PO 24-hour box access
By Brian Sweeney
The Margaretville Post Office has opened its doors to deliver seven-day, 24-hour mailbox access for patrons.
Customers, according to Postmaster Bob Cron, have welcomed the change, which went into effect in early December.
“People can now get their mail anytime,” Mr. Cron explained. “There are a lot of people from the city who have post office boxes here who can never make it by noon on Saturday.”
In addition to opening the lobby area for round-the-clock mailbox access, the post office has also installed eight “parcel lockers.” The receptacles make it possible for patrons who can’t get to the post office during business hours to still pick up their packages.
The postmaster said that the lockers are primarily utilized for storing parcels sent to customers who the staff knows are not able to get to the post office on a regular basis.
When a package arrives for someone who does not come in daily, a special key for a designated parcel locker is left in the patron’s mailbox, he explained. Once the customer uses the key to gain access to the locker, the key remains in the lock and can only be removed from the slot by post office personnel.
The lockers are mounted on pedestals and are large enough to accommodate most packages sent through the U.S. Mail.
“The only ones we wouldn’t put in are something that you have to sign for,” Mr. Cron explained.
The innovation to make parcels available has also been very popular and the postmaster said he has space for four additional lockers, if warranted.
“The people like the service a lot,” he noted.
He added, “I was actually surprised; I put in the request and its approved the next day.”
Mr. Cron said when the changes were first implemented, he spent a lot of time out in the lobby area explaining the new offerings to customers.
The postmaster’s introduction to 24-hour lobby service came during his seven-year tenure the Lake Katrine Post Office. He recalled that the post office had put out an e-mail to determine which departments were interested in offering this service and he introduced the plan at that office. Having witnessed the customer satisfaction with this innovation, Mr. Cron felt like these expanded services would be welcomed at the Margaretville Post Office.
In conjunction with the 24-hour access, additional exterior lighting has been installed at the facility.
The Margaretville postmaster was named to his current position last June. He had previously worked at the local postal facility from the fall of 1998 to spring 2000 and said he’d always wanted the opportunity to back, if a position opened.