[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 74 (Wednesday, April 17, 2013)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 22820-22827]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-09037]


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POSTAL REGULATORY COMMISSION

39 CFR Part 3001

[Order No. 1677; Docket No. RM2013-1]


Revisions to Rules of Practice

AGENCY: Postal Regulatory Commission.

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking.

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SUMMARY: This notice addresses proposed revisions to the Commission's 
rules of practice. The revisions (as clarified by an errata issued 
March 19, 2013) are intended to update existing rules due to recent 
statutory and regulatory changes; make technical editorial changes; and 
foster clarity and simplicity to reduce the potential for confusion. 
The notice also takes related administrative steps, including an 
invitation for comments on the proposed revisions. Comments will assist 
the Commission in developing a final rule.

DATES: Comment date: Comments due on or before May 17, 2013.

ADDRESSES: Submit comments electronically by accessing the ``Filing 
Online'' link in the banner at the top of the Commission's Web site 
(http://www.prc.gov) or by directly accessing the Commission's Filing 
Online system at https://www.prc.gov/prc-pages/filing-online/login.aspx. Commenters who

[[Page 22821]]

cannot submit their views electronically should contact the person 
identified in the For Further Information Contact section as the source 
for case-related information for advice on alternatives to electronic 
filing.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Case related information: Stephen L. 
Sharman, General Counsel, 202-789-6820; Electronic filing assistance: 
DocketAdmins@prc.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Table of Contents

I. Background
II. Proposed Changes to the Commission's Rules of Practice
III. Invitation To Comment
IV. Ordering Paragraphs

I. Background

    The Postal Regulatory Commission (Commission) establishes a 
rulemaking docket pursuant to its responsibilities under the Postal 
Accountability and Enhancement Act (PAEA), Public Law 109-435, 120 
Stat. 3198 (2006), to consider amendments to the Commission's rules of 
practice and procedure, 39 CFR part 3001. These amendments propose 
minor changes that remove obsolete references, adopt new terminology, 
and make technical edits. As explained below, the passage of the PAEA 
required significant changes to the Commission's rules to ensure that 
the rules encompassed the major changes promulgated by the PAEA.\1\ The 
changes proposed by this order further revise the Commission's rules of 
practice by removing obsolete references brought on by prior rule 
changes.\2\
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    \1\ See, e.g., Docket No. RM2007-1, Order Establishing 
Ratemaking Regulations for Market Dominant and Competitive Products, 
October 29, 2009 (Order No. 43).
    \2\ See id., Docket No. RM2009-4, Order Eliminating Obsolete 
Rules of Practice, May 11, 2009 (Order No. 214).
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    The PAEA transformed the Postal Rate Commission into the Postal 
Regulatory Commission; repealed several key sections of title 39 of the 
United States Code; and added a number of new statutory provisions to 
title 39. The result was a major change in the Commission's regulatory 
responsibilities and authorities. In response to the changes made by 
the PAEA, the Commission, on October 29, 2007, established a new system 
for regulating rates that was markedly different from the prior 
regulatory regime. See Order No. 43.
    Due to the changes made by the PAEA and subsequent rulemakings, 
further amendments are required to remove obsolete references, include 
new terminology, and remove potential confusion from the Commission's 
rules of practice.

II. Proposed Changes to the Commission's Rules of Practice

    The changes proposed in this order fall under three broad 
categories: (1) Removal of statutory or regulatory references that have 
been repealed, amended, or removed since the adoption of the PAEA; (2) 
adoption of changes in terminology consistent with the PAEA and current 
Commission practice; and (3) minor clarifications and corrections. The 
following is a section-by-section analysis of the proposed amendments. 
Each paragraph containing a proposed change is reproduced below the 
Secretary's signature on this notice.
    Rule 3001.5(a) is amended by defining ``Act'' to encompass title 39 
in its entirety.
    Rule 3001.5(h) is amended by clarifying that ``participant'' means 
any party to the proceeding, including formal intervenors, and by 
replacing ``officer of the Commission who is designated to represent 
the interests of the general public'' with ``Public Representative.''
    Rule 3001.5(j) is amended by deleting obsolete references to 39 
U.S.C. 3624 and 3662 and by adding ``or any other proceeding noticed by 
the Commission under Sec. Sec.  3001.17 and 3001.18(a) of this 
section'' to the definition.
    Rule 3001.5(m) is amended by replacing a reference to 39 U.S.C. 
404(b) with a reference to 39 U.S.C. 404(d)(5).
    Rule 3001.5(o) is amended by replacing ``a proceeding conducted 
pursuant to subpart H of this part'' with ``a proceeding conducted 
pursuant to part 3025 of this chapter''.
    Rule 3001.5(p) is amended by deleting an obsolete definition of 
Domestic Mail Classification Schedule and reserving the paragraph for 
future use.
    Rule 3001.5(q) is amended by replacing ``Office of the Consumer 
Advocate'' with ``Public Representative''; ``OCA'' with ``PR''; and 
``means the'' with ``means an.''
    Rule 3001.7(a)(1)(iii) is amended by replacing ``Office of Rates, 
Analysis and Planning'' with ``Office of Accountability and 
Compliance.''
    Rule 3001.7(a)(2)(ii) is amended by replacing ``Subpart C'' with 
``Subpart B.''
    Rule 3001.7(b) is amended to encompass proceedings under section 
3661 of the Act; any proceeding noticed and set for hearing by the 
Commission pursuant to Sec. Sec.  3001.17 and 3001.18(a); or any 
proceeding conducted pursuant to part 3025.
    Rule 3001.9(a) is amended by replacing ``Office of the Secretary'' 
with ``Office of Secretary and Administration'' and by revising the 
Postal Regulatory Commission's address to read ``901 New York Avenue 
NW., Suite 200, Washington, DC 20268-0001.''
    Rule 3001.9(c)(2) is amended by adding ``federal'' before the word 
``holiday.''
    Rule 3001.9(e) is amended to replace ``Sec.  11'' with ``Sec.  
3001.11(e).''
    Rule 3001.10(c) is amended by deleting the ``or'' that follows 
``Word,.''
    Rule 3001.15 is amended by replacing ``legal holiday for the 
Commission'' with ``federal holiday,''; ``or holiday'' with ``nor a 
federal holiday,; ``less'' with ``fewer,'' and ``legal holidays of the 
Commission'' with ``federal holidays.'' It is also amended by deleting 
the sentence that reads ``A part-day holiday shall be considered as 
other days and not as a holiday.''
    Rule 3001.18(b) is amended by replacing ``and the Commission shall 
then issue a recommended decision, advisory opinion, or public report, 
as appropriate, in accordance with the provisions of Sec. Sec.  3001.34 
to 3001.39'' with ``The Commission shall then issue an advisory opinion 
or final decision, as appropriate.'' and by inserting a period at the 
end of the previous sentence.
    Rule 3001.18(c) is amended by replacing ``and a recommended 
decision, advisory opinion, or public report, as appropriate, shall 
then be issued pursuant to the provisions of Sec. Sec.  3001.34 to 
3001.39'' with ``The Commission shall then issue an advisory opinion or 
final decision, as appropriate.'' and by inserting a period at the end 
of the previous sentence.
    Rule 3001.19 is amended by deleting the word ``involved'' so that 
the applicable sentence now reads ``Such notice shall be published in 
the Federal Register and served on all participants in the 
proceeding.''
    Rule 3001.20a(c) is amended by replacing ``Limited participants may 
file briefs'' with ``Limited participators may file briefs'' and by 
deleting the reference to 39 U.S.C. 3622(b)(4).
    Rule 3001.20b is amended by replacing ``Sec. Sec.  3001.19a and 
3001.20'' with ``Sec. Sec.  3001.20 and 3001.20a'' and ``Sec.  
3001.17'' with ``Sec.  3001.17(a).''
    Rule 3001.21(a) is amended by replacing ``initial decision'' with 
``intermediate decision.''
    Rule 3001.23(a)(7) is amended by replacing ``initial or recommended 
decision'' with ``intermediate decision.''
    Rule 3001.23(a)(9) is amended by replacing ``initial or recommended 
decision'' with ``intermediate decision.''

[[Page 22822]]

    Rule 3001.24(a) is amended by deleting ``recommended decision or'' 
and obsolete references to sections 3622 and 3623 of the Act.
    Rule 3001.24(d)(6) is amended by deleting obsolete references to 
sections 3622 and 3623 of the Act.
    Rule 3001.25(a) is amended by deleting obsolete references to 
sections 3622, 3623, and 3662 of the Act.
    Rule 3001.27(b) is amended by replacing ``through .12'' with 
``through 3001.12''.
    Rule 3001.30(d) is amended by deleting obsolete references to 
sections 3622 and 3623 of the Act and by adding ``and set for hearing 
pursuant to Sec.  3001.18(a)'' to the end of the first sentence.
    Rule 3001.30(e)(2) is amended by replacing the reference to 
testimony ``OCA-T1-17'' with ``PR-T1-17''.
    Rule 3001.30(h) is amended by replacing references to ``his'' with 
``his/her''.
    Rule 3001.31(k)(3)(i)(i) is amended by replacing ``Administrative 
Office'' with ``Office of Secretary and Administration''.
    Rule 3001.31a(c) is amended by deleting ``and shall be subject to 
the provisions of Sec.  3001.42 of this chapter''.
    Rule 3001.32(f) is amended by replacing ``allowed or requested'' 
with ``certified pursuant to paragraph (b)(1) of this section''; by 
replacing both references to ``initial decision'' with ``intermediate 
decision''; and by replacing ``at the conclusion of the proceeding'' 
with ``in the participants' briefs in accordance with Sec.  3001.34''.
    Rule 3001.34(a) is amended by replacing ``issuance of recommended 
decision or advisory opinion to the Postal Service within the 
contemplation of sections 3641(a) and 3661 of the Act'' with ``issuance 
of the decision or advisory opinion''.
    Rule 3001.34(b)(3) is amended by replacing ``the subject matter of 
the complaint, or recommended decision, advisory opinion, or public 
report to be issued'' with ``and the advisory opinion or decision to be 
issued''.
    Rule 3001.36 is amended by deleting references to ``other 
designated officers'' (including in the rule title) and by replacing 
references to ``initial or recommended decisions'' with ``intermediate 
decisions''. It is also amended by replacing ``shall determine the time 
and place for oral argument, the issue or issues on which oral 
argument'' with ``shall determine the time and place for oral argument, 
and may specify the issue or issues on which oral argument''.
    Rule 3001.39(c) is amended by deleting ``(initial, recommended or 
tentative)'' and obsolete references to section 3622 and 3623 of the 
Act, and replacing ``recommended decision, advisory opinion or public 
report'' with ``intermediate decision''.
    Rule 3001.40 is amended by deleting the authority citation that 
follows the rule.
    Rule 3001.41 is amended by deleting the authority citation that 
follows the rule.
    Rule 3001.43(a) is amended by deleting ``Access to documents being 
considered at Commission meetings shall be obtained in the manner set 
forth in Sec.  3001.42''.
    Rule 3001.43(c)(10) is amended by deleting ``as provided by section 
3624(a) of title 39'' and by replacing ``a civil action or proceeding'' 
with ``a civil action or appellate proceeding''.
    Rule 3001.43(e)(4)(i) is amended by replacing ``office of the 
Secretary of the Commission'' with ``reception area of the Postal 
Regulatory Commission located''.
    Rule 3001.43(g)(1)(iii) is amended by replacing both references to 
the ``office of the Secretary'' with the ``Office of Secretary and 
Administration''.
    Rule 3001.43(g)(2)(iii) is amended by replacing both references to 
the ``office of the Secretary'' with the ``Office of Secretary and 
Administration''.
    Rule 3001.72 is amended by replacing ``a recommended decision'' 
with ``an advisory opinion''.
    Rule 3001.75 is amended to read ``The provisions of Sec.  3001.12 
govern the Postal Service's service requirements for proceedings 
conducted under this subpart. Service must be made on all participants 
as defined in Sec.  3001.5(h)''.

III. Invitation To Comment

    Interested persons are invited to comment on the proposed changes 
to part 3001. Comments are due within 30 days of the date of 
publication of this notice in the Federal Register.
    Pursuant to 39 U.S.C. 505, James Waclawski is designated as the 
Public Representative in this proceeding to represent the interests of 
the general public.

IV. Ordering Paragraphs

    It is ordered:
    1. Docket No. RM2013-1 is established for the purpose of receiving 
comments on the proposed changes to 39 CFR part 3001, as discussed in 
this order.
    2. Interested parties may submit comments no later than 30 days 
from the date of publication of this notice in the Federal Register.
    3. Pursuant to 39 U.S.C. 505, James Waclawski is appointed to serve 
as Public Representative in this proceeding.
    4. The Secretary shall arrange for publication of this order in the 
Federal Register.

List of Subjects in 39 CFR Part 3001

    Administrative practice and procedure, Freedom of information, 
Postal Service, Sunshine Act.

    By the Commission.
Shoshana M. Grove,
Secretary.

    For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Commission proposes 
to amend chapter III of title 39 of the Code of Federal Regulations as 
follows:

PART 3001--RULES OF PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE

0
1. The authority citation for part 3001 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 39 U.S.C. 404(d); 503; 504; 3661.

Subpart A--Rules of General Applicability

0
2. Revise 3001.5 to read as follows:


Sec.  3001.5  Definitions.

    (a) Act means title 39, United States Code, as amended.
    (b) Postal Service means the U.S. Postal Service established by the 
Act.
    (c) Commission or Commissioner means, respectively, the Postal 
Regulatory Commission established by the Act or a member thereof.
    (d) Secretary means the Secretary or the Acting Secretary of the 
Commission.
    (e) Presiding officer means the Chairman of the Commission in 
proceedings conducted by the Commission en banc or the Commissioner or 
employee of the Commission designated to preside at hearings or 
conferences.
    (f) Person means an individual, a partnership, corporation, trust, 
unincorporated association, public or private organization, or 
governmental agency.
    (g) Party means the Postal Service, a complainant, an appellant, or 
a person who has intervened in a proceeding before the Commission.
    (h) Participant means any party to the proceeding, including formal 
intervenors as described in Sec.  3001.20, and the Public 
Representative and, for the purposes of Sec.  3001.11(e), Sec.  
3001.12, Sec.  3001.21, Sec.  3001.23, Sec.  3001.24, Sec.  3001.29, 
Sec.  3001.30, Sec.  3001.31, and Sec.  3001.32 only, it also means 
persons who are limited participators.
    (i) Complainant means a person or interested party who as permitted 
by

[[Page 22823]]

section 3662 of the Act files a complaint with the Commission in the 
form and manner hereinafter prescribed.
    (j) Hearing means a hearing under sections 556 and 557 of title 5, 
U.S.C. (80 Stat. 386), as provided by section 3661 of the Act or in any 
other proceeding noticed by the Commission under Sec.  3001.17 and 
Sec.  3001.18(a).
    (k) Record means the transcript of testimony and exhibits, together 
with all papers and requests filed in the proceeding, which constitutes 
the record for decision.
    (l) Effective date of an order or notice issued by the Commission 
or an officer of the Commission means the date of issuance unless 
otherwise specifically provided.
    (m) Petitioner means a person who is permitted by 39 U.S.C. 
404(d)(5) to appeal to the Commission a determination of the Postal 
Service to close or consolidate a post office.
    (n) Commission meeting means the deliberations of at least three 
Commissioners where such deliberations determine or result in the joint 
conduct or disposition of official Commission business, but does not 
include deliberations required or permitted by Sec.  3001.43(d) or 
Sec.  3001.43(e).
    (o) Ex parte communication means an oral or written communication 
not on the public record with respect to which reasonable prior notice 
to all participants and limited participators is not given, but it 
shall not include requests for status reports on any matter or 
proceeding covered by subchapter II of chapter 5 of title 5, U.S.C. or 
a proceeding conducted pursuant to part 3025 of this chapter.
    (p) Reserved.
    (q) Public Representative or PR means an officer of the Commission 
designated to represent the interests of the general public in a 
Commission proceeding.
    (r) Negotiated service agreement means a written contract, to be in 
effect for a defined period of time, between the Postal Service and a 
mailer, that provides for customer-specific rates or fees and/or terms 
of service in accordance with the terms or conditions of the contract. 
A rate associated with a negotiated service agreement is not rate of 
general applicability.
    (s) Postal service refers to the delivery of letters, printed 
matter, or mailable packages, including acceptance, collection, 
sorting, transportation, or other functions ancillary thereto.
    (t) Product means a postal service with a distinct cost or market 
characteristic for which a rate or rates are, or may reasonably be, 
applied.
0
3. In Sec.  3001.7, revise paragraphs (a) and (b) to read as follows


Sec.  3001.7  Ex parte communications.

    (a) Definitions--(1) Decision-making personnel. Subject to the 
exception stated in paragraph (a)(2)(ii) of this section, the following 
categories of persons are designated ``decision-making Commission 
personnel'':
    (i) The Commissioners and their personal office staffs;
    (ii) The General Counsel and his/her staff;
    (iii) The Director of the Office of Accountability and Compliance 
and his/her staff.
    (iv) Any other employee who may reasonably be expected to be 
involved in the decisional process.
    (2) Non-decision-making Commission personnel. The following 
categories of person are designated ``non-decision-making personnel'':
    (i) All Commission personnel other than decision-making Commission 
personnel;
    (ii) Decision-making Commission personnel not participating in the 
decisional process owing to the prohibitions of Sec.  3001.8 or part 
3000, subpart B of this chapter.
    (b) Prohibition. In any agency proceeding conducted under section 
3661 of the Act; noticed and set for hearing by the Commission pursuant 
to Sec.  3001.17 and Sec.  3001.18(a); or any proceeding conducted 
pursuant to part 3025 of this chapter to the extent required for the 
disposition of ex parte matters as authorized by law:
* * * * *
0
4. Revise Sec.  3001.9 to read as follows:


Sec.  3001.9  Filing of documents.

    (a) Filing with the Commission. The filing of each written document 
required or authorized by these rules or any applicable statute, rule, 
regulation, or order of the Commission, or by direction of the 
presiding officer, shall be made using the Internet (Filing Online) 
pursuant to Sec.  3001.10(a) at the Commission's Web site (http://www.prc.gov), unless a waiver is obtained. If a waiver is obtained, a 
hard copy document may be filed either by mailing or by hand delivery 
to the Office of Secretary and Administration, Postal Regulatory 
Commission, 901 New York Avenue NW., Suite 200, Washington, DC 20268-
0001 during regular business hours on a date no later than that 
specified for such filing. The requirements of this section do not 
apply to participants other than the Postal Service in proceedings 
conducted pursuant to part 3025 of this chapter.
    (b) Account holder. In order for a document to be accepted using 
Filing Online, it must be submitted to the Commission by a principal 
account holder or an agent account holder (Filing Online account 
holder). The authority of the principal account holder to represent the 
participant on whose behalf the document is filed must be valid and 
current, in conformance with Sec.  3001.6. The authority of an agent 
account holder to submit documents for a principal account holder must 
be valid and current. A principal account holder must promptly inform 
the Secretary of any change in his/her authority to represent 
participants in a proceeding or any change in the authority delegated 
to an agent account holder to submit documents on his/her behalf.
    (c) Acceptance for filing. Only such documents as conform to the 
requirements of this part and any other applicable rule or order 
authorized by the Commission shall be accepted for filing. In order for 
a document to be accepted using Filing Online, it must be submitted to 
the Commission by a Filing Online account holder.
    (1) Subject to Sec.  3001.9(d):
    (i) A document submitted through Filing Online is filed on the date 
indicated on the receipt issued by the Secretary. It is accepted when 
the Secretary, after review, has posted it on the Daily Listing page of 
the Commission's Web site.
    (ii) A hardcopy document is filed on the date stamped by the 
Secretary. It is accepted when the Secretary, after review, has posted 
it on the Daily Listing page of the Commission's Web site.
    (2) Any document received after the close of regular business hours 
or on a Saturday, Sunday, or federal holiday, shall be deemed to be 
filed on the next regular business day.
    (d) Rejected filings. Any filing that does not comply with any 
applicable rule or order authorized by the Commission may be rejected. 
Any filing that is rejected is deemed not to have been filed with the 
Commission. If a filing is rejected, the Secretary or the Secretary's 
designee will notify the person submitting the filing, indicating the 
reason(s) for rejection. Acceptance for filing shall not waive any 
failure to comply with this part, and such failure may be cause for 
subsequently striking all or any part of any document.
    (e) Account holder exemptions. Notices of intervention and comments 
solicited by the Commission may be filed under temporary Filing Online 
accounts. Temporary Filing Online accounts may be obtained without 
meeting all of the requirements of

[[Page 22824]]

paragraphs (b) and (c) of this section, and the subscription 
requirements of Sec.  3001.11(e). Other categories of documents may be 
filed under temporary Filing Online accounts under extraordinary 
circumstances, for good cause shown.
0
5. In Sec.  3001.10, revise paragraph (c) to read as follows:


Sec.  3001.10  Form and number of copies of documents.

* * * * *
    (c) Computer media. A participant that has obtained a waiver of the 
online filing requirement of Sec.  3001.9(a) may submit a document on 
standard PC media, simultaneously with the filing of one printed 
original and two hard copies, provided that the stored document is a 
file generated in either Acrobat (pdf), Word, WordPerfect, or Rich Text 
Format (rtf).
* * * * *
0
6. Revise Sec.  3001.15 to read as follows:


Sec.  3001.15  Computation of time.

    Except as otherwise provided by law, in computing any period of 
time prescribed or allowed by this part, or by any notice, order, rule 
or regulation of the Commission or a presiding officer, the day of the 
act, event, or default after which the designated period of time begins 
to run is not to be included. The last day of the period so computed is 
to be included unless it is a Saturday, Sunday, or federal holiday, in 
which event the period runs until the end of the next day which is 
neither a Saturday, Sunday, nor a federal holiday. In computing a 
period of time which is 5 days or fewer, all Saturdays, Sundays, and 
federal holidays are to be excluded.
0
7. Revise Sec.  3001.18 to read as follows:


Sec.  3001.18  Nature of the proceedings.

    (a) Proceedings to be set for hearing. Except as otherwise provided 
in these rules, in any case noticed for a proceeding to be determined 
on the record pursuant to Sec.  3001.17(a), the Commission may hold a 
public hearing if a hearing is requested by any party to the proceeding 
or if the Commission in the exercise of its discretion determines that 
a hearing is in the public interest. The Commission may give notice of 
its determination that a hearing shall be held in its original notice 
of the proceeding or in a subsequent notice issued pursuant to 
paragraph (b) of this section and Sec.  3001.9.
    (b) Procedure in hearing cases. In proceedings which are to be set 
for hearing, the Commission shall issue a notice of hearing or 
prehearing conference pursuant to Sec.  3001.19. After the completion 
of the hearing, the Commission or the presiding officer shall receive 
such briefs and hear such oral argument as may be ordered by the 
Commission or the presiding officer pursuant to Sec.  3001.34 and Sec.  
3001.37. The Commission shall then issue an advisory opinion or final 
decision, as appropriate.
    (c) Procedure in non-hearing cases. In any case noticed for a 
proceeding to be determined on the record in which a hearing is not 
requested by any party or ordered by the Commission, the Commission or 
the presiding officer shall issue a notice of the procedure to be 
followed with regard to the filing of briefs and oral argument. The 
Commission shall then issue an advisory opinion or final decision, as 
appropriate. The Commission or presiding officer may, if necessary or 
desirable, call procedural conferences by issuance of a notice pursuant 
to Sec.  3001.19.
0
8. Revise Sec.  3001.19 to read as follows:


Sec.  3001.19  Notice of prehearing conference or hearing.

    In any proceeding noticed for a proceeding on the record pursuant 
to Sec.  3001.17(a), the Commission shall give due notice of any 
prehearing conference or hearing by including the time and place of the 
conference or hearing in the notice of proceeding or by subsequently 
issuing a notice of prehearing conference or hearing. Such notice of 
prehearing conference or hearing shall give the title and docket 
designation of the proceeding, a reference to the original notice of 
proceeding and the date of such notice, and the time and place of the 
conference or hearing. Such notice shall be published in the Federal 
Register and served on all participants in the proceeding. Notice of 
the time and place where a hearing will be reconvened shall be served 
on all participants in the proceeding unless announcement was made 
thereof by the presiding officer at the adjournment of an earlier 
session of the prehearing conference or hearing.
0
9. Revise Sec.  3001.20a to read as follows:


Sec.  3001.20a  Limited participation by persons not parties.

    Notwithstanding the provisions of Sec.  3001.20, any person may 
appear as a limited participator in any case that is noticed for a 
proceeding pursuant to Sec.  3001.17(a), in accordance with the 
following provisions:
    (a) Form of intervention. Notices of intervention as a limited 
participator shall be in writing, shall set forth the nature and extent 
of the intervenor's interest in the proceeding, and shall conform to 
the requirements of Sec. Sec.  3001.9 through 3001.12.
    (b) Oppositions. Oppositions to notices to intervene as a limited 
participator may be filed by any participant in the proceeding no later 
than 10 days after the notice of intervention as a limited participator 
is filed.
    (c) Scope of participation. Subject to the provisions of Sec.  
3001.30(f), limited participators may present evidence which is 
relevant to the issues involved in the proceeding and their testimony 
shall be subject to cross-examination on the same terms applicable to 
that of formal participants. Limited participators may file briefs or 
proposed findings pursuant to Sec.  3001.34 and Sec.  3001.35, and 
within 15 days after the release of an intermediate decision, or such 
other time as may be fixed by the Commission, they may file a written 
statement of their position on the issues. The Commission or the 
presiding officer may require limited participators having 
substantially like interests and positions to join together for any or 
all of the above purposes. Limited participators are not required to 
respond to discovery requests under Sec. Sec.  3001.25 through 3001.28 
except to the extent that those requests are directed specifically to 
testimony which the limited participators provided in the proceeding; 
however, limited participators are advised that failure to provide 
relevant and material information in support of their claims will be 
taken into account in determining the weight to be placed on their 
evidence and arguments.
0
10. In Sec.  3001.20b, revise the introductory paragraph and paragraph 
(a) to read as follows:


Sec.  3001.20b  Informal expression of views by persons not parties or 
limited participators (commenters).

    Notwithstanding the provisions of Sec.  3001.20 and Sec.  3001.20a, 
any person may file with the Commission, in any case that is noticed 
for a hearing pursuant to Sec.  3001.17(a), an informal statement of 
views in writing, in accordance with the following provisions:
    (a) Form of statement. A statement filed pursuant to this section 
may be submitted as a hardcopy letter mailed to the Secretary or an 
electronic message entered on the form provided this purpose under the 
``Contact Us'' link on the Commission's Web site, http://www.prc.gov.
* * * * *
0
11. In Sec.  3001.21, revise paragraph (a) to read as follows:

[[Page 22825]]

Sec.  3001.21  Motions.

    (a) Scope and contents. An application for an order or ruling not 
otherwise specifically provided for in this part shall be by motion. 
Motions shall set forth with particularity the ruling or relief sought, 
the grounds and basis therefor, and the statutory or other authority 
relied upon, and shall be filed with the Secretary and served pursuant 
to the provisions of Sec. Sec.  3001.9 to 3001.12. All motions to 
dismiss proceedings or other motions which involve a final 
determination of the proceeding shall be addressed to the Commission. 
After a presiding officer is designated in any proceeding, and before 
the issuance of an intermediate decision pursuant to Sec.  3001.39 or 
certification of the record to the Commission pursuant to Sec.  
3001.38, all other motions in that proceeding shall be addressed to the 
presiding officer.
* * * * *
0
12. In Sec.  3001.23, revise paragraphs (a)(7), (a)(8), (a)(9), and 
(a)(10) to read as follows:


Sec.  3001.23  Presiding officers.

    (a) * * *
    (7) To dispose of procedural requests or similar matters but not, 
before their intermediate decision, to dispose of motions made during 
hearings to dismiss proceedings or other motions which involve a final 
determination of the proceeding;
    (8) Within their discretion, or upon direction of the Commission, 
to certify any question to the Commission for its consideration and 
disposition;
    (9) To submit an intermediate decision in accordance with Sec.  
3001.38 and Sec.  3001.39; and
    (10) To take any other action necessary or appropriate to the 
discharge of the duties vested in them, consistent with the statutory 
or other authorities under which the Commission functions and with the 
rules, regulations, and policies of the Commission.
* * * * *
0
13. In Sec.  3001.24, revise paragraphs (a) and (d)(6) to read as 
follows:


Sec.  3001.24  Prehearing conferences.

    (a) Initiation and purposes. In any proceeding the Commission or 
the presiding officer may, with or without motion, upon due notice as 
to time and place, direct the participants in a proceeding to appear 
for a prehearing conference for the purposes of considering all 
possible ways of expediting the proceeding, including those in 
paragraph (d) of this section. It is the intent of the Commission to 
issue its advisory opinion on requests under section 3661 of the Act 
with the utmost practicable expedition. The Commission directs that 
these prehearing procedures shall be rigorously pursued by the 
presiding officer and all participants to that end.
* * * * *
    (d) * * *
    (6) Disclosure of the number, identity and qualifications of 
witnesses, and the nature of their testimony, particularly with respect 
to the policies of the Act and, as applicable according to the nature 
of the proceeding;
* * * * *
0
14. In Sec.  3001.25, revise paragraph (a) to read as follows:


Sec.  3001.25  Discovery--general policy.

    (a) Rules 26 through 28 allow discovery reasonably calculated to 
lead to admissible evidence during a noticed proceeding. Generally, 
discovery against a participant will be scheduled to end prior to the 
receipt into evidence of that participant's direct case. An exception 
to this procedure shall operate in all proceedings brought under 39 
U.S.C. 3661 when a participant needs to obtain information (such as 
operating procedures or data) available only from the Postal Service. 
Discovery requests of this nature are permissible only for the purpose 
of the development of rebuttal testimony and may be made up to 20 days 
prior to the filing date for final rebuttal testimony.
* * * * *
0
15. In Sec.  3001.27, revise paragraph (b) to read as follows:


Sec.  3001.27  Requests for production of documents or things for 
purpose of discovery.

* * * * *
    (b) Answers. The participant responding to the request shall file 
an answer with the Commission in conformance with Sec. Sec.  3001.9 
through 3001.12 within 14 days after the request is filed, or within 
such other period as may be fixed by the Commission or presiding 
officer. The answer shall state, with respect to each item or category, 
that inspection will be permitted as requested unless the request is 
objected to pursuant to paragraph (c) of this section.
* * * * *
0
16. In Sec.  3001.30, revise paragraphs (d), (e)(2), and (h) to read as 
follows:


Sec.  3001.30  Hearings.

* * * * *
    (d) Order of procedure. In public hearings before the Commission, 
the Postal Service shall open and close in proceedings which it has 
initiated under section 3661 of the Act, and a complainant shall open 
and close in proceedings on complaints filed under section 3662 of the 
Act and set for hearing pursuant to Sec.  3001.18(a). With respect to 
the order of presentation of all other participants, and in all other 
proceedings, unless otherwise ordered by the Commission, the presiding 
officer shall direct the order of presentation of evidence and issue 
such other procedural orders as may be necessary to assure the orderly 
and expeditious conclusion of the hearing.
    (e) * * *
    (2) Written cross-examination. Written cross-examination will be 
utilized as a substitute for oral cross-examination whenever possible, 
particularly to introduce factual or statistical evidence. Designations 
of written cross-examination should be served in accordance with 
Sec. Sec.  3001.9 through 3001.12 no later than three working days 
before the scheduled appearance of a witness. Designations shall 
identify every item to be offered as evidence, listing the participant 
who initially posed the discovery request, the witness and/or party to 
whom the question was addressed (if different from the witness 
answering), the number of the request and, if more than one answer is 
provided, the dates of all answers to be included in the record. (For 
example, ``PR-T1-17 to USPS witness Jones, answered by USPS witness 
Smith (March 1, 1997) as updated (March 21, 1997)).'' When a 
participant designates written cross-examination, two hard copies of 
the documents to be included shall simultaneously be submitted to the 
Secretary of the Commission. The Secretary of the Commission shall 
prepare for the record a packet containing all materials designated for 
written cross-examination in a format that facilitates review by the 
witness and counsel. The witness will verify the answers and materials 
in the packet, and they will be entered into the transcript by the 
presiding officer. Counsel may object to written cross-examination at 
that time, and any designated answers or materials ruled objectionable 
will be stricken from the record.
* * * * *
    (h) Rulings on motions. The presiding officer is authorized to rule 
upon any such motion not formally acted upon by the Commission prior to 
the commencement of a prehearing conference or hearing where immediate 
ruling is essential in order to proceed with the prehearing conference 
or hearing, and upon any motion to the presiding officer filed or made 
after the

[[Page 22826]]

commencement thereof, except that no motion made to the presiding 
officer, a ruling upon which would involve or constitute a final 
determination of the proceeding, shall be ruled upon affirmatively by 
the presiding officer except as a part of his/her intermediate 
decision. This section shall not preclude a presiding officer, within 
his/her discretion, from referring any motion made in hearing to the 
Commission for ultimate determination.
* * * * *
0
17. In Sec.  3001.31, revise paragraph (k)(3)(i)(i) to read as follows:


Sec.  3001.31  Evidence.

* * * * *
    (k) * * *
    (3) * * *
    (i) * * *
    (i) An expert on the design and operation of the program shall be 
provided at a technical conference to respond to any oral or written 
questions concerning information that is reasonably necessary to enable 
independent replication of the program output. Machine-readable data 
files and program files shall be provided in the form of a compact disk 
or other media or method approved in advance by the Office of Secretary 
and Administration of the Postal Regulatory Commission. Any machine-
readable data file or program file so provided must be identified and 
described in accompanying hardcopy documentation. In addition, files in 
text format must be accompanied by hardcopy instructions for printing 
them. Files in machine code must be accompanied by hardcopy 
instructions for executing them.
* * * * *
0
18. In Sec.  3001.31a, revise paragraph (c) to read as follows:


Sec.  3001.31a  In camera orders.

* * * * *
    (c) Release of in camera information. In camera documents and 
testimony shall constitute a part of the confidential records of the 
Commission. However, the Commission, on its own motion or pursuant to a 
request, may make in camera documents and testimony available for 
inspection, copying, or use by any other governmental agency. The 
Commission shall, in such circumstances, give reasonable notice of the 
impending disclosure to the affected party. However, such notice may be 
waived in extraordinary circumstances for good cause.
* * * * *
0
19. In Sec.  3001.32, revise paragraph (f) to read as follows:


Sec.  3001.32  Appeals from rulings of the presiding officer.

* * * * *
    (f) Review at conclusion of proceeding. If an interlocutory appeal 
is not certified pursuant to paragraph (b)(1) of this section, 
objection to the ruling may be raised on review of the presiding 
officer's intermediate decision, or, if the intermediate decision is 
omitted, in the participants' briefs in accordance with Sec.  3001.34.
* * * * *
0
20. In Sec.  3001.34, revise paragraphs (a) and (b)(3) to read as 
follows:


Sec.  3001.34  Briefs.

    (a) When filed. At the close of the taking of testimony in any 
proceeding, the Commission or the presiding officer shall fix the time 
for the filing and service of briefs, giving due regard to the timely 
issuance of the decision or advisory opinion. In addition, subject to 
such consideration, due regard shall be given to the nature of the 
proceeding, the complexity and importance of the issues involved, and 
the magnitude of the record. In cases subject to a limitation on the 
time available to the Commission for decision, the Commission shall 
generally direct that each participant shall file a single brief at the 
same time. In cases where, because of the nature of the issues and the 
record or the limited number of participants involved, the filing of 
initial and reply briefs, or the filing of initial, answering, and 
reply briefs, will not unduly delay the conclusion of the proceeding 
and will aid in the proper disposition of the proceeding, the 
participants may be directed to file more than one brief and at 
different times rather than a single brief at the same time. The 
presiding officer or the Commission may also order the filing of briefs 
during the course of the proceeding.
    (b) * * *
    (3) A clear, concise and definitive statement of the position of 
the filing participant as to the proposals of the Postal Service and 
the advisory opinion or decision to be issued;
* * * * *
0
21. Revise Sec.  3001.36 to read as follows:


Sec.  3001.36  Oral argument before the presiding officer.

    In any case in which the presiding officer is to issue an 
intermediate decision, such officer may permit the presentation of oral 
argument when, in his/her opinion, time permits, and the nature of the 
proceedings, the complexity or importance of the issues of fact or law 
involved, and the public interest warrants hearing such argument. The 
presiding officer shall determine the time and place for oral argument, 
and may specify the issue or issues on which oral argument is to be 
presented, the order in which the presentations shall be made, and the 
amount of time allowed each participant. A request for oral argument 
before the issuance of an intermediate decision shall be made during 
the course of the hearing on the record.
0
22. In Sec.  3001.39, revise paragraph (c) to read as follows:


Sec.  3001.39  Intermediate decisions.

* * * * *
    (c) Contents. All intermediate decisions shall include findings and 
conclusions, and the reasons or basis therefor, on all the material 
issues of fact, law, or discretion presented on the record, and the 
appropriate intermediate decision pursuant to the Act. An intermediate 
decision in a proceeding under section 3661 of the Act shall include a 
determination of the question of whether or not the proposed change in 
the nature of postal service conforms to the policies established under 
the Act.
* * * * *


Sec.  3001.40  [Amended]

0
23. Revise Sec.  3001.40 by removing the authority citation.


Sec.  3001.41  [Amended]

0
24. Revise Sec.  3001.41 by removing the authority citation.
0
25. In Sec.  3001.43, revise paragraphs (a), (c)(10), (e)(4)(i), 
(g)(1)(iii), and (g)(2)(iii) to read as follows:


Sec.  3001.43  Public attendance at Commission meetings.

    (a) Open Commission meetings. (1) Commissioners shall not jointly 
conduct or dispose of agency business other than in accordance with 
this section. Except as provided in paragraph (c) of this section, 
every portion of every meeting of the Commission shall be open to 
public observation.
* * * * *
    (c) * * *
    (10) Specifically concern the Commission's issuance of a subpoena 
or the Commission's participation in a civil action or appellate 
proceeding, an action in a foreign court or international tribunal, or 
an arbitration, or the initiation, conduct or disposition by the 
Commission of a particular case of formal Commission adjudication 
pursuant to the procedures in section 554 of title 5, U.S.C. or 
otherwise

[[Page 22827]]

involving a determination on the record after opportunity for a 
hearing.
* * * * *
    (e) * * *
    (4) * * *
    (i) Publicly posting a copy of the document in the reception area 
of the Postal Regulatory Commission located at 901 New York Avenue NW., 
Suite 200, Washington, DC 20268-0001;
* * * * *
    (g) * * *
    (1) * * *
    (iii) Ten copies of such requests must be received by the Office of 
Secretary and Administration no later than three working days after the 
issuance of the notice of meeting to which the request pertains. 
Requests received after that time will be returned to the requester 
with a statement that the request was untimely received and that copies 
of any nonexempt portions of the transcript or minutes for the meeting 
in question will ordinarily be available in the Office of Secretary and 
Administration 10 working days after the meeting.
    (2) * * *
    (iii) Ten copies of such requests should be filed with the Office 
of Secretary and Administration as soon as possible after the issuance 
of the notice of meeting to which the request pertains. However, a 
single copy of the request will be accepted. Requests to close meetings 
must be received by the Office of Secretary and Administration no later 
than the time scheduled for the meeting to which such a request 
pertains.
* * * * *

Subpart D--Rules Applicable to Requests for Changes in the Nature 
of Postal Services

0
26. Revise Sec.  3001.72 to read as follows:

Subpart D--Rules Applicable to Requests for Changes in the Nature 
of Postal Services


Sec.  3001.72  Filing of formal requests.

    Whenever the Postal Service determines to request that the 
Commission issue an advisory opinion on a proposed change in the nature 
of postal services subject to this subpart, the Postal Service shall 
file with the Commission a formal request for such an opinion in 
accordance with the requirements of Sec. Sec.  3001.9 to 3001.11 and 
Sec.  3001.74. Such request shall be filed not less than 90 days in 
advance of the date on which the Postal Service proposes to make 
effective the change in the nature of postal services involved. Within 
5 days after the Postal Service has filed a formal request for an 
advisory opinion in accordance with this subsection, the Secretary 
shall lodge a notice thereof with the Director of the Federal Register 
for publication in the Federal Register.
0
27. Revise Sec.  3001.75 to read as follows:


Sec.  3001.75  Service by the Postal Service.

    The provisions of Sec.  3001.12 govern the Postal Service's service 
requirements for proceedings conducted under this subpart. Service must 
be made on all participants as defined in Sec.  3001.5(h).

[FR Doc. 2013-09037 Filed 4-16-13; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 7710-FW-P