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Lexington postal center appears to be off list of potential closings

Linda Planten-Lamoree emptied a cart of mail to start the sorting process at the postal service's processing center on Nandino Boulevard in February 2012.
Linda Planten-Lamoree emptied a cart of mail to start the sorting process at the postal service's processing center on Nandino Boulevard in February 2012. Lexington Herald-Leader

The Lexington post office's processing center on Nandino Boulevard apparently has won a reprieve, at least for now, from U.S. Postal Service plans to close some centers in Kentucky and elsewhere.

Barry Marshall, secretary-treasurer of Postal Workers Union Local 2307 in Lexington, said postal employees were informed Tuesday that the Nandino center has been removed from a list of those being studied for closing.

"A couple of days before that, we had gotten a list that said they were only going to close 120 mail-processing plants, and Lexington was not on the list," Marshall said Wednesday.

The Postal Service said in a statement that it provided U.S. senators on Tuesday with a "preliminary" list of "mail processing facilities that could retain overnight delivery service for first-class mail and periodicals." The list was requested by sponsors of Senate Bill 1789, known as the "21st Century Postal Reform Act."

But postal service officials cautioned in a news release that the centers on the latest list "could be subject to change," depending on what the federal legislation ultimately looks like when it is approved.

"The Postal Service will continue to diligently study the most efficient network to meet final service standards," postal officials said. "The Postal Service continues to encourage the enactment of legislation that will provide it with the speed and flexibility to adapt to a changing marketplace for mailing and shipping products."

Postal officials face the possibility of closing mail-sorting centers and cutting back on service in many areas as a result of declining mail volume nationwide.

Roughly 184 jobs at the Nandino Center would be in jeopardy if that processing center is closed.

The Lexington plant, one of 250 postal processing centers nationwide, was one of seven in Kentucky initially identified to be studied for possible consolidation of services.

One possibility that had been outlined would move all mail processing from Lexington, splitting that responsibility between processing centers in Louisville and Knoxville.

The proposal is an overall plan intended to save the financially pressed U.S. Postal Service about $3.5 billion.

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