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Times News to partner with USPS for delivery

Beginning March 1, The Valley Times-News’ subscribers will receive their local news delivered directly to their mailboxes five days weekly, Tuesday through Saturday.

The change to postal delivery is to improve efficiency and consistency, and to maximize the newspapers’ ability to invest in more local news coverage for the community.

“We are proud to partner with the United States Postal Service for delivery,” said Baker Ellis, publisher of The Times-News. “This will allow us same-day delivery directly into our customers’ mailboxes. So, whenever subscribers get their mail, they will receive that day’s edition of the newspaper.

“The postal service is the most efficient way to deliver the newspaper, as postal carriers already stop at our customers’ households. This change will allow us to better serve our customers, maximize our investment in more local news coverage for the community and improve our products as we work to grow readership.”

Times-News newspaper carriers were informed of the change earlier this week. Mail delivery will begin completely with the Thursday, March 1 edition. The Times-News will continue to be available online and through subscriptions to the E-edition.

“We appreciate all our newspaper carriers and those who have helped provide this service over the years. We value their hard work and their friendship.” Ellis said. “We are working with each of them to make this a smooth transition for all involved.”

Subscribers who have previously paid for their newspaper subscription directly to newspaper carriers will pay for their subscriptions in the Valley Times-News office beginning in March, either in person or via phone call. Subscription prices will remain the same.

The Times-News will continue to be available in grocery stores, convenience markets and gas stations by 12 p.m. each day.

“We appreciate all of our readers and we will continue to place the highest priority on customer service and satisfaction,” Ellis said.  “We are committed to offering the very best in fair and accurate local news coverage. These changes will only enhance our ability to meet the ever-changing and growing needs of our community.”

Subscribers with questions are urged to call 334-644-1101 with questions.

 

Q&A: Learn more about The Times-News change to mail delivery

Question: Why is The Times-News changing from delivery by newspaper carriers to the U.S. Postal Service?

Answer: Partnering with the postal service allows us to deliver the daily newspaper in the most reliable, timely and cost-effective way. It ensures guaranteed delivery each day for our subscribers and allows us to invest our resources in outstanding local news coverage.

Question: When will I receive my newspaper?

Answer: You will receive the newspaper with your normal mail delivery on the day of publication.

Question: When will the Times-News begin delivery by the U.S. Postal Service?

Answer: Complete mail delivery will begin March 1, 2018. Select subscribers will begin receiving their newspaper through the mail earlier than this date.

Question: Will the newspaper cost more?

Answer: No, our subscription rates have not changed. You will still receive five issues per week at the same rate.

Question: What if I don’t receive my newspaper or don’t receive it on the day of publication?

Answer: Please contact the newspaper office first at 334-644-1106 or circulation@valleytimes-news.com. We will check the status of your account before contacting the post office, will work to get you that day’s newspaper.

Question: Will there be any change in news coverage or items in the newspaper?

Answer: The new Weekend edition will allow us to provide much timelier print coverage of Friday night high school sports. Otherwise, news coverage should not be significantly affected. Previously, our newspaper was printed at 10:30 a.m. each publication day. Now, it will be printed just after midnight the same day it is delivered. You will still receive next-day coverage of local government meetings and high school sports. Print coverage of weekend events will be in Tuesday’s edition, and digital coverage, including any breaking news updates, will be provided at www.valleytimes-news.com

Question: How will holidays affect newspaper delivery?

Answer: There are 10 postal holidays we will not publish a newspaper: New Year’s Day, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Presidents Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Columbus Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Question: Will I still be able to buy The Times-News in stores and from sidewalk newsstands?

Answer: Yes, we have a host of gas stations, convenience stores, grocery stores and other vendors that carry The Times-News, and now you will be able to pick up a copy by 12 p.m. each day.

Question: Can I put my subscription on vacation hold or stop?

Answer: Yes, if you would like to put your newspaper on hold and receive back issues after returning from vacation, you have two options. Your best option is to contact the post office and have all of your mail held. You will get the newspaper with other mail held when you return. If you prefer The Times-News handle the vacation stop, we are happy to hold your newspapers at our office, where you can pick them up when you return from vacation.

Question: Will my newspaper be delivered to my post office box?

Answer: Yes, just like your regular mail each day.

Question: What will happen to the newspaper carriers?

Answer: Our carriers, who work as independent contractors, will be provided transitional pay. The Times-News is paying its carriers for the entire month of February to thank them for their service and to help them while they seek other work.

Question: What if I pay my carrier for my subscription?

Answer: All payments will now be accepted at our office. For your convenience, we will send you two renewal notices through the mail. The first will be sent a month before your subscription expires and another two weeks later. You can pay by check, credit card, bank draft or hand-delivery at our office on North 20th Street in Lanett.

Question: Who can I contact with questions or issues?

Answer: Please call our customer service team at 334-644-1106.