Several South GA post offices at risk of closing - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Several South GA post offices at risk of closing

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PARROTT, GA (WALB) – Tucked away off U.S. 82 in Terrell County, you'll find the city of Parrott and its 158 residents. Along with city hall and main street, the post office completes the small town feel.

"Parrott's had a post office since it was founded I guess, back it in 1889," said Mayor Ed Wade.

But one of the biggest issues facing  the small town Wade presides over is the possibility of its post office shutting down. He learned today it was one of 3,700 post offices across the country being studied by the USPS as it looks to shut down retail locations.

"I was very distressed," Wades said. "It just means a lot to the community. It means a lot to citizens of the community. We need to have our post office."

The town earned some fame years ago when the Hollywood western "The Long Riders" was shot here. But what actually puts Parrot on the map, at least numerically, is the post office.

The mayor worries the elderly will be hurt most if it closes.

"A few of them have postal routes, but most of them have their boxes and go to the post offices," he said.

About 10 miles up the road in Weston, residents there are dealing with the same problem.

"We're a really small town. There's only two stores and our post office," said Tammy Merritt.

She and her husband, Richard, own one of those two stores. Merritt Pecan Company is as bustling as you'll find in Webster County. She says she uses the small post office on just about a daily basis.

"We send out about 7500 brochures in the course of a year and  we use it for our day to day mailing," she said.

Weston's post office looks like a throwback to yesteryear. A wooden building off the highway, for decades it's served the community which has slowly grown around it.

But the U.S. Postal Service has been hit hard financially. In 2010, it lost $8.5 billion. To make up for those short falls, alternatives to the hometown post office have been introduced.

But from Cecil to Weston and Irwinville to Parrott, communities are getting behind their post offices.

"I think this community will rally behind the post office. We'll protest and do whatever we need to do to keep it," said Merritt.

"We're going to get in touch with our representatives and postal representatives and see what can be done," Wade said.

We reported last week the towns of Irwinville and Cecil were at risk of losing their post offices. US Postal officials said Tuesday those locations are still under review even though they're not on the list released.

The Postal Service is working on a plan called Village Post Offices to serve those small communities.

General Stores or grocery stores could contract out to offer postal services in those areas.

For a complete list of the USPS locations under review click here.

 

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