“While Saturday mail delivery has dominated recent discussions, little attention is being paid to other drastic measures the USPS is taking that will significantly delay mail and permanently damage the nation’s mail system,” he said. Since 2012, the USPS has closed 114 mail processing plants, one third of the nation’s mail processing capacity. Reneging on its commitment to lawmakers and communities, the agency announced last month that it was accelerating plans to close even more mail processing facilities. The USPS said it will consolidate 71 plants this year that were originally scheduled for possible closure in 2014.
“These closures will eliminate jobs, harm communities, and delay mail delivery every day — Monday, through Saturday,” Guffey said. They will drastically curtail local mail sortation and will virtually eliminate overnight delivery. Service standards have already been lowered.
“And for what?” Guffey asked. A study prepared for the Postal Service indicated that the revenue lost from consolidations could be as high as $5.2 billion (1) , and the Postal Regulatory Commission has concluded that the net savings could be as low as $46 million annually (2) .
“In addition, the Postal Service has reduced hours at approximately 6,500 post offices and plans to cut hours at 6,500 more,” he noted.
“The Postal Service cannot cut its way out of this manufactured crisis,” he said. “Congress must act now to pass meaningful postal reform – reform that restores financial stability to the Postal Service without destroying service or harming postal workers,” he said. “Congress must act now to prevent the Postal Service from implementing the devastating cuts in service caused by the closure of mail processing plants and post offices.
“We are calling on Congress to support legislation that addresses the cause of the Postal Service’s manufactured financial crisis, protects service standards, and preserves the nation’s vital mail processing network,” he said.
(1) Postal Regulatory Commission Case No. N2012-1, APWU Exh. XE (Tr. 4/906)
(2) Postal Regulatory Commission Advisory Opinion, Case No. N2012-1, at 1-3, 142.