The Daily Mash-Up

Saturday, August 29, 2015 This Week's Paper
Saturday mail delivery set to end in August

The United States Postal Service announced plans today to transition to a new delivery schedule during the week of Aug. 5, that includes package delivery Monday through Saturday, and regular mail delivery cut to just Monday through Friday. The move ends Saturday delivery of non-package mail. The Postal Service expects to saves of about $2 billion annually, once the plan is fully implemented.

“The Postal Service is advancing an important new approach to delivery that reflects the strong growth of our package business and responds to the financial realities resulting from America’s changing mailing habits,” said Patrick R. Donahoe, Postmaster General and CEO. “We developed this approach by working with our customers to understand their delivery needs and by identifying creative ways to generate significant cost savings.”

The Postal Service has advocated shifting to a five-day delivery schedule for mail and packages for years. However, recent strong growth in package delivery (14 percent increase since 2010) and projections of continued strong package growth throughout the coming decade led to the revised approach to maintain package delivery six days per week.

“Our customers see strong value in the national delivery platform we provide and maintaining a six-day delivery schedule for packages is an important part of that platform,” said Donahoe. “As consumers increasingly use and rely on delivery services — especially due to the rise of e-commerce — we can play an increasingly vital role as a delivery provider of choice, and as a driver of growth opportunities for America’s businesses.”

Once implemented during August, mail delivery to street addresses will occur Monday through Friday. Packages will continue to be delivered six days per week. Mail addressed to PO Boxes will continue to be delivered on Saturdays. Post Offices currently open on Saturdays will remain open on Saturdays.

Market research conducted by the Postal Service and independent research by major news organizations indicate that nearly 70 percent of Americans supported the switch to five-day delivery as a way for the Postal Service to reduce costs in its effort to return the organization to financial stability.

Support for this approach will likely be even higher since the Postal Service plans to maintain six-day package delivery.

The Postal Service is making the announcement today, more than six months in advance of implementing five-day mail delivery schedule, to give residential and business customers time to plan and adjust. The Postal Service plans to publish specific guidance in the near future for residential and business customers about its new delivery schedule.

Given the ongoing financial challenges, the Postal Service Board of Governors last month directed postal management to accelerate the restructuring of Postal Service operations in order to strengthen Postal Service finances.

“The American public understands the financial challenges of the Postal Service and supports these steps as a responsible and reasonable approach to improving our financial situation,” said Donahoe. “The Postal Service has a responsibility to take the steps necessary to return to long-term financial stability and ensure the continued affordability of the U.S. Mail.”

The operational plan for the new delivery schedule anticipates a combination of employee reassignment and attrition and is expected to achieve cost savings of approximately $2 billion annually when fully implemented.

The Postal Service is currently implementing major restructuring throughout its retail, delivery and mail processing operations. Since 2006, the Postal Service has reduced its annual cost base by approximately $15 billion, reduced the size of its career workforce by 193,000 or 28 percent, and has consolidated more than 200 mail processing locations. During these unprecedented initiatives, the Postal Service continued to deliver record high levels of service to its customers.

While the change in the delivery schedule announced today is one of the actions needed to restore the financial health of the Postal Service, legislative change is urgently needed to address matters outside the Postal Service’s control. The Postal Service continues to seek legislation to provide it with greater flexibility to control costs and generate new revenue since it receives no tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations.

Don’t freak, Tacoma’s going every other week garbage collection

Every-other-week garbage collection begins March 11 for about 5,700 single-family households in a portion of North Tacoma. Customers will automatically receive double their current garbage capacity with either a new double-sized container or a second same-sized container.

The remaining 47,500 households will switch to every-other-week collection in phases through November 2013. Customers will receive advance notice by mail and phone.

Here’s a general timeline — subject to change — for when and where Solid Waste Management plans to implement the switch to every-other-week garbage collection.
• Monday garbage customers: March/April
• Tuesday garbage customers: June/July
• Wednesday garbage customers: August/September
• Thursday garbage customers: October/November
• Friday garbage customers: April/May

“Our customers can expect the same level of service as before,” said Mike Slevin, Environmental Services interim director. “They’ll be able to dispose of the same amount of garbage as usual.”

During the every-other-week garbage collection pilot program conducted in 2011, Solid Waste Management demonstrated that this approach will result in less garbage being disposed, increased recycling, reduced vehicle emissions and a smaller carbon footprint, and greater efficiency in collection.

For more information, visit www.TacomaRecycles.org/everyotherweek, or call Solid Waste Management, at(253) 591-5543.

Puyallup Exceeds Savings Goals

The City of Puyallup achieved greater-than-expected savings by refinancing portions of three prior bond issues.

As part of the refinancing process, the city sold a total of $13.5 million of bonds on Jan. 29, to replace existing debt. The sale resulted in a net savings of $754,833 during the next 13 years. While the city set a 3 percent minimum savings goal, the actual savings achieved by the refinancing was roughly 5.5 percent due to the favorable bond market.

Mayor Rick Hansen stated, “It is our aim to prudently manage the resources our community has entrusted us with, and refinancing debt at lower interest rates has helped achieve that goal.”

City Finance Director Cliff Craig added, “Our timing in the market was very good. Because interest rates are still among the lowest in 45 years, the city was able to achieve a net savings that exceeded our goal.”

D.A. Davidson & Co. in Seattle served as bond underwriter.

The city’s “AA” rating on the utility revenue bonds and “AA-” rating on the general obligation bonds, both from Standard & Poor’s, also contributed to the success of the sale.

S&P cited the city utility’s strong financial metrics, minimal future financing needs, good management practices, and the city’s financial performance as credit factors supporting the strong ratings.

Don't read this while you eat lunch.

After two incidents last week, the Business Improvement Area'ssecurity department and the Tacoma Police Department has issued an alert about a man assaulting women.

During the past week, there have been two incidents involving a black male approaching unsuspecting female employees in the Antique Row business area along Broadway.

The subject would distract the employee and begin masturbating when she is not looking. At least one unconfirmed report on social media outlets states the man ejaculated on at least one of the victims while she had turned away.

The suspect is in his Late teens to early 20's, with a "baby face,” described as 6-feet to 6-feet, 2-inches tall, with a very thin build. The person of interest has been also described as having no facial hair and feminine facial features. The incidents have occurred at retail establishments, not offices or restaurants, in the BIA area. At the time of the incidents, the person was wearing a dark green or black windbreaker with no hood, a black do-rag, baggy medium blue jeans with white piping and an ornate design on the pockets and carrying a backpack.

Police and the Downtown Business Association are working in coordination with the department's Special Assault Unit detectives on suspect identification.

This information is being provided by the Tacoma Police Department not with the intent of alarming the community, but as a reminder to be aware of your surroundings and activities as you conduct business in the downtown area. These incidents are being actively investigated by the Tacoma Police Department and contact CLO Marty Price at (253) 591-5685, Det. Keith Miller at (253) 594-7921 or Lt. LeRoy Standifer at (253)591-5431.

The Postal Service, Vampire Weekend, Arctic Monkeys, Killer Mike, Andrew Bird, the Lumineers and the XX are among the big names announced tonight for this year’s Sasquatch Music Festival. That’s not to mention all the popular ampersand bands on the lineup: Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Mumford & Sons, Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros.

The Gorge Amphitheatre’s annual kickoff party will take place from May 24 to 27 this year, and the lineup was released tonight at a free announcement party that featured performances by Built to Spill and Cody Chesnutt at Seattle’s Neptune Theatre. Below is the full roster of musical acts and comedians announced for this year's festival. Find ticket info here.

Sasquatch! 2013 lineup:

Mumford & Sons, The Postal Service, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Sigur Ros, Vampire Weekend, The xx, The Lumineers, Arctic Monkeys, Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros, Cake, Primus (3D), Empire of the Sun, Imagine Dragons, Bloc Party, Andrew Bird, Grimes, Dropkick Murphys, Built to Spill, Alt-J, Steve Aoki, Azealia Banks, Tame Impala, Father John Misty, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Tallest Man on Earth, Devendra Banhart, The Presets, Laidback Luke, Schoolboy Q & Ab-Soul, Danny Brown, Earl Sweatshirt, Killer Mike, P.O.S., Death Grips, Shad, El-P, Michael Kiwanuka, Solange, Twin Shadow, Divine Fits, Dirty Projectors, Japandroids, Azari & III, Disclosure, Baauer, Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs, Menomena, Ryan Bingham, JJ Grey & Mofro, Porcelain Raft, Youth Lagoon, Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti, Holy Ghost!, Matthew Dear, Toro Y Moi, John Talabot, Shout Out Louds, Surfer Blood, DIIV, Torche, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Atlas Genius, Youngblood Hawke, Capital Cities, Fang Island, Red Fang, Reignwolf, Baths, Lusine, Yppah, Odesza, Four Color Zack, Beachwood Sparks, The Barr Brothers, Shovels & Rope, Willy Moon, Peace, Elliott Brood, Radical Face, Nancy & Beth (Megan Mullally & Stephanie Hunt), Akron/Family, Caveman, Telekinesis, Indians, Chvrches, Wild Belle, Suuns, Brown Bird, Bombino, Robert DeLong, Seawolf, ZZ Ward, Hundred Waters, Luke Sital-Singh, Wake Owl, Deep Sea Diver, Jherek Bischoff, Sean Nelson, Rose Windows, Nacho Picasso, Brothers From Another, Knowmads, Let’s Talk, Ra Scion, OC Notes “Golden Gods,” Kingdom Crumbs, Theoretics, Nissim (D. Black)

Comedy: Nick Offerman, Mike Birbiglia, Brett Gelman, Jenny Slate, Kyle Kinane, Brody Stevens, Jon Daly, James Adomian, Joe Mande

University Dental Tacoma Arts Month
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