In order to work through the economic rough patch, the US Postal Service may have to cut delivery and pick-up from 6 days a week, to 5. “I think that would be an injustice to the public because it has always been that way,” said Wilmington’s Ella Louise. Some rely on the postal service for a living. Just ask local business owner, PJ Kelly of Compass Point Developers. “It certainly would affect getting stuff out to people that we've promised in a timely manner.” A USPS spokeswoman said going to a five day work week is a last resort, and this is why. In 2006, a law was passed that says the postal service has to pay five billion dollars for the next ten years to pre-fund the cost of benefits for future retirees. That is in addition to the two billion it must pay for its current retirees. The Postmaster General asked Congress Wednesday to approve restructuring that payment to relieve the financial burden, instead of cutting a delivery day. Pat Long of Kure Beach said, “I guess we all do what we have to do during this economic strain.” A number of factors play in to the weakening USPS bottom line; declining mail volumes, last year's spike in fuel cost and the increasingly turbulent economy. It is unclear exactly how much a five day work week would save in dollars and cents, but the postal service said, "Savings would be quite tremendous". There are still many unknowns; what day of the week the USPS would stop delivering, who it will affect - residents, businesses or both, or when it would happen.
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