Loading
The Oregon Administrative Rules contain OARs filed through March 15, 2014
 
QUESTIONS ABOUT THE CONTENT OR MEANING OF THIS AGENCY'S RULES?
CLICK HERE TO ACCESS RULES COORDINATOR CONTACT INFORMATION

 

DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS

 

DIVISION 131

MAIL (INMATE)

291-131-0005

Authority, Purpose, and Policy

(1) Authority: The authority for these rules is granted to the Director of the Department of Corrections in accordance with ORS 179.040, 423.020, 423.030, and 423.075.

(2) Purpose: The purpose of these rules is to establish Department of Corrections policy and procedures governing the sending, receipt and processing of inmate mail in Department of Corrections facilities.

(3) Policy: Within the inherent limitations of resources and the need for facility security, safety, health, order and discipline, and inmate rehabilitation, it is the policy of the Department of Corrections (DOC) to permit inmates to send and receive mail in the manner and under the circumstances set forth in these rules.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 179.040, ORS 423.020, ORS 423.030 & ORS 423.075
Stats. Implemented: ORS 179.040, ORS 423.020, ORS 423.030 & ORS 423.075
Hist.: CD 1-1979, f. & ef. 1-4-79; CD 11-1980(Temp), f. & ef. 4-10-80; CD 16-1980(Temp), f. & ef. 4-18-80; CD 28-1980, f. & ef. 8-22-80; CD 31-1981(Temp), f. & ef. 6-30-81; CD 43-1981, f. & ef. 10-30-81; CD 22-1983(Temp), f. & ef. 6-3-83; CD 27-1983, f. & ef. 7-11-83; CD 13-1984, f. & ef. 4-11-84; CD 57-1985, f. & ef. 8-16-85; CD 14-1988, f. & cert. ef. 10-7-88 (and corrected 10-25-88); CD 1-1992, f. & cert. ef. 1-29-92; DOC 20-1998, f. 9-22-98, cert. ef. 12-1-98; DOC 13-2002, f. 9-11-02 cert. ef. 9-20-02

291-131-0010

Definitions

(1) Business Transaction: A transaction involving the purchase, sale or delivery of merchandise, commodities or services.

(2) Central Administration: The Director, Deputy Director, Assistant Directors, administrators, or other Department of Corrections officials whose offices or mail boxes are located in the central office at 2575 Center Street NE, Salem, OR 97301-4667.

(3) Confiscate: To remove the item or that portion of the item which violates these rules.

(4) Contraband: Any article or thing which an inmate is prohibited by statute, rule or order from obtaining, possessing, or which the inmate is not specifically authorized to obtain or possess, or which the inmate alters without authorization.

(5) Department of Corrections Facility: Any institution, facility or staff office, including the grounds, operated by the Department of Corrections.

(6) Electronic Messages: Correspondence exchanged between inmates and subscribers through a department approved third-party electronic messaging vendor by means of computers equipped for internet access.

(7) Functional Unit: Any organizational component within the Department of Corrections responsible for the delivery of services or coordination of program operations.

(8) Functional Unit Manager: Any person within the Department of Corrections who reports to either the Director, Deputy Director, an Assistant Director, or an administrator and has responsibility for delivery of program services or coordination of program operations.

(9) Inflammatory Material: Material whose presence in the facility is deemed by the department to constitute a direct and immediate threat to the security, safety, health, good order, or discipline of the facility because it incites or advocates physical violence against others. No publication shall be considered inflammatory solely on the basis of its appeal to a particular ethnic, racial or religious audience. No material shall be considered inflammatory solely because it criticizes the operation, programs or personnel of the Department of Corrections, the State Board of Parole and Post-Prison Supervision, or of any other government agency.

(10) Inmate: Any person under the supervision of the Department of Corrections who is not on parole, probation, or post-prison supervision status.

(11) Inspection: To examine or view, including reading or photocopying.

(12) Inter-Agency Mail System: A system of delivering mail between or among state agencies and other units of government.

(13) Intradepartmental Mail System: A system of delivering mail among functional units within the Department of Corrections.

(14) Legal Mail: Incoming or outgoing mail to or from an attorney, court, or court official which is clearly worded "legal mail" on the addressee side of the envelope. The legal mail designation should be set apart from the return address and mailing address for ease of recognition.

(15) Mail: Incoming or outgoing mail, including electronic messages, authorized by these rules to be sent or received by an inmate and delivered by the United States Postal Service or any other carrier approved by the department including, but not limited to, parcel service enterprises or electronic messaging services.

(16) Money: Cash, money orders, personal checks, warrants, certified checks, and other remittances.

(17) Non-Inmate Sender: The person who is not residing at a Department of Corrections facility who sends mail to an inmate who is residing in a Department of Corrections facility.

(18) Official Mail: Incoming and outgoing mail addressed to or from officials of the confining authority, the Governor, the Secretary of State, Oregon's state legislators, Oregon's United States Congressional delegation, tribal governments, administrators of grievance systems, foreign embassy consulate, and members of the paroling authority, which is clearly worded "official mail" on the addressee side of the envelope. The official mail designation should be set apart from the return address and mailing address for ease of recognition.

(19) Package: A completely wrapped parcel received that is more than 1/4 inch thick regardless of other dimensions, received directly from the source with authorized postage, and legal and official mail up to three inches.

(20) Personal Photograph: Any analog or digital photograph of a person, or any duplication thereof. Personal photographs include any photograph scanned and printed from the internet or other photographs where the identity of the person is unknown to the department or cannot be reasonably ascertained by the department by examining the content of the accompanying material. Any graphic image sent with or attached to an electronic massage will be considered a personal photograph.

(21) Portrayal: The act or process by which an idea or message is depicted or represented, usually by written words or images.

(22) Publication: A book or single issue of a magazine or newspaper, plus such other materials addressed to a specific inmate as flyers, and catalogs, received directly from the publisher.

(23) Publisher, Distributor or Book Vender: A business, organization, or firm that issues and makes available to the public (generally for sale and wide distribution) magazines, newspapers, new and used books and other publications.

(24) Security Threat Group (STG): Any group of two or more individuals who:

(a) Have a common name, identifying symbol, or characteristic which serves to distinguish themselves from others.

(b) Have members, affiliates, or associates who individually or collectively engage, or have engaged, in a pattern of illicit activity or acts of misconduct that violates Oregon Department of Corrections rules.

(c) Have the potential to act in concert to present a threat, or potential threat, to staff, public, visitors, inmates, offenders or the secure and orderly operation of the institution.

(25) Security Threat Group Paraphernalia: Any material, document(s) or items evidencing security threat group involvement or activities (e.g., rosters, constitutions, structures, codes, pictures, training material, clothing, communications or other security threat group-related contraband.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 179.040, 423.020, 423.030 & 423.075
Stats. Implemented: ORS 179.040, 423.020, 423.030 & 423.075
Hist.: CD 1-1979, f. & ef. 1-4-79; CD 11-1980(Temp), f. & ef. 4-10-80; CD 16-1980(Temp), f. & ef. 4-18-80; CD 28-1980, f. & ef. 8-22-80; CD 31-1981(Temp), f. & ef. 6-30-81; CD 43-1981, f. & ef. 10-30-81; CD 22-1983(Temp), f. & ef. 6-3-83; CD 27-1983, f. & ef. 7-11-83; CD 13-1984, f. & ef. 4-11-84; CD 57-1985, f. & ef. 8-16-85; CD 14-1988, f. & cert. ef. 10-7-88 (and corrected 10-25-88); CD 1-1992, f. & cert. ef. 1-29-92; CD 10-1993, f. 5-5-93, cert. ef. 7-1-93; DOC 20-1998, f. 9-22-98, cert. ef. 12-1-98; DOC 12-2001(Temp) f. & cert. ef. 6-20-01 thru 12-17-01; DOC 20-2001, f. & cert. ef. 12-17-01; DOC 4-2002(Temp), f. & cert. ef. 3-25-02 thru 9-21-02; DOC 13-2002, f. 9-11-02 cert. ef. 9-20-02; DOC 5-2007(Temp), f. & cert. ef. 8-1-07 thru 1-27-08; DOC 1-2008, f. & cert. ef. 1-25-08

Procedures

291-131-0015

General

(1) The functional unit manager or designee will ensure employees responsible for mail room operations are properly trained prior to assignment.

(2) Inmates shall not send, receive, transfer, or possess mail which violates the provisions of these rules.

(3) Inmates shall not send, receive, transfer, or possess mail to or from the victim(s) of their crime(s) of conviction (both past and present), except as authorized in writing by the functional unit manager or designee.

(4) Inmates shall not conduct business transactions by mail without the prior written consent of the functional unit manager or designee.

(5) Excluding weekends and holidays, incoming and outgoing correspondence should be processed within two days of receipt; publications and packages within four days of receipt, unless the mail is being reviewed for possible violations.

(6) All incoming and outgoing mail is subject to inspection or examination. Legal and official mail is subject to inspection or examination as provided in OAR 291-131-0030.

(7) All mail, excluding packages, shall be routed through the U.S. Postal Service, inter-agency or intra-departmental mail systems. Mail may also be sent by other approved mail service providers for packages and special circumstances, if authorized by the functional unit manager. Other mail service providers includes, but is not limited to, United Parcel Service, U.S. Airborne, Federal Express, approved newspaper delivery, and approved vendors offering electronic messaging services. Authorization may vary among Department of Corrections facilities depending upon security concerns, mail room operations and physical layout of the building and grounds.

(8) Inmates shall be permitted to send business mail to officials of the Department of Corrections in Central Administration through the intra-departmental mail system. Inmates shall not be permitted to send mail through the state inter-agency mail system. Inmates shall be permitted to receive mail from state agencies and officials through the inter-agency and intra-departmental mail systems.

(9) Each month an inmate, who in the previous month has not accumulated the cost of five postage paid envelopes (for less than one ounce) in his/her trust account, will be issued five postage paid envelopes by the facility if he/she requests.

(10) Inmate to Inmate Mail Restriction:

(a) An inmate may be prohibited from corresponding with another inmate(s) when directed by the Department of Corrections facility functional unit manager or designee, and approved by the Assistant Director of Operations/designee, based on specific circumstances or information which in their judgment indicates that the inmate has or may use correspondence with the other inmate(s) in order to violate provisions of law, department administrative rules, or to otherwise engage in activity that threatens or impairs the security, good order, or discipline of the facility, inmate rehabilitation, or the health or safety of inmates, staff or the public, or to engage in other activity that threatens or is detrimental to other legitimate penological objectives. 

(b) Affected inmate(s) will be notified of the restriction through written directive. A decision to order an inmate-to-inmate mail restriction under these rules shall be final and not subject to administrative review.

(11) Electronic Messaging:

(a) Availability and Inmate Access:

(A) The Department of Corrections may, in its sole discretion, authorize eligible inmates in certain Department of Corrections facilities to exchange electronic messages with friends and family as a non-monetary incentive, subject to the conditions and circumstances set forth in these and in the Performance Recognition Award System (PRAS) rules (OAR 291-77).

(B) When authorized by the department, electronic messaging will be available only to those inmates that are at the upper two incentive levels at their respective institutions (Levels 2 and 3 at minimum-security and above institutions or Levels 5 and 6 at minimum-security institutions).

(C) In those Department of Corrections facilities in which electronic messaging is authorized, inmates that are otherwise eligible to access electronic messaging in those facilities may do so in accordance with these rules, contingent upon the payment of a fee to the third-party vendor for subscription purposes by the inmates' friends or family.

(b) Processing of Electronic Messages:

(A) Except as otherwise provided in these rules, electronic messages will be processed in the same manner and be subject to the same standards established in these rules for the sending, receipt, and processing of other inmate mail.

(B) Incoming electronic messages from subscribers will be processed by an approved third-party vendor and delivered electronically to department mail rooms for staff review, printing, and delivery to inmates. Outgoing electronic messages from inmates will be reviewed, scanned and processed by department mail room staff and forwarded to the approved third-party vendor for review, scanning, and posting on the vendor's website for access by subscribers.

(C) All electronic messages will be subject to regular mail inspection and examination; no electronic message will be afforded special processing by department staff as legal mail or official mail.

(D) In the event that an inmate is transferred from a Department of Corrections facility where electronic messaging is authorized to a facility where it is not, departmental mail room staff will forward incoming electronic messages to the inmate through the regular mail system for the remainder of the calendar month.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 179.040, 423.020, 423.030 & 423.075
Stats. Implemented: ORS 179.040, 423.020, 423.030 & 423.075
Hist.: CD 18(Temp), f. & ef. 12-18-73 thru 4-17-74; CD 22, f. 6-27-74, ef. 7-25-74; CD 1-1979, f. & ef. 1-4-79; Renumbered from 291-010-0300, CD 11-1980(Temp), f. & ef. 4-10-80; CD 16-1980(Temp), f. & ef. 4-18-80; CD 28-1980, f. & ef. 8-22-80; CD 22-1983(Temp), f. & ef. 6-3-83; CD 27-1983, f. & ef. 7-11-83; CD 57-1985, f. & ef. 8-16-85; CD 14-1988, f. & cert. ef. 10-7-88 (and corrected 10-25-88); CD 1-1992, f. & cert. ef. 1-29-92; CD 10-1993, f. 5-5-93, cert. ef. 7-1-93; DOC 20-1998, f. 9-22-98, cert. ef. 12-1-98; DOC 23-1998(Temp), f. & cert. ef. 12-23-98 thru 6-21-99; DOC 8-1999, f. 5-24-99, cert. ef. 6-1-99; DOC 20-2001, f. & cert. ef. 12-17-01; DOC 4-2002(Temp), f. & cert. ef. 3-25-02 thru 9-21-02; DOC 13-2002, f. 9-11-02 cert. ef. 9-20-02; DOC 16-2004(Temp), f. & cert. ef. 12-28-04 thru 6-26-05; DOC 7-2005, f. & cert. ef. 7-1-05; DOC 5-2007(Temp), f. & cert. ef. 8-1-07 thru 1-27-08; DOC 1-2008, f. & cert. ef. 1-25-08

291-131-0020

Outgoing Mail

(1) Outgoing mail must be written with lead or color pencil, pen, nontoxic markers or be typewritten or photocopied.

(2) Outgoing mail, except business mail to department officials in Central Administration sent through the intra departmental mail system, shall be enclosed in an approved DOC envelope with U.S. postage. The outside of the envelope shall contain only the inmate’s committed name, SID number, and return address, and the addressee's name and address, except official or legal mail labeled as such in accordance with OAR 291-131-0030. If the sender cannot be identified, the mail will be destroyed.

(3) Business mail to Department of Corrections officials in Central Administration shall require the inmate’s complete name, SID number, housing assignment, and return address and the official’s complete name and address.

(4) Outgoing electronic messages shall include the full name and address of the intended recipient and the name and SID number of the inmate sender.

(5) Inmates shall not send any item "prohibited from receipt by mail" as described under OAR 291-131-0035, except as authorized by the functional unit manager.

(6) Inmate-to-Inmate Correspondence:

(a) Inmates are authorized to correspond with other inmates if the correspondence is otherwise in compliance with department rules.

(A) Inmates may send only the following items to another inmate:

(i) Correspondence;

(ii) One drawing per envelope; and

(ii) One photograph per envelope.

(B) Inmates shall not send newspaper or magazine clippings, photocopies, printed web pages, or any other material not listed in subsection (A) above to another inmate through the mail.

(b) All inmate to inmate correspondence shall be routed through the U.S. Postal Service.

(c) Inmates shall not enclose correspondence other than from the inmate sender whose name and return address appears on the front of the envelope. Inmates shall not request another inmate to forward correspondence beyond the immediate addressee.

(d) Inmates shall not send a package to another inmate.

(7) Inmates shall not send correspondence or any item to themselves through the mail.

(8) Inmates shall not use electronic messaging to correspond with other inmates.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 179.040, 423.020, 423.030 & 423.075
Stats. Implemented: ORS 179.040, 423.020, 423.030 & 423.075
Hist.: CD 18(Temp), f. & ef. 12-18-73 thru 4-17-74; CD 22, f. 6-27-74, ef. 7-25-74; CD 1-1979, f. & ef. 1-4-79; Renumbered from 291-010-0305, CD 11-1980(Temp), f. & ef. 4-10-80; CD 16-1980(Temp), f. & ef. 4-18-80; CD 28-1980, f. & ef. 8-22-80; CD 22-1983(Temp), f. & ef. 6-3-83; CD 27-1983, f. & ef. 7-11-83; CD 57-1985, f. & ef. 8-16-85; CD 14-1988, f. & cert. ef. 10-7-88 (and corrected 10-25-88); CD 1-1992, f. & cert. ef. 1-29-92; CD 10-1993, f. 5-5-93, cert. ef. 7-1-93; DOC 20-1998, f. 9-22-98, cert. ef. 12-1-98; DOC 20-2001, f. & cert. ef. 12-17-01; DOC 13-2002, f. 9-11-02 cert. ef. 9-20-02; DOC 5-2007(Temp), f. & cert. ef. 8-1-07 thru 1-27-08; DOC 1-2008, f. & cert. ef. 1-25-08; DOC 4-2011(Temp), f. 3-4-11, cert. ef. 4-1-11 thru 9-28-11; DOC 15-2011, f. & cert. ef. 8-15-11

291-131-0021

Outgoing Mail Restriction

The department may prohibit an inmate from sending unwanted mail to a particular person or address when requested by the person or, in the case of a minor child, by the child's parent or legal guardian.

(1) A request for outgoing mail restriction may be made by writing to the functional unit manager or designee at the Department of Corrections facility where the inmate is incarcerated. The written request should include any information that would assist the functional unit manager or designee in determining whether to order the outgoing mail restriction.

(2) The functional unit manager or designee will notify the person requesting the outgoing mail restriction of his/her decision. The decision will be final, and will not be subject to administrative review. If an outgoing mail restriction is ordered, the inmate and the person requesting the outgoing mail restriction shall be provided with a copy of the Outgoing Mail Restriction Notice (CD 618d).

(3) Inmates may not request an outgoing mail restriction.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 179.040, 423.020, 423.030 & 423.075
Stats. Implemented: ORS 179.040, 423.020, 423.030 & 423.075
Hist.: DOC 20-2001, f. & cert. ef. 12-17-01, Renumbered from 291-131-0020(6)

291-131-0025

Incoming Mail

(1) Incoming mail shall require the sender's name and return address on the front of the envelope and shall be addressed to the inmate using only his/her committed name and SID number. Incoming electronic messages shall include the name and address of the sender as part of the message and the full name and SID number of the inmate recipient.

(a) Mail whose recipient cannot be identified because of incomplete name or number will be returned to the sender. A reasonable attempt will be made to identify the inmate recipient. If the inmate recipient cannot be positively identified, the mail will be returned to the sender.

(b) Mail with no return address or an incomplete name and return address shall be refused and returned to the U.S. Postal Service or other authorized mail service provider.

(c) The placement of the return address for international mail shall be in accordance with the sending country’s postal regulations.

(2) Incoming mail must be in pen, lead or color pencil, non-toxic markers or be typewritten or photocopied.

(3) Transfers:

(a) Incoming mail to inmates not residing in the receiving facility will be forwarded to the inmate if he/she resides at another Department of Corrections facility.

(b) Incoming mail for inmates temporarily transferred to another criminal justice agency will be held at the facility for seven consecutive days. If the inmate does not return to the facility within seven days, the facility will forward to the agency all accumulated and subsequent mail received at the facility. If the criminal justice agency refuses the forwarded mail, it will be held at the department facility until the inmate has been returned.

(4) Mail received for an inmate who has been released, discharged, or has escaped shall be refused and returned to the U.S. Postal Service or other authorized mail service provider.

(5) New and used books, magazines, and newspapers shall only be received directly from the publisher or distributor.

(a) Multiple copies of the same publication to an inmate shall be prohibited.

(b) Publications that have been previously rejected by the department and altered (i.e., offending pages removed) shall be prohibited.

(6) Inmates may receive catalogs, advertisements, brochures, promotional materials, pamphlets, sweepstakes, and contest materials solicited by the inmate provided the materials are properly addressed with the inmate’s full name and SID number and are received directly at the correct address of where the inmate is currently housed. These materials must conform to any content restrictions contained within this rule.

(7) No notice or administrative review will be provided to the sender or intended inmate recipient for mail refused under subsections (5)(a) and (b) or (6) of this rule.

(8) Packages, except books, magazines, and newspapers received directly from the publisher or distributor, require prior authorization from the functional unit manager or designee.

(9) Central Administration Review of Publications:

(a) Facility mailroom staff shall stamp approval of all accepted books, magazines and other publications (except newspapers) on the front or inside front cover of the publication, together with the inmate's name, SID number, date accepted, and the authorizing staff's signature. Books and magazines without the completed stamp on the front or inside the front cover shall be unauthorized and considered contraband.

(b) Unauthorized attachments, enclosures, merchandise, or materials in publications may be removed and destroyed to allow the publication to be delivered to the intended inmate recipient, if the publication is otherwise in compliance with these rules, and doing so would not drastically alter/destroy the publication.

(c) If mailroom staff determine a publication contains material that is prohibited under these or other department administrative rules, the violation notice and prohibited material shall be reviewed by a designated Central Administration official, who will either affirm, reverse or otherwise modify the original rejection decision in writing. The reviewing official shall not take part in any subsequent administrative review of the rejected publication under OAR 291-131-0050.

(10) General correspondence shall be authorized up to 1/4 inch thickness. Legal and official mail received directly from the original source shall be authorized up to three inches thick. Legal and official mail in excess of three inches shall require prior approval from the functional unit manager or designee.

(11) Unauthorized Attachments and Enclosures:

(a) Only the canceled postage stamp, address label, and return address stamp (if used) attached to the front of an envelope or package shall be glued, taped or otherwise affixed to an envelope or package, or its contents.

(b) Only written correspondence, newspaper and magazine clippings, small pamphlets, photocopies, carbon copies, business cards, hand made drawings, printed web pages, and photographs that meet the content restrictions in these rules may be enclosed in the envelope.

(A) Unauthorized items with minimal monetary value (e.g., paper clips, rubber bands, uncancelled stamps, book marks, envelopes, blank paper, etc.) may be removed and destroyed and the remaining mail sent to the inmate if the remaining contents are otherwise in compliance with department rules.

(B) Small pamphlets, photocopies, carbon copies and hand-made drawings shall be allowed provided the contents do not exceed the one fourth inch thickness limitation as specified in section (10) above.

(C) Newspaper and magazine clippings and photographs shall not exceed ten items for each category.

(D) Freestanding Nude or Partially Nude Images: Newspaper and magazine clippings, photocopies, printed web pages, drawings, photographs, and other media with nude or partially nude subjects, whether human or anime (i.e., cartoon), that depict or display male or female genitalia, pubic area or anus, or expose the female areola, may not be attached to or enclosed in correspondence to inmates.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 179.040, 423.020, 423.030 & 423.075
Stats. Implemented: ORS 179.040, 423.020, 423.030 & 423.075
Hist.: CD 18(Temp), f. & ef. 12-18-73 thru 4-17-74; CD 22, f. 6-27-74, ef. 7-25-74; CD 1-1979, f. & ef. 1-4-79; Renumbered from 291-010-0310, CD 11-1980(Temp), f. & ef. 4-10-80; CD 16-1980(Temp), f. & ef. 4-18-80; CD 28-1980, f. & ef. 8-22-80; CD 22-1983(Temp), f. & ef. 6-3-83; CD 27-1983, f. & ef. 7-11-83; CD 41-1983(Temp), f. & ef. 10-14-83; CD 13-1984, f. & ef. 4-11-84; CD 57-1985, f. & ef. 8-16-85; CD 14-1988, f. & cert. ef. 10-7-88 (and corrected 10-25-88); CD 1-1992, f. & cert. ef. 1-29-92; CD 10-1993, f. 5-5-93, cert. ef. 7-1-93; DOC 20-1998, f. 9-22-98, cert. ef. 12-1-98; DOC 12-2001(Temp) f. & cert. ef. 6-20-01 thru 12-17-01; DOC 20-2001, f. & cert. ef. 12-17-01; DOC 4-2002(Temp), f. & cert. ef. 3-25-02 thru 9-21-02; DOC 13-2002, f. 9-11-02 cert. ef. 9-20-02; DOC 5-2007(Temp), f. & cert. ef. 8-1-07 thru 1-27-08; DOC 1-2008, f. & cert. ef. 1-25-08; DOC 17-2008, f. 7-18-08, cert. ef. 7-21-08; DOC 4-2011(Temp), f. 3-4-11, cert. ef. 4-1-11 thru 9-28-11; DOC 15-2011, f. & cert. ef. 8-15-11

291-131-0030

Examination/Inspection of Legal and Official Mail

(1) Legal or official mail shall be afforded special processing as provided in subsections (2) and (3) of this rule.

(a) To qualify for special processing, mail which otherwise qualifies as legal or official mail under OAR 291-131-0010(13) or (17) must have affixed to the addressee side of the envelope or parcel the words "LEGAL MAIL" or "OFFICIAL MAIL", as appropriate. The "LEGAL MAIL" or "OFFICIAL MAIL" designation should be set apart from both the return address and the mailing address, and should be of sufficient size, to permit easy recognition by facility mailroom employees.

(b) Mail which otherwise qualifies as legal and official mail under OAR 291-131-010(13) or (17) but lacks the proper designation shall be processed as ordinary mail (i.e., shall be subject to inspection (e.g., opening, examination, reading or photocopying)) outside the inmate's presence.

(2) Legal and official mail sent from or received in a Department of Corrections facility in sealed envelopes or parcels shall be opened and examined for contraband in the presence of the inmate, but shall not be read or photocopied, except as authorized in subsection (3) of this rule.

(3) Legal and official mail may be inspected (i.e., opened, examined, read or photocopied) outside of the inmate's presence only when directed by the Department of Corrections facility functional unit manager or designee, and approved by the Assistant Director of Operations or the Inspector General, based on specific circumstances or specific information indicating that an inmate or other person has or may be in the process of violating provisions of law, department administrative rules, or may otherwise be engaged in activity which threatens or impairs the security, good order, or discipline of the facility and officials, staff, or inmates.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 179.040, 423.020, 423.030 & 423.075
Stats. Implemented: ORS 179.040, 423.020, 423.030 & 423.075
Hist.: CD 18(Temp), f. & ef. 12-18-73 thru 4-17-74; CD 22, f. 6-27-74, ef. 7-25-74; CD 1-1979, f. & ef. 1-4-79; CD 11-1980(Temp), f. & ef. 4-10-80; CD 16-1980(Temp), f. & ef. 4-18-80; CD 28-1980, f. & ef. 8-22-80; CD 22-1983(Temp), f. & ef. 6-3-83; CD 27-1983, f. & ef. 7-11-83; CD 57-1985, f. & ef. 8-16-85; CD 14-1988, f. & cert. ef. 10-7-88 (and corrected 10-25-88); CD 1-1992, f. & cert. ef. 1-29-92; CD 10-1993, f. 5-5-93, cert. ef. 7-1-93; DOC 20-1998, f. 9-22-98, cert. ef. 12-1-98; DOC 20-2001, f. & cert. ef. 12-17-01; DOC 1-2008, f. & cert. ef. 1-25-08

291-131-0035

Prohibited Mail

The following materials constitute prohibited mail which shall be confiscated or returned to the sender:

(1) Sexually Explicit Material:

(a) Sexually explicit material which by its nature or content poses a threat or is detrimental to the security, good order or discipline of the facility, inmate rehabilitation, or facilitates criminal activity including, but not limited to, the following:

(A) Sexual Acts or Behaviors:

(i) Portrayal of actual or simulated sexual acts or behaviors between human beings including, but not limited to, intercourse, sodomy, fellatio, cunnilingus or masturbation.

(ii) Portrayal of actual or simulated penetration of the vagina or anus, or contact between the mouth and the breast, genitals, or anus.

(iii) Portrayal of actual or simulated stimulation of the breast, genitals, or anus.

(iv) Portrayal of actual or simulated acts or threatened acts of force or violence in a sexual context, including, but not limited to, forcible intercourse (rape) or acts of sadomasochism emphasizing the infliction of pain.

(v) Portrayal of actual or simulated sexual acts or behaviors in which one of the participants is a minor, or appears to be under the age of 18.

(vi) Bestiality: Portrayal of actual or simulated sexual acts or behaviors between a human being and an animal.

(B) Excretory Functions: Portrayal of actual or simulated human excretory functions, including, but not limited to, urination, defecation, or ejaculation.

(C) Personal photographs in which the subject is nude; displays male or female genitalia, pubic area, or anus; or exposes the areola.

(D) Freestanding Nude or Partially Nude Images: Newspaper and magazine clippings, photocopies, printed web pages, drawings contained in incoming mail, and photographs, with nude or partially nude subjects, whether human or anime (i.e., cartoon), that depict or display male or female genitalia, pubic area or anus, or expose the female areola.

(b) No distinction shall be made between depictions of heterosexual and homosexual activity in applying these standards.

(c) Sexually explicit material does not include material of a news or information type, for example, publications covering the activities of gay rights or gay religious groups.

(d) Literary publications shall not be excluded solely because of homosexual themes or references, except for violations of these rules.

(e) Sexually explicit material may be admitted if it has scholarly value, or general social or literary value.

(2) Material That Threatens or is Detrimental to the Security, Safety, Health, Good Order or Discipline of the Facility, Inmate Rehabilitation, or Facilitates Criminal Activity: Material which by its nature or content poses a threat or is detrimental to the security, safety, health, good order or discipline of the facility, inmate rehabilitation, or facilitates criminal activity, including, but not limited to, material that meets one or more of the following criteria:

(a) It incites, advocates, aids or abets criminal activity such as illegal drug use, or instructs in the manufacture, use or conversion of weapons.

(b) It incites, advocates, aids or abets escape, such as picking locks or digging tunnels.

(c) It consists of threats of physical harm to any person or threats of criminal activity.

(d) It contains or concerns sending contraband within, into or out of the facility.

(e) It concerns plans for activities in violation of other Department of Corrections administrative directives.

(f) It contains code that directly threatens or is detrimental to the security, safety, health, good order, or discipline of the facility, inmate rehabilitation, or facilitates criminal activity.

(g) It contains information which, if communicated, would create a clear and present danger of violence and physical harm to a human being.

(h) It contains contraband material.

(i) It contains STG-related paraphernalia.

(j) It contains inflammatory material.

(k) It contains role-playing or similar fantasy games or materials.

(3) Credit or Deferred Billing Transactions: Mail involving credit or deferred billing (e.g., "bill me later" or "payment after delivery") transactions for the purchase of or subscription to publications (e.g., books, newspapers, magazines) or other items or merchandise is prohibited. Mail prohibited under this subsection includes:

(a) Outgoing inmate requests or purported agreements to enter into a credit or deferred billing transaction.

(b) Incoming publications or other items or merchandise, including promotions (e.g., free gift or premium) items given in exchange for purchase or subscription, received in a Department of Corrections facility which are accompanied by a billing or other statement requiring payment upon delivery or at a later date.

(4) Unauthorized Business Transactions: Mail involving a business transaction not previously approved by the functional unit manager or designee.

(5) Items Prohibited From Receipt by Mail:

(a) Any item or material which an inmate shall not possess within the Department of Corrections facility to which the inmate is assigned.

(b) Material which an inmate shall not possess within the facility or which meets one of the following criteria:

(A) Weapons or explosives;

(B) Narcotics or narcotics paraphernalia;

(C) Intoxicants or medications;

(D) Escape devices;

(E) Money, negotiable instruments, deposit and withdrawal slips, uncancelled stamps, and stamp collections;

(F) Any item larger than 18" x 18" except subscription newspapers;

(G) Any electronic items, including batteries;

(H) Any substance that is unauthorized, including lipstick, crayon, water colors, paint, correction fluid, etc.; or

(I) Polaroid type photographs with a chemical substance on the back of the photograph.

(6) Mail Subject to Outgoing Mail Restriction: Outgoing mail to a person or address to which the inmate has been ordered by the functional unit manager or designee not to send mail.

(7) Any other material that the department deems to pose a threat or to be detrimental to legitimate penological objectives.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 179.040, 423.020, 423.030 & 423.075
Stats. Implemented: ORS 179.040, 423.020, 423.030 & 423.075
Hist.: CD 18(Temp), f. & ef. 12-18-73 through 4-17-74; CD 22, f. 6-27-74, ef. 7-25-74; CD 1-1979, f. & ef. 1-4-79; Renumbered from 291-010-0315, CD 11-1980(Temp), f. & ef. 4-10-80; CD 16-1980(Temp), f. & ef. 4-18-80; CD 28-1980, f. & ef. 8-22-80; CD 22-1983(Temp), f. & ef. 6-3-83; CD 27-1983, f. & ef. 7-11-83; CD 13-1984, f. & ef. 4-11-84; CD 57-1985, f. & ef. 8-16-85; CD 14-1988, f. & cert. ef. 10-7-88 (and corrected 10-25-88); CD 1-1992, f. & cert. ef. 1-29-92; CD 10-1993, f. 5-5-93, cert. ef. 7-1-93; DOC 20-1998, f. 9-22-98, cert. ef. 12-1-98; DOC 16-2001(Temp), f. 7-9-01, cert. ef. 7-11-01 thru 1-7-02; DOC 20-2001, f. & cert. ef. 12-17-01; DOC 13-2002, f. 9-11-02 cert. ef. 9-20-02; DOC 1-2008, f. & cert. ef. 1-25-08; DOC 4-2011(Temp), f. 3-4-11, cert. ef. 4-1-11 thru 9-28-11; DOC 15-2011, f. & cert. ef. 8-15-11

291-131-0037

Disposition of Prohibited Mail

(1) Mail, if not confiscated, will be returned to the U.S. Postal Service, or to the applicable mail service provider for not meeting requirements provided in these rules.

(2) Contraband:

(a) Illegal contraband or evidence of crime shall be confiscated and turned over to the Oregon State Police. No notice of confiscation shall be given.

(b) Non-Inmate Sender:

(A) Contraband (including unauthorized attachments or enclosures) not illegal or evidence of crime shall be returned to the non inmate sender with the contents of the envelope or package intact, together with a Mail Violation Notice (CD 618a).

(B) Unauthorized items with minimal monetary value (e.g., paper clips, rubber bands, uncancelled stamps, book marks, envelopes, blank paper, etc.) may be removed and destroyed and the remaining mail sent to the inmate if the remaining contents are otherwise in compliance with department rules. No notice shall be provided to the sender or inmate recipient for the removal and destruction of minimally valued items.

(c) Inmate Sender: Any enclosures (i.e., photographs, hand-made drawings in excess of that allowed) that are not illegal or evidence of crime, or that are otherwise not prohibited in outgoing mail under these rules shall be returned to the inmate sender with the contents of the envelope or package intact, together with a Mail Violation Notice (CD 618a). Any item that poses a threat or is a detriment to the security, good order, or discipline of the facility, or that would encourage or instruct in criminal activity, may be confiscated and retained pending an investigation. If appropriate, the inmate may be issued a misconduct report, in accordance with the rule on Prohibited Inmate Conduct and Processing Disciplinary Actions (OAR 291-105).

(3) Money:

(a) Cash contained in mail shall be confiscated and deposited to the Inmate Welfare Fund. Notice of the confiscation shall be provided to the sender on a Mail Confiscation Notice (CD 618b). A copy of the notice shall also be provided to the intended inmate recipient.

(A) If the cash was concealed in the mail, a written entry shall be made on the Mail Confiscation Notice (CD 618b) to document the method of concealment. If, after an administrative review of the confiscation, it is determined that the sender did not conceal the cash, the money shall be returned to the sender.

(B) Correspondence received in an envelope from which cash has been confiscated shall be delivered to the intended inmate recipient if the correspondence is otherwise in compliance with department rules.

(b) Monies other than cash (e.g., money orders, warrants, personal checks, withdrawal and deposit slips, and certified checks) contained in mail shall be returned to the sender with the contents of the envelope or package intact, together with a Mail Violation Notice (CD 618a). A copy of the Mail Violation Notice shall be provided to the intended inmate recipient.

(A) Prior to returning the mail to the sender, the offending money item shall be photocopied together with the addressee side of the envelope or package.

(B) The photocopy shall be retained by the facility according to archive standards.

(4) Mail with unauthorized or insufficient postage shall be refused and returned to the U.S. Postal Service. Notice of the reason(s) for the mail rejection shall be provided on a form label or stamp affixed to the outside of the envelope or package.

(5) Unauthorized Attachments or Enclosures:

(a) Mail received with unauthorized attachment(s) affixed to the outside of an envelope or package shall remain unopened, be refused and returned to the U.S. Postal Service or applicable mail service provider. Notice of the reason(s) for the mail rejection shall be provided on a form label or stamp affixed to the outside of the envelope or package.

(b) Mail received with unauthorized attachments affixed to the inside of an envelope or package or affixed to the contents of an envelope or package, or mail received with unauthorized enclosure(s), except for that with minimal monetary value as described in section (2)(b) above, shall be refused and returned to the sender with the contents of the envelope or package intact, together with a Mail Violation Notice.

(6) Correspondence and Publications: When, after opening, mail is rejected for violation of these or other department rules the following procedures shall be followed:

(a) Rejected Mail:

(A) Non-inmate sender: The sender and intended inmate recipient shall be notified of the rejection of mail, including the reasons, on a Mail Violation Notice (CD 618a) for correspondence, or a Publication Violation Notice for a publication. If the rejection is based upon written or pictorial content, the notice shall advise that an independent review of the rejection may be obtained by writing to the functional unit manager within 30 days of the date of the notice. Mail rejected based on written or pictorial content shall be returned intact to the sender. The rejected portion(s) of the mail shall be photocopied and retained pending any administrative review. If no administrative review is requested, the photocopy shall be maintained according to archive standards.

(B) Inmate Sender: The inmate sender shall receive the same standards as the non-inmate sender, however, the intended recipient shall not be notified of the rejection for any mail sent by an inmate in a Department of Corrections facility and shall not be eligible for an administrative review.

(b) No administrative review shall be available if the rejection is based on the presence of an unauthorized attachment, substance or enclosure on or with the mail, or if the rejection is based on any violation not related to the written or pictorial content.

(c) Confiscated Mail:

(A) Non-inmate Sender: If the mail is confiscated, notice shall be made to the sender and intended inmate recipient on a Mail Confiscation Notice (CD 618b), unless it includes plans for a discussion or commission of a crime or evidence of a crime. In such cases, no notice shall be given and the mail shall be turned over to the Special Investigations Unit of the department or the Oregon State Police. Confiscated mail not involving evidence of a crime shall be retained intact pending any administrative review. If no administrative review is requested, the mail shall be maintained according to archive standards.

(B) Inmate Sender: If the mail is confiscated, no notice shall be given to the sender or the intended inmate recipient. Mail which includes plans for a discussion or commission of a crime or evidence of a crime shall be turned over to the Special Investigations Unit of the department or the Oregon State Police. Confiscated mail which poses a threat or detriment to the security, good order, or discipline of the facility, or would encourage or instruct in criminal activity shall be retained intact pending an investigation. The inmate may be issued a misconduct report in accordance with the rule on Prohibited Inmate Conduct and Processing Disciplinary Actions (OAR 291-105). Otherwise, after the investigation is completed, the inmate will be notified of the confiscation. If no administrative review is requested, the mail shall be maintained according to archive standards.

(7) Packages: When a package is rejected, the following procedures shall be followed:

(a) Packages received without prior authorization of the functional unit manager or designee, or which have unauthorized attachments affixed to the outside of the package shall be refused and returned to the U.S. Postal Service or to the applicable mail service provider.

(b) Prior authorized packages which after opening are found to contain contraband not illegal (including unauthorized attachments or enclosures) or evidence of crime or otherwise to be in violation of these or other department rules, shall be returned to the sender with the contents of the package intact, together with a Mail Violation Notice.

(c) Intended Inmate Recipient: If a prior authorized package is returned to the sender after opening, the intended inmate recipient shall be promptly notified in writing of the rejection, along with the reason(s) for the rejection, on a Mail Violation Notice. No administrative review shall be available to the intended inmate recipient.

(d) Sender: The sender shall be notified in writing of the rejection of any package received in a Department of Corrections facility and addressed to an inmate, along with the reason(s) for rejection, on a form label or stamp affixed to the outside of the package if the package is refused without opening or; if the package is returned to the sender after opening, on a Mail Violation Notice inserted into the package. No administrative review shall be available to the sender.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 179.040, 423.020, 423.030 & 423.075
Stats. Implemented: ORS 179.040, 423.020, 423.030 & 423.075
Hist.: CD 14-1988, f. & cert. ef. 10-7-88 (and corrected 10-25-88); CD 1-1992, f. & cert. ef. 1-29-92; CD 10-1993, f. 5-5-93, cert. ef. 7-1-93; CD 25-1994, f. 12-21-94, cert. ef. 1-3-95; DOC 20-1998, f. 9-22-98, cert. ef. 12-1-98; DOC 20-2001, f. & cert. ef. 12-17-01; DOC 4-2002(Temp), f. & cert. ef. 3-25-02 thru 9-21-02; DOC 13-2002, f. 9-11-02 cert. ef. 9-20-02; DOC 1-2008, f. & cert. ef. 1-25-08; DOC 4-2011(Temp), f. 3-4-11, cert. ef. 4-1-11 thru 9-28-11; DOC 15-2011, f. & cert. ef. 8-15-11

 

291-131-0050

Administrative Review

(1) Correspondence and Publications:

(a) Non-Inmate Sender:

(A) A non-inmate sender who has received a mail violation, publication violation, or confiscation notice for written or pictorial content may obtain an independent review of the rejection of mail by writing to the functional unit manager or designee and requesting an administrative review within 30 days of the date of the notice. The review request shall specify in writing the reason(s) why the rejection should not be sustained and include the rejection notice. The rejected mail if returned to the sender must be submitted with the violation or confiscation notice along with the review request.

(B) An intended inmate recipient who has received a mail violation, publication violation or confiscation notice for written or pictorial content may obtain an independent review by writing to the function unit manager or designee and requesting an administrative review within 30 days of the date of the notice. The review request shall specify type of violation (mail, publication, confiscation), date of violation, and name and issue date of any involved publication.

(b) Inmate Sender: An inmate sender who has received a mail violation or confiscation notice for written or pictorial content may obtain an independent review with the same provisions as a non-inmate sender. The intended recipient shall not be eligible for an administrative review.

(c) No administrative review shall be afforded if the rejection is based on the presence of an unauthorized attachment, substance or enclosure on or with the mail, or if the rejection is based on any violation not related to the written or pictorial content.

(2) Packages: No administrative review shall be available to the sender or intended inmate recipient of a package.

(3) Administrative Review Process:

(a) The functional unit manager shall appoint an official or employee, other than the employee who originally rejected the correspondence or publication, to conduct the administrative review.

(b)The administrative review shall consist of an informal review of the original mail rejection decision and shall include a review of the mail or publication violation or confiscation notice, the request for administrative review, and where necessary, the rejected mail, article(s) or material(s) for compliance with department rules. No formal hearing shall be conducted.

(c) The functional unit manager or designee shall permit the intended inmate recipient an opportunity to review the rejected mail for purposes of administrative review, unless such review may provide the inmate with information of a nature which is deemed to pose a threat or detriment to the security, good order or discipline of the facility or to encourage or instruct in criminal activity.

(A) The intended inmate recipient shall specify in writing the reason(s) why the rejection should not be sustained within five days after reviewing the rejected material, or within five days of receiving notice that the inmate was not allowed to review the rejected material for the reasons stated above.

(B) If the inmate refuses to review the material, the administrative review will be considered dismissed.

(d) The official or employee assigned to review the original mail rejection decision shall deliver a written recommended decision (together with a copy of the mail or publication violation or confiscation notice, the request for administrative review, and where necessary, the rejected mail, article(s) and material(s)) to the functional unit manager or designee for his/her review and approval.

(e) The functional unit manager or designee shall review the recommended decision and either affirm, reverse or otherwise modify the original mail rejection decision in writing. The administrative review shall be completed within 45 days after receipt of the request for administrative review. A copy of the functional unit manager or designee's decision shall be provided to the party(ies) who requested the administrative review.

[ED. NOTE: Forms referenced in this rule are available from the agency.]

Stat. Auth.: ORS 179.040, ORS 423.020, ORS 423.030 & ORS 423.075
Stats. Implemented: ORS 179.040, ORS 423.020, ORS 423.030 & ORS 423.075
Hist.: CD 10-1993, f. 5-5-93, cert. ef. 7-1-93; CD 25-1994, f. 12-21-94, cert. ef. 1-3-95; DOC 20-1998, f. 9-22-98, cert. ef. 12-1-98; DOC 23-1998, f. & cert. ef. 12-23-98 thru 6-21-99; DOC 8-1999, f. 5-24-99, cert. ef. 6-1-99; DOC 20-2001, f. & cert. ef. 12-17-01

The official copy of an Oregon Administrative Rule is contained in the Administrative Order filed at the Archives Division, 800 Summer St. NE, Salem, Oregon 97310. Any discrepancies with the published version are satisfied in favor of the Administrative Order. The Oregon Administrative Rules and the Oregon Bulletin are copyrighted by the Oregon Secretary of State. Terms and Conditions of Use

Oregon Secretary of State • 136 State Capitol • Salem, OR 97310-0722
Phone: (503) 986-1523 • Fax: (503) 986-1616 • oregon.sos@state.or.us

© 2013 State of Oregon All Rights Reserved​