Monday, December 19, 2011


Tucson - On Wednesday, December 28, the United States Postal Service (USPS) will be holding a public hearing in Tucson on whether to close Tucson mail sorting facility and moving that service to the Phoenix facility.

This hearing will be held at the Leo Rich Theater, 260 South Church, beginning at 6:00 p.m.

Tucson’s Processing and Distribution Center, located at 1600 South Cherrybell Stravenue is one of many facilities being studied for possible closure under the direction of the current U.S. Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe. 

Currently, more than 1,000,000 pieces of mail a year is being processed by the Cherrybell Post Office.

Up to 400 jobs are in possible jeopardy with this potential closure of this facility by the USPS.

“This would be a substantial setback to the effort to rebuild Tucson’s economy,” said Councilmember Richard Fimbres. “In addition, this would also hurt businesses who rely on the distribution center, the elderly who may pay bills by mail or wait for their Social Security checks and medication,” he added.

Fimbres went on to say that, “If Tucson loses the Processing and Distribution Center, the effort to recruit companies to the area would be severely hampered, since the city would be one of the largest without a Distribution Center.” Tucson is the 33rd largest city in the United States, according to the Census Bureau.

“Government functions involving mailing items, people’s water bill, and electric bills and voting by mail would be impacted by this potential closure,” Fimbres said. “Small, local businesses that rely on mail order service could close if Tucson’s distribution center is moved to Phoenix.”

The proposed closure is only one item being considered by the USPS. The elimination of overnight service in the Tucson metro area as well as all of the 856 zip code areas is also on the table.

“This is not just a Tucson issue, it will affect all of Southern Arizona, its citizens, businesses and their governments,” Fimbres stated. “This would end overnight service as well as cause delays for the mail for Tucson and the Southern Arizona region.”

Councilmember Fimbres will be bringing this item for discussion by the Tucson Mayor and Council, at their meeting, Tuesday, December 20, during the Study Session, which is scheduled to start at 2:00 pm. Former Tucson Postmasters, Alvaro Alvarez and Arnold Elias will be present, as well Local 255 of the American Postal Workers Union.

At the December 28 meeting, The public will have the opportunity at this meeting to speak to the USPS management in attendance and give their feedback on the proposed shut-down of the Tucson mail sorting facility and moving that service to the Phoenix facility. 

USPS is also inviting their largest local business customers to the meeting so they can hear about the plan and its possible effects on their mailings.

The public may send their comments on this to the USPS. Comments will be accepted and postmarked by January 12, 2012. Written comments may be sent to: Management, Consumer and Industry Contact, Arizona District, P.O. Box, 21628, Phoenix, Arizona 85036-1628.