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Printing Industries of America Statement on Crucial Postal Reform Efforts

Following today's introduction of the Postal Reform Act of 2018, Printing Industries of America President and CEO Michael Makin.

"Printing Industries of America (PIA) applauds today's bipartisan introduction of the Postal Reform Act of 2018 in the Senate. The original sponsors of this bill, Senators Carper (DE), Heitkamp (ND), McCaskill (MO), and Moran (KS), have worked diligently to put progress over politics in this attempt to solve a serious policy problem. PIA and its members appreciate their efforts."

"This legislation addresses overdue financial stabilization measures to ensure the United States Postal Service (USPS) can continue operating as a valued delivery channel for PIA member companies. The legislation also includes provisions to improve rural mail delivery service in communities where print communications and postal mail is especially vital to consumers and to commerce."

"PIA is hopeful that today's bill introduction signals the Senate’s awareness of the serious time sensitivity in passing postal reform legislation. Currently, the USPS balance sheet is swimming in red ink due almost entirely to statutory requirements that it pre-fund retiree health benefits up to 75 years at a cost of tens of billions of dollars."

"Meanwhile, the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) is barreling to a conclusion of its 10-year rate review process, and--barring legislation to financially stabilize the USPS—is expected to raise postage stamps up to 64 cents over the next five years. For business mail that generates over 90 percent of USPS revenue, the new PRC-directed postal rates could be even higher. This is a collision course that would be bad for individual postal customers, the printing industry and its supply chain partners, and, ultimately, the future viability of a user-fee-based national postal system."

"The Senate bill introduced today joins other Congressional postal reform efforts supported by PIA. PIA has urged passage of similar bipartisan House legislation (approved last year by a Congressional committee, but stalled in the lawmaking process). Just this week, PIA urged Republican and Democrat leaders in the House and Senate to include postal reform as part of the omnibus government funding bill; this was rejected. Bottom line: time is slipping away to salvage a postal rate system that is affordable and predictable. Congress must act soon."

"PIA represents an industry comprised of companies employing 800,000 workers in every state and district. The vast majority of PIA member companies manufacture printed material that enters the mail stream and depend on a viable USPS to deliver their products. PIA urges Congress to move expeditiously to pass postal reform legislation. We stand ready to continue providing policy input and business-focused solutions to lawmakers as the Postal Reform Act of 2018 and similar bills move through the legislative process."

www.printing.org

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