Changes are coming to US Postal Service; no Saturday mail - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Changes are coming to US Postal Service; no Saturday mail delivery an option

John Potter John Potter
Ronald Borrello Ronald Borrello
Elena Seu Elena Seu
Laura Livingston Laura Livingston

By Holly Juscen – bio | email 

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Saturday delivery days could go away, post offices could close and layoffs could happen. These are just a few of the changes that may be in store for the US Postal Service. The agency is asking for congressional approval to help with its financial crisis.

Last year alone it lost nearly $4 billion. Blame it on the internet --- email and online banking have downsized mail volume.

"We need to reinvent, redefine and reinvigorate the value of mail to businesses and households," says the US Postmaster General, John Potter.

As Americans turn more and more from paper to electronic communications, the number of items handled by post offices fell from 213 billion in 2006 to 177 billion last year. Volume is expected to shrink to 150 billion by 2020.

To avoid rate hikes and layoffs, a five day a week delivery would be the best scenario because eliminating Saturday deliveries would save 3 billion dollars a year. Residents here in Hawaii say they would just have to adjust.

"Would it be hard for me to not get mail on a Saturday? No, but I don't think they should stop Saturday I think they should not delivery Wed. instead," say Robert Borrello a USPS customer.

Here in Hawaii, it's still unclear what the direct impact will be. Last year ten post office branches faced the possibility of closing their doors, but that could change now that the Saturday delivery may go away. No matter what, saving jobs is the highest priority.

The US Postmaster General will be asking Congress for the OK to move services to pharmacies and groceries stores, so that there will be more self service kiosks available to the public. If approved these changes would not go into affect until the middle of 2011.

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