CLARKS SUMMIT, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — People living in one part of Lackawanna County say they have not had mail delivery in two weeks or more.
The Clarks Summit area joins a growing list of local communities that are dealing with no mail or slow mail. There is no doubt about it. The scenario in Clarks Summit mirrors what we have seen in other area communities.
But the question is what, if anything, is being done to resolve these delays?
“Well, mail is sometimes late up to 10 days sometimes two days, three days,” Paul Freid of Clarks Summit said.
Freid came to the Clarks Summit post office Tuesday to send out mail and to find out why there are such delays. His major concern is not receiving bills on time.
“I got an aqua bill which was due on the 5th and it was delivered on the 6th of January. I was ready to receive a warning or whatever,” Freid said.
But Freid says the water company was very understanding and did not penalize him for being late on the bill. And we heard similar concerns from people in the Clarks Summit area.
“One of the concerns obviously is flat mail bills, first-class bills. Not everybody has automated deductions out of their checking or credit cards,” Bill Hansen of South Abington Township said.
Hansen says that he and his neighbors have even offered to volunteer at the Clarks Summit post office to help get the mail out the door faster. He says officials at the Clarks Summit post office told him that some employees were sick and they are shorthanded because of the COVID-19 endemic.
“We can understand somebody’s sick, you know, couple days, but we don’t understand why they don’t try to prioritize bring in extra help,” Hansen said.
A spokesperson for the U.S. Postal Service sent Eyewitness News a statement which put much of the blame for delivery delays on the impact of the COVID pandemic. The statement is below.
In a statement USPS stated:
We recognize that consistency is paramount to our customers, and we remain committed to providing timely and affordable service to customers. This has been an extraordinary year of unprecedented challenges given the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Clarks Summit Post Office has taken steps to address issues caused by the pandemic by using additional carriers from nearby offices, when necessary, to maintain mail deliveries. We remain fully committed to identify and reviewing all processes in our operations to ensure mail is moving expeditiously.Paul Smith-USPS Spokesman
“All of it goes back to inadequate funding at the post offices,” Congressman Matt Cartwright said.
Cartwright says he’s sure the issue can be resolved soon.
“The one encouraging thing is the House and Senate have now come together this past year with a joint bill to reform the funding for the post office. This is what we are going to have to do or otherwise this kind of thing is going to happen over and over again,” Cartwright said.
And some residents say they hope these issues can be resolved sooner rather than later, especially now that tax season is upon us and many people are awaiting for tax information.
The people Eyewitness News spoke with say they understand that the staff at the Clarks Summit post office are doing their best they can, but they are hopeful that somehow someway they can get some help to get the job done.