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Lawmaker demands U.S. Postal Service turn over vehicle contract

Carolyn Maloney leads a hearing about coronavirus preparedness and response in Washington

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The chairwoman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee on Friday demanded the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) release a contract it awarded to Oshkosh Corp that could be worth $6 billion to build up to 165,000 next-generation delivery vehicles.

Some Democrats in Congress have been critical that the USPS awarded a multibillion-dollar, 10-year contract to Oshkosh Defense, a unit of Oshkosh Corp, to build a mix of gasoline-powered and electric delivery vehicles instead of choosing Workhorse Group Inc to build an all-electric fleet.

Representative Carolyn Maloney, a Democrat who chairs the committee that oversees the USPS, said “a thorough review is warranted to ensure the award process is free from undue influence and potential interference.”

She demanded USPS release the final contract, all offers submitted, records of negotiations and evaluation factors by March 26.

Postmaster General Louis DeJoy has committed to at least 10% of the fleet being electric vehicles but he said in a letter on Thursday that with government assistance the USPS could commit to making a majority of the fleet electric within 10 years. He added that the USPS needs about $8 billion to electrify the new fleet to the “maximum extent” feasible.

(Reporting by David Shepardson; editing by Jonathan Oatis)

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