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No more Saturday mail delivery

Posted: Tuesday, Feb 19th, 2013

Flandreau city mail carrier Brian “Pedro” Johnson walks the streets delivering the mail. Johnson will soon have a few extra days off a month with no Saturday mail delivery starting in August.

In an effort to save over $2 billion annually, the United States Postal Service will no longer offer Saturday mail delivery starting in August.

The U.S. Postal Service has been struggling financially for some time now and has been trying to figure out a way to save some money but an unaccommodating Congress has been a major roadblock in their attempts to save money. They hope that their new decision to end Saturday mail will help save on some of those losses.

It does seem like a big issue for many people but market research done by postal service showed that seven in 10 Americans support the switch to five-day delivery.

Not all is lost on Saturdays however; the postal service will still deliver packages on Saturday. Parcel service has shown a 14% increase since 2010, giving the postal service a good reason to keep that service available. Also, your local Post Office will remain open during regular hours on Saturday and people who own a P.O. Box will still receive their mail on Saturdays.

The biggest concern for the postal service is for the elderly who rely on Saturday mail for correspondence and commerce. That hits home as Flandreau has many elderly citizens.

“We have seen a lot of support for the idea but our biggest issue will be with elderly and our rural route drivers,” said Laurie DeSmet, the postmaster at the Flandreau Post Office.

Unlike the city mail deliverers, the rural route drivers are paid for each stop that they make, therefore, taking a day of mail away, takes away an entire days worth of pay from them.

“I can also see where people who run a business or work from home would find no Saturday mail an issue,” said DeSmet. After all, people who work from home rely on the mail to receive product and invoices.

“The Postal Service is advancing an important new approach to delivery that reflects the strong growth of our package business and responds to the financial realities resulting from America’s changing mailing habits,” the postmaster general and CEO, Patrick R. Donahoe said in a statement prepared for announcement. “We developed this approach by working with our customers to understand their delivery needs and by identifying creative ways to generate significant cost savings.”

If you are interested in having a P.O Box, the Flandreau Post Office has about 25-30% of theirs available at a first-come-first-serve basis.

The new plan by the United States Postal Service will start Monday, August 5th, 2013.

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