Here's How the US Government Shutdown Will Affect Your Mail

If you were hoping the government shutdown would delay credit card bills, you will be disappointed. The U.S. Postal Service will still be delivering mail on Monday through Saturday, no matter how long the shutdown lasts.

This is because the USPS is an independent agency, and none of its funding comes from tax dollars.

"The Postal Service receives NO tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations," the USPS website reads.

The agency also clarified it is open for business on Twitter.

"USPS operations will not be interrupted due to the Gov't shutdown, & all Post Offices will remain open for business as usual," the statement reads. "Because we are an independent entity that is funded through the sale of our products & services, & not by tax dollars, USPS will not be impacted."

Although USPS is not funded by tax dollars, it is often a political punching bag due in part to its dire financial situation.

Back in March 2017, USA Today reported that the USPS posted a $5.6 billion loss in 2016 and mail volume hit a 29-year low. Last year, the House considered a bipartisan bill to restructure a 2006 law that requires the USPS to pay $5.4 billion to $5.8 billion to retiree health funds. Although a House panel approved the bill, it has not been passed or voted on.

Other cost-saving attempts have been thwarted in recent years. The USPS wanted to close rural post officers in 2011, but the plan was ultimately dropped after customer uproar. In 2016, it considered stopping Saturday letter delivery, but this was also scrapped.

President Trump also weighed in on the USPS' situation on Dec. 29.

"Why is the United States Post Office, which is losing many billions of dollars a year, while charging Amazon and others so little to deliver their packages, making Amazon richer and the Post Office dumber and poorer?" Trump tweeted. "Should be charging MUCH MORE!"


The Constitution gave Congress the power to "establish Post Offices and post Roads," and the Postmaster General was a cabinet-level position until 1971. The President is also supposed to name the nine members of the Board of Governors of the USPS, but these positions are still vacant. Trump named three nominees in October.

Photo credit: Twitter/ USPS