Journal Express, Knoxville, IA

Letters to the Editor

March 1, 2013

More information about Postal Service

To the Editor:

The latest announcement by the Postmaster General requires a little background. Neither the Postmaster General, nor anyone else, can unilaterally enforce a switch to five-day delivery without Congressional approval.

Prior to 2006, Congress had unfairly forced the Postal Service to pay for pensions earned by employees for their service in the military. This money should have been paid by the Treasury. (In 2012, the portion of letter carriers who served in the military stood at 21 percent. The veteran population peaked in the 1980s, when half of all carriers were veterans.)

The Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act of 2006 was passed to fix that, returning billions to the Postal Service. Because Congress decided that the bill must be budget-neutral, they concocted a scheme designed to continue the flow of postal funds into the Treasury’s ledger.

In that same bill, they required the Postal Service to fork over $5.5 billion every year to pre-fund the 75 years’ worth of future retiree health benefits within 10 years, a burden that no other company or agency is required to do, not even Congress. How many companies do you know that are setting aside funds for employees who will retire 75 years from now?

Because the Postal Service has been an independent agency of the government since 1971, it makes all of its money from postage sales and services. The Postal Services pays its own bills.

At the time the bill was passed, the USPS could afford it, so it wasn’t a problem until the economy sank into recession. The law never took into account the problems that every business has faced since the recession began, which is reduced revenue. Yet, every year, the Postal Service has been required to hand over $5.5 billion to pad Congress’s coffers and feed their budget until the USPS has handed over all of its operating capital, all of its $15 billion borrowing authority and now has “defaulted” on pre-funding retirement.

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Letters to the Editor
  • Letter: Disagrees with Shivvers To the Editor: I read, with interest, Ms. Shivvers' comments in her opinion piece "Another View-Breaking Bad in Iowa" in the Feb. 14, 2014, edition of the Knoxville Journal-Express. It is the first time I have heard today's agriculture compared to th

    March 6, 2014

  • Letter to the Editor-Bravo To the Editor: I'd like to take a moment and say, "Bravo!" to Charlotte Shivvers for her insightful column of February 14, "Another View - Breaking Bad in Iowa." Speaking truth to power happens rarely these days and when it does, it's cause for celeb

    February 27, 2014

  • Letter to the Editor-Marilyn Bontrager

    February 14, 2014

  • Letter to the Editor-Jay Bender

    November 1, 2013

  • Letter to the Editor-Bill McCroskey

    November 1, 2013

  • Letter to the Editor-Brent Hanna

    November 1, 2013

  • Support DMACC Levy 4

    Steve I am writing to you to take exception to your House of Wood Article on the Des Moines Area Community College.

    September 6, 2013

  • Support DMACC Levy 3
    To the Editor:
    I read your hit piece on the upcoming vote to continue the tax levy for DMACC and would like to correct your “facts”. The first point you make is that there isn’t a DMACC campus in Knoxville and there will never be one. There is a DMACC campus in Knoxville. It is an integral part of an existing Knoxville Community School building.

    September 6, 2013

  • Support DMACC Levy 2
    To the Editor:
    Next Tuesday you have the opportunity to vote yes to continue the two levies that help support Des Moines Area Community College.  These levies are existing levies that total 26.5 cents per $1,000 of assessed value.  It will not raise taxes. 

    September 6, 2013

  • Support DMACC Levy
    To the Editor:
    I am writing as a member of the DMACC Board of Trustees for 10 years. I have seen DMACC grow substantially to meet the needs of many additional students and the requests of businesses.

    September 6, 2013

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