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Moving mail processing would affect Columbia County deliveries

Hearing set Thursday in Augusta

Posted: December 9, 2011 - 9:52am  |  Updated: December 9, 2011 - 9:57am

Twitter @ColumbiaCounty

A feasibility study completed by the U.S. Postal Service supports discontinuing mail-processing operations at Augusta’s main branch, the postal service has announced.

According to the postal service, local mail - including all mail from Columbia County's five post offices - would be sent to Macon, Ga., or Columbia to be sorted and posted to their destinations.

The consolidation would not close Aug­usta’s main post office branch, but it would affect 110 jobs and make the standard delivery time two to three days.

“The people who are going to suffer are the people in the community, because … checks, income that goes through the mail, bills, they will be delayed,” said Karen Gilmore, the president of the Augusta-area American Postal Workers Union.

Before taking any action, the postal service will hold a public meeting to get input. If the consolidation goes through, it would save $4.9 million.

Gilmore said the consolidation would let mail be collected at the Augusta branch, but not sorted or mailed out on site. Letters mailed from ZIP codes starting with 308 and 309 - which includes all Columbia County ZIP codes - will go 125 miles to Macon to be sorted; those from the 298 ZIP codes will go to Columbia, 75 miles away.

The postal service has announced several branch closings and consolidations across the U.S.

The postal service would have to reduce its operating costs by $20 billion by 2015 to return to profitability, David Williams, the vice president of network operations, said in a news release.

Gilmore said that because a public hearing is required before making changes, she is not sure public outcry can prevent any changes.

“I think they’re just going through the motions” by having the hearing, she said. “But we’re not going to sit still, either. It’s going to impact everyone.”

Postal hearing

A public hearing on the proposal to move Augusta's postal processing will be held at 6 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 15, at The Kroc Center, 1833 Broad St., Augusta.

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Comments (4)

Riverman1

Thoughts

As long as I don't have to drive to Macon to mail a letter I can deal with it if it helps decrease the national debt.

I remember the last letter I wrote. I had one heck of a hangover and was broke. I used my trusty ball point pen made by the blind folks that I had stolen from the Army to write a letter that I had to put in one of those things they used to call envelopes, lick a stamp and mail it.

That was in 1983 when I wrote my aunt a letter full of lies saying how well I was doing and what I did in church last Sunday and asking her for money to go on a trip with the people from the church. I had a great time with the money she sent and I decided I would start a career writing for money.

GaStang22

Lovely, The mail service out

Lovely, The mail service out here already bites. Its like they hold the mail and dont even stamp it for a couple of weeks then it still takes a few days to get delivered. I can hand deliver to california in the time it takes for most of my mail to go trhough. Seems it is only certain ppeople in CC that cause this problem as it is only like that during a noticeable time frame, but do you think they investigate. Nope, just keep paying those lazy people. Maybe thats one reason the postal business is going downhill, who wants to mail a letter that takes 3 weeks to get 10 minutes away???? And this is going to make it worse. And what about our P.O Boxes?????

jlhs32

How does it ever make sense

How does it ever make sense for a business to decrease the quality of service provided? Oh, in the Federal Government.

dickworth1

Postal Service

I have no problem with closing the augusta processing
department. The postal service has wasted users money
and tax payers money for years thinking it would never dry up. Their union has the postal workers making way too much
and I for one am sick of unions. I don't think it should be allowed in government jobs or any contracted job where tax payers have to be told by union leaders how much we have to pay for the service so the union leaders can sit on their
butts and live the good life. Close the center and close some branches as well. Maybe all the employees can get paid by the union bosses while looking for work.

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