According to a 2001 audit from the inspector general overseeing the Postal Service, the agency may have overpaid a then-Louis DeJoy-run company by about $53 million, at least according to market standards at the time. DeJoy, of course, is the new Postmaster General, but he has been mired in controversy since the beginning of his short tenure thanks to developments like his policy and operations changes that have slowed down mail service across the country.
In 2001, DeJoy was CEO of a company called New Breed Logistics, which — for some reason — “was awarded more than $300 million in Postal Service mail equipment transport contracts that could have come in at a much lower price had they been shopped competitively to a range of vendors,” NBC reports. The total that the Postal Service could have saved via shopping the contracts around was estimated at as much as $53 million, according to NBC. The contracts were for the operation of a pilot mail transport equipment service center in North Carolina.
This situation is not the first time that something questionable about DeJoy’s business past has come to light. A recent report in The Washington Post, which used seven employees of DeJoy’s old company as sources, claimed that employees who worked for DeJoy were pressured into donating to GOP causes and then reimbursed for the donations via increases to their bonuses. Reimbursements for political donations along those lines are illegal, although DeJoy, of course, has denied having anything to do with what the former employees are alleging. According to campaign finance records, 124 New Breed employees donated a total of over $1 million to GOP candidates between 2000 and 2014 — if even some of that was reimbused, then there could have been a huge criminal scheme at DeJoy’s old company under his leadership.
In the case of the early 2000s audit of his then-company’s relationship with the Postal Service, DeJoy told NBC (through a spokesperson) that the document supposedly focused more on the Postal Service side of the equation than his own company. In two reports to Congress in 1999, the then-inspector general for the Postal Service noted that a total of over $42 million that had been paid to DeJoy’s company could have been “put to better use.” On the job as Postmaster General, the Trump-allied DeJoy has faced steep scrutiny for impeding mail delivery with just a short while until the presidential election, when many mail-in ballots are expected to be used.