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Postal Service Plans to Update Its Closure List

By Ed O'Keefe

The Postal Service will provide on Wednesday an updated list of facilities to be considered for possible closure, according to a letter sent Friday to the Postal Regulatory Commission. The list is sure to be scrutinized by impacted communities and lawmakers who have already criticized the Postal Service for its handling of the closure process.

The list will identify the final collection of postal stations and branches to be considered for closure or consolidation. Earlier this summer, the Postal Service provided lawmakers with a list of 677 possible sites for closure. That number has since grown to 750 after further evaluation of eligible sites, according to Friday's letter. Despite that high number, Postal officials privately suggest the final list will likely number around 200.

Postmaster General John Potter would not commit to a specific number of sites set for closure, when asked earlier this month. Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) later criticized Potter for not providing specifics, saying Congress needed more information before moving forward with legislation to address the Postal Service's financial woes.

The Postal Service lost $2.4 billion during its third quarter, which ended in July. In an effort to cut costs, it announced a buyout plan for 30,000 employees earlier this week.

By Ed O'Keefe  | August 28, 2009; 9:09 PM ET
Categories:  Agencies and Departments  
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Comments

I know my post guy pulls up and then spends about 45 minutes on his iphone before he delivers the mail. guess he's doing ok - i can't afford an iphone... plenty of time to waste as well....

Posted by: Jaymand | August 29, 2009 1:14 AM | Report abuse

My mail carriers and window clerks over the years have always been courteous and hard-working as far as I can tell, and dependable. I don't know where all of the money is being lost, although I have some ideas, much of it having to do with a changed economy no longer reliant upon snail mail. In any event, I certainly wouldn't place the blame at the feet of the postal workers that I have seen in action. I'm sure other have had bad experiences, but I only feel compelled to hand out some well-deserved props.

Posted by: Jamalc | August 29, 2009 1:32 AM | Report abuse

If the postal department really wanted 2 save money closing a few post offices won't do it. The real savings can come from only delivering home & business mail 3 days a week. By dividing up the routes to only run 3 days a week for half the postal area into M-W-F for half the area & T-T-S for the other half. Cost of fuel & maintenance of vehicles would be nearly HALf what it is today. Probably 40% of the delivery vehicles could be phased out & replaced at a slower rate. Probably will take a little longer each day to deliver the mail, but that would put the hours for the deliverers at close to 40 hrs a week. More employees may want to take an early retirement, my Father did that many years ago. I am not sure why the post office carries all the junk mail for anyway, the weight of all that alone has added to the weight to a mail bag & may have contributed to some back problems for our mail carriers & most of it ends up in the trash anyway, stop wasting time with that junk mail POST OFFICE Now somebody that reads this find out what the potential savings that would produce, without shutting anythiung down. Although their are probably a few post offices that couyld be shut down all the time, IF someone would take the time 2 evalute them properly.

Posted by: mike_merkley1948 | August 29, 2009 3:58 AM | Report abuse

to mike-merkley: please explain what the carriers who carry m w f would do on t t s. with the same amount of employees i don't see any savings except more time off. if the po wants 150,000 to go then they will have to borrow money to pay us to our mra and they would save 1.2 billion a year alone in savings with al and sl earned. not to mention the amount they pay for ins and their part of our tsp.

Posted by: rosetodd | August 30, 2009 6:44 PM | Report abuse

Have you ever thought that maybe this mailman has worked 4 or 5 hours straight getting the mail for his route ready with no breakfast or lunch. You sound like someone who didnot get hired. These guys work very hard and don't want to be inside the office for breaks. I appreciate there service.

Posted by: Saintnick | August 31, 2009 12:20 AM | Report abuse

Isn't this typical of the Republicans? Under Bush, it was bust the unions, bust the unions and the Post Office had a strong one. They succeeded and now you see the results. Now the Republicans are crying because "you can't take away post offices in my constituency".

Posted by: pkbishop | August 31, 2009 10:55 AM | Report abuse

The real problem is that every time there is a republican in the white house the Postal Service is sabotaged from above. The 2006 lame duck republican congress added about 5 billion dollars PER YEAR in additional unnecessary expenses on the Postal Service as was their habit during the twelve years they had control of the congress.

Posted by: jbowen431 | September 1, 2009 12:34 AM | Report abuse

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