The U.S. Postal Service is launching a study into the customer needs of approximately 3,700 retail postal offices nationwide, including the , to determine whether or not to keep the postal stores open at these locations as the growing use of its online services continues to diminish the need for physical offices.
The USPS also announced in a statement Tuesday that while looking into the retail postal needs of these offices it will explore retail replacement options which could be used for the affected areas around the nation.
One option the USPS currently uses in areas which do not have a postal retail office is known as a Village Post Office, which is operated by local businesses such as grocery stores or pharmacies and other appropriate retailers who can offer postal products such as stamps and flat-rate packaging.
The statement did not indicate how the potential closing of retail post offices would affect postal delivery in those areas. Other retail post offices in the area being studied include the Fair Lawn River Road office, Wallington and Wood-Ridge.
At present, the USPS maintains approximately 31,000 retail outlets nationwide, down from 38,000 a decade ago. It lost $8 billion in 2010. In addition to closing offices, the agency has sharply reduced staff over the past several years in order to save money.
The USPS reported a loss of $2.2 billion in the last quarter and expects to run out of money by September, reports stated. The commission has explored several options to cut costs, including the elimination of Saturday delivery and office closures.
The Postal Service receives no tax dollars for operating expenses, and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations.