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Colorado City postman says USPS abandoned community, post office remains closed

COLORADO CITY, Colo. (KRDO) -- After providing postal services to the community of Colorado City for less than a month, the most recently contracted postal worker with the left. 13 Investigations has learned what caused the abrupt departure.

Terry Irick, a resident from Pueblo, agreed to start providing postal services to the people of Colorado City starting July 1, 2022. Irick would work out of the same location on the 9000 block of S. Interstate 25 that had been operating as the community’s post office since 2019. 

However, less than a month later on July 29, 2022, Irick left.

A spokesperson for USPS says they were notified late last week that the previous contract holder "chose to terminate their contract and their responsibility to the local community in operating the Colorado City Post Office."

Irick told 13 Investigates the reason for his departure stems from USPS refusing to address vital issues.

He says the Postmaster in Pueblo abandoned him as soon as he took the helm in Colorado City on July 1, and he was never properly trained for the workload. On top of that, Irick says the infrastructure in place was set up to fail, not to succeed.

Irick says he was paying business expenses out of pocket because a revenue stream wouldn’t be in place for weeks. 

His concerns were brought to USPS’ attention multiple times, however, Irick says he rarely received responses. 

The previous USPS contract holder in Colorado City operated a post-office-bakery hybrid business starting in August of 2019. She gave notice to USPS in February of 2022 that she would relinquish her contract on June 8, 2022. Irick says he was also planning on operating hybrid style business along with postal services. However, instead of bagels and muffins, Irick wanted to provide IT support to businesses and residents in Colorado City.

Since his departure, Colorado City residents have been forced to drive more than 50 miles round trip just to get their mail at the north side post office in Pueblo. 

This is not the first time the people of Colorado City have been without a local post office. Back in 2019, residents were forced to travel to Pueblo to get their mail for more than a month before the hybrid bakery-post office opened. 

USPS set up a mobile post office in the Colorado City community to deliver out out of from June 9 to the 15 after the bakery-post office closed in June of this year. However, the temporary spot was short-lived. 

"This ended up being a safety hazard as both customers and our employees were out in the hot June sun," a spokesperson for USPS told 13 Investigates. "We temporarily brought the mail to the Pueblo Main Post Office until the new contract holder was established on July 1."

According to the USPS, Colorado City residents can pick up their mail at the Pueblo Main Post Office at 1022 Fortino Blvd, Pueblo, CO 81008 Monday through Friday and on Saturday from 10:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. There is a separate retail line dedicated solely to Colorado City residents. 

“We apologize for this inconvenience. This is only a temporary solution until we can evaluate our options in Colorado City,” a spokesperson with the USPS Strategic Communications team told 13 Investigates.  

In regards to Irick’s claims, USPS declined to comment to 13 Investigates

Article Topic Follows: News
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Dan Beedie

Dan is a reporter with the 13 Investigates team. Learn more about Dan here.

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