Chances are you’re reading this in a newspaper that was delivered by the Postal Service, and perhaps it was even delivered on a Saturday. If the Postal Service has its way, Saturday delivery of first-class letters, periodicals and standard mail will be eliminated beginning in August. Here in South Dakota, our postal service is critical to the way families and businesses operate, which is why I’m opposed to this short-sighted proposal.

There’s no doubt that the United States Postal Service (USPS) is facing some serious financial troubles. Last year, the USPS reported a loss of almost $16 billion. The proposal to cut Saturday delivery aims to save about $2 billion annually – nowhere close to covering the $16 billion deficit. It’s time for the Postal Service to make smart internal business decisions to fix their financial problems.

The real problem with the USPS is not the services they provide. Cutting essential services, like six day delivery, is only a small drop in a very large bucket of financial troubles. There are a host of structural reforms and ways to improve and modernize the USPS that could continue to provide quality services, while righting wrongs that have plagued the Postal Service for years.

South Dakota is home to over 300 postal facilities that serve central roles in our communities, and a lot of folks have expressed concern to me recently about what would happen if Saturday delivery is eliminated. I hope to see real, common sense reforms come from the USPS which will actually move delivery service to become more reliable, efficient and financially sound.

The bottom line is this: the Postal Service needs to address its internal issues before cutting services that directly affect South Dakota families and businesses. If you’re a rural newspaper that relies on Saturday delivery, or a resident who designates Saturdays as the day to pay bills, I hope you reach out to my office and share your story. I would love to hear from you. You can contact any of my offices listed below:

Sioux Falls: 605-275-2868 / Watertown: 605-878-2868 / Aberdeen:
605-262-2862 / Rapid City: 605-791-4673 / Washington, D.C.: 202-225-2801
/ Toll-Free: 1-855-225-2801

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