Committee to Hold Hearing on Financial Woes Facing USPS

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Rep. Dan Burton (R-IN), chairman of the House Government Reform Committee, will hold an oversight hearing tomorrow that will focus on the U.S. Postal Services' projected financial shortfalls.


In September 2000, the USPS projected a surplus of $150 million for Fiscal Year 2001. That projection was based in part on the increase in postal rates that went into effect in January. More recent estimates, however, project a deficit of between $2 billion and $3 billion, prompting the USPS on March 8 to order a freeze on 800 construction projects around the country.


The committee will seek an explanation for the dramatic shift in the USPS' financial outlook. The panel will also address strategies to improve service in the f ace of increasing economic challenges.


"We need to know what happened here," Burton said in a statement. "The postal service cannot continue to run this way without serious harm to the affordable mail service the American people deserve. Something has to be done."


The Committee has invited Postmaster General William J. Henderson to explain the challenges the USPS is facing.


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