Arbitration; Labor Disputes
This section would require that arbitrators deciding a contract dispute between the PostalService and one of its recognized unions take into consideration such relevant factors as thefinancial condition of the Postal Service. This section also includes a savings clause thatprovides that nothing in the section may not be construed to limit the relevant factors that thearbitration board may take into consideration in rendering a decision.
Postal Services and Operations
Maintenance of Delivery Service Standards.
The Postal Service announced in the fall of 2011 that it intended to eliminate its currentovernight delivery standard, which provides for delivery of first class mail within 1-3 daysanywhere in the continental United States, and replace it with a 2-3 days delivery standard. Thissection requires the Postal Service to maintain a modified overnight delivery standard for firstclass mail and periodicals for a period of 3 years. Specifically, this section requires that thePostal Service provide overnight delivery for mail that is both mailed and delivered in an areaserved by the same processing plant. This section also requires the Postal Service to maintain amaximum delivery time of 3 delivery days for first class mail within the continental UnitedStates.
Preserving Mail Processing Capacity
This section requires certain steps before the closure or consolidation of a mailprocessing facility, including: (1) a complete and published study that includes the feasibility of downsizing rather than closing the facility; (2) a 45-day public comment period after publishingthe study; (3) a 30-day period for the Postal Service to consider any concerns raised during thepublic comment period, as well as to consider the effect of the closing on the community, theeffect on travel times for affected customers, the effect on delivery times, and geographical andother characteristics of the area that may result in the closing or consolidation having a uniqueeffect; (4) the publication
on the Postal Service’s website
of a closing or consolidation justification statement that includes responses to public comments, a discussion of the effect of closure on the affected community, including any disproportionate impact on a state, region orlocality, change in travel times and distances for affected customers and delivery times for mail,and geographical factors; and (5) a waiting period of at least 15 days after the publication on theUSPS web site of the closure justification before USPS may close the processing facility.In addition, the section prohibits, for 3 years, closure or consolidation of a facility if theclosing or consolidation prevents the Postal Service from maintaining the overnight servicestandards required under section 201. The section also affirms the right to review by the PostalRegulatory Commission (PRC) where there is an allegation that a closure or consolidation wasnot in conformance with these or other service standards.
Establishment of Retail Service Standards
This section requires the Postal Service, not later than 6 months after enactment of thebill, to establish retail service standards that would guarantee its customers regular and effective