Cummings Introduces Legislation to Return Postal Service to Profitability
Washington, DC—Today, Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, Ranking Member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, introduced legislation to return the U.S. Postal Service to long-term solvency and sustainability. The Innovate to Deliver (I2D) Act of 2013 (H.R. 2690) would address the agency's financial challenges through innovative structural changes.
“Our job in Congress is to enact comprehensive legislation that will keep the Postal Service running by offering products and services that meet the ever changing demands of consumers while providing customers with timely and convenient access to these services,” Cummings said. "My legislation would enable the Postal Service to act more like the business it was meant to be by increasing flexibility while ensuring that revenue from mailing rates meets expenses."
Cummings’ bill would strengthen the Postal Service by:
- Creating a new Chief Innovation Officer position charged with leading the development of products and services that enable the Postal Service to capitalize on new business opportunities.
- Authorizing the Postal Service to develop new sources of revenue by providing expanded non-postal services, such as check-cashing, new technology and media services, warehousing and logistics, and public internet access.
- Requiring that each class or type of mail bear the direct and indirect costs attributable to it.
- Requiring the Postal Service to ensure that total costs do not exceed total revenues and, beginning two years after the date of enactment, prohibiting members of the Board of Governors from receiving their $30,000 salaries for any year following a year in which costs exceeded revenues.
- ·Modifying the Retiree Health Benefits 100% pre-funding requirement by amortizing payments over 40 years, requiring the Postal Service to fund 80% of the liability owed, folding the $11.1 billion in defaulted payments into the amortization schedule, and delaying future payments until 2017.
- Permitting employees of the Postal Service to receive additional service credits as an incentive to retire early. Employees under the Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) would be offered one year of additional service credit, while those covered under the Federal Employees’ Retirement System would be offered two additional years of service credit.
- Requiring OPM to recalculate the surplus within the Federal Employees’ Retirement pension system using postal-specific assumptions rather than the government-wide assumptions currently used, and making a one-time return of excess funds to the Postal Service to pay down existing debt while directing future surpluses to pay down liabilities within CSRS and to Retiree Health Benefits payments.