The U.S. Postal System probably will default on about $5 billion owed to the Treasury as soon as this week. There are actually two payments, one of $5.5 billion due now and another in September for $5.6 billion. Each is earmarked for benefits for postal employees who will retire in the future. An analysis by the federal government claims the USPS loses $25 million a day. There may be no solution to how retiring postal workers gain access to future benefits.
Congress is not required to make the pensions whole. The USPS is required to do so, but that does not matter much if the red ink continues. The post office has not gotten permission to lay off tens of thousands of workers to balance its books. While it may seem impossible, the agency could solve its employment and pension problem, perhaps, by turning the issues over to a bankruptcy judge.
Douglas A. McIntyre