BY ANTHONY O’REILLY AND HELEN KLEIN
The United States Postal Service (USPS) announced it has backed down on its plan to eliminate Saturday delivery after Congress barred the idea.
The USPS Board of Governors made the decision on Tuesday in a closed door meeting.
“Although disappointed with this congressional action, the board will follow the law and has directed the Postal Service to delay implementation of its new delivery schedule until legislation is passed that provides the Postal Service with the authority to implement a financially appropriate and responsible delivery schedule,” said a statement from the board.
The board’s plan was to keep stations open and continue package deliveries; only mail delivery would have been affected, beginning August 5. They estimated that the plan would save $2 billion. Last year, USPS lost close to $16 billion.
“It is not possible for the Postal Service to meet significant cost reduction goals without changing its delivery schedule,” the board added.
However, congressmembers from across the city joined together in a protest spearheaded by freshman Queens Congressmember Grace Meng. The protest resulted in a letter to Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe. The letter was signed by dozens of city reps — including all the Brooklyn reps: Congressmembers Michael Grimm, Hakeem Jeffries, Jerrold Nadler, Yvette Clarke, Nydia Velazquez and Carolyn Maloney.
The letter insisted that ending Saturday delivery could hurt businesses and result in “further financial hardship” for postal workers, businessowners, and even the USPS, should companies switch to private delivery services.