BUS-65, Guidelines for University Mail Services

October 14, 1996

I. PURPOSE

The purpose of this Bulletin is to set forth policies and establish guidelines for the use of University mail services.

II. REFERENCES

  1. University Policy on Relations with Employee Organizations, April 24, 1980.
  2. University of California Policies Applying to Campus Activities, Organizations and Students, August 15, 1994.
  3. Business and Finance Bulletin A-47, University Direct Costing Policy, July 1, 1984.
  4. Business and Finance Bulletin RMP-8, Legal Requirements on Privacy of and Access to Information, July 1, 1992.
  5. Business and Finance Bulletin RMP-12, Guidelines for Assuring Privacy of Personal Information in Mailing Lists and Telephone Directories, June 15, 1989.
  6. Federal Code Regulations 39 (18 U.S.C. Section 1693 et. seq.;) Federal Private Express Statutes.
  7. Domestic and International Mail Manuals.
  8. University Records Disposition Schedule.
  9. State of California Information Practices Act (Government Codes 1798.60 & 1798.62).
  10. State of California Public Records Act (Government Code 6254.3).

III. RELATIONSHIP WITH U.S. POSTAL SERVICE

Central mail unit managers are the authorized campus representatives for communicating and contracting with the U.S. Postal Service on behalf of the campus, including:

  1. establishing delivery and collection agreements;
  2. entering into postal meter contracts;
  3. obtaining mailing permits for all required classes of service; and
  4. maintaining records in accordance with U.S. Postal Service and University policies and regulations.

Questions or problems that have multi-campus or regional implications shall be coordinated with the office of the Senior Vice President--Business and Finance.

IV. REGULATIONS FOR CAMPUS MAIL SERVICES

The following regulations for mail services shall be observed by all campuses and shall guide campus policies and procedures.

  1. Postage Machines. Postal meters shall be installed only at the central mail unit to assure maintenance and auditable records of meter usage and to comply with U.S. Postal Service regulations governing the University's postage metering privileges. Installation and use of U.S. Postal Service meter machines by a campus department other than the central mail unit is not permitted except with prior written approval by the Chancellor or designee (a copy of the approval shall be sent to the central mail unit). Such requests for approval shall be considered only in situations when use of the central mail unit meters is physically impractical (such as a remote, off-campus location or a contract station). At such locations, a person will be assigned responsibility for use of the metering machine and shall be instructed in the U.S. Postal Service requirement associated with its use.
  2. Postal Materials. The central mail unit shall maintain an inventory of postal materials (stamps, postcards, etc.) which departments may purchase to meet special mailing needs. Campus departments other than the central mail unit shall retain such materials only for urgent mailings, and shall maintain auditable records of usage.
    The purchase of postal materials directly from the U.S. Postal Service by departments other than the central mail unit, is not permitted except with prior written approval by the Chancellor or designee (a copy of the approval shall be sent to the central mail unit).
  3. Bulk Mailing. The U.S. Postal Service regulates the University's continuing eligibility to mail at special non-profit bulk rates, and failure to follow U.S. Postal Service regulations could result in the revocation of the University's non-profit mail permit. Only the central mail unit is authorized to affix non-profit bulk mail postage, and it is the responsibility of the manager to certify that the mailings meet the standards required by the regulations.
    To assure compliance, the central mail unit is authorized to review all bulk mail material for conformance with the standards prior to affixing postage. Materials should be submitted for review by the central mail unit prior to being printed or otherwise duplicated for mailing. Materials that do not meet the standards will not be mailed at the bulk rate.
  4. Documentation. The central mail unit manager is responsible for maintaining documentation of all meter and permit use and shall make records available to University and external auditors and Federal postal inspectors, as required.
  5. Federal, State, and University Regulations. The University's postage-free internal mail service is governed by Federal Private Express Statutes and regulations which require that:
  6. a. all mail delivered without postage must be official University business and must be delivered by University employees; and

    b. the personnel delivering the mail must be casual or full-time University employees entitled to the same benefits (including, but not limited to, salary, annual vacation time, absence allowed for illness, health benefits, worker's compensation insurance, and retirement benefits) provided to other casual or full-time employees of the University working the same percentage of time and in the same or equivalent classification;

    No materials delivered through the University mail service shall:

    a. advocate an individual's or organization's political or religious position;

    b. imply University or campus endorsement, support, or opposition to a political, religious, or civic issue that has not been appropriately authorized by the Chancellor or designee (a copy of the authorization shall be sent to the central mail unit);

    c. be of a commercial nature that solicits, or would provide, personal and/or financial profit to a University employee or to a profit-making organization; and

    d. be of a personal nature, such as:

    (i) merchandise catalogs;

    (ii) monthly bills; and

    (iii) Christmas cards or invitations to private functions.

  7. Definition of Mail. The physical dimensions and definition of internal mail shall be established by the central mail unit in response to U.S. Postal Service and/or processing equipment requirements. Parcels (corrugated boxes, tubes, plastic containers, etc.) may be considered non-standard internal mail and the central mail unit may assess special handling charges; 7. Delivery Points. Establishing the number and location of collection and delivery points shall be the responsibility of the central mail unit. Requests for additions or deletions to the locations should be directed to the manager of the central mail unit. Changes will be based on need and resources available.
  8. Related Services. Central mail units may provide additional related services based on campus needs.
  9. Addresses. All mail delivered through the internal mail services must be properly addressed.

V. RELATIONSHIP WITH OUTSIDE VENDORS OF MAIL RELATED SERVICES

The manager of the central mail unit is responsible for establishing purchase agreements with outside vendors to augment services provided by the central mail unit (foreign mail delivery, express mail service, special handling of medical/research materials, etc.), and for assuring compliance with U.S. Postal Service regulations, standards of timeliness, and cost containment.

To assure receipt of volume-based discounts and to prevent violations of Federal Regulations, agreements between individual campus employees or departments for mail preparation or dispatch services is strongly discouraged. Any arrangements or contracts other than those established by the central mail unit require prior approval by the Chancellor or designee (a copy of the approval document shall be sent to the central mail unit).

VI. RECHARGE RATES AND BILLING PROCEDURES

Recharge rates for goods and services provided by central mail units shall be determined in accordance with Business and Finance Bulletin A-47, University Direct Costing Policy, and existing campus regulations. Approved recharge rates shall be published and available to customers. Documentation of recharge activity shall be maintained in accordance with University records disposition schedules and shall be made available to internal and external auditors as necessary.

VII. MAILING LISTS

Home addresses and home telephone numbers of University employees are not public records under the State of California Public Records Act. In addition, this information is protected and exempt from disclosure to the public under the California Information Practices Act and University policy. Such information should not be disclosed, except as specified in Business and Finance Bulletins RMP-12, Guidelines for Assuring Privacy of Personal Information in Mailing Lists and Telephone Directories, and RMP-8, Legal Requirements on Privacy of and Access to Information. Mailing lists may not be distributed, rented, or sold for commercial purposes.

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