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[February 08, 2013]
Some North Shore residents give thumbs up to canceling Saturday mail delivery
Feb 08, 2013 (Chicago Tribune - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) -- North Shore residents seemed to take in stride the U. S. Postal Service's recent announcement that by August it would cancel first-class mail delivery on Saturdays.
The postal service lost nearly $16 million last fiscal year trying to compete with increasingly popular online communication and other carriers. It will keep open on Saturday the offices that are now open that day, and it will still deliver packages six days per week. But canceling Saturday mail delivery is expected to save the agency about $2 billion a year.
Postal officials previously said they needed permission from Congress to make the changes but now believe they may be able to take some action without new legislation.
Many area residents interviewed after the announcement said they had been expecting the cutback, some adding that it seemed a natural direction for the agency to take.
"They've been talking about it for a while," said Wilmette resident Ela Djordjevic, 60, who visits the post office once every two weeks.
Djordjevic said she would feel bad for the postal service's employees who work on Saturdays.
But like many other residents, Djordjevic said she isn't likely to be affected by the change.
"It doesn't really matter whether (the mail) comes Monday or Saturday," said Tom Morrison, who owns a tree company in Wilmette.
Although he has heard the postal service mention possible cuts to its delivery before, he said there may be a pang of loss after it's gone.
"In a way, I'll miss it," said Morrison, referring to checking mail on Saturdays. "I guess the email thing is killing them." In the end, Morrison, 75, a Glenview resident, said the agency has to take some sort of measures to save money and survive.
Winnetka resident Denise Smith echoed Morrison.
"It's unfortunate that they're getting rid of one these perks," Smith said. "But I guess it's what they have to do to stay competitive." Smith said it'd be interesting to see what some people will use as the alternative if they need to deliver an urgent letter on a Saturday.
Some locals who buy and sell on the Internet said the cancellation of Saturday delivery might present some challenge.
Gerri Menn, a Northbrook resident who sells vintage items online on eBay, Etsy.com and other websites, uses the post office often to send goods to her customers.
"It will affect me," said Menn, 59, adding that she'll have to account for one extra day when sending out deliveries. "I don't know by how much though. We'll have to wait and see." But some environment-conscious locals expressed excitement.
Beth Drucker, a Wilmette resident, said she is happy about the postal service's plans.
"To me, it's a logical thing," said Drucker, while checking her organization's mail on a recent afternoon. "Much of what's critical we're getting through email these days anyway." As a member of Go Green Wilmette, Ducker said she is looking forward to the postal service reducing its fuel and energy usage.
"That's a really good idea," Drucker said. "They can't continue the way they have been." firstname.lastname@example.org ___ (c)2013 the Chicago Tribune Visit the Chicago Tribune at www.chicagotribune.com Distributed by MCT Information Services
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