The News Media Alliance and the National Newspaper Association – representing thousands of local newspapers across the United States – have joined a legal challenge of an order by the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) that would effectively eliminate a Congressionally-mandated limit on postal rate increases for Periodicals and Marketing Mail, which since 2006 has required postal rate increases to remain within a statutory price cap tied to the Consumer Price Index.
Under the new rate-setting system, the U.S. Postal Service will be able to increase the postage assessed to newspapers by roughly 9 percent annually over the next five years. Rate changes of this magnitude would be unsustainable for newspapers and could force small market and community newspapers to close their doors.
David Chavern, President and CEO of the News Media Alliance, said, “The PRC is placing the Postal Service’s balance sheet problems – which Congress can fix – on local newspapers and other mailers at the worst possible time. As many newspapers are the only source of local news about a community, this will undoubtedly increase the number of 'news deserts' across the country.”
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