GLEN ROSE - It's quite apparent now that forever does not always mean forever after the US Postal Service has reduced the value of first-class stamps by two cents - from 49 to 47 cents.
This marks the first time in 97 years that stamps have dropped in price, a USPS press release states, although the drop in July 1919 was from three cents to two.
The drop officially began April 10 as part of a prearranged deal in 2013 with the US Congress to hike the price of first-class stamps by three cents. The two year up-charge helped to raise approximately $4.6 billion in revenue for the well documented struggling USPS.
According the USPS press release, the $4.6 billion recovered after the Great Recession was $2.4 billion less than it lost in 2009 alone.
“Given our precarious financial condition and ongoing business needs, the price reduction required by the PRC exacerbates our losses,” USPS Postmaster General and CEO Megan J. Brennan said. “This unfortunate decision heightens the importance of the review of our ratemaking system which our regulator is required to conduct later this year.”
As for the 'forever' stamps, Peter Elias, non-voting director of the Mid-Cities Stamp Club that encompasses Arlington, Irving, Granbury and surrounding communities, said to hold off on using those pre-April 10 Forever stamps.
"This means that Forever stamps that cost 49 cents on or before Sunday, April 10 will now cost, and be worth, 47 cents staring April 10," said Elias in the club's 'Stamping Around' newsletter. "My suggestion is to not buy any Forever stamps until April 10."
"But this isn't just First Class rates that will decrease," Elias continued, "so will practically all other rates and service fees with the exception of Priority Mail and Priority Mail Express - which are not covered by this mandate."
According to the USPS, it is still in the process of fighting the decrease.