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Diane Dyer: My TreeHugging Opinion

Earlier this week I stopped by Aberdeen Post Office to pick up my mail and pay my box rent for the year.  I have what is called a number 3 box (large) and the cost is $100 per year.  The box rent has continued to increase over the last few years, so I decided to check the price of postal boxes in other parts of the county.  To my surprise, that same box, I pay $100 at Aberdeen, costs $76 in Morgantown, $76 in Woodbury, $100 at Jetson and $100 at Dunbar. Shouldn’t it cost same everywhere in Butler County? 

A number 3 postal box, $100 or $76?????
So I went looking for answers. I talked with the post master Chris Chiles at Morgantown Post Office.  He was extremely helpful and got on the phone and called the various post offices in the county verifying my information.  He also checked the Postal Service online site and once again verified my findings. 
“Box rental rates are set by the postal service, not locally,” said Chiles.
He went on to explain there is a formula based on the square footage of the office, the cost to run the office, and a variety of other things that is used to set the prices.  Chiles was unaware of the difference in pricing until we talked. 
My personal opinion is the postal service increases the prices in rural offices to discourage individuals from using them.  As a consumer, I make every effort to support my local post office and do not think it is fair that the cost to rent the same size box is different depending on the location in the county.
If the postal system wants to improve their service then equal pricing maybe a way to start.



I totally agree with you on this one Diane.
One couuld also theorize that there could be an inverse theory to the Postal Service not wanting people to utilize the more remote offices. One has to wonder if maybe the higher pricing in some of the rural offices may be to actually help keep those offices open, not necessarily to drive folks away from them. There may be a handful of people out there who may find it worth the extra $2 per month to patronize their post office of choice as opposed to going into and across town each day. With the threat of more and more post offices closing and cutting back hours as we've seen, that could be a method of generating income to justify the validity of keeping a certain office open.

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