Augusta mail facility closing details expected this week

 

Details on the next step for closing the Augusta Mail Processing Facility are expected by the end of the week, U.S. Postal Service officials said Tuesday.

In February, the Postal Service announced plans to move mail processing and distribution out of Augusta and split that work between centers in Macon, Ga., and Columbia.

The Augusta closing is one of 223 planned across the nation, which Postal Service officials say will affect more than 30,000 postal workers and save about $2.1 billion a year.

The February announcement listed 13 other facility closings in Georgia, including Athens and Swainsboro, and one in South Carolina.

A date has not been set for the transition, but more information about the timeline for closing the facility could be made available Thursday, Postal Service spokesman Sam Bolen said.

Local employees will be informed before any announcement is released to the public, he said.

The Postal Service has yet to give the precise number of postal workers who will be affected by the move, but according to a recently released feasibility study, 102 workers and 10 supervisors will be eliminated by closing the Augusta processing center.

Those losses will be offset by gains in Macon and Columbia.

The Columbia facility will gain 31 positions, five of which will be supervisors. Macon will gain 63 jobs, including nine supervisors, according to the study. Some Augusta employees will be able to transfer to the other facilities, officials said.

The total cost savings for the first year was estimated at more than $3.5 million, the study said.

The study also mentions the possibility of closing the North Augusta Post Office and moving its letter carriers and responsibilities to the main Augusta Post Office. The North Augusta Post Office, however, is not on a national list of offices to close or to have reduced hours.

Bolen said Tuesday he was unsure whether closing the North Augusta Post Office was only a proposal or part of the plan to consolidate services in the Augusta area. He said information clarifying the matter should be made available this week.

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