Pacific Gas and Electric Co., California's largest investor-owned utility, has contributed $250,000 to defeat a ballot measure that would ban same-sex marriage in the state, it was announced Tuesday.
Businesses often steer clear of ballot measures that deal with social issues for fear of alienating customers.
But PG&E officials said the San Francisco-based company's effort to defeat Proposition 8 on the Nov. 4 ballot is consistent with its long-time advocacy of equality for all.
Darlene Chiu, a PG&E spokeswoman, said that in the 1990s the company had contributed to efforts to defeat initiatives that curtailed affirmative action and attempted to crack down on illegal immigration.
"PG&E was also the first utility in the nation that sponsored a (lesbian, bisexual, gay and transgender) association in the '80s," Chiu said.
PG&E serves more than 15 million Californians in Northern and Central California.
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