Press Release from the office of Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y
U.S. Postal Service Is Considering Closing Two Postal Facilities In Syracuse, North Syracuse
U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and Congressman Dan Maffei today called on the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) to consider local impacts, including pedestrian access and neighborhood benefits, when evaluating a consolidation plan that affects post offices in Central New York. The USPS is considering closing two post offices in the Syracuse area – the Elmwood Post Office on South Avenue in Syracuse, and the North Main Street Post Office in North Syracuse.
Senator Gillibrand and Congressman Maffei raised concerns that the plan to close these branches could have potentially harmful economic and environmental consequences. Both facilities are in heavily traversed areas where many patrons walk to and from their post office, providing access to citizens in surrounding low-income and elderly communities. The office in North Syracuse has been a part of the community for more than 100 years. Both postal facilities also make a profit, with the North Syracuse facility making more than $300,000 and the Elmwood office making more than $130,000 this year.
Senator Gillibrand said, “It is unacceptable for the USPS to close two critical post offices in Central New York, which are vital to the local neighborhoods. If the point of consolidation is to save money, then why is the USPS considering closing two postal facilities which actually make a profit. Closing these post offices could have harmful economic and environmental consequences on our communities.”
Congressman Maffei said, “I’m please to join forces with Senator Gillibrand to fight to keep our local post offices open. This is an extremely important issue for our community- that is why I’ve been working on this for months and will continue to pursue all possible opportunities to keep our Elmwood and North Syracuse post offices open for business.”
Syracuse Mayor Matthew J. Driscoll said, “The Elmwood post office is a strategically located lifeline for many residents on the Southside. Losing mailing, delivery and financial services such as stamps, post office boxes and money orders would create a hardship for residents in this area.”
Village of North Syracuse Mayor John Heindorf said, “The Post Office in the Village of North Syracuse has been in operation since 1887 and serves not only the 7,000 residents in the village, but an additional 14,000 residents outside the confines of the village that reside in the same 13212 zip code. All of these people and businesses have depended heavily on the North Syracuse Post Office throughout the years. Closing this post office would be a severe blow for everyone.
In their letter to John E. Potter, Postmaster General and Chief Executive Office of the USPS, Senator Gillibrand and Congressman Maffei wrote, “Closing these branches will not only lead to less patrons using the services of the United States Postal Service (USPS), but would have potentially harmful consequences from both an economic and environmental standpoint on our communities. As the USPS explores ways to trim costs by consolidating branches, it would be impractical to consider these offices as they both make a profit. … We appreciate the need for the postal service to re-evaluate programs in light of the current economy. However, we believe there are ways to cut costs without reducing or denying service to our constituents.”
The USPS held public hearings on Nov. 6 concerning the possible closures. Maureen Marion, a local representative for the Postal Service, told the Syracuse Post-Standard that the decision likely will not be made until 2010. According to the Post-Standard, residents in North Syracuse and Syracuse have collected more than 2,400 signatures on petitions to keep the post offices open.