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Postal regulator: Saturday mail cut 'not a done deal'

By Ed O'Keefe

The nation's top postal regulator struck back Thursday at suggestions that the end of Saturday mail delivery is near, cautioning customers that delivery cuts won't occur until her panel issues its opinions.

Appearing on C-SPAN's "Washington Journal" (see clip above), Postal Regulatory Commission Chairman Ruth Goldway said the U.S. Postal Service's proposal to trim delivery to five days per week is a "multi-pronged process" that will require input from the PRC and lawmakers.

"It’s not a done deal by any means," Goldway said, noting that her commission will hold town hall meetings with concerned customers across the country and consult with lawmakers before making a final decision, which is expected by the fall.

Goldway defended the continuing role of hard-copy mail when asked about a report in Thursday's Post that postal officials had to submit their proposals via e-mail.

"Hard copy is still important. I believe there is a role for it and that role may be hindered if we remove Saturday service," Goldway said. "That’s why we’re going to talk about it."

No matter what Goldway and her colleagues decide, a majority of Americans support cutting Saturday mail deliveries if it will help the Postal Service cut costs.

Leave your thoughts in the comments section below

By Ed O'Keefe  | April 1, 2010; 1:15 PM ET
Categories:  Agencies and Departments  
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major stories need to be brought to the attention of the GENERAL PUBLIC to make them see that the Post Office would not be in the condition that they are in if they had not been overcharged the $75 BILLION dollars. Letthe public know the TRUE story

Posted by: fixitplease | April 1, 2010 5:14 PM | Report abuse

When companies struggle they look for ways to cut costs. The post office claims that it has done all that it can do. They have cut the work force so low that it has hurt service to the public. Until they clean house at the top and get rid of the management that doesn't touch the mail, it will not get better. They micromanage the workers but not management. Who's in charge of evaluating these people and determining if they are really needed???????

Posted by: btwilson | April 1, 2010 11:48 PM | Report abuse

Brings to mind the article on the rent free housing for management across the country. A very nice perk that most working people don't get. Saturday delivery is as American as apple pie, I hate to see it go. Postage stamps are still a deal in America, others charge as much as sixty cents for a letter.

Posted by: sesit | April 2, 2010 4:45 PM | Report abuse

thank goodness! someone is saying that the POST Office does not have a "done-deal" about stopping Sat delivery.I think that based on the unreliable service we now get, things will only get worse. Delayed delivery will only bring more 'default' money to the banks and creditcard companies. Prescription mail order plans will be delayed. I now have to pay more out of pocket costs to ensure that I have medicine when I need it.

Posted by: katydid3363 | April 2, 2010 5:46 PM | Report abuse

The Postal Service made public issues that touch lightly on the its problems and seem's determined to slight it's viability based soley on cutting the Service and Workforce; measures for which will degrade it further which it already has. The Postal Service has yet to cut the High salary posistions that have no relevance to process and deliver the mail; instead have increased efforts to micro-manage a cutt-throat environment. The Postal Sevice is becomming the The Postal Corporation of If it cost to much We won't Deliver. The financial woes are attributed to the Prefunding of the Retirement which could be fixed through congress that would not cost Tax Payers. The Big Questions? Why the Big Lie? Why the Missleading of the Public? Question the reasoning in destroying a Public Service. Because that is what will happen in the name of Big Money and Politics. Who looses? Middle income Americans and those they serve.

Posted by: B4honor | April 2, 2010 10:27 PM | Report abuse

Thanks Ed Okeefe!
You are the first media reporter that has let the real truth be known, finally. The real truth being that this is postal managements last ditch effort to save their own skins. This is why they have spawned this media blitz. Their idea is to trim the blue collar workers to save the white collar ones. Oh and yes have Saturday off too. But they don’t work Saturday now anyway and we blue collar workers seem to do fine without them. I have been a letter carrier since 1983 and here is how I see it. We had 2 managers at our zip code for 110 workers. The old one came in at 10am to get his golf clubs and the new one was there to call maintenance to fix our trucks. Now there is today. We have 8 managers for 80 workers. We lost 30 real workers and gained 6 more people with clipboards. There are 43 thousand zip codes in the us today and I would guess from lowest to highest management salaries for the 6 new bosses at our station to be $60,000. Total bill for these 6 extra non productive workers is a whopping 15 billion 480 million dollars. And the post office is only 3 billion in the red. I say dump the clipboards and how much was a stamp in 1983? Oh yea 20 cents. It’s time to fire Potter and all the other useless non productive personnel and give it back to the proud people who do the real work. Thanks Ed

Posted by: firepotter | April 3, 2010 2:51 AM | Report abuse

The article about our management is so true. The last 2-3 years they have been cutting craft worker positions left and right, and when someone retires they don't hire anyone to fill that spot, but yet there always seems to be more and more managers. Us carriers are so short on help we can't even deliver all the mail we have now to our customers when its suppose to be there. We have TCV coverages on Sat. that don''t get out until wed. sometimes and there suppose to be delivered no later then Mon. The other thing we don't hear about anymore is the gas prices. Three years ago when the gas prices went way up is really when we started hearing about the USPS starting to lose money. Now that seems to have got pushed to the side and they got the idea that it's Sat. delivery that is the promblem. I don't agree with that I still believe that one of the biggest factors is the gas prices not the economy. They say that every penny the gas goes up it cost the USPS an extra 8 million dollars. Where did all those talks go? I really hope our Postal Regulatory Commissioners read some of these articles that people post that actually work with this mess every day and are able to see what is really going on instead of hearing all this crap from Mr. Fraud Jack Potter. Thanks!

Posted by: MinnesotaMailman | April 3, 2010 7:36 AM | Report abuse

I don't work for the post office, so I can't comment on the management structure, but I can say that as a small businessperson, I rely on 6 day per week mail not only for shipping but advertising as well. Furthermore -- having seen this guy Potter testifying before several Congressional committees, I must ask -- does this guy have a brain? No organization of which I'm aware could have $78 billion dollars skimmed by the Feds and not experience a cash flow problem. He should be fighting to straighten that out.

That having been said --- where is it written that the US Postal Service is supposed to "make" money? I thought the purpose of the USPS was to provide universal 6-day service to the public.

Hang in there guys! I switched from UPS to USPS Priority, and have both saved money AND received improved service (much improved, I might add). I find it difficult to believe that the current administration would sign a 5 day per week bill.

Posted by: fnlvnchk | April 3, 2010 10:04 AM | Report abuse

It is time for Potter to step down. He's not willing to open his mind to suggestions, he's got his mind set on eliminating a day of delivery. That will benefit no one. Has he even asked us, the postal employees, NO he has not. There are many ways of reducing costs. The white collar workers in the USPS would only waste whatever savings they made on something else. Most likely a stupid theory or idea as they have in the not so recent past, like all those flat sorters that sequence the flats. STUPID! Spend a ton of money on the one area that has dropped in volume. Who thought that up? And even when they know how stupid it is, let's go ahead and do it anyway, and add more to it. Just one way of saving a ton of money is for the processing plants to shut OFF the heat in the winter months. Our DBCS machines produce a lot of heat and with us running up and down the machine sweeping the mail we are dripping in sweat. You can always put more clothes on, there is only so much you can take off. That's just one of many ways to save money, and the USPS is nationwide. Just imagine the savings on that idea alone. If Potter would just ask us, the postal employees, he might learn something. Perhaps he doesn't want mere craft employees showing him up. Ask for our opinions, we are the ones that see the waste every single day. Mostly coming from the top, we could stand to cut the fat at the top, leave the craft employees alone. We already carry the burden. Many are over burdened with the excess work heaped on to them. And then still expect them to get all the work done in 8 hours, when you gave them an additional 2 hours of work. Your math doesn't work!

Posted by: mrj1984 | April 3, 2010 11:21 AM | Report abuse

PMG Potter recently testified that
if OPM were to pay back the overfunding
of future retirees health benefits,
there would be no need to eliminate Saturday
mail delivery. This seems to be the most
prudent course of action. Approx.
40 thousand more persons on the un-employment
rolls is not the answer with Saturday mail
delivery elimination.

Posted by: rosaybill | April 3, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Mr Potter should resign! He is beyond his usefullness if his answer to Postal problems is to cut service when the only thing we offer IS service. Congress should make Potter open his books and show where the losses are. Revenue is NOT down. Revenue has held steady @ $75 Billion over the last 3 years. Pretty good in a down economy. $75 Billion is a lot of product. What would Mr. Potter`s pension be if he retired today?

Posted by: TheBurger | April 3, 2010 5:25 PM | Report abuse

The last sentence of this article is false. This so-called majority of Americans that support Saturday delivery is a mere 300,000. This is not a majority when you are talking about a country that has over 300 million people in it. Also the questions were misleading, like "Do you support five day delivery if it means lower postage rates?" The post office will not adjust rates if it goes to five day delivery. They just added that last part to get the survey results they wanted. The questions should have stated the truth. "Do you support five day delivery if it means you won't get your Netflix on Saturday?" or "Do you support five day delivery if it means another 80,000+ Americans will lose their jobs?" or that "medicines, and other services will be delayed" Go to for the truth.

Posted by: zcook7 | April 5, 2010 1:04 AM | Report abuse

I am a letter carrier and I may sound biased when I say that doing away with saturday delivery is a bad idea. Six day delivery of mail be it a letter, magazine, package or bulk mail is what binds this country together. It is an American institution that should be preserved and protected from being undermined. This is the best and largest postal service in the world and I say that congress make the postal service and all it's major unions work closely together, in working out an alternative solution in making the postal service viable and competitive well into the 21st century.

Posted by: truj123 | April 5, 2010 2:46 AM | Report abuse

I have worked for the post office for over ten years. And I have seen the great decline in the mail volume. But I have also seen the post office allow people that can't even perform there job still have a job over the years. There has been the mismanagement of time for all the grievances to the unions. They say not to cut saturday but the majority of the time, one day of the week we don't have enough mail for everyone to work a eight hour day. I think they need to look in the future it;s not getting any better.

Posted by: korey8921 | April 5, 2010 9:51 PM | Report abuse

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