Hudson Commissioners urge US Senate to pass Postal Reform Act

Anthony Vainieri

The Hudson County Board of Commissioners are urging the United States Senate to pass the Postal Service Reform Act (H.R. 3076)

The act cleared the U.S. House of Representatives by a vote of 342-92 on Feb. 8, 2022. The proposed law would require retired postal employees to enroll in Medicare when eligible, while dropping a previous mandate that forced the agency to cover its health care costs years in advance.

Maximizing Medicare participation when active postal employees retire and reach age 65 will reduce health care costs for both the Postal Service and participants, the commissioners say, because Medicare is the first-payer insurer for its enrollees while costs covered by Postal-only health plans would be reduced.

This would lower the Postal Service’s health care expenses by hundreds of millions of dollars annually and reduce future liability for retiree health benefits by approximately $50 billion over the next decade, according to the House Oversight Committee.

The proposed Postal Service Reform Act would also codify an integrated delivery network of packages and mail together six days a week. This provision is supported by the Postal Service, the Postal Regulatory Commission, mailers and shippers.

“This is a critical service for senior citizens who depend on the Postal Service for prescription delivery, and for small businesses which get products to their customers with the Postal Service’s affordable prices. It is especially important in rural America where the Postal Service is often the only carrier,” the commissioners said, together, in a statement.

Throughout the pandemic, postal workers have delivered everything from medications, essential goods, family letters and holiday gifts to citizens across the country. Door-to-door delivery services never stopped because of the 6-day integrated delivery network, which the Postal Service Reform Act would codify into law.

Board Chairman Anthony Vainieri said copies of the urging resolution would be transmitted to President Joseph R. Biden Jr., Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sens. Robert Menendez and Cory Booker.

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