The Imploding US Postal Service bailout
PSRA is big on financial help but falls woefully short on reform. Its central feature is a $107 billion in taxpayer assistance to the U.S. Postal Service (USPS). The law accomplishes this by forgiving defaults on retiree health care payments and transferring some obligations to the already heavily burdened Medicare system.
Three government reports since April 20, 2023 show that the financial assumptions Congress used to enact PSRA were way off. The new reports also confirm Congress should have been more diligent in demanding answers from USPS, as well as in demanding true reforms.
For starters, USPS now says it will lose $56 billion more than it represented to Congress before the 2022 votes.
In its March 2021 10-year strategic plan, USPS said it would cumulatively break even in the years 2021-30 if PRSA were passed and if it were forgiven an additional $14 billion in pension obligations. On April 27, 2023, in an update on the strategic report, USPS said it now expects to lose $70 billion over that period.