Governor Matt Mead is pushing to prevent the closure of rural post offices in Wyoming. He original sent a letter to the United States Postal Service in August expressing his concern. The U.S.P.S. has listed 43 post offices in the state that could potentially be shuttered. Governor Mead's letter to the Regional Manager of the U.S.P.S. said closing these post offices is not a solution to the budgetary problems the Postal Service is facing.
Governor Mead notes that these closures would add 40-60 miles of driving for rural residents to get their mail, but that the U.S.P.S. told some Wyoming people they could use an office 120 miles away. "Making this journey - whether 40 miles or 240 miles - driving sometimes unpaved roads, often covered by slick snowpack for more than six months a year, is a hardship and a safety hazard," Governor Mead wrote. He also points out that many of these rural residents do not have reliable access to the internet for communication making the Postal Service even more important.
"I do recognize that there need to be cuts made to ensure the U.S.P.S. remains viable, but I hope that other ideas come to the fore," Governor Mead said. "Some of these rural post offices are already open less than five days a week and so it is appropriate to look at other options that spread the sacrifice across the country.
"Expecting small towns to absorb the closure of their post offices is not realistic. These post offices are a vital part of our communication network in the rural West," Governor Mead said.