AF&PA Statement on Postal Service Reform Legislation

March 27, 2012 (Press Release) - American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) President and CEO Donna Harman [on March 26] issued the following statement regarding urgent Senate consideration of the bipartisan postal reform legislation.

"The bipartisan Postal Reform legislation authored by Senators Collins, Carper, Leiberman and Brown would help the United States Postal Service (USPS) achieve financial stability by encouraging new revenue sources, attracting customers and realizing cost savings. The bill goes a long way towards ensuring the financial viability and affordability of the postal system on which we all depend.

"While AF&PA believes that this legislation presents a comprehensive solution to the financial challenges faced by the USPS, we cannot support changes to the bill that would include a postal rate increase for first class mail exceeding agreed upon limits within the 2006 Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act. History tells us that a rate increase above that of inflation would have a negative impact on both postal workers and private sector jobs and sets a dangerous precedent.

"I applaud Senators Collins, Lieberman, Brown, and Carper’s vision of realizing significant structural changes throughout the postal delivery system, and urge the Senate to take up S. 1789, rejecting any attempt to include harmful rate increases."

The American Forest & Paper Association (www.afandpa.org) is the national trade association of the forest products industry, representing pulp, paper, packaging and wood products manufacturers, and forest landowners.

The forest products industry accounts for approximately 5 percent of the total U.S. manufacturing GDP. Industry companies produce about $175 billion in products annually and employ nearly 900,000 men and women, exceeding employment levels in the automotive, chemicals and plastics industries. The industry meets a payroll of approximately $50 billion annually and is among the top 10 manufacturing sector employers in 48 states.

SOURCE: AF&PA