USPS Adviser: Postal Service Can't Compete Without Rate Hikes
"We have a costly infrastructure that doesn't pay its own way, and we don't have the flexibility to change it," said Speakes, who was press secretary during the Reagan administration.
Congressional over-regulation, he said, has left the postal service incapable of dealing with increasing competition from the private sector.
He told conference attendees that the postal service's already announced plans to submit a rate case should happen this summer.
The postal service has cut 700 jobs at headquarters and a similar number in the field, he said, and has cut spending by one-third. It also is reviewing projects and programs and is cutting nonessential funding. But the service still will be "$2 billion-plus in the hole next year," he said. "It's an uphill battle to keep our financial heads above water."