With Early Sellout Likely, Mint Director Emphasizes Commitment to Fairness

Washington, D.C. — Mint Director Philip N. Diehl today announced order processing procedures for the Botanic Garden Coinage & Currency Set to ensure equitable treatment of customers placing orders for the limited edition.

“We have put in place a system to ensure that our collectors have a fair and equal opportunity to obtain the set,” said Diehl. “In short, we will monitor the volume of orders received, and the number of sets per order, and if necessary, limit the number of sets per order to ensure that as many customers as possible will have a chance to buy this very popular product.

Because a sellout is likely in a very short period of time, strict guidelines for order processing are being followed so that orders are processed in the order in which they are received, and to ensure that no customer is able to acquire an inordinate share of this limited edition.”

The following procedures are being followed:

* No orders will be accepted with a postmark earlier than February 21, 1997, the release date of the order forms for the U.S. Botanic Garden Coin Program. Nor will orders for the Coinage & Currency Set be accepted by telephone or fax. Orders postmarked prior to February 21 are being returned to customers.
* All orders will be examined for postmarks and sorted by the date and time the order was received. Mail is picked up 12 times daily from the U.S. Postal Service in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where Mint orders are processed by Mellon Bank.
* Any orders received by letter at the Mint=s Customer Service Center in Lanham, Maryland, will be time and date stamped and placed in sequence with orders received at the same time at Mellon Bank.
* Orders for Coinage & Currency Sets will not be accepted for processing until a review has been completed and a decision made on whether to limit the number of sets per order. After a decision is made, orders will then be processed in the sequence in which they were received.
* If sets are limited, orders will be accepted up to the limit. For example, if a limit of five sets per order is established, a customer who orders ten sets will have his order reduced to five. Credit card charges will be adjusted accordingly. Customers who have paid by check will be issued a refund.
* Letters will be sent to all customers who order the Botanic Garden Coinage & Currency Set to let them know the status of their order.
* Please note that the procedures outlined above do not apply to other U.S. Botanic Garden Coin options. Of special note, the Prestige Set, with a limited edition of 80,000 sets, is the final set of the Prestige series to be offered by the U.S. Mint The pre-issue period ends April 4, and the Mint will accept telephone orders for the Proof Silver Dollar, the Uncirculated Silver Dollar and the Prestige Set at 1-800-MINT-USA.

Contact:
Press inquiries: Michael White (202) 354-7222
Customer Service information: (800) USA MINT (872-6468)