White House: Postal Service Plan to End Weekend Delivery Would Save $20 Billion


us-postal-serviceThe Obama administration’s plan to rescue the U.S. Postal Service would allow the agency to end Saturday mail delivery and sell non-postal products, according to documents released today.

The plan, introduced alongside a deficit-reduction package, also would restructure a massive annual payment to prefund retiree health benefits and refund $6.9 billion the mail carrier says it overpaid into a federal retirement fund.

The White House says its plan would save the Postal Service more than $20 billion in the next few years.

Many lawmakers in Congress back five-day mail delivery, but the plan’s proposals still could face opposition. Republican Darrell Issa has refused to consider revamping the prepayment or returning retirement fund money.

Issa, chairman of the House of Representatives Oversight Committee, offered an amendment on Monday that he says brings the savings in his USPS bill to more than $10 billion per year through cuts and restructuring.

Lawmakers in Congress have agreed on the need to overhaul the agency, but several bills take different approaches. Issa’s plan, which allows USPS to override contracts and cut the workforce, could spark arguments in Congress when a subcommittee takes up the bill on Wednesday.

The Postal Service has watched its core business of delivering mail erode as consumers send email and pay bills online. The agency has said it needs to downsize drastically or it will be unable to deliver mail by the end of next summer.

“The administration recognizes the enormous value of the U.S. Postal Service to the nation’s commerce and communications, as well as the urgent need for reform to ensure its future viability,” the White House document states.

The Postal Service relies on revenue from stamps, packages and other services, not tax dollars, to fund its operations. The agency lost more than $3 billion last quarter.

The agency expects to default on the $5.5 billion retiree health payment due at the end of September unless Congress provides relief. Lawmakers have indicated they want to extend the due date for the payment.

Issa’s bill would end Saturday mail and set up groups to close facilities and cut costs if the agency misses payments. The amendment doubles the amount the agency would have to save by closing processing facilities and phases out delivery to front-door mail slots.

{Yahoo News/Matzav.com Newscenter}


  1. Fine with me. Nobody any more sends letters anyway. It’s all bills, junk mail and an occasional chasanah invitation that’s too big to fit in the mailbox.


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