SPRINGFIELD, Ore. — Starting in August the U.S. Postal Service will deliver mail five days a week.
Under the new plan announced Wednesday by the postmaster, letters will be delivered to homes and businesses between Monday and Friday. Packages would still be delivered on Saturdays.
The postmaster general says the agency’s financial condition is urgent and the change will save about $2 billion a year.
“A typical large organization would have either cash on hand or quick borrowing ability, two months worth of cash to cover through operating costs. In October at one point this year, the postal service had less than four days of cash on hand. That’s a very scary situation,” said Patrick Donohoe, Postmaster General.
Congress hasn’t approved the change. But because the federal government is now operating under a temporary spending measure, the postmaster thinks the agency can make the change itself.
The proposed change wasn’t exactly new information and people say it didn’t come as a surprise.
“I think it’s the responsible thing to do. I think if they can save–I think it’s $2 billion–they should,” said Eugene resident Tamara miller.
“I’m very supportive of that. Anytime we can cut the spending of government, we’re better off,” said Eugene resident Dick Stokes.
But some folks were unhappy it’d even come to this, feeling a bit forced into acceptance.
“I think they get a little careless with money. I think there are ways they can cut back and it doesn’t have to be on the customer, but we just have to put up with it and accept it. There’s nothing we could do about it anyway,” said Janet Sweeney.
And while many worried about how much longer their snail mail could take, for some the concerns are about more than just the potential delay in service.
“It sucks. You know I do get mail on Saturdays. Like what I’m mailing off today I’m hoping they’ll get Saturday, but they’ll have to wait another weekend to get it,” said Ryan McPhail.
“I just don’t want to see any people lose work, lose money, you know, hurt their families,” said Lindly.
Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley released this statement about the cuts:
“The U.S. Postal Service is an essential part of the fabric of life in Oregon, especially for seniors, small businesses, and small towns. When the U.S. Senate passed a bipartisan bill to reform the postal service last year, I fought to make sure we preserved the important services Oregonians rely on. Unfortunately, the U.S. House ignored their responsibility and did not pass that bill, and now the crisis has only gotten worse. Stopping Saturday mail would be a mistake. It would cost jobs, cut services and hurt Oregon’s vote by mail system. Congress should quickly return to the bipartisan framework from last year. I will keep fighting to protect Oregon’s post offices and make sure Oregonians are getting the service they rely on from the U.S. Postal Service.”
The U.S. Postal Service says this is just one part of an overall plan to reduce costs and regain its financial footing in order to continue servicing the American people.