BALTIMORE (WJZ) — USPS Connect, a service the U.S. Postal Service says offers faster local, regional and national delivery for businesses, has launched in Maryland and Washington D.C., the postal service announced.

Following network improvements and the addition of new equipment, the post office created the new service to “fully leverage our network capacity to increase volume and revenue so we can continue to serve the American people with affordable, reliable mail and package delivery,” said Louis DeJoy, Postmaster General and CEO.

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USPS Connect Local allows businesses to drop off packages or documents up to 13 ounces for same-day delivery to local addresses or next-day delivery depending on when the mail is received.

There also new options for regional and national shipments, and USPS said the new program will offer faster returns for customers.

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An audit of local USPS operations released last year found that nine Baltimore region post offices were plagued by delayed mail, inaccurate reporting of mail conditions, and improper scanning.

During a February congressional hearing hosted at the University of Baltimore, Baltimore’s Acting Executive Postmaster Eric Gilbert told lawmakers the agency hired 267 employees between October and December last year to help with the holiday delivery volume.

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For more details on the launch, visit uspsconnect.com.

CBS Baltimore Staff