Thursday, July 18, 2013

Postal End-Run

I am a smidge worried, as the new-found election blogger and all, that I've drifted a bit from my mission.

I did say this blog will have a point of view, and it's had one lately, but the true purpose of the blog was to give insight into the day-to-day aspects of election administration.

So, this brief post comes back to that.  If you've been reading lately, it would be hard not to notice my disdain for our local post office, and this post happily points out that we may have an end-run around that.

First, let me reinforce that we found a guy in Kansas City who was our postal advocate.  He's been awesome, helped us out during the snowstorm election in February, and then, he vanished.

I was worried that he took another job.  I called him.  I sent him emails.  I lit candles at church.

All, to no avail.

He emerged about 6 weeks ago and, for whatever reason, hadn't received my S.O.S.  He was back in the game, though, he said, and he has definitely jumped in.

First, he talked with our old postmaster, now in Las Vegas.  He also talked with our current post minor (I'm not sure if he is the postmaster or just the guy in charge) at our post office.  This is the guy who told us that because we had an employee engaged to our old postal carrier (who retired 2 years ago) that we got better service than we should have.

Our advocate saw through this attitude, thankfully, and then after a strong wag of the finger to the post minor, called me to let me know he was on it.

At the same time, we began exploring ways to bypass the Olathe Post Office on the way out.  We have hooked up with Pitney Bowes in downtown Kansas City.  This operation is run by a former Sprint employee (as am I) and a Johnson County voter excited to be in the mix.

Wow, someone supporting our office excited to do so.  Wow, again.  Wow, again and again.

I bashfully asked if she, by chance, sure she didn't, just asking, hope she didn't mind, but just wondered--if she knew our advocate at the United States Postal Service.

She did!  They're buds.  And, they have a meeting this week to talk about the Overland Park mail ballot election that is forthcoming.

What a turn of events--there's even more to the positive news, and we're very optimistic.  I toured the facility and took pictures for the blog, but in my excitement the photos were too jumbly to post.

We still have to deal with the post office on the way back in, as ballots are delivered.  But this takes care of a huge ordeal sending them.

Still, what a turn, all the way to an end run.  We'll know soon how it works, but right now, the best way to be a satisfied customer is to be a non-customer.  The true winner, hopefully, will be Overland Park.