12/20/2007 - A provision attached to the appropriations bill awaiting President Bush’s signature would indefinitely postpone most of the Postal Service consolidation plans still awaiting implementation.
The initial adjustment to the legislation came at the instigation of Rep. Jose Serrano (D-Bronx), who chairs the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Financial Services and General Government.
10/15/2007 - An APWU advertising campaign in southern Michigan got underway last week, urging the citizens of Flint and Detroit to speak out against the consolidation of mail-processing operations into a new facility in Pontiac. The campaign is designed to generate interest in community meetings Oct. 22 and 23, when the USPS will discuss Area Mail Processing studies for the two cities.
“The radio and TV ads will alert citizens to the danger of deteriorated mail service,” said APWU President William Burrus. “The USPS plans have been developed without any input from the American people. They are the result of efforts by big mailers to reduce their own postage costs at the expense of all others.” The Flint and Detroit consolidation studies are among nine ongoing nationwide.
06/25/2007 - An APWU-sponsored TV commercial that decried the negative effects of Postal Service consolidation plans has won a “Pollie Award” from the American Association of Political Consultants.
Broadcast in select cities in the last half of 2006, the 30-second TV commercial — running in conjunction with radio ads — informed citizens and community leaders about the Postal Service’s network realignment proposals.
05/03/2007 - The Postal Service has notified the APWU that it will implement plans to shift some mail-processing operations from the St. Petersburg (FL) Processing and Distribution Center to the Tampa P&DC. Citing declining mail volume at the St. Petersburg facility, postal management claims the move will result in “significant savings” for the USPS.
“After review we have decided that this consolidation is in the best interest of the Postal Service,” said management’s April 26, 2007, letter. The USPS notified the union in December 2005 [PDF] that it would conduct a feasibility study of the proposed consolidation.
04/25/2007 - The APWU has been notified that the consolidation of some mail-processing operations at the Twin Falls (ID) Customer Service Mail Processing Center into the Boise P&DC has been cancelled. On April 20, 2007, the USPS wrote, “After preliminary review, it has been determined not to pursue the consolidation of certain mail processing operations at the Twin Falls, ID CSMPC, at this time.” The Postal Service announced an Area Mail Processing Feasibility Survey in Twin Falls on Dec. 12, 2005, along with nine other studies.
03/23/2007 - As part of an ongoing effort to outsource postal work, the USPS recently outlined management’s continuing plans to eliminate Air Mail Centers across the country. Two letters to the APWU provide additional details about plans management announced over the summer.
In a letter dated March 14, 2007, the USPS notified the APWU that management will continue to consider outsourcing operations at 14 of 43 facilities management identified in July 2006. “This decision continues a disturbing trend of replacing good-paying union jobs with low-wage non-union workers,” APWU President William Burrus said.
02/12/2007 - The Postal Service has notified the APWU that it has cancelled nine more Area Mail Processing studies.
In a statement on Feb. 9, the Postal Service told the APWU that “it has been determined that there are currently no significant opportunities to improve efficiency or service through consolidation of mail processing operations” in: Carroll, IA; Glenwood Springs, CO; Hutchinson, KS; McCook, NE; Sheridan and Wheatland, WY; Fox Valley, IL; and Bryan and McAllen, TX.
01/29/2007 - The APWU won another battle in the fight against misguided “network realignment” plans when the USPS announced the end of a study aimed at consolidating mail processing operations in Yakima (WA) with those in Pasco, 85 miles away.
Saying that the proposed consolidation would not result in improved service or efficiency, the Postal Service announced on Jan. 22 that the Area Mail Processing study begun in December 2005 would not be completed. The central Washington city of Yakima will keep its mail processing operations and its postmark.
01/18/2007 - The U.S. Postal Service announced in early January that it was calling off the only Area Mail Processing studies in the states of Montana and North Carolina.
In a written statement on Jan. 5, the Postal Service said that it had dropped plans to move some North Carolina mail-processing operations from Kinston to Fayetteville, approximately 100 miles away. In Montana a week later, Sen. Max Baucus (D) announced that plans to move mail-processing from Helena, the state capital, to Great Falls had been abandoned.
10/23/2006 - A report by the USPS Office of the Inspector General concluded that the cost savings projected by the Postal Service for the consolidation of a California mail processing facility “may be significantly overstated, and the service impacts are not fully described.”
The report on the Area Mail Processing (AMP) plan for the Pasadena Processing and Distribution Center, dated Sept. 26, 2006, also found that “the approval process was not consistently followed, notifications to stakeholders were not issued in a timely manner, and the implementation of the AMP differed from the proposal” that postal managers had approved.