Congressman tells PMG Bronx consolidations are unfair, unwise

The following information was released by the office of New York Rep. José E Serrano:

Congressman Jose E. Serrano sent a letter to the Postmaster General today, warning him that plans to consolidate and close postal facilities in the Bronx was an unwise idea that unfairly impacts the Bronx community. The full text of the letter is below:

Mr. Patrick R. Donahoe
Postmaster General
U.S. Postal Service
475 L’Enfant Plaza, SW
Washington, DC 20260-0010

Dear Postmaster General Donahoe:

As you struggle to address your budget deficit through postal consolidation, I wanted to register my concern that our Bronx community is being asked to bear a disproportionate burden of your intended cost-cutting.

I was disappointed to learn that once again the Postal Service has identified the Bronx, NY Processing and Distribution Center for consolidation with the Morgan Processing and Distribution Center. This is something that was successfully challenged and halted in the past, and there are still no valid reasons to close a facility of such importance to our Bronx community.

This facility provides more than 100 well paid career positions for our Bronx residents. Although many of these employees would be offered positions in other more distant locations, in many cases these Bronx workers do not have access to private transportation to enable them to get to these alternative and inconvenient locations. In addition, the loss of these jobs in our community will have an impact on our Bronx businesses and restaurants. During this time of economic hardship, our community cannot absorb the loss of these well paying jobs.

My Bronx community is also very concerned about the decision of the U.S. Postal Service to move forward with the closure of post offices in our Bronx communities. Our community is dependent upon the services provided in these local post offices, and these closures would have a negative impact on the ability of my constituents to conveniently access necessary services. Seniors would have to walk up to 12 blocks to get to the closest available post offices. For those on a fixed income who may not be able to afford the cost of public transit, let alone a taxi, a 12 block walk is a potential barrier to using postal services.

I would appreciate your providing our office with a complete and updated listing on the status of each of the post offices in the 16th Congressional district. For the post offices that are currently targeted for closure, I would like to request information on what these closures will mean in terms of distance for my constituents to the next nearest post office and the number of jobs that will be lost as a result of the closures. In addition, I would like to understand the process and criteria used to determine which postal facilities are targeted for closure.

I am concerned that our Bronx community is being unfairly impacted as the Postal Service struggles to address its budget deficit. While I understand the need to reduce costs, I will continue to oppose efforts that unjustly target our Bronx community. The Bronx has yet to see the full benefits of our economic recovery and the postal jobs and services provided by the post offices in my district that you have marked for closure would have a negative impact on our neighborhood and families.

As you know, I remain committed to working with you to find ways to address your budgetary challenges. At the same time, however, I want to be sure that our Bronx community is not facing an unequal share of this burden when compared to other locations in New York and around the nation.

Thank you for your kind consideration and I look forward to your reply.

Sincerely,

Jose E. Serrano

Member of Congress