MONTPELIER — Residents say they aren’t getting their mail from the Montpelier Post Office in a timely fashion and it’s unclear what’s causing the issue.

Some residents have reported they have gone days without receiving any mail.

Michele Clark, of Plainfield, wrote a letter to The Times Argus last week stating she did not receive invoices when she was supposed to and ended up paying late fees. Clark said she mentioned this to a group of friends in the Plainfield/Barre area and they reported similar issues. She said one person reported a piece of mail that was supposed to go to California ended up in Michigan.

Clark said in an interview Tuesday she didn’t know the invoices were late until she got the bill.

She said she didn’t want to place the blame on workers at the local post office, whom she said are doing their best.

“It’s not the mailman’s fault,” she said.

But she did reach out to the state’s Congressional delegation to “make a fuss” in the hopes that they will help on a national level.

Clark said as of Tuesday she had only heard back from Rep. Peter Welch’s office thanking her for reaching out and was told his office was upset to hear her report.

Nancy Clay, also of Plainfield, said she hasn’t been getting mail, either. Clay said her electricity bill was three weeks late, though she had already paid it over the phone because she had noticed it was late.

She said a friend from St. Albans sent her a letter that was postmarked Oct. 21 and she only just received it Monday. She said the mail isn’t always late, but it’s something she’s noticed when she’s expecting a certain piece of mail and it takes a long time to arrive.

She asked, “Where is this mail going or where is it sitting?”

Clay said she called the post office in Montpelier during business hours and couldn’t get hold of anyone. She said the phone rang 20 times and no one answered. She said she waited a few minutes, called back and got the same result.

Clay said she is 90 years old, so her family takes her where she needs to go, otherwise she would have gone to the post office in person to figure out what’s going on.

“But it probably wouldn’t do a bit of good anyway,” she said.

Liane Spaulding, the postmaster of the Montpelier Post Office, did not respond to a request for comment.

After being told what residents are experiencing, Steve Doherty, strategic communications specialist for the postal service, wrote in an email Friday the service is actively recruiting for holiday help and anyone looking for a job can apply at the USPS website.

“Due to the incredible flexibility of our workforce, we’re able to draw personnel and resources from neighboring communities, as needed, to fill temporary needs and insure that all of our Vermont customers receive the kind of first class service they’ve come to expect and deserve. Should a customer experience any issues with their mail delivery, they’re urged to call our Customer Service Center at 1-800-275-8777. The Customer Service Center is staffed around the clock to handle any types of issues from package tracking to general questions,” Doherty wrote.

eric.blaisdell @timesargus.com

(2) comments

DJHood

Thank you, Trump supporters! We all really appreciate the sabotage to the USPS.

Smitty2.0

Using the customer service center does NOT get fast results. I scheduled a pickup (which I do daily for my Etsy sales) and USPS never picked it up. They did however send me a confirmation incorrectly stating that they picked it up. My outgoing packages sat outside all night, which I was not happy about. I called the customer service center, which is all automated, went through various menus just to find out I had to file a claim and it would take 1-3 days to get a response. In the meantime, I have packages in my mailbox that are waiting to be picked up, and customers that are waiting for them. I went ahead and filed the claim because I want the issue to be in their system. I do understand USPS is struggling, but customers and their businesses are suffering as a result.

I would also like to point out the bad attitudes of some (not all) of the delivery people. I have literally heard a mailman swearing and complaining at the number of packages he was having to pick up at my place. Isn't that their job? Get off your phone (I have overhead them on personal phone calls on a routine basis while delivering) and your efficiency will probably improve immensely. Don’t get me wrong – I think most of the USPS workers are very hard workers, and the system is very stressed – but that’s no excuse for not picking up scheduled pickups, saying that they were picked up, not delivering peoples bills and causing them late fees and more. Something has got to give…

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