Industry Updates

PRC 10-Year Review at a Glance – FAQ Sheet

For a print version, download your copy 10-Year Review FAQ. We will also update this new Frequently Asked Questions are identified.

For a more in-depth understanding, check out More than the 10-Year Review when Planning for the Future – A Wobbly Three-Legged Stool
It dives into not only the PRC’s proposal, understand the USPS Board of Governors situation as well as legislative considerations.

What is the PRC 10-Year Review?

In 2006, the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act (PAEA) was put in place to regulate rates and classes for market-dominant products. Part of the law required the Postal Regulatory Commission, PRC, review the past 10 years of the rate and classification system to determine if the system achieved the goals of PAEA which were to create a flexible, stable, predictable, and streamlined ratemaking system that ensures the Postal Service’s financial health and maintains high quality service standards and performance.

What were the PRC’s key finding?

The PRC determined that some of PAEA objectives are being met:

  • Predictable, stable rates
  • Less burdensome process
  • Improved transparency
  • Some are not
  • Adequate USPS revenues
  • Pricing efficiency
    • Non-compensatory products
    • Workshare passthroughs

Is this a final determination or rule?

No, this is a proposal

What do does the PRC propose for the CPI cap?

The Commission proposal would maintain a price-cap system. The Commission determined that it is necessary to maintain such a mechanism to create predictability and stability, and seeks to build upon, rather than replace the CPI price cap by providing discrete amounts of additional rate authority.

What are the proposed increases?

  • 2% Over CPI: Proposes a 2% rate authority over the CPI cap for five years
  • 1% Performance-Based Authority: Proposes an additional 1% performance-based rate authority. The PRC divided the 1% point of performance-based rate authority between an operational efficiency-based standard (0.75 percentage points), and service quality-related criteria (0.25 percentage points).
  • 2% Non-Compensatory: For products that do not cover costs, the PRC proposes price increases that are 2% higher than other elements of the class.

What factors will be used to determine how the pricing authority will be applied?

In the Commission’s review they determined that over the past 10 years, the Postal Service set most discounts substantially above or substantially below 100 percent. The proposal includes passthrough bands:

  • 75-125% for Periodicals
  • 85-115% for all others

The proposal includes a three-year phase-in to bring all existing discounts into compliance.

What does this mean catalogs?

If the proposal moves forward, the 2% over CPI would be applied. An additional 1% is the Postal Service met the performance-based objectives. Rate authority is not applied equally across all rate cells. Instead, the authority has historically been applied to optimize revenue, applying to higher-volume sortations, or used to improve cost coverage.

The proposal includes passthrough bands of 85-115%. Dropship for Marketing Mail flats has many rate cells that are below 85% passthroughs. This may be an opportunity for a reduced impact as rates are adjusted to meet the goals of the proposals. Also, for Carrier Route, many passthroughs are also low. Solutions like co-mail to drive carrier route and high density will help reduce the impact for some mailers.

What does this mean for Marketing Mail Letters?

If the proposal moves forward, the 2% over CPI would be applied. An additional 1% is the Postal Service met the performance-based objectives. Rate authority is not applied equally across all rate cells. Instead, the authority has historically been applied to optimize revenue, applying to higher-volume sortations, or used to improve cost coverage.

The proposal includes passthrough bands of 85-115%.

What does this mean for magazines?

If the proposal moves forward, the 2% over CPI would be applied. An additional 1% is the Postal Service met the performance-based objectives. Rate authority is not applied equally across all rate cells. Instead, the authority has historically been applied to optimize revenue, applying to higher-volume sortations, or used to improve cost coverage.

For Periodicals, where the entire class is non-compensatory, the PRC proposes that USPS must use all available rate authority including an additional 2 percent as applies to non-compensatory products within classes that cover their costs.

The passthrough band is 75-125% with a three-year phase-in to bring all existing discounts into compliance.

What is the timeline?

Winter 2006: On December 20, 2006, the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act (PAEA) was signed into law and created a modern system of regulating rates and classes for Market Dominant products. The PAEA also mandated that the Commission review this system 10 years later to determine if it is achieving the objectives established by Congress. December 20, 2016 was the ten-year anniversary of the PAEA.

Winter 2016: On December 20, 2016, the Commission issued an Order begin the review. The Order described the approximate structure and timeframe within which the Commission will complete its review, as well as defined the opportunities for public comment within the review.

Spring 2017: Initial comment period closed. During the public comment period of the ongoing rate review, the PRC received more than 70 comments.

Winter 2017: December 1, 2017: Commission issued an Order including its findings and, if necessary, preparatory rule-making information for any changes to the system. This begins a 90-day comment period.

Spring 2018: Comments are due no later than March 1, 2018. Reply comments are due no later than March 30, 2018.

That 30 days could extend longer. If it did move forward, the there is an anticipated 45 – 90 day implementation period. This is a very fluid situation. It could be as early as June or push into 2019. Most expect the proposal will change and we won’t see implementation in 2018.

How are comments filed?

Visit the PRC website to create an account for comment submission.

Watch Fairrington’s Industry News for the Latest Updates

 


More than the 10-Year Review when Planning for the Future

A Wobbly Three-Legged Stool

On December 1, 2017, the Postal Regulatory Commission, PRC, announced their 10-Year Review proposal. But the conversation needs to go beyond their findings. There are several forces at work to take into consideration when planning.

This article takes a deeper dive into not only the PRC’s findings beyond our December 1 posting. It also provides a recap of the USPS Board of Governors situation as well as legislative considerations. While independent discussions, the movement in one area may impact the others or compound the effects. For example, if legislation was passed during the comment period, it is unknown if the PRC would change their findings or if we could have a situation that adds proposed increases by the PRC to a partial exigent postage increase through legislation.

For planning, the approved January 2018 rate increase is the certain item.

The rest, a bit of a wobbly stool… Download More than the 10-Year Review when Planning for the Future.

 


USPS Move Update Reminder – Census Based Approach Nearing

Reminder, the USPS is changing the method for measuring compliance for meeting the Move Update requirement to a Census based approach.

This change was approved by the Postal Regulatory Commission in August. The Move Update filing is for a $0.08 per-piece assessment for noncompliance when the 0.5% threshold is exceeded.

The automated Assessment Process will begin on March 11, 2018 and will be based on February 2018 data.

Today the USPS measures compliance at an individual mailing level. The new method utilizes scans from Mail Processing Equipment to determine if addresses for First-Class and USPS Marketing Mail, letters and flats, have been updated within 95 days of the mailing date. Compliance will be measured for eDoc submitters across a calendar month.

The assessment process is outlined in the USPS Publication for Streamlined Mail Acceptance for Letters and Flats.


Southern California Wildfires

Southern California Wildfires Force Thousands to Flee. In the wake of massive fires, the USPS has distributed an industry alert.

Pacific Area – Wildfires Update – Sierra Coastal District

(California)

Updated: Wednesday December 6, 2017 @5:15 pm

The Pacific Area and Sierra Coastal District are reporting the following impacts related to wildfires in the area.

Due to the rapidly changing conditions, we are now reporting the following Post Office is open:

  • Ojai, 93023, 93024.

The following Post Office is open for mail pick-up only (no mail delivery):

Oak View, 93022

It is expected to be a rapidly changing situation as winds are expected to increase. Mailers should monitor http://about.usps.com/news/service-alerts/business-weather-updates.htm for the latest disruption information.

As always, Fairrington will update clients directly impacted by the weather.

 


10 Year Review, PRC Releases Findings

The Postal Regulatory Commission was required to initiate a review of the system for regulating rates and classes for Market Dominant products to determine if the ratemaking system has achieved the objectives of 39 U.S.C. 3622(b), taking into account the factors enumerated in 39 U.S.C. 3622(c). On December 20, 2016, the Commission began its review.

Today, December 1, 2017, Chairman Robert Taub hosted a media conference to discuss the Commission’s findings. The Chairman opened with a recap of the requirement and the process that covered 9 objectives and 14 factors of PAEA.

Chairman Taub stated that “This notice is just that — a proposal. Nothing in this proposal will be final until after public comments are received and considered by the Commission and a final rule is adopted.” There will be a 90 day public comment period.

In the announcement he stated that the system has met some, but not all objectives set for it by statute.

Key areas:

CPI Cap: Commission proposal would maintain a price cap system. Maintain a price cap system. The Commission determined that it is necessary to maintain such a mechanism to create predictability and stability. The Commission seeks to build upon, rather than replace, the CPI price cap by providing discrete amounts of additional rate authority.

  • The PRC is also suggesting 2% rate authority over the cap for 5 years, and another 1% as performance-based rate authority.
  • For products that do not cover costs, underwater, the PRC proposes price increases that are 2% higher than other elements of the class.

Workshare: Per Chairman Taub “The 2006 Law tasked the Commission with ensuring that these discounts do not exceed the cost that the Postal Service avoids as a result of workshare activity, unless certain limited exceptions are met. Objective one of the 2006 Law required that the Postal Service, quote, maximize incentives to reduce costs and increase efficiency, end quote. The ratemaking system achieves pricing efficiency when prices adhere as closely as practicable to what is known as efficient component pricing. To adhere to efficient pricing, workshare discounts should be set equal to the costs avoided by the Postal Service when the mailer performs the workshare activity, thus producing what’s termed pass-trough’s of 100 percent. In our review, the Commission finds that the Postal Service, during the past 10 years, set most discounts substantially above or substantially below 100 percent. This is problematic because such discounts send inefficient price signals to mailers, and therefore reduce productive efficiency in the postal sector.”

  • The Commission proposes pass through bands of 75%-125% for Periodicals
  • 85%-115% for all others with a three-year phase-in to bring all existing discounts into compliance

The PRC statement is available on their site as well as the full order.


PRC 10 Rate Review – Phase I Decision on Friday December 1

The PRC has just released an advisory to the media that they will release the Phase I decision tomorrow.  https://www.prc.gov/sites/default/files/pr/Media%20advisory.pdf at 1:00 eastern.

RM2017-3, the PRC’s Statutory Review of the System for Regulating Rates and Classes for Market Dominant Products. A ruling was expected in early autumn, 2017. The timeline has pushed and is now expected to be late November.

Possible scenarios include:

  1. CPI remains in place
  2. Modified CPI cap with adjustment factor that accounts for unmet liabilities and/or volume loss
  3. Eliminate the CPI cap

Decision Close? Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) 10 year Rate Review

RM2017-3, the PRC’s Statutory Review of the System for Regulating Rates and Classes for Market Dominant Products is underway. The Commission is deliberating whether the current ratemaking system meets the objectives of the law.

A ruling was expected in early autumn, 2017. The timeline has pushed and is now expected to be late November. Many anticipate that it will be by the end of the week.

Possible scenarios include:

  1. CPI remains in place
  2. Modified CPI cap with adjustment factor that accounts for unmet liabilities and/or volume loss
  3. Eliminate the CPI cap
  4. If the PRC recommends 2 or 3, they will issue a formal rulemaking and will allow two rounds of comments. It’s possible a final decision will not be announced until spring of 2018. Regardless of the decision, legal action is expected by various stakeholders.

USPS Releases FY 2017 Financial Results

The United States Postal Service has released their FY 2017 financial results.

Key Items:

  • Revenue of $69.6 billion for fiscal year 2017 (October 1, 2016 – September 30, 2017), a decrease of $1.8 billion compared to the prior year.
  • Net loss for the year of $2.7 billion, a decrease in net loss of $2.8 billion compared to 2016. $2.4 billion was the result of changes in interest rates, outside of management’s control, that reduced workers’ compensation expense compared to last year.
  • In 2017, mail volumes declined by approximately 5.0 billion pieces, or 3.6 percent
  • Packages grew by 589 million pieces, or 11.4 percent


PRC Approves USPS Price Changes

Postal Regulatory Commission has the Postal Service’s proposed price changes for its market dominant and competitive products. The new prices will go into effect on January 21, 2018.

The market dominant and competitive rulings are available on the PRC’s website.

See our previous post on the filing for rate information.


USPS moves forward with PostalPro

The USPS has announced that as of November 10, 2017 no new content will be posted to RIBBS, though the site will remain active.

Per the Postal Service, “www.postalpro.usps.com will become the primary source for USPS mailing information.”

They did note that there are certain tools which are hosted on the RIBBS website and will be linked from PostalPro; as a result you may still see RIBBS in limited URLs.


Three Postal Governors Nominated by White House

The White House announced this morning nominations for three individuals to be postal governors. They are Calvin Tucker of Pennsylvania, Mike Duncan of Kentucky and David Williams of Illinois.

https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2017/10/26/president-donald-j-trump-announces-key-additions-his-administration

  • Calvin R. Tucker of Pennsylvania, for the remainder of a term expiring December 8, 2023.
  • Robert M. Duncan of Kentucky, for the remainder of a seven-year term expiring December 8, 2018, and an additional term expiring December 8, 2025.
  • David Williams of Illinois, for the remainder of a seven-year term expiring December 8, 2019.

The lack of Governors is the stated reason the USPS does not have a 2018 Promotion schedule.

NOTE: Confirmation is still required by the Senate. There is no timeline. Previous administrations have nominated governors, but they were blocked by Senator Sanders. No nomination has been confirmed since 2010. The same roadblock is not anticipated this round, but getting on the schedule for confirmation may be an issue.


USPS Files 2018 Rates – Effective January 21, 2018

The Postal Service has filed Market Dominant and Competitive rates. The rates will become effective January 21, 2018.

Market Dominant Summary

  • First-Class Mail – ~1.9% overall increase
  • USPS Marketing Mail – ~1.9% overall increase
  • Periodicals CPI Percent Change
    • Outside County 1.93%
    • Inside County 1.84%
  • Package Services – ~2.0% overall increase
  • Extra Services – ~2.0% overall increase

The following takes a deeper dive into each class. USPS 2018 Price Change

Competitive Rate Summary

  • The proposed prices raise prices approximately 1.9 percent, and most Shipping Services products will average a 3.9 percent price increase.  Shipping Services prices are adjusted strategically and note limited to CPI.

Upcoming USPS Rate Webinar

The USPS has also announced they will host an overview webinar on October 11. Details below.

2018 Price Change Filing Webinars

Wednesday, October 11, 2017 at 3 p.m. (EDT)

Thursday, October 12, 2017 at 2 p.m. (EDT)

Please join Sharon Owens, VP, Pricing and Costing and Steve Monteith, VP, Marketing on Wednesday, October 11 at 3 p.m. (EDT) or Thursday October 12 at 2 p.m. (EDT) for a high-level overview of the 2018 Price Change filing. Attendees will have an opportunity to submit questions to the panel during this webinar. If you would like to submit your questions before the call, you can submit them to IndustryFeedback@usps.gov.

Attendance is limited, so we ask your cooperation in having multiple attendees log-in from one computer in a conference room, if possible.

Please see instructions to participate below:

Wednesday, October 11 at 3 p.m. (EDT)

Registration required. Click on the attendee direct URL below to complete registration.

ATTENDEE INFORMATION Toll-Free Attendee Dial In: 866-381-9870 Conference ID: 92630156

Attendee Direct URL: https://usps.webex.com/usps/onstage/g.php?MTID=e9e9c5c6885c3addb2408bb637d658614

If you cannot join using the direct link above, please use the alternate logins below:
Alternate URL: https://usps.webex.com
Event Number: 996 144 325

Thursday, October 12 at 2 p.m. (EDT)

Registration required. Click on the attendee direct URL below to complete registration.

ATTENDEE INFORMATION Toll-Free Attendee Dial In: 866-381-9870 Conference ID: 92633015

Attendee Direct URL: https://usps.webex.com/usps/onstage/g.php?MTID=e936a2b8c98a66200ab86c355dd740cb5

If you cannot join using the direct link above, please use the alternate logins below:
Alternate URL: https://usps.webex.com
Event Number: 992 069 818

USPS Event- Current status of the impacts from Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria

The USPS provided an update on the current status of the impacts from Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria. The event was let by Lisa Adams, Manager, Operations Integration & Support at the United States Postal Service.

The USPS did announce they will post the recorded session. Here is a link to our notes and screen shots.

Hurricane 2017_10_04 USPS Update


USPS Published January 2018 Pre-Release Notes

The USPS has published pre-release notes for the January price implementation. They available on PostalPro.

The document covers the changes for preparation, but as always, does not include the prices.

Redline postage statements are expected to be available shortly and it is anticipated that the USPS will file the rates with the Postal Regulatory Commission in the next few weeks.

Key Items:

  • ADD BOUND PRINTED MATTER FLATS UP TO 24 OUNCES TO CO-MAIL DSCF OR DDU ONLY
  • ORDER OF PALLET PREPARATION FOR CARRIER ROUTE (CR) PALLETS IN NON-FSS ZONES
  • ADD NSA SUPPORT FOR PRIORITY MAIL INTERNATIONAL (PMI) ECOMPRO REGIONAL RATE BOXES
  • REMOVE PRECANCELED STAMPS FOR PARCEL SELECT LIGHTWEIGHT
  • UPDATES AND CORRECTIONS TO POSTAGE STATEMENTS
  • SIMPLIFY THE POSTAGE STATEMENT FOR FIRST-CLASS MAIL (FCM) RESIDUAL LETTERS
  • EXPAND DOMESTIC RATE ZONE 9 FOR FREELY ASSOCIATED STATES OF MICRONESIA (FAS) – PENDING APPROVAL
  • LIMIT THE CONTENT FOR FIRST-CLASS MAIL INTERNATIONAL (FCMI) TO DOCUMENTS
  • UPDATE ZONE CHART TO REFLECT PRIORITY MAIL APO/DPO/FPO PROCESSED IN CHICAGO
  • CUSTOMS FORM PRINTING AT RSS FOR MILITARY, DPO, POSSESSIONS, TERRITORIES AND FREELY ASSOCIATED STATES
  • SEPARATE STRUCTURE OF FLATS VS TRAYS/TUBS FOR PERIODICAL STATEMENT

 

 


Perfect Storm for a Transportation Capacity Pinch

Increasing demand and decreasing supply is creating a pinch in the transportation supply chain that goes beyond what we have seen in quite some time.

The results, increased costs and, for some areas such as Florida, unprecedented delays. We are seeing delays and anticipate worsening conditions. Fairrington continues to be committed to service and we know it is important for clients to understand the landscape and future projections so they can plan their future initiatives.

Why the capacity pinch? On the increased demand side, it is a good news and bad news situation. A strong economy coupled with major storm events have increased demand. On the supply and cost side, driver shortages and regulations reduce capacity.

Increased Demand

Economic growth during 2017 has been a key factor in the increasing demand.

  • Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in July, and the overall economy grew for the 98th consecutive month, say the nation’s supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM® Report On Business®. – Institute for Supply Management, August 1, 2017
  • US-manufactured goods exports have improved in 2017 “For manufacturers, exports have trended in the right direction in the early months of this year—a welcome development after weaker data in each of the past two years. Using non-seasonally adjusted data, U.S.-manufactured goods exports totaled $353.09 billion year to date in April, up 3.44 percent from $341.33 billion one year ago.” – National Association of Manufacturers, June 2017.

Looking at shipments since 2013, this year has been second-best to 2014, when shipments boomed from a strong manufacturing economy.”      Transport Topics

Two major storm events and perhaps more looming.

  • Harvey drove disruptions well beyond the impacted areas of Texas and Louisiana and while it may not be front page news, recovery efforts continue to pinch an already stressed network. J.B. Hunt, one of the largest transportation logistics companies in North America made the following statement, “Although Houston and the surrounding parts are the most immediate area impacted, and the capacity disruption stretches nationwide.”
  • The timing of Irma on the heels of Harvey provided additional pressure. It has been reported that FEMA is paying $6,000 per load for relief efforts.

The chart below demonstrates the imbalance of 5 loads for every truck.

Decreased Supply

  • Driver shortages are increasing as the workforce continues to age. The time away from home and other factors can paint it as an unattractive career choice when given alternatives such as construction work. Commercial Carrier Journal reported that driver turnover is at 90% as drivers move to new opportunities or move from carrier to carrier. Even the move from carrier to carrier results in increased uncertainty and unplanned disruptions.

Driver turnover jumped to 90%     “Indicators: Driver turnover rate swelled in second quarter”, Commercial Carrier Journal, 9/18/2017

  • Regulations have increased. The Electronic Logging Device (ELD) mandate became effective December 2017. Safety is vital, but there is a cost to comply and it is nontrivial. Anecdotal reports are that 40-80% of tractors are compliant. Compliance means drivers to strictly observe hours of service regulations, decreasing the hours per driver that were available in the past. The annual DOT Road Check Event validates our estimate of a minimum of 2% to 3% truck capacity coming out of the market when full enforcement of the yielding mandate becomes reality.

Additional Cost Factors

  • To counter driver shortages, carrier have implemented pay Increases. CRST Expedited, part of CRST International (No. 13 on the CCJ Top 250), announced it is boosting pay for new contract student drivers by 15 percent.

“Two Major Fleets Boost Driver Pay” Commercial Carrier Journal 9/1/2017

  • Rail options have often been seen as a cost effective option, but they are also facing challenges. The CSX Transportation service issues have led to major trade groups to call for government investigation into rail disruptions.

Projections

Rate increases are expected across all modes of transportation. Here are some rough projections based on recent announcements.

  • Truckload 4-10+%
  • LTL 5-6%
  • Intermodal 3-5%
    • Small parcel 4-6% solutions
    • Revised DIM thresholds
    • Peak season surcharges
    • Increased minimum charge floors
    • More frequent fuel surcharge calculations

Fairrington is committed to service and our transportation operations department is working diligently to mitigate the impact to as few destinations as possible. As always, we reach out to clients that are directly impacted. If have questions, contact your Client Services Representative at 630.783.9200.


CPI Released by Bureau of Labor – 2018 USPS Rates

The Bureau of Labor Statistics released the CPI data for August. Using the Postal Regulatory Commission’s formula for calculating the Postal Service’s pricing authority on an annual basis (i.e., the CPI cap on prices), the applicable cap is 1.987%. The Postal Service has stated it plans to file for a January 2018 rate increase, based on the August CPI and the resulting cap. The cap is applied at the class level such as Periodical and USPS Marketing Mail. Traditionally the price changes for some categories and rate cells will be greater or lesser than the cap. For example, they can apply the increase at a cell level to try to bring alignment to products that are underwater or to optimize the increase from a revenue perspective.

The USPS also has unused rate authority from previous pricing actions, and these could be included in the final figure.

In August, USPS VP of Pricing and Costing, Sharon Owens, shared pricing signals at the August 2017 MTAC Open Session. She stated that nonprofit letters may see a higher increase but that no significant classification changes are planned, and most discount relationships would continue. The rate filing approach was approved by James Bilbray prior to his departure from the Board of Governors. No USPS promotions were approved as part of that process. The USPS anticipates that both market dominant and competitive rate changes will be effective at the same time.


Recap of USPS Storm Update Webinar

The United States Postal Service held a webinar on Wednesday, September 13 to provide information and answer questions regarding hurricane Harvey and Irma’s impact on Retail Operations, Delivery Operations and Drop Shipments.

The session provided a recap of the information available at http://about.usps.com/news/service-alerts/resident-weather-updates.htm,

They noted there was currently no access to the Florida Keys.

They also provided a look at the current transportation situation.

Information on change of address, remittance mail and mail transportation equipment.

 


USPS Industry Webinar: Hurricane Irma Impact and Recovery

USPS Industry Webinar on Hurricane Irma Impact and Recovery

The United States Postal Service is holding a webinar on Wednesday, September 13, 2017 at 3:00 PM EDT, to provide information and answer questions regarding hurricane Irma’s impact on Retail Operations, Delivery Operations and Drop Shipments.

Please join us using the webinar information below on the day of the event.  Thank you.

ATTENDEE INFORMATION Toll-Free Attendee Dial In: 866-381-9870 Event Plus Passcode: 85254818

Attendee Direct URL: https://usps.webex.com/usps/onstage/g.php?MTID=ed87b9639eaec8115236d385ab059d06d

If you cannot join using the direct link above, please use the alternate logins below:
Alternate URL: https://usps.webex.com
Event Number: 391 152 093

Irma impacts much of Florida, extending north to Georgia and the Carolinas

On Sunday, the Postal Service sent the following announcement:

All Post Offices/Stations/Branches/Finance Units within the 3-Digit ZIP Code ranges of 304, 310, 312, 318, and 319 suspended Retail Operations, Delivery Operations, Business Mail Entry (BME) Operations and Drop Shipments at close of business, Saturday, September 9, 2017.  They will resume operations on Tuesday, September 12, 2017: 

  • 304, 310, 312, 318, 319

Macon GA P&DF will suspend ALL operations effective Monday, September 11, 2017 @ 7:00AM.  All operations will be suspended until Monday, September 11, 2017 @ 11:00PM:

  • Macon GA P&DC, 451 College St, Macon GA 31213-9997

All Post Offices/Stations/Branches/Finance Units within the following 3-Digit ZIP Code ranges have suspended Retail Operations, Delivery Operations, BME Operations and Drop Shipments until Tuesday, September 12, 2017: 

  • 313, 314, 315, 316, 317, 320, 322, 323, 324, 325, 326, 344, and 398  

The following plants suspended ALL operations on Sunday, September 10, 2017 @ 7:00AM.  All operations will be suspended until Monday, September 11, 2017 @ 11:00PM:

  • Pensacola P&DC, 1400 W Jordan St, Pensacola FL 32501-9998
  • Jacksonville P&DC, 1100 Kings Rd, Jacksonville FL 32203-9996
  • Jacksonville NDC, 7415 Commonwealth Ave, Jacksonville FL 32099-0002
  • Tallahassee P&DC, 2800 S Adams St, Tallahassee FL 32301-9996

Gainesville P&DF will suspend ALL operations effective Saturday, September 9, 2017 @ 8:30PM.  All operations will be suspended until Monday, September 11, 2017 @ 8:00PM: 

Gainesville, 4600 SW 34th St, Gainesville FL 32608-9998

To view the most current USPS information, visit https://about.usps.com/news/service-alerts/.

We anticipate that the ZIP Codes and dates may change. At this time, we will hold the mail based on USPS communications and once areas begin to open, will make every effort to minimize delays wherever possible.

As always, we reach out to clients that are directly impacted. If have questions, contact your Client Services Representative at 630.783.9200.

Key Pieces of Information

  • National Transportation Impact: Relief efforts for both Harvey and preparations for Irma have strained the transportation industry by greatly reducing truck availability. This capacity constraint has the potential to delay service across the national network. Any delays caused by hurricane Harvey will be reported immediately by our client service department to those impacted. Our transportation operations department is working diligently to mitigate the impact to as few destinations as possible, for as short a time as possible.
  • USPS Processing and Delivery Facilities: The list will continue to change. To view the most current USPS information, visit https://about.usps.com/news/service-alerts/.
  • ZIP Code Impacted: During Katrina, the USPS requested mailers suppress specific ZIP Codes from the mail. At this time, they have not issued any zips for suppression. Should a client choose to suppress, a list of ZIP Codes for areas affected by disasters are available for download under Mail Service Disruption Report available at https://about.usps.com/news/service-alerts/business-weather-updates.htm.

Southern Area, South Florida District, and Suncoast District: USPS Marketing Mail volume Embargoed

The USPS has just issued the following announcement:

The Southern Area, South Florida District, and Suncoast District are announcing effective immediately USPS Marketing Mail volume is embargoed into the following 3 digit ZIP Code ranges: 

South Florida – 330, 331, 332, 333, 334, 340, and 349;

Suncoast – 321, 327, 328, 329, 335, 336, 337, 338, 339, 341, 342, 346, and 347. 

The embargo will last at least until September 13, 2017

We anticipate that the ZIP Codes and dates may change.

 

Key Pieces of Information

  • National Transportation Impact: Relief efforts for both Harvey and preparations for Irma have strained the transportation industry by greatly reducing truck availability. This capacity constraint has the potential to delay service across the national network. Any delays caused by hurricane Harvey will be reported immediately by our client service department to those impacted. Our transportation operations department is working diligently to mitigate the impact to as few destinations as possible, for as short a time as possible.
  • USPS Processing and Delivery Facilities: The list will continue to change. To view the most current USPS information, visit https://about.usps.com/news/service-alerts/.
  • ZIP Code Impacted: During Katrina, the USPS requested mailers suppress specific ZIP Codes from the mail. At this time, they have not issued any zips for suppression. Should a client choose to suppress, a list of ZIP Codes for areas affected by disasters are available for download under Mail Service Disruption Report available at https://about.usps.com/news/service-alerts/business-weather-updates.htm.

USPS Suspending Service in South Florida as Irma Approaches

The USPS has announced they are suspending service for all operations in the South Florida. There will be no Retail Services, no Delivery Operations and no Drop Shipments in these offices.

For a full list of disruptions and to view the most current USPS information, visit https://about.usps.com/news/service-alerts/.

We will make every effort to minimize delays wherever possible. If needed, we are hold mail for affected areas at the origin or our consolidation facilities in order to protect and safeguard your product.

As always, we reach out to clients that are directly impacted. If have questions, contact your Client Services Representative at 630.783.9200.

Other Key Pieces of Information

  • National Transportation Impact: Relief efforts for both Harvey and preparations for Irma have strained the transportation industry by greatly reducing truck availability. This capacity constraint has the potential to delay service across the national network. Any delays caused by hurricane Harvey will be reported immediately by our client service department to those impacted. Our transportation operations department is working diligently to mitigate the impact to as few destinations as possible, for as short a time as possible.
  • USPS Processing and Delivery Facilities: The list will continue to change. To view the most current USPS information, visit https://about.usps.com/news/service-alerts/.
  • ZIP Code Impacted: During Katrina, the USPS requested mailers suppress specific ZIP Codes from the mail. At this time, they have not issued any zips for suppression. Should a client choose to suppress, a list of ZIP Codes for areas affected by disasters are available for download under Mail Service Disruption Report available at https://about.usps.com/news/service-alerts/business-weather-updates.htm.

 


Harvey – North Houston P&DC

The USPS has announced that North Houston P&DC, located at 4600 Aldine Bender Rd, North Houston, TX 77315-9997 has resumed accepting drops shipments to include Marketing Mail effective today, September 02, 2017.

For mail that we were not instructed hold, return or destroy, we have begun to deliver based on USPS appointment availability and transportation capacity.

It is anticipated that delivery to recipients will be difficult to project as flooding in some areas continue. The USPS has also announced alternate mail pickup locations.

To view the most current USPS information, visit https://about.usps.com/news/service-alerts/. We will continue to follow USPS communications to hold delivery to impacted and following redirections as directed by the USPS.

As always, we reach out to clients that are directly impacted. If have questions, contact your Client Services Representative at 630.783.9200.


Mail Acceptance at BMEUs impacted by Hurricane Harvey and Refund Requests

The USPS has issued the following Industry Alert regarding mail acceptance and postage refund requests

Important Information for Mail Acceptance Related to Hurricane Harvey

Mail Acceptance at BMEUs impacted by Hurricane Harvey

Mailers are being informed of BME availability through the Industry alerts.

Mail Acceptance:  As BMEs come on line, they will be placed in contingency mode in the event a file or postage statement was or cannot be submitted at the time of mailing.

The following instructions are provided for continuation of operations in the event a mailer is not able to submit an electronic postage statement to the USPS due to a USPS outage or mailer issue.

  1. BMEUs and DMUs will maintain the USPS Record of Mailings Log for each mailing presented.  This log is used to reconcile the mailings to the PostalOne! dashboard once issue is resolved.
  2. Postal Wizard, Mail.dat® and Mail.XML™ mailers who normally submit their postage statements electronically must be able to provide, either verbally or in written format, the following information:
  • Permit Holder
  • Total Pieces (An approximate total piece count can be provided if the mailer does not know the exact number of total pieces)
  • Total Postage (An approximate total postage amount can be provided if the mailer does not know the exact total postage for the mailing.)
  • Mailer Job ID
  • eInduction mailing: Yes or No  (If yes, mailers are not required to create hardcopy PS Form 8125(s) or provide any additional documentation).
  1. Mailers who normally submit hardcopy postage statements will continue to submit the hardcopy postage statement
  • Mailers who normally submit hardcopy postage statements will be required to continue providing presort documentation with their mailings.
  1. Postal Wizard, Mail.dat® and Mail.XML™ mailers who normally submit their postage statements electronically will not be required to provide presort documentation for any mailing submitted during a USPS or mailer issue/outage.

If mailers have any issues with mail acceptance during this incident, please contact the PostalOne! Help Desk at 800.522.9085.

eInduction: Facilities accepting PVDS through the eInduction program will also remain on contingency for the period of time it takes to resume normal operations.

For eInduction mailings presented at the dock, PS Form 8125s are not required to be submitted.  Mailers and Dock employees will follow the eInduction Contingency Plan. The instruction below are to be followed for eInduction containers:

  1. Accept and scan all placarded containers

NOTE:  If the load is a mixed load (containing eInduction containers and regular PVDS Mail) reconcile any containers to 8125 forms.

  1. Collect 1 placard from each unloaded container for those not reconciled to 8125 forms
  2. In the SV-IMD update all unresolved containers with a 99M barcode to Accept status
  3. Release reconciled containers, and containers from which a placard was removed, into operations
  4. Retain container placards and, for mixed loads, PS Form 8125s for reconciliation.

If eInduction mailings are held at the dock for any reason, mailers should contact the FAST Help Desk at 877.569.6614.

Non-eInduction mailings will continue to submit PS Form 8125.

Refund Requests for paid mail volume not tendered to the Postal Service due to Hurricane Harvey

Some mail owners and mail service providers are deciding not to deliver mail volume due to the impacts of Hurricane Harvey. Mail owners or mail service providers may request a refund for the postage amounts associated to mail pieces paid for, but not tendered to the Postal Service for delivery, by adhering to the following process:

Written notification, requesting a refund, must be provided to your local BME Manager.  The following information must be included:

  1. Date of mailing
  2. Post Office where original postage was collected
  3. Permit/USPS number used for original postage collection
  4. Job ID or Postage Statement ID of impacted mailing
  5. Total pieces not mailed
  6. Total refund amount and:

‒      A summary of containers (container ID or container #), total pieces by rate category (5-digit, 3-digit, etc.) and calculations used to determine requested refund amount.

  1. A signed statement indicating:

‒      The mailpieces has been or will be destroyed,

‒      Destruction Document with signatures that includes the name of the company and individual responsible for destroying the mailpieces along with the date of destruction

‒      Reimbursement of postage through any insurance claims will not be pursued.


Recap of USPS Harvey Update

The USPS Harvey update was led by Robert Citron Leads, USPS Vice President of Network Operations.

Focus is first on safety of employees.

It is a changing situation and the audience was advised to continue to watch the alerts. To date, the USPS has issued 35 Industry Alerts.

Other key highlights:

  • Mail Delivery: Some started yesterday, still many areas are not accessible
  • Employees: About 75% of employees came back to the larger area
  • North Houston: Beginning to ramp backup – still a primary area of focus and many employees not able to return
  • Fuel shortages: Impacting entire area, including the USPS
  • Corpus Christi P&DC: Normal processing
  • Beaumont P&DC: Currently down
  • Remittances Mail: USPS has been in contact with all remittance mailers, operations are being moved to Dallas
  • Change of Address: Under contingency plan, expect it to climb over the next weeks They have modified the website for COA so no credit card is required and USPS personnel will be able to change on behalf of residents
  • Mail Transport Equipment: Instructions provided for damaged sacks, tray sleeves and other Mail Transport Equipment
  • Suppress ZIP Codes: No ZIP Codes are currently required to be suppressed
  • Mail Pickup: Alternate pickup locations are being identified and posted

Below are slides from the event. The USPS will post the session and slides on PostalPro, under Industry Outreach.

We will make every effort to minimize delays wherever possible. Please note that at this time, we are holding mail for those affected areas at the origin or our consolidation facilities in order to protect and safeguard your product.

If you have any questions, please contact your client service representative or sales manager.