WASHINGTON, D.C. – In a letter to Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe, Congressman Sanford D. Bishop (GA-02) asked the United States Postal Service to stand by its original commitment to keep postal processing facilities open until next spring. In late March, the Postal Service unilaterally decided to accelerate closure of about fifty mail processing facilities across the country.
“We urge you to recognize the disastrous impact that the elimination of overnight delivery standards and closings of Area Mail Processing Centers and other facilities across the country would have on local and national unemployment,” the bipartisan group of members wrote. “The USPS is a major employer around the country and employs over 500,000 workers. With an unacceptably high unemployment rate, it would be particularly inopportune for the USPS to close facilities.”
Forty-six Members of Congress joined Congressman Bishop in detailing the harm these closures would have on their local economies. The letter advocates a comprehensive approach to postal reform that ensures the Postal Service will stay financially solvent for many years to come.
The full text of the letter is as follows:
Patrick R. Donahoe
United States Postal Service
475 L’Enfant Plaza SW
Washington, DC 20260
Dear Postmaster General Donahoe,
We write to urge you to maintain operations at all mail processing facilities as originally reported to allow Congress to take action on postal reform legislation. We believe it would be imprudent of the United States Postal Service (USPS) to close or eliminate processing of mail, at any facility, ahead of schedule as installations were committed to remain intact until spring 2014.
We understand that the USPS cannot sustain itself under its current system, and we agree it is up to Congress to act. However, management’s unilateral decision to advance the closing of mail processing centers around the nation would severely limit Congress’ ability to take action.
In addition, we urge you to recognize the disastrous impact that the elimination of overnight delivery standards and closings of Area Mail Processing Centers and other facilities across the country would have on local and national unemployment. The USPS is a major employer around the country and employs over 500,000 workers. With an unacceptably high unemployment rate, it would be particularly inopportune for the USPS to close facilities.
Again, we urge you to follow through on your original time frame to allow Congress time to develop comprehensive postal reform legislation that would take meaningful steps to create a financially sound future for the USPS, while leaving intact the important services Americans rely on and expect. It is critically important the postal service not preempt Congressional action by unilaterally moving forward with elimination of overnight delivery, allowing for major shutdowns across the country of mail processing facilities.
Thank you for your consideration of this critical issue. We look forward to continuing our work to create a more stable fiscal future for the USPS while also upholding this essential service for our communities, states, and the country.
Sanford D. Bishop, Jr.
Rosa L. DeLauro
Yvette D. Clarke
Pete P. Gallego
Raúl M. Grijalva
Alcee L. Hastings
Carolyn B. Maloney
Edward J. Markey
James P. McGovern
Michael H. Michaud
Bill Pascrell, Jr.
Donald Payne, Jr.
Bobby L. Rush
Adam B. Schiff
Allyson Y. Schwartz
Robert C. “Bobby” Scott