Short takes for Sept. 27

Changes are in the mail

THUMBS DOWN: It looks like we’re on track for another postage rate increase, as the U.S. Postal Services wants to raise the cost of a first-class stamp 3 cents to 49 cents. It’s a move the USPS says it must do to offset its budgetary woes. It’s not necessarily the rate increase that gets a thumbs down here, however. The increase would apparently generate $2 billion per year, but that’s hardly enough to bring the USPS in the black (it expects to lose $6 billion this year, according to the Associated Press). What does that mean? It means the USPS will more than likely continue searching for ways to save money, and that means the possibility of having Saturday mail delivery canceled will grow, and we’re not fans of that idea at all. In fact, the Senate has already introduced a bipartisan bill that would end Saturday mail delivery. That would reportedly save another $2 billion. And other changes are also in the works. A bill to shift from door-to-door delivery to cluster boxes and curbside delivery has already been approved by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. Many people are against the notion of ending Saturday mail delivery, but the way we see it, the USPS, sadly, might not have any other choice.

Targeting a healthier workforce

THUMBS UP: It was good to see the My Marshall group’s community health survey garner some good responses. The health care initiative was launched in July with a survey of Marshall area residents and businesses. This week, the group presented the results of the survey. More than 30 businesses responded to the survey, each interested in supporting employee wellness programs and weight management. Seventy-five percent said they have formed a partnership with other organizations to support community health.

State rankings

THUMBS UP: High school volleyball is as strong as ever in southwest Minnesota – maybe the strongest it has ever been. Three area schools – Marshall (No. 1 in Class AA), Minneota (3, Class A) and Tracy-Milroy-Balaton (8, Class A) are all ranked in the top 10 of their respective classes. Dawson-Boyd is ranked 15th. The rankings reinforce what we in the region already know: When it comes to fall sports in this corner of the state, volleyball is king.