The term “exigency” or (“exigent”) is shorthand for the statutory provision that allows the Postal Service to increase prices higher than would otherwise be allowed under the CPI-based cap prescribed in the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act, the 2006 portal reform law. The law states that “rates may be adjusted on an expedited basis due to either extraordinary or exceptional circumstances.”
The mailing industry continues to await word whether the Postal Service will invoke “exigency” to seek an above-CPI rate increase. The Postal Service Governors recently met at a regularly scheduled board meeting. As part of the agenda, the Governors considered pricing issues, including the possibility of filing for price adjustments. The Governors continue to listen to stakeholders and have postponed final pricing decisions until the next scheduled Board of Governors (BOG) meeting on Sept. 24 – 25, 2013.
My guess is that, shortly after the Sept 24-25 BOG meeting, we will learn of an exigency filing. Furthermore, I suspect that the exigent increase will be added to and implemented with the typical annual CPI rate increase that occurs each year near the end of January. This year the CPI will be approximately 2%. I suspect that the exigent increase will be about double what the CPI cap will allow; i.e. exigency will likely result in an additional 4 % increase. If I’m right, that would mean that next year’s total postage rate increase will be approximately 6%. I hope I’m wrong.
As always, we’ll let you know when we learn more.