Union loses bid to block mail processing plant consolidations


In case anyone missed it, (this particular FedLine correspondent was away when the decision came down), the Postal Regulatory Commission last week officially dismissed a union complaint seeking to block the U.S. Postal Service’s downsizing of its mail processing plant network.

The complaint, filed in June by the American Postal Workers Union, argued in part  that the Postal Service had first to receive an advisory opinion from the PRC on the proposed changes to first-class mail delivery standards that are accompanying the downsizing. But while that approach is “preferred,” it’s not mandatory, the five-member commission ruled in its 16-page order.

The decision is no surprise, given that the commission had earlier declined to issue an emergency  injunction to stop the first round of 46 plant consolidations from going forward. The Postal Service wrapped up that round last month and–as previously announced-is taking a breather for the rest of the year “to allow employees to fully focus on the processing and delivery of election mail and the volumes of mail expected during the busy fall and holiday mailing seasons,” a spokeswoman said in an email.

In all, the Postal Service plans to close or consolidate roughly half of its plants during the next two years. The agency currently has 433 processing facilities.



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  2. That the union would attempt yet again to avoid the inevitable is to be expected. No way are they going to let this gravy train become a lean mean efficient machine.

    Forget the fact first class mail has declined over 50% in the last 20 years as electronic transactions continue to be the medium in which information is exchanged.

    The USPS biggest customer the Social Security Administration will next year not even deliver social security checks to the remaining recipients who do not have bank accounts for direct deposit.

    Most of us Americans receive nothing but junk mail 6 days a week. The USPS is a dinosaur that must be downsized and privatized. Unions are just trying to preserve as much of a failing government subsidized legacy of changing times as they can.

  3. In response to Andre Leonard: If USPS is a dinosaur then so are FedEx and UPS. In case you weren’t aware of it, USPS delivers parcels for them every day due to our delivery system which goes to every house free of charge. For them to do the same they would need to charge such a high premium for gas and out of delivery area surcharges that no one could afford them. USPS delivers to places they don’t or can’t.
    Yes, first class volume has declined, but our own parcel volume has increased as well as Standard Mail. What you call “junk mail” is a cost effective way for many small and large businesses to get their message out. I’m more apt to read a catalog or a one sheet advertisement then I am to watch a commercial on TV or listen to it on the radio. As for internet advertisements, I completely ignore them.
    Also, don’t wish for privatization, with it there are no standards and any correspondence would not be protected. Right now, as it stands if someone steals even a piece of “junk mail” or a package out of your mailbox, it is a Federal offense. It someone takes an envelope or package left by any other delivery service, depending on the state you live in and the value of the item it would only be misdemeanor or possibly a felony.
    And by the way, the United States Postal Service is not subsidized by the Federal Government. On the contrary, it is a Federal Agency that uses the revenue from its own products and services to fund itself. USPS DOES NOT US TAX DOLLARS. It is in fact the other way around, USPS has been a cash cow for the Federal Government for far too many years. Yes, change needs to happen, but before you express your opinions you may want to take a closer look at the facts.

  4. Wow this person is a GENESIS! Let’s do the 99% consolidations on the House first. There is no economist that is a political pawn for special interests there, hence the buying of the house members. How could there be. The vicious persons there, AKA as Representatives, have no idea that they are hurting people’s first class amendment rights.

  5. I hope this doesn’t happen to the many services including the Postal Service we need, want and rely on.

    Gordon Lightfoot Wreck Of The Edmund Fitzgerald
    Wreck Of The U.S. Postal Service

    Our Postal Service was founded in 1775 with Benjamin Franklin being our first Post Master.

    The Postal Service is in trouble because of a 2006- law that requires the Postal Service to pre-fund the cost of retiree’s benefits for the next 75 years in 10 years time.
    No other company or agency in America is required to do this.

    In June 2011 legislation was introduced which will be the Wisconsin of the Postal Service if it becomes law. It will dismantle collective bargaining and forbid payment of severance pay to retirement-eligible employees. And reduce delivery services and close plants and post offices.

    Another bill which would prevent the financial collapse of the USPS – without closing thousands of post offices, eliminating hundreds of mail processing facilities, delaying mail delivery, laying off 120,000 workers, cutting postal workers’ pay, or ending collective bargaining rights.

    We are in the fight of our lives but people have voted wrong for too long and done nothing to help preserve their jobs over the years. People tell me it doesn’t matter what we do as we are doomed anyway.

    Their mind is made up even before the studies are done.

    All we can do is say we went down trying to keep our Eagle from drowning to keep service for the American people and jobs and benefits for the workers.

    Many people will never give up until all services that help us including the Postal Service are bled and dead. Common sense is not in the makeup to improve the economy, only the rich get richer and the poor poorer.

    Private companies will not deliver to the rural areas or inner cities and the elderly will not get their medications.

    We will have a museum of our defunct Postal Service.

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