March 19, 2014 —
As many of you have experienced, the post office has been failing to deliver your weekly issue of The River Reporter in a timely fashion. The problem has been especially acute for our subscribers in New York State. This trouble began when the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) shut down its regional sorting center in Newburgh, requiring all mail to be trucked to Albany for sorting before trucked back to the Upper Delaware River towns and to destinations beyond. From where we sit, this new sorting system is an abysmal failure, and on top of that, regional post office officials have given us little if any satisfaction in trying to resolve this problem. This is simply unacceptable; it is harming our readers’ ability to get their news on time, and for us, it is harming our business.
We have been working on two fronts to address this problem. For one, we are in contact with Rep. Chris Gibson’s office on Capitol Hill. The congressman is very concerned about this problem and is actively addressing it.
In addition there is one thing that we can do ourselves; to the best of our limited ability, we are taking steps to bypass the Albany sorting facility by personally delivering newspapers to the post offices in the river corridor. (Sadly, it is not feasible for us to do the same by driving to New York City, New Jersey and other far-away destinations where we have faithful subscribers.) Making personal deliveries like this puts us in the position of paying twice—once for mailing your subscription in the first place, and then again paying our employees to deliver what the post office is failing to deliver on time.
Paying twice and doing the post office’s work for them is deplorable. It is not as if we have a choice to FedEx your paper to you every week; the cost would drive us out of business. The post office is a monopoly that we and all of you are dependent upon. This must be fixed.
Today, we ask you to help us by expressing your dissatisfaction with the post office about its delivery of our newspaper. Please report late mail to the USPS Inspector General’s Office any Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at 888/877-7644, or write a letter to the Postal Regulatory Commission at: Public Affairs & Government Relations, 901 New York Ave., NW, Suite 200, Washington, DC 20268.
In addition, we would like to hear your stories of your problems with the untimely delivery of your own mail. (Last week someone we know told how an express package sent via USPS failed to reach its destination for more than 10 days.) We invite you to email your post office stories to firstname.lastname@example.org . Please indicate if we may print your story in The River Reporter as a letter to the editor.
Finally, if you are a subscriber and you have a computer and the Internet, you can read The River Reporter online for free. If you have trouble logging on, contact Breann at 845/252-7414, ext. 21.
Rest assured, we are doing everything within our power to resolve this matter.