Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) is calling on Congress to act to make revisions to a bill that will stop the Postmaster General's plan for eliminating day-to-day home mail delivery in rural communities, including Dayton.
The bill Schumer is proposing changes to is S. 1789 21st Century Postal Service Act. This is the same bill that proposes the restructuring of post offices set forth by the United States Postal Service (USPS) and will close mail processing facilities, such as the one in Buffalo. Schumer's revisions are only targeting the door-to-door delivery of mail in rural communities however.
"Hundreds of thousands of upstate seniors and businesses rely on rural post offices and door-to-door delivery in every corner of the state," Schumer said in a statement.
If the new bill goes through, 53 post offices will be closed. Instead of mail being delivered to individual residences, central mail boxes will be placed in neighborhoods or at the end of a street. Residents would have to travel to these mail boxes in order to retrieve their mail. The system is similar to post office boxes at a post office, without having to travel as far. Schumer also supports a moratorium which will prohibit the Postmaster General from closing these post offices for a two-year period.
"We need to make major reforms to the postal service to protect the vital service it provides, but saving the post office while shutting down key post offices and moving delivery further from people's homes makes no sense at all. This legislation would put a two-year moratorium on closures, and ensure that the Post Office keeps delivering mail right to the mailbox or doorstep," Schumer said.
While Schumer wants to eliminate central mail box delivery for existing post offices, he is not trying to limit new central boxes. New apartment complexes where having one central mail box is logical,
Schumer is not trying to limit these developments with his amendments to the bill.
"We need to save where we can, but cutting out incredibly important post offices defeats the point when it comes to saving the postal service. These are common sense proposals that recognize that the USPS needs reform, but balances that need with the importance of our rural post offices and convenient delivery," Sen. Schumer said.
The bill will be voted on in the upcoming days. The direction of the bill will depend on how the voting goes, a representative from Schumer's office said.
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