Obama's Plan To Save Postal Jobs Would Eliminate Saturday Mail Delivery

USPS avoid bankruptcy stopping Saturday deliveryThe U.S. Postal Service would eliminate Saturday delivery and postpone billions of dollars in payments to its retiree health-plan fund, should Congress approve an Obama administration plan to help the nation's mail carrier avoid bankruptcy.

The proposal, part of President Barack Obama's $3 trillion deficit reduction plan, would also allow the service to raise the price of a first class stamp to 46 cents from the current 44 cents without having to obtain regulatory approval.

"The plan would provide short-term relief for the postal service and take off the handcuffs to do some more of the structural reforms that are needed to get it on a more sustainable course," a senior administration official told media gathered for a briefing Monday, CNNMoney reports.

Eliminating Saturday delivery would save at least $2.5 billion a year once fully implemented, while the rate increase would bring the agency an additional $1 billion in annual revenue, Bloomberg reports.

In laying out the plan, the administration stood strongly against a proposal by the service to void union contracts and permit the layoff of some 120,000 postal workers.

The White House proposal would allow the agency to use $7 billion from it over-funded pension fund to instead offer employees buyouts and other incentives.

In July, the Postal Service announced plans to close 3,700 underutilized post offices and cut 5,000 jobs.

"We desperately need cash," Deputy Postmaster General Ronald Stroman told Bloomberg in an interview. "What the administration proposal does is give us a short-term infusion of cash."

Republicans lawmakers have criticized the president's plan, saying it does little more than bail out the Postal Service rather than mandate significant reforms.

Speaking to NPR News on Tuesday, Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe said that the Postal Service is struggling as Americans increasingly turn online to pay bills and communicate, resulting in a dramatic drop in the volume of first-class mail and agency revenues.


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Filed under: Employment News

David Schepp

Staff Writer

David Schepp has spent more than a dozen years covering business news for the electronic and print media, including Dow Jones Newswires, BBC News, Gannett Co., and most recently at AOL's DailyFinance. Nearly 10 years ago, he started writing a weekly People@Work column, looking in depth at issues facing workers in today's workplace. The syndicated column appeared in newspapers and websites nationwide before it made its debut on DailyFinance in 2010. Schepp now continues that tradition at Aol Jobs, covering the jobs beat and providing readers insight and analysis into the nation's challenging employment scene.

Schepp holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism from Metropolitan State College of Denver.

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SamM

Gina, I know what you are going through. I just recently went regular. I agree with you about the trials and tribulations of being a sub. Although a few bad ones slip through the cracks due to shortages of subs and not so great management, most work their butt off to make it to having benefits and stability. However, if you are that close to the top, no saturday delivery would probably make you regular quicker. Rural routes are based on 6 day delivery. If we went to 5 day, a new count and route evaluation would be needed for all and most routes would bust out creating excess in medium to larger offices thus creating extra routes in which the top subs would be promoted to fill those vacancies. More than likely, several PTF positions would also be created by the next few subs in line. Granted. The lower rank and file would probably not be getting many hours and we would also be put on a vacation seniority schedule like the ones city carriers and clerks have now. Personally I think this sucks but just my opinion because I have not experienced it. It is nice to be able to get off when needed now. I know more than one person would disagree with this assessment but I don't care. Something has to be done soon and we cannot continue to enjoy our good jobs without some sacrifice as long as it seems to work out somewhat fairly. I am not a big union fan and I know they want to take credit for all of the good things we have but none of the bad. They are partly responsible as well as mismanagement. We ALL work for the same company but many times we were understaffed for one reason or another and when I or someone else tried to do something simple such as move a cart out of the way or push a cart of DPS in or something minor, all hell was raised and people started screaming about grievances and in some instances some people were paid for jobs because a of union grievance they did not even do. It is difficult to get on at the post office but once your in, it seems like no random drug screening, (some) city carriers milking the clock as much as they can because they are paid hourly, During counts, people doing things they get timed for that they normally don't do all year. Supervisors trying to get rid of bad carriers but they cannot and they end up getting their jobs back with 9 months back pay. State union reps pulling down over 100 k. The list goes on, and on. There are many, many great people who work at the post office. Friends, family, etc, Probably 80-90 percent or more are good, honest hard working people trying to make a living while most on these boards are disgruntled ex-employees who could not hack it. Those that could not get on at all because they can't drive right or something else minor and those who generally don't have a clue what they are talking about. The small percentage of bad apples we have at the post office unfortunately make the headlines that most people believe we all are. WE are all partially to blame for this mess.

September 27 2011 at 10:02 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Gina

What many people fail to realize is that elimination of Saturday delivery will leave many relief carriers with little to no work. We're not just part time workers, we are paid by the postal service & pay union dues, just like a regular carrier. Many...like myself...have worked at the PO for years, and have built up to pretty much full time work. I have given my all to this job for the past four years, working without benefits & hoping for a regular position so I can see a doctor when I need to, and get paid when I take either a vacation or any other time off. Oh and speaking of time off?? Wow, I put in for a vacation once 5 months in advance to take a cruise with my daughter,that was a GIFT from my parents. It was not approved...unpaid time off, NOT APPROVED. But I've stayed at this job, sacrifices & all...because I like it...and I'm so close to the top of the list to make regular. If this no Saturday delivery goes through? I will not have enough hours to pay my bills, I will be lucky to work one day a week if I work at all. I will have no choice but to look for employment elsewhere. I am a rural carrier (relief), which means I use my own vehicle & pay for the costly wear & tear out of my own pocket (new front brake pads every three months & lets not even get started on tire expense) Whatever money we get to cover car expenses pays for gas, and not much more. Today was a perfect example, I ended up with a flat tire in the POURING rain, which I had to fix myself. The postal service doesn't send out help for you as a rural carrier, it's your responsibility to finish the route. If you can't? guess what...you don't get paid. Four years of invested time, and I may be forced to walk away.....stuck with a right hand drive jeep that I purchased & making payments on, a bad back & very bad shoulder. So THINK before you're quick to judge the över-paid postal worker. It's far from a cushy glamorous job, it's hard work & work that I really do enjoy. I know changes & cuts need to be made, but I find it hard to believe that there is no better solution than this. Thank you Nancy for defending the postal worker.

September 23 2011 at 8:26 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
kranmar9@aol.com

oops keep

September 21 2011 at 1:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
kranmar9@aol.com

Amazing how all the non postal workers have the answers:)
Yes...I did work for the postal service for 37 years,retiring as a postmaster
kepp using the service,my pension depends on ya'll

September 21 2011 at 1:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Nancy

Jim, I wasn't referring to delivery expenses of the postal service, I was referring to how much the postal workers have to do to get your mail to it's designated, place for delivery. And yes, I have walked in the real job economy as has my friends and family. I know all about the challenges of the non government and postal workers. I have had a lifetime of research on those jobs. I just feel the need to defend the postal worker for all their hard work through some difficult day to day, problems. Good luck delivering your own mail. I hope it works out for you and increases something in your life and decreases your sarcasim. Marie is right, How do you know what postal workers responsibilites and pay are??

September 21 2011 at 12:15 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jim

Mariel, did my research.

September 21 2011 at 12:05 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Mariel

Ha Ha Jim! It seems like you need to get "YOUR" head out of your butt and go find a higher paying job per your comment "Of course the rest of us with lower incomes and more responsibility will sit in our air conditioned offices with our fingers up our noses." and stop hating on postal employees. Justify that you have more responsibilities than a postal worker?? How do you know what their responsibilities and pay are??

September 21 2011 at 12:01 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jim

Nancy, what do delivery expenses of the postal service have to do with overpaid workers? Once you would like to walk into the real job economy I will hold your hand and help you understand the challanges of the non government and postal service employees. Yes, we work 10 or more hours a day and weekends to make ends meet. If we have benefits they are substandard and normally the costs exceed the benefits. Please take a jump into the real world and do your research on the every day worker. I would gladly deliver my own mail for what my mail carrier makes. It would reduce my hours and increase my benefits.

September 20 2011 at 11:58 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
jevans7188

There is a very simple business decision that would fix things going forward, we just need to summon the will to make business type decisions on this as any business would. Simply split each postal delivery zone in half, and deliver mail every other day mon thru sat.........then lay off half the workers, in years down the road the service gets even smaller then divide the zones into 1/3 rds and deliver every 3rd day mon thru Sat, with the commensurate layoffs once again, and all will be solved. This should be a business decision nothing more, as all lucid people recognize that the job landscape is and will constantly be shifting sands.

September 20 2011 at 11:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Steve

Should delete delivery on Monday not Sat.
Did business with USPS years ago, was asked to get bid to them, I asked where should I mail it -- their answer was fax, it now it would be e mail, how you destroyed your own operation.

September 20 2011 at 11:33 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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