Rally Held At Reno Post Office Sunday - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe News Weather, Video -

Rally Held At Reno Post Office Sunday

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Dozens of people gathered in Reno on Sunday to rally to protect Saturday mail delivery.

The local rally was put on by the Nevada State Association of Letter Carriers. It's all part of a nationwide effort. Groups are demanding that Congress deliver a better plan to strengthen the U.S. Postal Service for the future.

Last month, the Postal Service proposed to eliminate Saturday mail service this August, in order to stay financially stable. 

"Ultimately, it will be a disaster in the sense that, okay, if we don't repair things and we can take out Saturday delivery," said Mickey Grizzle, President of the Nevada State Association of Letter Carriers. "Then, what is the next day we are going to take out if things continue to slide?"

The Postal Service sent us this statement on the rally:

"We respect our employees right to speak out and we continue to look for long term relief to our fiscal difficulties... ...We will work closely with unions, management associations, customers and employees to ensure there is a smooth transition to the new schedule."

The Postal Service says it has lost $41 billion and has already cut 35 percent of its workforce over the last six years. Officials say cutting Saturday mail is expected to save them $2 billion a year.

"We're looking at a reduction of, the Postal Service's first number, they said was about 22,000," Grizzle said. "But, an independent study shows it's more like, 35,000 employees across the nation. Part of that is going to be some veterans and veterans that are coming back from Afghanistan and Iraq."

And, the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act of 2006 is also a costly concern. That act requires the Postal Service to pre-pay billions into a fund that covers decades of estimated costs in pensions and health care for future employees.

"No other company or federal agency does that," Grizzle said. "We've been doing it since the law was passed in 2006. Over 85 percent of the losses the Postal has taken is because of that."

Some believe the act needs to change, so cuts to services can be reduced or avoided.

The Government Accountability Office said the postal agency did not have the right to end Saturday mail on its own, and Congress has delayed the cutback in deliveries until the end of September.

The Postal Service says packages, Priority and Express Mail will still be delivered on Saturdays. 

Also, local post offices that are currently open on Saturdays will keep the same hours, so people with P.O. boxes shouldn't see a change.

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