USPS Processing Centers in Creston and Carroll could close


September 16th, 2011 by Ric Hanson

The bleeding of red ink at the U-S Postal Service could affect the life-blood of more than just small town post offices across Iowa and around the country. Officials with the USPS says larger facilities in medium-sized towns could close as well.

Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe said in a press conference yesterday, the USPS is forced to face a new reality, and as a result, four Processing Centers in Iowa, five in Nebraska and two in Missouri, are on a list of 252 centers nationwide targeted for possible consolidation or closure as the post office searches for ways to save money. The Processing centers in Creston, Carroll, Waterloo and Cedar Rapids are all candidates for closure. That’s in addition to the 178 proposed post office closings across Iowa which were previously announced. Closing the mail processing centers could cost as many as 35,000 jobs.

The mail processing network was designed to process and deliver First-Class mail within a 1-3 day window. If the change is implement, Donahoe says the new service standard would become 2-3 days. It would also save the agency as much as $3-billion. Donahoe said First-Class mail is the backbone of the Postal Service, but with a dramatic decline in mail volume and a resulting excess capacity, maintaining a vast national infrastructure is “….No longer realistic.

The Post Office faces competition with the Internet. With a struggling economy, less advertising mail is flowing through the system. The agency lost $8.5-billion last year, and is facing an even larger deficit this year. It’s not clear when the proposed changes to the Postal Service’s system will take place.