Changes are coming to the United States postal service, and they might not be welcomed by consumers who pay for stamps. In late August there will be a price increase for the cost of stamps and we will be facing longer delivery times for mail to arrive.
There was a proposed increase in stamp prices that was ultimately approved Monday by the postal regulatory commission. The regulator found the higher prices for stamps are in line with the needs of the postal service. Back in May the United States Postal service was considering raising the price of the stamp from 55 cents to 58 cents per stamp. The price increase will go into effect on August 29th.
The increase of the stamp price is all part of the Postmaster Louis Dejoy’s plan to put the Postal service back on track to profitability. Another part of the plan is to slow down the standards of mail delivery, which caused concern with the Postal Regulatory Commission. The PCR says that 40% of mail would take an additional 2 days to be delivered to you.
There are critics of the decision that is being made by Dejoy. These critics say that it would have the largest impact on states in the West and on the elderly in rural America. Even though the Postmaster has been making the argument that slower delivery time would save the Postal Agency money, the PCR says there is no evidence of this actually being true.
“I do not believe that the Postal Service has proven its case for reducing service standards for all Americans,” wrote PRC commissioner Ashley Poling in the report. Poling was nominated to the commission by former President Donald Trump who also appointed DeJoy to his role as postmaster.
Poling added “The plan also fails to provide sufficient evidence to justify exceptionally limited cost savings projections, use of a flawed demand model and unfounded notions that the majority of American citizens and businesses will actually experience increased satisfaction with these sweeping service cuts.”
In response to the PCR, the United States Postal Service said they are “moving forward with our plan” but will review the regulator’s recommendations.
A group of 21 state Attorney Generals last month asked the PRC to reject the United States Postal Services plan to slow deliveries, calling it a “misguided effort” that would harm election mail, mailings of essential documents such as passports and birth and death records and have disproportionate impact on the elderly, rural residents and the disabled. The states joining the petition range from California to North Carolina.
One thing is for sure. Stamp prices are rising and possibly your mail delivery time will take longer than it used to.