(NEW YORK) — The U.S. Postal Service will stop delivering mail on Saturdays, but will continue to deliver packages six days a week.
While post offices that open on Saturdays will continue to do so, the initiative, which is expected to begin the first week of August, will save an estimated $2 billion a year.
The service reduction is the latest of Postal Service steps to cut costs as the independent agency of the U.S. government struggles with its finances.
The USPS announced in May it was cutting back on the number of operating hours instead of shuttering 3,700 rural post offices. The move, which reduced hours of operation at 13,000 rural post offices from an eight-hour day to between two and six hours a day, was made with the aim of saving about $500 million per year.
The cutback in hours last year resulted in 9,000 full-time postal employees being reduced to part time plus the loss of their benefits, while another 4,000 full-time employees became part time but kept their benefits.
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Madison Park, Keith Allen and Andreas Preuss, CNN