Postmaster General Louis DeJoy on Tuesday introduced plans to sluggish mail supply requirements and lower hours at some submit places of work as a part of a 10-year technique to stabilize the struggling company.
Details of the long-awaited plan come at a time of intense scrutiny on the U.S. Postal Service over persistent supply delays underneath DeJoy, a significant GOP donor who took over the company final summer season. The plan additionally features a proposal to consolidate underused submit places of work, hinted at a possible postage charge enhance and detailed investments in new supply automobiles, amongst different issues.
Facing an anticipated $160 billion in losses over the subsequent decade, DeJoy and postal executives confused the necessity to lower prices and modernize the company’s operations as its workload more and more shifts from dealing with letters to hauling an increasing number of packages.
“This is about the long-term viability of the organization under the two missions that we have that are legislated, that is deliver to every house six days a week and be self-sustaining,” DeJoy mentioned. He introduced the plans at a webinar with different postal service officers.
DeJoy mentioned the most important change can be a soothing of the present first-class letter supply customary of one-to-three-days to a one-to-five-day benchmark. Postal management mentioned the longer timeframe would apply solely to mail going to the farthest reaches of its community and that 70% of first-class mail will nonetheless be delivered inside a three-day customary.
The company mentioned it’s going to topic potential adjustments to supply requirements, in addition to a number of different components of their plan, to a proper rulemaking course of and advisory opinions from the impartial Postal Regulatory Commission earlier than they go into impact.
Sen. Gary Peters, a Michigan Democrat who has been vital of DeJoy, cautioned that any discount of supply requirements would have a huge impact on clients.
“While I understand Postal Service leadership’s desire to set long-term goals, I am concerned that several of the initiatives in this plan will harm service for folks across the country who rely on the Postal Service for prescription drugs, financial documents, running their small businesses, and more,” mentioned Peters.
Democrats have repeatedly known as for DeJoy to be faraway from his submit as supply occasions have lagged throughout the nation. Late final month, President Joe Biden named three nominees to the company’s governing board, which if accredited, would give Democrats and Democratic appointees a majority on the panel and the flexibility to oust DeJoy by way of a vote. Currently, all six of the board’s members have been appointed by former President Donald Trump. The White House didn’t instantly return an e-mail in search of remark.
DeJoy, a former supply-chain CEO who took over the Postal Service final June, has been mired in controversy since taking up the company.
Shortly after taking the place, DeJoy carried out a sequence of controversial coverage adjustments that delayed mail earlier than the 2020 election, fueling fear that he was sabotaging the company on behalf of Trump, a vocal critic of mail-in voting. DeJoy has strongly disputed that declare and ultimately suspended some of his changes following intense public pushback and a crush of authorized challenges.
Despite the considerations, the company mentioned it processed and delivered no less than 135 million ballots throughout the normal election and that 99.7% of ballots have been delivered to election officers inside 5 days.
Mark Dimondstein, president of the American Postal Workers Union, mentioned the plan included some optimistic components however urged the company to prioritize on-time deliveries and different service requirements.
“Any proposals that would either slow the mail, reduce access to post offices, or further pursue the failed strategy of plant consolidation will need to be addressed,” he mentioned in a press release. “The APWU will proactively engage with USPS’s managers, the Postal Regulatory Commission, leaders in Congress and the public to address these issues.”
Izaguirre reported from Lindenhurst, New York.
Associated Press protection of voting rights receives help partly from Carnegie Corporation of New York. The AP is solely answerable for this content material.
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