Postal Reform Bill Passes House, Senate
The new bill contains two key elements that will likely lead to its success:
1. For the first time in U.S. history, the USPS will no longer be required to pay for postal employee pension costs for those employees who previously served in the military. The new bill would eliminate this.
2. The bill repeals the law that forces the USPS to make postal pension payments, which are unwarranted, to an escrow fund, effectively freeing up $78 billion over the next 60 years. This money instead will help keep postage in check, as well as cover retiree healthcare liabilities and postal debts to the U.S. Treasury.
Gene Del Polito, president of the Association of Postal Commerce and Catalog Success postal columnist, says there’s no downside with this bill. ’”There’s nothing worse than what we have today in the structure and regulations surrounding the USPS, he says. “The situation today is a surefire guarantee of a postal fiscal crisis in the very near term. There’s no way that under the current scheme the USPS could’ve survived given today’s marketplace.”
Once reformed for the first time since the Postal Reorganization Act of 1970, the Postal Service will “have to operate in a more businesslike manner,” Del Polito says. “It promises relief to the endless, very expensive and very litigious rate case process, and that should benefit catalogers enormously.”