Post office, postal workers reach contract deal

The Associated Press
Monday, March 14, 2011; 2:23 PM

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Postal Service and the American Postal Workers Union said Monday they have reached tentative agreement on a new contract.

If ratified by union membership, the deal would run through May 20, 2015 and cover about 205,000 postal employees. The union said the agreement calls for raises totaling 3.5 percent in three steps and protects jobs.

In separate negotiations the post office and 67,000-member National Rural Letter Carriers Association are still talking. Contracts with two other unions expire in November.

The post office has suffered significant losses in recent years due to the recession and movement of business to the Internet. It has cut staff and is looking for other ways to reduce costs.

© 2011 The Associated Press