Richmond, VA post office closed due to mold concerns

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WRIC: A Richmond post office has been closed since Friday due to a “mold issue.”The post office located at 3004 North Avenue in Richmond closed after local officials became aware of the problem Friday.The building is temporarily closed and a sign on the front door cites “environmental reasons.”

United States Postal Service information officer Michell Martel said that residents who have mail delivered from that location will not be impacted by the closing.Martel did say that the closure will impact people with post office boxes at that location. For the time being, those with PO Boxes in the North Avenue location can pick up their mail at the Bellview Post Office. Read more.

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Feds file lawsuit over Berkeley’s main post office

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Berkeleyside: Berkeley’s attempt to limit commercial development of the Main Post Office conflicts with federal law and should be overturned, a lawsuit filed in federal court Monday by the U.S. Postal Service declares. When Berkeley passed the Civic Center Overlay in September 2014, limiting the post office and eight other buildings to civic uses such as museums, libraries and performance halls, it violated the supremacy clause of the United States Constitution, said the lawsuit.

The law was “enacted primarily to prevent the sale of the Berkeley Main Post Office,” according to the lawsuit. “The shape of the Zoning Ordinance confirms that it was designed to regulate the Berkeley Main Post Office rather than to preserve the character of a neighborhood in the City. Within a given block, certain buildings are included, while others are not.” Before the overlay was passed, the Main Post Office could have been used for retail or high-density residential.

The lawsuit is only the latest twist in the long-running saga between USPS and the city of Berkeley. The postal service put the landmarked historic post office at 2000 Allston Way up for sale in 2012. It contended that the building was underutilized as the postal service only used 4,000 square feet of the 57,000-square foot building. Federal officials proposed shuttering the large building and consolidating operations in a smaller rented space in downtown Berkeley.  Read more.

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National Park Service Celebrates Centennial

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National Park ServiceOn August 25, 2016, the National Park Service turns 100!  The centennial will celebrate the achievements of the past 100 years, but it is really about the future. It’s about kicking off a second century of stewardship for America’s national parks and for communities across the nation.  Most importantly, it’s about inviting you to join us. We all have a role to play in ensuring that future generations of Americans will be able to enjoy the thrilling experiences of nature and wildlife, history and culture, and the spirit of adventure that is waiting at every national park.  Read more.

In celebration of the National Parks, the Postal Service has introduced a new series of stamps.

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Postal operations continue in wake of California infernos

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USPS News LinkThe Postal Service is continuing to deliver mail and packages in California despite a series of devastating fires sweeping through the state.  In Northern California, a blaze destroyed 175 homes and businesses and prompted the Lower Lake Post Office to temporarily re-locate to nearby Clearlake.

“People are scared,” said Lower Lake Postmaster Ben Lovato.The community suffered a major fire last year that Lovato said “was devastating to a lot of people in this area. … Seeing this again brings up a lot of mixed emotions.”

A second fire along California’s central coast has scorched 70,000 acres, destroyed 57 homes and killed one firefighter.

“That is a lot for our small community to absorb,” said Big Sur Postmaster Andrew Luersen, who has worked to clear his Post Office of brush and branches.  Fire also is sweeping through Southern California’s San Bernardino County, prompting the closures of the Wrightwood and Lytle Creek Post Offices.  The USPS Service Alerts page has the latest information on closures.

Employees in affected areas are encouraged to use the national emergency hotline number, 888-363-7462, to stay in touch.The Postal Employees Relief Fund and Employee Assistance Program can provide assistance to employees who have suffered losses.

Source: Through the fire | USPS News Link

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Prattsburgh, NY Post Office closed indefinitely over safety concerns

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WETM-TV: The Prattsburgh, N.Y., Post Office closed last month due to building safety concerns. Since then the Pulteney office has swiftly taken over, but nevertheless some customers can expect changes when it comes to getting their mail.

“Obviously our first concern is to make sure that we are able to provide for the needs of the community. So for those who have street delivery the carriers are still delivering to their addresses. There should be very little interruption,” says Karen Mazurkiewicz, a representative for United States Postal Service Corporate Communications.

“Customers who get their mail through a P.O. Box, they do in fact need to make the trip to a Pulteney to retrieve their mail,” she says. A section of Route 53 is closed surrounding the post office.

Prattsburgh Town Supervisor Leonard McConnell says it has a ripple effect on the community. “It’s not easy, it’s not going to be easy for a while, but hopefully we’ll get it fixed,” McConnell says.  “Like all small towns it’s not only a service but it’s a gathering place. It’s especially for some of our older people to have to get to Pulteney to get mail, that’s a hardship,” he says.

McConnell says the biggest issue with the building are the floor joists. He says he believes the building will be torn down rather than repaired.  Read more.

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