The Senate Governmental Affairs Committee is continuing
a series of hearings on Postal Service reform prior to
The Postal Service has over 730,000 career employees
and is the foundation of a $900 billion mailing industry
employing nine million Americans, said Chairman Susan
Collins. She said the Postal Service faces the challenge
of a declining core business, first-class mail, which
pays for two-thirds of institutional costs.
The hearing focused on workforce reforms that could give
management and employee unions the authority to negotiate
wages and benefits, establish a performance-based pay
system for all employees, and authorize a new Postal
Regulatory Board to ensure compensation on par with the
Senator Collins said that rightsizing the Postal Service
does not have to mean layoffs because 47 percent of the
current career Postal employees will be eligible for
retirement by 2010 and that proper management reforms
could minimize negative impact to them.
The hearing follows reports by the General Accounting
Office calling for immediate reform to avert a drastic
financial bailout or huge postage rate increases.