In a letter obtained by the O+F Advisor, United Parcel Service (UPS) chairman/CEO Michael L. Eskew says his organization is being incorrectly depicted as the villain in the postal reform issue.
Eskew writes: “UPS has been depicted incorrectly. In fact, UPS has publicly supported the current reform effort for over two years, and has been actively involved in the effort. As all stakeholders did, we worked to improved the bill. The so-called “single piece” issue was an area where we were able to negotiate an acceptable compromise with the USPS that was fair to consumers, the mailing community, and competitors.”
After the USPS/UPS compromise was reached, it was rejected by the lawmakers. Nevertheless, I spoke personally to Senator Susan Collins, the lead senate sponsor of postal reform legislation, on Friday, September 29, to let her know that UPS would not stand in the way of her efforts to pass the postal reform bill she had crafted, despite the lack of acceptance of the single piece compromise.”
The single piece issue stems from the fact that private delivery firms pushed for language in the House bill that could have resulted in an increase of up to 40% in Parcel Post rates, the benchmark that many private carriers use for setting their own delivery fees.
Eskew goes on to write, “Ultimately postal reform failed to move because of the opposition of various postal employee groups.”
The letter was sent to people who had written Eskew on the advice of the Direct Marketing Association. In its efforts to push through postal reform at the 11th hour, the DMA had urged its members to write or call Eskew’s office when it appeared that UPS was blocking the postal reform efforts.