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Coalition Opposes USPS Cuts

Price Hike IndicatorA coalition of groups opposed to cuts at the U.S. Postal Service will use a hearing in Baltimore on Wednesday to question whether slower mail delivery standards approved last year could delay absentee ballots in the forthcoming election.

Under pressure to trim costs and close mail processing centers, the Postal Service relaxed standards early last year — no longer delivering local first-class mail the next day, for instance. Advocates say that the problem is more extensive than a single-day delay and that slow delivery has already affected private elections.

There is no indication that mail delivery has played a role in any of the presidential primaries this year, and the concerns being raised by the group are grounded more in the potential for delayed results in an exceedingly tight contest than in ballots not being counted.

A Washington-based group called the Grand Alliance to Save our Public Postal Service, which started as an effort of postal unions but now includes civil rights, religious and environmental organizations, will conduct hearings across the country on the issue. The first will take place at Coppin State University on Wednesday.

“What I’ve noticed in the past year is that the delivery times have slipped significantly,” said John L. Seibel, president of a Bethesda-based company called TrueBallot, which runs elections for unions, professional associations and Native American tribes. “It’s gone from three days to a week each way.”

Read article Groups to raise concerns about mailed ballots.