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March 24, 2020
On March 23, House Appropriations Committee Chair Nita Lowey (D-NY) and other committee chairs, including House Oversight and Reform Chair Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) introduced H.R. 6379, a bill to make emergency appropriations to stimulate the United States economy due to the coronavirus crisis. The $2.5 trillion bill, includes a number of provisions relating to the USPS.
H.R. 6379 would provide the USPS with $25 billion in emergency funds through September 30, 2022. Second, the bill would also eliminate the USPS' outstanding debt and provide the agency with the authority borrow up to $15 billion from the U.S. Treasury, without annual limitation. Third, the bill would require the USPS to prioitize the delivery of medical products and permits the agency to establish flexible temporary delivery points to protect postal employees and mail recipients. And, finally, H.R. 6379 would authorize the use of "vote-by-mail" in federal elections, by creating a framework and grants for the state administration of vote-by-mail. The vote by mail provision reflects the text of legislation introuced by Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), S. 3529, "the National Disaster and Emergency Ballot Act." NAPS members should note that the NAPS' legislative team was engaged with House committe staff and Senate Leadership staff over the weekend and on Monday in support of efforts to assist the Postal Service as part of the emerging stimulus package.