Postal Cuts Could Slow Mail Delivery

USPS announces cuts to ward off bankruptcy

By Diane Znamierowski and Stefan Holt
|  Monday, Dec 5, 2011  |  Updated 8:35 AM CDT
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Postal Cuts Could Slow Mail Delivery

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While major cuts to first-class mail are expected to save the U.S. Postal Service money, the move could majorly slow down delivery.

A first-class stamp, which currently takes a day or two to reach its destination, could take two to three days after the cuts. The changes would go into effect in March.

Part of the reason for the slowdown would be less manpower. The U.S. Postal Service plans to close nearly half of all mail processing centers across the country this spring.

In addition to closing about 3,700 local post offices, roughly 100,000 postal employees could be cut as well. The move would save the Postal Service up to $6.5 billion a year, the service says.

In a recent interview, Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe said the agency has to act now while waiting for Congress to grant it authority to reduce delivery to five days a week, raise stamp prices and reduce health care and other labor costs. 

Donahoe has said the agency must make cuts of $20 billion by 2015 to be profitable.

Not only is the USPS slowing down first-class mail, but the agency also plans to charge more. Beginning in January, expect to pay a penny more for first-class stamps.

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