Contact: John Nalbone
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Township Wins USPS Appeal For For New Zip Code Survey
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ – (Sept. 11, 2017) - Robbinsville Township has been notified by the United States Postal Service (USPS) that it intends to conduct a new survey of Robbinsville residents to gauge their interest in a new, independent zip code.
The time frame to begin the new survey is not yet known.
"This is a major win for our town," Robbinsville Mayor Dave Fried said. "All we asked for from the very beginning of this process was to be treated fairly and in accordance with USPS policies. We certainly appreciate another opportunity to secure an independent zip code for our residents and businesses, which have suffered from inconsistent mail delivery, confusing GPS signals in regards to street directions and significantly higher insurance rates due to the use of 08691 and its current link to Trenton. At the end of the day this is a justified and welcome decision, and we hope our residents will return the new surveys to the USPS with the same enthusiasm they did last summer."
The USPS denied Robbinsville's initial request in 2016 despite the fact close to 96 percent of residents returned surveys in favor of the change, which ultimately was denied due to the USPS claim Robbinsville failed to meet the required response rate.
According to the August 31 letter sent by USPS Manager of Rural Delivery James J. Boldt, the USPS "envisions conducting a new survey of Robbinsville residents using the criteria outlined in the Management instruction, provided mutual agreement between the Postal Service and Robbinsville Township is reached.
"This is a promising development,” said Robbinsville Business Administrator Joy Tozzi, who has been on the front lines of the zip code change for the past seven years. “The fact our residents achieved the desired outcome after initially being denied the zip code change bodes very well. We look forward to the USPS living up to its word and affording us a fair process. Although we will need the residents to once again fill out the survey, we are confident they will be diligent and devoted while working together to achieve the common goal of a zip code exclusive to Robbinsville."
Robbinsville petitioned the USPS for appeal on August 23, 2017, claiming it misrepresented the actual criteria regarding the response rate in the surveys sent to residents last summer.
The Township, in conjunction with the Offices of D-14 Assemblyman Wayne DeAngelo and Congressman Chris Smith, asked in May of 2016 that the USPS conduct the "Robbinsville Township Zip Code Boundary Surveys" in a fair and impartial manner pursuant to the policies stated in its own management instructions (PO-439), which required a simple majority (51 percent) across the board.
However, during the initial survey process, Robbinsville instead was required to return 80 percent of all mailed surveys - with 75 percent of those returned responding in the affirmative for the change. As a result, the request for a new zip code - Robbinsville, NJ 08691 - was denied.
The Township last month formally requested the USPS conduct a new survey and not be forced to wait the requisite 10 years to request another. Robbinsville was not appealing the survey results, but rather the disputed survey criteria and the overall manner in which the agency conducted the survey.