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Postal Service to cut Saturday mail to trim costs

Treasure Searcher

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#2
Curtailing Saturday delivery would save alot of fuel expense. Got to start somewhere.
 

Lt Dan

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phideaux

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Link not working, all I get is this 'about:blank' and page never loads for me, got any other source? I don't see this happening unless congress approves.
Link works for me.

As far as I'm concerned, I have zero need for the USPS. Hell, cut it to M-W-F only. The USPS is a barbarous relic, like buggy whip makers. The only "important" stuff I get via Snail Mail is Goobermint stuff: property tax notice, sewer bili, water bill, etc. (The latter two in my area are finally in the process of moving into the 21st century and going electronic;). Everything else I "need" is via email, or it can come UPS or FedEx.




Postal Service to cut Saturday mail to trim costs

Wednesday - 2/6/2013, 8:45am EST

Nancy Cordes, CBS News correspondent, on WTOP


PAULINE JELINEK
Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The U.S. Postal Service will stop delivering mail on Saturdays but continue to deliver packages six days a week under a plan aimed at saving about $2 billion annually, the financially struggling agency says.

In an announcement scheduled for later Wednesday, the service is expected to say the Saturday mail cutback would begin in August.

The move accentuates one of the agency's strong points -- package delivery has increased by 14 percent since 2010, officials say, while the delivery of letters and other mail has declined with the increasing use of email and other Internet services.

Under the new plan, mail would be delivered to homes and businesses only from Monday through Friday, but would still be delivered to post office boxes on Saturdays. Post offices now open on Saturdays would remain open on Saturdays.

Over the past several years, the Postal Service has advocated shifting to a five-day delivery schedule for mail and packages -- and it repeatedly but unsuccessfully appealed to Congress to approve the move. Though an independent agency, the service gets no tax dollars for its day-to-day operations but is subject to congressional control.

It was not immediately clear how the service could eliminate Saturday mail without congressional approval.

But the agency clearly thinks it has a majority of the American public on its side regarding the change.
Material prepared for the Wednesday press conference by Patrick R. Donahoe, postmaster general and CEO, says Postal Service market research and other research has indicated that nearly 7 in 10 Americans support the switch to five-day delivery as a way for the Postal Service to reduce costs.

"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," Donahoe said in a statement prepared for the 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."

The Postal Service is making the announcement Wednesday, more than six months before the switch, to give residential and business customers time to plan and adjust, the statement said.

"The American public understands the financial challenges of the Postal Service and supports these steps as a responsible and reasonable approach to improving our financial situation," Donahoe said. "The Postal Service has a responsibility to take the steps necessary to return to long-term financial stability and ensure the continued affordability of the U.S. Mail."

He said the change would mean a combination of employee reassignment and attrition and is expected to achieve cost savings of approximately $2 billion annually when fully implemented.

The agency in November reported an annual loss of a record $15.9 billion for the last budget year and forecast more red ink in 2013, capping a tumultuous year in which it was forced to default on billions in retiree health benefit prepayments to avert bankruptcy.

The financial losses for the fiscal year ending Sept. 30 were more than triple the $5.1 billion loss in the previous year. Having reached its borrowing limit, the mail agency is operating with little cash on hand.
The agency's biggest problem -- and the majority of the red ink in 2012 -- was not due to reduced mail flow but rather to mounting mandatory costs for future retiree health benefits, which made up $11.1 billion of the losses. Without that and other related labor expenses, the mail agency sustained an operating loss of $2.4 billion, lower than the previous year.

The health payments are a requirement imposed by Congress in 2006 that the post office set aside $55 billion in an account to cover future medical costs for retirees. The idea was to put $5.5 billion a year into the account for 10 years. That's $5.5 billion the post office doesn't have.

No other government agency is required to make such a payment for future medical benefits. Postal authorities wanted Congress to address the issue last year, but lawmakers finished their session without getting it done. So officials are moving ahead to accelerate their own plan for cost-cutting.

The Postal Service is in the midst of a major restructuring throughout its retail, delivery and mail processing operations. Since 2006, it has cut annual costs by about $15 billion, reduced the size of its career workforce by 193,000 or by 28 percent, and has consolidated more than 200 mail processing locations, officials say.

They say that while the change in the delivery schedule announced Wednesday is one of the actions needed to restore the financial health of the service, they still urgently need lawmakers to act. Officials say they continue to press for legislation that will give them greater flexibility to control costs and make new revenues.
 
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Lt Dan

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Lt Dan

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Link works for me.

As far as I'm concerned, I have zero need for the USPS. Hell, cut it to M-W-F only. The USPS is a barbarous relic, like buggy whip makers. The only "important" stuff I get via Snail Mail is Goobermint stuff: property tax notice, sewer bili, water bill, etc. (The latter two in my area are finally in the process of moving into the 21st century and going electronic;). Everything else I "need" is via email, or it can come UPS or FedEx.
I've noticed that most of what we get is junk, yet everyday, we watch and wait, like it is the highlight of the day, for when it arrives, then turn in disgust at the junk we receive. Ha! Winter is way too long.
 

Meetzos

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#10
Curtailing Saturday delivery would save alot of fuel expense. Got to start somewhere.
It's true they have to start somewhere, but they should start at the beaurcratic top where the over paid ,under worked managers sit and collect their salaries.
 

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#11
So I'm sure the 2 billion savings will come with another price hike in stamps .
Not to mention Americans will now gain another 10+ pounds a year probably by loosing the 1 additional day of exercise .The walk from the couch to the mail box is a killer workout .
 

phideaux

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#12
I've noticed that most of what we get is junk, yet everyday, we watch and wait, like it is the highlight of the day, for when it arrives, then turn in disgust at the junk we receive. Ha! Winter is way too long.
Yup. And bulk mail (junk) is highly subsidized, they get a huge discount from the first-class rate.
 

phideaux

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The USPS head honcho will be holding a live press conference at 10:00 AM ET today to explain.
 

Sport

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#14
I think that the problems faced by the USPS are more than union related. The main problem is that it is trying to be a business but it is not allowed to operate like a business. The gov puts in place a ridiculous set of operating rules on them which fosters all the problems that we see. They are facing the same problems as fanny and freddy.
 

Rusty Shackelford

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phideaux

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There is also the problem of the USPS being forced to "per pay" almost 75 years of health and pension payments in the next ten years. That would bankrupt any company.

http://redtape.nbcnews.com/_news/20...nt-accounting-behind-postal-service-woes?lite
True.

But if they were a private company, the same rules that apply to UPS and FedEx would apply to the them.

USPS would have to raise their prices and cut their costs to make it work. They have done neither.

Let'em fail.
 

Aurumag

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#17
The USPS is another poster child of union fail. The bail out cometh.
As my direct experience dictates, and as my whistleblowing demonstrated, the USPS is the poster child for "too many .gov employee expenses, including excessive management bonuses."

Without management, there would be no need for unions, and yet as I discovered, management and union leadership collude together in order to perpetuate the fantasy of a .gov job for life.

This is not so different from Social Security and other fed.gov job programs.
 

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#18
Since USPS is the only gov agency outlined in the constitution, keep it and get rid of all the others that are not starting with the Federal Reserve.
 

newmisty

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#19
Curtailing Saturday delivery would save alot of fuel expense. Got to start somewhere.
Yes but as was pointed out in another thread on the topic, the same amount of mail needs to be processed and delivered....now they have to fit the same amount of work in a shorter time frame. Not too easy on the handlers.
 

Rusty Shackelford

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True.

But if they were a private company, the same rules that apply to UPS and FedEx would apply to the them.

USPS would have to raise their prices and cut their costs to make it work. They have done neither.

Let'em fail.
Except that the same rules don't apply since USPS has another branch of .gov telling them if and when they could raise their rates and what can be cut (they are trying, but congress wont let them do what they need to do, so be sure to lay the blame where it really needs to go, not at the USPS) and FedEx and UPS dont have to pre fund benefits for employees that are not even born.

Damn, bet they add that little tid bit on page 2001 of Obamacare....:afraid:
 

Treasure Searcher

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#21
Yes but as was pointed out in another thread on the topic, the same amount of mail needs to be processed and delivered....now they have to fit the same amount of work in a shorter time frame. Not too easy on the handlers.
Mondays at the PO are sometimes the busiest. If a Monday is a holiday with no delivery, then Tuesday will be veeeery busy.
 

Cigarlover

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#22
I dont know if its the right thing or not but at least they are doing something to stop the bleeding.
 

Kingfisher

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#23
I've noticed that most of what we get is junk, yet everyday, we watch and wait, like it is the highlight of the day, for when it arrives, then turn in disgust at the junk we receive. Ha!
Yup. Same here. Decades of conditioning. I even order stuff to break up the monotony and if it comes Fedex or UPS, I am disappointed
 

Meetzos

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#24
This is a little dated , but what do you expect for goverment work.



http://deadtreeedition.blogspot.com/2010/10/usps-has-too-many-supervisors-and-too.html



Saturday, October 2, 2010

USPS Has Too Many Supervisors And Too Many Employees, Congressman Says

The U.S. Postal Service could cut its workforce by one-third and its supervisory ranks even more, a leading Republican Congressman indicated this week.

"The Post Office has 200,000 people who should be retiring," Rep. Darrell Issa said in a speech Wednesday to The Heritage Foundation. USPS had 568,301 employees at the end of August. "When I say retiring I mean we don’t need them. But let’s bear in mind it’s just not the guy at the post office; it’s the thousands of people who are doing maintenance at post offices that we don’t need to have so many of."

"And more importantly there’s a 1 to 7 ratio," the California Republican said. "For every person that delivers your mail, or packs your mail, or touches your mail -- for every 7 of them -- there’s one of them that is just, quote, a 'supervisor'. That’s a ratio that’s so unacceptable in the private sector."

As ranking Republican on the House Oversight & Government Reform Committee, the California Republican would probably chair the key Congressional panel overseeing the USPS if the GOP wins a majority in the November elections. His comments about the Postal Service start just after the 29-minute mark in this video of the speech.

"I’m going to take on postal reform if I’m lucky enough to be the chairman next year," Issa said.

Efforts to shrink the Postal Service's workforce through attrition and early-retirement incentives "simply have not resulted in the kind of change and transformation USPS needs to cover its costs," Issa wrote recently in an editorial for The Washington Times. He would like the USPS to be able to lay off unionized employees if they could be retrained for and fill other jobs in the federal government.
 

southfork

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#25
So all that being said, a 15 % reduction in service, will they be laying off 15% of their employees????????????
 

phideaux

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#26
They are still going to deliver packages on Saturday, so there isn't going to be all that much savings on fuel.
 

<SLV>

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#28
1. Both UPS and FedEx rely on the USPS to deliver most of their small packages to rural areas. Neither UPS or FedEx have a "universal service" guarantee like the USPS.
2. The USPS is not funded by a single dollar of tax money.
3. Cutting a day of mail delivery does not reduce the amount of work (mail) necessary (sorting, transporting, and delivering) -- this will make for LOOOOOOONG Mondays.
4. You (the mail recipient) ARE NOT THE CUSTOMER. The customer is the one PAYING for the service. The USPS doesn't care if you like the mail you receive. They do care immensely about pleasing their customers (the one paying for the service) by delivering accurately and promptly. To the USPS there is not such thing as "junk mail."
5. The USPS management has their hands tied by congress. They can not change the price of their services without congressional approval, and the cost of first class postage cannot go up any faster than the CPI (yeah, that's a real number).
6. GWB killed the USPS when he signed the law requiring them to over-fund a pension health care fund. They have had to sideline BILLIONS of dollars each year in the face of shrinking business and rising costs.

We are going to be watching a training video tomorrow morning that is supposed to explain to us how we are going to continue to deliver packages on Saturday. We can't really see how that is going to be cheaper than just delivering all of the mail.
 

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#29
Guys, you need to help out. They come by your house to dump all that junk mail. Why are they leaving empty handed?

I take all those credit card prepaid envelopes and put in a Ron Paul End the Fed card.

Any magazine etc blow in cards that are prepaid go in the box. Blank.

We need to make up the volume. Who better to pay than credit card companies and junk sellers?
 

phideaux

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#30
To the USPS there is not such thing as "junk mail."
USPS just calls it something different: "bulk mail".

Whatever you call it, it "qualifies" for a huge discount to 1st class rates, around 14 cents a piece. Aside from the fact that it is pre-sorted by zip code and easier to get into the system, it still needs to be sorted down to the individual household level before delivery.

More than half of all mail volume is junk. that's outrageous. The Founding Fathers didn't put the Post Office in the Constitution to deliver unsolicited advertising.




http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204612504576606743516301586.html
 

phideaux

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Guys, you need to help out. They come by your house to dump all that junk mail. Why are they leaving empty handed?

I take all those credit card prepaid envelopes and put in a Ron Paul End the Fed card.

Any magazine etc blow in cards that are prepaid go in the box. Blank.

We need to make up the volume. Who better to pay than credit card companies and junk sellers?
I do that with every prepaid return envelope I get, except for "friendly" organizations.
 

phideaux

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#33
Exactly. I can't school you phideaux.
And if it's somebody I really don't like, like an insurance company, I send them this notice, just in case a human being actually opens the envelope:

:4_1_72::4_1_72:

Attention: Legal Affairs Department

Your organization has illegally purchased or rented my name and address. I AM NOT FOR SALE!

Please IMMEDIATELY remove my name and address from your mailing list. If I do not receive written confirmation within 14 days that you have done so, your organization will be added to the list of defendants in a class-action lawsuit now being organized by privacy advocates.

Thank you for your prompt and positive attention to this matter.
 

Rusty Shackelford

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#34
Listened to a conservative radio show today and the caller I heard typifies the lack of knowledge of the USPS. He welcomed the cutting of Saturday delivery as it was projected to save 3-5 billion dollars that could then be used to repair bridges, roads and shore up SS.

Captain Obvious clear has no comprehension as to how USPS is funded. I figure that a huge portion of the poPulace is much the same.
 
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#35
Listened to a conservative radio show today and the caller I heard typifies the lack of knowledge of the USPS. He welcomed the cutting of Saturday delivery as it was projected to save 3-5 billion dollars that could then be used to repair bridges, roads and shore up SS.

Captain Obvious clear has no comprehension as to how USPS is funded. I figure that a huge portion of the poPulace is much the same.
Aren't they borrowing lots of money from the Treasury to keep operating? Yes, I understand the pension funding thing. They are operating in the red, regardless.
 

Rusty Shackelford

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#36
Isn't the Treasury just borrowing from the Fed, what they are loaning to USPS? Either way there is not any money "freed" up to spend on roads.
 

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#38
Post Office has not received tax payer money since the 1980s. The reason they are broke is in 2006 the lame duck Congress passed a law that they have to prepay their employee retirement and health accounts 75 years ahead. That would break any company. Essentially they are paying retirement and health care for employees that will not be born for 40-50 years.
 
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#39
Post Office has not received tax payer money since the 1980s. The reason they are broke is in 2006 the lame duck Congress passed a law that they have to prepay their employee retirement and health accounts 75 years ahead. That would break any company. Essentially they are paying retirement and health care for employees that will not be born for 40-50 years.
Where are they borrowing money, Bank of America, Wells Fargo?
 

phideaux

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#40
I'm sure someone more knowledgeable will correct me, but it is my understanding that the USPS is exempt from federal fuel taxes and local property taxes. That's a huge subsidy a private company doesn't get.