Waite Park mail processing center fate still undecided as Postal Service unveil cuts

Waite Park mail processing center fate still undecided as Postal Service unveil cuts Click to Enlarge Photo:

Dec 6, 2011 at 9:12 am

WAITE PARK, Minn. (KNSI) - The future of the Waite Park mail processing center remained undecided Monday as the U.S. Postal Service announced plans for massive agency cutbacks and reduced services.

Under the plans released Monday, first-class U.S. mail will slow even more by next spring under plans by the cash-strapped U.S. Postal Service to eliminate more than 250 processing centers.

Four Minnesota centers remain targeted for possible closure, including the Waite Park facility at 10th Avenue South. The other facilities that could be shuttered are in Bemidji, Duluth, Rochester and Mankato.

The decision on facility closings is not yet final, Regional Postal Service spokesman Pete Nowacki said.
Nowacki said a public meeting would be held later this month to give local residents to discuss the possible Waite Park closure. A date and time for that meeting have not yet been set.

A final decision on the fate of the Waite Park center is expected by February, Nowacki said.

A study completed last month concluded sorting operations from the Bemidji facility should be moved to St. Cloud by next summer. Now, Nowacki said a closer look at resources and service needs will be done to determine whether all of those operations should remain in St. Cloud or be moved to Minneapolis.
Nearly 30,000 workers nationwide would be laid off, too, as the post office struggles to respond to a shift to online communication and bill payments.

The cuts are part of $3 billion in reductions aimed at helping the agency avert bankruptcy next year. They would virtually eliminate the chance for stamped letters to arrive the next day, a change in first-class delivery standards that have been in place since 1971.

The agency already has announced a 1-cent increase in first-class mail to 45 cents beginning Jan. 22.

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