How To Participate
To ensure the continuity of the Commission’s mission and safety of its workforce, the Commission has temporarily suspended on-site operation due to the impact of COVID-19. The Commission is fully operational and conducting all business as normal from remote workstations. Due to agency offsite working status, responses may be delayed.
PARTICIPATING IN A PROCEEDING PENDING BEFORE COMMISSION
In general, any person may participate in a Commission proceeding and there are a number of ways to do so.
Following a proceeding
Commission proceedings are conducted to promote transparent and accountable regulation of the Postal Service. Proceeding records - including Commission orders, hearing transcripts, testimony, evidence, and other documents - are maintained online and are available for review by anyone with Internet access, or at the Commission's offices at 901 New York Avenue, NW, Suite 200, Washington, DC. The public may also attend open hearings as they are conducted; however, they cannot participate in a hearing unless they are invited to do so by the Commission or are a registered party or participant to the proceeding.
Interested persons may participate in Commission proceedings in accordance with the Commission’s Rules of Practice. Significant revisions to the rules became effective on April 20, 2020. Participants can access the revised rules using the References tab on the Commission’s homepage. The References tab also contains a link to two schedules that show the source of the revised rules and the disposition of the former rules.
The rules of practice are divided into two subchapters. Subchapter C contains generally applicable Rules of Practice and Procedure in part 3010. With certain exceptions, those rules are applicable to all proceedings. Included in part 3010 are rules for the two major types of Commission proceedings—informal notice and comment proceedings and formal proceedings that employ trial-type hearings on the record.
Most Commission proceedings are conducted as “notice and comment proceedings” in which interested persons express their views primarily by submitting comments. A much smaller number of proceedings are conducted as administrative hearings which are judicial in nature and require participants to comply with more complex rules and procedures.
Subchapter D sets forth special rules of practice for certain specific types of proceedings. Included in subchapter D are procedures for Postal Service proposals to make changes in the nature of postal services, appeals of Postal Service determinations to close post offices, complaint cases, and other specialized types of cases.
A knowledgeable public representative is appointed to participate in all Commission proceedings on behalf of the general public. The public representative is available to advise participants unfamiliar with Commission practices and procedures.
Filing Online increases security, stability and functionality for dockets processing. Persons representing a participant in a Commission proceeding must become an Account Holder in order to file documents with the Commission. A temporary account can be obtained online immediately. It may only be used to file a notice of intervention or a comment that has been solicited by the Commission. It expires after 35 days.
TWO WAYS TO PARTICIPATE
Interested persons participate in notice and comment proceedings by filing comments. They may also request the Commission to seek relevant information from the Postal Service and may participate in conferences, if any, convened by the Commission.
In order to participate in a hearing on the record, participants must first file a notice of intervention pursuant to Rule 142 in order to become a party to the proceeding. Parties in Commission proceedings are expected to comply with more complex Commission rules and procedures
Filing with the Commission
All material filed with the Commission must be filed in electronic format using the Commission’s Filing Online system, unless filing in hardcopy is permitted by one of the exceptions listed in Rule 120(a).
To file using the Filing Online system, individuals must first register with the Commission through a "temporary (35-day)" or "permanent" account. A temporary account can be arranged online in minutes, while a permanent account must be established in writing. For more information about registering for an account, click here.
Once an account is established, individuals may submit comments and other documents electronically via the Commission web site. Submissions will be posted online with all other docketed filings. If you have questions about filing documents in a docket, please email them to the Commission at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the dockets clerk at (202) 789-6845 and (202) 789-6846.