Updated Status Report to The President's Management Council


July 31, 2008 


Mr. Clay Johnson
Chairman, President’s Management Council
1650 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Room 260
Washington, DC 20503

SUBJECT: Executive Order 13,392 - Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Improvement Plan

All federal agencies are required to report to the President’s Management Council an updated status report regarding corrective actions taken, or to be taken, regarding each reported deficiency in meeting one or more milestones in implementing their FOIA Improvement Plans, pursuant to Executive Order 13,392, Section 3(c)(iii)(D). The purpose of this letter is to provide an update on the status of deficiencies contained in the Postal Service’s FOIA Annual Report.

The Postal Service met nearly all of the goals and milestones established in the report submitted in response to Executive Order 13,392 that were to be completed for this reporting period. Two milestones were not completed on time, as described in Section XII.C of the USPS FOIA Annual Report for Fiscal Year 2007. A copy of the USPS FOIA Annual Report is attached. Also attached is a copy of the USPS FOIA Report and Improvement Plan. The original milestones that were not completed on time are found at Sections E.4.3, E.4.5, E.6.3 and E.26 of the Plan.

Milestones E.4.3 and E.4.5

1. FOIA Improvement Plan to which this deficient milestone relates.

Reference Guides, Training and other Tools

2. Deficient milestone and the original target date from the FOIA Improvement Plan.

Update Handbook AS-353, Guide to Privacy and the Freedom of Information Act, as the USPS source of information for the FOIA. This milestone was due for completion May 2007.

3. Steps taken to correct the deficiency and the dates by which the steps were completed.

The Postal Service has completed 4 of the 5 steps under this milestone. Effective December 20, 2007, Handbook AS353, Guide to Privacy, the Freedom of Information Act, and Records Management, was revised. Notice was provided to postal employees and the public via the Postal Bulletin. The changes to the Handbook were included in training material. On February 13 and 15, 2008, training was provided to Postal Service FOIA Coordinators on the Handbook changes. Draft revisions to 39 CFR 265 were circulated for management clearance January 2008. Management comments were subsequently reviewed and final clearance was completed February 2008. A Federal Register notice was drafted and forwarded to the Postal Service Information Policies & Procedures office July 2008. The Information Policies & Procedures office has responsibility for publishing Postal Service corporate policies and procedures.

4. Future remedial steps and the dates by which the steps will be completed.

To complete this milestone, the Postal Service plans to publish a Federal Register notice to amend 39 CFR Part 265 by September 2008.

Milestone E.6.3

1. FOIA Improvement Plan to which this deficient milestone relates.

FOIA Processing and Tracking

2. Deficient milestone and the original target date from the FOIA Improvement Plan.

Convert the Records Office from a paper-based, manual process to a fully automated electronic process. The milestone was due for completion February 2007.

3. Steps taken to correct the deficiency and the dates by which the steps were completed.

The Postal Service has completed the first two of three steps under this milestone. Testing of the USPS FOIA Tracking System was completed and new business rules were developed. On March 5 & 6, 2008, all employees in the USPS Records Office, Inspection Service FOIA Requester Service Center, and Information Technology representatives were provided formal training on the FOIA Tracking System, a commercial-off-the-shelf application. Additional letter templates were added to the application May 2008 and the “Records Search” module of the application was populated with USPS Headquarters and field FOIA Coordinator contact information. Additionally, three software upgrades were implemented in Spring of 2008. The Records Office staff has begun its transition to an automated FOIA process. For example, simple FOIA requests, such as referrals, are now processed electronically. These steps were completed May 2008.

4. Future remedial steps and the dates by which the steps will be completed.

To complete this milestone, the Postal Service plans to fully transition to an automated process for FY2009. To complete this milestone, all complex FOIA requests will be processed electronically by end of February 2009.

Milestone E.26

1. FOIA Improvement Plan to which this deficient milestone relates.

FOIA Program

2. Deficient milestone and the original target date from the FOIA Improvement Plan.

Improve overall administration of the USPS. This milestone was due April 2007.

3. Steps taken to correct the deficiency and the dates by which the steps were completed.

The Postal Service has completed 4 of the 5 steps under this milestone. Effective December 20, 2007, Handbook AS353, Guide to Privacy, the Freedom of Information Act, and Records Management, was revised. Notice was provided to postal employees and the public via the Postal Bulletin. Draft revisions to 39 CFR 265 were circulated for management clearance January 2008. Management comments were subsequently reviewed and final clearance was completed February 2008. Draft revisions to 39 CFR 265 were circulated for management clearance January 2008. Management comments were subsequently reviewed and final clearance was completed February 2008. A Federal Register notice was drafted and forwarded to the Postal Service Information Policies & Procedures office July 2008. The Information Policies & Procedures office has responsibility for publishing Postal Service corporate policies and procedures.

4. Future remedial steps and the dates by which the steps will be completed.

To complete this milestone, the Postal Service plans to publish a Federal Register notice to amend 39 CFR Part 265 by September 2008.

Please direct any questions you may have concerning the USPS FOIA Report and Implementation Plan to Ms. Jane Eyre, Manager, Records Office, at (202) 268-2144.


Delores J. Killette

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