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Postal News - August 2010

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OIG Says USPS Overfunded Its FERS Retirement Obligations By $6.8 Billion  |  



Postal Service's History of Seeking Five-Day Delivery to Cure Financial Woes



Top USPS Attorney Says They Are Two Sets Of Rules Governing Use Of Postal Equipment - Replace a broken USPS - Letter to the Editor of the Washington Times by Wayne L. Johnson, Commander, Navy Judge Advocate General's Corps (retired) |


Appeals Court Uphold Removal of Postal Manager For Falsifying Timecard


Board Of Governors Chairman Remarks On USPS Need To Act Like A Business    |


Arbitrator Limits Abusive Postal Supervisor’s Contact With Carriers   |Comments


USPS Attendance Control Crackdown 2010 - Letter sent out from Area VP to District Managers |


If There Is No Work For Postal Clerks, Why Are Supervisors, Carriers Doing It?

By Stephen Lysaght, President, APWU East Bay Area Local   |










August 31, 2010

"Murder By Proxy: How America Went Postal" To Be Shown At U.S. And International Film Festivals - Murder by Proxy: How America Went Postal is the first documentary to examine the phenomenon of workplace massacre through the lens of the growing socio-economic strains that have swept over this country—beginning in the Reagan era and extending to the present. In the face of an ever changing economy, the film follows the plight of one of America’s working class heroes’, Charlie Withers, a 39 yr. veteran letter carrier from Royal Oak, MI, the home of the films focused incident.|  


Former USPS Area Vice President Found Guilty Of Assaulting Postal Manager - Jerry D. Lane, the former USPS Vice President for the Capitol Metro Area, was found guilty on August 26, 2010 of assaulting Plant Manager and given a fine of $300.00. (Lane was arrested on June 2, 2010 according to court records)  In June of this year,  USPS Spokesman Gerald McKiernan said Lane "separated" from the Postal Service on June 3, but could not say whether he was fired or resigned, citing personnel policy and privacy concerns. |  


South Carolina Post Office Closed After Employees Report Inflamed Lungs

(Greenwood, South Carolina) A postal worker tells News Channel 7 says there has been an odor inside the post office on Cross Creek Blvd. for the past three weeks, but the odor has gotten worse over the past two weeks. The postal worker says after being in the building, people develop headaches, dizziness and some have even complained of numbness. The postal worker tells News Channel 7 that workers who have gone to the hospital, have been told by doctors that their lungs are inflamed. Video: Greenwood Postal Workers Speak Out  |  


Editorial: Mobile Sensors on Postal Trucks Revisited

NALC: How You Can Help Save Saturday Delivery

Saginaw postal workers set for 'informational picket'

Marketing Mail in a Competitive Market
Window Book Offers White Paper on Implementing Intelligent Mail Full-Service

USPS moving Dundee-area operations to Carpentersville

Man charged with stalking postal worker

Mother Teresa To Be Honored On U.S. Postage Stamp


August 30, 2010

Having Problems with Your Time and Attendance Records? The OIG Wants to Hear From You - Recent news stories have identified a few instances where Postal Service employees have had time deleted from electronic time card records. There have also been other time and attendance instances where managers inaccurately calculated employee work hours for out–of-schedule work. If you are a Postal Service employee and are experiencing similar problems or any other time and attendance issues at your work place, we would like to hear from you.   |  


Postmasters President: Delivery Unit Optimization Is Being Implemented At Break Neck Speed - Delivery Unit Optimization (DUO) is being implemented. There are many impacts with DUO; pay, Postmaster level and the future of some Post Offices are at stake. |  


Will FedEx Target Certain ‘Custom’ers for Rate Increases?

Will Federal Express begin targeting certain customers for custom rate increases above and beyond the general rate increase? Well, according to an industry expert, that is a distinct possibility. Margin improvement appears to be the standing marching orders from on high. Similar to UPS, FedEx no has its arms around its costs, our expert tells us, and is finally able to identify profit margins per account. Word has it that those customers performing below a certain level of profit expectation will see their rates “releveled.”   |  


Mail Trucking Business Owner Charged With Stealing Funds From USPS

Kidnapper of Memphis Mail Carrier Sentenced To 25 Years In Prison

Overview: National APWU Convention

The Recovery and the Post

Letter carrier lends a helping hand
Online Sellers: Beware the Shrinking Postage Label

Postal Service suffers as more business is conducted online

Busting myths about the postal service

Post office bustles behind the scenes


August 29, 2010

Derek McLoughlin continues working for troops overseas from the West Nyack post office

Oshkosh postal workers plan rally

US shoppers place trust in traditional channels like direct mail for communications


August 28, 2010

Postal Management Groups Ask OIG To Investigate USPS' Failure to Comply With Rules Of Pay For Performance Program - The National League of Postmasters and NAPUS have jointly asked USPS Inspector General David Williams to investigate the 2009 Pay For Performance final core requirement ratings and goals. According to the organizations the investigation is based on "the failure of USPS to comply with the administrative rules of the PFP."  |  


New Book Released By The Only Female Deputy Postmaster General

As deputy postmaster general, she served in the “No. 2 job in the U.S. Postal Service,”1 from 1985 until her retirement in 1987, “managing the world’s largest non-civilian workforce of 800,000 and a $32 billion budget.” In an inspiring memoir, MS. DEPUTY POSTMASTER GENERAL, author Jackie A. Strange shares with readers her remarkable achievements and how trusted leadership, courage, and innovations impacted the postal service. |  


Affordable Mail Alliance Reaches 1,000 Members

Ohio: Ex-Postmaster gets probation for embezzlement


August 27, 2010

Union Vows to Escalate Fight To Preserve Postal Service

APWU members vowed to escalate the fight against the Postal Service’s plan to eliminate Saturday mail delivery on the fourth day of the union’s 20th Biennial National Convention, unanimously approving a resolution to engage in “rallies, marches, and pickets” in concert with other unions and public interest organizations. The declaration also denounced the “forced relocation” of postal workers and other USPS attacks on employees.  |  


Third Company Owner Pleads Guilty To Bribing Postal Official In Exchange For Contracts - Ronald R. Bassak, and his construction company, Meccon, Inc. admitted in United States District Court  that he and his company paid a U.S. Postal Service contracting officer approximately $100,000 in bribes in order to secure contracts for his company. During the investigation, the contracting officer committed suicide at his Westerville home.  |  


Police Say Florida Postal Clerk Stole Cash From Sales

 A longtime clerk at the Palm City Post Office (Florida) was doing more than selling stamps, according to arrest reports. The Window Clerk was arrested on a charge of stealing $1,095, sheriff’s reports show.. After voiding transactions the clerk was opening her cash drawer by pressing a "no-sale" button. |  


Canada Post Innovations

PostalReporter reader: What would your readers think of the two innovations mentioned in this article? Canada Post adopted 5-day delivery many years ago. "Mailbox location in rural areas became an issue when the Canadian Union of Postal Workers negotiated contract carriers out of existence and brought the job in-house. CUPW has complained that rural delivery is ergonomically unsafe for lone drivers. As a result, many delivery vehicles now carry two people — one to drive and one to fill mailboxes."    |  


Editorial: Ending Saturday mail delivery saves money, makes sense

New Pitney Bowes Mail Presort Facility to Open in Jacksonville, Florida

1 Injured After Car Crashes Into Hopkinsville Post Office


August 26, 2010

Oklahoma City Mailman Attacked by Dog, Dog's Owner

USPS tries for more service with fewer offices

Rives Junction postal worker drives 1 million miles without accident

In Florida Primary, more voters voted by mail than in person


August 25, 2010

USPS Reports Net Loss Of $764 Million For the Month of July

The US Postal Service today filed its July 2010 (unaudited) preliminary financial report with the Postal Regulatory Commission. USPS reported a net income/loss of $764 million. The total Fiscal Year to Date loss is $6.1 billion. USPS July Preliminary Financials: Oh the Questions They Raise | Are the Postal Service's Earnings Forecast Too Optimistic?  |  


Postal officials gave varying accounts of ex-executive's perks

Newly released memos of extensive interviews conducted earlier this year by the U.S. Postal Service's office of inspector general with Postmaster John E. Potter and other executives provide a rare look into the operations in the top reaches of the Postal Service. Potter added that the Postal Service 'in general does a lot of contracting out, like in IT and programming and systems development.' Potter said he did not believe that the Postal Service employees could keep their programming skill-sets fresh enough to compete with the private sector contractors," the summary of his interview states. Concerning the so-called "deminimus use" policy governing the use of postal resources for personal activities, he said the policy refers to "limited use, like people taking calls from their family, or people working on your house. I don't know how or where to draw the line. In the past, you had to pay for personal long distance calls from USPS phones, but now there is a deminimus rule. Potter Knew of Bernstock's Sole-Source Contracts | No-bid contracts got 'short shrift' at Postal Service | Susan Brownell Interview on Bernstock Case (PDF) | Interview with PMG John Potter | Mary Anne Gibbons | Anthony Vegliante  |  


OSHA Proposes $191,000 In Fines Against USPS at Kansas Bulk Mail Center

An OSHA inspection revealed seven alleged repeat and 21 alleged serious violations of the Occupational Safety and Health Act. OSHA's inspection was initiated under its site-specific targeting program which targets employers with high injury and illness rates. "There is no excuse for the lack of attention to the work environment that resulted in a multitude of violations, including seven repeat violations," said Charles Adkins, OSHA's regional administrator in Kansas City, Mo.  |  


APWU Convention Delegates Reject Proposal To Increase Union Dues

- After lengthy debate, a proposal to raise dues by $3 per pay period failed. “I have said on a number of occasions that we have sufficient resources,” APWU President William Burrus said before the vote. “I ask that you defeat this resolution.” APWU 2010 Convention - Union Vows to Escalate Fight To Preserve Postal Service (PDF) | Videos|  Convention News  |  


Job Security Dominates Clerk Discussions At APWU Pre-Convention Conference - On Saturday, delegates discussed resolutions, many of which focused on  excessing. The relocation of employees in the craft has been a major point of contention between the Postal Service and the APWU. “There’s no question in my mind, the days of being comfortable in your job are over,” said Rob Strunk, Assistant Director of the Clerk Division. |  


APWU Delegates Take to the Streets: Save Saturday Service!
Burrus said that members must “tell America that we’re not fooled” by the USPS plan to close the mailbox on Saturday, and we must let the public know that they shouldn’t be fooled either  |  


Fight Against Subcontracting Takes Center Stage at APWU Motor Vehicle Services Pre-Convention - At the top of the agenda was discussion of the pilot program that established flexible work rules and flexible schedules as part of the union’s efforts to ward off subcontracting. “The Motor Vehicle Division is under attack,” said MVS Director Bob Pritchard, but the pilot program prevented 22 sites from being contracted out.   |  


Leaving the Mailstream: Verizon

Pitney Bowes Offers New Tabletop, Dual-Head Tabber System for U.S. Mailers

East Derry, NH Residents Protest Transfer Of Acting Postmaster

My Post Office Says It Won't Accept Packages From Other Zip Codes

Sentiment builds to replace Healdsburg post office

Woman gets probation after stealing from Contract Post Office

Comparing the USPS with Fed Ex

Assault charges filed in post office beating

GovDelivery and Zumbox To Offer Free Digital Postal Mail Delivery To Local, State and Federal Government


August 24, 2010

Top PRC Lawyer Has Bright Ideas for New Postal Revenues

Marketers brace for paper cost increase
APWU to rally against delivery cuts
Opinion: Hey Congress, Designate This
Detroit cop remains in critical condition after collision with mail truck


August 23, 2010

NC Postmaster: USPS Must Re-Evaluate Its Management Culture to Face Challenges Ahead - What these examples show is that the old aphorism that one measures to manage can easily become a culture of managing to the measure. I do not cite these examples to claim corruption or even incompetence. I do think they demonstrate a management culture that has become a prisoner of a deleterious institutional groupthink. If the Postal Service is to successfully face the challenges ahead then it must be willing to re-evaluate its culture.  |  


State of the Union Address ‘Our Union is Alive and Strong’

APWU - “The anemic hiring practices of the Postal Service,” coupled with the effects of automation, subcontracting, computerization, and worksharing have conspired to reduce our ranks, Burrus noted, but union commitment is strong. .  |  


Will the Post Office Be Stamped Out In 10 Years?

In its “Action Plan For The Future,” the USPS says the post office of 2020 should be able to “maintain current high levels of service and performance.” Here’s my prediction for the future — if they think the level of service we’re getting in 2010 is high, there won’t be a post office to complain about in 10 years.  If postal service wants more money, improve  |  


A Story About a Postal Story
Appeals Court Upholds Sentence of Postal Worker For Mail Theft
From Anthrax to Allium : Views from a New York Postal Facility's Green Roof

Why extending tax cuts for the wealthy could hurt USPS and the mailing industry

Would ending Saturday mail delivery hasten the decline of rural communities?

The Definition of the Postal Market


August 22, 2010

Oshkosh Postal Workers Fight To Keep Operation

This is not the first time the members of the American Postal Workers Union Local 178 have had to make the case to keep U.S. Postal Service functions and their 100 to 150 jobs in Oshkosh. In 2007, the union successfully defended the Oshkosh distribution hub's strong service, large processing volumes and efficiency to prevent outgoing mail consolidation into Green Bay's center.   |  


Lost in the mail: Wrong woman signs for $5,000 ring

..a retiree living in Panama City decided to send his oldest daughter a heirloom diamond cluster ring worth $5,000. The ring never made it to the daughter...a spokeswoman for the post office in Panama City said the package was signed for and delivered to a woman with a nose ring. There was also no printed name (included with the signature).. all packages had to have a signature and the printed name of the recipient. USPS sent the retiree $400 because the carrier who delivered the package failed to get the printed name of the signer.  |  


 ACLU Says Oregon Post Office Violated Protesters First Amendment Rights

 The attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union Foundation of Oregon (ACLU) served Ashland's Postmaster with a letter outlining their concern over an incident where protesters were barred from gathering on steps in front of the local post office. In so doing, the USPS violated the demonstrators’ rights to free speech and assembly protected by the First Amendment.  |  


Proctorville Post Office 'going green'

Wheeling Mail Runs on Time


August 21, 2010

Postal worker subject of theft investigation

Mail truck parked near gas leak catches fire in Los Altos Hills

Mail carrier struck by lightning in Missouri


August 20, 2010

OSHA Proposes $350,000 In Fines Against USPS At Portsmouth, NH Mail Processing Facility - OSHA's inspection, conducted in response to employee complaints, found untrained or inadequately trained employees at the Portsmouth distribution center performing troubleshooting and voltage testing on or near live electrical equipment and wiring that had not first been de-energized. The workers also lacked personal protective equipment and were not instructed on proper electrical lockout/tagout procedures.   |  


USPS Requests Former CFO Back Up Testimony On Behalf Of NALC

Former USPS CFO Michael Riley submitted testimony to PRC on behalf of NALC earlier this month. Former USPS Chief Financial Officer: Eliminating Saturday Delivery Is Not Necessary. Now USPS is requesting that Riley produced documents, analyses, data to support his assertions.|  


Post office's tote boxes would be a top seller

If the Postal Service really wanted to get serious about selling things (other than stamps), it should market those wire-reinforced plastic mail tote boxes. It's the best thing they've come up with this side of the Elvis stamp.  |  


Letter Carrier unharmed after USPS truck set on fire

The letter carrier escaped not injured. Investigators are trying to determine if the truck was parked over a broken gas main along La Barranca Road. The postal service told ABC7 there were fewer than 100 pieces of mail aboard the truck, and officials will be informing people who might have had letters or packages that were destroyed.  |  


Alaska letter carrier pleads guilty to theft
UPS Employee Pleads Guilty To Mail Theft
Marion OH Carrier Investigated For Stealing Mail


August 19, 2010

Why the Exigent Rate Case Should Not be Approved

The exigent rate case conducted in a vacuum brings us no closer to producing rates based on market realities and may hinder fixing a number of the serious flaws in the business model and regulatory framework that must be changed.   |  


Senator Mikulski Tours Easton Mail Facility
Is Direct Mail Really Dead?
Mail delivery disputes can be frustrating
APWU Local fights to keep jobs in Oshkosh
Mural returns to post office

Shifting landscapes: What's happening in the print industry
Western NY letter carrier accused of selling drugs

Drivers sue FedEx over contractor status

Lansing postal workers practice their bioterrorism attack response


August 18, 2010

Mailers: Postal Employees Over Compensation Costs USPS And Public Needless $Billions Annually - Affordable Mail Alliance comments submitted  to PRC: The total compensation of Postal Service employees—more than $80,000 per employee on average—is well above the amounts paid in the private sector for comparable work. According to the Postal Service’s own experts, this compensation premium is probably more than 30 percent. This inefficiency costs the Postal Service and the public $10 to 14 billion or more in needless costs annually.   |  



OIG Says USPS Overfunded Its FERS Retirement Obligations By $6.8 Billion

Consistent with other retiree benefit obligations, the Postal Service is being unfairly burdened for its share of the FERS pension obligation. The OPM projected a $6.8 billion surplus in the Postal Service’s FERS obligation at the end of FY 2009.  |  


USPS Processing Center In Dayton, OH Fined $225,000 For Safety Violations

OSHA’s inspection, which began in April 2010, found that the Postal Service failed to provide adequate electrical safety training, ensure that workers followed safety-related work practices while working on electrical equipment, provide workers with appropriate personal protective equipment while working on energized electrical equipment, address machine lockout procedures and hazards, and provide proper lockout/tagout training.  |  


What does Warren Buffett know about the future of the USPS?
Postal Service lays out plan to move two Stamford offices
Mail Collection Box Stolen in North Phoenix

Former Minto ND Postmaster sentenced for theft
Kentucky postal workers charged with mail theft
Postal Service lays out plan to move two Stamford offices


August 17, 2010

USPS: New Tool To Measure Service Delivery

With the new Service Delivery Calculator (SDC), the Postal Service will soon have more accurate and timely answers to this critical question. SDC is a tool USPS and its customers soon will use to more accurately document service commitments, standards and actual delivery dates for all domestic mail classes. USPS Seeks Reclassification of Standard Parcels  |  


Protest Rally Turns Violent at Post Office

Wiring May Have Triggered Healdsburg Post Office Fire
Editorial: Closing Bellvale PO is the right decision


August 16, 2010

OPM Study Finds Federal Workers Earn 22% Less Than Private Sector

A new OPM study finds that federal employees earn 22 percent less than their private sector counterparts doing similar jobs. Now, the study examined straight salary and didn't factor in benefits. OPM says there is no information to compare federal and non-federal benefits. The findings are based on data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. OPM Director John Berry ordered the study in June, following media reports that feds earn much more money than people in the private sector.   |  


APWU: Final COLA Under Current Contract Is $ZERO
In July, the Consumer Price Index (CPI-W) rose to 637.138, still well below the July 2008 index of 644.303 (upon which the last COLA increase was based). The CPI-W needed to rise above 644.303 before another COLA was due. After the final month of the six-month measuring period, the eighth and final COLA under the 2006 National Agreement and the Operating Services Agreement is zero.   |  


Newspaper Group To PRC: Reject Rate Increase But Approve Standard Mail Incentive Program Newspaper Association of America respectfully asks the Commission not to approve the proposed “exigent” rate changes, but to approve the proposed modification to the Standard Mail volume incentive extending eligibility to High-Density flats.  |  


Postal Service Products Available At Office Depot

The Postal Service and the office supplies retailer have partnered to make USPS shipping and mailing products available at 1,083 Office Depot stores. APWU Decides Not To Challenge USPS Pilot Program With Office Depot  |  


USPS Awards Siemens $80 Million Contract To Update PARS

 According to the notice: This is a non-competitive award to Siemens for enhancements to the Postal Automated Redirection System (PARS) to increase system performance read rates, error rates and processing functionality.  |  


Residents still hoping to rescue post office


August 15, 2010

Postal union official indicted on bribery charges

An official for the local American Postal Workers Union has been indicted in federal court in Washington on charges of bribing a government official to steer trucking business to his gas station and repair shop. In exchange for the government contracts, prosecutors said the postal worker handed the government official fast-food restaurant bags of cash, saying, "That's your apple pie." |  


Editorial: Does the Postal Service Really Want Early Retirements?

In recent VERAs the Postal Service issued FERS annuity estimates that omitted the employee’s FERS annuity supplement. The FERS annuity supplement is often DOUBLE the basic annuity amount. Was that to discourage early retirements so they can justify weakening the no-layoff clause in upcoming contract negotiations? (8/15) |  


Postal Service to conduct new study of mail processing operations in Zanesville, Ohio

Obtaining Post Office Boxes Just Got Easier

Oklahoma City mail delivery continues despite power outage

Fire guts Healdsburg Post Office

FYI From USPS: The percentage of bills paid electronically has increased from 17% in 2002 to 41% in 2009.


August 14, 2010

How About a Drug-Sniffing, Meter-Reading, Photo-Taking, Bug-Spraying Postal Service?

Pit bulls' owners are charged in attack on mailman

43-year Riverside mailman a throwback to different era

Transcript of 3rd Day of Testimony on Exigent Rate Case (PDF)

Prosecutor: Postal clerk charged with embezzlement was videotaped
Ex-postal employee admits drug theft


August 13, 2010

Postal Service strives to maintain a deep bench for executive jobs

In an interview with Government Executive, USPS Chief Human Resources Officer and Executive Vice President Anthony Vegliante said having a strong workforce succession planning process to identify employees to fill important leadership vacancies is the key to managing the agency's 500 executive and 40 officer positions. |  


Burrus: “Postal Workers Will Not Settle for Less”

“Potter’s not going to get five-day delivery,” Burrus said, referring to the Postmaster General. “We’ve been in that fight, we oppose it, and we’re going to beat him,” he said. Burrus pledged to fight the USPS proposal that if negotiations enter interest arbitration, the arbitrator should be required to consider the financial health of the Postal Service.  |  


Letter Carriers Union President Rolando Reelected

Rolando, who also is a vice president of the AFL-CIO, currently is leading the union's fight to block the Postal Service's proposal to end Saturday mail delivery.  He also has focused in recent years on the restructuring of delivery routes of letter carriers in a manner that protects their contractual rights as employees while allowing the Service flexibility to meet the financial challenges posed by the economic crisis and changing communications technology. NALC Convention Chronicle Day Three   |  


PRC to hold Briefing on $50 Billion Discrepancy Identified In Postal Service Pension Payments - The Postal Regulatory Commission invites press and interested parties to a briefing on the actuarial report of The Segal Company regarding calculation of U.S. Postal Service pension liability for former Post Office Department employees. Questions will be entertained following the briefing.    |  


eNAPUS: PRC Commands Center Stage While Congress In Recess
Ronald Reagan, The Civil War And Owney The Postal Dog To Be Featured in 2011 Stamps

Could a retail slowdown help mail advertising?
Customers urge Postal Service to go digital


August 12, 2010

National League Of Postmasters: USPS Must Fill More Than 3,000 Postmaster Vacancies More than 3,000 key postmaster management positions have not been filled by properly trained and experienced postmasters. Instead these positions have been filled by inexperienced and untrained personnel. These individuals work hard and act in good faith, but are just not as productive as a fully trained and experienced postmaster. Indeed some of the non-postmasters in charge of some Post Offices have not even been trained on window work. This failure to act is causing the Postal Service to waste millions of dollars each year in lost productivity.   |  


USPS Manager Can’t Say If Flats Strategy Is Achieving Hoped-For Savings

As many readers may recall, Frank Neri, is the former district manager for the USPS Philadelphia district. He was replaced in 2008 by Jim Gallagher, a veteran USPS manager, after news reports of excessive mail backlogs. Now Neri is now at  USPS Headquarters as Manager, Mail Processing Operations. In Neri's testimony to PRC he reportedly said: Neri said he does not know whether any of the programs or concepts that currently under focus by the Postal Service will lead to any real measurable savings.  |  


Arbitration Panel Rules USPS Violated Randolph-Sheppard Act At Chicago P & DC - According to the arbitration panel, the issues to be resolved were: (1) Whether the USPS cafeteria operations are exempt from the Act and whether the vending machines operated by a private vendor at the Chicago Processing and Distribution Center are in direct competition with the vending machines operated by the SLA’s blind vendor; (2) Whether the no-commission contracts let by USPS for cafeteria vending violated the Act, and what compensatory damages, if any are due the SLA; and (3) Whether the SLA may amend its complaint against USPS to address information which surfaced during settlement negotiations, namely, whether USPS violated the Act, its regulations, and the vending permits by closing Break Room A and removing the vending machines for 34 days, and what compensatory damages, if any, are due the SLA.    |  


Former Postal Employee Sentenced to 25 Months For Stealing Over $130,000 in Treasury Checks from Mail -  a former mail carrier with “USPS, was sentenced today to 25 months of incarceration and ordered to pay $134,416.27 in restitution for her role in a scheme to steal United States and District of Columbia treasury checks from the mail and cash them at local check cashing establishments using fake identification documents, U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr. announced.   |  


UPS Joins USPS to Enable Consumers To Return Packages via Home Mailbox UPS Returns Flexible Access utilizes the Postal Service's Parcel Return Service(R), combined with UPS's own drop-off locations and delivery network, to provide retailers' customers with increased convenience when returning items.   |  


Printers Head to D.C. to Urge Block of Postal Rate Hikes

Former Acting Postmaster Sentenced For Money Order Kiting Scheme

Congressman Lynch Opposed to Eliminating Saturday Delivery

USPS to Struggling Publications: Take a Hike

Tech: Offering Sensor Network Services Using the Postal Delivery Vehicle Fleet (PDF)  |  Slide Presentation (PDF)


August 11, 2010

APWU Policy: Boycott USPS “Voice Of The Employee Surveys”

In a letter to local presidents dated Aug. 6, 2010, APWU Director of Industrial Relations Greg Bell reminded everyone of the APWU’s long-standing policy, adopted by the National Executive Board, to boycott all employee surveys. The USPS recently notified the APWU of a new employee survey that they are conducting.  We do not believe that it is a coincidence that this survey is being conducted just as contract negotiations are about to begin.  |  


Why Does USPS Make Retiring Difficult When It Has So Many Excess Employees? Before the Postal Service is granted rate increases that require bending, if not breaking, the law that governs postal rates, postal executives need to explain why they are discouraging employees from retiring when they should be encouraging early retirement.  What is the Postal Service doing to reduce its excess employment levels? Nothing. Stephen J. Masse, vice president of finance and planning, told the PRC today that the Postal Service has no plans to offer early-retirement incentives and is waiting for attrition to reduce its employment levels.  |  


Summary of PRC hearing: Chairman Goldway Says USPS May Not Have Taken Full Advantage Of PAEA - PRC Chairman Goldway said that it appeared as if the USPS has not taken full advantage of all the possibilities afforded by PAEA. Also, "Employee-related costs still account for 80% of all postal costs. All reductions in career employees have been actualized via attrition. There are now no specific plans for voluntary separation incentives.  |  


USPS Seeks Supplier To Conduct All Non-Work Related Medical Exams

USPS is pursuing a National Agreement with a Supplier(s) that has or is capable of developing a comprehensive Medical Provider Organization for conducting all non-work related medical examinations for the USPS. Postal Service offices are located in each of the 50 states plus Puerto Rico.  Examinations and testing may be required in or around every city in the country. The medical examinations include but are not limited to: NRP, FMLA second and third opinions, return to work clearances.  |  


NY Congressman Calls on USPS to Take Immediate Action to Ensure PO Remains Open in Willow

Slow growth ahead for direct marketing, report says
West Virginia postmaster pleads guilty to embezzling nearly $20,000 from post office
Ex-Mail Carrier Lived Large Off False Disability Claim
Think outside the P.O. box: Postal Service should serve public’s need


August 10, 2010

Postal employee admits to massive mail theft

An overnight mail handler stole more than 11,000 packages over two years before he was caught by federal agents, 9Wants to Know has learned. Upon being observed and caught by USPS special agents in January 2010, Schmauder admitted to stealing about 50 packages two or three nights a week since January 2008. The postal service estimated losses at $283,913 but admitted there's no way to know how much Schmauder stole. |  


Philadelphia APWU President Responds to Letter to Editor

As President of the Philadelphia-area local of the American Postal Workers Union (which represents the sales and service associates with whom the public comes in contact with every day), I totally agree with columnist Stu Bykofsky when he said that Benjamin Franklin would be ashamed at what transpired during his recent encounter with the Post Office. But I don't think he'd be ashamed of the Post Office - he'd be ashamed of how management is running it now."  read original letter   |  


Senator Ted Stevens Was The “Father of FERS”

Mail carrier killed after being struck by oncoming car
Is the Postal Service facing "bankruptcy?"

Post offices to consolidate in Central New York 

Law snuffs out mailing smokes to deployed troops

Rally to be Held Wednesday for Downtown Tyler Post Office

Hubbard Woods post office to close


August 9, 2010

NALC Pledges Increased Letter Carriers Push to Retain Saturday Mail Delivery - Letter Carriers union President Fredric V. Rolando opened the 67th biennial convention of the National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC) today, pledging to continue to fight the U.S. Postal Service's "extremely unwise and dangerous plan" to discontinue Saturday mail delivery, while the union works directly with major corporations and postal customers to foster innovations and expansion of the government's nationwide delivery network. NALC Convention Chronicle Day Two (PDF) | NALC Convention Chronicle Day One   |  


Sen. Susan Collins Urges PRC to Reject USPS Rate Case Proposal

As the author of the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act of2006 (PAEA), which grants the Postal Service the limited authority to file an exigent rate case, I want to make the congressional intent regarding the provision completely unambiguous as the Postal Regulatory Commission considers the pending Postal Service request. Neither the language nor the legislative history of the PAEA authorizes the United States Postal Service to file an exigent rate case under the current circumstances.   |  


USPS History On Six-Day Mail Delivery

The Postal Historian at USPS Headquarters has put together a history of six-day mail delivery (updated in 2009). A few Seventh-Day Adventist communities like Loma Linda CA (with 14 city carrier routes) receive mail delivery on Sunday instead of Saturday.  |  


USPS To PRC: We Use Business Judgment To Determine Price Increases

This judgment was informed by knowledge of the industries that use these products, and our customers for these products. |  


Postal Service Can't Blame Mail Volume For Its Problems

In most news articles about the Postal Service's financial problems, the source of the crisis is usually credited to declining mail volumes. The truth is that mail volume in the April-June quarter was down just 1.7 percent. Over the last three years, in the middle of the deepest recession in a generation, mail volume has fallen an average of 7.6 percent per year. USPS Files Quarterly Report (PDF)|  


APWU: While Congress is on Recess in August, Urge Reps to Support Crucial Postal Bills - This crucial legislation is a vital step toward returning the USPS to solvency,” said APWU President William Burrus. The bill, introduced July 15 by Rep. Stephen Lynch (D-MA), would alter the methodology for allocating the Postal Service’s share of pension costs for employees whose careers spanned the former Post Office Department and the USPS. Under current law, the costs are disproportionately split between the two, to the disadvantage of the Postal Service.  |  


PRC Schedule For Three Public Hearings On USPS Rate Increase Request

Postal worker accused of stealing gift cards from mail

Standard Mail increase is fiscal Q3 bright spot for Postal Service
Should Internet retailers print catalogs?
NALC 67th Biennial Convention Starts This Week


August 8, 2010

How to save the US Postal Service

It's time to end the monopoly. Deregulation and privatization will greatly benefit all mail customers and ensure a prosperous future for the direct mail industry. The alternative is a slow death.   |  


Police units sniff out mail stuffed with illegal drugs

Torrington mail carrier bitten by pit bull

Security camera captures man taking package

Yosemite's piano man is also the postmaster


August 7, 2010
Postal Service seeks $4 billion waiver on upcoming retiree health fund payment - Just as it did last year, the U.S. Postal Service is asking Congress for a $4 billion break on a contribution due next month to its Retiree Health Benefits Fund. "We are in discussions with committee staff on how we can gain some relief this year as well," USPS spokesman Gerry McKiernan said today. While it's up to lawmakers to decide what to do, he said, "I think there's an understanding and appreciation of our situation. ... We're hopeful."  |  


OIG Audit on PostalOne! Outage


August 6, 2010

Department of Labor Files Motion To Consolidate USPS Electrical Safety Charges - The Department of Labor (DOL) is seeking to consolidate complaints regarding the Postal Service’s ongoing and systemic violations of safe electrical work practices, and has initiated settlement discussions with the Postal Service in an attempt to correct the hazards.  |  


Farmington's first woman postmaster takes office

Man angry with government sets mail cart on fire, police say

Experts say ending Saturday mail will harm small town America
Gunmen Target Post Offices In Atlanta


August 5, 2010

USPS New Delivery Unit Optimization Initiative To Streamline Post Office Operations - The relocation of carriers to nearby cities is called “Delivery Unit Optimization” . This will cause affected carriers and some clerks to be excessed. Some clerk and supervisor positions will be abolished. The residual clerk work in the losing office could also be contracted out to a Contract Postal Unit or Community Post Office. Update: Chart of proposed savings for each district  |  


Postal Service Ends Third Quarter With $3.5 Billion Loss

The net loss in the quarter ended June 30 widened from a year-earlier $2.4 billion. An $800 million adjustment to workers compensation liabilities accounted for most of the difference. Work hours were reduced by 63 million in the first three quarters of fiscal 2010, or 6.6 percent compared to the first three quarters of 2009. That is the equivalent of about 36,000 full-time employees.. Mail volume dropped 1.7 percent, the smallest quarterly decrease in three years. USPS CFO Presentation on FY Quarter 3 Financials USPS may be unable to make payment into retiree health fund | Why are USPS finances worse than expected?   (8/05) |  


Syracuse, NY: Postal Service considering consolidating letter carriers to neighboring Cities - the Postal Service is considering consolidating some of its services by having its letter carriers report to post offices in neighboring municipalities. This will help consolidate transportation and handling. USPS spokesperson said this is one of the institution’s way of looking for “for innovative and creative ways to save money."  |  


Mailers Group Says USPS Is Misleading Public About Its Finances

The Affordable Mail Alliance today responded to the United States Postal Services' earning report. The report contends that the USPS will not have the capital to continue operations into FY 2011. This claim is false.  |


USPS Explains Difference in Shipping Process For Gamefly and Netflix DVDs

The testimony of the US Postal Service employees can be summarized:•Gamefly has chosen to use an insert which requires more expensive postage.•Gamefly envelopes are not branded and are hard to manually cull, unlike the bright red Netflix mailers.•Netflix picks up the mail from 130 different locations and delivers it to 58 shipping centers to cut down on machine processing which could damage DVD mailers.•By removing Netflix mailers before processing the US Postal service saves money: less mail is machine processed and fewer jams occur because of DVDs.   (8/05) |  


Cyclists Say Widespread d Cheating Went On As Part of USPS Team

Federal prosecutors have intensified their criminal investigation of the cyclist Lance Armstrong since the end of the Tour de France last month. They questioned many of his former associates, including cyclists who have supported and detailed claims that Armstrong and his former United States Postal Service team participated in systematic doping, according to a cyclist who has been interviewed and two others privy to the inquiry.  |  


PRC Thanks Public For Comments On USPS Proposal To End Saturday Delivery

What effect is the U.S. Postal Service's upcoming rate hike likely to have on business?

Postal official explains decision to reduce downtown hours

Former letter carrier and accused pipe bomber to represent himself
Borough mail carrier reflects on 40 years

NY postmaster demands mail box move- PM says he has authority to order move, but can't reveal source?


August 4, 2010

PRC Is Taking Affordable Mail Alliance’s Request To Dismiss Rate Case Under Advisement - Given the need for further investigation of these factual allegations and the absence of a deadline for action on the Motion, the Commission is taking the Motion under advisement and will rule on the Motion at an appropriate time.   |  


OIG: USPS Takes Average Of 2.2 Yrs. To Process Employees Ideas Instead of 7 Days - The eIDEAS program is a web-based application that allows Postal Service employees to submit ideas online or at one of the kiosks located in processing plants. The Postal Service encourages employees to contribute constructive ideas to improve customer satisfaction, generate revenue, increase productivity, and improve competitiveness. "When an idea is approved, management can award noncash and cash awards up to $10,000. The complainant and surveyed employees expressed concern about management’s commitment to the eIDEAS program." |  


USPS: Human Resource Innovation Savings Exceed $150 Million Annually

Seattle letter carriers to picket Thursday

GAO says Social Security wrongly paid disability to 1500 federal workers

Former postmaster released from hospital, charged with murdering his wife

APWU: Norton Urges USPS Stamp Committee to Honor Members Killed in 2001 Anthrax Attack

Postal worker helps choking bar owner

Postal Service eyes closing Oshkosh mail processing

Cape rural letter carrier first 'million mile' woman


August 3, 2010

 Arbitrator Overturns Postal Employee’s Removal For Allegedly Filing Fraudulent OWCP Claim - The Postal Service relied on videos of the Grievant's reporting for work and a reenactment of the incident. Both videos were found to be inconclusive and did not establish just cause for the Grievant's removal. APWU Steward objected to the Special Agent’s lying to the Grievant in an effort to get the Grievant to admit to making a false claim. The Special Agent e admitted that he lied to the Grievant in an effort to gain more information from the Grievant. The arbitrator returned the grievant to employment and made him whole for all lost wages, seniority and benefits less any interim earnings and government benefits received.    |  


Seattle Police Pose as Mail Carriers And Can Lie to Suspects Legally

by Don Cheney - Seattle [WA] police say they sometimes pose as mail carriers. How do mail carriers feel about being put at risk this way? Does the Postal Service know about this police practice and approve its use?   |  


Major Mailers Make Billions, But Demand Postal Worker Pay Cuts

(APWU) The Alliance demands that postal management attack employee wages and benefits to bring them in line with non-union workers, many of whom are forced to accept any employer demands simply to remain employed. In anticipation of union resistance to demands for concession bargaining, the Alliance and its supporters have pushed regressive legislation that would guarantee their preferred outcome. (The major mailers support legislation that would require arbitrators to consider the financial health of the USPS when ruling on postal contracts. Arbitrators routinely do so, but requiring it as a matter of law is intended to tip the scales in management’s favor.)   |  


USPS Seeks Dismissal of Pricing Protest

Saying the Affordable Mail Alliance made “manifestly misleading comparisons” and advanced a “strained and fatally flawed interpretation” of existing law, the U.S. Postal Service today asked the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) to deny an alliance request to dismiss the Postal Service’s current pricing request.   |  


OSHA Fines USPS $357,000 for Safety Violations in Boston

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued the Postal Service nine “willful and serious” safety violations for exposing employees to electrical hazards at a Boston, MA postal facility. The USPS has been ordered to pay $357,000 in fines.  |  


Letter Carrier’s Creative Defense Fails To Overturn Mail Theft Conviction

Monday does not dispute the essential facts of the case, which establish that, while delivering mail as a Postal Service letter carrier, he opened a letter containing a birthday card, removed $40 in cash from the card, and used a portion of those funds to purchase snack food from a liquor store. Monday’s sole contention is that the district court erred in refusing to instruct the jury that, to convict, the government was required to prove that Monday had the specific intent permanently to deprive the owner of the money that he removed.   |  


Calif. Mailbag snatched from Escondido carrier

Over 8,700 Letter Carriers Heading to Anaheim for 67th Biennial NALC Union Convention

Zumbox Releases Second Generation Of Its Paperless Postal System

Congressman Chaffetz’s biggest donors: postal unions
Do Postal Execs Want To Lose Money on Periodicals?
USPS Fights Back vs. Motion to Dismiss Rate Hike
Massachusetts mailman charged with dealing drugs on route |
Mail carrier pleads not guilty
Green Bay to Keep Postal Distribution Center
Cutting Saturday Mail Delivery Would Fatally Weaken Postal Service - Joe Paul, Local  APWU


August 2, 2010

NALC: USPS Rejected Our Proposal That Would Of Saved Several Hundred Million Dollars Annually - In November 2006, during the last round of bargaining between NALC and USPS for a new collective bargaining agreement , NALC made an offer to USPS that included a package of proposed savings. In its offer, NALC proposed a separate workforce of letter carriers to delivery mail on Saturday, with all other letter carriers working only on weekdays.   |  


USPS Names Paul Vogel To Job Formerly Held By Bernstock

Postmaster General John Potter today announced the appointment of Paul Vogel as president, Mailing and Shipping Services, effective Aug. 16 (this position was formerly held by Robert Bernstock) . As president, Vogel will be responsible for all product management, product development, retail and commercial products and services, as well as commercial sales. The department is responsible for more than $65 billion in annual revenue.  |  


That's Bull - 44 cent

Video by Postal Employees Rapping against 5-day Delivery  |  


Former USPS Chief Financial Officer: Eliminating Saturday Delivery Is Not Necessary - The purpose of my testimony is evaluate whether the Postal Service’s proposal to eliminate Saturday delivery is necessary and whether it is consistent with good management practices. I conclude, for the reasons explained below, that it is neither. In my view, the Postal Service’s long-term financial health depends not on reducing the frequency of delivery but on its making its services more available to consumers. Moreover, I would argue, the Postal Service’s current financial situation is in part self-inflicted, to the extent that postal management failed until just recently to seek rate increases that would generate additional revenue. Successful service businesses raise prices as needed to maintain financial health.   |  


U.S. Postal Inspection Service Launches Employee Security Initiative

Based on the commitment that no employee should have to work in an atmosphere of fear or intimidation, the Postal Service has a zero-tolerance policy for workplace violence.  To renew this commitment to employees, USPS and the Postal Inspection Service have launched a security initiative — combining their resources to ensure that employees are aware of steps they can take to avoid becoming a victim of violence, whether on the street or working inside a postal facility.  |  


USPS conducting study on delivery operations

Baby birds die during shipment to Arkansas

Many unruffled by proposed postage increase
Bernstock Just Won't Go Away
Getting it there fast and cheap - the U.S. Postal Service is often your best choice for price and convenience


August 1, 2010

Six cities to train mail carriers to dispense anti-terror drugs

The Postal Service is ready to deliver lifesaving drugs to about a quarter of the residents of Minneapolis-St. Paul, the only metropolitan area in the nation where letter carriers have been trained to dispense medication after a large-scale terrorist attack involving biological weapons. The projected cost to set up the program and train postal workers: $1 million per city, according to the White House.   |  


Postal Worker gets prison for trashing more than 3, 000 pieces of mail

a federal judge ruled last week that a letter carrier's trashing of thousands of pieces of mail warranted at least 5 months behind bars. McCants told investigators last year that the workload overwhelmed him and that he never got a "slow day" to catch up, according to court records. "They ride you too hard, to save my job, to save face, looking out of myself," those documents quote him as saying.   |  


Illinois mail carrier saves woman's life

Editorial: Postal Service cannot survive as is

Postal Service needs a new plan to survive in the digital age

Post Office Wants You to Know They Caught  Thief Who Stole Your Shirt

Of the late-night sorts

Fed. government to seek life imprisonment for Wytheville Post Office gunman