GOLETA, Calif. -

The United States Postal Service plans to stop delivering mail on Saturdays.  The change is set to take effect in August.

The postal service isn't waiting any longer for permission from Congress to make the change. 

Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe says the agency's financial condition is urgent, and a five day delivery schedule will save about two billion dollars a year.

"This announcement is just one part of a much larger strategy to return the postal service to long term financial stability" said Dohahoe at a news conference.

The postal service lost 16 billion dollars last year alone.  In part - because of the growing popularity of e-mails and on-line bill-pay

Under the plan, letters would be delivered to homes and businesses only from Monday through Friday. Packages would continue to be delivered on Saturdays.

Mail would still be delivered to post office boxes on Saturdays, and post offices now open on Saturdays would remain open.

The postal service has been advocating a shift to five-day delivery for several years, but Congress hasn't approved it.

Congress included a ban on five-day delivery in its appropriations bill. But, because the federal government is now operating under a temporary spending measure, Donahoe says the agency believes it can make the change itself.