I very much appreciate the replies.
I, too, have considered it to be a development issue. I have tried several labs, and whenever there is some type of error or issue, the lab has always replied with the question: "Is it on the negative?" In all cases, as I recall, it has been on the negative (and the print), and so the lab then immediately absolves itself of any error or mistakes.
I might try another mail order lab, but it would have to come with very solid recommendations, as I have tried five or six labs now.