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TPA Sends Letter on USPS Reform to House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform

on February 06, 2017

TPA sent the following letter to the House Committee on Oersight and Govenrment Reform:

February 2, 2016

Dear Members of the 115th Congress and Staff, 

The Taxpayers Protection Alliance (TPA), representing the millions of Americans across the country who embrace a sensible and fiscally responsible federal government, call on Congress to ensure that new efforts in reforming the U.S Postal Service (USPS) are executed in a sound and constructive manner for all who use and are impacted by the USPS.

The USPS posted a $5 billion loss last year.  This was on top of the tens of billions of dollars worth of losses over the last decade.  For years, meaningful Postal Reform efforts have been continuously discarded in favor of cursory and timid legislative attempts that were intended to appeal to a much more divided Congress. Looking ahead, like-minded leaders now enjoy a prime opportunity to advance noteworthy changes to the agency that has been consistently plagued by mismanagement while struggling mightily to deliver value to the people it was meant to serve.

Coalescing the following principals within the next Postal Reform legislation will not only prove to be navigable politically, but will also provide the ideal changes to put the agency on a long-term sustainable path.

Financial management – despite the USPS benefiting from $18 billion in indirect annual subsidies, it continues to be in a downward spiral financially through year-end losses totaling more than $50 billion in the last ten years and amassing $101 in unfunded liabilities. The USPS must be subject to structural changes that will reduce its extensive debt that could expose taxpayers to a bailout.

Attention to USPS’s core function of delivering mail – a key element of fiscal reconfiguration lies in the importance of the USPS limiting its operational attention to services that are consistent with its original mission. This requires the USPS to concentrate its efforts on efficient and reasonable cost delivery of letter mail across the country. This serves the dual purpose of narrowing the USPS’ balance sheet to reflect its most profitable lines of business and limiting the agency’s risk within delivery markets that are more dynamic and competitive.  

Emphasize performance – diversions from the core standard and First-Class mail classes into non-essential lines of business like grocery delivery have negatively impacted the costumers who rely on a more traditional mail system. Setting and meeting better performance metrics, especially in the wake of years of precipitous declines, is important for USPS to restore the confidence of millions who lean heavily on the mail system for personal and commercial use, and to adequately serve vulnerable populations like those in rural areas.      

Maintain vigilance – as a highly visible arm of the federal government it is incumbent upon the USPS to be an alert steward across all of our communities. This means that the agency must be required to become more thoroughly up to code in ensuring that hazardous and illicit materials are not transported through the mail system. Given that the right technologies exists, the USPS must coordinate better with law enforcement agencies to limit the dangers facing the USPS and its customers.   

While finalizing legislation will have a significant impact on the USPS, the reality remains that the agency will still require astute day-to-day leadership in handling a broader assortment of matters that will impact quality and affordability of service for American consumers. Because of this, it will also be prudent for President Trump and Congress to affirm new members to the USPS Board of Governors who have a depth of experience in running a large organization in a fiscally accountable manner.

Ultimately, for the incoming Administration and Capitol Hill leaders, the solutions that the USPS desperately needs are well within reach. If you or your colleagues have any questions or wish to discuss this matter, please feel free to reach out to TPA president, David Williams at davidwilliams@protectingtaxpayers.org.

Thank you for your consideration.

  
Sincerely, 

David Williams
President 
Taxpayers Protection Alliance



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