3 area postal processing centers on list of proposed cuts - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

3 area postal processing centers on list of proposed cuts

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CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) -

The Postal Service says it may close more than 250 mail processing facilities across the country in an effort to cut costs.

Officials say the closings could cost as many as 35,000 jobs.

Three of those processing facilities are in the Heartland: Cape Girardeau, Mo., Carbondale, Ill., and Paducah, Ky.

[View the complete list.]

Spokespeople with the Postal Service processing centers in Paducah and Carbondale say 39 jobs could be eliminated in Paducah and 50 to 60 jobs could be eliminated in Carbondale.

The U.S. Postal Service plans to conduct a study at the Cape Girardeau Processing & Distribution Facility to examine the feasibility of consolidating its operations into the St. Louis, MO Network Distribution Center.

This Area Mail Processing study involves a review of the mail processing and transportation operations to determine capacity needs within the postal network in order to increase efficiency and improve productivity.

The study is expected to be completed in early 2012.

A spokesperson says once the studies are completed, the shut downs could happen between February and March of 2012.

[Read a letter from the Postal Service to the local union in Cape Girardeau.]

Changes in delivery standards and the closings could save the agency as much as $3 billion, and officials are seeking changes from Congress that could help them cut expenses more.

The agency lost $8.5 billion last year and is facing an even larger deficit this year as it struggles with shrinking business because of the movement of first-class mail to the Internet and the struggling economy, which limited advertising mail.

The Postal Service does not expect mail volume to return to previous peak levels when the economy fully recovers.

Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe says the Postal Service is not going out of business, and that it's trying to get its finances in order.

If the feasibility study reveals an opportunity to consolidate Cape Girardeau with St. Louis mail processing operations, the Postal Service will hold a public meeting to explain the proposed operational changes and potential impacts on service, and to solicit public feedback to be considered before the final decision is made.

The Postal Service does not receive tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations.

Copyright 2011 KFVS. All rights reserved.  The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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