Postal Services Announces Big Changes

By: Erica Rakow Email
By: Erica Rakow Email

Sending a letter from, say, Lynn Haven to the Beach could soon take one to two days longer. The reason? Cuts by the U.S. Postal Service.

The postal service is on the brink of bankruptcy and is estimating a forty-seven-percent drop in regular mail over the next decade. Postal officials announced a proposal to cut services Monday that includes the general mail facility in Panama City.

The postal service plans to close about 200 general mail facilities, like the one on Sherman Avenue. These facilities receive process and then send out letters and packages. If you mail a letter in Panama City, it usually arrives at it's destination within a day. But President of the Local American Postal Workers Union, Dee Carr, says under the new plan that would change.

"That would mean that all of tour one which processes the mail at night for the delivery the next day would be eliminated. All that mail would then be worked in Pensacola and would probably be worked maybe during the next day, could be worked 2 days later, could be worked 3 days later," said Carr.

The postal service has been considering changes at the general mail facility off Sherman Avenue for months. Postal workers staged a protest in September against the cuts but the postal service is losing billions of dollars to the internet.

"They’re choosing electronic bill payment. They’re choosing electronic communication via the internet and email, things like that," said VP of Network Operations, David Williams.

If the proposal passes, 28,000 postal workers will lose their jobs. Carr doesn't know how many of the 65 local workers will be effected. But the postal service wants to hear from the public before making any changes.

"They have to do a public forum first, get information from the public and then they will supposedly make their decision," said Carr.

That public input meeting is scheduled to take place December 20th at 7 p.m. at Gulf Coast State College.

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  • by william Location: Panama City, FL on Dec 6, 2011 at 10:06 AM
    Sure, no big deal to you, George? What about the elderly who depends on the USPS to get their medicines, or what about our local economy, in this day when every job counts? You need to be more concerned for others than uourself on this issue. The mail IS important to alot of businesses and people that you do not know. If this happens there will be adverse effects that will trickle down to folks everywhere!
    • reply
      by Marlene on Dec 6, 2011 at 12:50 PM in reply to william
      I used to work for FL Dept of Revenue. One of their many "benefits" required its workers to receive prescriptions by mail. As for closing more facilities: I always hear complaints about the price of postage going up, but can you drive from Lynn Haven to PC Beach for less than 45 cents? So if you must pay a bill due tomorrow, only other options (if available) is to pay by internet or phone (if those options are even available). They may include additional charges to use those options (like Panama City's website charging an extra fee to pay your water bill, or Gulf Power charging you to pay by phone). Oh, yeah, then there's the bank fees associated with online activities. I use USPS everyday for work, and the possible delays they are talking about would affect how quickly we get bills to our customers, and for how quickly our customer's payments reach us. Oh, sure, we could do e-mail billing, with every document scanned, right? NO--many companies still require ORIGINAL signed documents, and only pay by check. When something as big as the USPS cuts services, it will cost us ALL.
    • reply
      by beth on Dec 6, 2011 at 01:43 PM in reply to william
      Don't get your undies in a wad there William.
  • by Zack Location: Panama City on Dec 5, 2011 at 10:44 PM
    I've been calling USPS snail mail for years. Nothing new. Still have at least 5 more post offices to go locally. Why not close them too and have just one central facilitiy to handle mail normally handled by the other offices?
  • by George Location: Panama City on Dec 5, 2011 at 05:01 PM
    No big deal, I'm, used to outlandish delays from the USPS. I recently ordered an electronic part from Hong Kong. It took 3 days from placement of the order until it had cleared customs in N.Y. and it then took 11 days to get here from N.Y. They haven't had dependable 1 day local letter delivery in years. Do away with the USPS and turn mail delivery over to private enterprises. It'll be cheaper and faster.
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