• Forecast
  • News Tip
  • Categories
Temperature Precipitation
Estimated read time
1m 20s

Begich announces rollback of parcel post rates

By Lauren Maxwell 8:07 PM February 6, 2014

Rural Alaskans say they were taken by surprise

ANCHORAGE – Alaska’s Democratic senator said he’s convinced the Postal Service to roll back a rate increase that took many rural Alaskans by surprise.

The rate to mail parcels over 50 pounds went up Jan. 26.

In some cases the prices doubled. Leslie Boelens lives in Aniak and said that’s exactly what happened to her friend.

“A friend of mine was moving, so she packed some boxes that were heavy, 69 pounds, to take and mail parcel post, “ Boelens said. “When she got to the Post Office they said there is no more parcel post, it has to go priority mail, and that’s over $100 a piece!”

Sen. Mark Begich said the rollback will probably happen within the next five days.

Whether it remains a permanent rate reduction depends on a study the Postal Service will undertake that looks at competition in the marketplace. Begich said he is confident Alaskans will not be paying twice as much to ship things like groceries to their homes.

“What this means is, consumers in rural Alaska aren’t going to pay 50 percent more like the Post Office wanted,” Begich said. “And second, for businesses that do a lot of business in rural Alaska, shipping goods through the parcel post, they will not see these rate increases. And I believe once we finish the study these rates will stay where they’re at.”

Begich put a number of amendments into the Postal Reform Bill, including one that would protect bypass mail. That bill passed out of the Senate Finance Committee today, but still needs a full vote in the Senate and the House.

Latest Stories

  • Weather

    State, municipal plows stay busy after first snowfall of the season

    by Eric Ruble on Oct 21, 21:07

    The first measurable snowfall Friday created a mess on many Southcentral roads. By the evening, most major streets were cleared of snow. However, many side streets had not yet seen a plow. Both the Alaska Department of Transportation and the street maintenance division of the Anchorage municipality plow the busiest thoroughfares first. For DOT, prioritizing […]

  • News

    AFN: A battleground for Alaska’s political candidates

    by Liz Raines on Oct 21, 20:55

    This year’s Alaska Federation of Natives (AFN) convention is the place to be for anyone running for public office. It’s an opportunity to get their name out among thousands of Alaska Native people from across the state, and ask for their vote — a powerful vote. Next month’s election is front and center at the annual […]

  • News

    Local homeless shelters were full before snow fell, now overflowing

    by Lauren Maxwell on Oct 21, 19:59

    While some welcomed the first measurable snowfall Friday, for others winter weather is putting pressure on an already strained housing situation in Anchorage. Staff at local homeless shelters say their facilities have been overflowing for weeks. Lisa Caldeira, program manager at the Brother Francis Shelter, said there was no room even before the snow fell. […]

  • Lifestyle

    Anchorage students enjoy a day off with fresh powder

    by Shannon Ballard on Oct 21, 19:09

    What’s better than the first significant snowfall? When it happens on a day that students in the Anchorage School District already have off. Friday was an in-service day, so instead of racing to class, best friends Oceana Gamel Howes, Ava Evans, and Emily Robinson spent the morning speeding down the popular sledding hill at Service […]

  • News

    Alaska unemployment rate inches up to 6.9 percent last month

    by Associated Press on Oct 21, 18:55

    Alaska’s unemployment rate inched up to 6.9 percent in September, hitting its highest level since the summer of 2014. The state labor department says last month’s preliminary seasonally adjusted rate was up from 6.8 percent in August and 6.5 percent in September 2015. The national unemployment rate stood at 5 percent last month. Alaska’s rate […]

  • News

    First snow keeps Anchorage tire shops busy with winter changeover

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 21, 16:21

    The first sign of winter brought in big business for Johnson’s Tire Service when many people awoke to snow on Friday morning and realized they still had summer tires on their vehicles. “It’s a little insane,” said Johnson’s manager Michael Hagler. “It’s a whole ‘nother monster to work in a tire shop in changeover season.” […]

  • DJ Spencer Lee’s Holiday Pajama Jam: A party for the whole family

    by Daybreak Staff on Oct 21, 15:41

    Looking trip the light fantastic with the whole family — in your pajamas? DJ Spencer Lee has you covered with his Holiday Pajama Jam. The event is part of his popular series of Baby Loves Disco events and he will be joined by Victamone. Holiday Pajama Jam Sunday, December 4 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. at Williwaw […]

  • Grand jury formally indicts man accused of shooting Fairbanks officer

    by Associated Press on Oct 21, 15:16

    The man accused of shooting a Fairbanks police officer has been formally indicted by a grand jury. Fairbanks District Attorney Gregg Olson says the grand jury indicted Anthony G. Jenkins-Alexie Thursday with attempted murder and seven other counts. Seven charges are identical to the counts originally charged in a complaint against Jenkins-Alexie, plus one additional […]