Published May 3 2016
To the Editor
More than 20 years ago while I was still clerk-treasurer of the Township of Glamorgan Canada Post officials came into my office one day to tell me they were here to look for a business in which to relocate the Gooderham post office.
This was because it was not in the best interest of Canada Post to pay a full-time person to do a part-time job. Because the municipal office was short-staffed council saw the opportunity to leave the post office where it was/is and hire an employee who would do the postal duties part time as well as take care of office overload for the municipality. The municipal auditor considered this an improper use of municipal funds but made no statement to that effect on the municipality’s financial statements which may have resulted in action by the Ministry of Municipal Affairs.
After amalgamation the council of the Municipality of Highlands East has continued to provide postal service in Gooderham even though there came a time when Canada Post refused to share the employee’s time with the municipality. One may have expected the job description to be changed accordingly but Canada Post sets the hours of operation and council has no say in that matter.
The possibility of relocation of the post office is again under consideration and Canada Post will poll local businesses to find a suitable location; whichever business Canada Post chooses will no doubt see an increase in customer traffic e.g. lumber yard grocery store restaurant etc. which would be a boon to any one of them. I also understand that there is a waiting list for mailboxes; another source informs me that a significant housing development proposal for this area whose eventual inhabitants will use the Gooderham post office has recently received county council’s approval to go ahead.
There is no room at the present site to add more mailboxes for all these folks and that is one issue that Canada Post will look at when choosing a place in which to relocate the Gooderham post office. The only people who benefit from the present situation are those who do their mailing at this location and they will lose nothing if the post office is relocated. As for those who might cry “This is all we get for our tax dollars” remember that postal service is a federal responsibility not a municipal one. All ratepayers in Highlands East should welcome a relocation of this service since tax dollars will no longer be supporting it.
Elva Bates Gooderham