Frustration increases over Truckee post office
April 6, 2008
The Town of Truckee is enlisting help from higher up in the federal government as the U.S. Postal Service moves forward with its plans to move out of downtown.
The Postal Service first alerted the town of its intent to move both the downtown office and the Deerfield Drive office into a new, larger location in February. During a 30-day appeal period, the town submitted a request for at least one more public meeting, but did not here back within the 15-day response time.
“I would characterize this process as a bureaucratic run around,” said Town Manager Tony Lashbrook at an April 3 town council meeting.
Postal officials are now seeking 2.5 to 3.5 acres of land, or a new building between 19,000 and 21,000 square feet in the Truckee area. Offers must be received by April 18, according to a Postal Service legal notice.
The speedy timeline would help insure the Postal Service retains funding for the project, which will lapse in September if property hasn’t been secured, said Garry Mattox, real estate specialist with the Postal Service at a previous meeting.
“This request isn’t consistent with what they told the town ” they told us the funding would only be for an owned site, but the [request for proposals] said leased or owned,” Lashbrook said. “There are some discrepancies with their story.”
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The town’s resistance to the change comes from a desire to maintain a post office presence downtown.
“It’s a key anchor tenant for downtown, the loss could have significant economic impacts, not to mention social impacts,” Lashbrook said.
Lashbrook said he believes if the Postal Service works with the town, a positive solution could be reached.
“If you don’t work with us, we will likely kill your project ” that’s not meant to be a threat ” I don’t think that’s a future any of us would look forward to,” Lashbrook said.
The town is also reaching out for help from the federal government, recently meeting with Congressman John Doolittle, and contacting Senator Barbara Boxer and Senator Dianne Feinstein.
“Senators Boxer and Feinstein have showed interest in this, they see this is a little town trying to maintain its economy and its character,” said Mayor Barbara Green.
Nevada County Supervisor Ted Owens met with Doolittle last week.
“I feel the complaints people have, and the town having issues with the Postal Service blowing them off,” Owens said. “It’s good to air those with the congressman.”