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Mr. ROGERS. This is on passenger-type trains?
Mr. JONES. Passenger-type trains.

Mr. ROGERS. Do you pay more to the passenger trains than to freight?

Mr. JONES. We pay on the average 20 percent more for service on a passenger-type train than in a freight-type train.

Mr. ROGERS. What type of mail goes by freight?

Mr. JoNEs. Normally what we call the bulk mail. This would be parcel post, advertising material, and publications.

Mr. Rogers. Does first class go by freight?

Mr. JoNEs. Only in selected merchandise service. Generally, firstclass mail will move by highway, by passenger-type train, or by air.

Mr. ROGERS. What is the range of lateness that we experience generally?

Mr. JONES. The manner in which we determine late running normally is—if a train arrives within 15 minutes of its published schedule we consider it on time.

The records we maintain at the present time show that passengertype mail-carrying trains, during our latest accounting period were 72 percent on time, or 28 percent failed to operate within 15 minutes of scheduled arrival.

In the freight-type trains, the range is from about 80 percent up, and it does vary. For example, on a train like the Santa Fe Super Chief, operating between Chicago and Los Angeles, the performance is outstanding

I checked 22 of its most recent round trips, and they were late two trips out of 44. That was 44 one-way trips. These were both because of derailments. On the other trips they were ahead of schedule.

On the Southern Railroad the performance is very good On others it is not. Recent operations on the Erie Lackawanna and the Baltimore and Ohio have been poor and we are in the process of taking severe corrective action in both cases.

Mr. ROGERS. Perhaps this is part of the trouble with the late delivery of mail. We have difficulties in getting mails delivered. In some cases

Mr. Jones. In some cases irregularities in transportation do contribute to this.

Mr. ROGERS. I think it would be interesting for the committee to have, if you could supply it, a rundown in the lateness, and in the freight trains, the lateness and what lines, and if any action has been taken within the last 2 years to change the contract.

Mr. JONES. Yes, sir. Mr. Rogers. Thank you. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Mr. LISHMAN. Mr. Chairman, I have no further questions, but I wish we could give accolades equally to Mr. Jones and Dr. Aitchison. And adding to what you said I would like to point out that in 1970 Dr. Aitchison did receive an award from the National Civil Service League, the career service award, which I think speaks very highly of her.

Mr. Rogers. Mr. Chairman, I might also ask that the information to be furnished be made part of the record at this point.

Mr. Moss. Without objection, the information will be made part of the record.

(See Appendix 0, p. 608.)

Mr. Moss. On behalf of one of my colleagues who is unable to be with us this afternoon, I am going to ask for comment after making a statement here.

I am sure that you are aware that there are a number of bills before Congress at the present time calling for financial assistance from the Government to aid money-losing passenger trains.

One proposal calls for setting up public corporations which will take over the operation of designated essential passenger trains. Your tes. timony today indicates that there has been a tremendous increase in the amount of mail revenues paid to railroads for freight services, as well as a decrease in the amount of revenue paid by the Post Office Department for the haulage of mail on passenger trains.

The proposed bill that I have in mind calls for an initial outlay by the Government of $40 million plus other guarantees of loans and I think recently we have had a request for some $750 million of loan guarantee authorization, but other guarantees of loans which the public corporations would be authorized to make.

According to the exhibit submitted by you, Dr. Aitchison, exhibit 1, it reflects that during fiscal year 1969 Post Office Department expended a revenue of over $71.5 million for the haulage of mail by freight trains.

This figure has increased during the current fiscal year through the end of May 1970 to over $74 million.

It would seem to me that any Government subsidy of passenger operations should consider the possibility of requiring the Post Office Department to utilize any passenger train which might be taken orer by the proposed public corporations in haulage of mail

. This could create the unique situation wherein the mail revenues received would, in effect, totally fund such public corporation operations of passenger trains.

I wonder if I could have vour comments on this statement.
Dr. AITCHISON. I yield to Mr. Jones.
Mr. Voss. Mr. Jones, you are recognized.

Mr. JONES. Mr. Chairman, the Post Office Department feels basically that it must purchase transportation, whether from a railroad, an airline or a trucker, in a manner that will meet reasonable standards which the Department sets to effect good and dependable delivery of the mail.

If a passenger train corporation were established, the Department would basically, from a traffic management standpoint, want to look on these trains as it does any available mode or unit of transportation.

If a train operated on a schedule that was suitable for the movement of mail, if the rates that the Post Office were to pay for utilization of this train were considered fair, reasonable, and competitive, and if the train gave us the advantages of good materials handling by the use of containerization where feasible and practical certainly we would want to support this request.

On the other hand, passenger traffic is generally opposed to mail in its movements, and many passenger trains might well operate at times of day or on schedules that would be totally unsuited to the effective movement of mail.

In that case the Department would respectfully request that it not be urged to use that type of schedule.

Mr. Moss. Do you use the Metroliner?

Mr. Jones. At the present time, sir, we are not using the Metroliner for the movement of mail. There are two basic reasons at this time.

The schedules of the present Metroliners would not advance the mail in any way over the other trains available for the movement of mail, and in many cases are not placed at the time of evening or night that would provide the best mail transportation along the corridor between Washington and New York.

We have considered the feasibility of using small roll on-roll off types of containers for a limited number of high priority mail moves on these trains, but have not found any effective way of doing this at this time.

Initially, the Department of Transportation did indicate somewhat of a reluctance to move mail on the test trains, and we agreed, because of the schedule.

However we have explored the feasibility of using these types of high-speed trains in the corridor with representatives of United Aircraft, who are designing the turbo train for the northern segment between Boston and New York, and they were exploring the practicability of an interchangeable body, where you could have a passenger body during the day and a container body in the evening.

Mr. Moss. Thank you, sir.

Mr. ROGERS. I am not sure whether you have answered this or not. Did I understand that the Post Office does protest a discontinuance of rail service if they feel it would be harmful to your delivery of mail?

Mr. Jones. It has been the policy of the Department to take no active position in a train discontinuance petition. The only statement that à Post Office Department official would make for the record on an application for train discontinuance is that the Department would provide the best possible replacement service.

We have not actively opposed discontinuance.
Mr. ROGERS. Shouldn't the Department in some instances oppose it?

Mr. Jones. Thus far, sir, we have not found adequate grounds to do it, because we have been able to provide adequate replacement service.

Mr. ROGERS. At the same cost or less ?
Mr. Jones. Generally at the same or less cost, yes.

Mr. ROGERS. In the instances where you had to go to higher costare there any!

Mr. JONES. I am not aware of any.
Mr. ROGERS. Would you let us know if that is so for the record ?

Mr. Jones. I will if there are any, but I am speaking from memory, and I am not aware of any.

Mr. ROGERS. I would think there might be some places where you would have to use airline services, wouldn't you?

Mr. Jones. In some cases we do use air transportation to replace the movement of letter mail. In that case, if we isolate solely the physical movement of the mail as apart from the total system involved in handling the mail when we move it by air as opposed to moving it by rail, the physical movement might cost more per unit, but the total cost to the Government for the complete service from post office to post office, or mailer to addressee, would be less.

Mr. ROGERS. I find this difficult to follow. If this increment of transportation is higher in one instance, it still can be less overall ?

Mr. Jones. This generally involves a change from railway post of fice cars to air transportation-which changes the movement of letter mail via a railway postal car for sortation to a movement of mail involving sortation in an automated or mechanized post office and air transportation between those points.

We do have a relatively high cost service in our railway post office units, and when we replace these, we normally replace them either by high speed highway or air transport, and we remove the physical sortation of the mail from the railway post office and place it into one of our post office structures. The total service cost from the time a letter enters the post office to the time it is sent from the post office to the addressee is less.

The processing cost decreases. The transportation cost increases. The net overall result is generally a decrease in the total cost of the service.

Mr. ROGERS. I wonder about where you have—I know one railroad with as much as 20 million. I wonder why this would not be a major consideration in a discontinuance where passenger service would be affected?

In other words, to consider public convenience as well, should the post office also consider public convenience ?

Mr. Jones. We have felt very strongly, sir, that the post office should concern itself with the actual transportation of the mail, and that questions of public policy involving the provision of a public transportation network should be the responsibility of another agency.

We felt this rather strongly sometime ago in the movement of mail by air, where formerly the Post Office Department paid a subsidy in addition to the physical transportation cost, and this was changed so that the Civil Aeronautics Board took care of the subsidy and the Post Office Department paid a fair and reasonable rate for the physical movement of the mail.

Mr. Rogers. I think this is a rather limited interest, and certainly as one of the agencies of the Federal Government, the Federal Government is interested in providing service, and obviously rather vitally interested, since the President now is coming forth with a proposal, I understand, that he even wants us to set up a fund to bail railroads out.

Now to have one department of Government which is supplying funds, $20 million as I see by one figure here, and often $7 million and $10 million, it seems to me it would have to be a rather major consideration, and particularly when we are concerned with the decrease in passenger service and convenience to the public.

Îhis would be a rather major consideration for the post office, it would seem, where it can influence some service to the public,

Mr. Jones. Basically, as I indicated I think in response to the question from Mr. Moss, if the passenger train does provide a schedule which can be used for the advancement of mail and the rates are fair and reasonable and we can use proper materials handling procedures, we would certainly carefully consider that.

However, we do not feel that we can underwrite another service at the expense of the Post Office Department.

Mr. Rogers. I think you have missed what I am saying. I am saying where you already have a service and they want to take off the line, you make no protest during the proceedings. You simply say, we will find a truck, or go to the airlines.

Mr. Jones. Sir, that is correct.

Mr. Rogers. I think that is a very narrow viewpoint for a department of Government, when you could influence, perhaps, that passenger service to remain in service.

Do you see what I mean?

Mr. Jones. I follow, sir; I don't think I would be competent to comment beyond what I have said on that. I appreciate your statement.

Mr. Moss. Would the gentleman yield ?
Mr. Rogers. Yes, certainly.

Mr. Moss. Let's look at the transportation system we have available for handling the maiis. Is it a better one today than it was 20 years a go?

Mr. Jones. Overall, sir, I would say yes.
Mr. Moss. You would say yes, it is?

Mr. Jones. I would say it is more flexible and more suited to changing conditions and requirements.

Mr. Moss. That is common carrier?

Mr. Jones. That is common carrier where we are concerned with air and rail. Generally in the procurement of highway transportation we have many private carriers as well as common carriers.

Mr. Moss. What problems do you have in my State of California where discontinuances of railroad services up and down the valleys, actually stretching all the way the length of the State, approximately 1,100 miles, where there is not satisfactory air transportation as a substitute, certainly not by any scheduled carrier.

I have learned that through rather bitter experience.

What is the substitute that makes that system better than it was 20 years ago when I could travel readily up and down the State on well scheduled railroad facilities?

Mr. Jones. At the present time the normal substitute would be a highway service to back up the air, and if there were reasonable expectations that the aircraft would depart in time to arrive in the northern end of the State sooner than surface transportation we would hold the traffic

Mr. Moss. You are well aware of the peculiarities of the valleys in California, particularly from November through February, well, when air transportation is extremely unreliable, sometimes stretching into several days at a time.

So you to have alternate facilities. You have those under contract, standby!

What do you do to move the mails in those instances ?

Mr. Jones. If we had a protracted period where the air transportation did not operate, we would use either truck or bus service.

Mr. Moss. But you do have those each year.

Mír. Jones. In that case, we do—our provisions for transportation do have considerable flexibility so that we can provide additional or extra service on demand.

Mr. Moss. The highway transportation is provided for the mails just in those instances. Is that contract with the railroads, normally, as operators of the highway post office?

Mr. Jones. It would depend on who operated the highway service.

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