USPS changes hours of operations for post offices to save money

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BRYAN COUNTY,OK -- Residents learned the fate of their local post offices in two separate town meetings Friday.

"It's a loss. It's a real loss. It's a degrading loss really," said local resident Charles Davis.

Friday morning, dozens of residents showed up to the Cartwright Post Office; not to send mail, but to to receive a message.

Officials from the U.S Postal Service say the Cartwright Postmaster will go from a full time to part time employee and the hours of operation at the post office will be cut in half; from eight hours a day to four.

The facility will be open from 8am til noon once the changes take effect, which could be as early as October.

The Postal Service says the reduction in hours was based on the amount of traffic and money the site brings in.

"We're facing a financial challenge right now," said Arlene Sanchez.

USPS representative Arlene Sanchez says over the past five years,
the entire Postal Service has experienced a 27% drop and nearly 400 million fewer visits at stores nationwide.

"They're just not being used. We've had a decline in retail visits; in customer retail visits," said Sanchez.

Sanchez says customers are finding alternate ways to send their mail, buy stamps, envelopes, and other packing products.

She says, in Oklahoma, the Postal Service has identified 314 offices that may face reduced hours or close.

244 of those have already had their hours cut.

"All they're trying to do is save money for themselves; they're not worried about us," said local resident Charles Adams.

Charles Adams says people need the post office to be open.

"Been here for 69 years, and we've always had a post office that worked from seven to four or five in the afternoon; always," said Adams.

Hours of operation at the Mead Post Office will also be reduced.

They will be open from 7:30am til 2pm. USPS would not confirm when the reduction will occur, but say it could be October.

"A lot of people don't realize; just every stamp they buy here keeps this post office open or helps," said Mead resident Sheliah Elliot.

Post offices in Dodd City, Texas and Ector, Texas will also see similar cutbacks.

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