- Berkshire County eschews greenback for own currency — BerkShares
- Hagel warns Pakistani leaders of U.S. aid losses over drone-strike protests
- Florida authorities ban autistic boy from owning therapeutic chickens
- Defendant in Lee Rigby machete murder trial: ‘I love al Qaeda’
- Obama lied about Syrian chemical attack, ‘cherry-picked’ intelligence: report
- MSNBC host: Obamacare a ‘wealthy white men’ racist word
- Democrat thwarts Nevada activist’s try to name peak after Reagan
- Congress ready to extend ban on plastic firearms
- Rogue reindeer runs from Santa, eludes police for hours
- Iran touts new laser that bolsters missile accuracy
Postmaster asks for flexibility
The move by the U.S. Postal Service to a five-day delivery week would close just a fraction of the $20 billion shortfall already facing the nation's mail service, Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe told the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs on Wednesday.
While labor unions sharply criticized any move to cut Saturday mail, Mr. Donahoe said it was necessary as postal officials confront a rapidly changing population that no longer uses the mail to pay its bills.
He also said Congress needs to give the Postal Service more flexibility to operate like a business, allowing it to operate its own health care plan while easing a costly legislative mandate to pre-fund retiree health benefits.
“Time is of the essence, and with each day that passes without enacted postal reform further impacts the Postal Service’s already dire financial condition,” he said.
Perhaps in a nod to polling numbers that Mr. Donahoe said show most Americans understand the cut to Saturday mail delivery, lawmakers at the hearing didn’t mount much of a challenge to the plan despite unions opposition.
“I would obey the law and wouldn’t do it,” Mr. Donahoe said in an exchange with Sen. Carl Levin, Michigan Democrat, who questioned whether the Postal Serve had the legal authority to cut Saturday mail as the postal chief proposed last week.
Another critic of the move, Sen. Jon Tester, Montana Democrat, said cutting mail services could hurt rural residents in Montana.
“The first thing we’ve done is cut service, and I think that’s the worst thing to do,” he said.
But a key Senate Democrat withheld any opposition to the move. Sen. Thomas Carper, Delaware Democrat and chairman of the committee, said in prepared remarks that members of Congress need to “show a willingness to accept change” and help Mr. Donahoe implement “a reasonable plan for reform.”
“But based on the data I’ve seen, we have never been closer to losing the Postal Service,” he said.
The appearance of two leading House lawmakers from opposite parties pushing for postal reform raised hopes for a bipartisan bill this legislative session.
Mr. Cummings, the ranking Democrat on the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, testified to the Senate panel on the need for postal legislation along with his Republican counterpart, committee Chairman Darrell E. Issa of California.
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
- Solaria? Solyndra? Feds bailed on promising solar company, lawsuit says
- Last call: State Dept. bought $180,000 in liquor before shutdown
- Federal prosecutors drop charges against defendants who disappeared
- Bankrupt energy company probed
- Wage nominee at Labor also works for AFL-CIO
Latest Blog Entries
By Brahma Chellaney
Beijing's creeping aggression signals a challenge to U.S. presence in the Asian Pacific
- CURL: Obama tells a whopper on IRS scandal
- Tech companies call for an end to NSA online snooping
- WOLF: The president's other Obamacare lies
- Satanists petition for statue at Oklahoma Statehouse
- Lawmakers see 'false narrative' of Obama as a terrorist fighter
- Obama lied about Syrian chemical attack, 'cherry-picked' intelligence: report
- MSNBC host: Obamacare a 'wealthy white men' racist word
- U.S. pilot scares off Iranians with 'Top Gun'-worthy stunt: 'You really ought to go home'
- Ted Cruz sees legal landmines ahead for Obamacare
- Bill OReilly reminds: Nelson Mandela was a communist
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
A politically conservative and morally liberal Hebrew alpha male hunts left-wing viper
Taking a deeper look at the undeniable connection between mind and body from a writer and speaker on matters of health, and a practitioner of Christian Science.
An objective, analysis-based perspective of D.C. sports as seen through the eyes of lifelong D.C. sports enthusiast, John Heibel.
Find the latest news and happening that effect those in the Washington D.C., Northern Virginia and Maryland Metro region.
White House pets gone wild!
Let it snow