Federal Manager's Daily Report

The Postal Service has said it will save $2 billion a year by ceasing to deliver mail on Saturdays. It will continue delivering packages on Saturday and current Saturday post office hours will continue unchanged.

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The fate of six-day delivery remains up in the air, however, as provisions in a spending bill for the remainder of the current fiscal year may renew longstanding language requiring six-day delivery. However, controversy has arisen over whether that language would prevent USPS from carrying out its plan to stop mail delivery on Saturdays, since it still would be delivering packages.

USPS says that under its plan, most of the saving will come from employee reassignment and attrition. It says the change reflects declining mail volume and as well as growth its package business.

According to USPS, since 2006 it has reduced its cost base by $15 billion and trimmed its workforce by 193,000, or 28 percent, while consolidating over 200 mail processing locations. It says it is proceeding with further consolidation as it waits for postal reform legislation to relieve it of an obligation to pre-fund retiree health benefits at a cost of over $5 billion a year—USPS has not made the last two of those payments in any case and there have been no repercussions–and to give it greater flexibility to operate as a business.