Fighting the Good Fight: Say “No” to Postal Rate Increase

By on July 26th, 2010

By now you’ve heard all about the pending rate increase.  If the Postal Regulatory Commission allows this rate case to happen (which by the way is over 10 times the amount allowed by law), I predict you will see a major slide in mail volume and a major slide in the economy. To date, I don’t believe that Congress has made this connection.

mailboxIf you go to the Affordable Mail Alliance website, you’ll see a list of those supporting an end to this madness.  Take a look at the “Value Chain” and understand how your business–and even your town–will be affected.  Paper manufacturers, printers, ad agencies, mailing companies, high tech, and the list goes on will all suffer from the lack of mail. The USPS should be improving its business model and reducing costs, not increasing rates that will ultimately cause a decrease in mail.

Senator Susan Collins of Maine has spoken out and gone on record that this rate hike is not within the guidelines governing the USPS. Her formal statement can be found here.

Call the Postal Regulatory Commission: tell them to reject unfair rate hikes: 202-789-6800.

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    6 Responses to “Fighting the Good Fight: Say “No” to Postal Rate Increase”

    1. Aiea Copy Center Says:

      The volume of mail will continue to fall, but I think it’s a reach to think that will cause a major slide in the economy

    2. WendyV Says:

      I agree with the statement in the blog about the USPS improving their business model before hiking postage rates.
      Think of any business that consistently provides poor customer service, whose employees have an adversarial relationship with their clientele, who has terrible PR problems (“going postal” is slang for a shooting spree), and combine that with constant price increases and reductions in business hours/available services, (not to mention increasingly draconian requirements for business mail) and what do you suppose would happen to that business?
      The postal service has created a business model that depends on their customers being willing to change their (the customer’s) processes in order to continue to do business with the post office. In some cases customers are willing to do this if the benefits are clear, but with regards to the post office, it doesn’t feel worth it.
      Any business with these problems would go under, and it is unsurprising that the postal service is having financial woes.
      Customers are demanding and receiving a bigger voice with regards to their vendors, and the USPS has simply not responded to this demand satisfactorily.

    3. wendy R Says:

      What bothers me most we are all doing more with less now a days but not the goverment. Customers and publishers are not going to able to pay much higher costs for mailing their magazines this will lead to a huge impact to the economy. Printing as most people know employ many who depend on these customers and publishers to live.

    4. Mark H Says:

      There is not a single postal service anywhere in the world that will move a 1oz piece of mail as far as the USPS for as little as they currently charge or for what the proposed rate will increase it to. What is strangling the USPS is not the infrastructure, but the union negotiated retirement benefits.

    5. Elizabeth Gooding Says:

      There have been many research reports showing that the USPS is a global leader in service and, as Mark H says, at a lower cost. The problem today, in addition to the way that retirement benefits need to be accrued, is that the USPS is a government entity that does not control its own destiny. They have recommended headcount reductions and many other changes, but Congressmen and Senators are not going to vote for job cuts during a recession. If you have a lower volume of business and are not allowed to adjust your fixed costs – you’re stuck in a downward spiral. If you don’t want to see postal increases, you need to let your representatives know that you won’t hold them accountable for job losses at the USPS.

    6. Elizabeth Gooding Says:

      I finished making the post above and had an email in my inbox from Ben Cooper at ThePrintCouncil.org on this very topic. It contained the following information:

      • On July 6th, the USPS filed for a rate increase before the Postal Regulatory Commission for an across the board 5.6% increase, with larger increases for certain classes of mail including periodicals, nonprofits, some catalogs and small parcels.
      • The Postal Regulatory Commission issued a report that the USPS has overpaid the Civil Service Retirement System by as much as $55 billion dollars.
      • On July 21st, the House Oversight Subcommittee on Federal Workforce (oversees the USPS) approved legislation to “correct” an overpayment by the USPS into the federal Civil Service Retirement System.
      • The USPS will soon begin bargaining with two of its four major unions. These unions currently have “no layoff” and “no cross training” clauses in their contracts.

      “While the Print Council continues to work with USPS on joint marketing efforts, the Postal Service is a federal entity that responds to political pressures. These political pressures are behind the rate increase request as well as limiting the USPS’s ability to take the kinds of dramatic actions with facilities and employment that it would otherwise take.”

      The Print Council is also suggesting that we make our voices heard on this issue and has additional information available on how to get involved politically. They clearly feel that this issue will have dramatic ramifications for the print industry.