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Sleepy Hollow to Feds: You Picked the Wrong Post Office

SLEEPY HOLLOW, N.Y. – The Sleepy Hollow Post Office will not go down without a fight angry residents told U.S. Postal Service officials Thursday.

About 75 residents showed up to a meeting with postal service officials at the Village Hall firehouse to protest the possible closing of the post office on Beekman Avenue, still officially called the North Tarrytown branch.

Village Historian Henry Steiner told officials he senses a consensus from the group of “you picked the wrong post office to consider.”

“The Sleepy Hollow Post Office is older than the village,” he said, later adding, “It's woven into the fabric of this community.”

A group of postal officials, led by Richard Ferrari took commemts from village residents for about an hour. Ferrari works in the Westchester District Office.

Ferrari said part of the Postal Service headquarters' decision to study certain branches was geographic location and branches that were less than a mile apart.

Ferrari stressed the dire financial straits of the U.S. Postal Service, saying it was also considering a number of cost-cutting decisions other than closing branches, such as consolidating mail processing plants. He noted that the Postal Service will need more funding by next September, or the whole thing will shut down.

“It won't be the Sleepy Hollow Post Office,” he said. “It'll be everybody.”

Residents derided the Tarrytown Post Office, which they say is too inconvenient. They told officials there's always a line at that branch, and parking is non-existent.

Sleepy Hollow resident and retiree Irene Amato noted that the Sleepy Hollow branch was much more convenient for area residents—even for those not living in the village. “Tarrytown people come here,” she said.

Seniors and residents with disabilities noted the Tarrytown branch harder to access because there are stairs and a long, winding ramp. The Sleepy Hollow Post Office, they noted, is on the ground floor and has plenty of parking nearby.

Business owners told officials they rely on the post office for shipping and other things. If the Sleepy Hollow branch were to close, then they said they’d probably take their business to UPS or Federal Express instead of the Tarrytown Post Office.

Local officials stressed that the community itself was growing.

Sleepy Hollow Mayor Ken Wray urged officials to take into consideration the planned development on the former General Motors site, saying it will add 3,000 people to the village. Wray said the decision to close didn't make sense. Trustee Karin Wompa noted that Tarrytown itself is also growing, so if the Sleepy Hollow Post Office were to close, the burden on the Tarrytown branch would be even greater.

Ferrari noted that Jan. 4 is the final date for the public to submit comments to the Postal Service. He could not say when a decision will be made regarding the closure studies.

It's “loud and clear that a lot of people in this community are not happy the Post Office is closing,” Ferrari said.

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