Reporters and local residents gather outside the post office during a press conference to raise awareness of the mail arriving late to residents in Englewood outside of the US Post Office at 6559 S. Ashland in Englewood, Thursday, Feb. 4, 2021. | | Anthony Vazquez, Anthony Vazquez/Sun-Times

Members of the Illinois Congressional delegation for months have been pressuring the U.S. Postal Service – run by Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, a Trump appointee – for improvements.

WASHINGTON – The ongoing inability of the U.S. Postal Service to improve service in Chicago is the subject of a congressional field hearing Friday.

The hearing, by the House Committee on Oversight and Reform Subcommittee on Government Operations, is titled, “Waiting on the Mail: Postal Service Standard Drops in Chicago and the Surrounding Area.”

“This hearing will examine the dramatic drops in postal delivery performance, both nationally and in the greater Chicago area,” panel chair Rep. Gerald Connolly, D-Va., said in a statement.

The witnesses are Eddie Morgan, Jr., the Chicago postmaster brought in last June to improve service; Melinda Perez, deputy assistant inspector general for audit in the Postal Service Office of Inspector General and Mack Julion, a representative of the National Association of Letter Carriers.

Some of the witnesses will be joining the hearing virtually from the Dirksen Federal Building.

Rep. Mike Quigley, D-Ill., a member of the committee, said in a statement, “In Chicago, USPS service standards have plummeted, with First-Class mail designated for three-to-five-day delivery arriving on time only 75.7% of the time” and since the beginning of the year, Quigley “has heard from over 1,000 of his constituents who have been receiving mail only a few times per week, with some going a week or more without any mail delivery at all.

“The hearing will examine the root causes of these service delays and how the Postal Service plans to address them, while highlighting the need for robust congressional oversight.” Quigley said.

Chicago area members of the Illinois Congressional delegation have for months now been pressuring the Postal Service — run by Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, a Trump appointee — for improvements.

After the hearing, members of the delegation — all Democrats — will hold a press conference, throwing a spotlight on a major source of constituent complaints. Besides Quigley, House Oversight Committee members include Reps. Danny Davis; Raja Krishnamoorthi and Robin Kelly. Expected to join them will be Sen. Dick Durbin and Reps. Bobby Rush, Jan Schakowsky, Sean Casten and Marie Newman.

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