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The Verde Independent | Cottonwood, Arizona

home : latest news : latest news June 25, 2016


3/22/2011 2:51:00 PM
Postal closures, rate hikes, layoffs ...

Jon Hutchinson
Staff Reporter


VERDE VALLEY-- There is a persistent rumor this past week that the Clarkdale Main Post Office will be closed. At this point, there is no indication that rumor is true or false. The acting station manager has said the branch is on a list for consideration, but no decision has been made.

New cutbacks will be announced by the Postal Service this week to help stem its tsunami of red ink. U.S. Postmaster General Patrick R. Donahoe is to make an internal announcement Thursday that will become public Friday.



Facility closures

The Postal Service is considering closing up to 3,000 post offices, stations and branches by next year. And it's not just the smaller facilities.

According to a release from the postal service union, it's the Postal Service's intent to conduct an Area Mail Processing feasibility study at the Flagstaff Customer Service Mail Processing Facility for possible consolidation of some operations into the Phoenix. A similar study is being made of dozens of facilities across the country.



Employee cutbacks

We know from Donahoe's recent announcement that he intends to reduce the officer ranks of the postal service 16 percent.

That is a figure of 7,500 employees in supervisory, managerial and postmaster positions this week, with a total of 30,000 total postal workers by the end of the year.

Donahoe says he hopes to reduce the number of employees from the current 575,000 today down to 400,000 in five years. There have been 230,000 already cut.



Postal rates are going up in April

No change for standard letters. They will remain at 44 cents, but each additional ounce will now cost 20 cents. The cost of a post card will increase one penny.

Prices for other mailing services, including standard mail, periodicals, package services, and extra services, also will change. Business mailers will see price increases in a variety of categories.



Why?

The postal service is struggling with the impacts of new technology on the mail handling service. They say that email and online bill-paying has made a serious dent in revenues. Reportedly, Netflick mailers improved the situation for a while, but now people have moved to Internet streaming of movies. Mail volume has declined by 6.5 billion pieces.

Last year, USPS recorded a loss of $8.5 billion.


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