Durbin Statement on Postal Service Notifications

No facilities will close before May 15, giving Congress time to act

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] – U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today made the following statement after learning that the Postal Service began notifying employees of possible closures.


“No postal facilities in Illinois will close before May 15, 2012, period,” said U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL).  “When the Postmaster General agreed, in my office, to a five-month moratorium on postal facility closures, he made it clear that the Postal Service would have to move forward with its consolidation studies and notifications until Congress acts.  The Postal Service must adapt to our new high-tech world and it’s now up to Congress to come up with a plan.  In the Senate, I believe we are close to finding a comprehensive plan that will save jobs, cut costs and still maintain one of the best postal services in the world.”


On December 13, 2011, Durbin joined with 14 other Senators to announce that at their request, the Postal Service voluntarily agreed to put in place a five-month moratorium on closing postal facilities.  Their announcement followed a meeting between several Senators, Donahoe and the U.S. Postal Service Board of Governors Chairman Thurgood Marshall, Jr., in which Senators expressed concern over the impact of reduced service and the loss of thousands of jobs.  During the moratorium, scheduled to end on May 15, 2012, the Postal Service will continue to study the impact of proposed closures on service and costs and to solicit community input. 


On September 15, 2011, the U.S. Postal Service announced plans to review its mail processing network in the hopes of reducing costs.  The Postal Service is currently considering the elimination of overnight delivery and studying the possibility of closing 3,700 mostly rural post offices and 252 mail processing facilities.


Of the nearly 250 facilities being studied for consolidation, nine are in Illinois, including five – Rockford, Springfield, Quincy, Carbondale and Centralia – that are being considered for consolidation with out-of-state facilities.  All nine facilities are owned by the Postal Service and employ a total of approximately 1,800 people.