Saturday mail delivery will live on
The Postal Service pulls the plug on its controversial plan, saying the stopgap budget passed by Congress gave it no choice.
Some businesses, such as banks and insurance companies, that need to keep customers informed, postal unions and members of Congress opposed the move, which was proposed in February and was expected to save the cash-strapped USPS $2 billion annually. Parcel service would not have been affected.
The postal service's board of governors decided Tuesday to change course because Congress left it no other choice, according to the paper.
Whether the USPS will push the idea again isn't clear, nor is the impact this decision will have on the precarious finances of the USPS, which has tried to end Saturday delivery for years. It had planned to eliminate more than 22,000 jobs as part of the move. In the first three months of its current fiscal year, October-December, it reported a loss of $1.3 billion. Traditionally, that period has been the Postal Service's strongest financial quarter because of the holiday mailing season.
Several things, including the declining demand for mail service, are crushing the USPS. Congress has required it to pre-fund retiree health benefits for 75 years, a staggering cost that's expected to top $100 billion by the end of the decade. No other public- or private-sector employer has that type of burden. Some USPS critics, though, have argued that the prepayment issue is overblown.
The USPS also is clearly bloated. Fewer than half of the country's 32,000 post offices are profitable, and the organization is slashing the number of mail processing centers it operates by more than 50% by 2014.
Follow Jonathan Berr on Twitter @jdberr.
why does the post office have a pension plan they have to fund.
Gee if Fed Ex or UPS had to do that they would be out of business.
Pension plans went out the door in the 1980's this is 2013
the USPS needs to go into bankruptcy and cut the dead weight it's pension plan.
My ex-brother-in-law worked for the post office and got up to like $90,000 just sorting mail for his area to go out to post offices in his town (Dallas) and he gets $70,000 plus fully paid medical insurance from his pension plan.
He retired after 30 years.
The economics of that will rightsize the USPS.
This is terrible news. I look forward to the day when postal deliveries are made twice each week--Tuesday and Friday, say, or perhaps Monday and Thursday.
The arguments of the insurance and bank industries have trouble with the smell test. Only a fool would have a financial instrument (bill, statement, check) delivered to them via USPS, due to compromised security. As for the insurance folks, just what can't wait four or five calendar days? Even Social Security is preparing to cut loose all citizens who can't or won't do electronic delivery.
Of course it's inconvenient (and an added expense) to have to print out statements and invoices on your own dime. But it sure beats having your identity and money stolen.
I worked for the postal service for 4 years - which was a horror story in itself - so I don't get why the government dictates what it can and cannot do. They're not part of the government. Back in the '90's or so, they became self-supporting and received no funding from the government. The main reason they're in trouble now is because the government is dictating to them they have to fully fund their pension plan for the next 75 years. How about congress doing that for themselves? How about doing that for social security and medicare? I think the postal service should be privatized because they would be more efficient, but I don't agree with what the government's doing to them.
I do not understand this, if they can save money by not delivering on Saturday, then don't deliver on Saturday. Plan ahead and it won't matter. So we will continue to let them bleed money and take postage more expensive and wonder why we send things by email, or any other electronic method possible.
People sure are jeolous of government workers.Too bad those jeolous people weren`t
smart enough to get jobs like that themselves.
MONTANA 10:Apparently you didn`t read the other posts.I saw all kinds of jeolousy
in their posts.Besides, I like Saturday delivery.I get lots of dividend checks.
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