Michael Picker to step down as head of California PUC
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The head of California’s Public Utilities Commission has announced he will retire after almost five years on a job dominated by oversight of devastating wildfires.
Michael Picker said Thursday he will wait to leave his job as president of the state’s utility regulator until Gov. Gavin Newsom names his successor.
He made the announcement at a commission meeting in San Francisco.
Picker was appointed to the PUC in 2014 by then-Gov. Jerry Brown and became president in December of that year.
Investigators have found that many of California’s most destructive and deadly wildfires in recent years have been caused by the state’s biggest utility, Pacific Gas & Electric. The PUC’s work has been focused in recent years on working to ensure utility equipment is safer and to prevent more fires.