Representative David Price (NC-04) responded to today's announcement that the United States Postal Service (USPS) is ending 6th-day delivery services by saying the decision should be a "reform of last resort," not an initial step in ensuring the Postal Service's long-term viability. Rep. Price called on Republican House leaders to join a bipartisan Senate effort to reform the USPS.
"It's not clear the Postal Service has the authority to implement this change without Congressional approval. I believe cutting service days should be a reform of last resort, and that we can reform the Postal Service and ensure its viability without drastic jobs cuts or service cuts," Rep. Price said. "The previous Congress saw the Senate pass legislation reforming the Postal Service's backbreaking $5.5 billion a year pension mandate. Congress imposed this mandate, and House Republican leaders should join the bipartisan Senate effort to reform it so service cuts are not necessary."
In the previous Congress, Rep. Price cosponsored legislation, similar to the Senate bill, that would have provided immediate relief to pension obligations imposed on USPS by a 2006 law. That bill stalled in the House. Under current law, the Postal Service is required to pre-pay $5.5 billion a year (until 2016) into a fund for future retiree health care costs. The legislation would also have reimbursed the Postal Service for overpayments it made into the Federal Employee Retirement System for employees who earned federal government retirement benefits while the service was still a government agency. Under the bill, the reimbursement amount would be determined by an Office of Personnel Management study. The Senate-passed bill stipulated that USPS was only authorized to eliminate 6th-day service after exhausting all other reform measures included in the bill.