Montana Public Radio: Tester, Daines oppose plan to move Missoula’s mail processing services

by Edward F. O’Brien

Both Montana’s U.S. Senators oppose a proposal that could result in Missoula’s outgoing mail processing services being moved out of state.

Republican Sen. Steve Daines Tuesday fired off a letter to Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, urging that the U.S. Postal Service keep Missoula’s Processing and Distribution Center right where it is.

Democratic Sen. Jon Tester this week slammed the review that could result in Missoula’s mail processing operations being moved to Spokane. Both senators said relocating the sorting services would likely lead to delays, lower customer satisfaction and even job losses.

Robert Hopp is President of the Missoula Chapter of the American Postal Workers Union Local #113. Hopp said the bipartisan support is a huge relief.

“I don’t think the fight’s over yet. We’re not going to risk it. We’re going to keep pushing and keep getting petitions signed and keep getting out to the public,” Hopp said.

Missoula’s sorting center was one of dozens across the country recently selected to see if it could be updated for efficiency.

The Postal Service said moving the services would not result in career employee layoffs and delivery services would not be adversely affected.

A Seattle-based USPS spokesperson tells MTPR more details about the review will be shared in the coming weeks, adding the agency will respond directly to Sen. Daines and Sen. Tester about their concerns.