SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — Rep. Jackie Speier, D-San Francisco/San Mateo, introduced a bill Wednesday evening to lift a ban on shipping alcohol through the U.S. Postal Service.
Speier’s office said the bill would end a Prohibition-era ban.
“Prohibition is history, and this ban should be too,” Speier said in a statement. “It’s ridiculous that we’re allowing UPS, FedEx and other companies to ship spirits, wine and beer to consumers, while banning the U.S. Postal Service from doing the exact same thing.”
Speier’s office said the ban puts the USPS at a disadvantage competitively.
Her office said an estimate by the Congressional Budget Office shows the bill, USPS Shipping Equity Act or HR 3412, may provide the Postal Service with additional revenue of $50 million each year.
The postal service had a net loss of $1.5 billion in the three months that ended March 31, according to financial statements on the USPS website.
Speier’s office said HR 3412 would allow the USPS to ship alcohol from licensed producers and retailers to consumers 21 years old and older.
The postal service would verify whether a person is 21 as shippers such as UPS and FedEx do, according to her office.
FedEx spokeswoman Bonny Harrison said drivers get a signature from an adult 21 years old or older when the company ships alcohol to homes.
UPS spokesman Dan McMackin said UPS “drivers are taught to ask for a driver’s license for any package with an ‘adult signature required’ on it. All alcohol shipments are supposed to carry those stickers which are to be applied by the shipper.”
Those shippers must have a contract with UPS to ship alcohol, McMackin said.
Postal unions, letter carriers’ associations and the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States are among the groups that have endorsed the bill, according to Speier’s office.
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