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New round of postal meetings slated

By MIKE CORN

mcorn@dailynews.net

Meetings in 10 more communities across northwest Kansas are set for the coming weeks, all part of the U.S. Postal Service's push to downsize its operations.

The meetings, in Grainfield, Grinnell, Collyer, Herndon, Morland, Selden, Almena, Alton, Alexander and McCracken, all are part of a push to reduce hours in thousands of rural post offices across the nation.

USPS last week announced it would end Saturday mail delivery beginning in early August.

On Tuesday, bills were introduced in both congressional chambers doing away with the requirement it prefund future health-care services, which were responsible for most of the financial losses last year.

The legislation also would save Saturday mail service, halt the shutdown of mail sorting centers and provide unspecified safeguards for rural post offices.

Both the Hays and Colby mail sorting centers are scheduled to be consolidated into other offices in coming weeks.

Already, a number of community meetings have been conducted, and in every case the window hours have been determined prior to the meetings.

Upcoming meetings are:

* Grinnell, 1 p.m. Thursday in the Senior Citizens Center.

* Grainfield, 4 p.m. Thursday in the American Legion.

* Collyer, noon Feb. 26 at the Collyer Post Office.

* Morland, 2:30 p.m. Feb. 26 in the Community Hall.

* Herndon, 2 p.m. Feb. 28 in the Herndon Senior Citizens Center

* Selden, 5:30 p.m. Feb. 28 in the Community Building.

* Almena, noon March 5 in the Almena Post Office.

* Alton, 2:30 p.m. March 5 in the Community Building.

* McCracken, 1 p.m. March 5 in the Community Center.

* Alexander, 4 p.m. March 5 in Kueffer Hall.

Reductions already have been made at Jennings, Lenora, Kanorado, McDonald, Gove, Healy, Dorrance, Sylvan Grove, Cedar, Woodston, Weskan, Winona, Agra, Gaylord, Bunker Hill, Waldo, Brownell, Ransom, Damar and Gorham.

Meetings still are planned for Bazine, Bird City, Bison, Bogue, Brewster, Catharine, Edson, Kensington, Kirwin, Lebanon, Logan, Lucas, Luray, Natoma, Norcatur, Palco, Paradise, Portis, Prairie View, Rexford, Rush Center, Selden and Utica.

Most of the reductions are taking local post offices to four-hour windows, but there are some reduced to just two hours -- mostly those previously targeted for closure.