DeJoy Nets Massive Bonus Amid Mail Delays and Rampant Wage Theft From Carriers

The U.S. The U.S. Postal Service paid its top executives more bonuses and perks in 2013 than at any point in the past decade. This added up to $370622 in additional income for Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, and four of his deputies. Center for Public Integrity review of the agency’s financial disclosures.

DeJoy got a $75,000 performance bonus in fiscal year 2021, plus about $56,000 in other perks, which includes membership in two airline clubs, retirement counseling and financial planning services, according to the Postal Service’s newly released 10-K report. This was in addition to his $305,681 annual salary, which is the highest ever for the top USPS job. DeJoy made about the same as President Joe Biden.

The average annual salary for all employees of the postal service is meanwhile was $51,150 in 2020 — the most recent year surveyed by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The starting salaryAt the beginning of the year, the cost for an assistant city postal carrier was around $38,000

The USPS continues to lose billions each year and mail carriers complain about wage theft at the quasi public agency. This generous executive compensation comes at a time when the USPS continues its losses. A Public Integrity investigation published in August found that hundreds of managers at post offices across the country have been caught illegally changing mail carriers’ time cards to show them working fewer hours than they did, resulting in lost pay.

While many of those cases predated DeJoy’s tenure, managers continue to change time cards to avoid paying overtime to hourly workers, according to dozens of mail carriers and private arbitration documents shared with Public Integrity.

Despite delivering record-breaking numbers of packages to homes, businesses, and individuals since the pandemic started, the Postal Service lost $4.9B in income and had $206B in debt and unfunded liabilities for fiscal year 2021.

“[DeJoy] seems like the last person who should be the recipient of an unprecedented salary increase and bonus,” said Noah Bookbinder, president of the government watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington. Bookbinder pointed to DeJoy’s alleged misconduct. intentionally slowed mail deliveryDuring the 2020 presidential election, millions tried to vote by post. resisted calls to sell stock he owned in a companyIt does business with Postal Service, which could lead to a conflict in interest.

October was the first month that the Postal Service started. slowing delivery of letters, bills and other first-class mail from three to five days in large swaths of the country — part of DeJoy’s plan to save the agency money. Because federal law requires the Postal Service (the Postal Service) to prepay retired pensions and healthcare benefits, the agency has been struggling with large amounts of debt for a long time.

The three major labor unions representing postal workers — the National Association of Letter Carriers, the National Rural Letter Carriers Association and the American Postal Workers Union — did not respond to Public Integrity’s request for comment on the 2021 bonuses.

The Postal Service’s board of governors, which hired DeJoy, sets his salary and determines his annual performance award, which is directly tied to meeting goals related to finances, employee performance and customer service, according to the report. The financial disclosure did not provide details about what those goals were for 2021, but DeJoy’s bonus was more than double the $30,650 targeted for the year.

This was a strange statement by the agency in its filing.

“Given our financial condition, any individual award is unlikely to exceed the target amount,” the disclosure stated.

The Postal Service’s board of governors, which plays a similar role as a corporate board of directors, did not explain why DeJoy received a higher-than-expected award this year. John Barger (a member of the board that heads its compensation committee) did not respond. Public Integrity.

David Partenheimer, a spokesperson for USPS, said the executive bonuses reflect agency-wide improvements in line with DeJoy’s Delivering for America plan.

“In just the last fiscal year alone, the Postal Service saw a 5.3% increase in revenue, a smaller net loss and the strongest service performance for all mail categories since the previous year,” Partenheimer wrote in a statement shared with Public Integrity.

Partenheimer said that executive bonuses in 2021 were not the highest in 10 years, though he did not provide evidence to support his claim — which contradicts the numbers in the agency’s publicly reported financial disclosures.

Unlike federal cabinet officials, whose pay was capped at $221,400 this year, the board of governors at USPS can set the postmaster general’s salary up to 20% higher than the vice president’s. This would amount to $306,960 in 2021, which is roughly the salary of DeJoy. The board also has wide discretion when it comes rewarding the postmaster general by perks and performance bonuses.

That’s because Congress passed a law in 2006 — the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act — that raised the salary cap for USPS executives to provide them with more-generous pay. Because the Postal Service operates as a business, it needed to align executive pay with the private sectors to attract top talent.

And many more large private-sector companiesThe Postal Service has been cited repeatedly by the U.S. Department of LaborIt illegally underpaid its workers with little consequence. According to Labor Department data obtained by Freedom of Information Act request, the Postal Service received 1,150 citations from the federal government for illegally underpaying its employees and letter carriers between 2005 and 2020.

Partenheimer, the spokesperson for the USPS, stated that the agency does NOT condone supervisors making inappropriate changes to employee time cards and that it takes such allegations seriously. “This position is messaged to the postal workforce directly from postal leaders,” he wrote in a statement.

Mail carriers who are having difficulty getting paid for their work have claimed that it has affected their mental health as well as their relationships with their colleagues. Some have had to dip into retirement savings.

“We are depending on that money,” Nancy Campos, a mail carrier in Midland, Texas, told Public Integrityearlier in the year. “When you get shorted, it’s the most horrible feeling.”