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WASHINGTON – American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) President and CEO Donna Harman today issued the following statement regarding the passage of the Postal Service Reform Act of 2016 in the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.
“We appreciate Chairman Chaffetz and Ranking Member Cummings’ leadership on the introduction of legislation aimed at improving the financial viability of the U.S. Postal Service. AF&PA’s top priority in comprehensive postal reform is rate stability and customer service if mail is to compete with ever-increasing options to reach consumers. We support legislative measures that help the USPS achieve long-term viability by realigning its outdated cost structure, encouraging new revenue sources, and leveraging its unique infrastructure to meet the service needs of future customers.
“While we agree that USPS must seek ways to grow revenue and innovate to increase its value to customers, it is equally important that future postal rates enable the mail to be a cost competitive option for business-related communications, which represent 90 percent of mail volume.
“Acknowledging the critical need for legislation we recognize that the proposed 2.15% rate increase in the Committee’s draft may be a component of comprehensive reform. We strongly oppose rate increases that are not a part of comprehensive reform that addresses the root causes of financial insolvency, implements checks and balances to provide long-term price predictability for mailers, and encourages cost-control incentives for the USPS.
“AF&PA looks forward to working with the Committee as this bill moves forward to ensure that the vital services provided by the Postal Service are maintained for all Americans.”
The American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) serves to advance a sustainable U.S. pulp, paper, packaging, tissue and wood products manufacturing industry through fact-based public policy and marketplace advocacy. AF&PA member companies make products essential for everyday life from renewable and recyclable resources and are committed to continuous improvement through the industry’s sustainability initiative - Better Practices, Better Planet 2020. The forest products industry accounts for approximately 4 percent of the total U.S. manufacturing GDP, manufactures over $200 billion in products annually, and employs approximately 900,000 men and women. The industry meets a payroll of approximately $50 billion annually and is among the top 10 manufacturing sector employers in 47 states. Visit AF&PA online at www.afandpa.org or follow us on Twitter @ForestandPaper.