NAPUS President Robert Rapoza Testifies Before Senate Committee

Today, National Association of Postmasters of the United States (NAPUS) President Robert Rapoza called for the U.S. Postal Service and the Congress to implement meaningful strategies to generate the revenue necessary to sustain the continuation of a universal postal system. In addition, Rapoza urged Congress to enact meaningful legislation to relieve the agency of an unfair retiree health burden imposed by Congress in 2006. Providing such relief would enable the nation’s Postal Service to continue to provide a universal and affordable postal system. The text entire text of the testimony can be accessed here. The hearing, in its entirety, may be viewed by linking on C-SPAN.

Before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, the NAPUS president, who represents the nation’s Postmasters stated: “Revenue generation must be the primary focal point of legislative relief.” Rapoza continued that the Postal Service must “focus on revenue growth in all areas to help it retain its viability.” In his testimony, President Rapoza pointed out that the growing parcel market offers the Postal Service an important opportunity to raise funds: “The Postal Service must not simply ride the wave of the accelerating growth in the parcel market, but must capture a significant share of it.” He went on: “Post offices and their Postmasters must be able to adapt and innovate to meet this growing segment of the mail market. Indeed, post offices are uniquely situated to provide a secure, affordable and accessible point for parcel preparation, acceptance and delivery.” Rapoza concluded his reference to parcels by pointing out: “The physical presence of post offices provides a major competitive advantage” for the Postal Service.

NAPUS also highlighted another area in which the Postal Service may increase revenue. Governmental agencies, such as the Social Security Administration and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, are beginning to use government cash cards as an alternative to paper checks and direct-deposit. Post offices are uniquely positioned to provide a location for the distribution of paper and direct-deposit alternatives for income transfer programs, government annuities and disaster assistance. Postal employees are experienced in residency validation and identity verification. Rapoza stated, “The local post office could easily verify identity and be the location where such cards are reloaded.”

President Rapoza also called for Congress to remedy the unjust retiree health benefits prefunding requirement that is imposed on no other public or private entity in the United States. “One of the most damaging impediments to postal sustainability is the failure to address the unfair statutory requirement that the Postal Service prefund, within a limited 10-year period, 75 years of retiree health benefits.” Rapoza illustrated this fact in stating that “about 70% of the Postal Service’s recent losses are tied to this prefunding requirement.”

President Rapoza reaffirmed that NAPUS “joined with the Chairman and members of this committee in promoting S. 1789, the bipartisan and consensus postal relief bill” from the previous year. He concluded his testimony by pledging that NAPUS will assist the Chairman and the committee to ensure the U.S. Postal Service, the greatest and most efficient postal service in the world, continues to provide the products and services that Americans expect and deserve.

Read more: NAPUS.