Key Notes Volume 03 Number 01

USPS Opens Round 3 in the Fight Over the Exigent Rate IncreaseThis week the Postal Service filed a brief with the U.S. Court of Appeals, District of Columbia, arguing that the Postal Regulatory Commission was wrong in its most recent ruling on the exigent rate increase.  The Postal Service wants the case remanded to the Commission for further review so that it can renew its arguments for an extension of the 4.3 percent surcharge, which otherwise will come to an end sometime this spring, probably in April.  The main issue at stake at this point in the proceedings is the Postal Service’s “ability to adjust” to lower volumes.  In the brief, the Postal Service argues that the Commission has taken positions on this issue that are “illogical,” “absurd,” “hopelessly inconsistent,” “self-contradictory,” and ultimately “arbitrary and capricious” — the legal grounds for remand.  Source:  Save the Post Office

Online Surge Raises Questions About Delivery NetworkA 20 percent surge in online holiday shopping – much of it just days before Christmas – brought the retailing and shipping industries closer to a tipping point many experts think is inevitable.  When the dust settled, UPS hit 97.7 percent for on-time delivery performance, compared to 96.2 percent at FedEx, according to ShipMatrix, a shipping software company that tracks the industry.  FedEx, UPS and the U.S. Postal Service delivered more than 60 million packages on Christmas Eve — 70 percent more than an average day.  But the massive numbers involved, coupled with complaining via social media, increasingly amplifies delays.  Even if on-time performance were 99 percent, 600,000 packages would be delivered late, the firm said.  Source:  Albany Herald

Report Predicts Major USPS DownsizingHere we go again: Yet another government study has spurred news stories about how the U.S. Postal Service is on the verge of massive downsizing.  “The next decade isn’t expected to be kind to postal worker employment,” stated U.S. News & World Report recently, based on a new Bureau of Labor Statistics study.  The postal workforce “is expected to contract by 165,000” from 2014 to 2024.  Reports like that don’t help the Postal Service’s efforts to recruit new employees.  But it looks as if the report is based on old data and outdated assumptions.  Source: Dead Tree Edition

Watching the USPS Sorting System is Mesmerizing – Have you ever wondered how the USPS manages to deliver millions of letters and packages?  Click here to get an inside look into its massive, complex sorting system.  Source:  Alltop

Mr. Magazine Takes Issue with MediaFinder Report When it comes to MediaFinder’s number of new magazine launches the numbers reported are dead wrong.  Media reporters who publish the numbers based on the MediaFinder numbers are also dead wrong.  Both MediaFinder and the reporters who promote their numbers are doing nothing but a disfavor to truth first and the media industry second.  Mr. Magazine has collected and recorded 236 new magazines this past year compared to 232 from the previous year.  MediaFinder numbers says 96 (some reported 113) titles were launched compared to 148 (some reported 190) in 2014.  Source:  Mr. Magazine

Jim Cochrane Named USPS Chief Marketing and Sales OfficerPMG Megan J. Brennan appointedJames P. Cochrane chief marketing and sales officer.  Cochrane, who has acted in the position since May, oversees the marketing, development and management of all domestic and international products. He also manages the Pricing, Global Business, Sales and Stamp Services organizations.  Cochrane has served USPS for more than 40 years.  Source:  USPS

2016 USPS Promotions Still confused with the announced 2016 USPS promotions and incentives programs.  Click here for a quick Graphic Communications printable summary of each promotion and the basic requirements to qualify.  Full details of each program can be viewed on the RIBBS website.

FY 2015 USPS Annual Compliance ReportThe Postal Service has filed an Annual Compliance Reporton the costs, revenues, rates, and quality of service associated with its products in fiscal year 2015.  Within 90 days, the Commission must evaluate that information and issue its determination as to whether rates were in compliance with title 39, chapter 36, and whether service standards in effect were met.  To assist in this, the Commission seeks public comments on the Postal Service’s Annual Compliance Report.  Comments are due: February 2, 2016.  Click here to view the notice.

OIG Reports on eMIR The eMIR (Electronic Mail Improvement Reporting) is a program used by USPS employees to report business mail quality issues and recurring problems.  The report found the USPS must evaluate the use of eMIR to recover costs of improperly prepared mail.  Source:  Office of Inspector General – United States Postal Service