US Postal Service to slow some mail deliveries in October

U.S.

The United States Postal Service logo is seen on a mailbox outside a post office in Los Angeles, California, August 17, 2020. – The United States Postal Service is popularly known for delivering mail despite snow, rain or heat, but it faces a new foe in President Donald Trump. Ahead of the November 3 elections in which millions of voters are expected to cast ballots by mail due to the coronavirus, Trump has leveled an unprecedented attack at the USPS, opposing efforts to give the cash-strapped agency more money as part of a big new virus-related stimulus package, even as changes there have caused delays in mail delivery. (Photo by Robyn Beck / AFP) (Photo by ROBYN BECK/AFP via Getty Images)

(NewsNation Now) — The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) on Friday finalized a plan to slow down some first-class mail deliveries starting Oct. 1 as part of efforts to cut red ink.

The plan, proposed by Postmaster General Louis DeJoy in March, will revise the existing one-to three-day service standards to one to five days. USPS said that 61% of first-class mail would remain at its current standard.

The federal agency said delivery standards would be slower for about 7% of periodicals.

The “addition of one or two days to current service standards for first-class mail and periodicals would enable the Postal Service to convey a greater volume of mail within the contiguous United States by surface transportation,” the agency said in a notice published in the Federal Register.

DeJoy said some of the changes may be uncomfortable but assures that it is committed to delivering to “every address in the nation, six days a week, and strives for financial sustainability.”

USPS says current standards require it “to rely heavily on air transportation, using air cargo transportation carriers and commercial passenger air carriers,” which many times cause delays due to weather, air traffic and air traffic control ground stops. 

DeJoy predicted in March that the “Delivering for America” plan would cut about $160 billion of the predicted losses over the next decade.

Congress is considering a plan to provide USPS with $46 billion in financial relief over 10 years, including eliminating a requirement that USPS pre-fund retiree health benefits for 75 years.

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