March 23, 2021 – On behalf of the hundreds of nonprofit organizations that use USPS mail to raise funds, distribute publications, build membership, communicate with members, donors, constituents, and lawmakers, we thank the leadership of the U.S. Postal Service for their work on a new strategic plan. We will take some time to read and analyze the new plan before offering a more complete assessment.
We strongly believe that the USPS must continue to be an affordable, reliable public service to all Americans, including the organizations and businesses that provide approximately 90 percent of its funding. Key to doing this is retention and growth of existing mail customers. The postal network depends on adequate volume to fund universal service.
Additionally, adequate funding for the many non-businesslike functions the postal agency performs is of utmost importance. We urge Congress to accurately measure the universal public service costs of USPS and provide public funding on an annual basis, as it did for 200 years.
We want to make it clear that we were not consulted or briefed on this plan, in spite the fact that nonprofits mail 10 percent of all mail volume.
We also believe that relying on rate increases above inflation on captive market dominant mailers for $44 billion of $160 billion in projected losses will not be effective. Mailers will only accelerate their exit from the USPS. Requiring customers to cover over one-fourth of the goal with higher prices has not been a component of previous successful industry restructurings, such as autos.
The USPS rate structure has not been “frozen” since 2006: First-Class stamps, which are very important to nonprofits, have increased 41 percent from 39 cents to 55 cents.
The Consumer Price Index cap on postage increases is not an “experiment” that the Postal Regulatory Commission has the authority to end. The CPI cap is a requirement written into law by Congress that is state of the art pricing regulation necessary to protect captive mailers from the monopoly power granted by Congress to the postal agency.
The Alliance of Nonprofit Mailers is the leading voice for nonprofits on postal issues for over 40 years.