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American Postal Workers Union to Picket at USPS Public Meeting
01/05/10 - 10:24 PM
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Erin Hawley - bio
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click for larger image Bay County, Fla:

The Bay County American Postal Workers Union holds an emergency meeting Tuesday evening to discuss the United States Postal Service’s proposal to close a Bay County post office outgoing mail sorting facility.

The facility is located within the Sherman Avenue post office branch, and the proposal would move all outgoing mail sorting to Pensacola.

Although postal officials say other post office services within that branch would remain open, union members at the meeting are concerned that the closure could negatively affect Bay County.

Those at the meeting voted unanimously to picket at the USPS public meeting scheduled for January 14th. They plan to bring information to share with the public on the proposal to close that sorting facility.

The local employees say moving Bay County’s outgoing mail sorting to Pensacola will affect not only affect Bay County but any city with an area code beginning with 3-2-4.

Joseph Breckenridge, USPS Communications, says the move should not affect delivery time, saying “All of the post offices served by the Panama City plant will remain at one day.”

Union members say otherwise.

“The mail that the public mails out used to go overnight to all other 3-2-4 zip codes and Dothan and Tallahassee. Now it’s going to take two days to a week,” says USPS employee Andy Georgiadis.

Union members say the concern isn’t over job or pay cuts but decreased customer service, saying the change would take the “service” out of United States Postal Service.

“About ten years ago they did the same thing with Dothan’s mail,” says union president Mark Zediak. “They brought it down here and that didn’t last but about a year in a half.”

“Is $500,000 truly saved in Panama City for moving our mail?” Georgiadis asks. “If it is, then our question to the postal service, Mr. Breckenridge, will be tell us what it will cost to truck our mail back and forth to and from Pensacola.”

News 13 took those questions to Joseph Breckenridge, who said, “Most of the savings comes from a reduction of labor costs.”

When asked about trucking costs and if routes would be increased, Breckenridge replied that the trucks already run the route but could not provide us with specific details on how many times per day or if that number would be increased, citing security reasons.

Union workers also point out that the new Bay County International Airport could impact growth and create more mail but Breckenridge says future growth will not affect the decision or the Pensacola sorting facility.

The USPS public meeting to discuss the proposed changes will be held on January 14th at 7:00 p.m. at Legion Hall on the Bay County Fairgrounds.

Union members say they’ll be there, with signs and information.

User Comments

All a picket accomplishes is free publicity from the media.  USPS needs to adapt, this is a new decade and the internet age.  How can USPS compete?  They need to figure that out.  The government can not keep subsidizing a cash cow.

Posted by Brian7  on  01/07  at  06:44 AM

Mr. Krauth,

Your questions and concerns have merit.

I look forward to meeting you and the other members of the team next week.

Again, nothing has been decided.

Joseph Breckenridge
USPS Communications

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/06  at  07:02 PM


  So what about the performance of Pensacola versus the performace of our facility in the 010 operation. What about the late mail I see every morning that is DOA.This failure happens with out Pensacola processing our collection mail. That mail is delayed a day. You stated in your powerpoint that service would not change. If mail that is committed overnight and thus is delayed as alot of it will, than dosent that change delivery standards? You failed again to answer the question of the 24 hr clock in processing. you failed to answer if mail is dead on arrival, who’s EXFC score fails, and who has to report to the principal’s office. Again reading your powerpoint presentation online, I fail to see how what you claim want change, actually will. I want answers to all of the points I have requested. I want you to explain what happens when tourest season starts. Are we to expect the trucks to sprout wings.That can add 30 mins each way to Pensacola.Sounds like plan failure

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/06  at  06:47 PM

One more thing…

Regarding your suggestion to split the work between Pensacola and Panama City…

I don’t think it’s likely that a split operation could save what could be gained through consolidation. It fact, a split operation is likely to increase costs.

The merging of operations is typically where the savings are, allowing one to benefit from the economies of scale.

Again, this is not a done deal.

Joseph Breckenridge
USPS Communications

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/06  at  06:32 PM

You are right.

The mail processing team in Panama City have a right to be proud of their accomplishments.

This is not being considered because of any failure by the employees or the management team in Panama City.

Is was studied because it was seen as a place where it may be possible save money by consolidation and still deliver the goods.

I sincerely regret anything I may have said or written that has caused any member of team anguish.

I have worked for the USPS for 33 years and have great respect for its work and its people.

I also know what it’s like to face change and uncertainity. I have been through many shakeups and reorganizations and have twice had my job abolished. It’s not fun.

Keep in mind that this is not a done deal. Some have claimed that this has all been decided already. It has not.

I don’t know the future, but I do know how to read a spreadsheet and the numbers point to only one thing: we must change. We don’t have any choice.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/06  at  06:26 PM


  Would’nt it be cost saving to split Pensacola in half and bring half to Panama City and send the other half to Mobile. Since Mobile does a better job than Pensacola.Does an effieciant operation mean anything Joseph? I challenge you to put your script away and bring the data that you know exsist and explain why the good folks of Panama city have to take one for the team. Also I will remind you that we do great work with 1/4 of the personel that other facilities have. Amazing. How much mail do you put your hands on? Maybe the postal ser. could look at cutting you loose since you are of no value to the everyday hands on processing of the mail. When you come to Panama City have your facts in hand. If you can’t deviate from your script,just stay at home and save the post office the travel expense, because unlike you, We are informed.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/06  at  05:52 PM

Mr. Breckenridge,

I have listened your ill imformed view long enough. You are in Atlanta and you are so ill imformed and programed as to what to say and commit on, that it is discusting. Everybody will agree that the post office is loosing money and something has to be done.
According to your data. Panama city has the best running AFCS in the district. Out of 274 cancel machines we are routinely in the top 5 in the nation! Pensacola is WORSE in the use or lack of on their AFCS. The 24 hour clock that mgmt.uses where 80% of mail cancelled by 2000 hrs. We achieve here in Panama City. How about Pensacola? What about finishing primary at 2300? We do.What about EXFC after the move Joseph. What about mail we get a 05:00 that is dead on arrival.Do you see that from Atl. We see it everyday here Joseph.After the AO mail has been DPS’ed, What do we do with the mail at 05:00? Zone it out so carriers can case it,thus delaying delivery starts. What about it Joseph

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/06  at  05:41 PM

The morning dispatch truck would have to leave Pensacola by 2:30-3:00 am, to get the morning mail that was sorted that night to Panama City for delivery service as the mail carriers start working up their delivery mail beginning at 7:00 or 7:30 am.
The real question is will Pensacola have all mail addressed to Panama City, that was picked up in Panama City, the day before and shipped by truck to Pensacola after 6:00 or 6:30 pm, cancelled, sorted and processed by 2:30 or 3:00 am so it can leave Pensacola and get back to Panama city by 6:00 am, so the mail carriers can deliver it that day?
I don’t think so. You might get 50% but never 99% as the Official is touting as you are losing at least 6 critical hours of processing time.
That means all machinery for processing in Pensacola is turned off by 3:00 am?
Wmbb, tv needs to send Jerry Brown to Pensacola operations and see if the sorting machinery is still switched on at 3:00 am.
I bet it is still running with prior days mail.

Posted by retired one  on  01/06  at  12:00 PM

“Union members say the concern isn’t over job or pay cuts but decreased customer service, saying the change would take the “service” out of United States Postal Service.”  This is not right at all.  While I fully support keeping the facility as it is, where unions are concerned it’s ALWAYS and always will be about jobs and pay cuts.  So let’s keep things honest here, okay?  I don’t like what they are proposing anymore than you do, but when people don’t support the Postal Service and keep contracting their mail service out, something has to give.  That. my friend, is the bottom line, not “service”.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/06  at  09:57 AM

Well i can use fedex, DHL, Ups.  if the usps wants to cut jobs and make me get my mail later then i can just take my mailbox down.  and put a ups box up.  and if anyone wants to send me mail they will have to use ups if not they can send me a email.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/06  at  09:47 AM

Let me explain the 99 percent reference.

If this proposal is adopted about one percent of the mail sorted in the consolidated operation in Pensacola will likely move to two-day delivery.

One percent.

When the impact of a change is relatively small it is irresponsible not to look for a common sense balance between cost and speed.

For example, it would be possible to provide overnight delivery of all mail from Panama City to almost any location in the nation—if the cost of doing so didn’t matter. But cost always matters.

It is a question of judgment where the best possible balance between cost and benefit can be found.

If this were easy to do it would have been done a long time ago. The fact is, this is difficult. However, the challenge, given the massive contraction in our business, is something we must struggle with.

Every self-sustaining enterprises must make these decisions every day. The USPS is no different.

Joseph Breckenridge
USPS Communications

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/06  at  09:41 AM

What is also killing the Postal Service is UPS, FedEx and the like. These companies lock businesses into a contract that will not allow them to ship by any method other than themselves so any shipments through the Postal Service is out! This I got from a business I had tried to order from online and when I balked at using UPS I was told, “Sorry, UPS does not allow us to use the Post Office. It’s in their contract”. So all of you that keep feeding these outside companies are to blame for the post office’s troubles. Oh, as for the song-and-dance about damage, I can tell you from experience that UPS and FedEx can be just as rough on packages and sometimes worse so that dog don’t hunt anymore!

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/06  at  09:21 AM

What you are not hearing from the Official is that if you mail a letter from Panama City, to another address in Panama City, there is a 99% chance it will get delivered the next day as they cancel the stamps and sort that letter, after the last collections, around 6:00 pm until 11:00 pm. It gets sorted for local delivery and to the carrier after midnight until 6:00 am, when the carrier gets it to deliver.
Under this plan, a local letter would leave Panama City, after all mail is collected, around 6:00 pm. Arrive in Pensacola, at the earliest, 8:30 pm. They would cancel the stamp and begin processing, which because of the 2 plus hour trip back to town, would increase travel time,thus sorting time, thus local delivery arrivals.
Some local mail would now take 2 days instead of one day as you lose about 6 hours of processing time every day by sending the mail to Pensacola only to come back here for delivery
The 99%overnight figure will no doubt drop and some local mail will take 2 days

Posted by retired one  on  01/06  at  08:05 AM

The Sherman Avenue Post Office and Processing Facility will not be closed.

The only change under consideration is the consolidation of the processing and sorting of mail collected during the day in the greater Panama City area.

Even if the proposal is adopted (no decision has been made) the sorting of mail for delivery in the greater Panama City area will remain in that facility. Also, Post Office Box and retail services will remain open.

The Postal Service’s business has dropped 18 percent in three years. This trend will continue. The internet is the primary game changer and the economy has taken a toll as well.

If adopted, this change will save about $500,000 a year in labor and other costs.

The Postal Service is self-supporting. It has operated by the sale of postage and other services since 1984.

Like any other self-sustaining enterprise, the Postal Service cannot spend more than it makes. It must change.

Joseph Breckenridge
USPS Communications

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/06  at  12:56 AM
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