APWU President Cliff Guffey will testify before the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs on Feb. 13 about “Solutions to the Crisis Facing the U.S. Postal Service.”
“I will tell members of the Senate Committee that they have a solemn duty to save the nation’s mail system,” the union president said. “The future of the Postal Service is in their hands.
“The Postal Service is in danger of financial collapse,” the union president noted, “but the cause of its financial difficulties are often misunderstood.”
“Congress must get to the root of the problem — the 2006 law that is pushing the Postal Service to the brink of bankruptcy,” he said. The Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act imposes a burden on the USPS that no other government agency or private company bears. It requires the Postal Service to “pre-fund” the healthcare benefits of future retirees and forces the USPS to pay for a 75-year obligation in just 10 years — at a cost of more than $5 billion annually.
The same law prohibits the USPS from raising postal rates to cover these exorbitant costs, Guffey noted.
“The demise of the Postal Service is not inevitable, as some people suggest,” Guffey said. “Congress can fix this.
“The Postal Service needs financial stability in order to provide service to all of America’s citizens and adapt to the nation’s communication needs in the digital age,” he said.
Other witnesses scheduled to testify are:
Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) – Chairman of the House Committee on Government Reform
Rep. Elijah Cummings – Ranking Minority Member of the House Committee
Postmaster General Patrick R. Donahoe
Comptroller General Eugene L. Dodaro – Government Accountability Office
Jeanette P. Dwyer – President of the National Rural Letter Carriers Association
Robert J. Rapoza – President of the National Association of Postmasters of the U.S.
Joe Quadracci – Chairman, President and CEO of Quad/Graphics, Inc.
R. Richard Geddes – Associate Professor at Cornell University, who advocates postal privatization.