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Facing Identification Marks (FIM) on Absentee Certificate Envelopes

Posted in
Priority: 
Timely Attention Required
Date: 
November 21, 2012
To: 
Wisconsin County Clerks
To: 
Wisconsin Municipal Clerks
To: 
City of Milwaukee Election Commission
To: 
Milwaukee County Election Commission
From: 
Diane Lowe, Lead Elections Specialist
AttachmentSize
Ltr muni clerks responsible for correct FIMS.pdf172.71 KB
FIM examples_uses_dimensions.pdf76.93 KB

Municipal Clerks Responsible for Correct FIMs

The G.A.B. has received complaints from the Post Offices in several of Wisconsin’s larger municipalities regarding incorrect Facing Identification Marks (FIM) on the address sides of the Absentee Certificate Envelopes (GAB-122 and GAB-122m).  The FIM is the mark consisting of a series of vertical lines located in the upper right corner of the envelope near the area where postage is placed.   Please see the accompanying page from the USPS Domestic Mail Manual for FIM descriptions. 

G.A.B. staff has prepared the templates described below after lengthy consultation with a USPS Mailpiece Design Analyst (MDA).  The type of FIM required depends upon the method used by each individual municipality for return mail.  Because municipal clerks are the postal customers and are responsible for conducting absentee voting in their respective municipalities, it is the responsibility of each municipal clerk to ensure the Absentee Certificate Envelopes printed for use in their municipality contain the appropriate FIM. 

 Note: Facing Identification Marks (FIMs) are used on reply mail only (the GAB-122 and GAB-122m envelopes).  The FIM on the envelopes in which you mail absentee ballots to voters (GAB-120 and GAB-120m) has been removed.

There are four Address Side Absentee Certificate Envelope templates posted to the website under FORMS (http://gab.wi.gov/forms):

GAB-122 FIM A  (Formerly the “GAB-122”)

• This template has not changed except to rename it “GAB-122 FIM A.” 
• This is the Absentee Certificate Envelope used for nonmilitary voters. 
• The FIM A template is appropriate if you

  1. use Courtesy Reply Mail (CRM), Meter Reply Mail (MRM) or you simply place a stamp on the envelope, AND 
  2. use a preprinted delivery point barcode  (DO NOT USE FIM A IF NOT BARCODING.  PLEASE SEE USAGE FOR GAB-122 NO FIM.)*

*GAB-122 NO FIM  (This template is new.) 

• This is the Absentee Certificate Envelope used for nonmilitary voters.
• The NO FIM template is appropriate if you

  1. use Courtesy Reply Mail (CRM), Meter Reply Mail (MRM) or you simply place a stamp on the envelope, BUT
  2. do not use a preprinted delivery point barcode

GAB-122m FIM B  (Formerly the “GAB-122m”)

• This template has not changed except to rename it “GAB-122m FIM B.” 
• This is the Absentee Certificate Envelope used for military voters.
• The FIM B template is appropriate if you

  1. use Business Reply Mail (BRM) without a preprinted BRM ZIP+4 barcode. 

GAB-122m FIM C  (This template is new.)

• This is the Absentee Certificate Envelope used for military voters.
• The FIM C template is used for Business Reply Mail (BRM) with a preprinted BRM ZIP+4 barcode. 

If you are unsure or have questions about using the appropriate FIM, you may contact the MDA Support Center at 855-593-6093 or MDA@usps.gov   or speak to a representative from your local Post Office

Attachment (1)

cc: Kevin J. Kennedy
 Director and General Counsel
 Government Accountability Board

Nathaniel E. Robinson
Elections Division Administrator
Government Accountability Board

Ross D. Hein
Elections Supervisor
Government Accountability Board

Scot, Lange
Roto Graphics

Lori Johnson
Bear Graphics