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HOME --> ACMA Joins with More than 50 Mail Industry Leaders to Urge PRC to Reconsider Dramatic Postal Rate Increases

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ACMA Joins with More than 50 Mail Industry Leaders to Urge PRC to Reconsider Dramatic Postal Rate Increases

Vast majority of mailers, by volume and revenue, come together to discourage misguided postal rate hike proposal

 

WASHINGTON, March 6, 2018 – The American Catalog Mailers Association has joined an unprecedented coalition of more than 50 leading associations, companies, nonprofits, magazines, newspapers and other stakeholders combined forces as the American Mail Alliance to advocate for promoting the long-term health and success of the U.S. Postal Service and the $1.4 trillion mailing industry. Above all else, the coalition’s primary goal is to oppose the radical postal rate increases proposed by the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC), and offer a commonsense approach to setting new postal rates.

The ACMA and the American Mail Alliance, which represents the vast majority of mailers, by volume and revenue, both filed comments with the PRC concerning the fate of a $1.4 trillion industry. The coalition has come together as the PRC takes the next step in its 10-year review of postage pricing. As part of that process, the PRC has proposed a dramatic increase in postage rates by as much as 40 percent over five years.

In a major filing of comments with the PRC, American Mail Alliance members argued that the PRC’s proposal will do lasting harm to the Postal Service and ultimately to the American people, and businesses small, medium and large, including virtually all who rely on catalogs in the mail. Such a dramatic increase in rates will put many mailers out of business.

“The PRC proposal will effectively reverse all the great gains catalogers and other mailers, as well as the USPS itself, have made since the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act (PAEA) went into effect 11 years ago,” said Hamilton Davison, President & Executive Director of the ACMA. “Instead of continuing to keep the Postal Service accountable in its costing and expense structure by way of consumer price index-capped price increases, this proposal opens the flood gates toward potential ruin for all involved as dramatic increases push mail out of the system and the high fixed costs of operating our national post must be borne by remaining mailers.”

The PRC is an independent agency with representatives from both political parties: Robert G. Taub (R), Tony Hammond (R), Mark Acton (R) and Nanci E. Langley (D).

“The PRC must focus its attention on demanding higher productivity levels and improved efficiency at USPS before imposing punitive rate hikes,” said Linda Thomas Brooks, President of the Association of Magazine Media. “Increasing rates will only serve to harm customers, businesses, and the USPS itself. The PRC proposal comes at a time when the Postal Service is fighting to retain business. Therefore, the USPS’s remaining customers should be encouraged to stay with USPS, not to be penalized with higher rates. The PRC has to concentrate on streamlining and modernizing the Postal Service. Throwing mountains of cash at the Postal Service’s problems and hoping that it works is not the solution.”

The PRC is tasked with balancing multiple criteria when establishing rates, but this proposal elevates one criterion – giving the Postal Service more revenue by raising rates – and ignores all other considerations. The American Mail Alliance submitted its joint comments on February 27; the ACMA submitted its own comments on March 1st. ACMA also submitted other joint comments here and here.

“We hope the Postal Regulatory Commission will reconsider its significant intervention via sharply increased rates and conclude it is ill advised in the face of widespread mailer opposition,” the ACMA’s Davison added. “The rate cap mechanism was a central feature in Congress’s 2006 reform of the Postal Service designed to promote efficiency while protecting mailers. Providing further authority to raise rates is not what is needed right now to promote a sustainable postal system.”

To read more about the American Mail Alliance, visit www.AmericanMailAlliance.com
To read more about the American Catalog Mailers Association, visit www.CatalogMailers.org

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Lynn Noble

President & Executive Director

New Member Development & Acquisition; Postal Affairs

Lynn Noble is ACMA’s Vice President, Industry Relations, having joined the ACMA in May 2015, following an extensive direct marketing career in private industry as well as the US Postal Service. He is responsible for leading the membership development efforts for the ACMA through new member acquisitions and providing enhanced member value.

Throughout his career, Lynn has held key marketing & sales positions with several leading direct marketers, as well as several high-level management positions with the US Postal Service.

In 2009, at the request of the ACMA, the US Postal Service initiated a new position of Catalog Manager to lead the Service’s efforts to stabilize and grow the catalog industry. Lynn returned to the USPS to lead those efforts and was instrumental to developing a stronger industry partnership between the Postal Service and the catalog industry. Serving as the product manager for catalogs, Lynn helped to raise the awareness of catalog-specific business challenges within the executive ranks of the USPS. During his tenure, the ACMA and catalog companies enjoyed a collaborative and progressive environment that produced more stabilized rates and inclusion in key USPS promotional opportunities.

Just prior to joining the ACMA Lynn was the USPS’s Manager, Strategic Account Operations, leading a team of senior sales professionals who focused exclusively in the Catalog, Mail Order, and E-commerce arena. In addition to his Postal positions, Lynn previously held key positions with leading direct marketing companies, including Cox Target Media, Market Logic, Catalina Marketing, Freesamples.com, and Advantage Direct.

Paul Miller

Vice President & Deputy Director

Association Matters, Marketing / Communications, Membership Relations

Named Vice President & Deputy Director in January 2010, Miller came to the ACMA following a lengthy career of more than two decades following the catalog/multichannel/e-commerce/retail businesses. Reporting to ACMA president & executive director Hamilton Davison, Miller oversees marketing and communications, membership development, and organizes and oversees ACMA’s National Catalog Forum, while working with Davison on most of ACMA’s postal-related efforts.

Miller started his career as a reporter with Catalog Showroom Business, following a form of retailing that was led by the likes of the Service Merchandise and Best Products retail chains.

After several years of editor/reporter roles with business magazines that followed the toy and gift industries, Miller was named associate editor of Catalog Age magazine (now Multichannel Merchant) in 1986. He rose up the ranks at Catalog Age over the next 18 years to be the magazine’s senior news editor.

Beginning in the late ’80s, Miller became Catalog Age’s postal beat reporter, where he’d follow key postal events and pull out the key catalog mail-related issues for readers. During that time, he attended many Mailers Technical Advisory Committee (MTAC) meetings and National Postal forums.

After leaving Catalog Age in 2004, Miller consulted with several catalogers and multichannel suppliers for a time, he was named news/website editor at Commercial Property News. Less than a year later, he was asked to take the reigns at Catalog Success (now All About ROI) where he served as editor-in- chief from 2006 till the end of 2009.

 

Mike Plunkett

President & Executive Director

Washington, legislative, lobbying matters

ACMA appointed Michael K. Plunkett as its President and Executive Director in January 2024, succeeding founder Hamilton Davison. Mr. Davison moved on to own and run a company. Mr. Plunkett brings years of executive leadership experience having been the President and CEO of the Association for Postal Commerce (PostCom) since 2017.  In the newly-formed dual role, he will continue his current role with PostCom and the two organizations will operate separately.

During his tenure, PostCom has continued to lead the mailing and shipping industry on policy and regulatory matters and to work with Government agency partners to advance issues of importance to members. Mr. Plunkett is also President of the Delivery Technology Advocacy Council, a nonprofit launched in 2020 to concentrate on delivery and logistics technologies.

Prior to PostCom, Mr. Plunkett accumulated more than 25 years Postal experience with the United States Postal Service in numerous executive roles in operations, marketing, product development and pricing.  As a leader within the Postal Service’s management team, Mr. Plunkett developed a well-earned reputation for innovation by leading efforts to develop pricing agreements for domestic services and in the development of the forever stamp and the priority mail flat rate box.

Mr. Plunkett has testified on pricing and policy issues before the Postal Regulatory Commission and Congressional subcommittees.  He has authored and presented papers on postal policies, economics, and operations for National and International conferences.

Mr. Plunkett holds Masters Degrees in Business from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he was a Sloan Fellow. He earned a Bachelor Degrees in Economics and Finance from the Pennsylvania State University.