The U.S. Postal Service will raise its prices faster, slow some of its mail delivery and close some of its facilities as part of a business plan embattled Postmaster General Louis DeJoy said on Tuesday will allow his agency to break even in 10 years.
The plan was widely anticipated and quickly earned both plaudits and criticisms from stakeholders, though its details contained few surprises after DeJoy spent months teasing them out. The proposal to increase prices has drawn the ire of the Postal Service’s largest customers, while the shift toward slower mail delivery windows has angered lawmakers and other postal observers.
While DeJoy called his solutions “a bold plan and a break from the past,” neither of those two major proposals is particularly novel. DeJoy’s predecessor, Megan Brennan, sought full autonomy in setting USPS rates, something the agency’s regulator rejected, though it did recently allow for larger-than-inflation increases. Brennan’s predecessor, Patrick Donahoe, oversaw the consolidation of hundreds of mail processing plants to allow for slower mail delivery.