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TUD Leaders Give Update On PG&E Negotiations

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Sonora, CA — Tuolumne Utilities District officials provided new details on efforts to acquire PG&E infrastructure, and related water rights, during this past weekend’s Mother Lode Views.

District General Manager Don Perkins stated, “We hope to have a fully completed and executed purchase and sales agreement by the end of this year.”

Adding, “It is similar to buying a home and going through a title transaction, only it is times a hundred. There are so many different facilities out there that need to be identified. (Determining) What is going to go to TUD and what’s going to stay with PG&E, whether it is real property, easements or roads.”

We reported earlier that the district has hired a PR firm to help educate the public on the potential acquisition.

The potential cost to the district to acquire the Tuolumne Main Canal and reservoirs like Pinecrest and Lyons is not immediately known to the public, as the negotiations are being done in closed session. But Perkins says more information should come to light later this year and there will be public meetings to review the proposal.

TUD is currently in exclusive negotiations with PG&E. TUD receives water free from PG&E under a long-standing agreement. PG&E is looking to downsize its infrastructure and if TUD does not take it over, it could open the door to private ownership.

Board President Barbara Balen added, “The entire board, 5-0, is deeply committed for the long term to get our county of origin source water and senior water rights and to keep those in the public domain. I cannot stress that enough. The concern is that we want to keep the water affordable. Allowing water to be commoditized, under let’s say a private purveyor, would change that picture.”

You can find the show, where they also discussed recent storm damage, district priorities, and the Sonora wastewater plant construction, by clicking here.