Senate’s Postal Service Bill Disappoints Board of Governors, Postmaster GeneralApril 26, 2012
Statement of the Board of Governors of the U.S. Postal Service:
The board, in working with management, has spent the past two years preparing a comprehensive business plan to make the Postal Service viable so it would not become a liability to the American people. This plan was validated by outside experts. We stand behind this plan, and we are convinced it is the right approach.
Unfortunately, action by the Senate today falls far short of the Postal Service’s plan. We are disappointed that the Senate’s bill would not enable the Postal Service to return to financial viability. A strong Postal Service is important to the health of the entire mailing industry and the Postal Service’s ability to finance universal service for the American public.
Given volume losses we have experienced over the past five years along with expected future trends, it is totally inappropriate in these economic times to keep unneeded facilities open. There is simply not enough mail in our system today. It is also inappropriate to delay the implementation of five-day delivery when the vast majority of the American people support this change. Failure to act on these changes will ensure that the Postal Service’s losses will continue to mount.
We remain hopeful that Congress will ultimately produce legislation that will enable the Postal Service to return to financial viability.
Patrick R. Donahoe, Postmaster General and CEO of the U.S. Postal Service:
“We appreciate the hard work of the Senate in addressing postal issues, and we believe that there are important and valuable provisions contained in the legislation. We would have preferred the Senate allow the Postal Service to move further and faster in addressing its cost reduction goals.
Today, the Postal Service incurs a daily loss of $25 million and has a debt of more than $13 billion. Based on our initial analysis of the legislation passed today, losses would continue in both the short and long term. If this bill were to become law, the Postal Service would be back before the Congress within a few years requesting additional legislative reform.
The Postal Service does not seek to be a burden to the American taxpayer, and we believe such an outcome is entirely avoidable. The Postal Service has advanced a comprehensive five-year plan that would enable revenue generation and achieve cost reductions of $20 billion by 2015—restoring the Postal Service to long-term profitability.
The plan we have advanced is a fair and responsible approach for our customers, our employees and the communities we serve. We are hopeful that the legislative process will continue and that enacted legislation will put the Postal Service on a sustainable path to the future.”
WASHINGTON, DC—April 26, 2012—The U.S. Senate passed a postal reform bill intended to restructure the U.S. Postal Service. Printing Industries of America supports this bipartisan bill as a key step in preventing full-scale economic calamity for the nation’s mail system.
Co-sponsored by Senators Brown (R-MA), Carper (D-DE), Collins (R-ME), and Lieberman (I-CT), S.1789 is designed to preserve the USPS financially and sustain its operations moving forward. Specifically, the bill refunds the USPS billions of dollars in overpayments to the Federal Employees Retirement System, streamlines its structure and operations, adjusts an onerous retiree pre-funding requirement, and seeks compromise solutions on controversial issues like facility closures and Saturday mail delivery.
Along with its affiliates and member companies, Printing Industries of America pushed for postal reform without rate increases and with limited amendments and is pleased with the passage of this bill in the Senate.
“The private sector mailing industry employs nearly 8 million Americans and contributes $1.1 trillion to the U.S. economy annually. It is a linchpin of the economy,” stated Lisbeth Lyons, vice president of Government Affairs for Printing Industries of America. “Printers make up a large part of this industry and rely heavily on the USPS. A failure to take action could be devastating to the printing business, and we thank Senators for recognizing and acting urgently to avoid a full-scale economic meltdown of the nation’s postal system. In particular, the industry thanks the four champions and co-sponsors of this legislation for their leadership.”
Action on the issue now moves to the U.S. House of Representatives, where a separate bill is pending. Printing Industries of America urges swift action by the House on this issue to ensure a viable mail delivery system and the growth and success of the allied mailing industry.
About Printing Industries of America
Printing Industries of America is the world’s largest graphic arts trade association, representing an industry with approximately one million employees. It serves the interests of more than 10,000 member companies. Together with its nationwide affiliate network, Printing Industries delivers products and services that enhance the growth, efficiency, and profitability of its members and the graphic communications industry through advocacy, education, research, and technical information.
Source: Printing Industries of America.