May 10, 2012 6:44 AM by Kate Richards

Rural Post Offices to remain open

The United States Postal Office plans not to close as many as 3,700 low-revenue post offices.

Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe says the agency will maintain a part-time post-office presence in rural areas, with access to retail lobbies and post office boxes.

With a new plan, no post office would be closed, but more than 13,000 rural facilities could reduce hours of operations between two and six hours.

Another option for communities would be to close a post office in one area, while keeping a nearby one open full time. Another alternative, would be creating a Village Post Office, where postal services are offered in libraries, government offices or local stores.

U.S.P.S says it expects to save more money from the new plan, partly by weeding out full-time postmasters and replacing them with part-time workers. It plans to offer buyouts for the some 21,000 postmasters.

The agency has forecast a record loss of more than $14 billion by the end of the year. Without changes, it says losses will exceed $21 billion by 2016.



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