LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Some ideas to help post office

Posted

To the editor:

(re: “Post office hurling toward extinction? Blame Congress,” Sept. 21)

The U.S. Post Office has averaged quarterly losses of $550 million in 2017. This will now result in the price of a first class stamp going up by a penny from 49 cents to 50 cents.

One wonders why they previously first decreased the price of a first class stamp from 49 cents to 50 cents, before bringing it back to 49 cents. Part of the problem is that Congress in 2006 mandated that the post office fully fund 75 years of retirement benefits for employees. This has contributed billions to the post office’s long-term debt.

While many private and other public retirement plans are underfunded, the post office is vastly overfunded. It is time for Congress to amend legislation to afford the post office the ability to fund its retirement plan at a more reasonable level.

There are other initiatives which could assist the Postal Service in avoiding frequent postage stamp increases. The post office should continue with more joint business ventures like Amazon and expanding Sunday delivery. This could be the start of something big. Using underutilized assets and facilities on Sunday could generate badly needed revenues.

This would assist in developing alternatives to the periodic increasing frequency of raising the price of a first class stamp every few years. Why not consider going after other available untapped potential revenue streams?

Consider these untapped sources to reduce operating deficits, and perhaps turn a small profit. The U.S. Postal Service could sell advertising space on the sides of mailboxes, inside and outside the post offices, along with the small Jeeps, regular trucks and heavy duty long-haul trucks. Sell off some of the valuable real estate and move to less-expensive locations.

Why not join banks and fast food restaurants that sublet space at Walmart and other big box stores to open smaller post offices? Generate both revenue and customers by subletting excess capacity to underutilized post offices to other village, town, county, city, state or federal agencies, along with private sector businesses. License corporations to sponsor stamps for a fee.

Have members of Congress, state legislatures, and other elected officials pay the real, full costs for their annoying frequent bulk rate mailings to constituents. 

They are nothing more than free re-election campaign brochures subsidized by taxpayers. Charge the full price for all junk mail. Future increases in the price of stamps should be directly tied to inflation.

The post office should apply free enterprise solutions, including working with Amazon and other private sector businesses, to provide a more cost-effective product, reduce deficits, and prevent more branches from closing, thus keeping its commitment to serve the public well.

Larry Penner

Larry Penner

Comments

1 comment on this story | Please log in to comment by clicking here
Please log in or register to add your comment
Plumbing contractor

I was a plumber and later a stationary Engineer for the post office 90 church street and then became a unfired pressure vessel and low pressure boiler inspector for the North east region prior to obtaining my NYC master plumbers license

Going from a level 2 to a level 15 in less then 7 years and I quit to stat my own company

I can honestly state the post office is actually an insane asylum run by the inmates where incompetent employees are promoted to upper management . FUMU / SNAFU

Gross neglect and no accountability just plain stupidity is why the postal service is broke

At one time after I resigned it was one of my biggest accounts handing all the Bronx stations and some of the Manhattan offices

I even called the postal inspectors inspector general and they came to my office and bugged the phone and their equipment failed to record TWICE

Imagine having an organization that does have so called plumbers, electricians, carpenters,elevator mechanics,truck mechanics etc. on their payroll and yet the call a plumbing contractor located in the Bronx to replace a toilet seat in a Manhattan post office?

The postal service had a reorganization act and paid employees bonuses to go from supervisors back to rank and file. Then within three years some were promoted back to being supervisors again

A supervisor in the Riverdale office was caught stealing and was told to take an early retirement so he could save his pension as it was possibly more cost effective then taking him off to federal lock up

I often thought the post office should be supplemented by welfare as many of these employees would be on welfare if it was not for the post office hiring them

Sunday, October 8