USPS documents show first-class mail on-time delivery performance for the week of September 19 dropped to 84.23%, a drop of 4.51% in two weeks. This means that the nationwide on-time delivery score for first-class mail is approaching the lows seen in July and August, when the agency experienced significant delays due to significant changes in postal operations.
Punctual delivery of first-class mail took on even greater importance in October because voting mail, like ballot papers, is treated as first-class mail.
Of the 28 states that send ballots to voters, 43% of them are experiencing the worst on-time delivery of first-class mail so far this year. All but two states have seen the timeliness of their mail delivery decrease in the past two weeks.
The USPS attributed some of the last week̵
“To address this, the support teams have been on site and are working with contractor teams to increase staffing and reduce cycle times,” the postal service said in a statement.
The continuing decline in on-time deliveries threatens to undermine promises from the USPS and postmaster general Louis DeJoy to Americans, Congress, and federal judges that the USPS will be able to handle the increased mail from ballot papers.
National collapse fueled by the drop in on-time deliveries in the eastern United States
Six of USPS’s seven regional areas are experiencing a drop in on-time scores for first-class mail delivery. The nationwide decline is largely due to a deep and regional collapse in on-time delivery of first-class mail in the eastern United States.
Although first-class mail on-time performance scores are crater, nationwide on-time delivery scores for marketing mail and periodicals have increased since mid-July and early August. Periodicals are now delivered on time 79.72% of the time, up from less than 70% in early August. Marketing mail is on time 88.68% of the time, up from 81% in early August.
The USPS did not respond to questions from CNN as to why only on-time delivery of first-class mail had declined.