The U.S. Postal Service is moving mail processing operations from Pendleton to the Portland Processing and Distribution Center, it announced Thursday.
Moving the operation out of the Dorion Avenue post office saves the Postal Service about $560,000, trims two jobs and may add a day to delivery for addresses in the 978 ZIP code. That postal zone extends from Gilliam County to the Idaho border, and from the Washington border down to Seneca and Baker City.
No other postal services in Pendleton are affected, according to the announcement.
"I think that's a sad thing for Pendleton, quite frankly,"?Mayor Phillip Houk said. "I?understand they have a budget and need to do what they need to do to be successful, but it's really concerning for Pendleton."
Will mail from Pendleton still carry a Pendleton postmark??the mayor asked. "It does hurt a part of our identity and the communities around us as well,"?Houk said.
The Postal Service announced a plan in September 2011 to close mail processing operations around the country to stem steep financial losses.
Pendleton City Council voiced its objection to closing the city processing center in a letter to the Postal Service Jan. 10.
A December 2011 public hearing drew about 20 attendees, mostly postal workers. They expressed concerns ranging from delivery lag-times to timely delivery of mail-in ballots.
The Postal Service originally said it would announce closures in May.
This story originally appeared in East Oregonian.