Summertime Blues for Postal Reform

It’s looking more and more likely that postal reform will not be enacted before Congress takes its summer recess next month—or even before the end of the year, when the 110th Congress adjourns.

Ben Cooper, chairman of the lobbying group Coalition for a 21st Century Postal Service, says that with so little time left before the break, prospects to get reform enacted are bleak—at least in the short term. “I think dynamics ultimately favor the bill passing,” says Cooper. “But it still will take some time.”

Cooper blames much of the delay in reform on “legislative inertia”—an inability of those in charge to fully commit to pushing the issues over the line. Nonetheless, he contends that the proposed rate changes for 2007 can still be affected by reform.

“Right now we’re looking at the new rate case…under the old system,” Cooper says. “It seems that the current administration still would like to see a reform bill passed and thereby limit the ability of the USPS to file another large rate case.”