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Collins, Colleagues Continue to Press USPS to Reassess Planned Changes to Mail Delivery Networks Nationwide

Proposed changes include downgrading the Eastern Maine Mail Processing and Distribution Center in Hampden into a Local Processing Center

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senators Susan Collins, Gary Peters (D-MI), Jacky Rosen (D-NV), and Cynthia Lummis (R-WY) led a bipartisan group of 26 Senate colleagues in calling on the United States Postal Service (USPS) to pause planned changes to its processing and delivery network that could slow down mail delivery until the potential impacts are studied by the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) and any concerns raised are addressed by the Postal Service. Proposed changes include the conversion of the USPS Processing and Distribution Center in Hampden into a Local Processing Center, which would force outgoing mail processing to the Southern Maine Processing and Distribution Center in Scarborough, 130 miles south of the Hampden facility. Senator Angus King joined the bipartisan group of letter signatories.

In the letter, the Senators pressed USPS to request a comprehensive Advisory Opinion from the PRC that analyzes the full scope of the network changes including changes to local transportation and postal facilities across the nation before moving forward with any such changes.

“We call on USPS to pause all changes, pending a full study of this plan by its regulator. While USPS claims these changes overall will improve service while reducing costs, there is evidence to the contrary in locations where USPS has implemented changes so far,” wrote the Senators. “USPS must stop implementation, restore service in those areas where changes were implemented, and fully understand the nationwide effects of its plan on service and communities.” 

“The Postal Service’s primary responsibility is to provide timely and reliable delivery to every community across the nation,” the Senators continued. “While USPS must continue adapting as an agency to remain stable and serve the public’s current needs, it must proceed with caution and understand the implications of its plans in order to protect mail delivery for all communities.”  

Senator Collins has fought against proposed changes to the Hampden Plant since 2012, when she led the successful effort to halt a proposed complete closure of the Hampden plant.

Last month, Senators Collins and Joe Manchin (D-WV) led a bipartisan group of 22 Members of Congress, including Senator King and Representative Jared Golden, in sending a letter to United States Postmaster General Louis DeJoy opposing the USPS’ recent nationwide consolidation and review announcements.

In November 2023, she penned a letter to Postmaster General Louis DeJoy objecting to the proposal to consolidate outgoing operations of Maine’s two USPS processing facilities.  Senator Collins also provided comments for a public meeting on the proposal in February. Prior to this, Senator Collins wrote to Postmaster DeJoy several times, addressing concerns about delivery delays and workforce retention in Maine and across the national postal network. Additionally, she met with the USPS Inspector General last fall to discuss their examination of Postal Service quality in Southern Maine.  

The letter was also signed by Senators Michael Bennet (D-CO), Kevin Cramer (R-ND), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), John Barrasso (R-WY), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Steve Daines (R-MT), Kyrsten Sinema, (I-AZ), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), John Hoeven (R-ND), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Deb Fischer (R-NE), Jon Tester (D-MT), Roger Wicker (R-MS), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Mike Rounds (R-SD), Joe Manchin (D-WV), Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Pete Ricketts (R-NE), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), and John Cornyn (R-TX). 

The complete text of the letter can be read here.