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Peters bill aims to help USPS finances, performance

U.S. Postal Service retirees in front of post office
Tracy Samilton
Michigan Radio

U.S. Sen. Gary Peters (D-MI) has introduced a bill to strengthen the United States Postal Service.

The agency has struggled for years. Performance especially suffered upon the appointment of Louis DeJoy as postmaster general in the final year of the Trump administration, say observers.

Peters says Americans depend on the post office for more than delivering and receiving first-class mail.

"Folks are relying on the mail service for critical supplies, medicines that come through the mail system," he said. "We know our small businesses use the postal service, and it's particularly important for folks who live in rural areas."

Peters says the bill eliminates requirements that no other business in the nation must meet, including having to fully pre-fund retirement health care for employees, no matter their age, and not being able to utilize Medicare in order to control health care costs.

The bill would also allow post offices to generate revenue by selling hunting and fishing licenses, with the option of adding other services later on.

And it would require more transparency from the agency on performance metrics, such as the average time to deliver first-class mail.

Peters says he's confident his bill will pass the Senate because ten Republicans have co-sponsored it.

Tracy Samilton covers energy and transportation, including the auto industry and the business response to climate change for Michigan Public. She began her career at Michigan Public as an intern, where she was promptly “bitten by the radio bug,” and never recovered.
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