Thursday, July 03, 2014

9,166 post offices have cut hours in last 2 years; USPS offers buyouts to more than 3,000 postmasters

Over the last two years, 9,166 post offices have had their retail hours shortened, and 1,257 are now only open two hours a day, Federal Times reports in a story saying more than 3,000 postmasters will be offered buyouts and early retirement.

"But the Postal Service is also working on expanding its 'village post office' program, where the agency teams up with a local retailer to offer some postal services," Andy Medici reports. "By being located inside established businesses and other places consumers already frequent, VPOs offer Postal Service customers time-saving convenience, and in most cases, longer hours than regular Post Offices, U.S. Postal Service spokeswoman Darlene Casey told Medici.

In the buyout offer, "Postmasters will get up to $10,000 if they choose to resign or if they take an early or optional retirement option, according to documents emailed to employees by the Postal Service over the last few days," Medici reports. "Those who take the incentives will leave the Postal Service Sept. 30." Postmasters who don't take the incentives can apply for other jobs within the service, but could lose their jobs when it implements a "reduction in force" plan on Jan. 9, 2015.

"A postmaster who did not want to be identified for fear of retribution said there are not enough jobs available to accommodate all of the postmasters who want one," Medici writes. "She said the changes to the post offices that will follow the loss of the postmasters, such as shorter hours, will not help make the Postal Service financially viable in the long run." (Read more)

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