Tester questions Postmaster General’s salary amid post office closures

Senator says official’s compensation ‘not transparent’

(U.S. SENATE) – U.S. Senator Jon Tester is demanding to know why the head of the U.S. Postal Service made $800,000 in total compensation while eliminating local Montana positions as the organization is dealing with a multibillion-dollar shortfall.

Tester, during a Senate hearing on the nominations of Mark Acton and Robert Taub to the Postal Regulatory Commission, said that the salaries of top executives should be at the top of the list when cutting costs.

“Quite frankly, when times are tough, when you start cinching your belt down, that ought to be the first place we’re looking, not the last place,” Tester said.

Tester, a member of the Senate Committee that oversees the Postal Service, added that this week’s decision to consider the closure of 85 rural post offices in Montana would “raise heck in Rural America.”

Tester told Acton that the Postal Regulatory Commission must play a big role in rural America with its recommendations to the Postal Service.

“I also understand you guys give recommendations, and I appreciate that,” Tester said. “And I think they ought to be listened to a heck of a lot more than they’ve been listened to, quite honestly.  You guys have important jobs–an important connection–and quite frankly, from my constituency’s base, you guys are a big deal.  Because you can make a difference.”

The Postal Regulatory Commission is an independent agency that has oversight over the Postal Service.  

Tester recently wrote a letter to the Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe calling on the U.S. Postal Service to keep mail service available in rural communities.

Tester’s letter to Donahoe can be read HERE.

Video from Tester’s hearing can be found HERE.