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  • Arne Mortensen

Kalama Postmaster - An Unsatisfactory Bureaucrat


To save you time, I go straight to the point, and offer backup material toward the bottom.

Problem statement: The postmaster in Kalama acts with little to no interest in the clients, you and I, she is entrusted to serve. It is common knowledge that this person has policies which are imperious and make no sense. These policies should be changed, and she should be dismissed.

Abstract of the issue:

  1. UNIFORMITY of SERVICE:In areas of Kalama, the post office offers no mail service, forcing people to purchase a Post Office Box.That reflects a level of discrimination that is unjustified.Why does the postage of some buy delivery but the same postage does not buy it for others?

  2. ARBITRARY REFUSAL of MAIL:Despite proper addressing, the Kalama Post Office will reject mail even if the entire information is included in the address field.This policy is applied randomly and arbitrarily.

  3. FINGER POINTING:Upon a fruitless discussion with the Postmaster, I was told that the policy of no mail delivery was driven by the City of Kalama specifically forbidding individual from putting mailboxes on the sidewalk.The City of Kalama denied that there is such a policy.I was told I could put a mailbox on my sidewalk.

Some Background:

The mailing address for those impacted has developed into the following: usual street address followed by ‘#’ and the PO Box number. This accommodates the fact that some systems, like Amazon, may or may not use USPS, so the address should have both pieces of data. In fact, the City of Kalama as well as the Kalama Post Office explain this approach.

In fact, we, being new to Kalama, were told to use the above address scheme for everything to be mailed. We have been doing that and we “seem” to have received our mail … until now.

If casual discussion is any evidence, problems with this postmaster refusing delivery has been reported by many.

I live within walking distance of the Post Office. My house is on the main route that connects the center to Geranium.

The Facts:

  1. On the 30th of September 2019, a friend from Woodland paid the US Postal service $1.30 to send me a document via normal mail.She wondered why I did not respond.

  2. Her mail was returned to her on the 17th of October.I show a picture of the mail that was returned.She hand delivered it to me on the 19th of October.

  1. I went to the Kalama Post Office on Monday, the 21st of October and spoke to the Postmaster.

  • She stated the addressing scheme applied to packages.BTW, my mail could easily have been viewed to be a package because it was in a 6.5” x 9.5” brown envelope of some thickness.

  • She was not interested in the fact that the address, as she agreed, was unambiguous.She said those were her rules.

  • I asked her to give me the USPS postal regulations by which she made these local regulations.She did not provide any reference.She said those were her rules.

  • I asked her what it would take to get home delivery.She said I needed a mailbox accessible from a postal vehicle and that I had to be on a current route.

  • She said that it was the City of Kalama that forbade the use of mailboxes on the sidewalk.

  • When I asked why, say, Kelso postal service was door to door, she said that the postal union workers were the reason she had no foot carriers in Kalama.

  1. Overall, she was dismissive, arrogant, and made no sense. This is what we get when someone abuses their position in the public sector.


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