Senator Baucus to PMG: Make Good on Promise to Consult us Before Shutting Down Montana’s Rural Post Offices

Postmaster General Commits to Consulting Baucus on Any Changes to Montana Postal Operations

(Washington, D.C.) – Montana’s senior U.S. Senator Max Baucus is urging Postmaster General, Patrick Donahoe to make good on his promise to consult with him before making any changes to Montana’s postal operations.

“The Postmaster promised me in Ingomar that no decisions affecting Montana post offices would be made without discussing it with me first. While I’m glad Postmaster Donahoe came directly to Montana to hear from us, it’s just as important that he make good on the promises he made during the trip,” said Baucus. “We’ve had to fight to make our voices heard and we’re going to keep having to fight to make our voices count as the Postal Service irons out its fiscal situation.”

Last week, the Postmaster General answered Baucus’ call to listen to Montanans as the U.S. Postal Service considers rural post office closures and area mail processing facility consolidations.

In a letter to the Postmaster General sent today, Baucus followed up on some of the promises Donahoe made during community listening sessions in Helena and Ingomar .

Text of the letter is available below and online HERE.

April 18, 2012


Mr. Patrick Donahoe

Postmaster General
United States Postal Service
475 L’Enfant Plaza SW, Room 10022
Washington, DC 20260

Dear Postmaster General Donahoe:

Thank you for agreeing to consult with me before making decisions regarding any post office closures in Montana.  I am dedicated to working with you to find long-term solutions that address the Postal Service’s financial situation without sacrificing services where they are most relied upon.

I am pleased you came to Montana last week to hear from folks about the importance of rural post offices in their communities.  I hope that our visit around the state gave you appreciation for our wide open spaces and great distances between towns.  I am glad that you had the chance to hear from folks at the listening sessions in Helena and Ingomar about how critical postal services are to Montanans. Thank you for your time, and for listening to our concerns.

As you heard firsthand, post offices are lifelines for rural communities across Montana.  Access to broadband internet is extremely limited, and even cellular phone service is unreliable.  Folks depend on mail to run their businesses, send and receive medications, and keep in touch with their loved ones.  Like you saw in Ingomar, post offices truly are anchor institutions for Montana’s Main Streets. It is critical that Montanans from those rural communities had the opportunity to give their input to you directly about how closures would affect their every-day lives.  I appreciate you taking me up on my invitation to come talk to those communities and hear their concerns.

While this is a difficult time for the Postal Service, I look forward to continue working with you to put the organization on a sustainable and competitive path while protecting rural communities.

Max Baucus
U.S. Senator

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