“It’s 3 o’clock in the afternoon when everybody is working,” resident Georgia Lee Swickheimer said. “Nobody could come to this meeting to express their opinion.”
USPS Operations Manager Daniel Reyes informed those in attendance that the Fannin Post Office retail hours would be reduced to 7 to 9 a.m., Monday through Saturday. The current hours are 7 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Friday, and 7 to 9 a.m. on Saturday.
The new hours will go into effect no later than Jan. 10. The Fannin Post Office will remain unlocked from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. for residents to pick up their mail from post office boxes.
USPS mailed surveys to 93 customers in the Fannin area and 18 were returned. Options for the Fannin Post Office on the survey were realigning the facility’s hours, having mail delivered, creating a “village” post office in a local business or using a nearby post office. Sixteen of those surveyed preferred the realignment of hours.
Reyes was also asked who he was going to find to work just two hours a day.
“If we can’t find someone, we’ll send someone from a nearby office until we get someone hired,” Reyes said.
Reyes said first-class mail volume has dropped 25 percent over the last four years.
“Since 2006, we’ve realized a very significant drop or decline in first-class mail,” Reyes said. “A lot of that is due to other lines of communication. Customers can now pay bills by phone or online. Paper statements cost companies more money to process. Most of them pass that cost on to the customers.”
Reyes said USPS has lost approximately $5 billion per year over the last four years. USPS contemplated closing the Fannin Post Office and many other rural postal facilities in Texas in 2011, but chose to reduce the hours of operation instead after negative feedback from residents.