Board of Governors Chairman and PMG To Release Plans for USPS Soon

Remarks by the Postal Service Board of Governors Chairman

and Postmaster General

The following comments were made by Postal Service Board of Governors Chairman Thurgood Marshall, Jr. and Postmaster General & CEO Patrick R. Donahoe during today’s open session meeting of the Board of Governors. Remarks as delivered may vary from prepared text.

Thurgood Marshall, Jr.

Chairman, Postal Service Board of Governors

“For the past several years the Board of Governors has sought legislation that would improve the Postal Service business model. We have emphasized that business-as-usual is unacceptable. The long-term financial stability of the Postal Service depends upon gaining greater flexibility to adapt to the changing realities of the modern marketplace. This can only be accomplished through legislative change coupled with aggressive actions by Postal management.

Last week the Senate passed legislation intended to reform the laws that govern the Postal Service. The Board of Governors followed those deliberations and the voting very closely.

We are keenly aware that the strong feelings that so many Americans feel about Postal issues can make the legislative process difficult. So we certainly know that the Senate leadership and the bill sponsors worked very hard to get the bill passed – and indeed we respect and appreciate their hard work.

Nevertheless, when we ask whether the legislation puts the Postal Service back on a path to financial stability, the bottom line is that the Senate bill does not provide the Postal Service with the flexibility and speed that it needs to have a sustainable business model.

Our financial condition has been deteriorating for several years, and we have been operating with a very low cash balance. Every day the Postal Service posts a loss of $25 million dollars.

We therefore strongly encourage the enactment of legislation that enables the Postal Service to avoid a default and return to long-term profitability.

In February the Postal Service published a comprehensive five-year plan. The plan that we developed was the result of countless hours of thought and analysis, including validation by outside experts who specialize in major and highly successful corporate restructurings. That plan would return the organization to sustained profitability. We remain unanimous in our conviction that this comprehensive five-year plan is a fair and reasonable approach for our customers, our employees and the communities that we serve.

The plan would better position the Postal Service to pursue vital and promising revenue opportunities and also achieve a cost reduction of $22.5 billion by the year 2016. Achieving this goal is critical because it would keep our costs below our projected revenues for the remainder of the decade. The Senate bill includes many hard-fought improvements but it does not enable all of the cost reductions that are necessary to return to profitability.

Within the framework of our comprehensive plan and in consultation with members of the House and the Senate, we have continued to refine our approach with regard to rural Post Offices. We have done so as a result of listening carefully to the views of our customers and the communities we serve.

In the coming weeks, the Postal Service will provide detailed plans describing the steps that it intends to take regarding rural Post Offices. We are committed to pursuing cost reduction strategies in a thoughtful way, and we believe these announcements will lay to rest many of the concerns about our path going forward.

The Board of Governors is committed to serving rural America and to preserving the role of the Postal Service in every American community.

We are also committed to strengthening the value of the products and services that we provide now and well into the future, continually making it easier for businesses to work with the Postal Service, and to invest in our future.

Contrary to some of the words being used to describe our intended path forward, we are going to approach our network realignment in a fair, measured and methodical way.

In closing, I would like to take one moment to express the appreciation of the Board of Governors for the tremendous job that our Postmaster General and Deputy Postmaster General have done, particularly over this past year.

The issues we have dealt with are contentious and sometimes difficult to resolve. The Postal Service leadership team has soldiered through an especially challenging period and shown great leadership and great dedication. They have the unqualified confidence and support of the Board of Governors as we move forward.

I would especially like to commend the Postmaster General for his excellent work in communicating internally and externally about the changes that we are implementing, the long-term future of the Postal Service and the future of mail. It can sometimes be tempting to focus solely on the immediate issues as they arise. Thankfully we have not fallen into that trap because the Postmaster General has tackled those immediate issues while also keeping our eyes focused on the long-term horizon.”

Patrick R. Donahoe

Postmaster General & CEO

“It’s certainly been a busy period for our entire leadership team. We’ve obviously been very engaged in educating about our comprehensive plan. And we’ve done so because it’s so important for the future of the organization.

I’ve talked to our employees and our customers recently – I’ve also had the opportunity to do some community meetings – and no one said “you don’t have a problem” or, that “you shouldn’t be acting to get the Postal Service on a firm financial footing.”

We hear plenty of opinions about how to move forward, but there is no doubt that we need to resolve our business model issues quickly.

I had the opportunity to speak at the National Postal Forum last month in Orlando and we had a lot of conversations with our customers. We had some great dialogue about where the mailing industry is heading and about how the Postal Service can help strengthen the value of mail in a digital age. There are a lot of promising developments in mailing and shipping, and the Postal Service needs to play a big role in helping shape that future.

However, I also heard a lot of concern about our finances and a lot of concern about the urgency in which to address them.

Businesses throughout America are looking at our troubling financial numbers and thinking about whether they want to continue to invest in mail as a communications channel. That type of thinking is troubling, and one that could have a devastating impact on our industry.

Our financial problems should not be seen as an indictment of the value of mail. The Postal Service continues to endure the negative effects of electronic diversion, combined with a weak economy, and a restrictive business model. If we had the flexibility adapt to shifting demand, we could be profitable today.

I’m convinced that legislation that enables the Postal Service to get back on a profitable path will start the process of rebuilding confidence in the mail and of greater investment in the mail. That’s why it’s so important for both the mailing industry and the Postal Service to quickly get these legislative issues resolved, then put them in the rear-view mirror and focus on the future.

We are very confident about our comprehensive plan. It calls for making some tough decisions, but they are the right decisions. We need to eliminate excess mail processing capacity. We need to rethink how we manage our retail footprint. We need to manage our healthcare costs better. If we can gain the flexibility to move quickly in these areas, we can return to profitability.

If we are unable to do these and other things, we risk becoming a permanent burden to the American taxpayer. Such an outcome is entirely avoidable with the right legislation.

By nature I’m a very positive person, and I believe we will get the legislation we need. We will continue to communicate with members of Congress about our plan, work with them to get legislation passed, and hopefully, we will have a new law by this summer.

Let me pick up on something Thurgood said about our approach going forward. Our first priority is making sure that we are focused on maintaining excellent service. That is the top priority of this organization.

As we inform our customers and employees of our plans, we will give them plenty of time to prepare. We will be methodical and measured on how we proceed.

We’ve made tremendous productivity gains and achieved unprecedented costs reductions through processes that are orderly for our customers and our employees.

Over the past few weeks I had a chance to visit with customers and employees in Helena, Montana, and Rockford, Illinois. I had some great discussions about our plans and about the realities we face.

My impression is that everyone wants clarity. They know we need to make changes because they can literally see the decline in mail volume. We’ll listen to our customers and make sure we’re providing what they need. We will work with our employees, as we have always done, to provide the information they need so they can make informed decisions about their options within the Postal Service.

We’ve reduced the size of our workforce by more than 250,000 people since the year 2000, and we haven’t had to use lay-offs. We are a responsible employer and we intend to stay that way. And, we always very aware of the great job our employees do every day.

Let me conclude by mentioning what a great job our employees have done recently in terms of service. Megan Brennan is going to walk through some of the recent scores for First-Class Mail…shipping… customer experience. They’re at all-time high levels. That’s the result of Megan’s great leadership, process improvements, and a big team effort throughout the organization.

We have also made some great progress around a number of operational metrics, such as improved tracking and other analytics. These areas are very important to our customers. I think this progress reflects the strong commitment throughout the organization to service, to competing for customers and for providing greater value. And I’m pleased to recognize Ellis Burgoyne’s leadership and the overall effort of Jim Cochrane and his team in this area. There are plenty of positive things going on in the Postal Service and in this industry. We need to address the issues that need to be addressed, namely legislation, and get the Postal industry focused on a positive future.”

32 thoughts on “Board of Governors Chairman and PMG To Release Plans for USPS Soon

  1. While you and I are worrying about whether we’ll retire or whether the APWU will be able to save our jobs, the following might interest you about something you have paid for with your union dues that you will be unable to enjoy like our union officers do:

    APWU Officers Qualified Retirement Plan is a 401k plan which has $55,398,175 net assets as of end of year, which is drastically more than the average for all Company 401k Plans. The plan has been in effect since 7/1/1971, and is a Multiple-Employer.

    The APWU Officers Qualified Retirement Plan’s 401k plan has 119 active participants , which is slightly more than the average for all Company 401k Plans. The APWU Officers Qualified Retirement Plan 401k plan has 102 retired or separated participants receiving benefits, which is drastically more than the average for all Company 401k Plans.

    So contact APWU today for a piece of their pie! You stewards should also contact them! Wonder why nothing is posted bout this on You didn’t know about this? You should ask bout it at the next union meeting. You should ask…and keep paying dem dues bruthas n sistas sos we can continue raking in the dough.


  3. I recommend early outs immediately across the board with $25 incentives, lets act on this immediately, if the Postal Service doesn’t have the money my rich wife and myself will flip the bill for the boys at the Postal Service, keep up the good work Donahoe

  4. Get rid of the Board of freaking Governors AND Donahoe! All they are doing is milking the system and playing the blame game on everybody else while they do it. Get real! But the lawmakers sure won’t. They’re in their own little la-la-land. I can’t wait until the elections. I think many of the dumbasses who are so confident they will return wil be so unpleasantly surprised when they see that the people who vote aren’t as stupid as they are~!

  5. stop the save the USPS talk, many craft employees want the VER, if not, we will stick it to the PMG and USPS, how is it a man who demeans the craft and who will shaft the EAS, can stand?, he sucks, a dead man walking, we all hate his guts, email the crap out of all those DC pigs, overload the network, miss all the scans you can, civil disobedience, MLK and Ghandi, at least it is a start, and violence later.

  6. There is a reason MCcain ai’t president, I mean besides Palin. He does’t get it. Must be nice to be married to a rich broad and say stupid shit and get re-elected.

  7. A total lack of leadership, vision and ability to direct this organization on the part of both Donahoe and the BOG. Serve the public, provide more services, provide transparent rate setting ASAP (make rates cover costs of handling (Hello!), rid the organization of layers of bureaucracy, (including failed BOG), and provide for a consumer advocate to represent the public’s views. This ain’t rocker science!

  8. 2012 2:57 am

    Its amazing to me that a Congressman Darrell Issa is more powerful than 62 senators…(1789) and 229 Congressman(Hr1351)…man that guy spits in their presence…he must be one bad dude the rest of congress must have NO BALLS

  9. no one mentioned the paea fiasco that is the real cause of the po’s financil situation. 5.5 billion/ yr.

  10. Reality must be dwelt with if the USPS is to maintain existence in some form, USPS cannot exist under present operation mode in the 21st century as physically using the USPS to physically deliver a message to a physical address is history. Ever increasing advances in communication has made using the USPS as the communicator in delivering messages is history of the 20th century.
    Politicans use the USPS to attempt to gain favor by pressure groups in playing politics instead of facing reality that small community post officies that have no service justification to exist is wasted cost as many officies have Postmasters with salaries of $66000.-$72000. and in many instances have no delivery and outrageous salaries are paid to sell stamps and box mail. Many of the no longer needed officies are within 5-6 mile radius of each other and a higher level office is in the town these officies surround.Management from headquarters to local officies must reduce management positions. Bottomline employees must be reduced and an early out with no penalty as approved by OPM would be cost effective. 6 day physical street delivery is not necessary as the USPS is not used to communicate via personal or business if there is an electronic mail diversion means available. 6 day street delivery is a wasted cost using 292,000 vehicles and the fuel cost necessary to operate. Delivery workhour cost is a waste as the need to provide 6 day delivery service is not in demand or requted by the American public. Corporations such as Medco Drug Co. uses USPS to deliver prescription drugs as USPS is cheapest means to deliver their product which increases Medco revenue geneartions or earnings and decreases USPS revenue as the cost rato exceeds the revenue generated. USPS operating at a 5.1 billion dollar loss year to date and politicans keep playing POST OFFICE rather than taking necessary actions to move toward operating cost effective. Demand for USPS SERVICES IS DECLINING AND WILL CONTINUE TO DO SO. USPS services exceed demand which with no cost reduction results in massive monatary loss. Politicans should subsidize if they want to keep the USPS dangling as a puppet for their political ploy.

  11. let’s start the plant closings…. incentives to retire…..
    5 days in 2 years….. we will still be alive in 20 years if we act now.
    let’s roll…………….

  12. Megan Brennan,Ellis Burgoyne and Jim Cochrane why aren’t one of these people in charge of the post office and get rid of the outdated PMG postion?

  13. This is just calculated posturing to get the house to vote. Nothing here, no worries, business as usuall. we will become federalized. Tax payer bailout! Why else do we need money to pay back the 13 billion?!

  14. i think the ‘mass postal’ poster had it right when he/she posted
    “blah blah blah.” i never seen so many words used to say
    *ucking absolutely nothing. both thurgood marshall and pmg donahoe are clueless bureaucrats that are only able to keep their job in a
    gov’t bureaucracy because they have no accountability. i am more convinced than ever that donahoe is a habitual or pathological liar as the dribble
    that spews from his piehole has little relationship to the facts or the truth.
    case in point about donahoe. in this wordy, meaningless press release donahoe says, ” Our first priority is making sure that we are focused on maintaining excellent service. That is the top priority of this orginization.” wow! really? how can maintaining excellent service be donahoe’s top priority when his transformation
    plan is all about cutting service and reducing service standards for first-class mail? i guess donahoe thinks if he gets up and lies to the people enough times and tells them that he will maintain great service, then some of the fools out there
    might actually start to believe donahoe and not educate themselves with the facts. the facts are donahoe’s transformation will destroy the SERVICE in the united states postal service and lead to a revenue decline that many have aptly named the “death spiral.” donahoe’s service slashing transformation plan will lead to the very thing that liar donahoe claims he wants to prevent and that is a government bailout.

  15. yea that’s it Marshall give Donahue a pat on the back maybe he’ll split his bonus with you, oh you probably had that worked out already. Rhonda you are right we don’t need a postmaster at every little station give them a geographical area to cover and let the clerks run the office as most do now anyway. These two windbags have thrown out more bullshit in these two letters than any others since this all started. they claim to know that this is going to save billions, they said that 2 years ago when they instituted the pilot programs in the MVS craft, it didn’t save any money in our instalation, but gave the drivers more OT than ever, we know how that worked out.

  16. Mr. Marshall, as a Postal Governor should be aware of that fact that the USPS is in financial trouble because of the manipulation by the Republican party. Your job is to protect the service for the citizens of the United States and not to destroy and institution created by the Constitution. You should be removed from office as you have failed in your duties! As Chairman of the Board you should also be aware that millions of Americans still need the Postal Service to perform as it has as well as thousands of businesses that are happy with the service they have received.
    All this trouble has been caused by a handful of large mailers who have become wealthy with the lows rates the Postal Service has had for many years. The pigs at the trough are trying to get more than the share they need by ending the postal unions and taking money from the pockets of the postal employees. You sir should be ashamed of yourself for your incompetence!

  17. the closing of the rural offices does not benefit the postal ser that much,and when you close a plant the cost of transportation is great, you took our mail and sent it to another plant and ever day the mail is screwed up and we have to transport it to other offices get the truth out the transportation cost is going to be greater than what you are saying. management does not care aBOUT THE AMERICAM PEOPLE

  18. wheres the 33 billion the gov. stoll from us. that was put there by postal worker, since 06. sorry your not making enough money we have to close you down. they milked us dry and now there blaming us. spare me.

  19. what a crock of shit! congratulate the pmg on a great job he has done? LMFAO! he is a buffoon that is running us into the ground!—hey donuthole…great job!

  20. If there is any common sense, give the VER, most Postal Craft workers, have to live daily with threats and intimidation from the “should be Hung like Saddam Hussein “Supervisors and Postmaster and any management, we hate our bosses, would like to put their heads on poles like Vlad the Impaler, we hate, hate , hate …
    that imbecile they call the Postmaster general, too late for this place, Privatize, please for all of us “Gone Postal” craft, Privatize now !

  21. All right everyone up against the wall…just give me my 25k and nobody gets hurt!!! By the way thank you very much !!!

  22. Stop telling each other how wonderful you are and get rid of most of the people that never touch the mail. Keep the rural offices open when that’s the only glue that holds the community and their small businesses together, and consolidate (if you must ) in the larger cities, where the impact wouldn’t be as great. Make the medium/small rural Postmasters be in charge of several offices instead of just one, as the clerk(s) can run the offices on a day-to-day basis in a much more cost-effective way. Stop “sponsoring” entire programs on TV. C’mon – why are you making it so frickin’ difficult, cuz it’s not.

  23. Postmaster general needs to be fired.and half of postal management needs to be FIRED!!!! Leo clerk usps.

  24. Blah Blah Blah, Talk Talk Talk, Enough Letters…..Do it already….Do something….earn that 800K or 400k !

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