Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders has gained some more allies in his fight to save the Postal Service.
Writing in today’s New Orleans Times-Picayune, Bruce Alpert reports on a press conference held Monday by Sanders, Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-LA) and Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT). Landrieu told the press that she supports exploring ways USPS can boost revenue by offering new products and services.
Landrieu said the Postal Service’s proposed cuts would not only result in major job losses, but they also would hurt rural postal customers who rely heavily on local post offices.
Some of the suggested postal offerings she noted included notary and copying services, as well as the sale of hunting and fishing licenses. And she lent her voice to the call for Congress to relieve the burdensome requirement to pre-fund 75 years’ worth of future retiree health benefits within just 10 years.
Landrieu also labeled H.R. 2309, the so-called reform measure introduced by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA), “extremely draconian.”
That’s certainly a nice way of describing it. H.R. 2309 calls for letting the Postal Service end Saturday mail delivery and close post offices and processing centers while piling on layers of oversight bureaucracy that could abrogate USPS’ contracts with the NALC and the other craft unions, gutting pay and benefits and putting thousands of middle-class jobs at risk.
“There’s no reason for it,” Landrieu said.
“Here’s the reality: The U.S. Postal Service’s future retiree health fund is extraordinarily strong today,” Sanders added. “If there are no further contributions from the post office, and if the fund simply collects the 3.5 to 4 percent interest, which it does every year, that account will be fully funded in 21 years.”
Click here to read the story.
(Photo source: The Palm Beach Post)