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H.R. 8015 (116th): Delivering for America Act

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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Aug 22, 2020.

Delivering for America Act

This bill prohibits the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) from making changes to operations or levels of service from those that were in effect on January 1, 2020, establishes requirements for the processing of election mail, and provides additional funding for the Postal Service Fund.

(Sec. 2) Specifically, the USPS may not, during the period beginning on enactment of this bill and ending on the last day of the COVID-19 (i.e., coronavirus disease 2019) public health emergency or January 31, 2021, whichever is later, implement or approve any change to the operations or the level of service that would reduce service performance or impede prompt, reliable, and efficient services. Such changes include the following:

changes in the nature of services that will generally affect service on a nationwide basis; revisions of service standards; closures or consolidations of post offices or facilities or reduction of hours; prohibitions or restrictions on the use of overtime or payment of overtime pay to USPS officers or employees; changes that would prevent the USPS from meeting its service standards or that would reduce measurements of performance concerning those standards; changes that would have the effect of delaying, deferring, or curtailing mail, allowing non-delivery to a delivery route, or increasing the volume of undelivered mail; treating election mail as any class of mail other than first-class mail, regardless of whether this requires overtime pay; any removal or stoppage of mail sorting machines, other than for routine maintenance; removing or eliminating any mail collection box available to the public; enacting any rule, policy, or standard the purpose or effect of which would delay delivery of mail to or from a government entity; and instituting any hiring freeze. The USPS shall reverse any initiative or action that is causing delay in processing or delivery or non-delivery of mail.

With regard to election mail specifically, the bill (1) establishes USPS policy to postmark, with imprinted indicia of the date of receipt, all processed election mail; and (2) directs the USPS to ensure that election mail is processed and cleared from any postal facility on the same day it is received. The term election mail means voter registration materials, absentee and other mail-in applications and ballots, and other materials mailed by state or local election officials to individuals registered to vote in the election.

(Sec. 3) The bill appropriates $25 billion as an additional payment to the Postal Service Fund, of which $15 million shall be transferred to the USPS Office of Inspector General.