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USPS Defends Plan to Close Thousands of Offices at PRC Hearing
By Kenneth Corbin
September 09, 2011
WASHINGTON - A representative from the U.S. Postal Service on Thursday defended the organization's plan to shutter thousands of facilities in an effort to cut costs and help stanch the flow of red ink that is projected to see an operating deficit swell to $20 billion over the next decade.
Appearing at a hearing before the Postal Regulatory Commission, an independent agency with oversight over the Postal Service, James Boldt, the national manager of customer service operations in the USPS Office of Delivery and Post Office Operations, answered a battery of questions from representatives of postal employees' associations and the mailing community about the proposal to evaluate more than 3,600 retail locations for potential closure.
No party involved in the PRC proceedings challenged the dire financial predicament that the Postal Service confronts. In the third quarter of the current fiscal year, ending June 30, the USPS posted a net loss of $3.1 billion. For the first three quarters of the fiscal year, the Postal Service lost $5.7 billion, and is projecting losses for the full year as high as $10 billion. Next year, the Postal Service is projecting a $9 billion loss, and has warned that the losses could swell to $16 billion by 2015, and $20 billion by 2020.