NAPUS and the LEAGUE have received Steven Goldberg’s arbitration decision on POStPLan. Both organizations are deeply disappointed with the decision and are still working through the details of the arbitration document. Clearly this will have an impact on PMRs in 4-hour RMPOs, vacant 6-hour RMPOs and 6-hour Postmaster positions in the future. We can be thankful that incumbent 6-hour Postmasters (including those being RIF’d to 6-hour Postmaster positions), will keep their Postmaster position as long as they do not vacate the office. Once these offices are vacated, they too will be staffed by APWU employees.
Here is an overview of the arbitration:
• 2-hour RMPOs will stay staffed with PMRs
• 4-hour RMPOs will be staffed with APWU PSEs. The PMRs in these offices will have the opportunity to take the test and apply for the positions.
• 6-hour RMPOs will be staffed by NTFT employees or traditional employees. Those offices with incumbent Postmasters, including those accepting their own office as a RIF offer with a reduction to 6 hours, will stay in the jobs until vacated.
• PTPOs 6-hour offices will stay staffed with a Postmaster. These offices were not part of the arbitration decision since they still have all of the Postmaster administrative responsibilities.
When any RMPO or PTPO is evaluated and increases to a Level 18, the office will then be posted and filled by a non-bargaining employee and managed by a Postmaster.
All Level 18 offices will be staffed with PTFs instead of PSEs, ending the staffing issues for many Level 18 Postmasters.
Both Postmaster organizations continue to review the POStPlan Arbitration. Clearly the fact that Postmaster administrative duties were removed from the 6-hour Postmaster positions and the 4-hour RMPOs weighed heavily on the arbitrator’s decision.
We will keep you posted as to further developments regarding the arbitration as well as the timeline for conversion of the 4-hour RMPOs from PMR to PSE employees.
WASHINGTON – Senator John Hoeven today said he has received a confirmation from Deputy Postmaster General Ronald A. Stroman that the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) will adhere to its commitment in April to maintain current service hours at 30 post offices in the Bakken region that were going to have their hours reduced.
While data released last week suggested that some of the largely rural post offices warranted having their hours reduced, Stroman said the USPS recognizes the growth trend in the Bakken region and has the flexibility to consider other factors in their decision making, which Stroman referenced in an April 10, 2014 letter to Hoeven. Hoeven had written a letter to the USPS in January to press for continued improvements in service for North Dakota.
“We got a firm commitment late yesterday from the USPS that it will maintain current hours at approximately 30 post offices in the growing Bakken region, as we requested and as was promised in April,” Hoeven said. “At the same time, about 30 others are still scheduled to have their hours reduced, which we’ve asked the postal service to reevaluate in a timely manner because of the continuing growth of our state.”
Hoeven has been making the case to postal officials that North Dakota is a growing state, with increasing postal needs. He pressed the USPS to use more current data to make decisions about reducing service hours. Last week the postal service completed its updated statewide review of 278 post offices in North Dakota using Fiscal Year 2013 data on facility revenue and mail volume. The results left most post offices at current service hour levels and suggested that approximately 30 post offices might have hours reduced. An approximate breakdown of the 278 is as follows:
59 post offices remained or increased to 8 hour.
About 160 post offices have already reduced retail hours beginning in January 2013.
30 additional post offices in the Bakken region will remain at current operational levels, as Stroman related to Hoeven in the April letter and appendix.
About 30 post offices could be facing a reduction of service hours this year.
The USPS, however, will be scheduling community meetings to discuss any proposed reductions with citizens before those reductions go into effect, and the senator encourages citizens to show up and express their concerns. In the meantime, Hoeven is working to make sure there is adequate rural delivery, and 24 hour access to post office boxes and self-service kiosks that offer customers round-the-clock access to buy stamps, track packages and obtain other services.
SEDGWICK, AR (KAIT) – With just 33 customers, the United States Postal Service says changes must come to the Sedgwick Post Office.
There might be plenty of traffic that goes past the Sedgwick Post Office on Highway 63, but as for traffic volume inside, Sedgwick falls in line with many other small town post offices with not enough business.
“This is where everybody gets their news for the town,” Sedgwick Mayor J Stanley Debow told Region 8 NewsNewsbow grew up in Sedgwick and says while there might not be a large volume of business going through, it’s a staple in the community and one of the few things left keeping the town viable.
“It’s all about gone. Post office is about the last business here in the city that I’m aware of,” Debow said.
A plan to save money by cutting hours at some rural post offices is coming closer to completion. Beginning in July, the United States Postal Service will be conducting public meetings in some rural towns to discuss the possible cuts.
The USPS first brought up the issue of making cuts to help save money two years ago.
In 2012, the USPS launched the cost cutting POST plan, a plan where closing small post offices was an extreme option. The plan sparked nationwide outcry which convinced postal leaders to take a second look at where money could be saved.
There are a lot of anxious POStPlan impacted Postmasters waiting for final news on the specific RIF timelines and events associated with this phase of POStPlan implementation. We continue to meet with Postal Headquarters and minor changes come from each of these meetings which will push back any formal announcement. The Postmaster organizations and Postal Headquarters have spent a great deal of time discussing the implementation and events that will lead up to the final RIF date, with the same end result in mind—get everyone placed before the RIF effective date. These discussions have been in the best interests of all Postmasters who are still impacted and because of this the RIF timeline has been extended. The effective RIF date for impacted Postmasters will now be 1/10/2015. Continue reading →
As the result of a recent meeting between NAPUS President Bob Rapoza and incoming President Tony Leonardi with Postal Service representatives, a clarification has been issued on the effective date of Level 18 offices that would be downgraded in FY 2016. The original statement from Postal Headquarters was that while encumbered EAS-18 offices would continue to be evaluated under POStPlan on an annual basis, none of these offices would be downgraded until FY 2016. During a recent meeting with Postal Service representatives, NAPUS requested that the downgrade of encumbered EAS-18 offices be extended through FY 2016, and that request was approved, with an effective date of the end of September, 2016.
POStPlan office evaluations will still take place as originally planned
As announced earlier, encumbered EAS-18 offices that are evaluated under POStPlan in FY 2014, won’t be changed until FY 2016. These offices will be evaluated as originally intended under the POStPlan process in Fiscal Year’s 2014 and 2015, but the results of the evaluations won’t take place until FY-2016. This decision comes as welcome news to Postmasters who were upgraded to EAS-18 under the POStPlan process last year, thus allowing them additional time to remain at their current salary levels.
The future of rural post offices across Vermont could bring major changes and slashed service.
"The people that are here, their day either begins, or ends at this post office. It’s a way of life for these people, and for me," said Charlie Metz of West Newbury.
Dozens of West Newbury residents gathered for a heated discussion Monday night over the future of the local post office. Many argued the building is more than a place to collect mail calling it the hub of the community.
"This is a community center, you come and see your neighbors and get your mail and hear someone is ill, so there is all of that," says Andrea Nye of West Newbury who opposes a recent U.S. Postal Service decision to cut hours at the town’s branch in half.
The USPS is billions of dollars in the hole and is scaling back to close the gap. West Newbury is one of 148 post offices in Vermont to have retail hours adjusted.
“I suspect the authorities dropped the charges because they were afraid of us,” said Rev. John Schwiebert, one of the “Forever Five” arrestees (so named for the “forever” stamp and to protect “forever” the postal service).“They knew we were planning to plead not-guilty to criminal trespass and to demand a jury trial.We were ready to plead that our “occupation” of the Salem mail processing plant was in the public interest, to preserve our constitutionally mandated postal service.”The protesters claim that closure of the Salem plant is itself a criminal act, violating Title 39, U.S. Code, Sec. 404 which requires the postal service to provide a “maximum degree of effective and regular services…” and to consider the effect of plant “consolidations” on communities, jobs and service.
Mail sorting machines from the Salem plant began to be removed on April 30th, headed north to Portland and south to Medford.In the beginning of May, mail collection times and overnight delivery standards changed throughout Oregon.Although their plants are not scheduled for closure until later this year, mail from Eugene/ Springfield, Bend and Pendleton is already being shipped all the way to Portland to be sorted.Mail is being delayed one or two days.
The U.S. Postal Service’s own studies (see attached), which they attempted to suppress, showed that big mailers leave the system as a result of such delays, costing more in lost revenue than is saved by lowering labor costs, not to mention the dramatic increase in trucking costs as mail is transported hundreds of extra miles to be sorted in the closest still open facilities.
“Postal management is tearing apart the infrastructure of the public postal service,” said Jamie Partridge, retired letter carrier and one of the Forever Five arrestees.Vowing further bold actions, Partridge declared that “we plan to escalate this fight to save our national treasure.”
The Salem, Springfield, Bend and Pendleton plant closures will eliminate approximately three hundred local union jobs, delay Oregon mail delivery, and disproportionately affect small businesses, the elderly, rural communities, the one-half of the public that pays bills by mail and the many who lack access to reliable internet service. Oregon’s vote-by-mail system could be compromised.
Despite a “no lay-off” provision in union contracts, at least forty workers in the Salem plant have lost their jobs, according to local union officials.Twenty-eight were forced into early retirement and twenty Postal Support Employees “lost their hours.”Over sixty other workers were “excessed” to Portland or other facilities.
At least eighteen of these union, postal jobs will be subcontracted to Matheson Flight Extenders, according to union leaders in Portland.Twelve mail handler positions and six clerk positions will be filled by low wage, non-postal, non-union workers at Matheson, which owns a warehouse next to the USPS Portland Air Cargo Center.Postal management states that the PACC cannot hold all the machines from Salem, so they must moved into the private facility.They claim that union workers are too expensive, thus subcontracting is required.
Further subcontracting has hit postal truckers in the Portland area.Faced with understaffing and extensive overtime, the USPS decided to contract out twenty tractor-trailer routes to Dill Star Trucking, instead of hiring union postal truck drivers.Claiming an “emergency”, postal management issued the no-bid contract, sub-leased postal trailers to Dill Star, and put APWU-represented postal truckers in “short” trucks with many on stand-by for up to six hours.
The protesters, organized by Communities and Postal Workers United, a national grassroots network, claim that a 2006 Congressional mandate, which forces the U.S. Postal Service to prefund retiree health benefits 75 years in advance, has created a phony financial crisis.Not only would the postal service have been profitable without the mandate, says CPWU, the USPS has also overpaid tens of billions into two pension funds.
The activists are calling on postal management to suspend cuts and closures and allow Congress to fix the finances by repealing the prefunding mandate and refunding the pension surplus.Twin bills, HR 630, sponsored by U.S. Representative Peter DeFazio (Oregon) and S 316, sponsored by Senator Bernie Sanders (Vermont), would fix postal finances and prevent plant and office closures and service cuts.
Across the country, over 3700 post offices are at the risk of closure, including many historic buildings with New Deal public art.
George W. Bush signed legislation in 2006 that destroyed the financial stability of the Postal Service and laid the groundwork for its privatization. The Post Office is being required to pay its pension fund 75 years in advance, which needs to be stopped. Without this requirement, the post office is actually making a profit.
C.B. Richard Ellis (CBRE) chaired by Richard Blum has an exclusive contract to sell USPS properties. Billionaire Blum is a UC regent and is married to Senator Dianne Feinstein.
We are in immediate need of legal fees to stop the imminent sale of the Berkeley Post Office.
Please click on the link below and donate what you can. GO TO http://www.nationalpostofficecollabor… then click on DONATE OR MAIL A CHECK TO: National Post Office Collaborate P.O. Box 1234, Berkeley, CA 94701 Save the Berkeley Post Office Committee EMail: firstname.lastname@example.org WEB: savethebpo.com
FACEBOOK: Save the Berkeley Post Office
Freddie Gorman (April 11, 1939 — June 13, 2006), who wrote the original lyric to “Please Mr. Postman”, was a retired letter carrier in Detroit MI both before and after the hit song.
Post Office Graphic in the video is the work of Jos Sances and Art Hazelwood.