Postal Rates Decline

PostalNonprofit organizations should be able to benefit from the first reduction in first-class postal rates in 97 years. The new rates, mandated by the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC), became effective April 10. They reflect the rollback of a 4.3% exigent surcharge granted for the past two years. Organizations that send direct mailings and other mail in large quantities should experience significant savings.

Historically, increases in postal rates were generally limited to the increase in the Consumer Price Index. But in special circumstances, the PRC can grant an exigent surcharge to the United States Postal Service (USPS). After the Great Recession of 2007–2009, the PRC authorized the USPS to impose a 4.3% postal surcharge on customers, but the surcharge was subject to mandatory expiration once the USPS recovered the estimated $4.6 billion it had lost during the economic downturn.

Generally, qualified nonprofit organizations are allowed preferential pricing on Standard Mail and some periodicals. The type of organization and the content of the mail pieces as defined by federal statutes determine eligibility. The rollback in prices may result in further savings for qualified nonprofits. For example, postage on Standard Mail letters falls from $.147 to $.140 and on Standard Mail flats from $.249 to $.237.

Categories of organizations eligible for nonprofit postage:

• Religious

• Educational

• Scientific

• Philanthropic

• Agricultural

• Labor

• Veterans

• Fraternal

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