CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 10, 2013 |
Wanted: Elves to answer letters to Santa Claus from Southern California's needy children. The U.S. Postal Service's Operation Letters to Santa needs more volunteers to adopt letters sent by low-income children asking Santa for coats, food, clothes, shoes and other gifts. Elves choose a letter and return it to the post office so workers can deliver the reply and gift to the child's family. The program, in its 101styear, answers letters nationwide, with 17 branches participating this year, according to its volunteer website, BeAnElf.org . In 2011, 75 branches participated; in 2012, 25 branches offered letters.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 7, 2013 |
BERKELEY, Calif. - Plenty of communities have resisted the U.S. Postal Service's sweeping real estate sell-off, battling to keep open historic buildings that speak of bygone civic grandeur and to guarantee old-fashioned mail service for the public. Few have succeeded. But this is Berkeley, home of the Free Speech Movement and protracted protests over civil rights, Vietnam and more. So when the postal service announced plans to sell Berkeley's 1914 Second Renaissance Revival-style main post office, decorated in New Deal-era art and situated in the heart of the liberal city's Civic Center, the town rose up. Opponents staged a 33-day encampment on its steps, and the mayor and entire City Council joined forces to block the sale, with backing from U.S. Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Oakland)
November 18, 2013 |
Two Sundays ago I was roused from my midday stupor by the doorbell. I staggered to the door to discover a big box from Amazon deposited on the stoop, and a U.S. Postal Service truck just rounding the corner on its way to make another Sunday delivery. "What the --?" I asked. The delivery, as I was presently to learn, was the harbinger of the Postal Service's new deal with Amazon for Sunday delivery of the online retailer's packages in big cities. It's a brilliant move that serves both the partners and customers too. It builds on the Postal Service's reach in parcel delivery -- the USPS performs the same last-mile service in many communities for UPS and FedEx -- and provides it with a new source of revenue.
November 15, 2013 |
The beleaguered U.S. Postal Service on Friday reported a $5-billion loss in the last fiscal year and again urged Congress to take legislative action that would help the agency shore up its finances. The $5-billion loss during the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30 comes even as revenue and productivity have improved, the agency said. It's the seventh-straight yearly net loss for the agency, which has seen mail volume drop precipitously in recent years. Since 2006, the agency has cut its expenses by $15 billion annually, but first-class mail volume has continued to drop. "We've achieved some excellent results for the year in terms of innovations, revenue gains and cost reductions, but without major legislative changes we cannot overcome the limitations of our inflexible business model,” Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe said.
November 10, 2013 |
Giant online retailer Amazon.com Inc. is turning up the heat on rivals this holiday season and beyond under a new deal with the U.S. Postal Service for delivering packages on Sundays. Starting this week, the postal service will bring Amazon packages on Sundays to shoppers' doors in the Los Angeles and New York metropolitan areas at no extra charge. Next year, it plans to roll out year-round Sunday delivery to Dallas, New Orleans, Phoenix and other cities. Getting packages on Sundays normally is expensive for customers.
September 25, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - Facing a “precarious financial condition” as fewer customers use its services, the United States Postal Service proposed another round of rate increases Wednesday to go into effect in January - its largest price hike since 2002. The plan - which would raise the cost of first-class stamps for one-ounce letters to 49 cents from 46 cents, among other changes - is intended to generate an additional $2 billion in annual revenue for the Postal Service. The agency expects to lose about $6 billion in the current fiscal year.