WASHINGTON -- The Postal Service is planning to drop Saturday delivery of first-class mail, a congressional source said on Wednesday.
The cash-strapped mail agency will still deliver packages, said the source, who is familiar with the matter but not authorized to speak on the record.
USPS spokesman Mark Saunders could not confirm the change, but said the agency would issue a news release on Wednesday.
Well, I guess they had to. Although, now they are not going to be even remotely competitive with UPS, FEDEX, etc.
Sad, working for the Post Office was once considered a decent paying, good benefits job.
[quote] Although, now they are not going to be even remotely competitive with UPS, FEDEX, etc.
Per the article, they will still deliver packages.
Granny will have to make sure birthday cards she sends arrive Monday through Friday.
Last year USPS said Tuesday has the lowest mail volume, so they pick Saturday to stop delivery.
[quote] Last year USPS said Tuesday has the lowest mail volume, so they pick Saturday to stop delivery.
Because they aren't going to stop delivery on a day when most businesses are open. Especially when most holidays fall on a Monday.
This makes sense. Finally, some common sense.
If we can only get the gov't to stop making pennies and paper dollars.....
No R6. What we need to get the government to do is UNDO the damage that they did to the USPS in the first place by their ridiculous insistence that the USPS must fund its retiree benefits 75 years in advance. No other government agency is required to do this.
If the government mismanages a postal revive that has been in place sinece 1792, how will they fare on public healthcare?
[R8] The failure of the post office is because so few use it. Don't blame it as institutional failure although there is much to criticize.
They have been required to deliver mail 6 days each week and to offer services at post offices that should be closed. I can name many in my area that have no justification to be open. They are not able to close any without approval of congress. House members of course will fight to keep them open in their district.
USPS has done many things in the last 20 years to reduce costs but have been burdened by overpaid long term employees. As they retire the cost of personal drops.
Freeper R8, please see R7.
[quote]The failure of the post office is because so few use it.
Can anyone who works for USPS confirm a rumor that they plan an Early Retirement Buy Out for employees scheduled to leave within five years?
I use the post office twice a year. I no longer receive any bills by mail. I bank on line get due notices on line and pay on line.
R14, educate yourself before you speak your fake facts.
1. This will cause all kinds of problems for Netflix.
2. There's gonna be a helluva lot of mail on Mondays.
What's up with people who believe that just because THEY don't use or need something, nobody else uses or needs it either?
"I have all of my groceries delivered by Amazon, so they should raze the grocery store down the street and put up an Anytime Fitness and Red Mango!"
"I haven't watched Sesame Street since I was 5 and I hate the British and science, so I never watch PBS. Let's cut their funding!"
"I haven't mailed anything in 3 years and I only check my mail once every 6 months! DISMANTLE IT."
[quote]If the government mismanages a postal revive that has been in place sinece 1792, how will they fare on public healthcare?
I know! They're going to fuck this up just like they did the Pony Express. Why at one time you could send a telegraph anywhere in this country and it would be delivered within hours. And don't even get me started on what they've done to our once proud military. Our Cavalry used to be the fines in the word, and now we would be hard pressed to mount a singe charge against hostile Indians. I don't know how the settlers in Phoenix, Tucson and other outposts sleep at night.
R20: How about those bayonets?
I have a post office a block away from my home. The people who staff the windows there are unfailingly friendly, helpful and courteous and I enjoy doing business with them.
For forty-six cents, I can mail a local letter at that post office and it will be delivered the following day. There is no other delivery option in my area that offers the same level of service for anywhere near that price.
I would love to know who was behind the stupid bill that crippled the USPS financially. Was it UPS? FedEx? Someone must have mounted a lobbying effort that was able to buy enough Congress members to make that bill a reality.
This is a perfect example of the U.S. Congress working for big business against the best interests of the people.
Do people send fewer letters now because of email? Yes. But then think of all the new business the internet has generated for USPS--eBay, Netflix, Amazon, etc. And I'm sure their profit margins are better on packages than junk mail anyway. Now SHADDUP with your, "Nobody uses it anymore" bullshit.
[[R8]] The failure of the post office is because so few use it.
I dont believe that. I just left my local branch and I barely got a parking space. Went I went inside and the line was hanging out the door, and its always like this on weekdays.
Don't know what the service is called, but mail order companies ship UPS and FedEX to the local post office. Then it's delivered by the letter carrier.
I like the comment on the article about Canada Post.
When I was in Toronto I would always see Canada Post counters in Shoppers Drug Marts (an aside: Shoppers always had Bea Arthur do fab commercials for them) and that made a lot more sense to me to do it that way....
....rather than paying a bahillion bucks for a big old building that was expensive as fuck just to heat or cool....
But we shall still have twice daily deliveries of the post and Marconigrams, shan't we?
R26, the USPS IS doing that now. In my city alone they have opened up retail locations inside already existing retail stores. But that doesn't address the issue of PO boxes. there will still need to be physical locations for the USPS that cater to those customers.
R28 Of course. But they can also do that in a building they don't own.
Almost every corporation today does not own the actual buildings they are in - even if they have their names on the top, etc. It's cheaper to rent the space from a holding company - not only for maintenance but for tax purposes.
The USPS needs to consider the same. Some of the most valuable assets it has is the beautiful buildings it owns in many small and mid-sized cities.
r25 FedEx SmartPost.
I get a lot of the stuff I order online via this shipping method.
Right R29 and that makes them sitting ducks. The sears store near my house is still open when Sears stores everywhere are closing. Why? Because they own the land and the building and so they only need to make enough to cover the costs of the inventory and salaries.
I think it would shock you to see how little real estate they actually own.
Most places they rent their buildings under long term (like 25 or 30 year) leases. The buildings are custom built for them in most cases, and it used to be a great investment to snag a USPS lease and build them a building. I know a couple people who own multiple post office buildings in small towns.
Here's their website showing their properties for sale:
Anytime they tried to monetize or innovate their services, lobbyists for FedEX and UPS would try to prevent them, saying a government agency had not business intruding on private turf. They couldn't win.
This is long and you may not want to read it, this isn't a simple "business" decision. There are several things going on:
1) the USPS used to have a surplus and a big pension fund, and any pool of money is going to foment dogfights in DC (at one point the USPS had to pay for the pensions for employees' FORMER jobs in the military to plug a federal budget problem).
2) Congress has Constitutional oversight over the USPS, even though it's an independent agency that doesn't use tax funds (except for those awful mailings from Congressmen they don't have to pay for, and to blind people).
3) Republicans HATE the post office, with its hundreds of thousands of unionized employees and solid path to the middle class, and would love to use it as another laboratory for their privatization and outsourcing experiments
4) Private business--UPS and FedEx--would love a piece of what they know is a profitable business, and give twice as much in campaign donations to Republicans than they do to Democrats.
Remember the 2006 election? Democrats won majorities in both the House and the Senate, so it was the end of that era when Republicans held the Presidency, Senate, and House.
In December 2006 the lame-duck Republican Congress rushed through, and Bush signed, a crippling piece of legislation called the Postal Accountability & Enhancement Act. It requires the USPS to save up (in just 10 years) the next 75 years of employees' pension payments. Which, of course, no other agency has to do, and I doubt any private business does.
It's those payments that make it a money-losing operation currently. If they didn't have that onerous obligation in 2012, there would have been a $1.2 Billion SURPLUS. They've done an admirable job of modernizing and automating and running it as a business.
USPS would like to be even more entrepreneurial while continuing to provide universal service--like postal services in other countries do successfully--but guess what?
The Republicans' 2006 law forbids that; they can't do anything non-postal like offering lines of insurance or savings accounts or logistics consulting. And why can't USPS ship beer and wine? Congressional prohibition.
So, what have Republicans achieved?
-Elimination of up to 200,000 union jobs
-Protection of competition to shippers, banks, insurers and other campaign-contribution industries
-With this no-Saturday thing, a $5 Billion loss of revenue that is not going to help the balance sheet any
-A hastening of the time when Republicans can start suggesting USPS be privatized
R13, 25,000 employees retired on 1/31 after taking a buyout. More will retire later this month.
We'll see how this goes through after Congress, the letter carrier unions and arbitrators get involved.
R15, there are millions of business matters which require receiving a letter in the U.S. mail.
Just because you do not have business that is conducted that way, and all you do is banking online and pay bills, it doesn't mean many in society lead the simple life which you lead.
Many people have extensive, more complicated lives which go way beyond just banking online and pay bills online.
For you to think that all or most people are exactly like you, R15, is ignorant, simple-minded, and asinine.
USPS is the single best run business organization that ever existed, and has been the target of republican and libertarian meddling for decades because it is proof positive that government can run things more efficiently than private business.
R22, You are very lucky that your local postal employees are so polite and competent. Wish my city, especially those in upper level management, had the same reputation. The reason Repubs advocate private over public business is because of the huge number of incompetents with no motivation to do a decent job.
R32 Sears and Kmart are next - they will be closed or go online only because Sears' value is ONLY in its real estate. Sears has not been a relevant retail brand for 30 years and its only chance for survival is to go online only - which is going back to its roots, anyway.
Those companies are in EXACTLY the same boat as the USPS in that their buildings are some of the most valuable assets in the whole joint.
[quote]The reason Repubs advocate private over public business is because of the huge number of incompetents with no motivation to do a decent job.
They could care less about the customer-service experience at the post office.
They work for private businesses and entire industries, finding new ways to extract more money from your pocket and rig the game even further against the average American citizen.
I'm with R39.
I know many smaller towns and regions have magnificent postal customer service. In many other places I've lived they've been great.
Unfortunately I now live in Chicago, ground zero for bad USPS employees. And I know, because I worked with some of them before at a call center. They told me how they'd work 3rd shift and sleep on mail bags.
To work at a window job at a Chicago post office, you HAVE to be morbidly obese. Precious would be too anorexic to work there. Once I had four people in line in front of me and waited for 45+ minutes because the slow, fat employees were all chatting/eating lunch/ordering lunch/talking about Pam's new man and oooh he FINE, etc. etc. etc.
R39, does anyone actually believe that private businesses provide better customer service? My guess is that anyone who believes that doesn't ever deal directly with customer service people but uses staff to avoid that task.
Many U.S. businesses seem to hire people for their surliness toward customers. It's even worse since so many companies have outsourced customer service to third world countries. Although foreign customer service people are generally more courteous, communications can be difficult.
I recently had a frustrating experience with a woman in Sri Lanka who could not understand the numbers for which she was asking.
With email, telephone, cellphones, automatic billpayer, they could probably cut delivery of first class mail to a few days a week. Everything else can be shipped by packaging.
THIS is an OUTRAGE. Postal workers come through my neighborhood, know my neighbors, hand deliver my stuff to them when I'm not around. UPS NEVER knocks, always runs and leaves, Fedex does the same. the USPS is THE ONLY WAY to have courier service in my opinion.
Over the past three years I've sold literally thousands of items on eBay & Amazon. I can honestly say USPS has NEVER--not once--lost one of my packages. That blows my mind! To watch such an efficient organization be targeted with forced failure by political sources is sickening.
There must be a dozen comments a month, maybe a dozen threads a month, where somebody complains about postal workers. It really isn't fair to gripe about how somebody else does his or work unless you have done it yourself or somebody you know really well explains what it is like.
Most people in retail know how hard it is to be polite to every single person all day long especially when you are tired and hungry, waiting for a break
Surely there are people who come here who work for the USPS or is partnered with someone who does. Why doesn't someone speak up about what it is like to work there, what the hours are, what the supervision and discipline are like, and what the union does for them.
It is the nation's second largest employer, so of course it has its fair share unfavorable workers. I've met them!
I'm a casual (temporary) employee and my father is a career employee. As a casual, I make $12/hour with no benefits, guaranteed hours or union representation. Thankfully, we're needed in my facility; I'm actually scheduled 6 days this week so I may hit overtime although I'm not supposed to work more than 40 hours/week. No, my tasks don't require that much mental effort, but they sure as hell are physically demanding. I push/pull/lift thousands of pounds of mail every night. I'm young and in decent shape, so I don't mind the minor aches for now. I just hope I don't get a serious injury, since I'm uninsured. I wouldn't want to do this (at least this position) for 30+ years, especially without decent insurance. Everyone above a certain age in my facility has a limp or shuffle from all the wear and tear.
I was raised with stories of idiot supervisors, but most of the ones I've encountered seem fair as long as you do your work at a decent pace and come back from breaks in a timely manner. One guy did yell and curse at me for an honest mistake. He later apologized. I try to avoid him because he's a drunk, loves to talk about his sexual exploits and I may be his type (I'm a female). I was almost fired this week because supervisors couldn't communicate properly and I was accused of not being were I was supposed to be. Interestingly enough, the next day, the same person seemed a bit friendlier after learning my dad works for the PO (someone who knows him probably told her).
Wow, that's a lot for less than two months of employment and I could probably go on. I've got to get some sleep because I work 12-8:30 am ET.