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MINOT, N.D. (KXNET) — The United State Postal Service is instrumental in providing key services across the nation, but mail delivery services may not be at their most functional right now.
Sen. John Hoeven, Minot Mayor Tom Ross and United States Postal Service officials held a discussion about postal delivery problems throughout the region on Wednesday.
USPS is said to battling challenges from staffing shortages to insufficient funds. Officials discussed efforts to ensure USPS continues to address service issues and workforce needs.
“Between April and Memorial Day, there have been days where letters and flats were not delivered. And we just had nobody to do it. And in fact, management delivers mail. The supervisors and the postmaster deliver mail, just to try to get it delivered. I wish we could be perfect, but Minot is one of eight offices that I have that struggle so much with a compliment that we have to make sure that we get them the help that they need so they can get it every day,” said Anthony Williams, USPS service district manager.
Throughout the Minot area, people have repeatedly expressed concerns about the inconsistency of receiving mail and many other issues they are facing.
Frequent complaints include their mail arriving after 6 p.m., having mail delivered to the wrong house, failure to attempt to deliver packages and, sometimes, not receiving mail at all.
“I’ve gotten so many at my house that is my number, but it’s the next street over or two blocks over. And it’s just kind of irritating that I’ve had packages go missing, and being like where the heck is this? And I’ve had to look in my neighborhood for packages,” said Rebecca Lowei.
Williams said the main focus for the Minot area is hiring more postal drivers.
Minot is 18 drivers short of being fully staffed, but 10 employees are in the hiring process.
Williams says his goal is to have 95% on-time delivery and to have the area fully staffed by the beginning of September for the election and holiday season.
He added, “Things are looking up. But when we get those people, when the volume increases a little bit, that’s going to put us in a position to where it doesn’t matter what time of the year, the service will get more consistent.”
In April, President Joe Biden signed the Postal Service Reform Act which is set to allocate nearly $50 billion to the United States Postal Service over the next 10 years to provide support to mail problems.