account the shares of PG&E Corporation common stock known to have been sold by the Fire Victim Trust as of April 21, 2022, a person's effective Percentage Stock Ownership limitation for purposes of the Amended Articles as of April 21, 2022 was 3.10% of outstanding shares. On January 31, 2022 and April 14, 2022, the Fire Victim Trust exchanged 40,000,000 and 60,000,000 Plan Shares, respectively, for an equal number of New Shares in the manner contemplated by the Share Exchange and Tax Matters Agreement; in each case, the Fire Victim Trust thereafter reported that it sold the applicable New Shares. As of April 21, 2022, to the knowledge of PG&E Corporation, the Fire Victim Trust had sold 100,000,000 shares of PG&E Corporation common stock.
RESULTS OF OPERATIONS
The following discussion presents PG&E Corporation's and the Utility's operating results for the three months ended March 31, 2022 and 2021. See "Key Factors Affecting Financial Results" above for further discussion about factors that could affect future results of operations.
PG&E Corporation The consolidated results of operations consist primarily of results related to the Utility, which are discussed in the "Utility" section below. The following table provides a summary of net income (loss) attributable to common shareholders for the three months ended March 31, 2022 and 2021: Three Months Ended March 31, (in millions) 2022 2021 Consolidated Total $ 475 $ 120 PG&E Corporation (52) (54) Utility $ 527 $ 174
PG&E Corporation's net loss primarily consists of income taxes and interest expense on long-term debt.
The table below shows certain items from the Utility's Condensed Consolidated Statements of Income for the three months ended March 31, 2022 and 2021. The table separately identifies the revenues and costs that impacted earnings from those that did not impact earnings. In general, expenses the Utility is authorized to pass through directly to customers (such as costs to purchase electricity and natural gas, as well as costs to fund public purpose programs), and the corresponding amount of revenues collected to recover those pass-through costs, do not impact earnings.
Revenues that impact earnings are primarily those that have been authorized by the CPUC and the FERC to recover the Utility's costs to own and operate its assets and to provide the Utility an opportunity to earn its authorized rate of return on rate base. Expenses that impact earnings are primarily those that the Utility incurs to own and operate its assets.
Three Months Ended March 31, 2022 Three Months Ended March 31, 2021 Revenues/Costs: Revenues/Costs: That Did Not That Did Not That Impacted Impact Total That Impacted Impact Total (in millions) Earnings Earnings Utility Earnings Earnings Utility Electric operating revenues $ 2,904 $ 1,254 $ 4,158 $ 2,343 $ 1,052 $ 3,395 Natural gas operating revenues 922 718 1,640 897 424 1,321 Total operating revenues 3,826 1,972 5,798 3,240 1,476 4,716 Cost of electricity - 502 502 - 590 590 Cost of natural gas - 561 561 - 307 307 Operating and maintenance 2,085 1,022 3,107 1,708 623 2,331 Wildfire-related claims, net of insurance recoveries (1) - (1) 172 - 172 Wildfire Fund expense 118 - 118 119 - 119 Depreciation, amortization, and decommissioning 972 - 972 888 - 888 Total operating expenses 3,174 2,085 5,259 2,887 1,520 4,407 Operating income (loss) 652 (113) 539 353 (44) 309 Interest income 9 - 9 2 - 2 Interest expense (364) - (364) (348) - (348) Other income, net 43 113 156 89 44 133 Reorganization items, net - - - (2) - (2) Income before income taxes 340 - 340 94 - 94 Income tax benefit (1) (190) (83) Net income 530 177 Preferred stock dividend requirement (1) 3 3 Income Attributable to Common Stock $ 527 $ 174
(1) These items impacted earnings for the three months ended March 31, 2022 and 2021.
Utility Revenues and Costs that Impacted Earnings
The following discussion presents the Utility's operating results for the three months ended March 31, 2022 and 2021, focusing on revenues and expenses that impacted earnings for these periods.
The Utility's electric and natural gas operating revenues that impacted earnings increased by $586 million, or 18%, in the three months ended March 31, 2022, compared to the same period in 2021, primarily due to the recognition of approximately $310 million in revenues related to the settlement agreement for the 2018 CEMA application (see "2018 CEMA Application" below), increased base revenues authorized in the 2020 GRC, and additional revenues as authorized through the FERC formula rate.
Operating and Maintenance
The Utility's operating and maintenance expenses that impacted earnings increased by $377 million or 22% in the three months ended March 31, 2022, compared to the same period in 2021, primarily due to the recognition of approximately $310 million of previously deferred expenses which was authorized by the settlement agreement for the 2018 CEMA application (see "2018 CEMA Application" below). Additionally, the Utility recognized approximately $85 million in expenses related to the Kincade SED Settlement as well as approximately $55 million in expenses related to the Kincade Stipulation and the Dixie Stipulation (each as defined in Note 10 of the Notes to the Condensed Consolidated Financial Statements in Item 1). These increases were partially . . .
Apr 28, 2022
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