Residents frustrated by Evansdale Post Office closing - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Braley urges US Postmaster General to keep Evansdale office open

Posted:
EVANSDALE (KWWL) -

The major financial crunch at the US Postal Service is forcing another local post office to shut down.  The Evansdale Post Office will be closing for good on Friday.  Many in the community believe they weren't given fair warning.

Craig Chilton frequently uses his hometown post office in Evansdale.

"I'm a book publisher, and I use the post office all the time to ship out books and media.  So it's very important to me.  But my bigger concern is for the community, the elderly here," Chilton said.

Area residents like Chilton insist the Evansdale location sees more foot traffic than some other area post offices, making it tough to understand why the US Postal Service would choose to shut the facility down.

"I haven't been over for a while, but I thought, "Well, I better get some stamps while I'm still able to."  So I feel sorry for these people in town.  They're nice people.  They don't deserve this," said postal customer Margaret Walters of Waverly.

The Postal Service insists the Evansdale closure is needed as part of national cost-cutting measures.

"Because we're not tax supported, we've got to look at every penny because the money we're talking about saving isn't our money, it's our customers' money.  And as revenue continues to decline with a drop in mail volume, we'll continue to look for ways to save money, save our customers money but still provide the same services that we have," said Rich Watkins, USPS spokesperson.

Many folks in Evansdale are so frustrated about the post office closing because they feel they weren't given enough notice.  Many just learned about it closing when they found a note posted on the door.

Post office box holders like Chilton did receive a letter informing them of the impending closure.  But Chilton says that notice was only delivered about 50 days before the planned shut down, not the required 60 days.  The US Postal Service insists protocol was followed and that mail delivery won't be impacted when the post office goes away.  For folks in Evansdale, it's little comfort since they'll now have to drive at least 10 minutes one-way to Raymond or Waterloo to do their postal business.

Craig Chilton and Mayor Chad Deutsch have filed formal appeals with the US Postal Service. They're encouraging local residents to voice their concerns by calling area legislators or writing the Postal Regulatory Commission.  You can find that information here.

UPDATE:

Since our story aired, a representative from Congressman Bruce Braley's office contacted KWWL.  Braley has now sent letters to the US Postmaster General, the Iowa postal district manager, and the US Postal delivery and operations manager requesting that they review Mayor Deutsch's appeal and keep the Evansdale post office open.  You can read that letter at the left of this story.

Powered by Frankly