PIA Hails Passage of Top Legislative Priority—Postal Reform
WASHINGTON, DC—December 11, 2006—The Printing Industries of America (PIA) today hailed this weekend’s passage of H.R. 6407, the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act of 2006, approved by both the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate in the final hours before both chambers adjourned the 109th Congress sine die on December 9, 2006.
Passage of comprehensive postal reform legislation was PIA’s number one legislative goal this Congress. PIA is a co-founder of the Coalition for a Twenty-First Century Postal Service, a bipartisan coalition of business, industry, and labor groups that led the fight for updating the nation’s postal laws.
“PIA commends lawmakers for finishing the job on comprehensive postal reform before adjourning the 109th Congress,” said Michael Makin, President and CEO of PIA. “The printing industry is a primary sector of the ‘mailing economy,’ along with publishing, paper, direct marketing, retail, financial services, and other industries. Altogether, the mailing economy employs almost nine million workers and represents nearly nine percent of U.S. GDP. Passage of postal reform will allow this vital segment of the nation’s economy to remain viable and successful in the years to come.”
H.R. 6407, the first major overhaul of the United States Postal Service (USPS) in three decades, calls for a ten-year cap on postal rates and the tying of those rates to the Consumer Price Index. Capping rates is key to providing businesses, including printers, affordability and predictability in relation to postage increases. The legislation also provides financial reforms to enable the USPS to better meet its employee benefits obligations and management reforms designed to improve service performance and create efficiencies within the organization.
“As the final hours of the 109th Congress ticked away, the fate of postal reform legislation truly hung in the balance,” said Lisbeth Lyons, Vice President of Government Affairs. “The printing industry owes a huge thank you to the Senate and House leadership for pushing completion of this effort to modernize the country’s postal system. PIA especially thanks Senators Collins, Lieberman, and Carper and Representatives Tom Davis, Waxman, and McHugh for their dogged determination and persistent leadership on the issue of postal reform over the past several years.”