When asked if she has heard from New Canaan residents about delays in service lately, answered without hesitation, "Oh, yes." She is hearing from some customers that their delivery time is three to four hours later in the day than it was previously and many are reporting that magazines are arriving days later than expected.
Some customers on line at the Post Office Tuesday morning confirmed that they have noticed a change in delivery.
"We are the US Postal Service and service is a part of our name and we always do our best to never cut service," Cornelio said.
However, she said that changes in town postal routes, the installation of new sorting equipment for large items like magazines at the Camp Avenue facility in Stamford and reductions in the workforce have made this a challenging time for both employees and customers.
Cornelio, a 25-year-veteran of the US Postal Service who began her career in New Canaan and has been the Postmaster for two-and-one-half years, said the reduction of the number of routes from 26 to just more than 20 has meant a longer delivery schedule for fewer carriers and some delays while carriers master those new routes.
At Camp Avenue, she said, new flat-sorting machines, designed to handle larger pieces of mail and to improve service in the long run, have meant some adjustment and likely accounted for the delay in the receipt of magazines. In an effort to cut costs and and increase efficiency, the sorting and distribution of New Canaan's mail was moved from Pine Street to Stamford about eight years ago, she said.
Christine Dugas, a spokesperson for the CT Valley District, US Postal Service, said the Flat Sequencing System, recently added at Camp Avenueis the latest in automated sorting equipment. Part of the Postal System's efforts to trim costs, it cuts down on hand mail sorting by carriers, enabling them to make additional deliveries. She also said that there should not be a "longer delivery day in New Canaan" as a result.
Regarding the concern about late deliveries of magazines, which are handled by this system, she promised that they would look into any delays which may be occuring at Camp Avenue.
For those accustomed to receiving their mail at a specific time each day the Postmaster said, "time of day delivery will improve, but some people will still be first and some will be last."
Cornelio also said that as adjustments are made it is her hope that these changes will work out for the best in the end. She welcomes, she said, input from customers and asked that they do so promptly. "Bring it to our attention, not only for their good, but for the good of their neighbors."