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Legislative Updates

Resolution introduced in House to restore USPS’ service standards

On Wednesday, Reps. David McKinley (R-WV) and Paul Tonko (R-NY) introduced H.Res. 54, a resolution expressing the sense of Congress that the Postal Service should take all appropriate measures to restore the service standards that were in effect as of July 1, 2012.

H. Res. 54’s initial co-sponsors were Reps. David Joyce (R-OH), Marcy Kaptur (D-OH), Doug LaMalfa (R-CA), Cedric Richmond (D-LA), Linda Sanchez (D-CA) and Don Young (R-AK).

As a part of its “Network Rationalization Plan” over the last few years, the Postal Service has proposed service standard reductions resulting in the closure of hundreds of processing plants and reducing hours at thousands of post offices.

Prior to July of 2012, overnight service for First-Class Mail was the standard for most metropolitan areas and rural communities. But on July 1, 2012, the Postal Service began Phase 1 of its rationalization plan and, citing the need to save money, adjusted service standards so that overnight mail service was eliminated from most rural communities and severely reduced in metropolitan areas.

This year, on Jan. 5, USPS implemented Phase 2, which further adjusted service standards in such a way that overnight mail service was eliminated nationwide and that mail sent outside of its originating area was slowed even further. These service reductions are being realized ahead of a plan to close or consolidate 82 mail processing plants nationwide by the end of 2015.

“We commend Congressmen McKinley and Tonko and their colleagues for stepping up to help preserve service standards at the Postal Service,” NALC President Fredric Rolando said. “The agency cannot cut its way to prosperity—not when it has a constitutional obligation to provide timely and efficient service to business and residential customers nationwide. Reducing service standards is an unnecessary financial solution for a Postal Service that, in 2014, recognized an operating profit of $1.4 billion.

“Educate your legislators about what reduced service standards mean for all postal customers,” Rolando said, “and urge your congressional district’s representative to sign on to H.Res. 54.”

Fact sheet (to come) | Inspector General’s report

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