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Senator Bernie Sanders Statement on Postal Service Bill

bernieWASHINGTON, Aug. 2 – Sen. Bernie Sanders today issued the following statement on a Postal Service reform bill introduced late Thursday in the Senate that could end Saturday and door-to-door mail delivery and close mail processing plants:

“While I have a great deal of respect for Sens. Carper and Coburn, the Postal Service bill that they introduced is significantly weaker than the bill that passed the Senate last year with 62 votes. That makes no sense. Over a short period of time, the Carper-Coburn bill will allow the Postal Service to shut down over half of the mail processing plants in this country, end Saturday delivery and even deliver mail fewer than 5 days a week.

“In the midst of a severe recession, this bill would lead to the elimination of tens of thousands of decent-paying jobs – many of them held by military veterans. That is why I have introduced the Postal Service Protection Act with 28 cosponsors, a bill that would sustain the Postal Service, avert unnecessary closures and save American jobs. Similar legislation introduced in the House by Rep. DeFazio now has 166 cosponsors.

“The Postal Service is an institution of enormous importance to the American people. It must be preserved and protected. About 80 percent of the financial problems of the Postal Service are the result of an unprecedented and onerous mandate that forces it to pay 75 years of future retiree health benefits over a 10-year period.

“While we all understand that the Postal Service is experiencing financial problems today and that changes need to be made, providing fewer services and poorer quality is not the way to save the Postal Service. That is why I am strongly opposed to this legislation.”

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Occupation of post office thwarted

From Portland Communities and Postal Workers United :

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Dozens of protesters rallied and attempted to occupy the Main Post Office on NW Hoyt this afternoon.  The protest against postal privatization was thwarted by a heavy presence of Department of Homeland Security police, Postal Inspectors and a half dozen postal managers standing inside the post office lobby.  Senior plant manager, Lisa Shear, herself a target of the protest, came out to warn activists that she would have them immediately arrested if they stepped foot inside the lobby. 

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Video: Update on the Privatization of the U.S. Post Office

Postal activist Jamie Partridge on “A Growing Concern”

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The End of Saturday Service? BPR Looks at the Fate of the USPS

On Wednesday the Postmaster General of the United States Patrick Donahoe announced the end of Saturday delivery — or so it seemed. It turns out the USPS needs congressional approval to cut service.

According to Steve Hutkins, who runs the blog Save the Post Office, the Postmaster’s announcement amounts to the proverbial "trial balloon." Postal unions reacted strongly, as did lawmakers and members of the public.

Read more, and listen to the audio interview: The End of Saturday Service? BPR Looks at the Fate of the USPS | WGBH News.

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PMG expected to make a major announcement on USPS restructuring Wednesday

Update: According to the Associated Press, the announcement will be the end of regular Saturday mail deliveries.

pat-donahoe-largeLast month the USPS Bord of Governors directed the Postmaster General to accelerate the restructuring of USPS operations in response to the service’s precarious financial situation. The PMG has scheduled a press conference at USPS Headquarters for Wednesday at 10 AM EST to make a major announcement regarding those restructuring plans.