Letter carrier union leader urges Congress to take on USPS retiree funds

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The president of the National Association of Letter Carriers has urged Congress to take up a long-term fix for the US Postal Service's retiree funding issues.

Earlier this fall, Congress passed, and President Barack Obama signed, legislation that allowed the USPS to delay $4 billion in payments to a retirees' healthcare fund. The agency had been charged with spending $5.4 billion on payments to the fund this year. Earlier this month, the agency disclosed a net loss of $3.8 billion for its 2009 fiscal year.

“We appreciate the short-term relief provided by HR 22, but Congress must order the Office of Personnel Management to review the pre-funding provisions of the law to both more accurately measure the true cost of future benefits, which it now grossly exaggerated, and provide for a more reasonable and sustainable scheduling for pre-funding,” said Fred Rolando, president of the NALC, in a bulletin to members.

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