Short-staffed, Truckee Post Office struggles to deliver on time | SierraSun.com

Short-staffed, Truckee Post Office struggles to deliver on time

Hannah Jones
hjones@sierrasun.com

Since November the Truckee Post Office has been attempting to recruit employees with no success, causing a serious delay in delivery services to certain parts of town.

In the past few months some Truckee residents may have noticed that their mail is not showing up on time, sometimes being delayed for days.

Since November of last year, the Truckee Post Office has been attempting to recruit employees with little success, officials said, causing a delay in delivery to certain parts of town.

"At first the mail came every other day, then it came only once a week for about two weeks," said Lloyd Garden, who has lived in Sierra Meadows since April. Due to the delay in delivery service he resorted to going to the post office to pick up important mail by hand.

"I run my business out of my home and having checks returned to sender or getting them a week late was a huge inconvenience," he said, also noting he had DMV renewal letters and IRS mail that was delivered late.

"Just today we're down four routes," Chuck Kline, a Truckee Post Office employee, said this week. "It's extremely busy here."

Kline said the post office's downtown location is currently in need of three clerks and three postal carriers, but that "the wages are barely sufficient."

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The second office, located off Deerfield Road, is trying to fill one part-time and one-full-time position. While the positions do offer benefits, employees only get access after two years into the job.

Kline said he's been trying to contact human resources about the issue, but said the department have not been very responsive.

"We're constantly getting complaints from residents," Kline said.

"I know this is not the post office's fault and that they have been working very hard," said Garden. He said when the delays began he reached out to postal inspectors about the issue. Though the inspectors never responded, he began receiving his mail every day again, though deliveries were usually late in the day.

In addition, Garden contacted the district's congressman, Tom McClintock, hoping he would address the low pay of postal employees.

According to the American Postal Workers Union, postal clerk salaries at the lowest spot on the pay scale earned $25,657 to start. However, the average salary of the nation's 65,040 postal clerks overall was $52,860.

Currently, the open positions are posted online at usps.com.

Hannah Jones is a reporter for the Sierra Sun. She can be reached at hjones@sierrasun.com or 530-550-2652.