Service Standard Changes, 33787-33799 [2021-13515]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 120 / Friday, June 25, 2021 / Notices Office of Personnel Management. Alexys Stanley, Director, Office of Privacy and Information Management. [FR Doc. 2021–13529 Filed 6–24–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6325–38–P POSTAL REGULATORY COMMISSION [Docket No. N2021–2; Order No. 5920] Service Standard Changes Postal Regulatory Commission. Notice. AGENCY: ACTION: The Commission is acknowledging a recently-filed Postal Service request for an advisory opinion on the service standards for First-Class Mail Package Service (FCPS). This document invites public comments on the request and addresses several related procedural steps. DATES: Notices of intervention are due: July 1, 2021; Live WebEx Technical Conference: June 28, 2021, at 11:00 a.m., Eastern Daylight Time, Virtual. ADDRESSES: Submit notices of intervention electronically via the Commission’s Filing Online system at http://www.prc.gov. Persons interested in intervening who cannot submit their views electronically should contact the person identified in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: David A. Trissell, General Counsel, at 202–789–6820. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: SUMMARY: Table of Contents I. Introduction II. Pre-Filing Issues III. The Request IV. Initial Administrative Actions V. Ordering Paragraphs lotter on DSK11XQN23PROD with NOTICES1 On June 17, 2021, the Postal Service filed a request for an advisory opinion from the Commission regarding planned 1 United States Postal Service Request for an Advisory Opinion on Changes in the Nature of Postal Services, June 17, 2021 (Request). FCPS ‘‘is a mailing service available for lightweight packages—for retail mailers, the weight of the package cannot exceed 13 ounces; for commercial mailers, the weight of the package cannot exceed 18:38 Jun 24, 2021 Jkt 253001 15.999 ounces.’’ Notice of Pre-Filing Conference, May 25, 2021, at 1, n.1 (Notice). 2 See United States Postal Service, Delivering for America: Our Vision and Ten-Year Plan to Achieve Financial Sustainability and Service Excellence, March 23, 2021, at 3, available at https:// about.usps.com/what/strategic-plans/delivering-foramerica/assets/USPS_Delivering-For-America.pdf (Postal Service’s Strategic Plan). Further information related to the Postal Service’s Strategic Plan is available at https://about.usps.com/what/ strategic-plans/delivering-for-america/. 3 Notice and Order Concerning the Postal Service’s Pre-Filing Conference, May 26, 2021, at 1– 4 (Order No. 5900). II. Pre-Filing Issues On March 23, 2021, the Postal Service published a 10-year strategic plan announcing potential changes intended to achieve financial stability and service excellence.2 In connection with this publication, on May 25, 2021, the Postal Service also filed a notice of its intent to conduct a pre-filing conference regarding its proposed changes to the service standards for FCPS, which would ‘‘generally affect service on a nationwide or substantially nationwide basis.’’ Notice at 1 (quoting 39 U.S.C. 3661(b)). On May 26, 2021, the Commission issued Order No. 5900, which established Docket No. N2021–2 to consider the Postal Service’s proposed changes, notified the public concerning the Postal Service’s pre-filing conference, and appointed a Public Representative.3 Due to the COVID–19 pandemic, the Postal Service held its pre-filing conference virtually on June 8, 2021, from 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time (EDT). See Request at 2. The Postal Service asserts that it completed the pre-filing requirements appearing in 39 CFR 3020.111 and certifies that it has made a good faith effort to address concerns of interested persons about the Postal Service’s proposal raised at the prefiling conference. See id. III. The Request I. Introduction VerDate Sep<11>2014 A. The Postal Service’s Planned Changes The Postal Service states that the existing service standards for FCPS mirror the existing service standards applied to Market Dominant SinglePiece First-Class Mail (letter- and flatshaped mailpieces). See Request at 3. The Postal Service’s proposed changes for FCPS are similar to the changes proposed for Market Dominant FirstClass Mail in Docket N2021–1, because the FCPS service standards would also be adjusted to account for additional drive time between origin and destination processing facilities. See Notice at 2; see also Request at 3. However, the actual service standards that the Postal Service proposes to apply to FCPS would differ from those proposed for First-Class Mail. See id. The Postal Service plans for its proposed changes for FCPS to become effective no earlier than October 1, 2021. See Request at 1. The Postal Service proposes to expand the scope of the existing 2-Day service standard applied to FCPS. See Request at 3. For FCPS within the contiguous United States, the Postal Service proposes to narrow the scope of the existing 3-Day service standard; instead 4-Day and 5-Day service standards would apply to certain FCPS traveling longer distances between origin and destination. See id. Overall for FCPS volume within the contiguous United States, the Postal Service projects that approximately 23.6 percent would be subject to the proposed 2-Day service standard; 44.5 percent would be subject to the proposed 3-Day service standard; approximately 17.3 percent would be subject to the proposed 4-Day service standard; and approximately 14.6 percent would be subject to the proposed 5-Day service standard. See id. at 4, Figure 1. The Postal Service projects that pharmaceutical volume would experience less impact from the proposed changes than other FCPS volume, estimating that almost all pharmaceutical volume currently subject to the 2-Day service standard and the majority of pharmaceutical volume currently subject to the 3-Day service standard would remain subject to those respective service standards. See id. at 5. Specifically, the Postal Service proposes to apply the following service standards to FCPS. changes to the service standards for First-Class Package Service (FCPS).1 The intended effective date of the Postal Service’s planned changes is no earlier than October 1, 2021. Request at 1. The Request was filed pursuant to 39 U.S.C. 3661 and 39 CFR part 3020. Before issuing its advisory opinion, the Commission shall accord an opportunity for a formal, on-the-record hearing pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 556 and 557. 39 U.S.C. 3661(c). This Order provides information on the Postal Service’s planned changes, explains and establishes the process for the on-therecord hearing, and lays out the procedural schedule to be followed in this case. Title: Disabled Dependent Questionnaire. OMB Number: 3206–0179. Frequency: On occasion. Affected Public: Individual or Households. Number of Respondents: 2,500. Estimated Time per Respondent: 1 hour. Total Burden Hours: 2,500 hours. 33787 PO 00000 Frm 00155 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\25JNN1.SGM 25JNN1 33788 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 120 / Friday, June 25, 2021 / Notices Figure 1 e48 contiauous sblt• where AOC, and dffllnation SCF ls and/or destlnatin, In no ' ' ' -_- - ' •fCPS fer whk:~ the~ time within ~ u contiguoi.1$ state$ between origin P&OCI', destination AOC;and d9$tlnatlon SCF exceeds_ 50 hours •All other f(:PS t<> nori<ontiauous United States ~ s Notes: • Specfflcally, thlS refers to the folloWlng: • FCPS originating in the COntigUOUS 48 states destined to the city of Anchorage. Alaska, the 968 3-0iglt ZIP Code area In Hawali, or the 006, 007, or 009 3-0iglt ZIP Code areas in Puerto Rico. • FCPS originating in the 006, 007, or 009 3-Dlglt ZIP Code areas In Puerto Rico and the deSttnatlon IS in the contiguous 48 states. • FCPS originating in Hawaii and the destination IS In Guam, or Vice versa. • FCPS originating In Hawaii and the destination Is In Amerk:an Samoa, or Vice versa. • FCPS for WlliCh both the origin alld destination are Wittlin Alaska. Request at 5. "SCP refers to "Secilonal center Fadlify."' Id 3t 3. 'With resped: to a paltlcular SCF, "tntra-SCP refers to VOiumes that Originate and ~ within the 3-Dlglt,ZIP Code areas assigned to that SCF In the DOrnestlc Mall Manual alld "Inter-SCP refers to VOiumes that origlnate OIJtslde those 3-0lglt ZIP Code areas. RevlSed service Standards for Mart<et-Oomlnant Mail Products, 77 Fed. Reg. 31,190, 31,194, n.12 (May 25, 2012) (COdlfled at 39 CFR pt 121). "P&DCP refers to Processing & Dlstrlbution center or Facfflty. Request at 3, "ADC" refers to Area OistflbUtlon Center. 77 Fed. Reg. 31,192; SOUrce: Requestat3, 5. The Postal Service states that attempting to meet the existing service standards has led to high costs, transportation inefficiencies, and difficulties in providing reliable and consistent service performance. See Request at 6. The Postal Service explains that transporting FCPS by surface (trucks) is more reliable and cost-effective than air transportation. See id. The Postal Service asserts that the proposed changes would allow the Postal Service to use surface rather than air transportation for more FCPS between additional Postal Service origin and destination processing facilities (OD Pairs). See id. The Postal Service states that the proposed changes could generate a net improvement to the Postal Service’s finances of approximately $55 million annually, when considering transportation cost VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:38 Jun 24, 2021 Jkt 253001 savings and the Postal Service’s estimate that the proposal would not materially impact FCPS volumes. See id. at 8. The Postal Service asserts that implementing the proposed changes would enable it to: Provide more reliable and consistent service performance, improve its ability to run according to its operating plans and optimize its surface transportation network, increase its use of more costeffective air carriers for volume that will continue to be transported by air (such as volume destined for non-contiguous areas), achieve significant cost savings due to the creation of a more efficient transportation network, and implement future operational benefits. See id. at 6– 9. It adds that the proposed changes are a key component of the Postal Service’s Strategic Plan, intended to achieve financial stability and service excellence. See id. at 9. PO 00000 Frm 00156 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Further, the Postal Service asserts that the proposed changes would conform to the policies of title 39, United States Code. See id. at 9–12. The Postal Service discusses how the proposed changes would continue to satisfy the universal service provisions appearing in 39 U.S.C. 101, 403, and 3661(a) under the proposed service standards.4 The Postal Service also asserts that the proposed changes would not impair compliance with the policies of 39 U.S.C. 3633, which govern the financial performance of competitive products. See Request at 11–12. 4 See id. at 9–11. The Postal Service observes that the Commission has concluded that the universal service obligation extends to competitive products. See id. at 9, n.1 (citing Postal Regulatory Commission, Report on Universal Postal Service and the Postal Monopoly, 25, December 19, 2008, available at https://www.prc.gov/docs/61/61628/ USO%20Report.pdf). E:\FR\FM\25JNN1.SGM 25JNN1 EN25JN21.002</GPH> lotter on DSK11XQN23PROD with NOTICES1 B. The Postal Service’s Position Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 120 / Friday, June 25, 2021 / Notices C. The Postal Service’s Direct Case The Postal Service is required to file its direct case along with the Request. See 39 CFR 3020.114. The Postal Service’s direct case includes all of the prepared evidence and testimony upon which the Postal Service proposes to rely on in order to establish that its proposal accords with and conforms to the policies of title 39, United States Code. See id. The Postal Service provides the direct testimony of three 33789 witnesses and identifies a fourth individual to serve as its institutional witness and provide information relevant to the Postal Service’s proposal that is not provided by other Postal Service witnesses. Table 1 Postal Service Witnesses Witness ~. • 1. Stephen B. • • 2. Michelle Kim • • 3. ThomasJ. • Ed • • 4. Sharon Owens lotter on DSK11XQN23PROD with NOTICES1 USPS~T-1 USPS-T-2 USPS-T-3 None filed Request at 2, 4, 6-8. Additionally, the Postal Service filed seven library references, four of which are available to the public and three of VerDate Sep<11>2014 The proposed service standard changes and their benefits How the proposed service standard changes would affect current mail volume in the contiguous United States (including the actual impact of the proposed changes, in terms of changes to the OD Pairs, as well as current FCPS volume) . The overall impact of the proposed service standard changes on the Postal Service's financial situation The projected transportation cost savings related to the proposal Trends in the lightweight package market How the proposed serviee standard changes· may impact customer satisfaction The market research conducted to estimate the potential·volume· and contnbution impact of the proposed··service standard chaooes Institutional witness capable of providing infonnation relevant to the Postal Service's proposl:ll that is not provided by other Postal Serviee witnesses 18:38 Jun 24, 2021 Jkt 253001 which are designated as non-public material. PO 00000 Frm 00157 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\25JNN1.SGM 25JNN1 EN25JN21.003</GPH> Source: Designation Topic{sJ 33790 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 120 / Friday, June 25, 2021 / Notices P Designation tal S l'iHe Table2 Lib Rf S1onsori119 Witne$s • LR-N2021-2-1 Calculating Transportation Cost Changes Michelle Kim • LR-N2021-2-2 Model Input Data • LR-N2021-2-3 Model Defining Tools • LR-N2021-2-4 Model Results Stephen B. ~ Stephen B. ~ Stephen B. ~ Note: The Postal Service filed the three non-publle library references under seal (Shaded In the above table), asserting that they consist of detailed volume and cost Information regarding purchased transportatiOn; data that reveal cost, volume, wetg.ht, modes of transportation, transportation WindOws, service performance lnformatiOn for competitive products; and market research on FCPS developed by an external firm on behalf of the Postal Service. see Notice of United States Postal servlee of Flllng of Library References and Application for Non-Public Treatment, June 17, 2021, Application of the Postal Service for Non-Public Treatment, at 1, 3-6. Source: Notice of United States Postal service of FIiing of Library References and Applleatlon for Non-Public Treatment, June 17, 2021. lotter on DSK11XQN23PROD with NOTICES1 A. General Procedures The procedural rules in 39 CFR part 3020 apply to Docket No. N2021–2. Before issuing its advisory opinion, the Commission shall accord an opportunity for a formal, on-the-record hearing pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 556 and 557. 39 U.S.C. 3661(c). The Commission will sit en banc for Docket No. N2021– 2. See 39 CFR 3020.122(b). Due to the COVID–19 pandemic, the Commission is conducting all business, including any hearing or public meeting for Docket No. N2021–2 virtually and not in person. Commission would not evaluate or opine on the merits of such alternative proposals in its advisory opinion. See Order No. 2080 at 18. Pursuant to its discretion, the Commission may undertake evaluation of alternatives or other issues raised by participants in separate proceedings (such as special studies or public inquires). See 39 CFR 3020.102(b). Moreover, any interested person may petition the Commission to initiate a separate proceeding (such as a rulemaking or public inquiry) at any time. See 39 CFR 3010.201(b) (initiation of notice and comment proceedings). C. Designation of Presiding Officer B. Scope Docket No. N2021–2 is limited in scope to the specific changes proposed by the Postal Service in its Request. See 39 CFR 3020.102(b). To the extent that participants raise alternative proposals and present reasons why those alternatives may be superior to the Postal Service’s proposal, the Commission would interpret such discussion as critiquing the specific changes proposed by the Postal Service in its Request.5 However, the Pursuant to 39 CFR 3010.106 and 3020.122(b), the Commission appoints Commissioner Ann C. Fisher to serve as presiding officer in Docket No. N2021– 2, effective immediately. In addition to the authority delegated to the presiding officer under 39 CFR 3010.106(c), the Commission expands the presiding officer’s authority to allow her to propound formal discovery requests upon any party, at her discretion. The numerical limitation on interrogatories appearing in 39 CFR 3020.117(a) shall 5 See Docket No. RM2012–4, Order Adopting Amended Rules of Procedure for Nature of Service Proceedings Under 39 U.S.C. 3661, May 20, 2014, at 18 (Order No. 2080). VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:38 Jun 24, 2021 Jkt 253001 PO 00000 Frm 00158 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 not apply to the presiding officer. The Commission also authorizes Commissioner Fisher to rule on procedural issues such as motions for late acceptance and discovery-related matters such as motions to be excused from answering discovery requests. Commissioner Fisher shall have authority to issue any ruling in this docket not otherwise specifically reserved to the Commission by 39 CFR 3020 and 3010.106. D. Procedural Schedule The Commission establishes a procedural schedule, which appears below the signature of this Order as Attachment 1. See 39 CFR 3010.151, 3020.110; see also 39 CFR part 3020 Appendix A. These dates may be changed only if good cause is shown, if the Commission later determines that the Request is incomplete, if the Commission determines that the Postal Service has significantly modified the Request, or for other reasons as determined by the Commission. See 39 CFR 3020.110(b) and (c). E:\FR\FM\25JNN1.SGM 25JNN1 EN25JN21.004</GPH> IV. Initial Administrative Actions Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 120 / Friday, June 25, 2021 / Notices E. How To Access Material Filed in This Proceeding 1. Using the Commission’s Website The public portions of the Postal Service’s filing are available for review on the Commission’s website (http:// www.prc.gov). The Postal Service’s electronic filing of the Request and prepared direct evidence effectively serves the persons who participated in the pre-filing conference. See 39 CFR 3020.104. Other material filed in this proceeding will be available for review on the Commission’s website, unless the information contained therein is subject to an application for non-public treatment. 2. Using Methods Other Than the Commission’s Website The Postal Service must serve hard copies of its Request and prepared direct evidence ‘‘only upon those persons who have notified the Postal Service, in writing, during the pre-filing conference(s), that they do not have access to the Commission’s website.’’ 39 CFR 3020.104. If you demonstrate that you are unable to effectively use the Commission’s Filing Online system or are unable to access the internet, then the Secretary of the Commission will serve material filed in Docket No. N2021–2 upon you via First-Class Mail. See 39 CFR 3010.127(b) and (c). You may request physical service by mailing a document demonstrating your need to the Office of Secretary and Administration, Postal Regulatory Commission, 901 New York Avenue NW, Suite 200, Washington, DC 20268– 0001. Service may be delayed due to the impact of the COVID–19 pandemic. Pursuant to 39 CFR 3010.127(c), the Secretary shall maintain a service list identifying no more than two individuals designated for physical service of documents for each party intervening in this proceeding. Accordingly, each party must ensure that its listing is accurate and should promptly notify the Secretary of any errors or changes. See 39 CFR 3010.127(c). lotter on DSK11XQN23PROD with NOTICES1 3. Non-Public Material The Commission’s rules on how to file and access non-public material appear in 39 CFR part 3011. Each individual seeking non-public access must familiarize themselves with these provisions, including the rules governing eligibility for access; nondissemination, use, and care of the nonpublic material; sanctions for violations of protective conditions; and how to VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:38 Jun 24, 2021 Jkt 253001 terminate or amend access.6 Any person seeking access to non-public material must file a motion with the Commission containing the information required by 39 CFR 3011.301(b)(1)–(4). Each motion must attach a description of the protective conditions and a certification to comply with protective conditions executed by each person or entity (and each individual working on behalf of the person or entity) seeking access. 39 CFR 3011.301(b)(5)–(6). To facilitate compliance with 39 CFR 3011.301(b)(5)–(6), a template Protective Conditions Statement and Certification to Comply with Protective Conditions appears below the signature of this Order as Attachment 2, for completion and attachment to a motion for access. See 39 CFR part 3011 subpart C, appendix A. Persons seeking access to non-public material are advised that actual notice provided to the Postal Service pursuant to 39 CFR 3011.301(b)(4) will expedite resolution of the motion, particularly if the motion for access is uncontested by the Postal Service. Non-public information must be redacted from filings submitted through the Commission’s website; instead, nonpublic information must be filed under seal as required by 39 CFR part 3011 subpart B. F. How To File Material in This Proceeding 1. Using the Commission’s Filing Online System Except as provided in 39 CFR 3010.120(a), all material filed with the Commission shall be submitted in electronic format using the Filing Online system, which is available over the internet through the Commission’s website. The Commission’s website accepts filings during the Commission’s regular business hours, which are from 8:00 a.m. through 4:30 p.m. EDT, except for Saturdays, Sundays, and Federal holidays. A guide to using the Filing Online system, including how to create an account, is available at https:// www.prc.gov/how-to-participate. If you have questions about how to use the Filing Online system, please contact the dockets clerk by email at dockets@ prc.gov or telephone at (202) 789–6847. Please be advised that the dockets clerk can only answer procedural questions but may not provide legal advice or recommendations. 6 See PO 00000 39 CFR 3011.300, 3011.302–304. Frm 00159 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 33791 2. Using Methods Other Than the Commission’s Filing Online System Material may be filed using a method other than the Commission’s website only if at least one of the following exceptions applies: • The material cannot reasonably be converted to electronic format, • The material contains non-public information (see 39 CFR part 3011), • The filer is unable to effectively use the Commission’s Filing Online system and the document is 10 pages or fewer, or • The Secretary has approved an exception to the requirements to use the Commission’s Filing Online system based on a showing of good cause. 39 CFR 3010.120(a). Material subject to these exceptions may be filed by mail to the Office of Secretary and Administration, Postal Regulatory Commission, 901 New York Avenue NW, Suite 200, Washington, DC 20268–0001. Due to the agency’s virtual status, posting mailed materials to the Commission’s website may be delayed. Accordingly, before mailing materials, it is strongly recommended that individuals contact the dockets clerk by email at dockets@prc.gov or telephone at (202) 789–6847. G. Technical Conference 1. Date and Purpose A technical conference will be held live via WebEx on June 28, 2021, at 11:00 a.m. EDT.7 The technical conference is an informal, off-the-record opportunity to clarify technical issues as well as to identify and request information relevant to evaluating the Postal Service’s proposed changes. See 39 CFR 3020.115(c). The technical conference will be limited to information publicly available in the Request. Any non-public information, including information in non-public Library References attached to the Request, should not be raised at the technical conference. At the technical conference, the Postal Service will make available for questioning its three witnesses whose direct testimony was filed along with the Request and a fourth individual to serve as its institutional witness, who will provide information relevant to the Postal Service’s proposal that is not provided by other Postal Service witnesses. See Request at 2; see also 39 CFR 3020.113(b)(6)–(7), 3020.115(b). The 7 Based upon the pro forma schedule set forth in appendix A of 39 CFR part 3020, this technical conference would be set for day 10, which would be Sunday June 27, 2021; however, this date is adjusted to Monday June 28, 2021, in accordance with 39 CFR 3020.103. E:\FR\FM\25JNN1.SGM 25JNN1 33792 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 120 / Friday, June 25, 2021 / Notices names and topics to which these four individuals are prepared to address are summarized above in Section III.C., Table 1, infra. lotter on DSK11XQN23PROD with NOTICES1 2. How To Livestream the Technical Conference The technical conference will be broadcast to the public via livestream, which will allow the public to view and listen to the technical conference, as it is occurring and after. To view and listen to the livestream, on or after 11:00 a.m. EDT on June 28, 2021, an individual must click on the internet link that will be identified on the Commission’s YouTube Channel, which is available at https:// www.youtube.com/channel/UCbHvKS8CJFT5yNQe4MkTiQ. Individuals do not have to register in advance to access the livestream. Please note that the livestream is a broadcast; therefore, there is a brief delay (several seconds) between the technical conference being captured on camera and being displayed to viewers of the livestream. Additionally, please note that clicking on the livestream link will not allow an individual the opportunity to question the Postal Service’s four witnesses. Details on how to participate in the live WebEx (and have the opportunity to question the Postal Service’s four witnesses) follow. 3. How To Participate in the Technical Conference To participate in this live technical conference and have the opportunity to ask questions of the Postal Service’s four witnesses, an individual need not formally intervene in this docket, but must register in advance as follows. Each individual seeking to participate in the live WebEx using an individual device (e.g., a desktop computer, laptop, tablet, or smart phone) must register by sending an email to N20212registration@prc.gov, with the subject line ‘‘Registration’’ by June 23, 2021. In order to facilitate orderly public participation, this email shall provide the following information: • Your first and last name; • your email address (to receive the WebEx link); • the name(s) of the Postal Service witness(es) you would like to question and/or the topic(s) of your question(s); and • your affiliation (if you are participating in your capacity as an employee, officer, or member of an entity such as a corporation, association, or government agency). The N2021-2registration@prc.gov email address is established solely for the exchange of information relating to VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:38 Jun 24, 2021 Jkt 253001 the logistics of registering for and participating in the technical conference.8 No information related to the substance of the Postal Service’s Request shall be communicated, nor shall any information provided by participants apart from the list identified above be reviewed or considered. Only documents filed with the Commission’s docket system will be considered by the Commission. Before the technical conference, the Commission will email each identified individual a WebEx link, an explanation of how to connect to the technical conference, and information regarding the schedule and procedures to be followed. 4. Availability of Materials and Recording To facilitate discussion of the matters to be explored at the technical conference, the Postal Service shall, if necessary, file with the Commission any materials not already filed in Docket No. N2021–2 (such as PowerPoint presentations or Excel spreadsheets) that the Postal Service expects to present at the technical conference by June 25, 2021. Doing so will foster an orderly discussion of the matters under consideration and facilitate the ability of individuals to access these materials should technical issues arise for any participants during the live WebEx. If feasible, the recording will be available on the Commission’s YouTube Channel at https://www.youtube.com/channel/ UCbHvK-S8CJFT5yNQe4MkTiQ. Participants in the WebEx, by participating, consent to such recording and posting. Information obtained during the technical conference or as a result of the technical conference is not part of the decisional record, unless admitted under the standards of 39 CFR 3010.322. See 39 CFR 3020.115(e). H. How To Intervene (Become a Party to This Proceeding) To become a party to this proceeding, a person or entity must file a notice of intervention by July 1, 2021.9 This filing must clearly and concisely state: The nature and extent of the intervenor’s interest in the issues (including the postal services used), the intervenor’s position on the proposed changes in services (to the extent known), whether or not the intervenor requests a hearing, and whether or not the intervenor intends to actively participate in the 8 Please refer to the Commission’s privacy policy which is available at https://www.prc.gov/privacy. 9 Neither the Public Representative nor the Postal Service must file a notice of intervention; both are automatically deemed parties to this proceeding. See 39 CFR 3010.142(a). PO 00000 Frm 00160 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 hearing. See 39 CFR 3010.142(b). Page one of this filing shall contain the name and full mailing address of no more than two persons who are to receive service, when necessary, of any documents relating to this proceeding. See id. A party may participate in discovery; file testimony and evidence; conduct written examination of witnesses; conduct limited oral crossexamination; file briefs, motions, and objections; and present argument before the Commission or the presiding officer. See id. sections 3010.142(a); 3020.122(e). An opposition to a notice of intervention is due within 3 days after the notice of intervention is filed. See id. section 3010.142(d)(2). I. Discovery 1. Generally Applicable Discovery Procedures Discovery requests may be propounded upon filing a notice of intervention. Discovery that is reasonably calculated to lead to the admissible evidence is allowed. See 39 CFR 3020.116(a). Each party must familiarize themselves with the Commission’s rules appearing in 39 CFR part 3020, including the rules for discovery in N-dockets generally and specific to interrogatories, requests for the production of documents, and requests for admissions.10 No party may propound more than a total of 25 interrogatories (including both initial and follow-up interrogatories) without prior approval by the Commission or presiding officer.11 Each answer to a discovery request is due within 7 days after the discovery request is filed.12 Any motion seeking to be excused from answering any discovery request is due within 3 days after the discovery request is filed. See 39 CFR 3020.105(b)(1). Any response to such motion is due within 2 days after the motion is filed. See id. section 3020.105(b)(2). The Commission expects parties to make judicious use of discovery, objections, and motions practice, and encourages parties to make every effort to confer to resolve disputes informally before bringing disputes to the Commission to resolve. 10 See 39 CFR 3020.116–3020.119. 39 CFR 3020.117(a); Order No. 2080 at 42; see also Docket No. N2021–2, Order Affirming Presiding Officer’s Ruling No. N2021–1/9, May 26, 2021, at 9 (Order No. 5901). 12 See 39 CFR 3020.117(b)(4), 3020.118(b)(1), 3020.119(b)(1). Filing an opposition to a notice of intervention shall not delay this deadline. See 39 CFR 3010.142(d)(3). 11 See E:\FR\FM\25JNN1.SGM 25JNN1 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 120 / Friday, June 25, 2021 / Notices 2. Discovery Deadlines for the Postal Service’s Direct Case All discovery requests regarding the Postal Service’s direct case must be filed by July 15, 2021. All discovery answers by the Postal Service must be filed by July 22, 2021. The parties are urged to initiate discovery promptly, rather than to defer filing requests and answers to the end of the period established by the Commission. J. Rebuttal Case Deadlines A rebuttal case is any evidence and testimony offered to disprove or contradict the evidence and testimony submitted by the Postal Service. A rebuttal case does not include crossexamination of the Postal Service’s witnesses or argument submitted via a brief or statement of position. Any party that intends to file a rebuttal case must file a notice confirming its intent to do so by July 20, 2021.13 Any rebuttal case, consisting of any testimony and all materials in support of the case, must be filed by July 29, 2021. lotter on DSK11XQN23PROD with NOTICES1 K. Surrebuttal Case Deadlines A surrebuttal case is any evidence and testimony offered to disprove or contradict the evidence and testimony submitted by the rebutting party. A surrebuttal case does not include crossexamination of the rebutting party’s witnesses or argument submitted via a brief or statement of position. Any party that intends to file surrebuttal case must obtain the Commission’s prior approval and must bear the burden of demonstrating exceptional circumstances that would warrant granting the motion. See 39 CFR 3020.121(b). Any motion for leave to file a surrebuttal case is due July 30, 2021.14 Any response to such motion is due August 3, 2021.15 Any surrebuttal case, consisting of any testimony and all 13 The pro forma schedule set forth in appendix A of 39 CFR part 3020 lists this deadline as day 37, which would be Saturday July 24, 2021. Consistent with Docket No. N2021–1, this deadline is adjusted to day 33, Tuesday July 20, 2021, so as to provide additional time necessary for the coordination of the technical aspects of the virtual hearing. See Docket No. N2021–1, Presiding Officer’s Ruling Adjusting Procedural Schedule and Modifying PreHearing Filings, May 13, 2021, at 2 (Docket No. N2021–1 POR No. 7). 14 The pro forma schedule set forth in appendix A of 39 CFR part 3020 lists this deadline as day 44, which would be Saturday July 31, 2021. However, this deadline is adjusted to Friday July 30, 2021, so as to provide additional time necessary for the coordination of the technical aspects of the virtual hearing. 15 The pro forma schedule set forth in appendix A of 39 CFR part 3020 lists this deadline as day 46, which would be Monday August 2, 2021. However, this deadline is adjusted to Tuesday August 3, 2021, so as to allow 2 business days to respond to the filing of a motion for leave to file a surrebuttal case. VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:38 Jun 24, 2021 Jkt 253001 materials in support of the case, must be filed by August 5, 2021. L. Hearing Dates The Commission expects that this case will require no more than one or two business days for hearing, but reserves three business days out of an abundance of caution and consistent with the pro forma schedule set forth in appendix A of 39 CFR part 3020. If no party files a notice of intent to file a rebuttal case by July 20, 2021, then the hearing of the Postal Service’s direct case shall begin July 29, 2021, with additional days reserved on July 30, 2021 and August 2, 2021. If any party files a notice of intent to file a rebuttal case by July 20, 2021 but no surrebuttal testimony will be presented, then the hearing of the Postal Service’s direct case shall begin August 5, 2021, with additional days reserved on August 6, 2021, and August 9, 2021. If any party files a notice of intent to file a rebuttal case by July 20, 2021, and the Commission approves the presentation of surrebuttal testimony, then the hearing of the Postal Service’s direct case shall begin August 10, 2021, and the hearing of the surrebuttal case shall end August 12, 2021. M. Presentation of Evidence and Testimony Evidence and testimony shall be in writing and may be accompanied by a trial brief or legal memoranda. Id. section 3020.122(e)(1). Whenever possible and particularly for factual or statistical evidence, written crossexamination will be used in lieu of oral cross-examination. Id. section 3020.122(e)(2). Oral cross-examination will be allowed to clarify written crossexamination and/or to test assumptions, conclusions, or other opinion evidence. Id. section 3020.122(e)(3). Assuming that no rebuttal case is filed, any party that intends to conduct oral crossexamination shall file a notice of intent to do so by July 22, 2021.16 The notice must include an estimate of the amount of time requested for each witness. In lieu of submitting hard copy documents to the Commission as contemplated by 39 CFR 3020.122(e)(2), each party shall file a single document titled ‘‘Notice of Designations’’ containing a list for each witness that identifies the materials to be designated 16 Consistent with the necessary adjustments made in Docket No. N2021–1 to conduct a virtual hearing, the Commission adjusts the timeframe contemplated by 39 CFR 3020.122(e)(3) and instead sets this deadline as 7 days before the beginning of the virtual hearing (assuming that no rebuttal case is filed). PO 00000 Frm 00161 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 33793 (without the responses). The filing party shall arrange its list for each witness in alphabetical order by the name of the party propounding the interrogatory followed by numerical order of the interrogatory. For example: Designations for Witness One ABC/USPS–T1–1 ABC/USPS–T1–3 DEF/USPS–T1–1 GHI/USPS–T1–3 JKL/USPS–T1–2 Designations for Witness Two DEF/USPS–T2–4 GHI/USPS–T2–2 Assuming that no rebuttal case is filed, each party shall file its Notice of Designations by July 23, 2021. Assuming that no rebuttal case is filed, on July 27, 2021, the Postal Service shall file a ‘‘Notice of Designated Materials’’ identifying any corrections to the testimony or designated materials for each witness sponsored by the Postal Service. Attached to that notice shall be a single Adobe PDF file that contains, in order: The witness’s testimony (with any corrections highlighted); identification of any library references sponsored by the witness; and the witness’s designated written responses in alphabetical order by the name of the party propounding the interrogatory followed by numerical order of the interrogatory (with any corrections to the responses highlighted). N. Presentation of Argument 1. General Procedures Any person that has intervened in Docket No. N2021–2 (and thereby formally became a party to this proceeding) may submit written argument by filing a brief or a statement of position; they also may request to present oral argument at the hearing. See 39 CFR 3020.123, see also 39 CFR 3010.142(a). Any person that has not intervened in Docket No. N2021–2 may submit written argument by filing a statement of position. See 39 CFR 3020.123(g), see also 39 CFR 3010.142(a). 2. Presentation of Written Argument A brief is a written document that addresses relevant legal and evidentiary issues for the Commission to consider and must adhere to the requirements of 39 CFR 3020.123(a)–(f). A statement of position is a less formal version of a brief that describes the filer’s position on the Request and the information on the existing record in support of that position. See 39 CFR 3020.123(g). E:\FR\FM\25JNN1.SGM 25JNN1 33794 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 120 / Friday, June 25, 2021 / Notices a. Briefing Deadlines Assuming that no rebuttal case is filed, initial briefs are due August 9, 2021, and reply briefs are due August 16, 2021. If any party files a notice confirming its intent to file a rebuttal case by July 20, 2021, then the briefing schedule may be revised. b. Deadline for Statement of Position Any interested person, including anyone that has not filed a notice of intervention and become a party to this proceeding, may file a statement of position. See 39 CFR 3020.123(g), see also 39 CFR 3010.142(a). A statement of position is limited to the existing record and may not include any new evidentiary material. See 39 CFR 3020.123(g). Filings styled as a brief or comments, conforming with the content and timing requirements, shall be deemed statements of positions. Any statement of position is due August 9, 2021. 3. Request To Present Oral Argument Oral argument has not historically been part of N-cases; the Commission would only grant a request to present oral argument upon an appropriate showing of need by the presenting party. See Order No. 2080 at 53. Assuming that no rebuttal case is filed, any party may file a request to present oral argument by July 22, 2021. O. The Commission’s Advisory Opinion Unless there is a determination of good cause for extension, the Commission shall issue its advisory opinion within 90 days of the filing of the Request. See 39 CFR 3020.102(a). Therefore, absent a determination of good cause for extension, the Commission shall issue its advisory opinion in this proceeding by September 15, 2021. ‘‘The opinion shall be in writing and shall include a certification by each Commissioner agreeing with the opinion that in his [or her] judgment the opinion conforms to the policies established under [title 39, United States Code].’’ 39 U.S.C. 3661(c). The advisory opinion shall address the specific changes proposed by the Postal Service in the nature of postal services. See 39 CFR 3020.102(b). P. Public Representative Pursuant to 39 U.S.C. 3661(c), Mallory L. Smith shall continue to serve as an officer of the Commission (Public Representative) to represent the interests of the general public in this proceeding. See Order No. 5900 at 3, 4. V. Ordering Paragraphs It is ordered: 1. The procedural schedule for this proceeding is set forth below the signature of this Order. 2. Pursuant to 39 CFR 3010.106 and 3020.122(b), the Commission appoints Commissioner Ann C. Fisher to serve as presiding officer in Docket No. N2021– 2, effective immediately. 3. Commissioner Fisher is authorized to propound formal discovery requests upon any party, at her discretion. The numerical limitation on interrogatories appearing in 39 CFR 3020.117(a) shall not apply to the Presiding Officer. 4. Commissioner Fisher is authorized to rule on procedural issues such as motions for late acceptance and discovery-related matters such as motions to be excused from answering discovery requests. 5. Commissioner Fisher is authorized to make other rulings in this Docket not otherwise specifically reserved to the Commission according to 39 CFR 3020 and 3010.106. 6. Pursuant to 39 U.S.C. 3661(c), Mallory L. Smith shall continue to serve as an officer of the Commission (Public Representative) to represent the interests of the general public in this proceeding. 7. The Secretary shall arrange for publication of this order in the Federal Register. By the Commission. Mallory Smith, Federal Register Liaison. PROCEDURAL SCHEDULE FOR DOCKET NO. N2021–2 [Established by the Commission, June 21, 2021] Technical Conference Dates Deadline to Email N2021-2registration@prc.gov to Register to Participate in the Live Technical Conference via WebEx. Filing of the Postal Service’s Materials for the Technical Conference ........................................................ Technical Conference (live via WebEx) ....................................................................................................... June 23, 2021. June 25, 2021. June 28, 2021, at 11:00 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time. Intervention Deadline Filing of Notice of Intervention ...................................................................................................................... July 1, 2021. Discovery Deadlines for the Postal Service’s Direct Case Filing of Discovery Requests ........................................................................................................................ Filing of the Postal Service’s Answers to Discovery .................................................................................... July 15, 2021. July 22, 2021. Deadlines in Preparation for Hearing (assuming no rebuttal case) lotter on DSK11XQN23PROD with NOTICES1 Filing Filing Filing Filing of of of of Notice Confirming Intent to Oral Conduct Cross-Examination ....................................................... Request to Present Oral Argument ................................................................................................ Notice of Designations .................................................................................................................... Notices of Designated Materials ..................................................................................................... July July July July 22, 22, 23, 27, 2021. 2021. 2021. 2021. Rebuttal Case Deadlines (if applicable) Filing of Notice Confirming Intent to File a Rebuttal Case ........................................................................... Filing of Rebuttal Case ................................................................................................................................. July 20, 2021. July 29, 2021. Surrebuttal Case Deadlines (if applicable) Filing of Motion for Leave to File Surrebuttal Case ..................................................................................... VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:38 Jun 24, 2021 Jkt 253001 PO 00000 Frm 00162 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\25JNN1.SGM July 30, 2021. 25JNN1 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 120 / Friday, June 25, 2021 / Notices 33795 PROCEDURAL SCHEDULE FOR DOCKET NO. N2021–2—Continued [Established by the Commission, June 21, 2021] Filing of Response to Motion for Leave to File Surrebuttal Case ................................................................ Filing of Surrebuttal Case (if authorized) ...................................................................................................... August 3, 2021. August 5, 2021. Hearing Dates Hearings (with no Rebuttal Case) ................................................................................................................ Hearings (with Rebuttal Case, but no authorized Surrebuttal Case) ........................................................... Hearings (with Rebuttal Case and authorized Surrebuttal Case) ................................................................ July 29 to 30 and August 2, 2021. August 5, 6 and 9, 2021. August 10 to 12, 2021. Briefing Deadlines Filing of Initial Briefs (with no Rebuttal Case) .............................................................................................. Filing of Reply Briefs (with no Rebuttal Case) ............................................................................................. August 9, 2021. August 16, 2021. Statement of Position Deadline Filing of Statement of Position (with no Rebuttal Case) .............................................................................. August 9, 2021. Advisory Opinion Deadline Filing of Advisory Opinion (absent determination of good cause for extension) ......................................... September 15, 2021. lotter on DSK11XQN23PROD with NOTICES1 BILLING CODE 7710–FW–P VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:38 Jun 24, 2021 Jkt 253001 PO 00000 Frm 00163 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\25JNN1.SGM 25JNN1 33796 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 120 / Friday, June 25, 2021 / Notices Docket N2021-2 Template to Attach to Motion for Access to Non-public Material Protective Conditions Statement The Postal Service requests confidential treatment of non-public materials identified as ____ (non-confidential description of non-public materials) (hereinafter "these materials") in Commission Docket No. N2021-2. ____ (name of participant filing motion) (hereinafter "the movant") requests access to these materials related to Commission Docket No. N2021-2 (hereinafter "this matter''). The movant has provided to each person seeking access to these materials: o This Protective Conditions Statement; o The Certification to Comply with Protective Conditions; o The Certification of Compliance with Protective Conditions and Termination of Access; and o The Commission's rules applicable to access to non-public materials filed in Commission proceedings (subpart C of part 3011 of the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations). Each person (and any individual working on behalf of that person) seeking access to these materials has executed a Certification to Comply with Protective Conditions by signing in ink or by typing Isl before his or her name in the signature block. The movant attaches the Protective Conditions Statement and the executed Certification(s) to Comply with Protective Conditions to the motion for access filed with the Commission. The movant and each person seeking access to these materials agree to comply with the following protective conditions: 1. In accordance with 39 CFR 3011.303, the Commission may impose sanctions on any person who violates these protective conditions, the persons or entities on whose behalf the person was acting, or both. 2. In accordance with 39 CFR 3011.300(b), no person involved in competitive decision-making for any individual or entity that might gain competitive advantage from using these materials shall be granted access to these materials. Involved in competitive decision-making includes consulting on marketing or advertising strategies, structuring and composition of bids, offers or proposals. It does not include rendering legal advice or performing other services that are not directly in furtherance of activities VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:38 Jun 24, 2021 Jkt 253001 PO 00000 Frm 00164 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4725 E:\FR\FM\25JNN1.SGM 25JNN1 EN25JN21.005</GPH> lotter on DSK11XQN23PROD with NOTICES1 pricing, product research and development, product design, or the competitive Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 120 / Friday, June 25, 2021 / Notices 33797 in competition with an individual or entity having a proprietary interest in the protected material. 3. In accordance with 39 CFR 3011.302(a), a person granted access to these materials may not disseminate these materials in whole or in part to any person not allowed access pursuant to 39 CFR 3011.300(a) (Commission and court personnel) or 3011.301 (other persons granted access by Commission order) except in compliance with: a. Specific Commission order, b. Subpart B of 39 CFR 3011 (procedure for filing these materials in Commission proceedings), or c. 39 CFR 3011.305 (production of these materials in a court or other administrative proceeding). 4. In accordance with 39 CFR 3011.302(b) and (c}, all persons granted access to these materials: a. Must use these materials only related to this matter; and b. Must protect these materials from any person not authorized to obtain access under 39 CFR 3011.300 or 3011.301 by using the same degree of care, but no less than a reasonable degree of care, to prevent the unauthorized disclosure of these materials as those persons, in the ordinary course of business, would be expected to use to protect their own proprietary material or trade secrets and other internal, confidential, commercially sensitive, and privileged information. 5. The duties of each person granted access to these materials apply to all: a. Disclosures or duplications of these materials in writing, orally, electronically, or otherwise, by any means, format, or medium; 6. b. Excerpts from, parts of, or the entirety of these materials; c. Written materials that quote or contain these materials; and d. Revised, amended, or supplemental versions of these materials. All copies of these materials will be clearly marked as "Confidential" and bear the name of the person granted access. 7. Immediately after access has terminated pursuant to 39 CFR 3011.304(a)(1 ), copy of these materials must execute the Certification of Compliance with Protective Conditions and Termination of Access. In compliance with 39 CFR 3011.304(a)(2}, the VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:38 Jun 24, 2021 Jkt 253001 PO 00000 Frm 00165 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4725 E:\FR\FM\25JNN1.SGM 25JNN1 EN25JN21.006</GPH> lotter on DSK11XQN23PROD with NOTICES1 each person (and any individual working on behalf of that person) who has obtained a 33798 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 120 / Friday, June 25, 2021 / Notices movant will attach the executed Certification(s) of Compliance with Protective Conditions and Termination of Access to the notice of termination of access filed with the Commission. 8. Each person granted access to these materials consents to these or such other conditions as the Commission may approve. Respectfully submitted, Isl (signature of representative) (print name of representative) (address line 1 of representative) (address line 2 of representative) (telephone number of representative) (e-mail address of representative) Attorney I Non-Attorney Representative for (choose the appropriate response) (name of the movant) You may delete the instructional text to complete this form. This form may be filed as an attachment to the motion for access to non-public materials under 39 CFR 3011.301 (b)(S). Certification To Comply With Protective Conditions The Postal Service requests confidential treatment of non-public materials identified as _ _ _ _ (non-confidential description of non-public materials) (hereinafter "these materials") filed in Commission Docket No. N2021-2. _ _ _ _ (name of participant filing motion) requests that the Commission grant me access to these materials to use related to Docket No. N2021-2 (hereinafter "this matter''). VerDate Sep<11>2014 o I have read and understand the Protective Conditions Statement and this Certification to Comply with Protective Conditions; o I am eligible to receive access to these materials because I am not involved in competitive decision-making for any individual or entity that might gain competitive advantage from using these materials; and o I will comply with all protective conditions established by the Commission. 18:38 Jun 24, 2021 Jkt 253001 PO 00000 Frm 00166 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4725 E:\FR\FM\25JNN1.SGM 25JNN1 EN25JN21.007</GPH> lotter on DSK11XQN23PROD with NOTICES1 I certify that: Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 120 / Friday, June 25, 2021 / Notices 33799 Isl (signature of individual receiving access) (print name of individual receiving access) (title of individual receiving access) (employer of individual receiving access) (name of the participant filing the motion) (date) You may delete the instructional text to complete this form. This form may be filed as an attachment to the motion for access to non-public materials under 39 CFR 3011.301 (b)(6). BILLING CODE 7710–FW–C SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION [SEC File No. 270–451, OMB Control No. 3235–0509] Proposed Collection; Comment Request Upon Written Request, Copies Available From: Securities and Exchange Commission, Office of FOIA Services, 100 F Street NE, Washington, DC 20549–2736 lotter on DSK11XQN23PROD with NOTICES1 Extension: Rule 301 of Regulation ATS Notice is hereby given that pursuant to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (‘‘PRA’’) (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.), the Securities and Exchange Commission (‘‘Commission’’) is soliciting comments on the existing collection of information provided for in Rule 301 of Regulation ATS (17 CFR 242.301) under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (15 U.S.C. 78a et seq.) (‘‘Exchange Act’’). The Commission plans to submit this existing collection of information to the Office of Management and Budget (‘‘OMB’’) for extension and approval. Regulation ATS provides a regulatory structure for alternative trading systems. Rule 301 of Regulation ATS contains certain record keeping and reporting requirements, as well as additional obligations that apply only to alternative trading systems with significant volume. The Rule requires all alternative trading systems that wish to comply with Regulation ATS to file an initial operations report on Form ATS. Alternative trading systems are also required to supply updates on Form VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:38 Jun 24, 2021 Jkt 253001 ATS to the Commission describing material changes to the system, file quarterly transaction reports on Form ATS–R, and file cessation of operations reports on Form ATS. An alternative trading system with significant volume is required to comply with requirements for fair access and systems capacity, integrity, and security. Rule 301 also imposes certain requirements pertaining to written safeguards and procedures to protect subscribers’ confidential trading information. The Commission staff estimates that entities subject to the requirements of Rule 301 will spend a total of approximately 2,687 hours a year to comply with the Rule. Written comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Commission, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the Commission’s estimates of the burden of the proposed collection of information; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology. Consideration will be given to comments and suggestions submitted in writing within 60 days of this publication. An agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, a collection of information under the PRA unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number. Please direct your written comments to: David Bottom, Director/Chief Information Officer, Securities and Exchange Commission, c/o Cynthia PO 00000 Frm 00167 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Roscoe, 100 F Street NE, Washington, DC 20549, or send an email to: PRA_ Mailbox@sec.gov. Dated: June 21, 2021. J. Matthew DeLesDernier, Assistant Secretary. [FR Doc. 2021–13508 Filed 6–24–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 8011–01–P SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION [SEC File No. 270–346, OMB Control No. 3235–0392] Proposed Collection; Comment Request Upon Written Request, Copies Available From: Securities and Exchange Commission, Office of FOIA Services, 100 F Street NE, Washington, DC 20549–2736 Extension: Rule 15g–3 Notice is hereby given that pursuant to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (‘‘PRA’’) (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.), the Securities and Exchange Commission (‘‘Commission’’) is soliciting comments on the existing collection of information provided for in Rule 15g–3—Broker or dealer disclosure of quotations and other information relating to the penny stock market (17 CFR 240.15g–3) under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (15 U.S.C. 78a et seq.). The Commission plans to submit this existing collection of information to the Office of Management and Budget (‘‘OMB’’) for extension and approval. Rule 15g–3 requires that brokers and dealers disclose to customers current quotation prices or similar market information in connection with transactions in penny stocks. The E:\FR\FM\25JNN1.SGM 25JNN1 EN25JN21.008</GPH> [FR Doc. 2021–13515 Filed 6–24–21; 8:45 am]

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 120 (Friday, June 25, 2021)]
[Notices]
[Pages 33787-33799]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-13515]


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POSTAL REGULATORY COMMISSION

[Docket No. N2021-2; Order No. 5920]


Service Standard Changes

AGENCY: Postal Regulatory Commission.

ACTION: Notice.

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SUMMARY: The Commission is acknowledging a recently-filed Postal 
Service request for an advisory opinion on the service standards for 
First-Class Mail Package Service (FCPS). This document invites public 
comments on the request and addresses several related procedural steps.

DATES: Notices of intervention are due: July 1, 2021; Live WebEx 
Technical Conference: June 28, 2021, at 11:00 a.m., Eastern Daylight 
Time, Virtual.

ADDRESSES: Submit notices of intervention electronically via the 
Commission's Filing Online system at http://www.prc.gov. Persons 
interested in intervening who cannot submit their views electronically 
should contact the person identified in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION 
CONTACT: David A. Trissell, General Counsel, at 202-789-6820.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Table of Contents

I. Introduction
II. Pre-Filing Issues
III. The Request
IV. Initial Administrative Actions
V. Ordering Paragraphs

I. Introduction

    On June 17, 2021, the Postal Service filed a request for an 
advisory opinion from the Commission regarding planned changes to the 
service standards for First-Class Package Service (FCPS).\1\ The 
intended effective date of the Postal Service's planned changes is no 
earlier than October 1, 2021. Request at 1. The Request was filed 
pursuant to 39 U.S.C. 3661 and 39 CFR part 3020. Before issuing its 
advisory opinion, the Commission shall accord an opportunity for a 
formal, on-the-record hearing pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 556 and 557. 39 
U.S.C. 3661(c). This Order provides information on the Postal Service's 
planned changes, explains and establishes the process for the on-the-
record hearing, and lays out the procedural schedule to be followed in 
this case.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ United States Postal Service Request for an Advisory Opinion 
on Changes in the Nature of Postal Services, June 17, 2021 
(Request). FCPS ``is a mailing service available for lightweight 
packages--for retail mailers, the weight of the package cannot 
exceed 13 ounces; for commercial mailers, the weight of the package 
cannot exceed 15.999 ounces.'' Notice of Pre-Filing Conference, May 
25, 2021, at 1, n.1 (Notice).
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II. Pre-Filing Issues

    On March 23, 2021, the Postal Service published a 10-year strategic 
plan announcing potential changes intended to achieve financial 
stability and service excellence.\2\ In connection with this 
publication, on May 25, 2021, the Postal Service also filed a notice of 
its intent to conduct a pre-filing conference regarding its proposed 
changes to the service standards for FCPS, which would ``generally 
affect service on a nationwide or substantially nationwide basis.'' 
Notice at 1 (quoting 39 U.S.C. 3661(b)).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \2\ See United States Postal Service, Delivering for America: 
Our Vision and Ten-Year Plan to Achieve Financial Sustainability and 
Service Excellence, March 23, 2021, at 3, available at https://about.usps.com/what/strategic-plans/delivering-for-america/assets/USPS_Delivering-For-America.pdf (Postal Service's Strategic Plan). 
Further information related to the Postal Service's Strategic Plan 
is available at https://about.usps.com/what/strategic-plans/delivering-for-america/.
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    On May 26, 2021, the Commission issued Order No. 5900, which 
established Docket No. N2021-2 to consider the Postal Service's 
proposed changes, notified the public concerning the Postal Service's 
pre-filing conference, and appointed a Public Representative.\3\ Due to 
the COVID-19 pandemic, the Postal Service held its pre-filing 
conference virtually on June 8, 2021, from 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. 
Eastern Daylight Time (EDT). See Request at 2. The Postal Service 
asserts that it completed the pre-filing requirements appearing in 39 
CFR 3020.111 and certifies that it has made a good faith effort to 
address concerns of interested persons about the Postal Service's 
proposal raised at the pre-filing conference. See id.
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    \3\ Notice and Order Concerning the Postal Service's Pre-Filing 
Conference, May 26, 2021, at 1-4 (Order No. 5900).
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III. The Request

A. The Postal Service's Planned Changes

    The Postal Service states that the existing service standards for 
FCPS mirror the existing service standards applied to Market Dominant 
Single-Piece First-Class Mail (letter- and flat-shaped mailpieces). See 
Request at 3. The Postal Service's proposed changes for FCPS are 
similar to the changes proposed for Market Dominant First-Class Mail in 
Docket N2021-1, because the FCPS service standards would also be 
adjusted to account for additional drive time between origin and 
destination processing facilities. See Notice at 2; see also Request at 
3. However, the actual service standards that the Postal Service 
proposes to apply to FCPS would differ from those proposed for First-
Class Mail. See id. The Postal Service plans for its proposed changes 
for FCPS to become effective no earlier than October 1, 2021. See 
Request at 1.
    The Postal Service proposes to expand the scope of the existing 2-
Day service standard applied to FCPS. See Request at 3. For FCPS within 
the contiguous United States, the Postal Service proposes to narrow the 
scope of the existing 3-Day service standard; instead 4-Day and 5-Day 
service standards would apply to certain FCPS traveling longer 
distances between origin and destination. See id. Overall for FCPS 
volume within the contiguous United States, the Postal Service projects 
that approximately 23.6 percent would be subject to the proposed 2-Day 
service standard; 44.5 percent would be subject to the proposed 3-Day 
service standard; approximately 17.3 percent would be subject to the 
proposed 4-Day service standard; and approximately 14.6 percent would 
be subject to the proposed 5-Day service standard. See id. at 4, Figure 
1. The Postal Service projects that pharmaceutical volume would 
experience less impact from the proposed changes than other FCPS 
volume, estimating that almost all pharmaceutical volume currently 
subject to the 2-Day service standard and the majority of 
pharmaceutical volume currently subject to the 3-Day service standard 
would remain subject to those respective service standards. See id. at 
5.
    Specifically, the Postal Service proposes to apply the following 
service standards to FCPS.

[[Page 33788]]

[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TN25JN21.002

B. The Postal Service's Position

    The Postal Service states that attempting to meet the existing 
service standards has led to high costs, transportation inefficiencies, 
and difficulties in providing reliable and consistent service 
performance. See Request at 6. The Postal Service explains that 
transporting FCPS by surface (trucks) is more reliable and cost-
effective than air transportation. See id. The Postal Service asserts 
that the proposed changes would allow the Postal Service to use surface 
rather than air transportation for more FCPS between additional Postal 
Service origin and destination processing facilities (OD Pairs). See 
id. The Postal Service states that the proposed changes could generate 
a net improvement to the Postal Service's finances of approximately $55 
million annually, when considering transportation cost savings and the 
Postal Service's estimate that the proposal would not materially impact 
FCPS volumes. See id. at 8.
    The Postal Service asserts that implementing the proposed changes 
would enable it to: Provide more reliable and consistent service 
performance, improve its ability to run according to its operating 
plans and optimize its surface transportation network, increase its use 
of more cost-effective air carriers for volume that will continue to be 
transported by air (such as volume destined for non-contiguous areas), 
achieve significant cost savings due to the creation of a more 
efficient transportation network, and implement future operational 
benefits. See id. at 6-9. It adds that the proposed changes are a key 
component of the Postal Service's Strategic Plan, intended to achieve 
financial stability and service excellence. See id. at 9.
    Further, the Postal Service asserts that the proposed changes would 
conform to the policies of title 39, United States Code. See id. at 9-
12. The Postal Service discusses how the proposed changes would 
continue to satisfy the universal service provisions appearing in 39 
U.S.C. 101, 403, and 3661(a) under the proposed service standards.\4\ 
The Postal Service also asserts that the proposed changes would not 
impair compliance with the policies of 39 U.S.C. 3633, which govern the 
financial performance of competitive products. See Request at 11-12.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \4\ See id. at 9-11. The Postal Service observes that the 
Commission has concluded that the universal service obligation 
extends to competitive products. See id. at 9, n.1 (citing Postal 
Regulatory Commission, Report on Universal Postal Service and the 
Postal Monopoly, 25, December 19, 2008, available at https://www.prc.gov/docs/61/61628/USO%20Report.pdf).

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[[Page 33789]]

C. The Postal Service's Direct Case

    The Postal Service is required to file its direct case along with 
the Request. See 39 CFR 3020.114. The Postal Service's direct case 
includes all of the prepared evidence and testimony upon which the 
Postal Service proposes to rely on in order to establish that its 
proposal accords with and conforms to the policies of title 39, United 
States Code. See id. The Postal Service provides the direct testimony 
of three witnesses and identifies a fourth individual to serve as its 
institutional witness and provide information relevant to the Postal 
Service's proposal that is not provided by other Postal Service 
witnesses.
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TN25JN21.003

    Additionally, the Postal Service filed seven library references, 
four of which are available to the public and three of which are 
designated as non-public material.

[[Page 33790]]

[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TN25JN21.004

IV. Initial Administrative Actions

A. General Procedures

    The procedural rules in 39 CFR part 3020 apply to Docket No. N2021-
2. Before issuing its advisory opinion, the Commission shall accord an 
opportunity for a formal, on-the-record hearing pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 
556 and 557. 39 U.S.C. 3661(c). The Commission will sit en banc for 
Docket No. N2021-2. See 39 CFR 3020.122(b). Due to the COVID-19 
pandemic, the Commission is conducting all business, including any 
hearing or public meeting for Docket No. N2021-2 virtually and not in 
person.

B. Scope

    Docket No. N2021-2 is limited in scope to the specific changes 
proposed by the Postal Service in its Request. See 39 CFR 3020.102(b). 
To the extent that participants raise alternative proposals and present 
reasons why those alternatives may be superior to the Postal Service's 
proposal, the Commission would interpret such discussion as critiquing 
the specific changes proposed by the Postal Service in its Request.\5\ 
However, the Commission would not evaluate or opine on the merits of 
such alternative proposals in its advisory opinion. See Order No. 2080 
at 18. Pursuant to its discretion, the Commission may undertake 
evaluation of alternatives or other issues raised by participants in 
separate proceedings (such as special studies or public inquires). See 
39 CFR 3020.102(b). Moreover, any interested person may petition the 
Commission to initiate a separate proceeding (such as a rulemaking or 
public inquiry) at any time. See 39 CFR 3010.201(b) (initiation of 
notice and comment proceedings).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \5\ See Docket No. RM2012-4, Order Adopting Amended Rules of 
Procedure for Nature of Service Proceedings Under 39 U.S.C. 3661, 
May 20, 2014, at 18 (Order No. 2080).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

C. Designation of Presiding Officer

    Pursuant to 39 CFR 3010.106 and 3020.122(b), the Commission 
appoints Commissioner Ann C. Fisher to serve as presiding officer in 
Docket No. N2021-2, effective immediately. In addition to the authority 
delegated to the presiding officer under 39 CFR 3010.106(c), the 
Commission expands the presiding officer's authority to allow her to 
propound formal discovery requests upon any party, at her discretion. 
The numerical limitation on interrogatories appearing in 39 CFR 
3020.117(a) shall not apply to the presiding officer. The Commission 
also authorizes Commissioner Fisher to rule on procedural issues such 
as motions for late acceptance and discovery-related matters such as 
motions to be excused from answering discovery requests. Commissioner 
Fisher shall have authority to issue any ruling in this docket not 
otherwise specifically reserved to the Commission by 39 CFR 3020 and 
3010.106.

D. Procedural Schedule

    The Commission establishes a procedural schedule, which appears 
below the signature of this Order as Attachment 1. See 39 CFR 3010.151, 
3020.110; see also 39 CFR part 3020 Appendix A. These dates may be 
changed only if good cause is shown, if the Commission later determines 
that the Request is incomplete, if the Commission determines that the 
Postal Service has significantly modified the Request, or for other 
reasons as determined by the Commission. See 39 CFR 3020.110(b) and 
(c).

[[Page 33791]]

E. How To Access Material Filed in This Proceeding

1. Using the Commission's Website
    The public portions of the Postal Service's filing are available 
for review on the Commission's website (http://www.prc.gov). The Postal 
Service's electronic filing of the Request and prepared direct evidence 
effectively serves the persons who participated in the pre-filing 
conference. See 39 CFR 3020.104. Other material filed in this 
proceeding will be available for review on the Commission's website, 
unless the information contained therein is subject to an application 
for non-public treatment.
2. Using Methods Other Than the Commission's Website
    The Postal Service must serve hard copies of its Request and 
prepared direct evidence ``only upon those persons who have notified 
the Postal Service, in writing, during the pre-filing conference(s), 
that they do not have access to the Commission's website.'' 39 CFR 
3020.104. If you demonstrate that you are unable to effectively use the 
Commission's Filing Online system or are unable to access the internet, 
then the Secretary of the Commission will serve material filed in 
Docket No. N2021-2 upon you via First-Class Mail. See 39 CFR 
3010.127(b) and (c). You may request physical service by mailing a 
document demonstrating your need to the Office of Secretary and 
Administration, Postal Regulatory Commission, 901 New York Avenue NW, 
Suite 200, Washington, DC 20268-0001. Service may be delayed due to the 
impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Pursuant to 39 CFR 3010.127(c), the 
Secretary shall maintain a service list identifying no more than two 
individuals designated for physical service of documents for each party 
intervening in this proceeding. Accordingly, each party must ensure 
that its listing is accurate and should promptly notify the Secretary 
of any errors or changes. See 39 CFR 3010.127(c).
3. Non-Public Material
    The Commission's rules on how to file and access non-public 
material appear in 39 CFR part 3011. Each individual seeking non-public 
access must familiarize themselves with these provisions, including the 
rules governing eligibility for access; non-dissemination, use, and 
care of the non-public material; sanctions for violations of protective 
conditions; and how to terminate or amend access.\6\ Any person seeking 
access to non-public material must file a motion with the Commission 
containing the information required by 39 CFR 3011.301(b)(1)-(4). Each 
motion must attach a description of the protective conditions and a 
certification to comply with protective conditions executed by each 
person or entity (and each individual working on behalf of the person 
or entity) seeking access. 39 CFR 3011.301(b)(5)-(6). To facilitate 
compliance with 39 CFR 3011.301(b)(5)-(6), a template Protective 
Conditions Statement and Certification to Comply with Protective 
Conditions appears below the signature of this Order as Attachment 2, 
for completion and attachment to a motion for access. See 39 CFR part 
3011 subpart C, appendix A. Persons seeking access to non-public 
material are advised that actual notice provided to the Postal Service 
pursuant to 39 CFR 3011.301(b)(4) will expedite resolution of the 
motion, particularly if the motion for access is uncontested by the 
Postal Service.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \6\ See 39 CFR 3011.300, 3011.302-304.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Non-public information must be redacted from filings submitted 
through the Commission's website; instead, non-public information must 
be filed under seal as required by 39 CFR part 3011 subpart B.

F. How To File Material in This Proceeding

1. Using the Commission's Filing Online System
    Except as provided in 39 CFR 3010.120(a), all material filed with 
the Commission shall be submitted in electronic format using the Filing 
Online system, which is available over the internet through the 
Commission's website. The Commission's website accepts filings during 
the Commission's regular business hours, which are from 8:00 a.m. 
through 4:30 p.m. EDT, except for Saturdays, Sundays, and Federal 
holidays. A guide to using the Filing Online system, including how to 
create an account, is available at https://www.prc.gov/how-to-participate. If you have questions about how to use the Filing Online 
system, please contact the dockets clerk by email at [email protected] or 
telephone at (202) 789-6847. Please be advised that the dockets clerk 
can only answer procedural questions but may not provide legal advice 
or recommendations.
2. Using Methods Other Than the Commission's Filing Online System
    Material may be filed using a method other than the Commission's 
website only if at least one of the following exceptions applies:
     The material cannot reasonably be converted to electronic 
format,
     The material contains non-public information (see 39 CFR 
part 3011),
     The filer is unable to effectively use the Commission's 
Filing Online system and the document is 10 pages or fewer, or
     The Secretary has approved an exception to the 
requirements to use the Commission's Filing Online system based on a 
showing of good cause. 39 CFR 3010.120(a).
    Material subject to these exceptions may be filed by mail to the 
Office of Secretary and Administration, Postal Regulatory Commission, 
901 New York Avenue NW, Suite 200, Washington, DC 20268-0001. Due to 
the agency's virtual status, posting mailed materials to the 
Commission's website may be delayed. Accordingly, before mailing 
materials, it is strongly recommended that individuals contact the 
dockets clerk by email at [email protected] or telephone at (202) 789-
6847.

G. Technical Conference

1. Date and Purpose
    A technical conference will be held live via WebEx on June 28, 
2021, at 11:00 a.m. EDT.\7\ The technical conference is an informal, 
off-the-record opportunity to clarify technical issues as well as to 
identify and request information relevant to evaluating the Postal 
Service's proposed changes. See 39 CFR 3020.115(c). The technical 
conference will be limited to information publicly available in the 
Request. Any non-public information, including information in non-
public Library References attached to the Request, should not be raised 
at the technical conference. At the technical conference, the Postal 
Service will make available for questioning its three witnesses whose 
direct testimony was filed along with the Request and a fourth 
individual to serve as its institutional witness, who will provide 
information relevant to the Postal Service's proposal that is not 
provided by other Postal Service witnesses. See Request at 2; see also 
39 CFR 3020.113(b)(6)-(7), 3020.115(b). The

[[Page 33792]]

names and topics to which these four individuals are prepared to 
address are summarized above in Section III.C., Table 1, infra.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \7\ Based upon the pro forma schedule set forth in appendix A of 
39 CFR part 3020, this technical conference would be set for day 10, 
which would be Sunday June 27, 2021; however, this date is adjusted 
to Monday June 28, 2021, in accordance with 39 CFR 3020.103.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

2. How To Livestream the Technical Conference
    The technical conference will be broadcast to the public via 
livestream, which will allow the public to view and listen to the 
technical conference, as it is occurring and after. To view and listen 
to the livestream, on or after 11:00 a.m. EDT on June 28, 2021, an 
individual must click on the internet link that will be identified on 
the Commission's YouTube Channel, which is available at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCbHvK-S8CJFT5yNQe4MkTiQ. Individuals do not 
have to register in advance to access the livestream. Please note that 
the livestream is a broadcast; therefore, there is a brief delay 
(several seconds) between the technical conference being captured on 
camera and being displayed to viewers of the livestream. Additionally, 
please note that clicking on the livestream link will not allow an 
individual the opportunity to question the Postal Service's four 
witnesses. Details on how to participate in the live WebEx (and have 
the opportunity to question the Postal Service's four witnesses) 
follow.
3. How To Participate in the Technical Conference
    To participate in this live technical conference and have the 
opportunity to ask questions of the Postal Service's four witnesses, an 
individual need not formally intervene in this docket, but must 
register in advance as follows. Each individual seeking to participate 
in the live WebEx using an individual device (e.g., a desktop computer, 
laptop, tablet, or smart phone) must register by sending an email to 
[email protected], with the subject line ``Registration'' by 
June 23, 2021. In order to facilitate orderly public participation, 
this email shall provide the following information:
     Your first and last name;
     your email address (to receive the WebEx link);
     the name(s) of the Postal Service witness(es) you would 
like to question and/or the topic(s) of your question(s); and
     your affiliation (if you are participating in your 
capacity as an employee, officer, or member of an entity such as a 
corporation, association, or government agency).
    The [email protected] email address is established solely 
for the exchange of information relating to the logistics of 
registering for and participating in the technical conference.\8\ No 
information related to the substance of the Postal Service's Request 
shall be communicated, nor shall any information provided by 
participants apart from the list identified above be reviewed or 
considered. Only documents filed with the Commission's docket system 
will be considered by the Commission. Before the technical conference, 
the Commission will email each identified individual a WebEx link, an 
explanation of how to connect to the technical conference, and 
information regarding the schedule and procedures to be followed.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \8\ Please refer to the Commission's privacy policy which is 
available at https://www.prc.gov/privacy.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

4. Availability of Materials and Recording
    To facilitate discussion of the matters to be explored at the 
technical conference, the Postal Service shall, if necessary, file with 
the Commission any materials not already filed in Docket No. N2021-2 
(such as PowerPoint presentations or Excel spreadsheets) that the 
Postal Service expects to present at the technical conference by June 
25, 2021. Doing so will foster an orderly discussion of the matters 
under consideration and facilitate the ability of individuals to access 
these materials should technical issues arise for any participants 
during the live WebEx. If feasible, the recording will be available on 
the Commission's YouTube Channel at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCbHvK-S8CJFT5yNQe4MkTiQ.
    Participants in the WebEx, by participating, consent to such 
recording and posting. Information obtained during the technical 
conference or as a result of the technical conference is not part of 
the decisional record, unless admitted under the standards of 39 CFR 
3010.322. See 39 CFR 3020.115(e).

H. How To Intervene (Become a Party to This Proceeding)

    To become a party to this proceeding, a person or entity must file 
a notice of intervention by July 1, 2021.\9\ This filing must clearly 
and concisely state: The nature and extent of the intervenor's interest 
in the issues (including the postal services used), the intervenor's 
position on the proposed changes in services (to the extent known), 
whether or not the intervenor requests a hearing, and whether or not 
the intervenor intends to actively participate in the hearing. See 39 
CFR 3010.142(b). Page one of this filing shall contain the name and 
full mailing address of no more than two persons who are to receive 
service, when necessary, of any documents relating to this proceeding. 
See id. A party may participate in discovery; file testimony and 
evidence; conduct written examination of witnesses; conduct limited 
oral cross-examination; file briefs, motions, and objections; and 
present argument before the Commission or the presiding officer. See 
id. sections 3010.142(a); 3020.122(e). An opposition to a notice of 
intervention is due within 3 days after the notice of intervention is 
filed. See id. section 3010.142(d)(2).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \9\ Neither the Public Representative nor the Postal Service 
must file a notice of intervention; both are automatically deemed 
parties to this proceeding. See 39 CFR 3010.142(a).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

I. Discovery

1. Generally Applicable Discovery Procedures
    Discovery requests may be propounded upon filing a notice of 
intervention. Discovery that is reasonably calculated to lead to the 
admissible evidence is allowed. See 39 CFR 3020.116(a). Each party must 
familiarize themselves with the Commission's rules appearing in 39 CFR 
part 3020, including the rules for discovery in N-dockets generally and 
specific to interrogatories, requests for the production of documents, 
and requests for admissions.\10\ No party may propound more than a 
total of 25 interrogatories (including both initial and follow-up 
interrogatories) without prior approval by the Commission or presiding 
officer.\11\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \10\ See 39 CFR 3020.116-3020.119.
    \11\ See 39 CFR 3020.117(a); Order No. 2080 at 42; see also 
Docket No. N2021-2, Order Affirming Presiding Officer's Ruling No. 
N2021-1/9, May 26, 2021, at 9 (Order No. 5901).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Each answer to a discovery request is due within 7 days after the 
discovery request is filed.\12\ Any motion seeking to be excused from 
answering any discovery request is due within 3 days after the 
discovery request is filed. See 39 CFR 3020.105(b)(1). Any response to 
such motion is due within 2 days after the motion is filed. See id. 
section 3020.105(b)(2). The Commission expects parties to make 
judicious use of discovery, objections, and motions practice, and 
encourages parties to make every effort to confer to resolve disputes 
informally before bringing disputes to the Commission to resolve.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \12\ See 39 CFR 3020.117(b)(4), 3020.118(b)(1), 3020.119(b)(1). 
Filing an opposition to a notice of intervention shall not delay 
this deadline. See 39 CFR 3010.142(d)(3).

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[[Page 33793]]

2. Discovery Deadlines for the Postal Service's Direct Case
    All discovery requests regarding the Postal Service's direct case 
must be filed by July 15, 2021. All discovery answers by the Postal 
Service must be filed by July 22, 2021. The parties are urged to 
initiate discovery promptly, rather than to defer filing requests and 
answers to the end of the period established by the Commission.

J. Rebuttal Case Deadlines

    A rebuttal case is any evidence and testimony offered to disprove 
or contradict the evidence and testimony submitted by the Postal 
Service. A rebuttal case does not include cross-examination of the 
Postal Service's witnesses or argument submitted via a brief or 
statement of position. Any party that intends to file a rebuttal case 
must file a notice confirming its intent to do so by July 20, 2021.\13\ 
Any rebuttal case, consisting of any testimony and all materials in 
support of the case, must be filed by July 29, 2021.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \13\ The pro forma schedule set forth in appendix A of 39 CFR 
part 3020 lists this deadline as day 37, which would be Saturday 
July 24, 2021. Consistent with Docket No. N2021-1, this deadline is 
adjusted to day 33, Tuesday July 20, 2021, so as to provide 
additional time necessary for the coordination of the technical 
aspects of the virtual hearing. See Docket No. N2021-1, Presiding 
Officer's Ruling Adjusting Procedural Schedule and Modifying Pre-
Hearing Filings, May 13, 2021, at 2 (Docket No. N2021-1 POR No. 7).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

K. Surrebuttal Case Deadlines

    A surrebuttal case is any evidence and testimony offered to 
disprove or contradict the evidence and testimony submitted by the 
rebutting party. A surrebuttal case does not include cross-examination 
of the rebutting party's witnesses or argument submitted via a brief or 
statement of position. Any party that intends to file surrebuttal case 
must obtain the Commission's prior approval and must bear the burden of 
demonstrating exceptional circumstances that would warrant granting the 
motion. See 39 CFR 3020.121(b). Any motion for leave to file a 
surrebuttal case is due July 30, 2021.\14\ Any response to such motion 
is due August 3, 2021.\15\ Any surrebuttal case, consisting of any 
testimony and all materials in support of the case, must be filed by 
August 5, 2021.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \14\ The pro forma schedule set forth in appendix A of 39 CFR 
part 3020 lists this deadline as day 44, which would be Saturday 
July 31, 2021. However, this deadline is adjusted to Friday July 30, 
2021, so as to provide additional time necessary for the 
coordination of the technical aspects of the virtual hearing.
    \15\ The pro forma schedule set forth in appendix A of 39 CFR 
part 3020 lists this deadline as day 46, which would be Monday 
August 2, 2021. However, this deadline is adjusted to Tuesday August 
3, 2021, so as to allow 2 business days to respond to the filing of 
a motion for leave to file a surrebuttal case.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

L. Hearing Dates

    The Commission expects that this case will require no more than one 
or two business days for hearing, but reserves three business days out 
of an abundance of caution and consistent with the pro forma schedule 
set forth in appendix A of 39 CFR part 3020. If no party files a notice 
of intent to file a rebuttal case by July 20, 2021, then the hearing of 
the Postal Service's direct case shall begin July 29, 2021, with 
additional days reserved on July 30, 2021 and August 2, 2021. If any 
party files a notice of intent to file a rebuttal case by July 20, 2021 
but no surrebuttal testimony will be presented, then the hearing of the 
Postal Service's direct case shall begin August 5, 2021, with 
additional days reserved on August 6, 2021, and August 9, 2021. If any 
party files a notice of intent to file a rebuttal case by July 20, 
2021, and the Commission approves the presentation of surrebuttal 
testimony, then the hearing of the Postal Service's direct case shall 
begin August 10, 2021, and the hearing of the surrebuttal case shall 
end August 12, 2021.

M. Presentation of Evidence and Testimony

    Evidence and testimony shall be in writing and may be accompanied 
by a trial brief or legal memoranda. Id. section 3020.122(e)(1). 
Whenever possible and particularly for factual or statistical evidence, 
written cross-examination will be used in lieu of oral cross-
examination. Id. section 3020.122(e)(2).
    Oral cross-examination will be allowed to clarify written cross-
examination and/or to test assumptions, conclusions, or other opinion 
evidence. Id. section 3020.122(e)(3). Assuming that no rebuttal case is 
filed, any party that intends to conduct oral cross-examination shall 
file a notice of intent to do so by July 22, 2021.\16\ The notice must 
include an estimate of the amount of time requested for each witness.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \16\ Consistent with the necessary adjustments made in Docket 
No. N2021-1 to conduct a virtual hearing, the Commission adjusts the 
timeframe contemplated by 39 CFR 3020.122(e)(3) and instead sets 
this deadline as 7 days before the beginning of the virtual hearing 
(assuming that no rebuttal case is filed).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In lieu of submitting hard copy documents to the Commission as 
contemplated by 39 CFR 3020.122(e)(2), each party shall file a single 
document titled ``Notice of Designations'' containing a list for each 
witness that identifies the materials to be designated (without the 
responses). The filing party shall arrange its list for each witness in 
alphabetical order by the name of the party propounding the 
interrogatory followed by numerical order of the interrogatory. For 
example:

Designations for Witness One
    ABC/USPS-T1-1
    ABC/USPS-T1-3
    DEF/USPS-T1-1
    GHI/USPS-T1-3
    JKL/USPS-T1-2
Designations for Witness Two
    DEF/USPS-T2-4
    GHI/USPS-T2-2

    Assuming that no rebuttal case is filed, each party shall file its 
Notice of Designations by July 23, 2021.
    Assuming that no rebuttal case is filed, on July 27, 2021, the 
Postal Service shall file a ``Notice of Designated Materials'' 
identifying any corrections to the testimony or designated materials 
for each witness sponsored by the Postal Service. Attached to that 
notice shall be a single Adobe PDF file that contains, in order: The 
witness's testimony (with any corrections highlighted); identification 
of any library references sponsored by the witness; and the witness's 
designated written responses in alphabetical order by the name of the 
party propounding the interrogatory followed by numerical order of the 
interrogatory (with any corrections to the responses highlighted).

N. Presentation of Argument

1. General Procedures
    Any person that has intervened in Docket No. N2021-2 (and thereby 
formally became a party to this proceeding) may submit written argument 
by filing a brief or a statement of position; they also may request to 
present oral argument at the hearing. See 39 CFR 3020.123, see also 39 
CFR 3010.142(a). Any person that has not intervened in Docket No. 
N2021-2 may submit written argument by filing a statement of position. 
See 39 CFR 3020.123(g), see also 39 CFR 3010.142(a).
2. Presentation of Written Argument
    A brief is a written document that addresses relevant legal and 
evidentiary issues for the Commission to consider and must adhere to 
the requirements of 39 CFR 3020.123(a)-(f). A statement of position is 
a less formal version of a brief that describes the filer's position on 
the Request and the information on the existing record in support of 
that position. See 39 CFR 3020.123(g).

[[Page 33794]]

a. Briefing Deadlines
    Assuming that no rebuttal case is filed, initial briefs are due 
August 9, 2021, and reply briefs are due August 16, 2021. If any party 
files a notice confirming its intent to file a rebuttal case by July 
20, 2021, then the briefing schedule may be revised.
b. Deadline for Statement of Position
    Any interested person, including anyone that has not filed a notice 
of intervention and become a party to this proceeding, may file a 
statement of position. See 39 CFR 3020.123(g), see also 39 CFR 
3010.142(a). A statement of position is limited to the existing record 
and may not include any new evidentiary material. See 39 CFR 
3020.123(g). Filings styled as a brief or comments, conforming with the 
content and timing requirements, shall be deemed statements of 
positions. Any statement of position is due August 9, 2021.
3. Request To Present Oral Argument
    Oral argument has not historically been part of N-cases; the 
Commission would only grant a request to present oral argument upon an 
appropriate showing of need by the presenting party. See Order No. 2080 
at 53. Assuming that no rebuttal case is filed, any party may file a 
request to present oral argument by July 22, 2021.

O. The Commission's Advisory Opinion

    Unless there is a determination of good cause for extension, the 
Commission shall issue its advisory opinion within 90 days of the 
filing of the Request. See 39 CFR 3020.102(a). Therefore, absent a 
determination of good cause for extension, the Commission shall issue 
its advisory opinion in this proceeding by September 15, 2021. ``The 
opinion shall be in writing and shall include a certification by each 
Commissioner agreeing with the opinion that in his [or her] judgment 
the opinion conforms to the policies established under [title 39, 
United States Code].'' 39 U.S.C. 3661(c). The advisory opinion shall 
address the specific changes proposed by the Postal Service in the 
nature of postal services. See 39 CFR 3020.102(b).

P. Public Representative

    Pursuant to 39 U.S.C. 3661(c), Mallory L. Smith shall continue to 
serve as an officer of the Commission (Public Representative) to 
represent the interests of the general public in this proceeding. See 
Order No. 5900 at 3, 4.

V. Ordering Paragraphs

    It is ordered:
    1. The procedural schedule for this proceeding is set forth below 
the signature of this Order.
    2. Pursuant to 39 CFR 3010.106 and 3020.122(b), the Commission 
appoints Commissioner Ann C. Fisher to serve as presiding officer in 
Docket No. N2021-2, effective immediately.
    3. Commissioner Fisher is authorized to propound formal discovery 
requests upon any party, at her discretion. The numerical limitation on 
interrogatories appearing in 39 CFR 3020.117(a) shall not apply to the 
Presiding Officer.
    4. Commissioner Fisher is authorized to rule on procedural issues 
such as motions for late acceptance and discovery-related matters such 
as motions to be excused from answering discovery requests.
    5. Commissioner Fisher is authorized to make other rulings in this 
Docket not otherwise specifically reserved to the Commission according 
to 39 CFR 3020 and 3010.106.
    6. Pursuant to 39 U.S.C. 3661(c), Mallory L. Smith shall continue 
to serve as an officer of the Commission (Public Representative) to 
represent the interests of the general public in this proceeding.
    7. The Secretary shall arrange for publication of this order in the 
Federal Register.

    By the Commission.
Mallory Smith,
Federal Register Liaison.

               Procedural Schedule for Docket No. N2021-2
             [Established by the Commission, June 21, 2021]
------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                       Technical Conference Dates
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Deadline to Email [email protected] to  June 23, 2021.
 Register to Participate in the Live Technical
 Conference via WebEx.
Filing of the Postal Service's Materials for the  June 25, 2021.
 Technical Conference.
Technical Conference (live via WebEx)...........  June 28, 2021, at
                                                   11:00 a.m. Eastern
                                                   Daylight Time.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                          Intervention Deadline
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Filing of Notice of Intervention................  July 1, 2021.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
        Discovery Deadlines for the Postal Service's Direct Case
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Filing of Discovery Requests....................  July 15, 2021.
Filing of the Postal Service's Answers to         July 22, 2021.
 Discovery.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Deadlines in Preparation for Hearing (assuming no rebuttal case)
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Filing of Notice Confirming Intent to Oral        July 22, 2021.
 Conduct Cross-Examination.
Filing of Request to Present Oral Argument......  July 22, 2021.
Filing of Notice of Designations................  July 23, 2021.
Filing of Notices of Designated Materials.......  July 27, 2021.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                 Rebuttal Case Deadlines (if applicable)
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Filing of Notice Confirming Intent to File a      July 20, 2021.
 Rebuttal Case.
Filing of Rebuttal Case.........................  July 29, 2021.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
               Surrebuttal Case Deadlines (if applicable)
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Filing of Motion for Leave to File Surrebuttal    July 30, 2021.
 Case.

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Filing of Response to Motion for Leave to File    August 3, 2021.
 Surrebuttal Case.
Filing of Surrebuttal Case (if authorized)......  August 5, 2021.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                              Hearing Dates
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Hearings (with no Rebuttal Case)................  July 29 to 30 and
                                                   August 2, 2021.
Hearings (with Rebuttal Case, but no authorized   August 5, 6 and 9,
 Surrebuttal Case).                                2021.
Hearings (with Rebuttal Case and authorized       August 10 to 12, 2021.
 Surrebuttal Case).
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                           Briefing Deadlines
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Filing of Initial Briefs (with no Rebuttal Case)  August 9, 2021.
Filing of Reply Briefs (with no Rebuttal Case)..  August 16, 2021.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                     Statement of Position Deadline
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Filing of Statement of Position (with no          August 9, 2021.
 Rebuttal Case).
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                        Advisory Opinion Deadline
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Filing of Advisory Opinion (absent determination  September 15, 2021.
 of good cause for extension).
------------------------------------------------------------------------

BILLING CODE 7710-FW-P

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[FR Doc. 2021-13515 Filed 6-24-21; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 7710-FW-C