Postmaster General Testifies Before the House Committee on Oversight and Reform
US Strong news – Washington, DC: The United States Postal Service USPS reports 8.24.2020.
Below is the oral statement prepared for delivery by Postmaster General Louis DeJoy before today’s hearing by the House Committee on Oversight and Reform.
“Good morning, Chairwoman Maloney, Ranking Member Comer, and members of the Committee.
I’m proud to be with you today on behalf of the 630,000 dedicated women and men of the United States Postal Service.
On June 15th, I became America’s 75th Postmaster General. Since that time, for a variety of reasons, there has been a great deal of attention to the Postal Service by our elected officials, the media and the American people.
I want to begin by assuring this committee and the American public that the Postal Service is fully capable and committed to delivering the nation’s ballots securely and on-time.
This sacred duty is my number one priority between now and election day.
To be clear, we will do everything we can to handle and deliver Election Mail in a manner consistent with the proven processes and procedures that we have relied on for years. Nevertheless, I encourage all Americans who choose to vote by mail to request their ballots early and to vote early, as a common sense best practice.
As part of this conversation, there are many inaccuracies about my actions that I wish to again correct.
First, I did not direct the removal of blue collection boxes or the removal of mail processing equipment.
Second, I did not direct the cut back on hours at any of our post offices.
Finally, I did not direct the elimination or any cutback in overtime.
I did however suspend these practices, to remove any misperceptions about our commitment to delivering the nation’s election mail.
Any further assertions by the media or elected officials is furthering a false narrative to the American People.
Now let me describe the two actions I have taken in the 70 days since my appointment.
I came to the Postal Service with decades of experience in solving large and complex logistical problems.
I planned to use this experience to help lead the operating change required for the Postal Service to grow and embark on a path of sustainability.
On the day of my swearing in-the Postal Service Inspector General issued an astonishing report about the schedule delays in Postal Service transportation and the substantial cost associated with our weakness in this fundamental operating principle.
Upon review, I directed the Postal Service operations team to develop and execute on a plan to improve our adherence to the transportation schedules of our over 40,000 trips a day.
We have accomplished this goal-as our on-time departures are approaching 98% and wasteful extra trips are down by over 70%.
While we have had a temporary service decline which should not have happened, we are fixing this.
In fact, as of last week, service improved across all major mail and package categories, and I am laser-focused on improving service for the American public.
The second of two changes I’ve made while Postmaster General is installing a new organizational reporting structure to better align talent and resources, to instill greater accountability for performance and to focus the organization on service and growth.
These two changes, creating our new on-time transportation network and designing an engaged functional organizational structure, will be the catalyst for the significant improvements in cost, performance and growth that I plan for this vital American Institution.
Madam Chairwoman, the women and men of the Postal Service have demonstrated extraordinary commitment to our mission of service throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
In every community in America, we continue to work to keep our employees and customers safe as we fulfill our essential role in delivering the medications, benefit checks and financial statements the public depends upon.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, there has been a public outpouring of support for our postal employees as they performed their essential service throughout the nation. This is a well-deserved testament to their dedication.
Chairwoman Maloney; Ranking Member Comer; I hope we can agree that the financial state of the Postal Service is unacceptable and needs to be fixed.
I look forward to working with you and this committee and our stakeholders to restore the financial health of the United States Postal Service and to improve the way we serve the American public.
This concludes my remarks. I welcome any questions that you and the committee may have.”
Oral Statement of USPS Board of Governors Chairman Robert Duncan Before the House Committee on Oversight and Reform
WASHINGTON, DC — Below is the oral statement prepared for delivery by Postal Service Board of Governors Chairman Robert Duncan before today’s hearing by the House Committee on Oversight and Reform.
“Thank you, Chairwoman Maloney, Ranking Member Comer, and members of the Committee, for inviting me to speak today.
My name is Mike Duncan, and for the past two years I have been honored to serve
as Chairman of the Board of Governors for the United States Postal Service.
Throughout my life, I have looked for ways to help strengthen and support institutions important to American communities.
That’s why I spent five years serving on the Board of the Tennessee Valley Authority, and why I serve on the Board of Alice Lloyd College near my home in Kentucky.
When I accepted this position, I did so because of my admiration for the United States Postal Service and its public service mission.
I have spent my life in rural Appalachia, and I know how important the Postal Service is to communities like mine.
I also know the Postal Service provides important jobs to more than 630,000 Americans – which at one time included my own grandfather, who delivered mail by horseback in East Tennessee.
Since I joined the Board, I have made it a point to get on the road, to visit Postal facilities, meet our workers, and speak directly to our customers.
These conversations have only deepened my understanding for and of – the importance of the Postal Service.
Serving on the Board of Governors for this institution is a significant responsibility.
The Governors, by statute, represent the public interest.
That means I’ll always remember its special role in our nation.
And it means I can never forget the challenges that are putting us at-risk.
These challenges should come as no surprise to the members of this body.
On two occasions, I have sent you the Postal Service’s Annual Report to Congress.
In each of those communications, I wrote that “the Postal Service’s business model is broken and will only produce widening losses in the coming years, absent dramatic changes.”
Last fall, Postmaster General Megan Brennan notified the Board of her impending retirement.
And in response, the Board immediately recognized that we would be faced with the most important decision we would make as Governors – the selection of a new Postmaster General.
The Board agreed that the Postal Service would benefit from a transformational leader.
One who could help us build upon its inherent strengths and confront its longstanding challenges.
The Postal Service is an amazing institution, and we can do a lot to make it better.
But we are unable to fix our broken business model or control our own pricing
without the help of Congress and the Postal Regulatory Commission.
What we can do is increase our efficiency and cut down on unnecessary expenses.
We can also focus on marketability and modernization, while reducing some expenses.
Business as usual is not an option.
It is for these reasons, that after an organized, deliberate, and thorough search process, the Board selected Louis DeJoy to serve as our nation’s 75th Postmaster General.
He is the fifth Postmaster General since 1971 to join the institution from the private sector, and we believe that private sector experience can be an asset in identifying ways to improve the Postal Service. In addition, Mr. DeJoy has decades of experience in improving and managing sophisticated logistics chains for Fortune 100 companies.
And as a major contractor to the U.S. Postal Service for more than 25 years, he has a deep knowledge about the institution and how it can be strengthened.
Like the Postmaster General, the Board has full confidence in the Postal Service’s ability to perform for the American people this election season.
Five years from now, the United States will celebrate the 250th anniversary of an American Postal Service.
Throughout our nation’s history, this institution has delivered for the American people.
Now, we all have a sacred responsibility to preserve, defend, and strengthen this organization for the generations to come.
Thank you for your time, and I welcome any questions.”