Policy Documents

Timid Steps toward Postal Reform

Rick Geddes –
July 1, 2004

The time for postal reform in the United States has come. Both Houses of Congress are now considering bills that would thoroughly reform the U.S. Postal Service. The bills are disappointing in light of the extensive reforms carried out in other developed countries, including privatization and complete de-monopolization. They do contain several proposed improvements over the status quo, however. They would enhance the authority of the Postal Service's regulator, they would clearly separate monopolistic from competitive products, and they would limit the Postal Service's delivery monopoly so that private firms might compete as long as they charged no less than six times the prevailing stamp price.