NALC Postal reform update: A changed political landscape requires a new strategy

February 11, 2017 – Congress returned to business in January to a transformed capitol city. We have a new president and one-party control of the federal government.

Fortunately, postal reform has strong bipartisan support and our goals have not changed. Our strategy, of course, will have to change to reflect the new landscape.

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This week, NALC President Fredric Rolando testified before a hearing of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee on postal reform legislation. The committee’s leaders (including two former sub-committee leaders) have introduced two bills: H.R. 756, the Postal Reform Act of 2017, and H.R. 760, The Postal Service Financial Improvement Act of 2017. We used our testimony to provide suggested improvements to the bills, which may be marked up later this month.  (A mark-up is a committee meeting where members can amend, delete or add provisions to bills under consideration.)

We also urged the committee to adopt the two bills because they contain all the essential elements to achieve our two core goals for postal reform:

  1. a workable resolution of the crushing retiree health pre-funding burden, achieved by maximizing participation in the Medicare program and investing the Retiree Health Fund more sensibly; and
  2. a partial restoration of the exigent rate increase that expired last year, to provide USPS with the revenues needed to stabilize its finances as the Postal Regulatory Commission conducts its 10-year review of the rate-setting system for market-dominant products.

The Oversight Committee’s consideration of H.R. 756, which we hope will be amended to include the provisions of H.R. 760, is just the first step in a very long process. Assuming the bill is approved by the committee, it will be referred to the Congressional Budget Office for a review of its impact on the federal budget (“scoring”). The legislation will also be sent to the two House committees that share jurisdiction over the Medicare program: the Ways and Means Committee for the bill provisions involving Medicare Parts A and B, and the Energy and Commerce Committee for the Medicare prescription drug provisions. Once all the committees have had their say, the bill must go to the floor of the House for debate, amendments and a final vote. Meanwhile, this whole process will have to be repeated in the Senate.

At each stage of the process, NALC will assess the bill and measure our progress toward achieving our goals. At this early stage, we can support advancing H.R. 756 and H.R. 760 through the Oversight Committee. Our goal is to work with our coalition of unions and mailers to keep the process going and make improvements along the way.

Our ultimate objective is to achieve the two core goals described above while protecting our jobs, our rights, our networks (including door delivery, Saturday delivery, etc.) and the interests of all annuitants from any unreasonable hardships caused by the bill’s Medicare provisions.

17 thoughts on “NALC Postal reform update: A changed political landscape requires a new strategy

  1. USPS,should seriously attempt to make business- arrangements,with competitors FedEx and UPS; in which UPS and FedEx customers,would be able to pick up,missed”attempted deliveries”-at the nearest Postal-Station. FedEx and UPS,appear to want to be only business originating delivery-services,as they continually close their retail-stores;as well as,canceling agreements with other”Authorized” retail shipping-agents .While there have been,several rounds of closures,Postal Stations remain in virtually”Every Town U.S.A.”

  2. Call your elected House Representative and ask them to vote no on HR 756. Tell them why you want them to vote against this bill. Let them know that nobody from the unions, mangement organizations or the Postal Service has ever called you or wrote to you about this Postal reform bill. Let your elected official know that the unions are not factually correct and do not represent you. Tell your elected Representative that you could support this bill if current retiree’s are grandfathered into keeping our existing FEHB program. Be polite and courteous when you call and thank them for their time.

  3. NALC…..THE UNION THAT’S GOING TO TRANSFORM OUR HEALTHCARE SYSTEM BUT CAN’T EVEN SPELL THE WORD “CAPITAL” CORRECTLY?? WHAT A BUNCH OF DIPSTICKS!!! ESPECIALLY WITH A PRESIDENT THAT THINKS THIS NEW PLAN WILL SAVE THE RETIREES MONEY…..HE PROBABLY FAILED MATH IN HIGH SCHOOL!!

  4. The best thing that Postal employees and annuitants can do is to keep a jar of Vaseline by your computer so that news about our future doesn’t hurt. The Ratpublicans want to make America a right to work for free nation. As much as many hate their union, just wait till you are on your own! I’m quite sure everyone can prosper, be able to deal with all the crap. To be fair, every employer should be required to pre fund health care. That will never happen. It was designed to place a heavy weight on the Postal Service to crush it. Then the right could say the Postal service is a money loser. Then a businessman can take over and pay his slaves near nothing!

  5. Since working at the postal service for 31 years. I have to say the Union works very closely with managment.I had the experience of a manager working with a shpostward to set me up to have me thrown out of the buliding. Thank God I made a call to a Senator’s office. It turns out both the shopstewaRd and manager never stopped trying make life unbearable for me. The harassment and retaliation continued even after being diagnosed with breast cancer. The sad part the postal service sells breast cancer stamps while abusing
    me. I live everyday with that memory and more of the horrors.

    • The “Union” doesn’t work closely with management, a dumb-ass shop steward did! As a union representative for over 28 years, I am tired of everyone blaming the “UNION”. The union doesn’t condone idiot shop stewards like the one you described, and YES, the man who said the union’s don’t work for you, must be talking about his own personal experience with the union, because I work about 16 hours a day working for my members! I hate to say it, but this reform legislation is pretty good considering you are dealing with GOP’s who want to destroy postal jobs and unions! And guess what? Thousands of postal workers voted not only for Trump, but for these same GOP’s in Congress! Now, is that the union’s fault?

      • The union is why we get paid what we get paid( which is pretty good) however, the union is also responsible for keeping TOO much dead weight (worthless employees) around. If you can’t do the job you were hired to do, guess what, you should be fired. No one respects postmaster or supervisor at my office because nothing happens to the crap carriers and clerks that I have to work with. I wish for a day where my lazy coworkers get fired. I would dance around the building if that day came.

  6. Time to just cut the crap and eliminate the wealth Assurance co’s,, Oh I mean the health insurance co’s. Why is it ok to be forced to pay taxes for school sports, sports stadiums for pro sports teams, taxes for businessmen wealthfair, and burn tax dollars in never ending wars? At the same time American citizens worry about health care, can they pay for treatment? The Ratpublicans want to give the bastard insurance co’s more rights! Time for single payer health care. Americans must be self reliant, while business bastards, and foreign governments can live off tax payers! Why is it that businessmen aren’t required to be self reliant? They can’t survive without a hand out from the tax payer fools!

  7. Not sure I understand. I have been told for nearly a decade that we cannot get postal reform through the system because of Republican interference. Now the Republicans have complete control of Washington and they are moving a bi-partisan bill that has the support of the USPS and all the unions. Of course I WILL NOT believe my lying eyes and will continue to give my unconditional support and tithe to the progressive Democrat Party, but I have to admit I am confused by this unanticipated chain of events. In solidarity,

  8. What about the strategy used to steal my 2 years backpay. The APWU knew about it and did nothing. It’s called stealing. How many others have been frauded by union business agents. It’s been confirmed by a fraud and forgery expert. I turned all evidence over to the Attorney Generals office and a Senator. I was harassed and retaliated against for many years. I was also diagnosed with breast cancer. I still work there in fear of losing my home, mounting medical bills the list goes on. I pray for justice. How many are being frauded out of theyre backpay.

  9. Just so happen this is not a wait and see what happens. You better be ready whenever the process is final. For now continue to investigate to prove yourself true for this cause and the pitfalls if any exist.
    I pray our leaders are correct.

  10. President Rolando, You make the statement..to protect.. “the interests of all annuitants (retirees) from any unreasonable hardships caused by the bill’s Medicare provisions”! Are you kidding, after you testified before the House Committee and pretty much told them that it’s OK to take away our healthcare benefits (as we know them)?? The Medicare Provision will be an extra $300 a month for my wife and I…and the Part D plan has deductibles before they start paying anything at all, and that’s on top of what the new Postal “higher risk pool” plan costs (it sure won’t be cheaper that what I pay now)! You need to “GROW A PAIR” and decide what side you are on…or go and assume the High Profile job that was promised to you by the PMG in exchange for turning your back on the Postal retirees!!! Fight to get rid of the prefunding and fight for the people you represent for a change!!!

  11. I want weekends off the carriers who carry on my day off don’t care and do a horrible customer service job…

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