The Postal Service could save millions if it renegotiated leases set to expire that are above market rate, an Oct. 23 USPS inspector general report says. The Northeast Area spends more than $184 million annually to lease more than 3,300 facilities, the report (.pdf) says. Auditors identified 1,762 of 3,389 leases in which the service is possibly paying above market rate rent. USPS could save $6.6 million if it renegotiated facility rates or closed facilities for 250 of those leases that are set to expire in the next two years and are above market rates.
The Postal Service proposed a way to streamline its process of implementing major changes by shortening the time its review board has to weigh in. Under postal law, USPS must request an advisory opinion from the five-person regulatory panel before it can make changes that would have a nationwide impact on service levels. The frequency of USPS requests for advisory opinions has increased in recent years, the statement notes.
The Unites States Postal Service will offer all non-career employees health insurance in a move to comply with the Affordable Care Act, a USPS press release says. USPS employs 35,000 non-career employees, USPS spokeswoman Sue Brennan said. That represents about 7 percent of the 495,000 total USPS employees.
Lawmakers can make modest reforms to the Postal Service soon or be left with only severe options later, Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe said April 19. By the end of 2017, taxpayers might have to spend $58 billion to prop up the Postal Service as its debts accumulate, he said.
The Postal Service has the authority to adopt its proposed new delivery schedule even if the next continuing resolution doesn't provide specific language allowing it, says Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.
Information the Postal Service collects to develop new rates, estimate stamp use and help prepare its budget is unreliable because of continued noncompliance with prescribed policies and procedures, says the service's inspector general.
The Postal Service would be better poised for a long-term sustainable financial future if it increases revenue through improving logistical support for international small business commerce and cuts expenses by going green, say the service and its inspector general. It saved more than $52 million in 2012 through reduced consumption of energy, water, fuel and other resources.
The Postal Service will undertake cost saving measures and service changes in 2013 to increase available revenue, says Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe.In his State of the Postal Service presentation, Donahoe said on Jan. 24 the service remains "in a very tenuous position as far as cash on hand" because Congress has not passed legislation to aid the Postal Service.
The Postal Service should turn to non-traditional products to help future funding shortfalls but it will need congressional support, say reports from the agency's office of inspector general and the General Accountability Office.
Wages will go up for 180,000 letter carriers though they will pay higher costs for health insurance according to a new contract decided by a three-member arbitration panel. However, the award also lowered the entry wage for letter carriers hired on or after Jan. 12, 2013