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Tech publishers group blasts USPS exigency rate increase

Trade Group will Explore Options to Appeal or Limit this Unjustified Increase in 2014.

siia_logoWashington, DC, January 09, 2014 –(PR.com)– On December 24, the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) voted 2-1 to approve an exigent, or “emergency,” postage rate increase of 4.3 percent, the full amount requested in September by the U.S. Postal Service (USPS). This increase is to be applied in addition to the CPI increase of 1.7 percent, totaling a 6 percent increase for periodicals. In response, SIIA President Ken Wasch issued the following statement:

“We remain very disappointed that the PRC has continued to ignore the lack of discipline, efficiency and overall fiscal responsibility of the USPS, and instead chose to place a continued and unjustified rate increase on the B2B industry. While the PRC at least had the good judgment to reject the USPS request to make this a permanent increase, we will begin 2014 assessing the opportunities to appeal or further limit the duration of this harmful increase.”

The Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA) is the leading trade associations representing technology, digital content, media and information companies, including those that publish business-to-business industry magazines and newsletters. Our membership is comprised of more than 700 members who publish more than 600 print periodical titles and mails approximately 800 million magazines and newsletters each year, representing approximately 15% of the periodicals class within the US Postal Service. In addition, SIIA members utilize first-class and standard mail extensively and collectively spend an estimated $260 million in postage each year. In November, SIIA submitted comments to the PRC outlining reasons why the exigent increase should not be approved.

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PBS Newshour video: Is the postal service going the way of the pony express?

The U.S. Post Office announced that the price of a first class stamp will rise from 46 to 49 cents in late January. Rising costs and diminishing usage may endanger future of mail delivery. Canada is phasing out urban delivery service in the next few years.

Read more: Is the postal service going the way of the pony express? | PBS NewsHour | Dec. 29, 2013 | PBS.

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PRC approves exigent rate increase- but only temporarily

prcThe Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) has approved the US Postal Service’s request for an “exigent” rate increase (to 49 cents for a one ounce letter) to make up for revenue lost due to the recession. Because the rate hike is related to a temporary economic fluctuation, however, the rate increase is also temporary. How temporary? The PRC doesn’t say. However, the decision requires the USPS to develop a plan for rescinding the rate increase as soon as it has recovered the “lost” income. The PRC says that will happen within two years.

Here’s the PRC summary of its decision: Read More

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Video: Sen. Tammy Baldwin talks postal reform at Quad/Graphics

MILWAUKEE (WITI) — Stamp prices are about to spike again, and while it’s a pain for the average person — it could be an even bigger problem for Wisconsin employers.

That’s why Sen. Tammy Baldwin is trying to rally support for a big change to the postal reform bill.

On Wednesday, December 4th, she met with leaders at Quad/Graphics — one of the biggest printers in the state.

They say if postage prices continue to climb, it’ll be the start of a chain reaction.

Read more: Sen. Tammy Baldwin talks postal reform at Quad/Graphics | FOX6Now.com.

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PRC Approves USPS Rate Increase; Implementation of Full Service IMb Remanded

prcWashington, DC -Today, the Postal Regulatory Commission issued its decision in Order 1890 on the Postal Service’s request to increase prices January 26, 2014. The Commission determined that the rates proposed by the Postal Service are consistent with the law, provided that the Postal Service does not implement Full Service IMb requirements concurrently with the proposed increased rates.

Full Service IMb requires each piece of mail, each bundle, and each pallet to have a unique identity barcode. The Commission determined that Full Service IMb mail preparation requirements are a classification change and that its effects must be included in its calculation of the percentage change in rates. Read More