Thursday, March 07, 2013

Saturday mail delivery likely to continue through Sept. 30, maybe later

Saturday mail delivery appears likely to continue through Sept. 30, because it is included in a House-passed resolution to keep the government going until then. The House has been less supportive of continuing the requirement for six-day delivery, which the Senate included in a postal reform bill last year.

The bill passed 267-151, with a majority of Republicans supporting it and most Democrats voting against it. Some Democrats opposed the bill because of other spending measures, Tonda Rush, CEO and chief lobbyist for the National Newspaper Association, said in an email to NNA's Postal Committee.

"It is now much more likely, but not certain, that the six-day mail requirement will remain the law through 9/30 and part of the USPS delivery plan through end of the calendar year," Rush wrote. "Two things could happen to change that: enactment of sweeping postal reform legislation that allows USPS to move forward with its plans, or a decision by USPS to flout the law and move forward anyway, which is certain to prompt a lawsuit."

Postmaster General Patrick R. Donahoe wants to save $2 billion a year by limiting Saturday mail delivery to packages, a move he says would save $2 billion a year. USPS lost nearly $16 billion last year.

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