McCaskill calls for six month moratorium on PO closings

Press release from Senator Claire McCaskill (D-MO):

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill is calling for a six month delay in U.S. Postal Service facility closures to allow time to implement cost-saving reforms.

McCaskill has joined a request to Senate leaders to approve legislative language preventing the Postal Service from closing any post offices or area mail processing facilities for at least six months, allowing more time for Congress to “enact reforms necessary” to potentially save those facilities.

“While we may have very different views on how to financially improve the postal service, we all believe that democratically elected members of the Senate and the House have the responsibility to make significant changes to the postal service,” McCaskill and her colleagues wrote. “Unfortunately, we are concerned that the postal service may preempt Congress on this matter by closing or consolidating nearly 3,700 mostly rural post offices, over 250 mail processing facilities, and eliminating overnight delivery for first class mail before postal reform legislation is enacted. While some of these changes may be needed, we believe that it is very important to give Congress the opportunity to reform the postal service in a way that protects universal service while ensuring its financial viability for decades to come.”

McCaskill is a member of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, which has jurisdiction over the Postal Service. Postal reforms supported by McCaskill, and approved by a Senate panel last month, would require the Postal Service to strengthen the public’s ability to appeal a closure and would prevent the Postal Service from closing rural post offices until it establishes clear criteria for determining whether a post office should be closed.

The text of the Senators’ letter appears below.

Dear Majority Leader Reid, Minority Leader McConnell, Chairman Inouye, and Ranking Member Cochran:

Everyone understands that the United States Postal Service (USPS) is experiencing significant financial problems today and that changes need to be made as the USPS adjusts to a digital world.

To address this serious problem, Congress is in the midst of significantly reforming the postal service. Several bills have been introduced in the Senate and the House on this issue. On November 9th, the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee passed the 21st Century Postal Service Act, S.1789, by a vote of 9-1. The House is also moving forward with postal reform legislation.

While we may have very different views on how to financially improve the postal service, we all believe that democratically elected members of the Senate and the House have the responsibility to make significant changes to the postal service.

Unfortunately, we are concerned that the postal service may preempt Congress on this matter by closing or consolidating nearly 3,700 mostly rural post offices, over 250 mail processing facilities, and eliminating overnight delivery for first class mail before postal reform legislation is enacted. While some of these changes may be needed, we believe that it is very important to give Congress the opportunity to reform the postal service in a way that protects universal service while ensuring its financial viability for decades to come.

Therefore, we respectfully ask that you include language in the next appropriations to prevent the USPS from closing or consolidating area mail processing facilities or rural post offices for the next six months. This six month moratorium will give Congress the time needed to enact reforms necessary for the postal service to succeed in the 21st century.

We look forward to working with you on this important issue. Thank you for your consideration.

  • Mike

    How about refunding that 75 Billion next Claire?

  • Craig

    Mr. Senator: Congress has done NOTHING to resolve the problems of the PO. They could if they wanted to! Instead of trying to make the PO stop closing offices, why not pass the bill by Lieberman, Collins, etc. Signing oppositions and “calling for things” is just smoke. Why doesn’t Congress uphold the Constitution and provide for a PO like the Constitution requires and what the senators swore to uphold when taking office. Away with complaints. Action senators, action!

  • Scout

    Yeah congress put it off another six months so management can keep abusing the employees.Get off your lazy butts and get this over with. You are driving the Americans and the employees of the USP circus nuts.

  • JimBob

    McCaskill’s proposal is a necessary measure to prevent the idiots in postal management from scuttling the USPS before more rational corrective measures can be taken.

    What we really need is a Postmaster General who is committed to saving the Postal Service rather than destroying it.

    The first step Congress should take toward that end is firing Donaho’ and his overpaid V.P.s, and replacing them with people who have that commitment. Throwing the workforce and our customers under the bus, and turning the USPS into nothing more than a conduit for direct mail advertising is not an acceptable “business plan,” nor does it fulfill our Constitutional mandate of universal service.

  • Ainkur

    When it comes to upper management, one hand washes the other (:-$
    And of course how could congress have had any time to do something with the postal problems….they have been such a well kept secret…I’m sure just another temporary band-aid will fix the problem…haha LMAO