Postal Workers Rally For Federal Retirement Funding Change

Thirteen rallies were held around the state Tuesday, including one in Bloomington.

Around 50 local postal workers gathered Tuesday afternoon at Bloomington’s Showers Plaza, seeking support for federal legislation which would rescind a 2006 law that requires the postal service to pre-fund 75 years of future retiree benefits.

National Association of Letter Carriers regional president Ken Hill said the law has cost the post office billions since its passage.

“All the money that pays for the employees, that pays for the buildings, for the equipment that’s used, comes from the selling stamps, from the selling of priority mail, PO box services,” Hill said. “We’re a company, we’re just a company that’s run by the government.”

Hill said if the new legislation fails to pass, 120,000 jobs would be at risk. Retired postal worker Lyle Denny said there are many misconceptions about the postal service. But he does not want people to think the USPS is asking for a bailout.

“We’re not asking for America to save our business, we’re just asking for this problem that was created in 2006 by Congress and probably a well-meaning group of people, but they really overdid it,” he said. Once they fix this problem we will be able to take care of ourselves just fine, and stay in the black as we have.”

Postal workers admit times are changing, but say the postal service can find a way to survive the proliferation of e-mail just as it survived the invention of the telegraph, the telephone and the television.

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