Post Office Closing 223 Processing Centers
35K jobs at stake, delivery will slow
By Rob Quinn, Newser Staff
Posted Feb 23, 2012 11:43 PM CST
Updated Feb 24, 2012 3:58 AM CST
This center in Springfield, Illinois is one of the 223 to be closed or consolidated.   (AP Photo/Seth Perlman)

(Newser) – The US Postal Service is closing or consolidating almost half of its mail processing centers nationwide as part of a $15 billion cost-cutting plan. Some 223 centers will go, in a move that puts 35,000 jobs at risk and will slow down first-class delivery, AP reports. The agency, which plans to start closing centers in mid-May, will try to minimize job losses by shifting workers to other roles, and even other states if necessary, according to officials.

"This is an important part of the network consolidation," Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe tells CNN. "We know how to move people and find landing spots." The agency—which is seeking to hike stamp prices 5 cents—says the cuts are necessary because of declining mail volume. But some lawmakers say the move is counterproductive. "Slowing down mail delivery service will result in less business and less revenue, and will bring about a death spiral for this institution," warns Sen. Bernie Sanders, an independent from Vermont who is seeking to prevent cuts to first-class delivery.

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M Kline
Feb 28, 2012 10:26 AM CST
Sad to see the system dismantled...
Feb 24, 2012 12:01 PM CST
Go to any post office or postal store in the country and you will see plenty of people using it. It is an incredible bargain and a credit to our country that we have such a huge system in place for sending mail. Many countries, third world countries, do not have reliable mail service. I guess that's where we're headed.
Feb 24, 2012 10:09 AM CST
There are two ways to conquer and enslave a nation. One is by sword, the other is by debt. John Adams 1826