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Senators Urge House to Pass Postal Bill

The House is expected to move its bill before the summer recess. The House measure, written by Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), differs from the Senate measure in that it would establish a control board to implement cost cutting initiatives and quickly downsize the Postal Service.

“We believe the Senate bill ... takes a better approach,” the letter said. “Under the Senate bill, the Postal Service would use the same kinds of retirement-incentives that private industry uses to restructure and voluntarily ‘right-size’ its workforce, to reduce the postal workforce over a period of 3 years by 18 percent, or roughly 100,000 positions, eventually saving $8 billion per year. The bill also establishes an orderly and predictable process for achieving a more optimal network of post offices and mail processing plants, requiring involvement of local communities to ensure that essential postal services are preserved.”

Issa and other opponents of the Senate bill have said that the measure merely delays the difficult decisions that must be made to make Postal Service fiscally sustainable.

Today from his Twitter account, Issa pointed to an editorial in USA Today that argued that the Senate bill “ducked some of these unpopular steps.”

“Nothing pleasant about ... closing post offices. But alternative is forcing taxpayers to subsidize a bloated system that operates at a loss,” Issa said via Twitter.

Meanwhile, the four Senators wrote to Donahoe, urging him to extend the moratorium and give Congress more time to reform the Postal Service.

“We look forward to working with the House of Representatives and the Postal Service to enact final legislation in the coming months,” the Senators said. “We are writing to ask that, in the interim, you follow the intent of the Senate with respect to the closures of post offices and processing facilities and that you extend the current moratorium to cover closures that would not be permitted under [the Senate bill] until Congress has an opportunity to finalize legislation in the near future.”

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