Letter Carriers’ 2014 Annual Food Drive collected 73 million pounds of food

WASHINGTON, June 17, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The annual food drive of the National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC) collected almost 73 million pounds of food to help restock food banks, pantries and shelters around the country – an impressive result made all the more necessary by the slow-paced economy recovery and recent natural disasters.

The effort on Saturday, May 10, gathered 72.5 million pounds of food – the 11th consecutive year the NALC drive has surpassed 70 million pounds of food collected. Several local NALC branches still are compiling their figures.

This year’s results bring the total to more than 1.3 billion pounds since the national drive began in 1992. Continue reading Letter Carriers’ 2014 Annual Food Drive collected 73 million pounds of food

NALC: Fact-checking The Washington Post’s ‘Fact Checker’

NALC-LOGO

June 16, 2014—The Washington Post’s “Fact Checker,” Glenn Kessler, has challenged on his blog the statement by NALC that the Postal Service’s plan to end Saturday would eliminate 80,000 jobs.

Sadly, Kessler has made a hash of it.

Kessler argues that the NALC’s statement is misleading, because the data our statement relies on is from a 2010 Postal Service presentation about a 2009 study (he posted slides from that presentation). Kessler also argues that fewer jobs would be lost, that many of those are part-time jobs, that most of the job loss would be through attrition rather than layoffs, and that the NALC is relying on an outdated study.

Continue reading NALC: Fact-checking The Washington Post’s ‘Fact Checker’

NALC blasts PMG for endorsing highway budget scam, misleading Congress

NALC-LOGOJune 14, 2014—Earlier this week, Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe recklessly endorsed the House of Representative’ leadership’s outrageous ploy to use massive job and service cuts in the Postal Service to “pay for” a short-term extension of the Highway Trust Fund, which will run out of money in August if Congress fails to raise the gas tax that normally funds it or to come up with an alternative source of revenue.

The proposal, the brainchild of the outgoing House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA), would use the alleged saving of eliminating Saturday mail delivery to offset the cost of a temporary injection of taxpayer funds into the trust fund to keep highway maintenance and construction projects going for a few more months.

The plan, which appears to have failed to gain enough support to advance in the House, was widely panned in Washington as a transparent gimmick that relied on averting a hypothetical taxpayer bailout of the Postal Service in the future.  It was also a massive failure of leadership. Our nation deserves a serious long-term solution to our highway infrastructure crisis, but the House of Representatives refuses to govern.

The criticism did not stop the PMG from lending his support to the scheme.

NALC President Fredric Rolando denounced the PMG’s move and issued the following statement:

“Mr. Donahoe’s action may be the most irresponsible thing any Postmaster General has done since the creation of the Postal Service in 1970. If allowed to succeed, this budget gimmick would have set a terrible precedent for the Postal Service. Why raise taxes or reduce spending at taxpayer-funded agencies, when you can pay for pet projects with legislated service cuts at the Postal Service? Need a new aircraft carrier? Slash post office hours. Want a new fleet of planes to fight forest fires? Raise postage rates. The PMG recklessly risked undoing all the hard work we did in the late 1980s to get the Postal Service off-budget, to shield the Postal Service and ratepayers from scheming politicians like Rep. Cantor. The PMG owes every postal employee and every postage rate-payer an apology.”

The Postal Service did not just offer rhetorical support for the House GOP plan. It spent the week distributing grossly misleading “fact sheets” to Congress about the effects of eliminating Saturday delivery.

The NALC and our allies in the other unions and in both parties in Congress fought back with fact sheets and communications of our own.

There was never any support in the Senate for the Cantor highway trust fund proposal, and according to a story by Congressional Quarterly, opposition in the House now seems to have killed the idea altogether.

But President Rolando warned NALC members to remain vigilant:

“We may have defeated this gimmick, but we must also ensure that the six-day mandate is renewed in next year’s House appropriation bill. The next few weeks will be decisive on this front as well; we will need every member to fight to save the Postal Service from politicians who want to dismantle it. It’s a shame that postmaster general has made common cause with the dismantlers instead of working with us and other stakeholders to advance consensus reforms that will strengthen the Postal Service, not weaken it.”

Rolando: Results reconfirm the steady improvement in USPS’ finances

NALC-LOGOFrom the National Association of Letter Carriers:

Following today’s release of the U.S. Postal Service’s financial statement for the second quarter of Fiscal Year 2014, which covers January, February and March, NALC President Fredric Rolando released the following statement:

The Postal Service today reported a quarterly operating profit of $261 million, which brings the operating profit for the first half of fiscal 2014 to more than $1 billion. Driving the quarterly performance were the 8 percent jump in package revenue and—in a turnaround—the 1.6 percent increase in letter revenue.

These results reconfirm the steady improvement in the finances of the Postal Service, which has been operating at a profit since October 2012. Rising online shopping has sparked a jump in package revenue, while a gradually rebounding economy has stabilized mail revenue. That’s why the USPS forecasts a $1.1 billion operating profit this year.

Given these positive trends, it would be irresponsible to degrade services to the public, which would drive away mail—and revenue—and stop the postal turnaround in its tracks. Lawmakers shouldn’t dismantle the postal network that is profitable in meeting the needs of an evolving society.

Instead, legislators should address the factor that is causing 100 percent of the losses—the congressional mandate that the Postal Service, alone among all public agencies and private companies, be required to pre-fund future retiree health benefits.

We will be glad to work with lawmakers and the postmaster general to develop a comprehensive plan that strengthens the existing networks while addressing the unfair pre-funding obligation so the Postal Service, which is based in the Constitution, can continue to provide Americans with the world’s most affordable and efficient delivery network without a dime of taxpayer money.

Unions urge NO vote on latest Issa bill

apwulogoMay 6, 2014 – The presidents of the four postal employee unions – the APWU, the National Association of Letter Carriers, the National Rural Letter Carriers Association and the NPMHU – have written to members of the House of Representatives, urging them to vote against a postal bill drafted by House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-CA). The bill is scheduled for consideration by the committee on Wednesday, May 7.

“We write on behalf of nearly 500,000 postal employees who live and work in every Congressional District in America to urge you to oppose the so-called ‘Administration’s Postal Reform Act of 2014,’” the presidents wrote. “If you serve on the Oversight and Government Reform (OGR) Committee, we ask that you vote against the legislation on Wednesday. If you do not serve on the committee, we urge you to express your opposition to the bill.”

“The legislation drastically reduces service,” said APWU President Mark Dimondstein. “It ends Saturday mail delivery and promotes contracting out of retail services — including in outside retail establishments. It fails to protect service standards, and fails to address in any meaningful way the cause of the Postal Service’s manufactured financial crisis,” he said.

“Our organizations are committed to working with leaders in both parties to strengthen the Postal Service,” the letter says. “Unfortunately, the bill before the OGR Committee on Wednesday would severely weaken it. We urge your strong opposition.”

Click here for a summary of the bill.

Read more: Vote NO on Issa Bill | APWU.