Is Congress Robbing the Postal Service?
I've read stranger things.
Completely by accident I assure you, JDA ended up linked to on a site that aggregates postal service news for postal employees. Not being one to cower at the thought of my mail carrier going postal on me, I got hit with plenty of spicy comments from mail carriers who took issue with my view on the pathetic "service" I'm stuck with from my local PO. On the bright side, I discovered a pretty useful website for all things USPS. If you're into watching car crashes or burning buildings, I recommend checking out Postalmag.com as I'm sure they will continue to update as USPS rots from the inside out.
Anyway! I happened to catch this on the site and couldn't pass it up. Are we misguided in our USPS criticism? Could it be that it is, in fact, Congress who screwed this all up?
From Postal News:
Through the first two months of its fiscal year, the US Postal Service, despite a weak economy and a sharp drop in first class mail, has made an operating profit of over a half billion dollars. At least that’s what the USPS would be reporting if it were allowed to operate as it was designed to forty years ago. Thanks to the “reform” law Congress enacted in 2006 after it was discovered that the USPS was overpaying its retirement obligations by billions of dollars every year, however, the service will once again have to turn its profits over to the Treasury, and borrow more money to keep operating."Unaudited", as if that makes a difference.
For the month of November the USPS reported an unaudited net profit of $109 million on sales of $5.7 billion. Added to the operating profit reported in October, that brought year to date net profit to $549 million. Because of the 2006 law however, the USPS already owes the Treasury $917 million in so-called “trust fund” payments. Those charges are partially offset by another Congressional brainstorm, the monthly revaluation of the USPS’s workers comp liability. The bottom line however, is a net loss for November of almost a half billion dollars.
As bizarre as the whole shell game is, it’s probably the best current example of bipartisanship on Capitol Hill: Democrats get to shave a few billion off the national debt, and Republicans are spared the inconvenient example of a government run enterprise that makes a profit- instead warning of “taxpayer bailouts” when no “taxpayer” money is involved! It’s a win-win- at least for the politicians.