News Byte: USPS Delays Load-Leveling Plan

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News Byte:  USPS Delays Load Leveling Plan
Friday DSCF drops will still deliver on Monday, for now.

Yesterday was to be the day the U.S. Postal Service's "load-leveling" plan to reduce man-hours took effect. Instead, yesterday was the day that the Postal Regulatory Commission released its advisory opinion on the plan, which it found lacking.

As a result, Post Office senior management will take time to digest the PRC's report before moving forward. Contacted today by Direct Marketing News, Postal Service spokesperson Sue Brennan replied, "The Postal Service has received the PRC's Advisory Opinion and the recommendations are being reviewed."

Before instituting major service changes, USPS must submit its plans to the PRC for its opinion 90 days before the new procedure is to go into effect. The postal regulatory body waited the full period before releasing its findings, which essentially stated that the Postal Service failed to conduct proper tests of new load-leveling features to ensure that it would still be able to meet its Universal Service Obligation.

"The Postal Service has been making many changes to save costs over the last few years. To make sure it meets its service obligation, we had to raise the point that it's difficult to maintain service when making so many changes all at once," said PRC Chairman Ruth Goldway in issuing the opinion.

Large mailers that qualify for discounts by transporting mail to Destination Sectional Center Facilities, where the load-leveling changes would occur, have been wary of the plan because of changes in drops. Mail accepted at facilities on Fridays is now delivered on Monday. Those deliveries would move to Tuesday under load leveling.

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