Saturday, July 31, 2021

Play

Educators' unions call for efforts to ensure in-person learning keeps students, teachers, families, and staff safe; and an update on hate crimes by state.

Play

Congress passes Capitol security funding; House Freedom Caucus members want Cheney, Kinzinger out of GOP conference; Schumer closes a deal to advance $3.5 trillion reconciliation package; and a new report says investor-owned utilities try to block rooftop solar.

Mail Delays, COVID-19 Endanger Nebraska Small Businesses

Play

Monday, August 10, 2020   

OMAHA, Neb. -- Mail delays are putting pressure on small business owners in Nebraska, who rely on the U.S. Postal Service for crucial aspects of their operations.

The agency reports a $2.2 billion loss in this year's second quarter.

On Friday, Postmaster General Louis DeJoy announced a major restructuring of USPS leadership, including the reassignment of the two top officials in charge of daily operations.

A bipartisan group of senators introduced legislation last month with $25 billion for the postal service in the next coronavirus stimulus package.

Dana Osborne, who owns a wedding stationary design business in Omaha, says all this unpredictability is a challenge.

"I actually tell my couples, 'There are two things you can't control when it comes to your wedding, and that's the weather and the post office,'" she states.

The agency has made other operational changes to cut costs that mail carriers say will slow things down, including the reduction of overtime and orders to shut off sorting machines earlier. Changes also require carriers leave some mail behind to prevent running late on their routes.

Osborne maintains the Postal Service needs support, and says mail delays are only one reason this year has been tough on her business. She notes many couples have postponed or scaled back their weddings.

"I've worked so hard to get to this point, where I could own my own business and have a career that I love, and it's flexible for me and my family," she states. "And things like coronavirus and the post office being something that may break my business -- it's just heartbreaking to me."

Small businesses make up 99% of companies in Nebraska and employ about half of the workforce.

John McHugh, a former Republican U.S. representative from New York, is a spokesman for the Package Coalition, an alliance of retailers concerned about maintaining delivery service. He says without a stimulus, the USPS will run out of money -- and in turn, some small businesses will have to close.

"Thinking about the hope for economic recovery -- well, as tough as it's going to be, it'll be that much more difficult with these small businesses having to shutter their doors," McHugh states.

McHugh says he hopes enough lawmakers on both sides of the aisle will understand the severity of the situation, and take swift action to save the U.S Postal Service.


get more stories like this via email

In addition to roof repairs and other home improvements to lower utility bills, a Michigan League for Public Policy report recommends expanding utility-shutoff protections to include households with young children. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

LANSING, Mich. - High utility costs are a major burden for Michigan's low-income residents, and a new study says they have an impact on their health…


Environment

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - A new report shows an effort by investor-owned utilities in the Sunshine State to block the growth of rooftop solar. The …

Health and Wellness

By Troy Pierson / Broadcast version by Mary Schuermann reporting for the Kent State-Ohio News Connection Collaboration. As marijuana becomes more …


Across the United States, 46 states have laws allowing for harsher punishment for crimes based on bias. (Ludk/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

SALT LAKE CITY - With rising numbers of people targeted in hate crimes and related violence, a new report analyzes the hate-crime laws in each state…

Social Issues

BOSTON - Educators' unions are calling on the state to support their efforts to ensure in-person learning in the fall keeps students, teachers…

According to AARP Connecticut, 47% of family caregivers have had at least one financial setback, such as having less money for retirement or savings, or cutting back on their own healthcare spending. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

HARTFORD, Conn. - In Connecticut, more than 460,000 people care for close friends or family members who can't manage on their own - and their …

Social Issues

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - Millions of Americans soon could find eviction notices on their front doors, but New Mexico renters will not be among them - as …

Health and Wellness

CONCORD, N.H. - New Hampshire advocates for affordable healthcare access want Congress to lower prescription costs by allowing Medicare to negotiate …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021