LAKESHORE RANCH, Fla. (WFLA) – Many people living in the gated community of Lakeshore Ranch in Pasco County are expressing their frustration to 8 On Your Side about a package delivery issue.
The United States Postal Service is refusing to deliver packages that don’t fit in the clubhouse parcel boxes to homes based on a “half-mile rule.” The rule says that because the mailboxes located at the clubhouse are more than half a mile from the houses, they don’t have to deliver.
The packages are then taken to the USPS location four miles from the development. However, neighbors tell us FedEx and UPS have never hidden behind such a rule and always deliver to the front door of homes.
8 On Your Side is speaking with one person living in the neighborhood who is legally blind and doesn’t have the ability to drive themselves four miles down the road to the brick and mortar USPS store to get packages.
Another neighbor we spoke with loves online shopping and says the convenience of online shopping is negated when she has to drive four miles away to pick up packages. This poses a problem with Amazon deliveries that use USPS because residents have to go to the brick and mortar building to pick up their boxes. She says it’s an extra headache during the holidays or birthdays when they are expecting a lot of packages.
USPS did reach back out to 8 On Your Side around 4:00 pm Tuesday and said the Land O’ Lakes Postmaster, Mike Fernandez, plans to visit with residents and the HOA Board within the coming days to find a resolution to this problem. USPS said concerned residents can also visit Fernandez at his workplace, 5230 Land O’ Lakes Blvd.
The full statement from USPS from the Tampa Spokesman said:
The Postal Service appreciates its customers and strives to provide excellent service. We apologize for any inconvenience that Pasco County customers may be experiencing. When packages do not fit in neighborhood parcel lockers, rural carriers make every attempt to deliver the parcels while abiding by the terms of their contract. If a delivery cannot be made, the parcel is taken to the Post Office, where it is held for customer pick-up. Lakeshore Ranch customers are encouraged to reach out directly to the Land O Lakes Postmaster, who is always available to discuss other options.David Walton, USPS Corporate Communications
We found the USPS National Delivery Planning Standards guide online for builders and developers. The guide states residents should not be required to travel an unreasonable distance to their cluster mailbox location, typically no more than a block from their home, to get the mail. Residents we spoke with have to travel more than a mile to get to their mailboxes. You can read more about the “half-mile rule” for rural delivery by clicking here.
8 On Your Side went inside the clubhouse to speak with the clubhouse manager – who would not comment and put us in contact with the Development Planning and Financial Group – to get answers about how to fix this problem. They redirected us to the Green Acres Home Owners Association. We have not heard back from them.
Check back for updates to this developing story.
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