Rumors Abound of Jacksonville, NY, Post Office Closing

SteveBlog

ithaca.com: The Jacksonville, NY, Post Office is a small, unassuming building that you wouldn’t know was there until it was pointed out to you. But to many neighbors in Jacksonville it is a community cornerstone. Recently, rumors have begun to spread that the post office will soon be closing its doors, and residents are worried about the impact this might have locally. Currently, the post office is in lease negotiations with the property owners, Blue Ox Energy. The current lease is up at the end of December.

Blue Ox Energy also owns and operates the Valero gas station next to the post office. David Martin, Vice President of Blue Ox, said he believes the property was acquired in the mid-1990s, and when the company bought the gas station the post office came with it. Martin said he has seen these negotiations for many years and they are often a cumbersome process.

“We don’t want to upset the neighborhood,” Martin said. “A third party represents the post office and each time the lease ran out they lowered the offer they were willing to pay, and increased expenses we would have to pay.” Martin said the expenses that Blue Ox, as the landowners, pay are usually maintenance type stuff, and as the building gets older the maintenance gets more expensive….

Karen Mazurkiewicz, spokesperson for United States Postal Service for western New York, said that it is her understanding that USPS is taking steps to renew the lease, but if the post office were to close the community wouldn’t be left stranded. If the post office were to close USPS would put together an emergency suspension. Read more.

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Neighbors concerned over fate of post office in Little Rock

SteveBlog

THV11.com: Neighbors in the Heights community of Little Rock, Arkansas, have been very upset the last few days after hearing from their letter carriers that the area’s post office may close.

The U.S. Postal Service rents the Forest Park Station property at 5420 Kavanaugh Boulevard from a local business man.  The lease is coming up, and there were questions and concerns about whether or not the Postal Service would renew that lease, because the cost is also up.

“People move into this area of town because of the amenities it has. Having a great post office with good staff is certainly important to people,” said Norman Hodges, President of the Heights Neighborhood Association. “For all the businesses, the residents, what have you, it is a very busy office. If you’ve ever been around here and looked very much, it is constantly busy, so it would be a real detriment.”

That group has appealed to local, state, and even national leaders to help them save the post office.  Read more.

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Closure of post office in Kansas City forces residents to visit other branches for mail

SteveBlog

fox4kc: Most of us have heard the post office motto: neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night keeps mail carriers from their appointed rounds, but when it comes to people who have post office boxes at the Country Club Station in Brookside (a neighborhood of Kansas City, MO), something is stopping them from getting their mail.

There is a sign on the door notifying customers that the U.S. Postal Service has implemented an emergency suspension on the Country Club Station location, directing folks to the Waldo location on Gregory Boulevard.

Some people took the news in stride, while others are upset about the changes….

Dean Petrus who also has a P.O. Box in Brookside went to the Waldo location to find out what is going on.

“They told me that they are moving all of the post office boxes from this location to the Gregory location. In fact, they were doing that while I was there,”Petrus said. “All of the post office boxes for zip code 64114 are being moved to Martin City at 135th Street.”…

A spokesperson with the Postal Service could not confirm the Waldo boxes will be moved to Martin City.

The U.S.P.S sent out the following statement regarding the Country Club Station Post Office closure: “As a result of a recent safety inspection at the leased facility, retail and delivery services located at the Country Club Station have been moved to the Waldo Post Office located at 119 W. Gregory St. 1.1 miles away. There is no time table for reopening at his time.”

According to the news video, the building has apparently suffered water damage and perhaps a mold problem.  Read more.

(Photo: Google Street View of Country Club Station)

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Postal Service to Discuss Post Offices in Hartland, VT

SteveBlog

Officials with the United States Postal Service are looking to bring a third post office back to Hartland, Vermont — in some form, anyway.

Later this month, a representative with the Postal Service will be holding a public meeting to solicit possible sites for a retail postal facility to replace the one in Hartland Four Corners that closed in late 2015.

The part-time post office on Route 12 was closed because of several safety and sanitation issues in the leased building. There are two other post offices in the town of 3,400 residents, one at the Three Corners intersection on Route 5, a little more than a mile away, and one in North Hartland, also on Route 5.

Kurtis Bullard, a real estate specialist with the USPS, said this week the meeting at 5:30 p.m. on Nov. 20 at Damon Hall is intended to initiate conversations with Hartland residents about potential locations.

“This starts the community process,” Bullard said from his office in Greensboro, N.C. “We are coming up to see what might be available. Anyone with a piece of property can submit an offer to the post office.”  Read more.

(Photo: Google Street View of former post office in Harland Four Corners, VT)

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In split decision, PRC rejects appeal on closing of Rio Nido, CA, post office

SteveBlog

The fight appears over to save the neighborhood post office in Rio Nido, Calif., after U.S. Postal Regulatory Commissioners have deadlocked on closure last June of the century-old post office on Rio Nido Road.

A deadline this week may mark the end of a Rio Nido community appeal of the sudden shutdown when postal officials said the tiny post office was a consistent money-loser, locked the doors and moved operations to Guerneville.

Last month, U.S. Postal Regulatory Commissioners were split in a 2-2 vote over the merits of a neighborhood protest of the closing. The deadlock means Rio Nido loses and the U.S. Postal Service wins in its decision unless Rio Nido residents take some new legal action before a Oct. 27 deadline.

 “My clients still have some remedies,” said Occidental attorney Joe Baxter, who filed the protest petition on behalf of the Friends of Rio Nido and the Rio Nido Neighborhood Association. “They’re considering their options.”

The deadlocked postal commission vote indicated support for Rio Nido’s argument that their local post office provided the “sole source of mail delivery” for approximately 1,000 Rio Nido postal customers who don’t get carrier delivery to their residences and instead rely on the local post office to get mail, buy stamps and send letters.

However, postal officials contended that providing home delivery to Rio Nido would be too costly and otherwise problematic owing to Rio Nido’s substandard and flood-prone narrow winding roads.

But two Postal Regulatory Commissioners disagreed, saying the postal service has failed to make a convincing argument why it can’t simply deliver mail to Rio Nido postal customers the same way it serves the rest of the lower Russian River — by having carriers put mail in stand-alone curbside mailboxes or “cluster box units” installed in a convenient neighborhood location.  Read more.

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Local tech company to occupy historic Union Square post office in Somerville, MA

SteveBlog

thesomervilletimes.com: The historic Union Square Post Office building in Somerville, MA, will soon be home to RightHand Robotics, a local technology company that grew out of a team of researchers from Harvard, Yale and MIT.

RightHand Robotics is a leader in end-to-end solutions that reduce the cost of e-commerce order-fulfillment across industries, bringing the latest technological developments from the lab to the warehousing industry….

The Union Square Post Office was bought in 2014 by Union Square Partners LLC, which is run by Don Law, president of Live Nation New England. A designated Local Historic District, the building is a protected landmark dating from 1935 and is listed on the National Historic Register.  Read more.

(As reported in a Boston Globe article about the sale back in 2014, the Somerville post office building contains a mural by Ross Moffett, a popular artist who lived in Provincetown.  “His 1937 mural, ‘A Skirmish Between British and Colonists Near Somerville in Revolutionary Times,” depicting a clash that helped ignite the Revolutionary War, still graces the wall of the post office in Somerville’s Union Square.”

When the sale of the post office was first announced, Mr. Law promised to preserve the painting, and according to preservation covenants on post offices, New Deal murals are supposed to be available for public viewing.  Yesterday’s article in the Somerville Times says nothing about what kind of access the public will have to the painting.)

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