The Postal Service is ready to deliver for customers this holiday season, Postmaster General Louis DeJoy told the public radio program “Marketplace” this week.
“We started early this year with our planning and we’ve expanded capacity in people, facilities, automation and transportation,” DeJoy said. “So tell all your listeners to send us their packages. We’re going to deliver them.”
The 23-minute interview, which aired Nov. 17 and can be streamed at Marketplace.org, also addressed several other topics, including the Delivering for America plan.
DeJoy said the plan attempts to clarify service standards while fulfilling the organization’s mandate to provide universal service.
“We think that we can create an integrated mail-and-packaging network that delivers to [the country’s] 161 million addresses, six days a week, at affordable prices and cover our costs. That’s our goal,” he said.
The plan offers a path forward for the Postal Service after years of struggle, DeJoy added.
“We have lots of different administrative viewpoints and political viewpoints and industry viewpoints on what it is we should and should not do,” he said. “It’s been going on a long time now, which is why nothing has been done.… We haven’t met our service standard in the last 10 years and we spent significant amounts of money chasing diminishing mail volumes around the country, delivering to addresses expanding by a million a year. That’s a recipe for disaster.”
The interview concluded with host David Brancaccio telling DeJoy about going into a New Jersey Post Office where a self-service kiosk was on the fritz and where there was a note at the retail associate’s window saying the office could not accept cash.
“You’re very candid … about the infrastructure challenges of the Post Office,” Brancaccio said.
“We have 31,000 retail centers, we have 20,000 delivery units and we have no money. So that is a big, big part of the problem,” DeJoy responded. “Our network requires significant, significant investment…. We’re out to try and fix that.”
“You’re optimistic, somehow,” Brancaccio said.
“Candid and optimistic is the definition of me,” DeJoy replied.