Devils Lake, Minot on the list
The U.S. Postal Service has announced that they will be closing mail processing centers in Devils Lake and Minot as part of their plan to close 252 such centers around the country.
Devils Lake will consolidate with Grand Forks at Grand Forks while MInot will consolidate with Bismarck at Bismarck. These consolidations will save the postal service a combined total of just over $3 million ($221,000 for Devils Lake and 2.8 million for Minot).
Postal officials have said that the process will not be done all at once, but in stages. Opponents say that the closing of the processing centers will kill one day delivery in North Dakota.
Residents in Rugby and Pierce County are located right between the two processng centers which are closing. At last count, Rugby and Wolford were not on the list of post office closings which had been announced last fall.
It can’t be done before May 15 as that is when the moratorium on closings which the postal service announced in December, 2011 will officially end. The postal service announced the moratorium Dec, 13 as a result of pressure put on by U.S. senators for the postal service to further study the issue of the closings.
The reason the postal service has given for the closings is that they are losing millions every year. The Postal Regulator Commission said they can save $6.5 billion per year. Their goal is to reduce by $20 million in financial operations by 2015.
Although a government agency, the U.S. Postal Service does not receive any tax dollars for its operating expenses, according to the website. Post offices sell stamps, products, and services to pay expenses.
“The decision to consolidate mail processing facilities recognizes the urgent need to reduce the size of the national mail processing network to eliminate costly underutilized infrastructure,” said Chief Operating Officer Megan Brennan. “Consolidating operations is necessary if the Postal Service is to remain viable to provide mail service to the nation.”
In January the North Dakota Newspaper Association collected 4,000 signatures of state residents asking for timely mail delivery. The Minot Daily News achieved the highest number of signatures at 508. The Devils Lake Journal also collected 278 signatures. The Pierce County Tribune submitted 37 signatures. All 4,000 were sent on to the U.S. Postal Service.
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