Deficit Commission’s Final Recommendations Includes USPS And Changes To FEHBP, Retirement

The National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform released its final recommendations today. The Commission recommends changes to the Federal Health and Benefits Program, Military and Civil Service Retirement and giving the Postal Service  more flexibility to manage its operations. On another note, the Commission claims that USPS received a $4 Billion bailout which is incorrect.  


The Postal Service has run multi-billion dollar losses since 2007, and in 2010 maintained an operating deficit of $8.5 billion, even after receiving a $4 billion bailout from Congress the previous year. With the dramatic expansion of electronic mail, the volume of traditional air-mailed items will continue to fall, only worsening these enormous budget shortfalls and requiring even more federal funding in the future. To put the Postal Service on a path toward long-term solvency, the Commission recommends reversing restrictions that prevent the Postal Service from taking steps to survive – such as shifting to five-day delivery and gradually closing down post offices no longer able to sustain a positive cash-flow.
Create a federal workforce entitlement task force to re-evaluate civil service and military health and retirement programs and recommend savings of $70 billion over ten years.

Military and civilian pensions are both out of line with pension benefits available to the average worker in the private sector, and in some cases, out of line with each other across different categories of federal employment. The Commission recommends a federal workforce entitlement review to analyze civil service and military retirement programs in order to 1) Make program rules more consistent across similar programs, and 2) Bring both systems more in line with standard practices from the private sector. The review will have a ten-year savings target of $70 billion; recommendations of the task force would receive fast track consideration in Congress. Examples of program design reforms that the task force should consider include:

Use the highest five years of earnings to calculate civil service pension benefits for new retirees (CSRS and FERS), rather than the highest three years prescribed under current law, to bring the benefit calculation in line with the private sector standard.
(Saves $500 million in 2015, $5 billion through 2020)

Defer Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) for retirees in the current system until age 62, including for civilian and military retirees who retire well before a conventional retirement age. In place of annual increases, provide a one-time catch-up adjustment at age 62 to increase the benefit to the amount that would have been payable had full COLAs been in effect.
(Saves $5 billion in 2015, $17 billion through 2020)

Adjust the ratio of employer/employee contributions to federal employee pension plans to equalize contributions.(Saves $4 billion in 2015, $51 billion through 2020)

Mandatory Savings: Cut agriculture subsidies and modernize military and civil service retirement systems, while reforming student loan programs and putting the Pension Benefit Guarantee Corporation on a sustainable path.

Pilot premium support through FEHB Program.
(Saves $2 billion in 2015, $18 billion through 2020)
The Commission recommends transforming the Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) program into a defined contribution premium support plan that offers federal employees a fixed subsidy that grows by no more than GDP plus 1 percent each year. For federal retirees, this subsidy could be used to pay a portion of the Medicare premium. In addition to saving money, this has the added benefit of providing real-world experience with premium support.

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8 thoughts on “Deficit Commission’s Final Recommendations Includes USPS And Changes To FEHBP, Retirement

  1. reduce the amount of supervisors inany unit and you will have a surplus. It is not necessary for small post pffices who have less than 100 employers to have 5,6,7,10 supervisors. STOP the frivolus spending.

  2. Leave my retirement system alone.
    This is why I have put in 35 years.
    How about changing the rule and let everyone retire with 30 yrs.
    Iam 52 and have 35 yrs…..

  3. Like most politicians I spend millions of dollars for a job that pays a few hundred grand a year.Then you idiots ask us how to save money.

  4. It”s amazing how they compare with the ‘private sector.” The last 30 or so years has saw our manufacturing base shipped overseas, now they want us to be a service industry economy. When the model that’s put forth is part-time,low wage , no benefit jobs, the only way not only the Postal Service, but the country, is going is back to 1910, to the days of the coal barons, robber barons and sweatshops. I wouldn’t be surprised if some of four illuminati are for repealing the Thirteenth Amendment and legalizing slavery again to save on “labor costs”. There are two ways to compete in this so-called “global economy”, either raise the standards of third world countries, or lower our standards to theirs. It looks like they favor the latter. Being they beleive this is the way to go, why not part-time postmasters, supervisors and PCES executives? After all, we’re looking to cut costs, so this ideashould be accepted, but I don’t think the “top talent ” would like it. lastly, how does the powerful term “bailout keep appearing? The people who supported the Postal Reform Act are admitting it was a mistake?

  5. Funny they don’t say anything about downsizing the government or touching their golden egg benifits.

  6. Keep your DAM hands out of our POCKETS.All politicans schould be made to pay for your healthcare,and your salaries schould be cut by 50%.You are a bunch of thieves and liars…..

  7. What’s a little 4 billion dollar oversight? Congress doesn’t need the facts. If the rich don’t start pinching the working class a little harder, these tough economic times could someday impact them. Even the US middlemen who have made a killing moving industry to China will someday find themselves on the outside looking in.
    If you think about it, this country has been as badly managed as the postal service over the previous 40 years, and the solution is the same…..screw the working people.

  8. They keep saying that because the private sector are getting the shaft so should everyone else. It was announced today that congress has refused to extend unemployment benefits to those whose benefits have expired after the 99 weeks. Republican and some conservative Democrats blocked passage. I wonder how many of these people are veterans? We don’t support veterans when it comes to money. Only words. Sen. Brown from MA. said I’d like to help, I really would, BUT……. LOL. What a bunch of phony’s. I’d like to put Sen. Brown and his family out in the cold for even just a couple hours. Then maybe he could relate.

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