Tester announces Butte, Helena and Wolf Point mail facilities to stay open

Senator calls on House to pass his bipartisan postal reform bill

(U.S. SENATE) – Senator Jon Tester today announced that the U.S. Postal Service’s mail processing facilities in Butte, Helena and Wolf Point will stay open.

Tester worked to keep the facilities open to preserve timely mail service in rural Montana and to protect over 170 Montana postal workers from losing their jobs.

Tester, who sits on the committee that oversees the Postal Service, successfully passed a bipartisan postal reform bill through the Senate in April.  The U.S. Postal Service is currently using the bill as a blueprint to save money while ensuring that more of Montana’s postal facilities remain open.

The Postal Service had previously planned to close these processing facilities, but the Postmaster agreed to follow the Senate’s proposal for at least the next two years.

“Rural Montanans told the Postal Service how important these facilities are, and these facilities are now staying open,” Tester said.  “It’s time for the House to pass our reform bill and give some much-needed certainty to postal workers and the folks who rely on timely service to receive their letters, package, prescriptions and mail ballots.”

Tester’s bill now awaits a vote in the House of Representatives.

The Postal Service today announced that Kalispell’s mail processing facility will be consolidated with the facility in Missoula beginning in 2013.  Tester said he will keep fighting to keep the Kalispell facility open. 

“The Postal Service’s decision to close Kalispell is unfortunate,” Tester continued.  “This shows how important it is that the House passes the Senate bill that will bring more people into the decision-making process and keep the Postmaster General from closing facilities on his own.”

Tester’s bill will give the Postal Regulatory Commission the authority to approve cuts proposed by the Postal Service.