[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 79 (Wednesday, April 24, 2013)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 24132-24134]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-09603]


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POSTAL SERVICE

39 CFR Part 111


New Mailing Standards for Live Animals and Special Handling

AGENCY: Postal ServiceTM.

ACTION: Proposed rule.

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SUMMARY: The Postal Service is proposing to revise Mailing Standards of 
the United States Postal Service, Domestic Mail Manual (DMM[supreg]) 
503.14 and 601.9.3 to require special handling service for shipments 
containing certain types of live animals, to limit the mail classes 
available for use when shipping certain types of live animals, and to 
expand the mailability of live animals domestically to include any 
adult bird weighing no more than 25 pounds.

DATES: Submit comments on or before May 24, 2013.

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. You may inspect and photocopy all written 
comments at USPS[supreg] Headquarters Library, 475 L'Enfant Plaza SW., 
11th Floor North, Washington, DC, by appointment only between the hours 
of 9 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. Call 1-202-268-2906 in 
advance for an appointment. Email

[[Page 24133]]

comments, containing the name and address of the commenter, may be sent 
to: ProductClassification@usps.gov, with a subject line of ``Live 
Animals.'' Faxed comments are not accepted.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Grace Letto at 202-268-8370 or Rachel 
Devadas at 202-268-7276.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Postal Service currently requires 
special handling service for designated shipments of live animals 
needing additional care during transport and handling to its 
destination as follows: Domestic shipments containing honeybees or baby 
poultry are currently required to include special handling service, 
unless First-Class Mail[supreg], First-Class Package Service\TM\, or 
Priority Mail[supreg] is used. Shipments containing live animals must 
also be marked on the address side with a description of the contents, 
even if special handling service is not purchased. These markings 
provide notice to Postal Service employees that specific care, 
different from the handling of ordinary mailpieces, is required. 
Circumstances requiring the Postal Service to handle shipments 
containing live animals differently also include:
    a. Protection of Postal Service employees and the public against 
harm from diseased animals.
    b. Protection of the mail and the environment against damage to the 
shipping container or the live animal and offensive odors or noise.
    c. Protection of animals against death, taking into account the 
expected time and temperature in transit (weather conditions), and 
packaging sufficient to resist impact, heat and cold, and to prevent 
suffocation.
    The Postal Service consistently accepts, transports, and delivers 
live animals with additional care in handling, regardless of the mail 
class or the extra service being purchased. This additional care 
ensures safe and effective processing for mail containing live animals 
through the mailstream to its destination. Consequently, the Postal 
Service incurs additional expense to isolate and protect live shipments 
even when sent by air transportation, such as with Express Mail[supreg] 
or Priority Mail[supreg].
    If this proposal is adopted the Postal Service will require special 
handling service for all parcels containing bulk shipments of bees 
(e.g. a queen bee packaged with an attending swarm), day-old poultry 
and adult birds, regardless of the class of mail used.
    Additionally, the Postal Service currently affixes a unique 
tracking barcode on all parcels presented at retail, and recommends 
that all mailers not presenting shipments at retail include an 
Intelligent Mail[supreg] package barcode (IMpb) on their mailpieces, 
when not already required to do so as a condition of the mail class and 
price category or postage payment method used. If this proposal is 
adopted, the Postal Service will require mailers purchasing special 
handing to either present their mailpieces at retail, or to include an 
IMpb, embedded with the appropriate service type code applicable to 
special handling and the mail class used, on their mailpieces. The 
Postal Service also proposes that shipments of live animals that 
include special handling must be accepted at either a USPS retail unit, 
Business Mail Entry Unit (BMEU) or a Detached Mail Unit (DMU). The 
Postal Service anticipates that the combination of IMpb tracking and 
special handling service will provide customers with the service they 
expect as their parcels containing live animals are transported to 
their respective destinations.
    To assure prompt or expedited delivery and to minimize the chances 
of animals dying in transit, the Postal Service is also proposing to 
require shipments containing amphibians and reptiles to be limited to 
the following products: Express Mail, Priority Mail (excluding Critical 
Mail[supreg]), First-Class Mail (parcels only) or First-Class Package 
Service. If this proposal is adopted, shipments of live amphibians and 
reptiles would no longer be permitted for use with any Package 
Services, Standard Post\TM\, or Parcel Select[supreg] products.
    Currently, certain disease-free adult birds can be accepted for 
domestic shipment when mailed in compliance with applicable 
regulations. Mailability is currently restricted to adult chickens, 
turkeys, guinea fowl, doves, pigeons, pheasants, partridges, quail 
ducks, geese, and swans. The Postal Service is proposing to expand its 
mailing standards to allow for the shipment of any disease-free live 
bird, weighing no more than 25 pounds, which can be legally 
transported. If this proposal is adopted, mailers must be compliant 
with all applicable governmental laws and regulations, including the 
Lacey Act, the Endangered Species Act (ESA), and regulations of the 
U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and any 
state, municipal or local ordinances. Mailings must also be compliant 
with the guidelines provided in USPS Publication 14, Prohibitions and 
Restrictions on Mailing Animals, Plants, and Related Matter, Chapter 5.
    Although we are 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), we invite 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.

List of Subjects in 39 CFR Part 111

    Administrative practice and procedure, Postal Service.

    Accordingly, 39 CFR part 111 is proposed to be amended as follows:

PART 111 -- [AMENDED]

0
1. The authority citation for 39 CFR part 111 continues to read as 
follows:

    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.

0
2. Revise the following sections of 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)

* * * * *

500 Additional Mailing Services

* * * * *

503 Extra Services

* * * * *

14.0 Special Handling

14.1 Fees for Special Handling

* * * * *

14.1.2 Fee and Postage

    [Revise the first sentence of 14.1.2 as follows:]
    The applicable special handling fee must be paid in addition to 
postage for each addressed piece for which special handling service is 
required by standards, or is requested. * * *

14.2 Basic Information

14.2.1 Description

    [Revise the 14.2.1 by adding a new fourth and fifth sentence as 
follows:]
    * * * Items with special handling service receive tracking and when 
not presented at retail must include an Intelligent Mail package 
barcode prepared in accordance with 708.5. Any mailpieces containing 
live animals and including special handling must be presented at retail 
postal unit, a Business Mail Entry Unit (BMEU), or a Detached Mail Unit 
(DMU).

[[Page 24134]]

14.2.2 Eligible Matter

    [Revise 14.2.2 as follows:]
    Special handling service is available only for Express Mail, 
Priority Mail (excluding Critical Mail), First-Class Mail, First-Class 
Package Service, Standard Post, Package Services, and Parcel Select 
(except Parcel Select Lightweight) pieces.
* * * * *
    [Revise title of 14.2.4 and text as follows:]

14.2.4 Bees, Day-Old Poultry and Adult Birds

    Special handling is required for shipments containing day-old 
poultry, adult birds and bulk shipments of bees (e.g. a queen bee 
packaged with an attending swarm), regardless of the class of mail 
purchased.
* * * * *
    [Delete item 14.2.6 in its entirety]
* * * * *

600 Basic Standards for All Mailing Services

601 Mailability

* * * * *

9.0 Perishables

* * * * *

9.3 Live Animals

* * * * *
    [Revise the second sentence of 9.3.2 as follows.]

9.3.2 Day-Old Poultry

    * * * Live day-old chickens, ducks, emus, geese, guinea fowl, 
partridges, pheasants (pheasants may be mailed only from April through 
August), quail, and turkeys are acceptable in the mail only if:
* * * * *
    [Revise the text of item f as follows:]
    f. The shipment bears special handling postage in addition to 
regular postage.
* * * * *
    [Revise and reformat 9.3.3 to include a new last sentence, and a 
new item a and b as follows:]

9.3.3 Small Cold-Blooded Animals

    * * * The following also apply:
    a. Reptiles (e.g. lizards, skinks, and baby alligators and caimans 
not more than 20 inches long) must be mailed by Express Mail, Priority 
Mail (excluding Critical Mail), First-Class Mail (parcels only), or 
First-Class Package Services.
    b. Amphibians (e.g. toads, frogs, and salamanders) must be mailed 
by Express Mail, Priority Mail (excluding Critical Mail), First-Class 
Mail (parcels only), or First-Class Mail Package Services.
    [Revise title and introductory text of 9.3.4 as follows:]

9.3.4 Adult Birds

    Disease-free adult birds, weighing no more than 25 pounds, may be 
mailed domestically. Mailers must be compliant with all applicable 
governmental laws and regulations, including the Lacey Act, the 
Endangered Species Act (ESA), and regulations of the U.S. Department of 
Agriculture, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and any state, municipal 
or local ordinances. Mailings must also be compliant with the 
guidelines provided in USPS Publication 14, Prohibitions and 
Restrictions on Mailing Animals, Plants, and Related Matter, Chapter 5. 
In addition, each container or package must be marked as required by 
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service under 50 CFR 14. Adult birds are 
mailable as follows:
    [Revise 9.3.4a as follows:]
    a. The mailer must send adult fowl by Express Mail, including 
Special Handling service, in secure containers approved by the manager, 
Product Classification (see 608.8.0 for address).
* * * * *

9.3.7 Bees

    [Revise the second sentence of 9.3.7 as follows:]
    * * * Bulk shipments of bees (e.g. a queen bee packaged with an 
attending swarm) must include postage for special handling service. * * 
*
* * * * *
    We will publish an appropriate amendment to 39 CFR part 111 to 
reflect these changes if our proposal is adopted.

Stanley F. Mires,
Attorney, Legal Policy & Legislative Advice.
[FR Doc. 2013-09603 Filed 4-23-13; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE P