Availability of Data Supporting the Postal Service's Claimed Savings and Costs of Cluster Box Deliveries

GGD-85-25: Published: Jan 31, 1985. Publicly Released: Feb 19, 1985.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO determined the existence and availability of data supporting the Postal Service's claims regarding the savings and procurement and maintenance costs associated with its cluster mailbox program.

GAO found that, according to Postal Service records, two early studies had been conducted on the subject. The first study identified delivery costs for door and curb line services, and the second identified delivery costs for cluster boxes. The studies covered different delivery routes comprising several types of business and residential areas and cost of delivery data which included box purchase, installation, maintenance, carrier-associated, supervisory, and transportation costs. The Service has periodically revised delivery costs based on its estimate that these costs increase at an annual rate of 10 percent. Although the Service has developed and updated costs for door, curb line, and cluster box delivery services, GAO could not review the data used to develop these costs because the Service had not retained the data. The Postal Service has a new study planned to determine current cost comparisons.

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