Postal Service to conduct new study of mail processing operations in Utica

UTICA, N.Y. - The Postal Service plans to conduct a new study at the Utica Processing and Distribution Facility, located at 100 Pitcher Street, for possible consolidation of some operations into the Syracuse Processing and Distribution Center, officials said Tuesday.

The study, known as an Area Mail Processing (AMP) study, involves a review of the mail processing operations to determine capacity needs at a facility in order to increase efficiency and improve productivity.

Postal officials said the need for the study comes as the Postal Service faces one of the most difficult challenges in its history. The current economic downturn and continued internet diversion has led to a drastic 20 percent decline in mail volume since 2007, resulting in historically large deficits.

Even when the economy fully recovers, the Postal Service said it does not expect mail volume to return to previous peak levels, and is projecting annual deficits for the foreseeable future.

"As a result of the volume loss, we have more facilities, equipment and people than we need to process a declining volume of mail," said the Postal Service's Albany District Manager, Edward F. Phelan, Jr. "We have to reduce the size of our network because we are no longer receiving enough revenue to sustain its cost."

"One way to do that is to consolidate operations where feasible," Phelan added. "That is why we're doing this study. Consolidating processing operations and placing our people where we need them makes logical business sense given the economic realities. We're only doing what any company would do when hit with a 20 percent decline in its business."

If the feasibility study supports the business case for changing mail processing operations, the Postal Service will hold a public meeting to allow members of the community to ask questions and provide feedback.

This input will be considered in the final proposal.

"I want to assure everyone that we will not make any changes to our operations that would cause delays in delivery to your home or business," said Phelan.

The Postal Service is soliciting the public's input as part of the study process.

Comments may be submitted by mail to:
David Desrosiers, Manager Consumer Affairs, USPS
30 Old Karner Road
Albany NY 12288.

All comments will be fully considered in any decision.

Postal officials had no timetable for completion of the study.

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