June 18, 2018
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Chamber against closing Hampden mail processing facility as public meeting looms

Bridget Brown | BDN
Bridget Brown | BDN
Hampden resident Crissy Rowe drops off mail in a post office box outside the U.S. Postal Service Eastern Maine Processing and Distribution Facility in Hampden in August 2008.
By Andrew Neff, BDN Staff

BANGOR, Maine — The Bangor Region Chamber of Commerce board of directors has come out against a U.S. Postal Service proposal to close the Hampden mail processing plant on the same day a public hearing on the matter is expected to draw a large crowd.

As a cost-cutting measure for the financially beleaguered Postal Service, a nationwide consolidation study was started in September. Initial study results support eliminating the mail processing operations at the Eastern Maine Processing and Distribution Facility in Hampden and having the only other USPS plant in Maine — the Southern Maine Processing and Distribution Center in Scarborough — take over those duties.

A public meeting to discuss this proposal, which would mean the loss of 43 jobs at the Hampden plant, is scheduled for 6 p.m. Wednesday at Jeff’s Catering and Banquet Center on Coffin Road at the East West Industrial Park in Brewer.

“The postal processing facility in Hampden provides a vital service to the residents and businesses of the Bangor Region, and its closure would pose a hardship on our citizens and place our businesses at a competitive disadvantage,” said a Chamber press release. “Mail service would be slowed considerably by the closing, and businesses here would face delays in sending and receiving mail. The impact on direct marketing companies and print shops would be especially dire. Additionally, the loss of nearly 200 postal worker jobs would be a severe blow to our local economy.”

The Chamber’s board called upon Congress to support the efforts of Maine congressional delegation to pass legislation that would enable the Postal Service to restructure without taking such an extreme measure.

Sen. Olympia Snowe and Sen. Susan Collins will be attending the meeting.

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