Concerns Over Saturday Mail Delivery Costs Hitting Local Levels


UPDATED: Sunday March 24, 2013 8:02 AM

Postal workers rallied downtown on Sunday to keep Saturday mail from stopping.

Local letter carriers said if Saturday mail delivery stops, a sixth of the postal service workforce will be cut.  In central Ohio, they said that means more than 200 jobs would be lost, including mail handlers, clerks, and letter carriers.

Currently, letter carriers deliver the U.S. mail six days a week, but Saturday's service may come to an end if the postmaster general's suggestion to save money goes through.

“We've lost $41 billion dollars since 2007. $32 billion of that is because of the prefunding,” said Todd Hornyak, Columbus Branch President of the National Association of Letter Carriers.

Hornyak said Congress requires the postal service to contribute approximately $5.5 billion per year to a pre-funded health care system. However, local letter carriers argue the money's not being spent wisely.

“The postmaster general says, if I cut Saturday delivery, I can save $2 billion dollars.  Well, the postal rate board said yeah, if you cut it out.  But you'll lose $7 billion when people turn to other services,” said Columbus letter carrier Yana Miller-Farney.

Miller-Farney said stopping Saturday mail delivery would greatly affect small businesses, the elderly, and those who live in rural areas who don't necessarily have access to post offices.

“It kind of bothered me a little bit because I'm used to it. I like getting mail. I realize it's a way for them to save money so, but if we have to, we have to I guess,” said Columbus resident Robert Heisler.

“I'm content with it and I think it's a way to cut cost, said Columbus resident Bud Savage.

Now, the decision is ultimately up to Congress, but local letter carriers 10TV spoke with believe there's another way out.

“To us, it's wrong to cut service when that's what you're known for.  That's our product is the service that we give,” said Miller-Farney.

As it stands now, in Washington, Saturday mail delivery will continue at least until the fall of this year.

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