By The Associated Press
WASHINGTON – The U.S. Postal Service on Wednesday backed down on ending Saturday mail delivery, saying Congress gave it no choice.
In an announcement earlier this year, the service said that Saturday mail cutback would begin in August and could save $2 billion annually.
The planned move accentuated one of the agency’s strong points — package delivery has increased by 14 percent since 2010, officials said, while the delivery of letters and other mail has declined with the increasing use of email and other Internet services.
Under that plan, mail would be delivered to homes and businesses only from Monday through Friday, but would still be delivered to post office boxes on Saturdays. Post offices now open on Saturdays would remain open on Saturdays.
Over the past several years, the Postal Service has advocated shifting to a five-day delivery schedule for mail and packages — and it repeatedly but unsuccessfully appealed to Congress to approve the move. Though an independent agency, the service gets no tax dollars for its day-to-day operations but is subject to congressional control.