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USPS running out of cash; may default on pensions
KGO ^ | 9/5/11 | KGO

Posted on 09/05/2011 9:37:00 AM PDT by mdittmar

The postal service says it's running out of cash and may not be able to make a $5.5 billion pension payment this month.

In fact, the postmaster general says things are so tight, the postal service may have to shut down this winter unless congress takes emergency action to stabilize its finances.

(Excerpt) Read more at abclocal.go.com ...


TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: postalservice; postoffice; usmail; usps
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To big to fail?
1 posted on 09/05/2011 9:37:04 AM PDT by mdittmar
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To: mdittmar

They just need more money! /sarc


2 posted on 09/05/2011 9:37:55 AM PDT by unixfox (Abolish Slavery, Repeal The 16th Amendment!)
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To: mdittmar

Their solution-GIVE US MONEY OR WE’LL SHUT DOWN.


3 posted on 09/05/2011 9:39:46 AM PDT by HarleyD
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To: mdittmar

God forbid they actually try to figure out how to do their work more efficiently.

I for one would be perfectly happy to get mail delivered 3x per week.


4 posted on 09/05/2011 9:40:50 AM PDT by VoiceOfBruck (Welcome to Costco. I love you. Welcome to Costco. I love you.)
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To: mdittmar

LOL. More like too important to Congress to fail.


5 posted on 09/05/2011 9:43:23 AM PDT by freespirited (Stupid people are ruining America. --Herman Cain)
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To: mdittmar
Their Pensions are ludicrous,How did they get that kind of money given to them?
6 posted on 09/05/2011 9:44:02 AM PDT by Cheetahcat (Carnival commie side show, started November 4 2008 ,A date that will live in Infamy.)
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To: mdittmar

Another mess which will fall on Obama’s plate.

Obama will blame it on the failures of Bush to deal with this problem.

I will never understand why it has been okay, for almost three years now, for Obama to say he inherited problems, yadda, yadda, yadda, and the liberals and MSM lap it all up.

Every president in history has inherited problems from the previous administration, and/or, had to deal with onoing problems which festered and were not dealt with. You might think that true leadership would be to come up with your plans to solve these problems, rather than complain about them.

And that’s especially true when you consider the grueling process involved in running for president in the first place. Obama wanted that job badly, and things fell into place for him in the primaries, and the general election. Being president is an honor, a priviledge, and a ton of hard work. But if you are a real leader, you will not sit around and complain, you will come up with plans to deal with the issues of the day.

I’m sure Obama will say that we have to have a solvent postal service, blame Bush for not solving this problem, then call for a tax increase to pay for it all.


7 posted on 09/05/2011 9:44:02 AM PDT by Dilbert San Diego
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To: mdittmar

Well it is going to be up to our Next president NOT to pardon Zippy,He badly needs jailed!


8 posted on 09/05/2011 9:46:00 AM PDT by Cheetahcat (Carnival commie side show, started November 4 2008 ,A date that will live in Infamy.)
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To: HarleyD

At this point, I don’t care. I will make do without the post office for the chance to see a Gov’t organization actually suffer the consequences it has brought on itself.


9 posted on 09/05/2011 9:47:45 AM PDT by PGR88 (I'm so open-minded my brains fell out)
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To: mdittmar

The beginning of “the spiral?”


10 posted on 09/05/2011 9:50:30 AM PDT by papertyger
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To: mdittmar

Shouldn’t the pension fund have been in safe keeping somewhere?


11 posted on 09/05/2011 9:50:30 AM PDT by Beowulf9
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To: mdittmar
But...but...but if the post office closes down, the policemen, firefighters, teachers, children and the elderly won't be able to get any mail! Those wascally Wepublicans! It's all their fault.

sarc/

12 posted on 09/05/2011 9:50:44 AM PDT by FlingWingFlyer (Coming November 2012 - The End of an Error.)
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To: mdittmar
The average salary for these guys is $86,000 a year.

AVERAGE.

There are scores of thousands of uneducated boobs pulling in 6 figure jobs.

The average Federal salary (FBI agents, Dept of Defense employees, etc) is $63,000 a year - and many of these employees have masters degrees and specialized training.

The postal union has got away with murder in recent years. Their pensions are lavish. Our military heroes are not paid that generously in retirement!

Something has to give.

13 posted on 09/05/2011 9:50:54 AM PDT by SkyPilot
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To: SkyPilot

BS!!! Show the source of this misinformation.


14 posted on 09/05/2011 9:55:56 AM PDT by ltrman61
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To: Cheetahcat
Their Pensions are ludicrous,How did they get that kind of money given to them?

Unions of the AFL-CIO
American Postal Workers Union (APWU),National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC)

15 posted on 09/05/2011 9:56:41 AM PDT by mdittmar (i)
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To: SkyPilot

Link please! Ii is hard to beleive average post office worker is getting paid $86,000. May be the managerial staff.


16 posted on 09/05/2011 10:03:04 AM PDT by federal__reserve
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To: mdittmar
Can some current or former USPS employee explain to the rest of us just what the "reorganization" of the Post Office did? I believe the former civil service swamp of patronage jobs underwent what I thought was a "privatization" in the early 70's.

Prior to the changes the Postmaster General, a cabinet level position, was the dispenser of all political patronage jobs for the administration.

Regards,
GtG

17 posted on 09/05/2011 10:05:31 AM PDT by Gandalf_The_Gray (I live in my own little world, I like it 'cuz they know me here.)
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To: mdittmar
The Postal Service is in trouble because of a Bush‐era (2006) law that requires the USPS to massively  prefund the cost of retiree health benefits over the next 75 years in just 10 years’ time. This cost covers  not only current employees, but employees who have yet to be hired – and it is on top of the cost for  health benefits for current retirees.  No other company or agency in America is required to pre‐fund  future retiree health benefits.  No rational company would choose to make pre‐funding future retiree health benefits the highest  corporate priority in today’s economy – and no company would use all its borrowing capacity to do so.   But that is precisely what the Postal Service has been forced to do.  As a result, it will soon exhaust its $15  billion borrowing authority ‐‐ a line of credit established in 1970 to permit the USPS to invest in its retail  and mail processing networks and to keep its huge vehicle fleet up to date.       In 2005, the Postal Service did not even have to use its borrowing authority. It had no outstanding debt;  today it has $13.2 billion in debt.  Virtually all this debt has been used to finance the pre‐funding of retiree  health benefits ‐‐ not to restructure the Postal Service’s network of facilities, or to replace its old vehicle  fleet, or to invest in new products and services to meet the emerging needs of the nation’s economy.    No other federal agency in any of the three branches of government is required to pre‐fund future retiree  health benefits.  Congress mandated prefunding for the USPS, but it does not pre‐fund and none of its  special agencies ‐‐ the General Accountability Office, the Congressional Research Service, the  Congressional Budget Office or the Library of Congress – do either.  The USPS is financially self‐sufficient.  It pays for its operations through the sale of postage and has not  received any taxpayer subsidy since 1982.  In 1971, before postal reorganization took effect, Treasury  appropriations covered nearly 25% of the P.O.D.’s budget.  In today’s dollars, that would cost taxpayers  approximately $16.25 billion.  So postal reorganization has saved taxpayers tens of billions of dollars since  1970.  The Postal Service delivers 40% of the world’s mail Critics complain that labor costs make up a higher percentage of total USPS costs (80%) than they do in  the private companies (50%‐65%).  But the comparison is misleading.  The USPS is a universal service  provider of basic services that requires daily delivery to 7 ‐8 times as many addresses each day than the  private companies, which focus on parcels and freight services that are targeted to a much narrower  range of recipients. The USPS function is inherently more labor intensive.  Indeed, the Postal Service’s last  mile delivery network is so efficient that the private companies rely on it to reach places they don’t serve.   The Parcel Select product allows private companies to drop ship to post offices for last mile delivery by  letter carriers – the Fed Ex version of this service, FedEx SmartPost is the fastest growing division within  the Memphis‐based company.   Facts...they are a terrible thing. Freepers with USPSDS should be ashamed of their ignorance. You look like a bunch of knee-jerk libs. Astounding! Conservatives claim to be against government mandates. Wonder what the response would be from Freepers if Obama mandated all companies with more than 250 employees follow the same mandate the USPS must follow on prefunding. Lets see any other company that can survive that mandate!
18 posted on 09/05/2011 10:06:14 AM PDT by ltrman61
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To: HarleyD

They want their OWN money BACK! Is it that hard to comprehend?


19 posted on 09/05/2011 10:07:31 AM PDT by ltrman61
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To: Beowulf9
Shouldn’t the pension fund have been in safe keeping somewhere?

Like Social Security?

20 posted on 09/05/2011 10:07:54 AM PDT by mdittmar (i)
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To: ltrman61
So what your saying is,
It's Bush's fault.
21 posted on 09/05/2011 10:12:12 AM PDT by mdittmar (i)
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To: Beowulf9

Their pensions are OVER FUNDED. USPS is forced to pay more than it needs to cover their pensions. can you name any other company with that mandate? Didn’t think so!


22 posted on 09/05/2011 10:14:11 AM PDT by ltrman61
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To: mdittmar
"Their Pensions are ludicrous,How did they get that kind of money given to them? Unions of the AFL-CIO American Postal Workers Union (APWU),National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC)"

Figures, that is something else that needs to go!

23 posted on 09/05/2011 10:14:39 AM PDT by Cheetahcat (Carnival commie side show, started November 4 2008 ,A date that will live in Infamy.)
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To: Cheetahcat

What are their pensions? Can you tell me? Or are you just guessing?


24 posted on 09/05/2011 10:15:24 AM PDT by ltrman61
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To: mdittmar

The facts don’t lie! Do your own research.


25 posted on 09/05/2011 10:17:51 AM PDT by ltrman61
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To: ltrman61

Well here is yoiur first problem...they shouldn’t have pensions. They should have switched from defined benefit to defined contribution like most everyone else a long time ago.

And they should lay off a lot of people like everyone else has to do. Delivering the mail ain’t rocket science.


26 posted on 09/05/2011 10:20:00 AM PDT by statered ("And you know what I mean.")
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To: mdittmar

It’s a headfake, otherwise known as a steaming pile. USPS has to prefund it’s pensions and health care out to 75 years in the future, otherwise it would be showing a $2billion profit. Can’t make a profit, so the money must be shoved into a hole somewhere. USPS will NOT shut down this winter, bank on it.


27 posted on 09/05/2011 10:25:19 AM PDT by Big Giant Head (Two years no AV, no viruses, computer runs great!)
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To: statered

That is a brilliant response!! Tell me what large companies don’t have a pension plan? And, the USPS has a defined contribution plan. It’s called Thrift Savings Plan. A 401K type program. Once again, someone too lazy to do some research.


28 posted on 09/05/2011 10:26:25 AM PDT by ltrman61
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To: Big Giant Head

Good point! And the hole it is being pushed in to is probably being used to fund other government programs.....like SS, etc.


29 posted on 09/05/2011 10:29:12 AM PDT by ltrman61
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To: statered

Are you a carrier? Or are you a rocket scientist? Anyone with less than 6 years employment can be laid off from the USPS. Unless of course you are management. NEVER a shortage of managers!


30 posted on 09/05/2011 10:33:13 AM PDT by ltrman61
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To: mdittmar
Whadya think Sam?
31 posted on 09/05/2011 10:33:47 AM PDT by New Jersey Realist (Congress doesn't care a damn about "we the people")
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To: ltrman61

You seem upset?


32 posted on 09/05/2011 10:35:11 AM PDT by mdittmar (i)
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To: ltrman61

Although I am for serious reform of the USPS, I believe that you are correct about the overfunding of the pensions. The Postmaster General has indicated that that is one thing he wants Congress to address. That said, the money that should come back to the USPS won’t fix their deficits for very long. Just using the money up is just like what the States did with their cut of the stimulus. Now its gone and the States are left with the deferred problem of what to cut now. The fact of the matter is that thanks to other modes of communication, the USPS is going to be forced to undergo a substantial downsizing. But what we will likely see is the Congress trying to please their rural constituents and thus ignore the overall realities of the situation to curry favor and buy votes. It’s like Harry Reid’s little goodies for air service to Ely, NV. The planes go empty and each passenger costs the taxpayer something like $5,000. Stuff like that is going away and it can be handled effectively or by default, your choice.


33 posted on 09/05/2011 10:35:23 AM PDT by vette6387 (Enough Already!)
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To: ltrman61

Thank you for this post. Lots of information distributed all over boiled down into one post. WAY too much knee-jerking on FreeRepublic when it comes to the Post Office.


34 posted on 09/05/2011 10:40:09 AM PDT by Big Giant Head (Two years no AV, no viruses, computer runs great!)
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To: mdittmar

Do providing facts make me seem “upset”, so be it.


35 posted on 09/05/2011 10:40:39 AM PDT by ltrman61
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To: ltrman61

The great majority of large companies do not have a pension plan. That’s just ignorance on your part.


36 posted on 09/05/2011 10:42:42 AM PDT by AlmaKing
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To: mdittmar
Another obama first.

First Presentdent to preside over the U.S. Postal Service going T's-up.

37 posted on 09/05/2011 10:45:47 AM PDT by skimbell
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To: Gandalf_The_Gray

When I was hired as a Mailman in 1966 I was hired by a Postmaster who was appointed by whichever political party was in at that time. After the strike in the early 70’s and the switch from the United States Post Office to The United States Postal Service all promotions were “in house”. That was the beginning of the end. Most everyone wanted to be a Postmaster or at least a supervisor. Guys were ratting on each other and/or stabbing each other in the back to get promoted—and it worked. Problem was—the most capable were not the ones promoted. Still that way.

In 1984 all government and Postal employees were put into Social Security. Prior to that they were in the Federal Civil Service Retirement System. Like me, they never paid a dime into Social Security. The new hires (post 1/1/84) were put into the Federal employees Retirement System. They are GIVEN 1% of their pay in a 401k type account plus they have the opportunity for matching funds. Plus Social Security. This can mount up but the “average” Mail Carrier/Clerk will never have an 80,000 dollar + pension.
After 33 plus years actual service plus 2 years military service time, plus nine months of accumulated sick leave I have a pension of almost 2,000 dollars a month. NO Social Security.

My opinion—Eliminate Saturday delivery, Close tons of small Post Offices where the one or two people who work there make more in a year than they take in in a year, eliminate tons of jobs that have NOTHING to do with delivering the mail.


38 posted on 09/05/2011 10:48:24 AM PDT by PeteyBoy (The best part of waking up--is waking up.)
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To: ltrman61

I don’t make jokes. I just watch the government and report the facts.
Will Rogers


39 posted on 09/05/2011 10:49:09 AM PDT by mdittmar (i)
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To: vette6387

I agree with you. The majority of carriers have no problem with a 5 day delivery week for example. That would solve a lot of the overtime and under staffing right there. That is an area I differ with the unions on, as do most of the rank and file. The Unions are afraid of losing members because a five day week means less employees. The rank and file know it is needed because of the points you make. The rural areas and smaller offices are going to have to change. And when you try to close a small post office in a small town..you get a firestorm. Many people on here may not like the USPS, but go to a small community and tell them you are closing their PO. Look out!


40 posted on 09/05/2011 10:51:53 AM PDT by ltrman61
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To: ltrman61
"What are their pensions? Can you tell me? Or are you just guessing?"

I am seeing figures of $83,500 and better @20 years as salary,Not bad for a Semi Skilled Job with bennies would be $112,000. the pension is easy to figure from that.

41 posted on 09/05/2011 10:52:42 AM PDT by Cheetahcat (Carnival commie side show, started November 4 2008 ,A date that will live in Infamy.)
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To: AlmaKing

Really, please provide a link.


42 posted on 09/05/2011 10:54:17 AM PDT by ltrman61
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To: PeteyBoy

There may be a very few Letter Carriers or Clerks who are making colse to the $80,000.00 a year referenced to earlier in this thread but that would require a TON of overtime. High basic pay right now is about 54,000 a year. And—they pay a good amount of their health benefit plan. We always did. My Mailmans’ contribution to his family plan is $147.00 per pay period—every two weeks.


43 posted on 09/05/2011 10:56:00 AM PDT by PeteyBoy (The best part of waking up--is waking up.)
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To: PeteyBoy

Why was the USPS forced to pre-fund their plans? It makes me think someone was looking forward enough to see insolvency becoming a major problem, probably as it was know that paper mail was going to decline drastically and no-layoff clauses were in effect in contracts.


44 posted on 09/05/2011 10:56:28 AM PDT by AlmaKing
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To: Cheetahcat

link? That is certainly NOT for rank and file workers. They are paid hourly, not salary. Top pay for a carrier is 56k. Other crafts are less or similar. Again, please detail exact pension and benefits figures. Surely you can find it.


45 posted on 09/05/2011 10:58:43 AM PDT by ltrman61
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To: PeteyBoy

You know what your talking about.


46 posted on 09/05/2011 11:00:59 AM PDT by mdittmar (i)
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To: AlmaKing

Ask you local Congresscritter. And then ask them why Congress does not prefund...or any other company.


47 posted on 09/05/2011 11:01:07 AM PDT by ltrman61
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To: PeteyBoy

Exactly....$300/month Blue Cross for a family plan. No vision coverage/basic dental. Not exactly the “free” health care we supposedly get.


48 posted on 09/05/2011 11:04:51 AM PDT by ltrman61
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To: ltrman61

570,000 employees and they don’t know how to balance their budget.


49 posted on 09/05/2011 11:05:05 AM PDT by blueunicorn6 ("A crack shot and a good dancer")
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To: ltrman61
The facts don’t lie! Do your own research

The problem with the USPS pension "fund" is that the Congress has done with it what they did with Sociel Security - they spent it and put IOUs in the box. While Republicans spend such too - it wasn't Bush that did it even if it happened on his watch - if he had a full control of the huse and Senate, you might blame him, but the USPS, like all government/union run entities has been terribly inefficient and has priced itself out of business - like Socialism, Unions tend to do more harm than good these days by sucking the lifeblood out of what they infest.

50 posted on 09/05/2011 11:10:07 AM PDT by trebb ("If a man will not work, he should not eat" From 2 Thes 3)
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