Congressman Rahall On Mail Delivery

Third District Congressman Nick Rahall says the U.S. Postal Service does not have the authority to eliminate Saturday mail delivery without Congressional approval.

“They’re taking the law into their own hands,” Congressman Rahall says, pointing to language in annual appropriations bills, requiring six days of mail delivery each week.

“We just can’t stand by and allow this to occur.”

U.S. Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe announced the reductions to mail delivery, which will take effect in August, on Wednesday.

To save as much as $2 billion every year, Donahoe says mail will not be delivered to homes and businesses on Saturdays, but package, mail order medication and express mail deliveries will continue on those weekend days.

Donahue, who started his postal career in Pittsburgh, says the U.S. Postal Service is an independent agency that gets no tax dollars for day to day operations.

Because the federal government is now operating under a temporary spending measure which expires in March and not an appropriations bill, he says the agency does not need to consult Congress to make the change.

On Thursday’s MetroNews Talkline, Congressman Rahall said he disagrees.

“What’s the role of Congress?  What’s our Constitutional role, our Constitutional responsibilities?  It’s all spelled out in the Constitution,” he said.

“The Postal Service not only is ignoring that, but ignoring past legislative actions of the Congress.”

He says eliminating Saturday mail delivery will hit especially hard in West Virginia’s rural communities.  “I don’t think the Postal Service is looking at what is best for rural America,” Congressman Rahall said.

“You know, when you cut out this mail delivery on Saturdays, if Monday is a holiday, then you could be delaying mail for up to three additional days.”

As of now, Saturday mail service is scheduled to end the week of August 5th.

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Comments

  • Jim

    And, when you get free postage (franking) how much could you care about the serfs in WV?

  • Jim

    Whoa, we can't have this! Mr. Rahall couldn't mail his letter "...inadvertenly written on the wrong letterhead" on Saturday.

  • Halley's Comet

    I so shocked that someone in the U.S. Congress would say that saving 2 Billion a year is something WE JUST CAN'T STAND BY AND ALLOW THIS TO OCCUR.
    Wow. If the Postmaster general is 50% correct, it still saves 1 Billion!!!!!!!!!!!

  • cutty77

    To be Honest i think they could deliver mail on Mon,Wed,and Fri. and never miss a beat.If you get something that is Important it will come certified anyway.

  • Geno

    Let's tax the rich, I am sure they can come up with a few hundred billion to bail out the post office.

  • George

    You are all worng. I am a mail carrier that has been working sixty hours a week. For the last 5 years as have most all of the letter carriers in my city. This adds up to over 30,000 in overtime per carrier. multiply that across the nation to figure out where the bad business decisions were made. Hire enough people to do the job and you would not have so much loss. They caused this problem strictly to achieve the amount of loss necessary to justify cutting jobs and service .

    • GregG

      "They caused this problem strictly to achieve the amount of loss necessary to justify cutting jobs and service"....then why are you still working?

  • Tim C

    Privatize them! That will force them to come up with a sound business model. The unions don't want to stop Saturday delivery because that is a lot of overtime.

  • Dave

    I doubt it could turn a profit if stamps were 60 cents each. Face it, it's an old school organization where employees make enough to live on and even raise a family. That's not very fashionable now days where the average worker makes almost nothing in this state.

  • Don Jr.

    I'd be all for eliminating Saturday delivery if it would actually help the Post Service stay solvent. It won't. Rural Americans will see diminished service and the Postal Service's budget problems will remain, unfortunately.
    I support congressman Rahall's opposition to the USPS eliminating Saturday delivery, unless it is part of a comprehensive plan that fixes the problem.

  • thornton

    Ditch Saturday delivery..I would not miss it for one second....it would also be one less day to throw all the junk mail away.

  • Jeff

    Ending Saturday delivery will not do much to save money. What they really need to do is centralize more Post offices. It is totally stupid and ignorant that in Parts of our state, there are multiple post offices (yes unfortunately in the rural areas) that are within 10 miles of each other. In one fayette county area........you can pass 4 in one 7 mile stretch. That is a waste of dollars.

  • Medman

    Perfect example of why government cannot be efficient. If they outsourced mail service to the private sector, they would cut costs and improve service. Saturday mail delivery these days is a "no brainer" in terms of saving money without impacting an overwhelming majority of our citizens. No one can make a valid argument as to how this will destroy their business or personal life. The only people opposing this are the postal unions and they are the ones who are a big part of the problem. But, the bigger problem is that postal services must change because of e-mail and on-line options for conducting business. Even Social Security now has adopted a no mail service for monthly payments.

  • Protechcpa

    So ironic to hear a left wing democrat like Rahall pontificating about what is and is not constitutional. Apparently, that only matters when it supports his position. When the Tea Party demands adherence, we are labeled a "fringe group".

  • Dave

    The post office is in a tough situation. They don't get money from Congress, but Congress tells them what to do. So they have to at least break even but Congress won't let them break even. They should become another money loss government agency or be allowed to become profitable.

    • GregG

      I'm glad someone else see this Dave. The way Congress had treated the Postal Service, how could anyone look at it other than Congress trying to bankrupt the Postal Service so they can hand it to their "friends" in the private sector. I would like to see Congress control Big Oil as they are doing the Postal Service. Wouldn't it be great for our economy if the price of gas was the same as a postage stamp.

  • Don

    This is just further evidence of why Nick Jo is so irrelevant in DC. He tries to create dust-ups for the wrong causes. The USPS is a bloated government organization for whom time is quickly passing by. When they try to adjust to the reality of life (like trying to make their spending match their income) he tosses out this scantimonious crap about the roll of Congress when he won't offer even lip service to the Senate who has totally failed in thier consitiutional duty to pass a budget for the past four years - but that would require publically diagreeing with Jay and Joe - which Nick Jo doesn't have the guts to do. To say nothing of his president who daily tramples the Constitution into the ground. Where is the cry to defend the American citizens rights in the Constitution from Obama's Judge, Jury, and Executioner approach to drone-killing American citizens abroad? Nick Jo is a joke and has been for years.