CCNA ACHIEVES ‘PARTIAL VICTORY’ IN CANADA POST RATE BATTLE

The Canadian Community Newspapers Association (CCNA) has achieved a 'partial victory' in its ongoing battle against Canada Post Unaddressed Admail rate increases.

A recent announcement by Canada Post said Unaddressed Admail prices would increase by an overall average of two per cent, including a weighted average increase of 3.1 per cent to non-contract prices and 2.9 per cent to contract prices.

"We have achieved a partial victory," said CCNA Executive Director Serge Lavoie. "Under previous rules, any newspaper weighing more than 100 grams lost access to the contract rates and did not have any of that particular paper added to its contract volumes.

"Under the new rules, Canada Post has created a contract pricing for items over 100 grams, which allows newspapers to hang onto their volume contracts and get credit for all of their volume, regardless of whether it's over or under 100 grams," he said.

But Lavoie said that the new contract pricing only applies to newspapers mailed where there is not letter carrier service. In those areas where there is letter carrier service, there is still a weight restriction of 113 grams. Anything over that number will not be delivered.

CCNA has been lobbying to have restrictions removed and it appears the association was somewhat successful in getting the weight restrictions removed on the non-letter-carrier deliver service, but less successful on the letter-carrier service.

"We are disappointed that we were unable to convince Canada Post to change both weight restrictions," said Lavoie. "It is important to note that the 113 gram weight restriction for letter-carrier deliver is something imposed on Canada Post under collective bargaining with their letter carriers.

"While community newspapers have a weight restriction of 113 grams, magazines and catalogues have a restriction of 200 grams. We would have liked to have seen the same restrictions apply to community newspapers," he said.

CCNA will continue to lobby on this issue. Full details of the price and service changes are available at Canada Post's web site at www.canadapost.ca .