Lawmakers said Thursday that they will have a Postal Service reform bill done by the end of the year.
Postmaster General Patrick R. Donahoe spoke before the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Thursday and outlined the need for the agency to be given the authority and flexibility to work toward financial stability.
Click here to read the entire testimony.
Earlier this week, USPS leaders announced proposed mailing price changes, including a 3 cent increase to mail letters.
Last week, Donahoe told a U.S. Senate committee that the organization's cash liquidity remains dangerously low. He is seeking legislation that will enable the Postal Service to change its operations and close a $20 billion budget gap by 2017.
Over the past two years, the Postal Service recorded roughly $20 billion in net losses and defaulted on $11.1 billion in retiree health benefits payments to the United States Treasury.
Donahoe said the Postal Service will default on another $5.6 billion retiree health benefits payment that is due Sept. 30.
According to Government Executive, health care for USPS employees was a main focus of the discussion Thursday.
"Proposals to shift postal retirees away from the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program to Medicare to cut health care costs remained a sticking point, with Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe insisting any legislation require all eligible retirees enroll in 'wraparound' Medicare packages," according to the article.
Click here to read that entire article.
According to the transcript of Donahoe's testimony, he said that it is very important for the USPS to have its own health care plan or to have the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program or federal Office of Personnel Management work with the USPS to negotiate integrated health plan choices specifically designed for the Postal Service.
"We want to work with this committee to establish an effective—and sustainable—health care program for our employees and retirees," he said. "We want Senate bill 1486 to include a clear mandate for the Postal Service, [Federal Employees Health Benefits Program] and [Office of Personnel Management] to make this happen."
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