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Letters to the Editor

Letter: Postal plan

March 21, 2013

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To the editor:

Last month, Postmaster General Patrick Donohoe announced plans to end six-day mail delivery in August. This flies in the face of existing law which requires six-day delivery. Congress has mandated six-day delivery by law since 1983, which is also the last year that the USPS received any taxpayer funding. The people who would suffer include not just postal workers but small business, seniors, veterans and rural Americans.

Donohoe makes the dubious claim that ending Saturday delivery would save money. In fact, it would result in drastic service cuts and lost revenue.

What his plan fails to mention is that it would deprive small businesses of affordable and accessible shipping services, veterans of job opportunities and seniors of medication delivered to their door on Saturday, and make rural Americans second-class citizens with second-class service. It also would starve the USPS of needed revenue streams.

Eight million Americans are employed in the trillion-dollar-a-year mailing industry. Not only could it be your friendly letter carrier losing his or her job, it could just as easily be your neighbor who works in paper production, printing, shipping, greeting cards or direct mail.

This is not a done deal. The American public does not have to, nor should they accept the postmaster general’s ill-conceived and destructive plan. There are better ways to save the postal service.

Comments

Steve Jacob 1 year, 9 months ago

Too harsh wilbur, the post office downfall has nothing to do with them, just the sign of the times.

streetman 1 year, 9 months ago

Let's be honest. The Postal Service, as it is currently set-up, is a dinosaur -- and nothing can make it sustainable without major changes -- primarily down-sizing. If it had to pay for itself -- without wracking up (more) massive debt (including a typically over-generous retirement plan) -- we'd have to pay $1 + to mail a post card. It will be a struggle, but we'll survive not getting mail on Saturday, or maintaining a post office in the middle on nowhere. This is just a start.

headdoctor 1 year, 9 months ago

The anger of this letter writer is miss placed. Put the anger where it belongs. Congress has caused this problem. The Post Master General is just trying to make the best of it with what they have to work with. Almost every US entity that sells products or offers services took a hit with the downturn of the economy. The Post Office also has to change or adapt to the effects of how people communicate these days. The Postal Regulatory Commission and the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act of 2006 keeps beating them down. Both were brought about under Republican administrations. The USPS actually makes a profit every year but not after the Government requires them to honor the conditions of the 2006 Postal Act. Which was nothing more than another avenue to giving the Government more money to finance an unfunded war. As long as the Postal Regulatory Commission and the 2006 Postal Act are running things the USPS will never be able to be competitive or survive.

orbit 1 year, 9 months ago

What anger specifically? The PMG is entirely complicit with those seeking to privatize the USPS and has said very little about the PAEA. Instead of rallying the troops against Congress, the PMG is their lap dog. Also, it's the Postal Board of Governors, NOT the Postal Regulatory Commission that further hamstrings the USPS. I know my facts, all of them. You've made a good start but keep reading.

kansanbygrace 1 year, 9 months ago

USPS is one of the best mail services in the world. UPS and FedEx depend on USPS for several segments of their service.

If it were not for the bizarre and unjust requirement for this sole entity, of the entire business world, to fund retirement for 75 years into the future, they would be profitable and able to update and upgrade. How was it that Congress both semi-privatized and defunded the Post Office while mandating this outrageously punitive measure? Politics. Not practicality--politics!

Cant_have_it_both_ways 1 year, 9 months ago

It may of been, but who in congress sponsored the bill? Then who supported it?

Enlightenment 1 year, 9 months ago

I don't doubt they wanted to privatize the USPS. Interestingly, FEDEX is a proud member of ALEC and I'm sure they were all in favor of additional regulations on the USPS to force them out of business.

frank regnier 1 year, 9 months ago

I would not miss receiving junk mail on Saturday. I would love to see letter carriers off on Saturday so they can be with their families. I know many carriers who feel the same but are afraid to voice their opinions because the NALC does not agree with the PG Donohoe's decision. Parcels would still be delivered and mail could be distributed more evenly through out the week. It would help the USPS from staying in the red. How much money can the USPS continue to lose before they take action. Also, stop making cuts at the lower employee levels and start cutting the "fat" at the other end. If the USPS and the NALC are going to survive they will have to come to an agreement quickly. While this disagreement continues between the two parties, it is the "working employees" who continue to suffer. If you want to see what PG Donohoe earns click on this webpage> http://money.cnn.com/2012/03/02/news/economy/postal_chief_pay/index.htm

George_Braziller 1 year, 9 months ago

There are currently nine routes in Lawrence without an assigned carrier, mine is one of them. It's been a year since our route had the same carrier two days in a row.

Last Friday I finally asked the "carrier of the day" if we were ever going to get a permanent one. She said she hoped so. It was her day off but was called in to do the route because there wasn't anyone else available.

Right now mail is delivered somewhere between 8:30 and 5:30 if at all. One month I ended up with late fees on some bills I hadn't paid the previous month because they weren't (and never have been) delivered. Cutting it to five days will just make the situation worse.

Leslie Swearingen 1 year, 9 months ago

You can easily arrange to have all your bills e-mailed to you and then pay the same way, online. That is how I pay mine, just click, see how much I owe, fill out a little information, click and its all taken care of. All of this is done with a credit card of course. I also get my Social Security checks electronically put in my account and my taxes also. I can't remember the last time I mailed a letter or bought a stamp. Our family communicates though Skype (webcam), Facebook, etc. Much better.

George_Braziller 1 year, 9 months ago

That isn't an option for all of them. I also get my paycheck by mail because direct deposit isn't an option either. I ordered some business cards once and was able to track the shipment on-line. It showed that they had been delivered but they hadn't been.

Asked the carrier where they were and he said that he didn't know where he had delivered them. I finally got them five days later by sheer luck. He had delivered them to an address two blocks away and it happened to be to someone I had just met the week before. He sent me an e-mail letting me know he had them.

Lawrence Morgan 1 year, 9 months ago

This is a ridiculous comment. Poorer people often can't afford computers, and don't know how to use them. Get real!

frank regnier 1 year, 9 months ago

George_Braziller, why do you think there is nine vacant routes? How do you figure it will be worse if Saturday delivery was eliminated? If you are late paying your bills, then why do you plan paying earlier or do so online as others have recommended. If the USPS continues to lose money then you won't have to worry about it because they will be no USPS! Then you will have to depend on UPS and FEDEX for your deliveries and you will be forced to do business online. Just my opinion, disagree all you want but it is a fact that the USPS is losing money and fast!

George_Braziller 1 year, 9 months ago

The carrier I talked to said the routes were empty because there were openings the post office couldn't fill because they couldn't get anyone to apply.

It'll be worse without Saturday service because of all the Federal holidays that fall on Mondays where there's no delivery. Eliminate Saturday service and it turns into four days of mail that would have to be delivered on the Tuesday after a holiday. Just because the post office isn't open on Sunday doesn't mean mail isn't being processed.

deec 1 year, 9 months ago

Many vacant routes are being converted to temporary positions with few or no benefits. These position earn about 25% less than the career carriers and they are often hired for 360 days at a time, let go for 5 days, then rehired so that benefits won't kick in.

headdoctor 1 year, 9 months ago

Uhm, the 2006 Postal Act was passed during a Republican administration but there were several Democrats that supported it. Two of them co-sponsored the bill with the Republican that introduced the bill. Which is why I blame Congress for the screw up. Not just Republicans.

Dan Eyler 1 year, 9 months ago

I can comfortably state that I haven't mailed 5 letters or packages through the USPS in the past 2 years. I receive junk mail by a 6:1 ratio. Of the junk mail I don't read any of it. I have no issue with closing the postal service 2 days a week.

jafs 1 year, 9 months ago

Nice that you see the world through such a narrow lens.

LadyJ 1 year, 9 months ago

Seems congress has taken care of the problem today, Saturday deliveries will continue. George must live in my neighborhood, delivery has been terrible. We almost lost our health insurance because we didn't get an important letter from them. We are constantly taking other people's mail to their mailboxes that was delivered to ours. Sometimes we find mail in our box after we have taken in the mail so some of our neighbors (hopefully all of them) are doing the same. Once I was waiting for a package and saw the carrier coming and headed for the door. By the time I got there he was gone and a note saying I would have to go pick the package up because we weren't there. We have a doorbell and he did not ring it or knock. Like George, it's always a different carrier. What deec said is also true, heard it from a carrier that was working under those terms. He ended up getting his kids a medical card so at least they would have medical care while he and his wife had no coverage.

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