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Postal News Roundup

Union Head: 'Lack Of Proper Staffing' To Blame For Westchester Mail Woes

Armonk Daily Voice - “The president of the American Postal Workers Union is citing a lack of “proper” staffing at Westchester post offices for the recent rash of shoddy mail service that has been plaguing local residents. Greenburgh Town Supervisor Paul Feiner announced last week that after inquiring to U.S. Postal Service officials regarding the lack of delivery recently, he received an email from Patricia Irons, the Manager for Public Policy Planning and Analysis for U.S.P.S., who said the matter has been forwarded to the Inspector General. Greenburgh Town Supervisor Paul Feiner announced last week that after inquiring to U.S. Postal Service officials regarding the lack of delivery recently, he received an email from Patricia Irons, the Manager for Public Policy Planning and Analysis for U.S.P.S., who said the matter has been forwarded to the Inspector General…On Thursday, Feiner shared a response from Mark Dimondstein, the President of the American Postal Workers Union - who grew up in Hastings-on-Hudson - who said he shares the community’s concerns regarding “poor, and seemingly ever deteriorating, mail services.”’

Postmaster Removed for Unacceptable Conduct

Fedsmith.com - “It took the postal service more than 600 days to investigate and take removal action stemming from the allegations against an 18-year employee who served as Postmaster at West Linn, Oregon. On appeal both the Merit Systems Protection Board and the federal appeals court sustained his removal… According to the court’s accounting of the facts in the case, Canarios joined the Post Office in 1988. By 2016 he was Postmaster, Executive and Administrative Grade 21 and the highest manager at the West Linn facility. Following several allegations by his coworkers, USPS put Canarios on administrative leave and launched an investigation. It took more than 600 days for the investigation to wrap up (no indication in the court’s opinion whether Canarios was on paid leave all this time). By the time the dust settled, the agency charged Canarios with making “disparaging and inappropriate comments and displayed inappropriate behavior—vulgar, sexual comments and conduct—toward employees and customers [particularly females]…”  and proposed his removal.”

In Joint Filing, More than 50 Mail Industry Leaders Urge Regulators to Reconsider Dramatic Postal Rate Increases

Postal-reporter.com - “Today, an unprecedented coalition of more than 50 leading associations, companies, nonprofits, magazines, newspapers and other stakeholders joined forces as the American Mail Alliance to advocate for a common sense approach to setting new postal rates, promoting the long-term health and success of the United States Postal Service (USPS), and opposing the radical postal rate increases proposed by the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC), the independent regulatory agency tasked with USPS postage rate oversight. The American Mail Alliance represents the vast majority of mailers, by volume and revenue, in the $1.4 trillion mailing industry. The coalition has come together as the PRC takes the next step in its 10-year review of postage pricing. As part of that process, the PRC has proposed a dramatic increase in postage rates by as much as 40 percent over five years.”

Postal Service Testing Karsan Plug-in Hybrid Mail Truck

Trucks.com - “Karsan Otomotive's plug-in hybrid USPS mail truck prototype was spotted testing in the midwest. (Photo: Brian Williams/Trucks.com).”

Mnuchin Floats Rejoining Trans-Pacific Partnership, Trade Deal Trump Shelved

The New York Times - “More than a year after President Trump abruptly pulled out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, saying it was a bad deal for the United States, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Tuesday that the United States is discussing rejoining the multilateral trade agreement. Mr. Mnuchin, speaking at an investment summit meeting sponsored by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, said that renegotiating the trade agreement was “on the table” and that he had been in talks with other countries about what it would take for the United States to reverse course. Mr. Trump withdrew from the deal in January 2017, dooming President Barack Obama’s signature trade agreement and leaving the 11 other countries in the pact scrambling to renegotiate the deal on their own. But Mr. Trump appears to have found a renewed interest in an agreement that he once described as “a rape of our country.”’

Trump’s trade war will hurt everyone — the only question is how much

Vox - ‘"I don’t know anybody who thinks that trade wars are something you win." Historically, the United States has focused on staying out of trade wars. Not so under President Donald Trump, who last week announced plans to slap sweeping tariffs on steel and aluminum imports and asserted that trade wars are good and easy to win. (They are not.) The case the White House is making is that the United States are necessary to protect vulnerable American industries and ultimately their effects won’t be that big of a deal. But there’s actually plenty of cause for concern. “Everybody, all economies, will be adversely affected, the only question is how much,” said Michael Froman, who was the United States Trade Representative under the Obama administration. I spoke with Froman, currently a fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations who served in President Barack Obama’s cabinet from 2013 to 2017, about Trump’s Thursday proposal to put a 25 percent tariff on imports of steel and a 10 percent tariff on imports of aluminum. He that said the administration’s contention the tariffs are aimed at China are misguided and that Trump’s invocation of national security in its reasoning could open a “Pandora’s box” for other countries to do the same.”

U.S. Income Inequality Hits a Disturbing New Threshold

Bloomberg.com - “U.S. wage growth remains slow and uneven, with African-Americans and women still at a clear disadvantage while the wealthiest are accumulating more money than ever, a new analysis of census data shows. Median real wages grew only 0.2 percent over the past year, according to a report released Thursday by the Economic Policy Institute, a progressive think-tank. Wages for African-Americans declined in most wage brackets, while women with graduate degrees made less money than men with only college degrees.”

County politicians face the question of whether to fight for the return of home postal delivery

The Beacon Herald – Canada - “Is home postal delivery worth saving? That was the question Perth County councillors had to ask themselves at Thursday’s council meeting when Derek Richmond, the Canadian Union of Postal Workers’ (CUPW) Ontario region coordinator, asked them to support a letter to Carla Qualtrough, the federal minister of public services and procurement, requesting her consideration of several of the recommendations included in the standing committee report on its recently concluded review of Canada Post. “When CUPW first appeared before council in January of 2014, Canada Post had worked on a program which had planned for the removal of door-to-door delivery for all residences across Canada,” Richmond began. “Between then and 2015, and the federal election, 830,000 residences lost their home mail delivery. This was met with a storm of protests as almost 600 municipalities passed resolutions condemning those cuts.” Following the backlash, the new Liberal government launched a public consultation and review of Canada Post by the standing committee on government operations and estimates, ultimately resulting in the government announcing its vision for the renewal of Canada Post and its release of the standing committee’s Way Forward report on Jan. 24 of this year. Among the 45 recommendations included in the standing committee report, Richmond said the CUPW was pleased to learn that the ministry decided to terminate Canada Post’s program of converting door-to-door delivery to community mailboxes.”

Albuquerque postal clerk's secret talent takes him across the globe

KRQE News 13 - “An Albuquerque postal clerk has a secret talent that’s taking him across the world this summer. “I come in early in the morning at about 2 a.m. or 2:30 a.m., to help distribute parcels and case the mail,” said Martin Kroebel. Kroebel has been working for the United States Postal Service for more than a decade. He’s a clerk at the post office near Central and San Mateo. “People kept telling me that I have a good voice,” he says. That voice is a talent his co-workers know about, but not many customers do. Kroebel’s been singing since he was 13-years-old and is trained in classical music. Although he doesn’t serenade people who come into the post office, he enjoys posting ballads to social media. His singing has taken him all over the world, including a performance at Carnegie Hall. Soon, he’ll be taking a trip to Florence, Italy for the Grand Choral Series. Kroebel’s been invited by MidAmerica Productions, a company that specializes in putting together classical concerts, to sing with a group of people. “Yes, I’m a little nervous, yes ma’am,” he says. Sometimes the people you think are ordinary, have the most extraordinary secrets.”

Brother Kroebel is a member of the Albuquerque Local – check his video here.         

RIP Bobby O'Neill

Newport Buzz - “Robert L. O’Neill, 78, a proud native Newporter, passed away on Friday, March 2, 2018 surrounded by family, after a courageous battle with Pulmonary Fibrosis. He was the husband of Jeannette R. (Dupere) O’Neill. Born on December 20, 1939 in Newport, RI, he was the son of the late Robert L. and Jennie N. (Ripa) O’Neill… Bobby was a graduate of Rogers High School and attended Roger Williams College, where he met the love of his life. He worked at the US Postal Service for 31 years, where he was past president of the American Postal Workers Union local and state. After retirement he worked with his wife at the family deli Mrs. O’s Kitchen, Ash Mart and Memorial Funeral Home. He also served as vice-president of Island Cemetery… His funeral will be held on Friday, March 9, 2018 at 10:30AM from the funeral home, followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at 11:30AM, in St. Mary’s Church, Spring Street, Newport, RI. Burial will be in Island Cemetery, Warner Street, Newport At Bobby’s request, in lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his memory to the Newport St. Patrick’s Day Parade Committee, PO Box 1404, Newport RI, 02840 so that the parade may continue to bring as much joy to others as it did him.”

Brother O’Neill was a retired member of the Newport Local.