USPS Delays Closings
The United States Postal Service announced on Wednesday it has been instructed by Congress to delay the closure of hundreds of post offices and mail processing centers until May 15th as Congress continues to analyze possible remedies to the epic mounting losses being suffered by the USPS. Earlier this month, USPS officials indicated they were getting closer to closing facilities and lowering service standards to cut costs, but Congress decided to take another five months to investigate alternative solutions to the USPS dilemma.
“This isn’t a company that’s a local corner store that can do whatever it wants,” said U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown in a statement. “They need more flexibility from Congress to run this business better.” Senator Brown also mentioned some of the options being considered, including outsourcing services to local companies and doing away with the requirement that the USPS fund prepaid pensions for its workers.
The Postal Service has been losing money for many of years as the popularity of email and text messaging has greatly reduced the volume of mail handled by the company. Leaders of local mail carrier unions have been asking for changes in regulations governing the service for several years, including doing away with the prepaid pensions and an end to Saturday delivery. Union officials are confident that, given appropriate action by Congress, the USPS can continue as a viable business.