By Stetson Miller

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — After months of mail delays, Maryland lawmakers are pressing Postmaster General Louis DeJoy for answers to see how the post office is preparing for the busy holiday shipping season.

Members of Maryland’s congressional delegation including U.S. Senators Chris Van Hollen and Ben Cardin and Congressmen Steny H. Hoyer, Dutch Ruppersberger, John Sarbanes, Kweisi Mfume, Anthony G. Brown, Jamie Raskin, Andy Harris, M.D., and David Trone wrote to DeJoy requesting a report on the USPS’ efforts to ensure mail is delivered in a timely manner for the holidays.

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“Last year’s holiday mail service was a disaster. It was a disaster around the country in Maryland and in Baltimore,” said Senator Van Hollen.

In the letter, the lawmakers asked specific questions about the post office’s preparations for the holiday mail surge, as well as actions it has taken to correct the processing issues identified in Baltimore area mail facilities.

“Baltimore area mail service has been some of the worst in the country so the congressional delegation wrote to Postmaster DeJoy asking him specifically what measures they put in place to make sure that Maryland’s mail delivery and Baltimore’s mail delivery will go smoothly,” said Van Hollen.

Residents of Dundalk have experienced some particularly bad mail delays for months and some residents told WJZ about how bad it was during the holidays last year.

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“It was really bad,” said Wendy Finiff. “Yeah, I got like several presents like after [the holidays].”

Van Hollen said they asked the postmaster for specific information like how many additional package sorting machines have been added, and how many more seasonal workers were hired.

The lawmakers are hoping for a response to the letter by Dec. 1.

“We think that by raising these questions in advance and getting specific information in advance, it will put the right pressure on them to deliver,” said Van Hollen.

The post office’s shipping deadlines for Christmas delivery are:

  • Nov. 6 — APO/FPO/DPO (all ZIP Codes) USPS Retail Ground service
  • Dec. 9 — APO/FPO/DPO (all ZIP Codes) Priority Mail and First-Class Mail
  •  Dec. 15 — USPS Retail Ground service
  •  Dec. 16 — APO/FPO/DPO (except ZIP Code 093) USPS Priority Mail Express Military service
  •  Dec. 17 — First-Class Mail service (including greeting cards)
  •  Dec. 17 — First-class packages (up to 15.99 ounces)
  •  Dec. 17 — Hawaii to/from mainland–Priority Mail and First-Class Mail
  •  Dec. 18 — Priority Mail service
  •  Dec. 18 — Alaska to/from Continental U.S.– First-Class Mail
  •  Dec. 18 — Alaska to/from Continental U.S.– Priority Mail
  •  Dec. 21 — Alaska to/from Continental U.S.– Priority Mail Express
  •  Dec. 21 — Hawaii to/from mainland–Priority Mail Express
  • Dec. 23 — Priority Mail Express* service
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Stetson Miller