Dear Congressman ______________:

        I urge you to support H.R. 1169, introduced by Congressmen Burton, Ehrlich and Filner. I ask you to be a co-sponsor of this very important bill. H.R. 1169 is needed to maintain the reasonable costs of fundraising by the many nonprofit organizations in your district and across the country.


        H.R. 1169 is designed to clarify existing law that the nonprofit postage rates apply to nonprofit fundraising mailings. The provision for nonprofit rates is presently codified at 39 U.S.C. 3626. The reduced nonprofit rates were created to enable nonprofit organizations to mail letters consistent with their nonprofit purposes. Such letters include letters designed to raise funds for the organizations and to promote various educational and civic functions.

        The Postal Service handled approximately 16 billion pieces of nonprofit mail in 1999. Despite the misconceptions of some, nonprofit postage rates more than cover the Postal Service’s actual costs of handling and delivering such nonprofit letters. These letters play a vital role in helping nonprofits provide valuable services AT NO COST TO THE GOVERNMENT OR TAXPAYERS.

        H.R. 1169 does not change what most believed the law to be; it corrects an arbitrary interpretation of the Postal Service. The bill clarifies that nonprofit organizations may enter into contractual arrangements with third parties, such as fundraisers, and still mail their fundraising letters at the nonprofit postage rates even if such nonprofit organizations do not have 100 percent of the risk of loss on such fundraising mailings. The bill prevents the Postal Service from trying to tell nonprofits what the terms of their fundraising contracts must be. On the other hand, the bill explicitly maintains existing law that prohibits misuse of the nonprofit rates to mail commercial matter selling unrelated goods and services.

        H.R. 1169 is very important to us and to the nonprofit community. Please show your support for nonprofits by supporting H.R. 1169 as a co-sponsor and through your vote.