Communications Dept Clarifies Funding Supports To Independent Postmasters

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Minister of State Jack Chambers holds special responsibility for Postal Policy at the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications.

In a statement to Tipp Mid West Radio the Department has clarified the funding support being made available to the post office network managed by post masters who are not employees of An Post

€10 million per annum is to be provided by the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications for the period 2023-2025 to An Post.

The funding is being paid monthly for each 12-month period.

There has been over €9.7 million claimed by An Post for 2023 for the network.

All contractor Post Offices are benefiting from the Government funding with the objective of securing the stability of the Network during the three-year funding period.

It also aims to ensure access to important services of social value across the post office network and that there is a network of sufficient scale in place across the country.

The Department says that “The actual details of how the scheme is being operated is a direct matter for An Post.”.

An Post intends to seek a private contractor to operate the Post Office in Tipperary town. Such contractors are paid a fee per transaction in addition to the special three year funding support to deliver an increased income for such operators.

An Post is looking for a contractor that might co-locate the post office service alongside another commercial operation.

Meanwhile the Irish Postmasters Union(IPU) , the body representing private contractors, says it is “unsure what An Post is proposing to any future Postmaster in terms of taking over this Office(Tipperary).”

The Postmasters statement continues “ In fact, our Union received very little notice of An Post’s commercial decision in this and other announced changes and we were not consulted.

The IPU says it cannot “comment as to what An Post is proposing to any prospective Postmaster to facilitate a smooth transition.”