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Bipartisan Senate Plan Lets Postal Service Use Fund Surplus

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The Postal Service has requested help from Congress many times to assist the independent agency tackle its steep financial crisis.

A bill introduced Wednesday by Sens. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Tom Carper (D-Del.) and Scott Brown (R-Mass.) would give the agency access to a retirement fund surplus to help it shore up its finances, according to a report from Reuters.

Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe had requested Congress give back the agency $7 billion it claims it overpaid into a retirement fund.

In August, the agency reported a net loss of $5.7 billion for the first nine months of fiscal year 2011.

“The U.S. Postal Service is not an 18th century relic,” Lieberman said. “It is a 21st century national asset. But times are changing rapidly and so too must the Postal Service, if it is to survive.”

“The Postal Service literally won’t survive without legislative and administrative reforms,” Collins said. “Absent action, it won’t be able to meet its payroll a year from now. The Postal Service is vital to our economy, yet is on the verge of collapse. It is in imminent financial danger. Jobs are at stake.”

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