Resolving MailStream Plus job getting error with March 2015 PRF files - "One or more required .csm Actual Postal Codes are blank" and/or the error "One or more CSM-1167 locale keys blank, LOCY00000 used".

Product affected: MailStream Plus™, all platforms, all versions


MailStream Plus (MSP) is sometimes not able to look up Locale Keys or Postal Codes (i.e. ZIP Codes) for mailing entry points, and that results in an error about the Postal Codes (i.e. ZIP Codes) - “One or more required .csm Actual Postal Codes are blank” (Field Code CSM-1168) and/or the error "One or more CSM-1167 locale keys blank, LOCY00000 used".
This particularly happens more often with First-Class mailings.

For one mailer's particular First-Class mailings at certain entry facilities, the error did not occur with the February 2015 and earlier Postal Reference File (PRF) data.


Some of the information that goes into the Mail.dat CSM file such as the Entry Facility’s Locale Key, and the Entry Facility’s Actual ZIP Code, are determined from the USPS’s MAILDIRECTION2 FAST file's data.
Because of changes with the USPS March 2015 data in regard to specific entry points (changes that are also in the April data), for certain entry facilities MailStream Plus (MSP) is no longer able to determine the values and that results in the error(s).
This variation in the USPS data is also one of the reasons that in general for some entry points MSP *can* look up the data, and for some entry points it can't.


UPDATED: March 14, 2019
To resolve this problem, the job will need to use xx INF parameter(s) to tell MSP the Locale Key and/or ZIP Code information of the Entry Facility.
For the specific error about the Entry Facility’s ZIP Code not being found, an RP INF MDMFEP parameter (or EP INFs if you have multiple entry points in a job) can be used to tell MSP the 9-byte ZIP/ZIP+4 to use. 
RP INF                     MDMFEP         nnnnnnnnn
(replace the nnnnnnnnn with the 9-byte ZIP Code of the actual entry facility(s).)
But also an additional concern is that in some cases the Locale Key field in the CSM file will be getting “ORIGIN”.  And the USPS sometimes requires the entry facility's Locale Key be used instead of "ORIGIN".
If this occurs it may be best for the mailer to verify whether their specific jobs need the Locale Key, either with their local USPS Clerk, or with the PostalOne! HelpDesk at 800-522-9085.
FYI- If the Locale Key is entered into MSP, then the ZIP Code does not need to be entered with MDMFEP, because with the Locale Key MSP is then able to lookup the ZIP Code.  
To enter the Drop Site Key, you use a RP INF (or EP INFs) with sub keyword DRPKEY like this-
RP INF                     DRPKEY xxxxxxx
(replace the xxxxxxx with the 7-byte Facility Drop Site Key from the USPS.)
Note: The 7-byte Drop Site Key gets the first byte removed by MailStream Plus, and then 'LOC' is added to front, to make the Locale key that goes into the Mail.dat CSM file in Field Code CSM-1167.
If you do Palletization in an MSP job, you enter the Palletization Drop Site Key with RP INF (or EP INFs) using sub keyword PLTKEY, like this-
RP INF                     PLTKEY yyyyyyy
(replace the yyyyyyy with the 7-byte palletization Drop Site Key)
Where do you find Drop Site Keys?
You can look up the Drop Site Key in the USPS FAST files on-line.  There is a separate KB article on how to do that called “Where do you find the locale key/USPS Facility Drop Site Key information to populate the MailStream Plus DRPKEY and PLTKEY sub keywords?“.
But the simplest method may be to call the Entry Facility and ask them for the information. 
Please note- the USPS does occasionally change a facility’s Locale Key (one of the reasons the USPS regularly puts out new FAST files), so you want to make sure jobs are always using the current one.