BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    

                              Senator Isadore Hall, III
                                2015 - 2016  Regular 

          Bill No:           SJR 11           Hearing Date:    6/29/2015
          |Author:    |Leyva                                                |
          |Version:   |5/26/2015    Introduced                              |
          |Urgency:   |                       |Fiscal:      |Yes             |
          |Consultant:|Felipe Lopez                                         |
          |           |                                                     |

          SUBJECT: United States Postal Service

            DIGEST:    This resolution urges the United States Congress to  
          require the United States Postal Service (USPS) to take all  
          appropriate measures to restore service standards in effect as  
          of July 1, 2012, and it further urges congress to oppose any  
          postal reform legislation that does not continue the mandate for  
          6-day delivery service to protect door-to-door delivery as it  
          currently exists. 

          This resolution:

          1)Urges the United States Congress to require the USPS to  
            restore service standards in effect as of July 1, 2012 and  
            place a moratorium on planned shutdowns of mail sorting  
            centers, and further urges the United States Congress to  
            oppose any postal reform legislation that does not continue  
            the mandate for six-day delivery service or does not protect  
            door-to-door delivery as it currently exists.

          2)Urges the Secretary of State to publicly oppose changes in the  
            United States Postal Service that negatively impact the rights  
            of California voters who vote by an absentee ballot. 

          3)Declares that on January 5, 2015, the USPS implemented lower  
            "service standards" to virtually eliminate overnight delivery  
            of first class mail and periodicals, and further delay most  


          SJR 11 (Leyva)                                      Page 2 of ?
            other mail.

          4)Declares that delayed mail negatively impacts businesses,  
            hurts residents, communities, and the economy, and drives  
            customers away, resulting in lower revenue and damaging the  
            financial situation of the USPS.

          5)Declares that robust service standards implemented by the USPS  
            are essential to providing prompt and timely delivery of all  
            mail, including online purchases, local newspapers,  
            newsletters, bill payments, letters, invitations, packages,  
            and medicines.

          6)Declares that planned shutdowns of mail sorting centers would  
            seriously affect hundreds of employees, over 22 percent of  
            whom are United States military veterans, many with  

          7)Declares at least one of these mail sorting facilities,  
            located in Eureka, California, is planning on shifting its  
            mail distribution, including absentee ballots, to Oregon,  
            which contradicts the obligation of the USPS to protect voting  
            by mail throughout California, which is now commonplace and  
            will remain essential to our democracy.

          8)Declares that the USPS has the authority to reinstate  
            overnight delivery standards to hasten mail delivery and  
            prevent shutdowns of mail sorting centers. 


          Purpose of the resolution.  According to the author, "the USPS  
          is seeking ways to cut costs to its operations in disregard to  
          the service it is mandated to provide.  Most of the unfunded  
          costs they are facing are due to actions taken by congress to  
          restructure their future retiree health benefit program.  Due to  
          these financial issues they are moving to close processing  
          plants across the state.  These plant closures would further  
          slow down the already delayed mail delivery provided by the  
          USPS.  Furthermore these closures would seriously impact vote by  
          mail delivery across the state."

          The author further argues that, "the USPS is proposing cuts to  
          Saturday delivery and replacing door to door delivery with  
          cluster boxes for all residential customers.  Providing fewer  
          services and less quality will cause more customers to seek  


          SJR 11 (Leyva)                                      Page 3 of ?
          other options.  Rural Americans, businesses, senior citizens,  
          and veterans will be hurt the most by ending Saturday mail and  
          removing customer's direct home delivery."

          USPS Initiatives. Since 2012, the USPS has instituted several  
          initiatives aimed at reducing expenses in its mail delivery and  
          processing systems as part of a broader effort to address its  
          fiscal challenges and move towards financial viability.  Some of  
          these initiatives include changing its delivery standards to  
          increase the expected number of days that it can take to deliver  
          some types of mail, consolidating mail processing facilities,  
          and realigning its operations to capture potential savings. 
          These initiatives were announced in response to declines in mail  
          volume and revenue in May 2012 as part of a two phase program  
          aimed at consolidating its mail processing operations and  
          network.  In phase one, effective July, 2012, USPS changed its  
          delivery standards, which USPS stated allowed it to  
          significantly reduce the number of mail processing facilities.  

          During phase 2, which began on January 5, 2015, single piece  
          First-Class Mail is no longer subject to a 1-day delivery  
          standard and USPS plans to further reduce the number of mail  
          processing facilities by up to 82 facilities, from 320 to as few  
          as 238.  At the time, USPS stated that after phase two  
          implementation, it projected that 20 percent of First-Class Mail  
          will be delivered in 1 day, 35 percent in 2 days, and 44 percent  
          in 3 days.

          Prior/Related Legislation
          SJR 15 (Hancock, Res. Chapter 122, Statutes of 2013) urged the  
          United States Congress to pass legislation that reflects the  
          value and intent set forth in the Postal Service Protection Act  
          of 2013 in order to ensure the modernization and preservation of  
          the USPS.

          SJR 12 (Hancock, Res. Chapter 37, Statutes of 2013) urged the  
          USPS to rescind its decision to sell the Berkeley, California,  
          Main Post Office.

          FISCAL EFFECT:                 Appropriation:       Fiscal Com.:  
                            Yes          Local:           



          SJR 11 (Leyva)                                      Page 4 of ?
          California State Association of Letter Carriers (Source)
          California American Postal Workers Union
          California Labor Federation
          California Rural Letter Carriers' Association
          National Association of Postal Supervisors


          None received

          ARGUMENTS IN SUPPORT:    The California State Association of  
          Letter Carriers believes this resolution properly addresses the  
          USPS' ongoing move to slow down delivery service while moving  
          forward on their plans to shut down mail sorting centers and  
          also addresses the USPS' current discussions to eliminate both  
          Saturday and door to door delivery for the millions of patrons  
          they are responsible to provide service for.