From National Association of Postmasters “eNAPUS Legislative and Political Bulletin”
NAPUS members anxiously fol-lowed the Senate deliberations on S. 1789, the Lieberman-Collins-Carper-Brown postal relief bill. Nobody said it would be pretty — and it wasn’t.
The 191-page bill puts the USPS on better financial footing than it currently finds itself. At the same time, S. 1789 provides a safety net to preserve universal mail service for postal-dependent communities.
One of the major issues the Sen-ate addressed at the outset, and will be raised again on the House side of the Capitol, is the Con-gressional Budget Office’s (CBO) irresponsible estimate that the postal legislation will have an impact on the federal budget. Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) provid-ed one of the most cogent critiques of the CBO’s projection, pointing out the only reason why S. 1789 “scores” is because the USPS deposits its rate-payer reve-nue in on-budget accounts. Fur-thermore, Collins underscored the fact that no taxpayer funds are generated though postal accounts and no postal expenses are taxpayer paid. Consequently, the Senate was able to waive a budget point-of-order raised by Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL), by a 62-37 majority. No matter which version of postal reform the House takes up, it will also have to grapple with arcane and unfair CBO analysis. The House PAYGO rules require bills that “score” to be offset by either spending cuts or revenue-raisers.
Generally, the major adopted Senate amendments fall into three categories: those that pro-tect post offices, those that mod-erate mail processing plant closings, and those that restrict post-al executive compensation. One other noteworthy adopted-amendment deletes the section of S. 1789 that would have re-quired the USPS to move away from door mail.
Moreover, the bill seeks to re-duce costs by encouraging retire-ment, providing cash or retire-ment credit. The goal is to re-duce the postal workforce by 18% through 2015.