[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 238 (Wednesday, December 13, 2017)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 58580-58582]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-26740]



39 CFR Part 111

Revenue Deficiency

AGENCY: Postal ServiceTM.

ACTION: Proposed rule.


SUMMARY: The Postal Service is proposing to amend Mailing Standards of 
the United States Postal Service, Domestic Mail Manual (DMM[supreg]) to 
clarify the Postal Service revenue deficiency policy.

DATES: Submit comments on or before January 12, 2018.

ADDRESSES: Mail or deliver written comments to the manager, Product 
Classification, U.S. Postal Service, 475 L'Enfant Plaza SW, Room 4446, 
Washington, DC 20260-5015. If sending comments by email, include the 
name and address of the commenter and send to 
Pro[email protected], with a subject line of ``Verification 
Standards''. Faxed comments are not accepted.
    You may inspect and photocopy all written comments, by appointment 
only, at USPS[supreg] Headquarters Library, 475 L'Enfant Plaza SW, 11th 
Floor North, Washington, DC, 20260. These records are available for 
review on Monday through Friday, 9 a.m.-4 p.m., by calling 202-268-

[[Page 58581]]

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Janet Meddick at (202) 268-2652, 
Pierre DeFelice at 724-993-3596, or Garry Rodriguez at (202) 268-7281.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Postal Service is proposing to amend DMM 
section 604.10.0, Revenue Deficiency, to update the definition of a 
revenue deficiency, as well as the designation of Postal Service 
contacts for submitting appeals. The Postal Service also proposes to 
add sections to provide the definition of a mailer, the description of 
assessments and mailer's responsibilities, and the policy on assessed 
revenue deficiencies. We believe that these revisions will ensure the 
proper payment of postage while providing a superb customer experience 
from sender to receiver.
    Additionally, the Postal Service will revise subsection 607.2.1 to 
include the relocation of subsection 604.10.2, Nonprofit USPS Marketing 
Mail, as new 607.2.1.2, Nonprofit USPS Marketing Mail Decision.

List of Subjects in 39 CFR Part 111

    Administrative practice and procedure, Postal Service.

    Although exempt from the notice and comment requirements of the 
Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C. 553(b), (c)) regarding proposed 
rulemaking by 39 U.S.C. 410(a), the Postal Service invites public 
comments on the following proposed revisions to Mailing Standards of 
the United States Postal Service, Domestic Mail Manual (DMM), 
incorporated by reference in the Code of Federal Regulations. See 39 
CFR 111.1.
    Accordingly, 39 CFR part 111 is proposed to be amended as follows:


1. The authority citation for 39 CFR part 111 continues to read as 

    Authority:  5 U.S.C. 552(a); 13 U.S.C. 301-307; 18 U.S.C. 1692-
1737; 39 U.S.C. 101, 401, 403, 404, 414, 416, 3001-3011, 3201-3219, 
3403-3406, 3621, 3622, 3626, 3632, 3633, and 5001.

2. Revise the Mailing Standards of the United States Postal Service 
Domestic Mail Manual (DMM) as follows:

Mailing Standards of the United States Postal Service, Domestic Mail 
Manual (DMM)

* * * * *

600 Basic Standards for All Mailing Services

* * * * *

604 Postage Payment Methods and Refunds

* * * * *

10.0 Revenue Deficiency

10.1 General

    [Revise 10.1 by adding text to read as follows:]
    The revenue deficiency process is an administrative process that 
supplements and does not diminish any rights the Postal Service has to 
recover revenue deficiencies through other legally available methods, 
such as when the deficiency arises as a result of fraud, 
misrepresentation, or the misuse of PC Postage products or other 
Postage Evidencing Systems.
    [Revise the heading and text of 10.1.1 to read as follows:]

10.1.1 Definitions

    Revenue deficiency definitions are as follows:
    a. Revenue deficiency: means a shortage or underpayment of postage 
or fees that has been calculated and assessed to a mailer. Unless 
assessed under other applicable postal regulations, revenue 
deficiencies are generally assessed as provided herein by the 
Postmaster; manager, Business Mail Entry; the program manager, Revenue 
and Compliance, or other postal official, who issues a written 
notification to the mailer citing the amount of the deficiency and the 
    b. Mailer: A mailer is defined as the mail owner or an individual 
or entity that prepares or presents a mailing to the Postal Service and 
includes those who allow others to use a postage meter or PC postage 
product (collectively ``postage evidence system''--see 604.4.1.1 and 
604.4.1.2) that has been authorized for use by the individual or 
    [Renumber 10.1.2, Appeal of Ruling, as 10.1.3 and add new 10.1.2 to 
read as follows:]

10.1.2 Assessments

    Postal officials review mailings, postage statements, and other 
relevant documentation in assessing a revenue deficiency. Mailers are 
required to cooperate and provide any documentation or information 
requested by postal officials during the review and assessment process. 
A mailer's failure to provide requested documentation or information 
during a review may result in a negative inference concerning the 
documentation or information requested.

10.1.3 Appeal of Ruling

    [Revise the introductory text of 10.1.3 to read as follows:]
    Except as provided in 4.4.4 through 4.4.5, and 703.1.0, a mailer 
may appeal a revenue deficiency assessment by sending a written appeal 
to the postmaster or manager in 10.1.3a through 10.1.3c within 30 days 
of receipt of the notification. In all cases, the mailer may be asked 
to provide more information or documentation to support the appeal. 
Failure to do so within 30 days of the request is grounds for denying 
an appeal. Any decision that is not appealed as prescribed becomes the 
final agency decision. Mailers may send appeals as follows:
* * * * *
    [Revise the text of item b to read as follows:]
    b. To the Postmaster; manager, Business Mail Entry; program 
manager, Revenue and Compliance; or other postal official for revenue 
deficiencies for postage. The appeal is then forwarded to the manager, 
PCSC, who issues the final agency decision.
* * * * *
    [Add new 10.1.4 to read as follows:]

10.1.4 Assessed Revenue Deficiencies

    Assessed revenue deficiencies may be subject to the following:
    a. If a mailer fails to tender payment to the Postal Service within 
30 days of receipt of a final agency decision, or fails to comply with 
the terms or conditions of a payment plan agreed to by the Postal 
Service concerning the final agency decision, or is suspected by the 
Postal Service of continuing to repeatedly short pay postage, the 
Postal Service may:
    1. Deduct from the mailer's trust account or any other funds in 
USPS possession any deficiencies incurred within 12 months of the date 
of the final mailing on which the deficiency was assessed.
    2. Initiate debt collection procedures.
    3. Restrict or suspend discounted mailing privileges with the 
concurrence of the manager, Revenue Assurance and Vice President 
Controller, or as otherwise allowed by regulation, or in accordance 
with any agreement with the mailer.
    b. Discounted mailing privileges may be suspended or restricted 
regardless of payment status of an assessed revenue deficiency if 
underpayment of postage occurs again after a mailer has been assessed a 
revenue deficiency.
    c. Interest on assessed revenue deficiencies will accrue at a rate 
of 6% per annum beginning 30 days after the receipt of the final agency 
decision and will continue until the debt is paid.
    d. Other fees and costs related to an assessed revenue deficiency 
may be

[[Page 58582]]

collected as allowed by law or regulation.
    [Delete 10.2 in its entirety.]
* * * * *

607 Mailer Compliance and Appeals of Classification Decisions

* * * * *

2.0 Rulings on Mailing Standards

    [Revise the heading of 2.1 to read as follows:]

2.1 Decisions

    [Move text of 2.1 under new heading 2.1.1, Local Decision to read 
as follows:]

2.1.1 Local Decision

    A mailer who disagrees with a classification decision by a local 
Post Office, whether on a pending or a proposed mailing, may send a 
written appeal to the postmaster within 30 days. The appeal is 
forwarded to the manager, Pricing and Classification Service Center 
(PCSC). The manager, PCSC issues the final agency decision. Only the 
manager, PCSC may rule on an appeal or initial request for a ruling on 
an exception to a USPS standard in the DMM.
    [Add new 2.1.2, Nonprofit USPS Marketing Mail Decision, to read as 

2.1.2 Nonprofit USPS Marketing Mail Decision

    Nonprofit mailers have two levels of appeal. They may appeal 
revenue deficiency assessments as follows:

    If the initial revenue                          Second-level appeal
deficiency assessment was made     First-level         and final USPS
              by:                     appeal              decision
Postmaster; manager, Business   manager, PCSC      manager, Product
 Mail Entry; manager, Revenue    (see 608.8.0 for   Classification (see
 and Compliance; or other        address).          608.8.0 for
 Postal official.                                   address).
manager, PCSC.................  manager, Product   vice president,
                                 Classification.    Marketing (see
                                                    608.8.0 for

    All appeals must be submitted in writing within 30 days of the 
previous USPS decision. Any decision that is not appealed as prescribed 
becomes the final agency decision; no appeals are available within the 
USPS beyond the second appeal.
* * * * *
    We will publish an appropriate amendment to 39 CFR part 111 to 
reflect these changes if this proposal is adopted.

Stanley F. Mires,
Attorney, Federal Compliance.
[FR Doc. 2017-26740 Filed 12-12-17; 8:45 am]