To save money, snail mail in US plans to go slower

December 6th, 2011 - 2:24 pm ICT by IANS  

Washington, Dec 6 (IANS) The US Postal Service (USPS), facing bankruptcy, announced Monday that it will move forward a proposal to slow mail delivery to help save more money.

The USPS will send a request to the Postal Regulatory Commission to let it relax delivery standards for first-class mail, including letters and bills, said David Williams, the agency’s vice president of network operations, in a statement.

Currently, the size of USPS network is dictated by the current overnight transit time in existing service standards. The agency is proposing moving First-Class Mail to a 2-3 day standard for contiguous US destinations, reported Xinhua.

“The proposed changes to service standards will allow for significant consolidation of the postal network in terms of facilities, processing equipment, vehicles and employee workforce and will generate projected net annual savings of approximately $2.1 billion,” said Williams.

This is part of the agency’s overall savings expected from the network optimization initiative, which is projected to save up to $3 billion by 2015.

Due to traditional mail volume shrinking and increasing competition from private sector, the USPS has been in challenging fiscal situation for several years.

The USPS said last month it posted a net loss of $5.1 billion for the 2011 fiscal year ending Sep 30, and might see a record loss of $14.1 billion in the 2012 fiscal year as mail volumes continue to drop.

The US Postal Service, a self-supporting government enterprise, is the only delivery service that reaches every address in the nation, 150 million residences, businesses and Post Office Boxes.

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