WEST NEWBURY, Vt. -
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.