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New Post Office Reform Bill Protects Alaska Priorities

Includes Key Provisions Championed by Senator Begich

**TV and Radio Comments Available**

Sen. Begich today released the following statement after a bipartisan bill to reform the United States Postal Service was introduced in the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee:

"The importance of Alaska's post offices can't be understated and I'm glad to see post office reform legislation that addresses the USPS' financial concerns while respecting Alaska's needs.

"This legislation protects bypass mail because it is a critical part of life in rural Alaska and helps communities receive the same universal service the rest of the country gets. I will continue to work with the USPS and my Senate colleagues to protect and improve delivery services in Alaska's urban and rural areas."

Bypass mail is a program that allows mail delivery in remote parts of Alaska. Because of this remote delivery, Alaska families also benefit from more affordable transportation of people and goods.

"Also, I'm pleased the legislation includes the ability for the USPS to expand their services to non-postal goods and update their business model, something I've advocated for on a regular basis."

Sen. Begich's Comments on this new legislation are available for TV and Radio:

Video: Download an .mp4 of Sen. Begich's comments here or on YouTube.

YouTube comments will be pulled in 48 hours. Please do not embed them.

Audio: Download an .mp3 of Sen. Begich's comments here.

The USPS reform legislation introduced today included several of Sen. Begich's key priorities: protecting bypass mail, prohibiting the elimination of Saturday service unless specific conditions are met by the USPS, and allowing the USPS to expand service to non-postal goods.

In addition, As the USPS continues its nationwide review of postal facilities for closure only 5 remain under review for Alaska, down from 36 this summer.  Senator Begich will continue to advocate for service in Alaska and has fought for each one of these community post offices.

In an effort to protect Alaska's priorities, Sen. Begich has kept pressure on the USPS:

Two calls with Postmaster General Donahoe;

Two Senate hearings regarding postal reform;

Three letters to the USPS: 6/3/2011 | 8/1/2011 | 10/27/2011.

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