Residents React To U.S.P.S. Cutting Saturday Delivery

February 6, 2013

in News

By Gwen Stanley, Standard Staff
U.S. Postmaster General Patrick Donohoe announced Wednesday morning the U.S. Postal Service’s plans to cut Saturday delivery service, beginning in August.
Package delivery, which Donohoe said has increased by 14 percent since 2010, will continue on Saturdays.
“It’ll be six days of packages, five days of mail,” Donohoe said.
The estimated 22,500 jobs this will affect include letter carriers, people working in mail processing plants and clerks.
Donohoe cited a decline in post office use and said the hope an annual cost savings of $2 billion a year.
“I spend a lot of time outside this building in the field. You know what letter carriers tell me? ‘Mr. Donohoe, go to five days’ because they don’t have enough mail to sustain Saturdays.”
A number of local towns have been discussing cutting down hours that offices are open, a change scheduled to begin September of 2014. The talks came as Postal officials took a look at 13,000 offices across the country, determined to cut hours in order to a loss of $16 billion dollars last year.
Tom Rizzo, U.S. Postal Service Northern New England District, said that the stop on Saturday delivery won’t affect the agreed-upon hours that area towns have set for their own post offices.
“We’re not closing post offices on Saturday,” Rizzo said, “We’re cutting delivery. This won’t affect any of the hours that have been arranged for the offices to be open.”
Additionally, the Post Office will continue package delivery six days a week.
Betsy Siebeck, a Pomfret resident, said that she’d heard the news about the end of Saturday delivery and was disappointed, but it’s not clear to her what the financial reasoning is.
“Who would want to stop (Saturday delivery), given a choice? Both for the jobs and the convenience. But I don’t know what the financial realities are so I really can’t form an opinion on it until it’s clear why they’re doing it,” Siebeck said.
Woodstock Nick Scheu, said convenience was what he’d miss most, too.
“Loss of the convenience is a big thing,” he said. “ I understand the financial situation they’re facing, though. However, I’d rather lose Saturday delivery than lose completely our smaller post offices here —Taftsville and South Woodstock.”
“Some of my family is facing the same thing on an island in Maine,” he said, referring to one of a handful of post offices serving islands along the coast facing cuts because of costs.
“If I had to lose something, I’d lose Saturday delivery, because those smaller post offices are so important to the communities they’re in.”


{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

pat February 9, 2013 at 9:26 am

With the millions of eBay parcels alone, I can’t understand the there isn’t enough mail to deliver statement. Postage for monthly bills is too expensive, but 1st class parcels – under 13oz – are still affordable as is media mail. It must be the pension thing…

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