Congressman Ross Open to Tradeoffs in Postal Reform Bill

In a set of tweets relating to a tweet promoting the Post, “Congressman Ross Clarifies His Position on Retiree Obligations,” Congressman Ross states that RepDennisRossDennis Ross @CEP_Observer It is not in there now, but there are many things that could change about the bill. Open to tradeoffs.   The full discussion in Twitter is as follows:   CEP_ObserverAlan Robinson Did @RepDennisRoss change his position on #usps FERS overpayment? What else did he say about retiree payments? http://t.co/BWtXWlb   RepDennisRossDennis Ross @ @CEP_Observer didn’t change positions at all. even OPM says FERS is a diff story than CSRS. still, FERS “overpmt” is not in hand.   CEP_ObserverAlan Robinson @ @RepDennisRoss Then [...] Read more »

Congressman Ross Clarifies His Position on Retiree Obligations

In response to a comment on his Facebook Page, Congressman Ross clarified his position on prefunding and overpayments of retiree liability. Doc Piper’s Comment Rep. Ross, if you truely denied the overpayment of USPS to OPM, you are intentionally lying. OPM collects it into their budget with no reguard to the overpayment. If you are an honest Representative you will admit the money paid and demand it into a trust fund, so that no taxpayer will have to supplement the USPS. But you canot deny the payment made and then refuse its return. That’s a plain lie. Congressman Ross’s Response Post #1 FERS, perhaps, but not CSRS. The prefunding requirements is [...] Read more »

Is Privatization Worse for Labor than the Issa/Ross bill?

Congressman Dennis Ross made the following comment in a discussion on his Facebook page suggesting the alternative to the Issa/Ross bill is privatization.  The quote in full: I have sat down with NALC, Rural Carriers, APWU and many others. I have met with the PMG on countless occasions. What your union wont tell you is, the status quo, will lead to privatization of the USPS in less than 5 years and …a nullification of every contract. The current path of the USPS is financially unsustainable and for the last time, it has NOTHING to do with prefunding. Those are the facts.  Congressman Ross is correct that the current path is financially [...] Read more »

A Creditor’s Plan for The Postal Service

The Issa/Ross Postal Reform Bill presents a future for the Postal Service and stakeholders that serves the interests of two of the Postal Service’s creditors: the Office of Personnel Management, to whom the Postal Service currently must make payments for retiree benefits and the Department of Labor, which administers workers compensation programs.   The bill forces changes in Postal Service operations, labor contracts, and rates all designed to ensure that those payments are made according to the schedules currently in law. If the Issa/Ross Postal Reform Bill is signed into law, the Office of Personnel Management and the Department of Labor face minimal risk that the Postal Service will not pay them.  For the Office of Personnel Management [...] Read more »

FedEx Conference Call Transcripts

Seeking Alpha has published the full transcript of the FedEx 4th quarter and year end conference call that was held yesterday.   Anyone interested in the express, parcel, air freight or trucking markets should read the full transcript.  Below are some excerpts that illustrate how e-commerce is changing FedEx’s business. From the opening statement of Alan Graf, Executive Vice President and CFO Looking now at the Ground segment. Revenues climbed 15% to $2.26 billion, while operating income soared 31% to $417 million. Operating margins hit an all-time quarterly record of 18.4%. Revenue per package increased 7% primarily due to yield management actions. And package volume grew 6%, driven by increases in [...] Read more »

Is Postal Compensation too Low? In Manning, ND It Is.

Arguments over what is a competitive wage for a Postal employee is a political hot potato.   A recent article in the Dickinson, ND Press indicates that determining when a wage level is too high or too low is a lot more complicated than the arguments in Washington about postal employee compensation might suggest. Manning, ND is losing its Post Office.   Manning is an unincorporated community that is the county seat of Dunn County North Dakota.   The population of Manning is 74 and Dunn County has 3,536 residents in 2010. The closing of the Manning Post Office illustrates one of the problems in determining whether compensation is too high or too [...] Read more »

Representative Ross Indicates that Issa/Ross Bill will have no Change in Retiree Payments

In a tweet, Representative Dennis Ross hinted that the bill that Representative Darrell Issa and he will introduce tomorrow will not contain any change to the payment schedules for retiree obligations that are now contained in all other postal reform bills. RepDennisRossDennis Ross #USPS, this is why you prefund retiree benefits. http://t.co/wm1cnvI | “no one else does…” and this is where they are now. If there are no changes in the payment schedules to reflect overpayment of either FERS or retiree healthcare benefits then the Issa/Ross bill will need to find quick reductions in Postal Service costs elsewhere.   There are few options but all will likely affect both compensation to [...] Read more »

USPS Everywhere Locator Not Up to Snuff.

I just checked out the USPS Everywhere Locator and quickly identified four problems that keeps it from being user friendly. Locations are missing Stamp Consignment Locations – Stamps are sold at all Giant supermarkets in the Washington DC area.  However, the locator does not include Giant supermarkets on Blair Road in Silver Spring, or University Boulevard in Wheaton, MD.   It does include the Giant supermarket in Bethesda.    Post Offices are Missing – The Bethesda, MD Post Office is not identified in the locator.  If you switch the view to satellite and zoom in to the metro stop, you will see that Google knows where the Post Office is even if the Postal Service [...] Read more »

FedEx Earnings and SmartPost and Parcel Select

FedEx announced its earnings today.   The Associated Press reported that earnings were ahead of analyst expectations.   FedEx is forecasting strong earnings growth in its First Quarter, 2012 (which starts June 1, 2011) and all of its FY 2012  FedEx Ground delivery volume grew 6% in the quarter which is stronger than total industry growth.  This growth was paced by FedEx SmartPost where “average daily volume increased 24% due to growth in e-commerce and gains in market share. FedEx SmartPost revenue per package increased 8% primarily due to growth in higher-yielding services and increased fuel surcharges.” Since 2008, FedEx SmartPost has grown from 4.9% of FedEx Ground Revenue to 7.4% of [...] Read more »

The Death Spiral: Could it Be Driven By Service Quality as well as Costs

The previous post, “Businessweek fires the Postal Service,” identified a  recent effort of a major mailer to switch to alternative delivery.   Previously, this blog has noted that Valassis has expanded its use of alternative delivery for saturation advertising in the post, “Is it time to Choose Alternative Delivery.”  The Businessweek move may be more significant for four reasons: it represents the first time in over three decades that a non-saturation mailer has decided that alternative delivery is a better delivery option on a service basis for a large number of its recipients; it illustrates that the return on delivery costs is affected by service quality and is not just price driven;  [...] Read more »