Congressmember Ackerman: Bayside post office branch to close

THE COURIER/photo by Melissa Chan

The United States Postal Service (USPS) will close and relocate its Bayside post office branch, according to Congressmember Gary Ackerman.

USPS officials want to move the centrally located Bayside branch, located at 212-35 42nd Avenue — off Bell Boulevard behind the Long Island Rail Road station — to a remote annex at 41-29 216th Street, the congressmember said. The annex, he said, is located in a much less convenient location on the edge of a residential neighborhood.

“Moving the Bayside branch from its prime spot in the middle of the area’s busy commercial strip to a remote and inconvenient location makes absolutely no sense,” Ackerman said. “Not only would this plan adversely impact the local residents and businesses who use this facility, but it could likely cause a further erosion in postal business since its customers may not trek to this out-of-the-way location.”

According to Ackerman, the USPS presently leases both properties, and its officials say swapping locations would save the agency money.

“The Postal Service is in a financial death spiral, and we’re all aware that the agency is under intense pressure to cut costs. But making it more difficult for consumers to purchase its products and utilize its services is certainly not the way to go,” he said.

The USPS did not yet return calls for comment.

The move would occur sometime in 2013. While no jobs would be lost under the plan, the congressmember said the agency still needs to follow proper procedure in consolidating facilities, which requires public notice, consultation and input.

“That has not happened,” Ackerman said.

Bayside resident Frank Ringuette, who picks up his mail at a P.O. box in the Bayside branch, said the change would be a huge inconvenience for him.

“It doesn’t make any sense,” he said.