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President's Ponderings: USPS Elimination of Saturday Service

By Edward Luttrell - President's Ponderings Blog (11/30/10)

  DECEMBER 1, 2010 --

In my Annual Address to the Delegates of the 144th Annual National Grange Session I said the following

"The U.S. Postal Service has proposed to Congress that they be allowed to reduce service to their customers, the American public. While their request notes that they wish to eliminate Saturday service, the proposed changes will allow possible future reductions in service without congressional or administrative action.

"The National Grange has taken a strong stand in opposition to this proposed reduction in services in accordance with our policies that have been adopted over the course of many years. We have testified to postal regulatory officials how rural America will suffer disproportionately from the elimination of Saturday service. A 17% reduction in services for a 6% savings does not make sense at this time.

"Due to the gap between rural and urban America in access to broadband service, rural citizens and businesses still depend heavily upon service from their local post office. Essential products such as medicine and parts, civic participation through mailed ballots, and agriculture products such as chicks depend upon delivery by our Postal Service.

"We understand the challenges faced by the Postal Service and their financial condition. We encourage the Postal Service to explore all cost saving opportunities, but reduction of services is not an option we can support. We also call upon Congress to deal with the retirement early pay-out issue which has devastated the US Postal Service financially and forced it to entertain issues such as a reduction in services to customers."

The Postal Regulatory Commissions has said by year’s end they expect to issue their Advisory Opinion in Docket N2010-1 evaluating the Postal Service’s proposal to eliminate Saturday mail service to homes and businesses nationwide.

Once Congress gets the Commissions recommendation, we will keep our members informed on this important issue.


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