The Alaska Delegation today vigorously defended Alaska’s bypass mail system against proposed changes that would leave Alaskans with higher costs and less reliable delivery during a hearing of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. U.S. Senator Mark Begich and Representative Don Young testified before the committee and Senator Lisa Murkowski submitted testimony as part of the delegation’s joint efforts to protect bypass mail. During the provocatively titled hearing, “Alaska Bypass Mail Delivery: A Broken System” the Alaska Delegation sent a strong message to the committee: It ain’t broke, so don’t fix it.
“Chairman Issa’s proposed changes would infringe on Alaska’s right to universal mail service and would make the system more expensive and less effective for the Postal Service and Alaskans,” said Begich. “As a member of the U.S. Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs committee, I have already fought hard to convince the Postmaster General to roll back rate increases for Alaskans and protect bypass mail. I am not going to allow some misguided efforts to undo the bypass system. The changes Rep. Issa proposed are unacceptable. Alaskans are open to discussing ways to make the system more efficient, but we will oppose any changes that violate universal service or make the Postal Service worse off. Alaskans should not have to pay more to receive the same service as other Americans.”
“The Committee is dead wrong to pursue changes to bypass mail that will create no new efficiencies, be detrimental to the economy and air carrier market in Alaska, and potentially damage the quality of life to rural residents,” said Congressman Don Young.