Forest Home Post Office will not close

Published 12:00 am Saturday, February 9, 2002

Several residents of Forest Home met on Wednesday at Forest Home Baptist Church to discuss the possible closing of the community post office.

However, at the beginning of the meeting, Roger Wilson of the U.S. Postal Service's Consumer Affairs office informed all in attendance that the post office would not be closed, and that the position for a postmaster for the community now is being advertised.

"They have never told us why they were thinking of closing the post office, but Roger said today that they are not going to," said Fred Thompson, a Forest Home resident who has headed up the Save Our Post Office Committee.

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"They are not going to close the post office, the rural routes will be the same and the post office boxes will be continued," Thompson added. "The catch is that those of us who have post office boxes have been getting our mail by 9 a.m. Now they are proposing that the carrier first deliver to the Greenville route and then come here, which will put us getting our mail at 2 or 3 p.m. in the afternoon."

In addition to the proposal, Wilson also informed residents of how the mail is processed after several residents questioned if the mail leaving Forest Home was being marked as such.

"We use a Delivery Point System (DPS) for sorting the mail down to a carrier. The mail is sorted in Montgomery to the carrier route and then is delivered to Greenville or Forest Home," said Wilson. "The mail is sorted so fine that the carrier only has to sort so many pieces of mail that come in locally. If the people in the local community drop a letter in a local post office, then it is canceled at the local level."

However, many of the local residents claimed that their mail was not being canceled at the local level, but would have Montgomery stamps on the letters. Because of this, it was decided by the postal service that the best thing for the Forest Home Post Office to do would be to create two drop boxes, one for local mail and one for out-of-town mail.

"We have shown that there is interest in keeping the post office open and that there are sufficient customers to keep it open," said Thompson. "We're just glad that our post office will remain open."