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August 2nd, 2012
09:43 AM ET

Postal service can't pay its bills

The U.S. Postal Service defaults on a $5.5 billion dollar payment to the retiree fund. CNN's Athena Jones reports.

Filed under: Athena Jones • Finance • U.S. Postal Service
soundoff (12 Responses)
  1. Jim

    Tell this do nothing Congress stop taking the money from the Post Office? The Post Office would be fine if it wasn't for the do nothing Congress. Congress care's for them self's and not for the American People. Then they leave on vacation boy they are a big {JOKE}. They shouldn't be paid? They haven't done anything in four years.

    August 3, 2012 at 9:47 am |
  2. Samantha Hamilton

    The truth is this is not a bill owed by the Post Office but a PREPAYMENT PLAN set up by former administration to pay for retirement, health benefits for current employees and FUTURE EMPLOYEES which do not yet exist.This account is already grossly over funded in terms of BILLIONS.-Former government and the decision makers in the Post Office have made a huge stupid deal -private business contributes 30-40% to these type of accounts for current employees.The invented #'s of future employees which we are reducing that future # more every month. Stop this PREPAY FUND MADNESS! The postal service has been making cuts but cannot change some things without GOVERNMENT CHANGE.

    August 2, 2012 at 5:57 pm |
  3. Julie

    Dear Aldo -read the answer Dodie from California gave.
    Dear KADE in AMES- I think you must work for UPS or FEDEX but that is not the answer. The USPS delivers packages the last mile for UPS and FEDEX because they do not feel it is cost effective. That means they deliver the packages to the back door of the local lPost Offices and the Letter Carriers deliver the packages FOR ups and fedex.
    Dear Jim Thomas in Phoenix, AZ- you should go down to your local Post Office and ask to be a carrier for a day and you will see how a business is suppose to work , it isn't because UPS or FEDEX has anything to do with it.
    YES, I am proud to call myself a Letter Carrier.

    August 2, 2012 at 5:48 pm |
  4. Dodie ~ California

    The closure of rural postal facilities throughout the country poses a particularly serious risk to states like Oregon, Minnesota, Michigan, Wisconsin, Wyoming and many others that rely on vote-by-mail for their federal and state elections.

    The USPS has not received taxpayer-dollars directly since 1980s. The USPS does receive some subsidies for costs associated with the disabled and overseas voters.

    In 2006, under the Bush Administration, Congress passed the "Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act", (which mandated $5.5 billion per year to be paid into an account to pre-fund retiree health-care, 75 years into the future - a requirement unique to this agency) Hmmm “75 years into the future” Wait… what agency has to pay for employee benefits 75 years into the future? No wonder the Post Office is going broke. If any company would have that mandate, they would have filed bankruptcy years ago. My question: If the private industry purchases the post office, would they be under the same required mandate?

    One more point, The Post Office is one of the few government agencies explicitly authorized by the United States Constitution. So would privatizing the USPS violate the constitution?

    August 2, 2012 at 4:35 pm |
  5. Aldo Martinez

    Who made the Post Office pay an unnecessary $5B to pension and why? Could it have been to give UPS and/or FedEx a competitive advantage?

    August 2, 2012 at 3:59 pm |
  6. Kade in Ames

    With the internet I no longer need newspapers, magazines, cards, or bills to be sent through the mail. Want to help our deficit problem, lets start by selling the post office to businesses like Fed-ex and UPS. It will take a huge burden off the tax payers and really doesn't hurt anyone in the modern world.

    August 2, 2012 at 3:47 pm |
    • Brent

      What burden on tax payers?!?!?!?! Fed Ex and UPS want nothing to do with the business. If they delivered to the amount of customers we deliver they would have been bankrupt years ago!!!!

      August 2, 2012 at 9:03 pm |

      the tax payers have NOTHING to do with the post office, and haven"t for years, so get your info right !!!!!

      August 6, 2012 at 9:00 am |

    Congress is the one responsible for this mess. They need to pay the bill.

    August 2, 2012 at 1:23 pm |
  8. manning El Paso, TX

    A six year for congress and the president, This do nothing congress has hurt the American people especially GOP in the house Boehner and Cantor they everything they can to turn this country into a third world country.

    August 2, 2012 at 1:16 pm |
  9. Jim Thomas

    Sell the P.O. to UPS and FED EX. They know how to run a business.Anything the government has it's grubby hands in they manage to screw it up big time.Jim Thomas Phx.Az.

    August 2, 2012 at 12:58 pm |
  10. Pastor Dennis

    They could before 2006! When the "clowns of D.C." (Congress) passed a bill whereby the Post Office had to "pay" this ridiculous bill!! When our we ever going to learn~ we need TERM LIMITS (six years MAX!!) for these clowns..

    Pastor Dennis of Chicago area

    August 2, 2012 at 10:27 am |

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