Photo courtesy USPS official Facebook page
Photo courtesy USPS official Facebook page

News You Can Use: Postmaster general promises steps to fix Georgia mail processing delays

by Dave Williams | May 17, 2024 | Capitol Beat News Service

ATLANTA – U.S. Postmaster General Louis DeJoy Friday outlined a series to steps the postal service is taking to improve service at a regional mail processing center in Palmetto.

In a letter to U.S. Sen. Jon Ossoff, D-Ga., DeJoy announced that more than 100 personnel from across the postal service have been sent to the Atlanta Regional Processing and Distribution Center (RPDC) “to work onsite to identify and rectify bottlenecks, conduct quality assurance, ensure Atlanta personnel are adhering to the new procedures, and ensure the timely processing and dispatch of mail and packages.”

The federal agency also will revise transportation schedules between the regional center and other local processing centers to increase local trips, add processing capacity at the local centers, and shift cross-country volume away from the Atlanta facility until service stabilizes, DeJoy wrote.

A postal service restructuring plan launched at Atlanta and Richmond, Va., earlier this year aimed at stopping the agency from bleeding red ink resulted in massive delays in mail processing. At a Senate committee hearing last month, Ossoff revealed that only 36% of inbound mail handled by the Palmetto center was being delivered on time as of the end of February.

“The postal service is in the middle of a major new investment in our Georgia operations,” DeJoy wrote Friday. “Unfortunately, the initiation of the Atlanta RPDC led to a significant drop in performance, which was unanticipated.

“To address this challenge in a purposeful and deliberative manner, we will continue to devote substantial time, resources, and attention until the facility and network improvements are performing to the intended specifications.”

DeJoy had announced earlier this week that the postal service would call a pause in implementing the restructuring plan at least until next year to allow time to get a handle on the problems. However, that raised questions as to whether that pause would affect the processing delays already being experienced in Georgia.

Ossoff released a statement earlier Friday criticizing DeJoy for failing to provide updates the senator had requested regarding on-time mail delivery for Georgia families and businesses.

“I will continue fighting for the Georgians suffering from the postmaster general’s failure,” Ossoff vowed in a statement he released after receiving the letter.

Capitol Beat is a nonprofit news service operated by the Georgia Press Educational Foundation that provides coverage of state government to newspapers throughout Georgia. The mission of Capitol Beat is to provide thorough, unbiased coverage of state government news consumers can trust to the more than 125 daily and weekly newspapers that are members of the Georgia Press Association.

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