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House Passes USPS Fairness Act

February 5, 2020 - As a result of the dedicated work of the National Postal Mail Handlers Union and its fellow postal unions, on Wednesday, February 5, members of the House of Representatives voted in favor of H.R. 2382, the USPS Fairness Act, calling to repeal the Postal Service’s mandate to prefund its retiree healthcare costs.

Representatives realized the financial burden prefunding causes, creating an annual loss of $5 billion for over a decade. Because of this loss, the Postal Service has been forced to cut services and unable to focus on revenue growth.  By repealing the prefunding mandate, the Postal Service will return to a pay as you go means of funding retiree healthcare benefits, a practice that is used in all other federal agencies, and within the private sector. NPMHU, the National Association of Letter Carriers, the American Postal Workers, and the National Rural Letter Carriers Association expressed in a letter to members of House, “After 13 years of gridlock over more comprehensive postal reform, the USPS Fairness Act would ease the burden on Congress by reducing the size of the financial hole to be filled.”

Upon the passage of the bill, NPMHU National President Paul V. Hogrogian commented, “This bill is an important first step towards obtaining fiscal stability for the Postal Service. As H.R. 2382 received overwhelming bipartisan support with a vote of 309-106, it is obvious Representatives recognize how vital the Postal Service is to all Americans. I also want to thank NPMHU members who contacted their Representatives, expressing their support for the legislation. Your efforts added to our success today.” 

However, today’s passage in the House does not mark the end of NPMHU’s efforts to repeal the prefunding mandate. In order for the USPS Fairness Act to become law, it needs to next be passed in the Senate, the signed by the President. On December 3, 2019, Senators Steve Daines (R-MT) and Brian Schatz (D-HI) introduced a introduced a companion bill, S. 2965, in the Senate. NPMHU will update its members with any updates on any advancement of this vital legislation.

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