On the scene at MTAC: USPS pushes for negotiated service agreements

Later this month, the U.S. Postal Service will release a report to Congress on the status of its development of negotiated service agreements (NSAs), arrangements it would like to make with large volume mailers for postal discounts allowed for additional mailer worksharing.

“We hope to kick a debate between us and the Postal Rate Commission (PRC) on how we might—through current regulation—make NSAs more applicable and easier for all of us to use,” said Deborah Willhite, USPS senior vice president, government relations and public policy, during the Mailers Technical Advisory Committee meetings in Washington on Feb. 7. “We’d like to work first with the PRC to see if we can’t make NSAs more attractive through current regulations,” she said. “If not, we can craft legislation to get the law more acceptable to us and customers, to make NSAs easier to use through a bill we can quickly move through.”

Willhite says that the driving motivation behind NSAs is that “it’s one of the things industry and the Postal Service have consistently sought for the past several years, because they’d work for both of us. We have a lot of proponents in Congress on NSAs,” she said. AOL Time-Warner has been a leading ally to the USPS and its quest for NSAs. Willhite said she also hopes to work within current postal regulations to make phased postal rates a reality. “We’ve already started talking to our oversight committee about phased rates, and about how they can be negotiated within current law.”

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