Tue May 29, 2012

USPS Announces Buyouts to 45,000 Mail Handlers in Colorado, U.S.

As part of an ongoing effort to cut costs, the U.S. Postal Service announced late Friday plans to offer buyouts to 45,000 mail handlers in Colorado and across the U.S.

The offer is voluntary and applies to handlers who work in USPS mail processing centers. Earlier this month, USPS announced the first round of closures, which will affect 140 processing centers between August 2012 and February 2013.

All six of Colorado’s locations were spared from that list.

David Rupert, spokesperson for USPS in Denver, says one goal is to create openings at mail processing centers that will continue operating past February 2013.

“With the idea that if some are at plants that will close, they might move to vacated positions,” he says. “It’s a way to create some movement for those employees that will be with us for a while.”

The voluntary buyout program will offer $15,000 to full-time mail handlers who sign up by July 2. The agreement requires that handlers leave or retire by August 31, 2012.

The question of how to reform the U.S. Postal Service was hotly contested by the U.S. Senate last month, which passed legislation.

It’s now up to the U.S. House to approve a companion measure. Post & Parcel reports that a debate is now scheduled for July on the topic.

Meantime, USPS spokesperson David Rupert says the clock is ticking and reform is needed. The USPS estimates it’s losing $26 million per day.

“It has public implications, and it has personal implications,” he says. “It’s something that every American ought to be concerned about.”