SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California Gov. Gavin Newsom is proposing to create a new advisory board to help set standards that electric companies must follow to prevent wildfires. But the board could operate partially in secret.

The Wildfire Safety Advisory Board would make recommendations to officials at the state Public Utilities Commission. But their communications could be withheld from the public.

It would have to hold meetings in public but would not have to follow other provisions of the state's open meetings law.

Gov. Gavin Newsom says the proposal is a work in progress and things could change. The bill still needs approval from the Legislature.

Jamie Court, president of the advocacy group Consumer Watchdog, says open meeting laws should apply to any deliberations about the public's safety from fires started by utilities.

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