Last Wednesday, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-OR) introduced legislation designed to help modernize the U.S. Postal Service, to save Saturday mail delivery and to repeal the crippling pre-funding law that is responsible for 80 percent of the USPS’ financial problems.
Within hours of Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe’s testimony before the Senate Homeland Security and Government Oversight Committee, two of our longtime friends on Capitol Hill became the first members of the 113th Congress put together binding legislation that, if passed, would steer the Postal Service toward prosperity—as opposed to the postmaster general’s disastrous plan to slash service and downsize, which will lead the Postal Service into a death spiral.
The legislation calls for:
- Repealing the onerous 2006 postal mandate that forces the Postal Service to spend $5.5 billion a year to pre-fund 75 years’ worth future retiree health care benefits for retirees—a burden shared by no other federal agency or private enterprise.
- Preventing any cuts to Saturday mail delivery service.
- Clearing a path to innovation, giving the Postal Service the freedom to find new ways to raise revenue.
The bills address the Postal Service’s problems and propose ways to strengthen the agency and maintain the excellent level of service Americans have come to expect, while also preserving middle-class jobs and creating new opportunities for the Postal Service moving forward.
The NALC fully supports this effort from Sen. Sanders and Rep. DeFazio, and I urge you to call your House member and both of your senators, asking them to show their support by signing on as co-sponsors.
- Click here to find your House member’s phone number, then call them and ask them to co-sponsor H.R. 630 (as well as H.Res. 30, which specifically supports Saturday delivery).
- Click here to find your senator’s phone number, then call them and ask them to co-sponsor S. 316.
Congress created the Postal Service’s current financial crisis, so it’s up to Congress to find a meaningful path to solving it. These bills will allow our employer to flourish for decades to come and preserve not only thousands of postal worker jobs, but also the 8 million postal industry jobs that depend on a robust Postal Service.