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Filling Postal Service Vacancies Would Ease ‘Crisis,’ Md. Lawmakers Tell Biden

U.S. Postal Service Postmaster General Louis DeJoy testifies during a hearing before the House Oversight and Reform Committee on August 24, 2020 on Capitol Hill. Photo by Tom Williams-Pool/Getty Images.

President Biden could help reverse the harm done by Postmaster General Louis DeJoy — and hasten his exit — by filling the vacant seats on the U.S. Postal Service’s Board of Governors, members of Congress said in a letter this week.

The letter, sent to Biden on Tuesday, was signed by 80 members of the U.S. House, including Reps. Dutch Ruppersberger and John P. Sarbanes (both D-Md.).

Their letter comes as Americans endure a spike in delayed mail.

Critics blame DeJoy, a Trump appointee who took the helm of the agency last summer. His initiatives — including a ban on overtime and extra trips to deliver mail, and the removal of high-speed sorting machines — has led to investigations by congressional committees and the USPS inspector general.

The changes were reversed last fall in the face of national uproar.

In their letter, the lawmakers label DeJoy a “Republican Party mega-donor… who had no experience working for the Postal Service prior to his appointment.” They said his actions have “rapidly transformed the Postal Service to the detriment of Americans.”

“Critically, the on-time delivery of flat mail has plunged drastically; veterans, who rely almost exclusively on the Postal Service to receive their medications through the VA, have faced life-threatening delays in receiving those parcels; and the public perception pertaining to the integrity of the 2020 general election was threatened by the impact of these delays on the timely delivery of mail-in ballots,” the officials wrote.

The USPS Board of Governors serves as the agency’s board of directors.

Nine of the board’s 11 seats are appointed by the president and there are three vacancies.

Filling the vacancies could pave the way for DeJoy’s ouster, the lawmakers suggest.

“There is a plethora of evidence that Postmaster General DeJoy is not equipped to meet the rigors of these challenges,” they told the president.

“Filling the vacant seats on the Postal Service’s Board of Governors with strong, passionate advocates for the institution will allow it to function in a nonpartisan manner, and will allow the Board to seriously consider whether the current Postmaster General is suitable to continue in his role.”

Late last week, House lawmakers invited DeJoy, Board of Governors Chairman Ron Bloom, Postal Service Inspector General Tammy L. Whitcomb and American Postal Workers Union President Mark Dimondstein to a hearing on legislative reforms for the Postal Service set for next Wednesday.

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Filling Postal Service Vacancies Would Ease ‘Crisis,’ Md. Lawmakers Tell Biden