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US Postal Service to cut Saturday mail delivery by August

The USPS is expected to phase out Saturday mail deliveries by August 1.

Usps saturday mail Enlarge
Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe speaks during a press conference at U.S. Postal Service headquarters February 6, 2013 in Washington, DC. The US Postal Service will stop Saturday mail delivery beginning in August, but will still offer parcel delivery six days a week in a plan aimed at saving approximately $2 billion annually. (Win McNamee/AFP/Getty Images)

The US Postal Service will begin phasing out mail deliveries on Saturdays, it announced Wednesday. 

Mail deliveries on the weekends will come to a stop August 1, though packages will continue to be delivered — unless Congress vetoes the move. 

In the past, Congress has prohibited a five-day delivery schedule, but the USPS has taken a hit of billions of dollars in losses in recent years, and the move would shave off $2 billion a year from the Postal Service's budget and cost 22,500 jobs, according to the Washington Post.

In 2012 alone, the USPS saw a $15.9 billion loss. 

Post Office officials are expected to announce a sweeping plan to cut costs later on Wednesday, the Wall Street Journal reported

“America’s mailing habits are changing and so are their shipping habits,” Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe said, ABC News reported

“The American public understands the financial challenges of the Postal Service and supports these steps as a responsible and reasonable approach to improving our financial situation,” Donahoe added. “The Postal Service has a responsibility to take the steps necessary to return to long-term financial stability and ensure the continued affordability of the US Mail.”

However, many Americans who depend on Saturday mail, as well as Post Office workers, are opposed to the change. 

Ending Saturday delivery "would be particularly harmful to small businesses, rural communities, the elderly, the disabled and others who depend on Saturday delivery for commerce and communication," said Fredric Rolando, president of the National Association of Letter Carriers, a union representing many mail carriers, according to the Wall Street Journal. 

More from GlobalPost: Junk mail is the US Postal Service’s latest hope for boosting revenue

 

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/united-states/130206/us-postal-service-cut-saturday-mail-delivery-august