PG&E tops list of biggest taxpayersBy Eli Segall
Pacific Gas & Electric Co. was the biggest taxpayer in Santa Clara County yet again this past year, as the utility's annual payments have more than doubled this past decade.
The San Francisco-based company, which serves roughly 15 million people from Bakersfield to Eureka, paid $24.3 million in taxes to the county for the year ending June 30, 2010, according to the county Assessor's Annual Report, released Aug. 26. That total was nearly the same figure PG&E paid the year prior.
A subsidiary of publicly-traded PG&E Corp., the utility has paid the most taxes in Santa Clara County for the past five years, according to the assessor's office. It has also seen its tax payments steadily climb.
PG&E paid roughly $10.4 million in the year ending June 30, 2002, $14.3 million in 2004, $19.2 million in 2006 and $21.4 million in 2008.
Matt Nauman, a PG&E spokesman, could not immediately explain the rising payments.
Meanwhile, the county's largest taxpayers this past year were another "who's who" of Silicon Valley technology and real estate giants (see box above). Others in the top 10 included Westfield Malls, which includes Valley Fair and Oakridge shopping centers, Santa Clara's Applied Materials Inc. and Sunnyvale-based Yahoo Inc.
Still, not every large taxpayer has shelled out significantly more money to Santa Clara County in recent years. Sobrato, for instance, paid roughly $14.8 million in 2002, $18.8 million in 2005, $17.4 million in 2007 and $16.9 million in 2009.
A Sobrato spokesperson could not immediately be reached for comment.
Largest taxpayers, 2009-2010
Pacific Gas & Electric Co - $24.3 million
Blackhawk Development - $20.7 million
Cisco Technology Inc. - $17.2 million
Sobrato Development - $11.7 million
Intel Corp. - $9.9 million
Westfield Malls - $9.2 million
Pacific Bell Telephone Co. - $8.9 million
Applied Materials Inc. - $8.5 million
Lockheed Missiles & Space Co. - $6.7 million
Yahoo Inc. - $6.5 million
Includes local and state / Source: Santa Clara Tax Collector
Copyright ©2010 San Jose Business Journal. Published 08/26/2010.