The California Independent System Operator board refutes the claim that its employees scheduled ?fictitious load? during the energy crisis and rejects harsh criticism of the CAISO management and corporate culture. The criticism was raised by attorney Michael Strumwasser, who had done a report for the CAISO board that was leaked to legislators. That led to a hearing in which the grid operator was excoriated. In a report sent to Senator Joe Dunn (D-Garden Grove) June 5, the CAISO board criticizes Strumwasser?s analysis, considered ?damn damning? by Dunn for its ?intemperate tone, oversimplification and absolute characterizations [that] cloud rather than clarify the issue.? The board?s report finds that the grid operator is not without fault and improvements are needed, and thus it is working on protocols, training, and changes to management structure to avoid problems. ?A tempest in a teapot? is how one source described it. The report was released the same week that CAISO chief executive officer Terry Winter resigned. However, sources dismissed much of a connection. ?The report was finalized long before this week,? said CAISO spokesperson Stephanie McCorkle. She added that Strumwasser?s report included personnel files that cannot be made public because of the right to privacy. The board?s report rejected claims that CAISO scheduled fictitious load with the Department of Water Resources in November 2001 to help cover the outage. It also defends itself against Strumwasser?s findings that it was overly aggressive with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and blew off market participants. It notes the crisis environment, attributing much of the problem on November 14, 2001, and the request to schedule ?fictitious load,? to CAISO employees treating DWR?s role as both creditworthiness backer and scheduling coordinator The report acknowledges that asking DWR to schedule the power may have been impermissible but says that no tariff was allegedly violated. It admitted that the Senate committee investigating price manipulation in April 2003 was given incomplete and inconsistent information about whether they asked DWR to make out-of-market transactions. It attributed the problem to internal disagreement.