Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) has embarked upon a campaign to shut off power, known as the Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS), when weather conditions are most advantageous for fire risk. The PSPS is PG&E’s response to the fires that have ravaged the state over the past couple of years.
As of October 8, 2019, PG&E’s most recent implementation of the PSPS is planning to affect thirty counties, and several hundred thousand customers, with an effective shutoff time beginning October 9, 2019, at 4:00 a.m. The estimated downtime is yet to be determined.
Local educational agencies (LEAs) may also be affected by the power shutoffs and the California Department of Education (CDE) has provided a frequently asked questions (FAQs) webpage about the availability of the J-13A waiver as a result of these power shutoffs. The FAQs can be accessed by clicking here.
While the guidance does not provide an explicit approval, and many LEAs do not have a history of school closures and emergency days built into their calendar, we commend the CDE for providing the FAQs. The webpage provides contact information for the department should additional questions regarding the J-13A waiver arise as a result of the PSPS.