In the midst of belt-tightening, the delivery service is promising to more effectively manage its business.
This article is based on corporate postings and accredited media reports. Linked information within this article is attributed to the following outlets: Wikipedia.com, GovExec.com, Facts.USPS.com, BestLifeOnline.com, and GovExec.com.
Wikipedia features a comprehensive overview of the United States Post Office (USPS): The United States Postal Service (USPS), also known as the Post Office, U.S. Mail, or Postal Service, is an independent agency of the executive branch of the United States federal government responsible for providing postal service in the United States, including its insular areas and associated states. It is one of the few government agencies explicitly authorized by the United States Constitution. The USPS, as of 2021, has 516,636 career employees and 136,531 non-career employees.
According to Facts.USPS.com: There are 31,247 Postal Service-managed retail Post Offices in the United States. The Postal Service recorded 749.1 million retail customer visits during 2021.
Though 2021 served as a record year for the USPS in terms of certain financial metrics, the agency has been challenged in other years by falling revenues that have impacted its modern performance. Today, in the era of Covid-19, high inflation and an unstable economy, the USPS has taken certain measures to turn the tide.
Let us explore further.
The Wikipedia page linked above further outlines the history of the agency: The USPS traces its roots to 1775 during the Second Continental Congress, when Benjamin Franklin was appointed the first postmaster general; he also served a similar position for the colonies of the Kingdom of Great Britain. The Post Office Departmentwas created in 1792 with the passage of the Postal Service Act. It was elevated to a cabinet-level department in 1872, and was transformed by the Postal Reorganization Act of 1970 into the United States Postal Service as an independent agency. Since the early 1980s, many direct tax subsidies to the USPS (with the exception of subsidies for costs associated with disabled and overseas voters) have been reduced or eliminated.
According to an archived May, 2022 article from GovExec.com, entitled “USPS Plans to Close More Facilities and Repurpose Those That Remain,” such belt-tightening was a necessity.
As excerpted from the article: The U.S. Postal Service is promising to do more with less, saying it can close facilities throughout the country while processing mail and packages more quickly. Postmaster General Louis DeJoy laid out some of the specifics for that plan at the National Postal Forum in Phoenix this week, saying he would significantly reduce the number of processing plants and delivery units in major metropolitan areas. He also vowed to close the annexes that have supported capacity next to other postal buildings, while also reopening dormant facilities and repurposing existing sites. The operational reforms, he said, would standardize the USPS network and allow for more precise and efficient mail sorting and delivery.
For a list of recent closures, see last month’s piece in BestLifeOnline.com, “USPS Is Suspending These Services, Effective Immediately,” which also discusses discontinuances of certain long-term offerings due to issues such as mail theft, ongoing delivery difficulties, employee assaults and acts of nature, in addition to strategic business decisions: The USPS was forced to suspend its service at several post offices in Northern California this week, eSeller365 reported. According to the e-commerce news outlet, the agency closed post offices in four Siskiyou County cities: Klamath River, Happy Camp, Scott Bar, and Seiad Valley. The closures are the result of the McKinney Fire, a massive wildfire that broke out in the Klamath National Forest near the border of California and Oregon on July 29, per CNN.
On August 26, GovExec.com published “USPS Lists Hundreds of Post Offices and Other Facilities Where It Will Consolidate Operations.” Such changes are to be effectuated from the duration of this month onward. The article states: More than 200 post offices and other U.S. Postal Service facilities are set to shed some of their operations as soon as this year as the mailing agency seeks to consolidate those functions at larger buildings, according to documents shared by management… The impacted sites are located in Georgia, New York, Texas, Florida, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Kansas, Maryland, Massachusetts, West Virginia, Kentucky, Washington, North Carolina, Indiana and Arkansas.
As far as business strategies, underperforming locations and logistical issues leading to business downturns will continue to be scrutinized.
Contrary to online rumors, the USPS will not be discontinued or defunded as an entity, though changes and closures will likely continue based on outside circumstances.
I will post updates here, on NewsBreak, as they happen.
Thank you for reading.