The Bloomington mail processing facility consolidation wraps this month. (Ryan Denham/WJBC)
By Stephanie Pawlowski
BLOOMINGTON - As the Postal Service starts the next cost cutting measure, last year's consolidation efforts are wrapping up.
USPS Spokeswoman Beverly Howard said that includes the consolidation of the Bloomington processing facility into Peoria and Champaign.
"The last leg of the consolidation was to take all of the originating 617 volume mail and send it to Peoria, and that's going to be happening Feb. 23," Howard said.
Earlier this month, the USPS announced it would no longer deliver mail on Saturdays in order to trim costs. The plan is set to take effect in August and save the service $2 billion annually. The Postal Service suffered a $15.9 billion loss in the last budget year.
The consolidation plan was announced in May 2012 and was proposed to save more than $1.2 billion nationwide, annually.
The Bloomington center had about 158 employees. Howard said retirements helped trim 25 jobs. Other employees transferred to the Peoria or Champaign facilities. She said there are about eight jobs left that have to transfer.
First class mail is moving slower because of the consolidation. When residents would drop an envelope in the mail in Bloomington-Normal, Howard said it would be processed that day and delivered the next.
"There's no next day, within the city limits, for that mail to be turned around. And that's what the consolidation is all about," Howard said.