Hold on Postal closings legislation advances

The Senate on Wednesday approved legislation that would slow -- and in some cases halt -- the U.S. Postal Service’s effort to close post offices and other facilities, including the mail processing center in Duluth.

The Duluth News-Tribune reports a 62-37 vote sent a strong bipartisan message that, though the system is ailing financially, it’s not good politics, especially in an election year, to take a scythe to popular parts of the Postal Service. Sen. Al Franken said that the bill would directly affect Duluth.

“I’m relieved to announce that the Duluth processing center will likely remain open,” Franken said. It would save the 100 jobs there and ease fears about increased mailing costs for businesses.

Franken said it didn’t make sense that mail sent in Duluth to another part of the city should have to be sent to St. Paul for processing.

“Processing centers are key to ensuring timely delivery of everything from newspapers to prescriptions,” he said.
Franken asked for a moratorium on any closings until May 15 so work could be done on the bill.