However, the U.S. Postal Service is expected to run out of money by September unless Congress steps up and issues an emergency fund, according to Postmaster-General Megan Brennan in a press conference on Thursday.
Brennan stated that COVID-19 “is having a devastating effect on our business,” at a time when “America needs the Postal Service more than ever.”
USPS is expected to lose at least $13 billion in because of the economy shutting down over the coronavirus crisis. They also foresee losing billions more over the next decade.
The Postal Service Board of Governors is asking Congress to supply $25 billion in emergency funding for USPS, as well as an additional $25 billion for their “shovel-ready” modernization projects, and even more…another $25 billion as a loan from the U.S. Treasury.
It’s unclear whether any of that funding will come through.
With COVID-19 affecting our entire economy, many businesses are in need of financial support to stay afloat.
Over 600 postal office employees have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to The Wall Street Journal. 12 of these employees have died, and thousands have started self-quarantine with fear of having it.
This has caused a lot of delayed deliveries, especially in hot spot areas such as New York, which has over 161,000 cases of COVID-19 and over 7,000 deaths so far.
According to The New York Times:
Steven Mnuchin, the Treasury secretary, squashed a bipartisan attempt to send the agency emergency funds last month, insisting instead that his department be given new authority to lend up to $10 billion to the Postal Service on terms it helps set, according to officials familiar with the negotiations who described them on the condition of anonymity.
Some lawmakers, postal union representatives and others who rely on the service now fear that the Trump administration is trying to use the current crisis to achieve conservatives’ longstanding goal of nudging the mail service toward privatization—either by setting highly prescriptive loan terms or by essentially forcing it into bankruptcy. That would aid commercial competitors like FedEx and UPS.
“The Postal Service is fighting for its survival, putting in jeopardy the careers and paychecks of its 650,000 employees—as well as the more than $1.7 trillion mailing industry that employs more than 7.5 million people,”Democratic Rep. Gerald E. Connolly of Virginia
“We cannot allow the Postal Service to collapse,” Connolly continued. “To do so would deepen our nation’s economic crisis and eliminate an important lifeline for individuals who rely on the Postal Service’s 1 billion deliveries of lifesaving prescription deliveries and eviscerate the very infrastructure we need to administer the upcoming elections.”Democratic Rep. Gerald E. Connolly of Virginia
From all that we have gathered, the U.S. postal service is holding on by a thread. We just have to hope that Congress steps up and provides them with the funds that they need to get through this difficult time.