WASHINGTON -- The Postal Service announced Thursday that it would begin consolidating 48 mail processing centers beginning in July -- the first phase of a cost-cutting plan that is intended to save the agency nearly $1.2 billion a year as it adjusts to declining mail volume.
The mail processing center in Pasco remains on the list to be consolidated with Spokane's processing operation, but the timing is unknown, said Ernie Swanson, a Postal Service spokesman in Seattle.
"It could take place either this summer or in early 2013," Swanson told the Herald.
The postal agency said it would consolidate an additional 92 processing centers in February 2013 and 89 more in early 2014.
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The Postal Service said it would close about 250 processing centers, and it expects to save about $2.1 billion a year after the plan is fully implemented in 2014. About 5,000 workers would be immediately affected by the consolidations, although it was unclear if they would be reassigned or given incentives to retire.