Government affairs

Legislative Updates

Rep. Richmond’s POSTAL Act

On Feb. 1, Rep. Cedric Richmond (D-LA) reintroduced the Providing Opportunities for Savings, Transactions and Lending (POSTAL) Act, H.R 4422. Richmond’s bill calls for allowing the U.S. Postal Service to offer basic financial services, including checking accounts, small-dollar loans, interest-bearing savings accounts and money transfers. Under the POSTAL Act, USPS would be allowed to partner with private banks to offer these services. In addition, a “Postal Card” would be made available to serve as a debit card for postal banking customers.

According to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), nearly 68 million adults either do not have access to basic banking options or have access to limited services, a situation that often leads them to use payday lenders—who can charge exorbitant interest rates.

“Allowing USPS to offer small-dollar loans and transactions would save working families thousands of dollars,” Richmond said, “and reduce their dependency on predatory lenders.”

If signed into law, he said, this legislation would help solidify the fiscal future of the Postal Service while helping to provide a measure of financial stability to millions of unbanked Americans.

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