MONDAY, Jan. 11 — The United States Postal Service has reversed a decision that would’ve shifted at least three dozen homes in Okemos into the zip code for the city of Williamston.
Meridian Township residents — including Township Manager Frank Walsh — were left confused today after USPS officials announced they were unilaterally swapping out the Okemos zip code for up to 200 residents, shifting them from 48864 to Williamston code 48895.
The postal swap would’ve affected at least three dozen homes, triggering recent concerns about how first responders would navigate emergencies along the eastern border of Okemos after the change, as well as questions over school district boundaries and municipal tax collection.
Postmaster James Trites apologized today, noting the zip codes will remain unchanged despite letters that told residents to expect the upcoming shift.
“After a deep dive into this change, we became aware of a situation that possibly could be life threatening,” Trites wrote in an email this afternoon to Meridian Township and other USPS officials. “It is clear that if someone calls 911, they might not get the help needed in time. Though USPS is trying to be as efficient as possible, public safety will always be a priority.”
Trites listed the following addresses among those that will soon receive letters apologizing for the communication, notifying residents that their zip code will remain the Okemos zip code: 35, 45, 47, 50, 59, 62, 71, 76, 83, 88, 95, 100, 112, 124, 136, 148, 160, 172, 155, 143, 131, 119 and 107 W. Sherwood Rd.; 4720, 4795, 4815, 4820, 4825 and 4830 Sunny Meadow Circle; 35, 55, 60, 75, 80, 95 and 100 Nature Way; as well as 20 and 30 Rolling Meadows Dr.
Earlier today, Walsh said he was “perplexed” by USPS' plans to switch the zip codes, noting that he and other township officials had opposed the concept despite letters from postal officials that had suggested it was a collaborative decision designed to increase efficiencies in postal delivery.