Sunday, November 25, 2012

Wow! Could This Be? The US Postal Service Looking At ObamaCare's 29-Hour Work Week?

It could be. The article doesn't come right out and say it, and my hunch is that the cut in hours would have come anyway, but with the push by industry to cut employees to 29 hours/week wherever possible to save on health insurance costs, one has to bet that this issue came up in discussions about hourly cuts.

The link is at the Rapid City Journal.
The latest U.S. Postal Service plan to save money will hit hard in rural America, including in South Dakota, where more than 200 post offices in mostly small towns are likely to see a reduction in counter service.

Residents of Keystone will find out firsthand about the postal cuts on Tuesday evening, when residents can come to the town's small post office, at 111 Winter St., to give input on the proposal to reduce service hours.
Cue up Connie Francis.


Back to the linked article, another story line. Cut and paste from the article:
In Keystone, residents will have a choice to close their local office or accept service reductions. The office could be closed if more than 60 percent of Keystone residents opt to close it; otherwise the Keystone post office would be open six hours each weekday, a 30-minute daily reduction, he said.
Maybe I'm misreading this but that paragraph suggests that the folks have a tough decision to make: a) close the post office entirely; or, b) a 30-minute daily reduction in counter service.

Is it just me, or am I missing something. Chester, that's rhetorical. Please don't comment.

Go back and read that article to the end; it borders on inanity. Or insanity. Memo to self: file under "Nuts."

Actually, the more one thinks about it, it has to be health care costs.  Except for counter hours, all other post office hours / services remain intact. Certainly 30 minutes / day / wages / counter service is not the difference whether a post office stays open or not. Half an hour's pay each day? No, but cutting to 29 hours will eliminate the huge health care expense.


  1. I bigger problem for the USPS is that congress is requiring them to make a profit. Essentially to pay their own way. Nothing wrong with that. However what is wrong is that Congress will not let the USPS make the decisions as to how best to run the USPS. Politics constantly comes into play. I wonder where UPS and Fed Ex would be if everything they wanted to do had to be run through congress first?

  2. The postal service is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the public sector unions defined benefits, be it health or retirement that is eating the taxpayer alive. Time to reform it like the private sector with a contribution model. Get the beneficiary contributing to part of the cost.

    Meanwhile from the Williston Herald more on the Alexander Hotel.

    Hotel has 90-day construction cycle

  3. Postal service employees would be covered under civil service union rules, not really sure the 29 hr. limit would change that. It would seem to me the union contract would superceed ZeroCare in this instance, but I am as always to stand corrected.

    1. You are probably correct; I really don't know, but it certainly sounds "suspicious."

      Beyond all the issues regarding pay, retirement, money, yada, yada, I remain dumbfounded that the only thing under consideration is a 30-minute reduction in counter service on weekdays and that's the alternate to completely closing the post office. And the 30-minute reduction in counter service is going to be phased in over two years. Or maybe that was referring to other post offices. Regardless, it seems a bit beyond the pale.