Appropriations Bill Offers “Concerns” About USPS

Congressional politicians continue to signal their displeasure over aspects of Postmaster General Louis DeJoy’s 10 Year Plan insofar as it impacts processing facilities.

The latest example is the statement of the House Committee on Appropriations contained in its report on the Financial Services And General Government Appropriations Bill, 2025, approved by the committee on June 13.  Some were local issues – the need for a post office or ZIP Codes not aligned with municipal boundaries – but others are matters to which the PMG might want to pay attention, including

Postal Consolidations. … The Committee is concerned with the USPS’s aggressive approach to consolidating processing and distribution centers into local processing centers and the notification and justification provided to customers and postal workers.  Early consolidations in Richmond, VA and Atlanta, GA have already encountered setbacks, such as reduced mail service performance and unexpected cost overruns.  With planned consolidations like Fayetteville, AR, and Reno, NV, that propose to transport mail across state lines, the Committee is deeply concerned about the potential negative impacts on mail service to the American people, customer satisfaction, and cost overruns potentially undermining the goals outlined in the DFA plan.

“Processing and Distribution Centers.—In recent years, USPS has announced the downsizing of several processing and distribution centers to local processing centers.  The Committee remains concerned that these consolidations have contributed to reduced services and harmed postal performance.  The Committee encourages the USPS to halt any realignment, consolidation, or partial consolidation of processing or logistics facilities that provide services to postal districts that at any point over the past calendar year have failed to meet 93% on-time delivery performance for two-day single-piece First-Class mail and 90.3% on-time delivery performance for three- to five-day First-Class mail.

Facility Modernization.—USPS shall communicate clearly planned network modernization activities and take appropriate steps to protect against service disruptions that could impact elections.

Postal Office Locations.—The Committee is concerned that many cities, including the City of Eastvale, California currently lacks a post office within city boundaries, causing significant disruptions to mail services for residents.  No later than 90 days after enactment of this Act, the Committee directs the United States Postal Service to report to the Committee on metrics used to determine the construction or acquisition of new postal facilities.  Additionally, the report should include a comprehensive analysis related to the construction or acquisition of a new post office in the City of Eastvale.

Mail Theft.—The Committee continues to remain concerned about mail theft in the United States and the adverse impact it is having on postal customers, including extended disruptions of regular service and theft of personally identifiable information.  The Committee also recognizes that the current process for victims of mail theft in some localities places an undue burden on customers.

Postal Public Safety.—The Committee continues to remain very concerned about mail theft and violence against mail carriers and other postal employees.  The Committee urges the Postal Service to remove restrictions implemented in 2020 preventing Postal Police Officers from fully executing their duty to ensure public safety and mail security, and protect postal assets within the Nation’s mail system, whether on postal property or beyond the perimeter of postal property.

Accurate Address Listing.—The Committee looks forward to reviewing the report directed in H.R. 118–145 that directed the USPS to conduct an internal review on the numerous instances, nationwide, where assigned zip-codes overlap municipal jurisdictions resulting in multiple city listings or incorrect listings.  Additionally, the Committee looks forward to suggested solutions that could be utilized to ensure proper designations in the future, including options to designate a single, unique zip code for jurisdictions affected by this issue including Miami Lakes, FL.

Mail Theft Notifications.—The Committee reminds the USPS of the importance of notifying the public when it is evident that their mail has been stolen.  Timely notifications can help mail theft victims take actions to prevent identity theft, fraud, and other crimes.  The Committee urges the USPS to make these notifications a priority.

Modernized Passport Acceptance Services Pilot Program.—The Committee notes that the USPS plays a leading role in processing passports.  The current process is susceptible to evolving risks posed by potential image manipulations and document fraud.  The Committee urges USPS to carry out pilot programs (in at least five rural zip codes and at least five non-rural zip codes) utilizing self-service kiosks offering live portrait capture and direct electronic submission.

USPS Recruitment and Retention.—The Committee is concerned about the impact of workforce shortages on timely delivery of mail and directs USPS to brief the Committee within 90 days of enactment on significant barriers to recruitment and retention.”

The many instructions in the report indicate that members of Congress remain attentive to the USPS, particularly facility changes related to the 10-Year Plan.  Whether the PMG will stay his course or take the hint remains to be seen.

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