Postal reform commission releases preliminary recommendations

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Washington, D.C.--The President's Commission on the U.S. Postal Service on Wednesday received preliminary recommendations from two of its four subcommittees on postal reform.

The recommendations include replacing the five-member Postal Rate Commission with a Postal Regulatory Board, which comprises three people appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate, with broader flexibility in rate-setting. The American Business Media issued a statement praising the proposal, as well as price control recommendations.

Another key recommendation is that the current board of governors be changed to a corporate-style board of directors to help mirror "best practices of similarly sized private sector corporations."

The Direct Marketing Association and Magazine Publishers of America were more reticent than the ABM in their initial assessments of the recommendations.

Louis Mastria, the DMA's director of public and international affairs, cautioned that the recommendations were preliminary and the contents of the final document would not be known until July 31, when the commission is to submit a final report to President Bush. "The best thing they said for [direct marketers] is they are trying to jump-start postal reform legislation in Congress," he said.

The MPA said that "detailed analysis must await the issuance of the commission's complete report."

--Carol Krol

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