Priceless New Deal mural from former Ukiah Post Office is returned to the city — in the mail

SteveBlog

Ukiah mural

Ukiah Daily Journal: The city of Ukiah got an early Christmas present this month when the mural that used to hang in the former downtown Post Office was finally returned.

“It came in the mail in a big tube,” said Tami Bartolomei, Community Services administrator for the city, explaining that she did not open the package, but immediately gave it to someone with much more experience in dealing with valuable works of art.

“Thank goodness we have the experts at the Grace Hudson Museum to oversee the process,” Bartolomei said.

Those experts include museum Director Sherri Smith-Ferri, who said that the mural was “only painted on canvas, so it was rolled up and shipped to Chicago” when the United States Postal Service closed its location on North Oak Street in 2012 and put the building up for sale…

Smith-Ferri said the USPS paid for the restoration of the mural and to have it returned to Ukiah and installed.  Read more.

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Communities and Postal Workers United calls for protests on Inauguration Weekend

SteveBlog

Protesters hold signs during a protest against the election of President-elect Donald Trump, Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016, in downtown Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

All Out for Massive Labor-Community Protests – Inauguration Weekend Jan. 20-22

Call to Action – Let’s build a nationwide United Front against Trump

by Communities and Postal Workers United & Community-Labor United for Postal Jobs and Services

The election of Donald Trump is dangerous for all working people, including and especially immigrants, people of color, women, LGBTQ people and the disabled.  Postal workers and customers can expect stepped-up assaults on our public postal service.

A president Trump, coupled with Republican control of the House and Senate, raises the very real possibility of his appointment of a reactionary Postal Board of Governors seeking to further dismantle and privatize the USPS; an employer-friendly National Labor Relations Board which could reverse the gains of past years; a conservative Supreme Court hostile to public sector unions; and an anti-union, anti-worker Department of Labor.  National “Right-to-Work” legislation, which would be a major blow to the labor movement, is a top priority of the new administration. This would hurt the growing national movement for $15 and a union.

A Trump presidency threatens the deportation of millions of undocumented workers; the exclusion, surveillance, profiling and incarceration of our Muslim sisters and brothers; major restrictions on women’s reproductive rights; the return of anti-LGBTQ laws; and increased harassment, brutalizing, and incarceration of Black and Brown people by local police departments. It threatens to support environmentally dangerous projects like the Dakota pipeline, and repression of the Indigenous Nations who are fighting it.

Tax cuts for the rich and even more funds to the military (making another war more likely) will be used to justify austerity, with deep cuts to Medicaid, Social Security, food stamps, education, housing and other programs that working people need to survive. The Trump victory has emboldened racist, sexist, homophobic and xenophobic predators who are intimidating and assaulting our most vulnerable residents.

Spontaneous “Not My President” demonstrations have erupted across the country immediately following the Trump election.  Many student, labor, community and women’s groups are planning for massive protests on the weekend of Trump’s Inauguration, January 20-22, in Washington, D.C. and other cities.

To save our public postal service and living-wage, union postal jobs, we will need to help build a national United Front of all those threatened by the Trump presidency, in the spirit of An Injury to One is an Injury to All.

We will need to mobilize our networks, in collaboration with other labor, school, faith, community and women’s groups, to encourage and participate in organizing large and small actions leading up to and including Inauguration Weekend, as part of a nationwide united movement against Trump and all he represents.

All out for Inauguration Weekend, January 20-22, 2017!

Communities and Postal Workers United – cpwunited.com

Community-Labor United for Postal Jobs and Services – clupjs.wordpress.com

 

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Producer Joel Silver’s Venice Post Office becomes “Eyesore” and Activists Cry Foul

SteveBlog

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Hollywood Reporter: When Joel Silver purchased the iconic Venice Post Office building in 2012, the producer of The Matrix and Lethal Weapon films told elected officials that converting the 1939 building into the headquarters of Silver Pictures would result in jobs, free arts-related programs and the preservation of historical features — including the famous Story of Venice mural that adorned the building’s entry for 70 years.

Four years on, Silver’s pledge has become a debacle. The structure at 1601 Main St. is covered in graffiti and scaffolding. Signs warn squatters to keep out.

“It’s an eyesore,” says Teddy, a tattoo artist and barber who works across the street and who regularly sees people urinating and defecating at the site. “I don’t know what’s going on over there.”

As the post office deteriorates, it has helped secure a new line of credit for Silver, long considered one of Hollywood’s most high-flying and controversial producers, with a trail of enemies and former business associates who claim he stiffed them. Read more.

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Rumors fly about losing downtown post office in Bowling Green, KY

SteveBlog

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WBKO: Customers at the downtown post office in Bowling Green, Kentucky, have been told that branch may not be an option sometime in the near future.

Former mayor of Bowling Green, Elaine walker posted on Facebook that she was told that location would be shutting down.  She says closing down that location could be catastrophic.  Walker is worried that removing this post office would stunt the growth downtown is currently experiencing.

“The focus is on bringing people to shop, to live, to really restore that vibrancy downtown,” she says “The concept of us losing our post office is really devastating.”

The Postal Service has neither confirmed nor denied the closing of this particular branch, but a number of sources close to the negotiations say they have reason to believe it’s true.

One postal worker says customers have been asking about the rumors, but they’re just as much in the dark as the customers.That same postal worker, Elaine Walker says it worries her that the process is so secretive.

“I guess I’m very concerned because it’s being done quietly,” she says. “Clearly they don’t want us to object to this action.”

[The downtown Bowling Green post office on E. 11th Street was built in 1972, and the property is owned by the USPS.  If it is sold, the Postal Service could conceivably relocate to a smaller, leased facility downtown, or discontinue the post office completely and direct customers to the branch on Scottsville Road, about five miles away.] Read more.

(Photo credit: S Bahnsen, PMCC)

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OIG says Postal Service outsources billions on contractor studies, with no process to store or share results

SteveBlog

oig-contractor-report

USPS OIG: The U.S. Postal Service paid over $5.6 billion for contracts under the commercial products and services portfolio between fiscal years (FY) 2009 and 2015. This portfolio purchases a range of goods and services, including strategic consulting, logistics and fulfillment, market research and brand management, and financial and accounting services.

The OIG found that the Postal Service did not effectively manage external studies. There is no formal process to identify and catalog the universe of external studies. As a result, over a 6-week period, the Postal Service could not locate 30 of 97 requested studies, and the Postal Service also did not have a formal, consistent process to store, share, and retain external study results.  Read more.

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