Last week, the U.S. House passed a postal reform bill that reduces government spending while strengthening the U.S. Postal Service, which provides a critical service for all Americans. The Postal Service Reform Act (HR 3076) passed by a wide margin with strong bipartisan support from both Republicans and Democrats.
Now, the bill heads to the Senate, with a rare bipartisan opportunity for lawmakers to reform the Postal Service, save taxpayers’ money and support the rural communities, seniors and small businesses who rely on affordable and reliable package delivery.
The Postal Service Reform Act represents exactly what’s needed for the Postal Service to forge ahead and enable USPS to deliver on Postmaster General DeJoy’s 10-year strategic plan. It improves service transparency and relieves USPS of unfair financial burdens imposed on it by Congress years ago. Moreover, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO), concluded that the Postal Service Reform Act will save the federal government $1.5 billion dollars over 10 years.
One of the most important pieces of the legislation is the codification of the Postal Service’s integrated delivery network and 6-day delivery of mail and packages together.
Seniors depend on the Postal Service for prescription delivery, and small businesses get products to their customers with the Postal Service’s affordable prices. It’s especially important in rural America where the Postal Service is often the only carrier. In more than 50 percent of zip codes, Americans face higher surcharges from private carriers, who prioritize high profits over service. Over the past year, private carriers like UPS have touted their plans to choose which customers they service, selecting only the most lucrative. Private carriers then dump rural customers and leave the Postal Service to actually deliver on the last mile.
Throughout the pandemic, postal workers have reliably delivered everything from medications, essential goods, family letters and holiday gifts to citizens across the country. While storefronts, restaurants and other businesses put physical operations on pause due to the onset of COVID or surges in variant cases, door-to-door delivery services never stopped. Now the Postal Service is also tasked with delivering the free COVID tests that more than 60 million American households have requested.
All of this is made possible by the 6-day integrated delivery network, which the Postal Service Reform Act would codify into law. It’s a simple and efficient service that all Americans know and love.
As a former member of Congress, I can say from experience there are very few opportunities for conservatives and liberals to team up to save taxpayers money and pass widely lauded reform for a cornerstone American institution.
This bill is a rare win-win scenario. Rural residents, seniors, small business owners and consumers across the country are counting on the Senate to quickly pass the Postal Service Reform Act and strengthen the vital delivery services Americans rely on.