WASHINGTON - President Obama's Plan for Economic Growth and Deficit Reduction proposed a comprehensive reform package for the United States Postal Service (USPS) aimed to save the agency $20 billion over the next several years. One of these points is the proposal to cut operating costs by reducing mail delivery to five days.
In addition to the personnel that will be affected by this proposal, the USPS's vast fleet will also mostly likely be affected. As of August, USPS reported a total of 215,000 postal vehicles logging four million miles a day.
According to Sue Brennan, public relations representative for the USPS, the agency is currently studying possible closure of 252 mail processing facilities to remove excess capacity and 3,700 post offices for closure.
"All of these things could affect the number of vehicles we have. We will have a better idea in a few months when the studies are completed," Brennan wrote in an e-mail.
She added that the five-day delivery plan, if it receives Congressional approval, will take months to implement and "could also affect the number of vehicles we have."
The USPS estimated in June that a five-day delivery would yield a net annual reduction of $3.1 billion. It reported that Saturday is the week's lowest daily volume and the least disruptive day to eliminate mail delivery.
A May report from the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) found the USPS fleet of aging vehicles saw higher maintenance costs. It stated the USPS needed $5.8 billion to purchase 185,000 new fuel-efficient gasoline delivery vehicles, but financial constraints would make this difficult.
By Thi Dao