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Postal Service budget woes cut into safety repairs: report

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Arlington, VA – Budget constraints have prevented the U.S. Postal Service from making critical safety repairs, concludes a new report from the Office of Inspector General.

The report, issued Nov. 27, states that USPS spent 29 percent less than similar facility types (such as manufacturing plants) on facility repairs in fiscal year 2012, and that 19,033 (or 18 percent) of repairs in FY 2011 and 2012 went uncompleted.

Half of the unmade repairs concerned safety, security or potential future major repairs, and 16 percent of the repairs represented potential OSHA violations that could cost USPS $2.9 million in fines.

Additionally, OIG identified a problem with how repairs were classified, with some critical issues being labeled “low priority.”

To help USPS improve its repair status, the report recommended establishing written procedures for classifying repairs, developing a strategy for completing repairs and allocating funding to the highest priority projects.