AIR CARRIAGE OF INTERNATIONAL MAIL ACT -- (House of Representatives - September 27, 2008)
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Mr. CLAY. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
S. 3536 would eliminate the Department of Transportation's international rate-setting authority and allow the Postal Service to contract with U.S. air carriers for international mail transportation rates and services.
The Postal Service currently spends well over $200 million annually to transport international mail, at rates set by regulation, not the marketplace. The current system for setting international mail air transportation rates is almost 30 years old and does not accurately reflect the cost of international mail carriage in today's highly competitive markets.
Both the GAO and the Postal Service Office of Inspector General support the end of DOT's role in setting international mail rates. Indeed, the bill has the support of the United States air carriers and the Postal Service and reflects the collaborative efforts of both groups to develop legislation they could embrace.
Allowing the Postal Service to negotiate and contract for the international air transportation of mail at fair and reasonable prices means approximately $50 million a year in savings. According to the Postal Service, ``roughly half of that savings would be passed through to the Department of Defense, which reimburses the Postal Service for the transportation of international military mail.'' As such, S. 3536 also enjoys the support of the Department of Defense Military Postal Service Agency and DOT.
I commend my colleague, Senator Carper, for his leadership on this important legislation. I also commend Chairman Waxman and Ranking Member Tom Davis for their strong support over the years to allow the Postal Service to obtain savings for postal customers and secure much more competitive mail rates.
In closing, I support the passage of S. 3536.
Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.
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