Recent Press Releases

Washington, DC —  Senator John Thune introduced legislation today that would require the U.S. Government Accounting Office (GAO) to submit a report to Congress on the compliance of the United States Postal Service (USPS) with the procedural requirements in the decision to close the postal sorting facility in Aberdeen. The legislation also directs the GAO to review the 1993 GAO report which found that the USPS overstated its findings in an attempt to close the Aberdeen postal facility.

"This is an important next step in making sure that every effort is taken to ensure that the Aberdeen sorting facility is treated fairly and appropriately in the decision making process," said Thune. "This bill will ensure accountability to USPS customers and that changes that may have taken place since 1993 are considered. This needs to be an open, transparent process so that patrons are fully informed of the changes that have taken place and know the potential impact it may have on area mail service."

The USPS has been conducting Area Mail Processing feasibility studies across the United States to determine the efficiency of the postal service. USPS has proposed moving the Aberdeen Mail Processing Center to the Dakota Central Processing and Distribution Center in Huron under these studies.

On May 10, Senator Thune joined Senators Collins, Lieberman, and Harkin and Congressmen Davis and Waxman in requesting the GAO review the USPS's consolidations of operations and processing facilities and asked that they update their report: "USPS: The Service's Strategy for Realigning its Mail Processing Infrastructure Lacks Clarity, Criteria, and Accountability."

In April, Senator Thune worked with the USPS to obtain an audit on services currently offered by the USPS Center to give Aberdeen residents a chance to see the effects of the proposed plan to move services to the Dakota Processing Center.

On February 3rd, Senator Thune wrote a congressional delegation letter to the Postmaster General, John E. Potter, requesting that mail processing services remain in Aberdeen and on February 9th held a conference call with USPS Senior Vice President for Operations, Bill Galligan, urging the USPS to hold a public meeting to hear from USPS customers. The USPS agreed to this meeting which was held in Aberdeen on February 23rd with the Dakotas District Manager, Clem Felchle, on hand to provide information about the Area Mail Processing Feasibility Study.

In November 2005, Senator Thune sent a letter to Mr. Thomas Day, USPS Senior Vice President of Government Relations, requesting the USPS service for Aberdeen remain as currently operating.

"The importance of timely mail service in rural states cannot be underestimated," said Thune. "Ultimately, disruptions in delivery routines could prove to be detrimental to area businesses and regional economic development efforts. I will remain committed to ensuring that this matter is not taken lightly."