NCHBA was contacted by the HBA of Raleigh-Wake County and the Triad Real Estate and Building Industry Coalition (TREBIC) on behalf of their developer members, who have been required to put Centralized Box Units (CBUs) for mail receipt instead of curbside mailboxes. The CBUs are required in subdivisions where postal service delivery was not established by the date specified in the USPS amended Postal Operations Manual (POM), or approximately April 2012.
The implementation of CBUs is causing adverse effects, the most serious being single-family homes that are occupied and have curbside mailboxes installed, but where these residents are not receiving any mail. Based on conversations with municipal officials, neither the municipalities nor the developers were made aware of the POM changes prior to subdivision plan approval. In some instances, residents of earlier phases of the subdivision are receiving curbside mail delivery, and it is impractical (if not impossible) to retrofit the subdivision plan to accommodate the CBUs in later build-out phases.
NCHBA believes USPS may have the authority to determine the mode of mail delivery. It is our understanding that CBUs are not “required” but simply an option for the Postal Service to choose when adding new deliveries. Members who attended “Bringing Housing Home” visits with our Congressional delegation heard the discussion of this issue. As a follow-up, we are very pleased with the support and assistance received from all members of our Congressional delegation.
Last week, Representative Mark Meadows (11th Congressional District) and staff met with USPS officials in Washington, DC. While the 11th Congressional District is not in the affected USPS District, Rep. Meadows assisted us as a member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. Lead staff in Meadows’ office reported that USPS understands the problem of residents not receiving curbside mail in existing subdivisions and “would like to find areas of common ground.” USPS officials did reiterate the CBUs are the way of the future, due to their cost-savings and the current financial state of the USPS (NCHBA will deal with this issue later…).