U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow today introduced an amendment that would stop the U.S. Postal Service from continuing the closure of facilities for two years, preventing delays in services that will impact Michigan families and small businesses. Sen. Stabenow joined Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and 11 other senators in authoring this amendment to legislation currently before the Senate. The amendment would also re-establish overnight delivery standards for first-class mail.
“The post office provides a critical basic service to everyone no matter where you live. Closing facilities and cutting services will lead to delays that will harm Michigan businesses and families,” Stabenow said. “I remain committed to stopping closures and ending a requirement by law that the Postal Service overfund retiree health care, which is the biggest reason for its recent operating losses.”
The Postal Service announced in July 2014 that they would begin consolidating facilities. So far, 82 mail processing facilities are being consolidated, including mail processing centers in Kingsford, Kalamazoo, and Lansing.
Last November, Sen. Stabenow sent a letter to the Postmaster General asking for the consolidations and closures to be delayed until studies are completed and customers are informed and given an opportunity to share concerns. Sen. Stabenow also sponsored the Postal Service Protection Act last year, which ends a requirement by law that the Postal Service overfund retiree health care at a cost of $5 billion a year. This unnecessarily burdensome requirement that no other business must follow is responsible for nearly all of the Postal Service’s recent operating losses. This legislation also allows the Postal Service to modernize with new products and services.