By BRENT MARTIN
St. Joseph Post
ST. JOSEPH, Mo. — Northern Missouri Congressman Sam Graves wants to head off an increase in postal rates.
Graves, a Republican, co-sponsors legislation that would direct the Postal Regulatory Commission to rethink the authority it gave the United States Postal Service to raise rates.
“Americans are paying more for everything,” Graves tells KFEQ/St. Joseph Post. “The last thing we need is higher postage rates, particularly when the U.S. Postal Service; they actually posted a $60 billion profit last quarter.”
Graves says the Postal Service has become profitable since Congress lifted the requirement that it pre-fund retirement benefits.
The Postal Regulatory Commission recently removed the requirement that the Postal Service only raise rates to adjust to inflation.
Graves signed on to legislation, entitled Ensuring Accurate Postal Rates Act, which would repeal the move of the Postal Regulatory Commission to allow the Postal Service to raise rates higher than the rate of inflation.
“I think the Postal Service is just taking advantage of this opportunity and they’re going in with these huge rate hikes to generate capital,” Graves says. “It’s not needed at this point. They need to get their act cleaned up and that’s what this bill is trying to do.”
Graves contends the Postal Service has taken advantage of the change to raise rates in an effort to generate capital. Graves says the legislation goes beyond just sending the Postal Service a message.
“Yes, it does,” Graves says. “It forces them to rethink this postal hike that they are doing. We’ll take that authority back away from them if we have to, but this is going to force them to go back to the table and rethink that postal hike.”
The original sponsor of the legislation is Virginia Congressman Gerald Connolly.
Graves so-sponsors the legislation along with fellow Republican Jake LaTurner of Kansas as well as Democrat Emanuel Cleaver of Kansas City.