- Associated Press - Saturday, June 27, 2015

SAN BRUNO, Calif. (AP) - A bill in the California Legislature would prohibit the state’s largest utility from claiming tax deductions for a $1.6 billion penalty stemming from a deadly 2010 natural gas explosion.

The San Jose Mercury News reports Saturday (https://bayareane.ws/1fWIMA1 ) that the legislation was introduced Friday by two state lawmakers who represent the San Francisco suburb of San Bruno.

A spokesman for Pacific Gas & Electric Co. said the energy company believes the costs are deductible under tax laws.

The state Public Utility Commission imposed the record-setting $1.6 billion penalty in April, for the company’s role in an explosion that killed eight.

Commissioners have written to the Internal Revenue Service and California taxing authorities to emphasize that it intended for the penalty to be deemed punitive for tax purposes.

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Information from: San Jose (Calif.) Mercury News, https://www.mercurynews.com

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