2006 Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council Set-Aside Program, 20104-20107 [05-7722]

Download as PDF 20104 Federal Register / Vol. 70, No. 73 / Monday, April 18, 2005 / Notices Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20230. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background On December 10, 2001, the Department of Commerce (the Department) published a countervailing duty order on honey from Argentina. See Notice of Countervailing Duty Orders: Honey from Argentina, 66 FR 63673 (December 10, 2001). On December 30, 2004, Petitioners requested an administrative review of the countervailing duty order for honey from Argentina produced/exported during the period January 1, 2004, through December 31, 2004. In accordance with 19 CFR 351.221(c)(1)(i), we published a notice of initiation of the review on January 31, 2004. See Initiation Notice. On February 22, 2005, Petitioners withdrew their request for review. Rescission of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review The Department’s regulations at 19 CFR 351.213(d)(1) provide that the Department will rescind an administrative review if a party that requested a review withdraws the request within 90 days of the date of publication of the notice of initiation of the requested review. Petitioners withdrew their request for an administrative review on February 22, 2005, which is within the 90-day deadline. No other party requested a review of the order. Therefore, the Department is rescinding this administrative review for the period January 1, 2004, through December 31, 2004. The Department will instruct U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to liquidate shipments of honey from Argentina entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption on or after January 1, 2004 and on or before December 31, 2004 at the cash deposit rate in effect on the date of entry. Notification This notice also serves as a reminder to parties subject to administrative protective orders (APO) of their responsibility concerning the disposition of proprietary information disclosed under APO in accordance with 19 CFR 351.305(a)(3) of the Department’s regulations. Timely written notification of the return/ destruction of APO material or conversion to judicial protective order is hereby requested. Failure to comply with the regulations and terms of an APO is a violation which is subject to sanctions. VerDate jul<14>2003 16:08 Apr 15, 2005 Jkt 205001 This notice is issued and published in accordance with 19 CFR 351.213(d)(4) and sections 751(a)(1) and 777(i)(1) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended. Dated: April 11, 2005. Barbara E. Tillman, Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for Import Administration. [FR Doc. E5–1811 Filed 4–15–05; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–DS–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration the Government of Mexico established Rules of Procedure for Article 1904 Binational Panel Reviews (‘‘Rules’’). These Rules were published in the Federal Register on February 23, 1994 (59 FR 8686). The panel review in this matter was requested and stayed pursuant to these Rules. The previous notice of stay is withdrawn. Dated: April 12, 2005. Caratina L. Alston, United States Secretary, NAFTA Secretariat. [FR Doc. E5–1801 Filed 4–15–05; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–P North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), Article 1904 Binational Panel Reviews: Corrected Notice of Stay of Panel Review DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE NAFTA Secretariat, United States Section, International Trade Administration, Department of Commerce. ACTION: Corrected Notice of Stay of the Determination Under Section 129(a)(4) of the Uruguay Round Agreements Act made by the International Trade Commission, respecting Softwood Lumber Products from Canada (Secretariat File No. USA–CDA–2005– 1904–03). [Docket No. 050318079–5079–01; I.D. 041205E] SUMMARY: Pursuant to the Notice of Consent Motion to Stay Panel Proceedings by the complainants, the panel review is stayed pending the outcome of the ongoing Extraordinary Challenge Committee proceeding. A panel has not been appointed to this panel review. This panel review is stayed as of March 22, 2005. The previous notice is withdrawn. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Caratina L. Alston, United States Secretary, NAFTA Secretariat, Suite 2061, 14th and Constitution Avenue, Washington, DC 20230, (202) 482–5438. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Chapter 19 of the North American Free-Trade Agreement (‘‘Agreement’’) establishes a mechanism to replace domestic judicial review of final determinations in antidumping and countervailing duty cases involving imports from a NAFTA country with review by independent binational panels. When a Request for Panel Review is filed, a panel is established to act in place of national courts to review expeditiously the final determination to determine whether it conforms with the antidumping or countervailing duty law of the country that made the determination. Under Article 1904 of the Agreement, which came into force on January 1, 1994, the Government of the United States, the Government of Canada and SUMMARY: NMFS announces that for fishing year 2006 (January 1- December 31, 2006) the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) may set aside up to 3 percent of the total allowable landings (TAL) in certain Mid-Atlantic fisheries to be used for research endeavors under a research setaside (RSA) program. NMFS is soliciting proposals for research activities concerning the summer flounder, scup, black sea bass, Loligo squid, Illex squid, Atlantic mackerel, butterfish, bluefish, and tilefish fisheries. Projects funded under an RSA allocation (or award) must enhance the understanding of the fishery resource or contribute to the body of information on which management decisions are made. DATES: Applications must be received on or before 5 p.m. eastern standard time on May 18, 2005. ADDRESSES: Electronic application submissions must be transmitted on-line through http://www.grants.gov. Paper applications must be sent to NMFS, Northeast Regional Office, One Blackburn Drive, Gloucester, MA 01930. Complete information about this program and application instructions are contained in the Federal Funding Opportunity notice at http:// www.grants.gov. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Additional information may be obtained AGENCY: PO 00000 Frm 00004 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648–AS32 2006 Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council Set-Aside Program National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Commerce. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: E:\FR\FM\18APN1.SGM 18APN1 20105 Federal Register / Vol. 70, No. 73 / Monday, April 18, 2005 / Notices from: Daniel Furlong, Executive Director, Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council, by phone 302– 674–2331 ext. 19, or by fax 302–674– 5399; Shannon Lyons, Assistant Fishery Plan Coordinator, Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council, by phone 302– 674–2331 ext. 11, or by email at slyons@mafmc.org; or Paul Perra, Fishery Policy Analyst, NMFS, Northeast Regional Office, One Blackburn Drive, Gloucester, MA 01930, by phone 978–281–9153, by fax 978– 281–9135, or by e-mail at paul.perra@noaa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Electronic Access: Application information is available at www.grants.gov. Electronic copies of the Standard Forms for submission of research proposals may be found on the Internet in a PDF (Portable Document Format) version at http:// www.rdc.noaa.gov/%7Egrants/ appkit.html under the title ‘‘Grants Management Division- Application Toolkit.’’ Applicants without Internet access can contact Rich Maney, NMFS, Northeast Regional Office, One Blackburn Drive, Gloucester, MA 01930, or by phone 978–281–9265, by fax 978– 281–9117, or by e-mail at rich.maney@noaa.gov. Program Description The RSA program provides a mechanism to fund research and compensate vessel owners through the sale of fish harvested under the research quota. Vessels participating in an approved research project may be authorized by the Northeast Regional Administrator, NMFS, to harvest and to land species in excess of any imposed trip limit or during fishery closures. Landings from such trips are sold to generate funds that help defray the costs associated with research projects. No Federal funds are provided for research under this notification. NMFS and the Council will give priority to funding research proposals in the following general subject areas: (1) Bycatch and discard reduction; (2) mesh and gear selectivity; (3) fishing impact on habitat; (4) cooperative stock assessment surveys; (5) improved recreational fishery data; (6) tagging studies; and (7) other research relevant to the MidAtlantic fisheries as further discussed in the full funding opportunity announcement, found at the Grants.Gov web site. Funding Availability No Federal funds are provided for research under this notification, but rather the opportunity to fish with the catch sold to generate income. The Federal Government may issue an Experimental Fishing Permit (EFP) or Letter of Acknowledgment (LOA), as applicable, which may provide special fishing privileges in response to research proposals selected under this program. The Federal Government shall not be liable for any costs incurred in the conduct of the project. In the past two to five awards have been issued. During the 2004 fishing year, the income generated ranged from $37,210 to $227,507, with an average of $120,652. Funds generated from the RSA landings shall be used to cover the cost of the research activities, including vessel costs, and to compensate boats for expenses incurred during the collection of the set-aside species. For example, the funds may be used to pay for gear modifications, monitoring equipment, additional provisions (e.g., fuel, ice, food for scientists), or the salaries of research personnel. The Federal Government is not liable for any costs incurred by the researcher or vessel owner should the sale of the excess catch not fully reimburse the researcher or vessel owner for his/her expenses. The Council, in consultation with the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, will incorporate the level of RSA (amounts or percentages) for each of the set-aside species for the 2006 fishing year into the Council’s recommendations for annual quota specifications. NMFS will consider the recommended level of RSA as part of the associated rulemaking process. The actual level of RSA quota available to applicants for the 2006 fishing year will depend on the TAL level specified by the Council at its quota-setting meetings in June and August 2005, and the percentage (0 to 3 percent) of the TAL recommended by the Council and approved by NMFS as the level of RSA available for 2006. To help researchers develop proposals for the 2006 fishing year, the Table 1 (below) provides guidance on the general magnitude of RSA and estimated values that a researcher might expect to be available for fishing year 2006. Table 1 is based on proposed RSA levels available and the actual allocated RSA amounts for these fisheries for the 2005 fishing year. The table is intended only as a guide, to be used when developing research proposals for the 2006 fishing year; it does not necessarily reflect the actual RSA quota that will be allocated for fishing year 2006. Based on Council recommendations, NMFS may choose to adopt less than 3 percent of TAL as a set-aside, or decide not to adopt any set-aside for a given fishery. The estimated values of the set-aside allocations will vary depending on market considerations prevailing at the time the research trips are conducted. In October 2002, the Council voted to set the RSA for tilefish at zero until a completed stock assessment exists. However, tilefish RSA projects may be considered upon the completion of a stock assessment and/or by utilizing RSA quota from other species. The 2006 final specifications used to determine the amount of set-aside for each species will be published separately. TABLE 1. EXAMPLES OF RSA AMOUNTS BASED ON 2005 FMP SPECIFICATIONS Allocation Species Amount Available* (lb) 2005 RSA Amount (lb) Summer Flounder 909,000 Scup 495,000 Black Sea Bass 246,000 Loligo Squid 1,124,357 Illex Squid 1,797,328 Atlantic Mackerel 7,605,948 Butterfish 111,179 Bluefish 925,590 Tilefish 0 *Amount available based on proposed 2005 FMP specifications. VerDate jul<14>2003 16:08 Apr 15, 2005 Jkt 205001 PO 00000 Frm 00005 Fmt 4703 2005 RSA Est. Value 353,917 303,675 109,500 502,350 none requested none requested none requested 363,677 0 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\18APN1.SGM 18APN1 $569,806 $182,205 $221,190 $378,250 NA NA NA $105,466 NA 20106 Federal Register / Vol. 70, No. 73 / Monday, April 18, 2005 / Notices Projects funded under an RSA allocation (or award) must enhance understanding of the fishery resource or contribute to the body of information on which management decisions are made. Research and additional fishing voyages to obtain fish for compensation, may be conducted as specified in the EFP or LOA, as applicable, in or outside of a closed area, within the time frame of a commercial quota closure, and onboard a fishing or other type of vessel including recreational and/or commercial vessels. The Council and NMFS will give priority to funding research proposals in areas identified as research priorities by the Council and Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (Commission) for the 2006 fishing year. Statutory Authority Grants are issued pursuant to sections 303(b)(11), 402(e), and 404(c) of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, 16 U.S.C. 1853(b)(11), 16 U.S.C. 1881a(e), and 16 U.S.C. 1881(c), respectively. Eligibility Eligible applicants are institutions of higher education, hospitals, other nonprofits, commercial organizations, individuals, State, local and Native American tribal governments. Federal agencies and institutions are not eligible to receive Federal assistance under this notice. Additionally, employees of any Federal agency or Regional Fishery Management Council are ineligible to submit an application under this program. However, Council members who are not Federal employees may submit an application. DOC/NOAA supports cultural and gender diversity and encourages women and minority individuals and groups to submit applications to the RSA program. In addition DOC/NOAA is strongly committed to broadening the participation of historically black colleges and universities, Hispanic serving institutions, tribal colleges and universities, and institutions that work in underserved areas. DOC/NOAA encourages proposals involving any of the above institutions. DOC/NOAA encourages applications from members of the fishing community and applications that involve fishing community cooperation and participation. Cost Sharing Requirements None required. VerDate jul<14>2003 16:08 Apr 15, 2005 2. Balance/distribution of funds: a. Geographically NMFS will solicit written technical b. By type of institutions evaluations from the Council members who make up the Research Set-Aside c. By type of partners Committee (Committee) and three or d. By research areas more appropriate private and public e. By project types sector experts to determine the technical 3. Whether this project duplicates merit of the proposal and to provide a other projects funded or considered for rank score of the project based on the funding by NOAA or other federal criteria described in the Evaluation agencies. Criteria section of this document. 4. Program priorities and policy Following completion of the technical factors. evaluation, NMFS will convene a review panel, including the Committee 5. Applicant’s prior award and technical experts, to review and performance. individually critique the scored 6. Partnerships and/or participation of proposals to enhance NOAA’s targeted groups. understanding of the proposals. Initial 7. Adequacy of information necessary successful applicants may be required, to conduct a NEPA analysis and in consultation with NMFS, to further determination. refine/modify the study methodology as Key program policy factors (see 4 a condition of project approval. No above) to be considered by the Selecting consensus recommendations will be Official are: (1) The time of year the made by the Committee members, research activities are to be conducted; technical experts, or by the review (2) the ability of the proposal to meet panel. the applicable experimental fishery Evaluation Criteria requirements; (3) redundancy of 1. Importance and/or relevance of the research projects; and (4) logistical concerns. Therefore, the highest scoring proposed project: This criterion projects may not necessarily be selected ascertains whether there is intrinsic for an award. All approved research value in the proposed work and/or must be conducted in accordance with relevance to NOAA, Federal, regional, provisions approved by NOAA and state or local activities. (25 points) provided in an LOA or EFP issued by 2. Technical/scientific merit: This criterion assesses whether the approach NMFS. Unsuccessful applications will be returned to the submitter. Successful is technically sound and/or innovative, applications will be incorporated into if the methods are appropriate, and whether there are clear project goals and the award document. For proposals that request exemptions objectives. (25 points) 3. Overall qualifications of the project: from existing regulations (e.g., possession limits, closed seasons), the This criterion assesses whether the impacts of the proposed exemptions applicant, and team members, possess must be analyzed. The Council will the necessary education, experience, analyze these impacts as part of the training, facilities and administrative resources to accomplish the project. (15 impacts of the proposed specifications for the upcoming fishing year in the points) annual quota specification packages it 4. Project costs: This criterion submits to NMFS. However, those evaluates the budget to determine if it individuals with proposals that include is realistic and commensurate with the vessel activities extending beyond the project needs and time frame. (25 scope of the analysis provided by the points) Council may be required to provide 5. Outreach and education: This additional analysis before issuance of an criterion assesses whether the project EFP. Applicants who request regulatory involves a focused and effective exemptions beyond the scope of the education and outreach strategy Council analysis may be required to regarding NOAA’s mission to protect adhere to the regulations governing the the Nation’s natural resources. (10 issuance of an EFP by NMFS. As points) The merit review ratings shall provide appropriate, NMFS will consult with a rank order to the Selecting Official for the Council and successful applicants to secure the information required for final funding recommendations. The granting an exemption if issuance of an Selecting Official shall award in the EFP is necessary for the research to be rank order unless the proposal is justified to be selected out of rank order conducted. No research or RSA harvest based upon one or more of the following quota will be allowed until NMFS notifies the applicant that the factors: applicant’s EFP request is approved. 1. Availability of funding. Evaluation and Selection Procedures Program Priorities Jkt 205001 PO 00000 Frm 00006 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\18APN1.SGM 18APN1 Federal Register / Vol. 70, No. 73 / Monday, April 18, 2005 / Notices National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) NOAA must analyze the potential environmental impacts, as required by NEPA, for applicant projects or proposals which are seeking NOAA federal assistance opportunities, including special fishing privileges. Detailed information on NOAA compliance with NEPA can be found at the following NOAA NEPA website: http://www.nepa.noaa.gov/ including our NOAA Administrative Order 216–6 for NEPA, http://www.nepa.noaa.gov/ NAO216l6lTOC.pdf and the Council on Environmental Quality implementation regulations, http:// ceq.eh.doe.gov/nepa/regs/ceq/ toclceq.htm. Consequently, as part of an applicant’s package, and under their description of their program activities, applicants are required to provide detailed information on the activities to be conducted, locations, sites, species and habitat to be affected, possible construction activities, and any environmental concerns that may exist (e.g., the use and disposal of hazardous or toxic chemicals, introduction of nonindigenous species, impacts to endangered and threatened species, aquaculture projects, and impacts to coral reef systems). NEPA analysis for RSA projects is normally conducted by the Council through the Council’s annual fishery management specifications process for RSA species. If the Council’s NEPA analysis is not adequate, applicants may be required to provide additional specific information that will serve as the basis for any required impact analyses, applicants may also be requested to assist NOAA in drafting of an environmental assessment, if NOAA determines an assessment is required. Applicants will also be required to cooperate with NOAA in identifying and implementing feasible measures to reduce or avoid any identified adverse environmental impacts of their proposal. The failure to do so shall be grounds for the denial of an application. System (DUNS) number during the application process. See the October 30, 2002, (67 FR 66177) Federal Register for additional information. Organizations can receive a DUNS number at no cost by calling the dedicated toll-free DUNS Number request line at 1–866–705–5711 or via the internet http:// www.dunandbradstreet.com. Executive Order 12372 Applications under this program are subject to Executive Order 12372 ‘‘Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs.’’ Funding for programs listed in this notice is contingent upon the availability of Fiscal Year 2005 appropriations. In no event will NOAA or the Department of Commerce be responsible for application preparation costs if these programs fail to receive funding or are cancelled because of other agency priorities. Publication of this announcement does not oblige NOAA to award any specific project or to obligate any available funds. Paperwork Reduction Act This document contains collection-ofinformation requirements subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA). The use of Standard Forms 424, 424A, 424B, SF-LLL, and CD–346 has been approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under the respective control numbers 0348–0043, 0348–0044, 0348–0040, 0348–0046, and 0605–0001. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no person is required to respond to, nor shall any person be subject to a penalty for failure to comply with, a collection of information subject to the requirements of the PRA unless that collection of information displays a currently valid OMB control number. Executive Order 12866 This notice has been determined to be not significant for purposes of Executive Order 12866. Executive Order 13132 (Federalism) The Department of Commerce PreAward Notification Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements contained in the Federal Register notice of December 30, 2004 (69 FR 78389) are applicable to this solicitation. It has been determined that this notice does not contain policies with Federalism implications as that term is defined in Executive Order 13132. Administrative Procedure Act/ Regulatory Flexibility Act Applicants should be aware that, they are required to provide a Dun and Bradstreet Data Universal Numbering VerDate jul<14>2003 16:08 Apr 15, 2005 Jkt 205001 not required pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553 or any other law, the analytical requirements of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) are inapplicable. Therefore, a regulatory flexibility analysis has not been prepared. Dated: April 13, 2005. John Oliver, Deputy Assistant Administrator for Operations, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 05–7722 Filed 4–15–05; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–S Limitation of Liability Pre-Award Notification Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements Universal Identifier 20107 Prior notice and an opportunity for public comment are not required by the Administrative Procedure Act or any other law for rules concerning public property, loans, grants, benefits, and contracts (5 U.S.C. 553(a)(2)). Because notice and opportunity for comment are PO 00000 Frm 00007 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 CONSUMER PRODUCT SAFETY COMMISSION [CPSC Docket No. 05–C0008] Nautilus, Inc., Provisional Acceptance of a Settlement Agreement and Order Consumer Product Safety Commission. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: SUMMARY: It is the policy of the Commission to publish settlements which it provisionally accepts under the Consumer Product Safety Act in the Federal Register in accordance with the terms of 16 CFR 1118.20(e). Published below is a provisionally-accepted Settlement Agreement with Nautilus, Inc., containing a civil penalty of $950,000.00. Any interested person may ask the Commission not to accept this agreement or otherwise comment on its contents by filing a written request with the Office of the Secretary by May 3, 2005. DATES: Persons wishing to comment on this Settlement Agreement should send written comments to the Comment 05–C0008, Office of the Secretary, Consumer Product Safety Commission, Washington, DC 20207. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Dennis C. Kacoyanis, Trial Attorney, Office of Compliance, Consumer Product Safety Commission, Washington, DC 20207; telephone (301) 504–7587. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The text of the Agreement and Order appears below. ADDRESSES: Dated: April 4, 2005. Todd A. Stevenson, Secretary. In the Matter of Nautilus, Inc. Settlement Agreement and Order 1. This Settlement Agreement is made by and between the staff (‘‘the staff’’) of E:\FR\FM\18APN1.SGM 18APN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 70, Number 73 (Monday, April 18, 2005)]
[Notices]
[Pages 20104-20107]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 05-7722]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

[Docket No. 050318079-5079-01; I.D. 041205E]
RIN 0648-AS32


2006 Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council Set-Aside Program

AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and 
Atmospheric Administration, Commerce.

ACTION: Notice.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: NMFS announces that for fishing year 2006 (January 1- December 
31, 2006) the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) may set 
aside up to 3 percent of the total allowable landings (TAL) in certain 
Mid-Atlantic fisheries to be used for research endeavors under a 
research set-aside (RSA) program. NMFS is soliciting proposals for 
research activities concerning the summer flounder, scup, black sea 
bass, Loligo squid, Illex squid, Atlantic mackerel, butterfish, 
bluefish, and tilefish fisheries. Projects funded under an RSA 
allocation (or award) must enhance the understanding of the fishery 
resource or contribute to the body of information on which management 
decisions are made.

DATES: Applications must be received on or before 5 p.m. eastern 
standard time on May 18, 2005.

ADDRESSES: Electronic application submissions must be transmitted on-
line through http://www.grants.gov. Paper applications must be sent to 
NMFS, Northeast Regional Office, One Blackburn Drive, Gloucester, MA 
01930. Complete information about this program and application 
instructions are contained in the Federal Funding Opportunity notice at 
http://www.grants.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Additional information may be obtained

[[Page 20105]]

from: Daniel Furlong, Executive Director, Mid-Atlantic Fishery 
Management Council, by phone 302-674-2331 ext. 19, or by fax 302-674-
5399; Shannon Lyons, Assistant Fishery Plan Coordinator, Mid-Atlantic 
Fishery Management Council, by phone 302-674-2331 ext. 11, or by email 
at slyons@mafmc.org; or Paul Perra, Fishery Policy Analyst, NMFS, 
Northeast Regional Office, One Blackburn Drive, Gloucester, MA 01930, 
by phone 978-281-9153, by fax 978-281-9135, or by e-mail at 
paul.perra@noaa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Electronic Access:

    Application information is available at www.grants.gov. Electronic 
copies of the Standard Forms for submission of research proposals may 
be found on the Internet in a PDF (Portable Document Format) version at 
http://www.rdc.noaa.gov/%7Egrants/appkit.html under the title ``Grants 
Management Division- Application Toolkit.'' Applicants without Internet 
access can contact Rich Maney, NMFS, Northeast Regional Office, One 
Blackburn Drive, Gloucester, MA 01930, or by phone 978-281-9265, by fax 
978-281-9117, or by e-mail at rich.maney@noaa.gov.

Program Description

    The RSA program provides a mechanism to fund research and 
compensate vessel owners through the sale of fish harvested under the 
research quota. Vessels participating in an approved research project 
may be authorized by the Northeast Regional Administrator, NMFS, to 
harvest and to land species in excess of any imposed trip limit or 
during fishery closures. Landings from such trips are sold to generate 
funds that help defray the costs associated with research projects. No 
Federal funds are provided for research under this notification. NMFS 
and the Council will give priority to funding research proposals in the 
following general subject areas: (1) Bycatch and discard reduction; (2) 
mesh and gear selectivity; (3) fishing impact on habitat; (4) 
cooperative stock assessment surveys; (5) improved recreational fishery 
data; (6) tagging studies; and (7) other research relevant to the Mid-
Atlantic fisheries as further discussed in the full funding opportunity 
announcement, found at the Grants.Gov web site.

Funding Availability

    No Federal funds are provided for research under this notification, 
but rather the opportunity to fish with the catch sold to generate 
income. The Federal Government may issue an Experimental Fishing Permit 
(EFP) or Letter of Acknowledgment (LOA), as applicable, which may 
provide special fishing privileges in response to research proposals 
selected under this program. The Federal Government shall not be liable 
for any costs incurred in the conduct of the project. In the past two 
to five awards have been issued. During the 2004 fishing year, the 
income generated ranged from $37,210 to $227,507, with an average of 
$120,652.
    Funds generated from the RSA landings shall be used to cover the 
cost of the research activities, including vessel costs, and to 
compensate boats for expenses incurred during the collection of the 
set-aside species. For example, the funds may be used to pay for gear 
modifications, monitoring equipment, additional provisions (e.g., fuel, 
ice, food for scientists), or the salaries of research personnel. The 
Federal Government is not liable for any costs incurred by the 
researcher or vessel owner should the sale of the excess catch not 
fully reimburse the researcher or vessel owner for his/her expenses.
    The Council, in consultation with the Atlantic States Marine 
Fisheries Commission, will incorporate the level of RSA (amounts or 
percentages) for each of the set-aside species for the 2006 fishing 
year into the Council's recommendations for annual quota 
specifications. NMFS will consider the recommended level of RSA as part 
of the associated rulemaking process.
    The actual level of RSA quota available to applicants for the 2006 
fishing year will depend on the TAL level specified by the Council at 
its quota-setting meetings in June and August 2005, and the percentage 
(0 to 3 percent) of the TAL recommended by the Council and approved by 
NMFS as the level of RSA available for 2006.
    To help researchers develop proposals for the 2006 fishing year, 
the Table 1 (below) provides guidance on the general magnitude of RSA 
and estimated values that a researcher might expect to be available for 
fishing year 2006. Table 1 is based on proposed RSA levels available 
and the actual allocated RSA amounts for these fisheries for the 2005 
fishing year. The table is intended only as a guide, to be used when 
developing research proposals for the 2006 fishing year; it does not 
necessarily reflect the actual RSA quota that will be allocated for 
fishing year 2006. Based on Council recommendations, NMFS may choose to 
adopt less than 3 percent of TAL as a set-aside, or decide not to adopt 
any set-aside for a given fishery. The estimated values of the set-
aside allocations will vary depending on market considerations 
prevailing at the time the research trips are conducted. In October 
2002, the Council voted to set the RSA for tilefish at zero until a 
completed stock assessment exists. However, tilefish RSA projects may 
be considered upon the completion of a stock assessment and/or by 
utilizing RSA quota from other species. The 2006 final specifications 
used to determine the amount of set-aside for each species will be 
published separately.

    Table 1. Examples of RSA Amounts Based on 2005 FMP Specifications
 
    Allocation     Amount Available*   2005 RSA Amount    2005 RSA Est.
     Species              (lb)              (lb)              Value
 
Summer Flounder    909,000            353,917           $569,806
Scup               495,000            303,675           $182,205
Black Sea Bass     246,000            109,500           $221,190
Loligo Squid       1,124,357          502,350           $378,250
Illex Squid        1,797,328          none requested    NA
Atlantic Mackerel  7,605,948          none requested    NA
Butterfish         111,179            none requested    NA
Bluefish           925,590            363,677           $105,466
Tilefish           0                  0                 NA
 
*Amount available based on proposed 2005 FMP specifications.


[[Page 20106]]

Program Priorities

    Projects funded under an RSA allocation (or award) must enhance 
understanding of the fishery resource or contribute to the body of 
information on which management decisions are made. Research and 
additional fishing voyages to obtain fish for compensation, may be 
conducted as specified in the EFP or LOA, as applicable, in or outside 
of a closed area, within the time frame of a commercial quota closure, 
and onboard a fishing or other type of vessel including recreational 
and/or commercial vessels.
    The Council and NMFS will give priority to funding research 
proposals in areas identified as research priorities by the Council and 
Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (Commission) for the 2006 
fishing year.

Statutory Authority

    Grants are issued pursuant to sections 303(b)(11), 402(e), and 
404(c) of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, 
16 U.S.C. 1853(b)(11), 16 U.S.C. 1881a(e), and 16 U.S.C. 1881(c), 
respectively.

Eligibility

    Eligible applicants are institutions of higher education, 
hospitals, other nonprofits, commercial organizations, individuals, 
State, local and Native American tribal governments. Federal agencies 
and institutions are not eligible to receive Federal assistance under 
this notice. Additionally, employees of any Federal agency or Regional 
Fishery Management Council are ineligible to submit an application 
under this program. However, Council members who are not Federal 
employees may submit an application.
    DOC/NOAA supports cultural and gender diversity and encourages 
women and minority individuals and groups to submit applications to the 
RSA program. In addition DOC/NOAA is strongly committed to broadening 
the participation of historically black colleges and universities, 
Hispanic serving institutions, tribal colleges and universities, and 
institutions that work in underserved areas. DOC/NOAA encourages 
proposals involving any of the above institutions.
    DOC/NOAA encourages applications from members of the fishing 
community and applications that involve fishing community cooperation 
and participation.

Cost Sharing Requirements

    None required.

Evaluation and Selection Procedures

    NMFS will solicit written technical evaluations from the Council 
members who make up the Research Set-Aside Committee (Committee) and 
three or more appropriate private and public sector experts to 
determine the technical merit of the proposal and to provide a rank 
score of the project based on the criteria described in the Evaluation 
Criteria section of this document. Following completion of the 
technical evaluation, NMFS will convene a review panel, including the 
Committee and technical experts, to review and individually critique 
the scored proposals to enhance NOAA's understanding of the proposals. 
Initial successful applicants may be required, in consultation with 
NMFS, to further refine/modify the study methodology as a condition of 
project approval. No consensus recommendations will be made by the 
Committee members, technical experts, or by the review panel.

Evaluation Criteria

    1. Importance and/or relevance of the proposed project: This 
criterion ascertains whether there is intrinsic value in the proposed 
work and/or relevance to NOAA, Federal, regional, state or local 
activities. (25 points)
    2. Technical/scientific merit: This criterion assesses whether the 
approach is technically sound and/or innovative, if the methods are 
appropriate, and whether there are clear project goals and objectives. 
(25 points)
    3. Overall qualifications of the project: This criterion assesses 
whether the applicant, and team members, possess the necessary 
education, experience, training, facilities and administrative 
resources to accomplish the project. (15 points)
    4. Project costs: This criterion evaluates the budget to determine 
if it is realistic and commensurate with the project needs and time 
frame. (25 points)
    5. Outreach and education: This criterion assesses whether the 
project involves a focused and effective education and outreach 
strategy regarding NOAA's mission to protect the Nation's natural 
resources. (10 points)
    The merit review ratings shall provide a rank order to the 
Selecting Official for final funding recommendations. The Selecting 
Official shall award in the rank order unless the proposal is justified 
to be selected out of rank order based upon one or more of the 
following factors:
    1. Availability of funding.
    2. Balance/distribution of funds:
     a. Geographically
     b. By type of institutions
     c. By type of partners
     d. By research areas
     e. By project types
    3. Whether this project duplicates other projects funded or 
considered for funding by NOAA or other federal agencies.
    4. Program priorities and policy factors.
    5. Applicant's prior award performance.
    6. Partnerships and/or participation of targeted groups.
    7. Adequacy of information necessary to conduct a NEPA analysis and 
determination.
    Key program policy factors (see 4 above) to be considered by the 
Selecting Official are: (1) The time of year the research activities 
are to be conducted; (2) the ability of the proposal to meet the 
applicable experimental fishery requirements; (3) redundancy of 
research projects; and (4) logistical concerns. Therefore, the highest 
scoring projects may not necessarily be selected for an award. All 
approved research must be conducted in accordance with provisions 
approved by NOAA and provided in an LOA or EFP issued by NMFS. 
Unsuccessful applications will be returned to the submitter. Successful 
applications will be incorporated into the award document.
    For proposals that request exemptions from existing regulations 
(e.g., possession limits, closed seasons), the impacts of the proposed 
exemptions must be analyzed. The Council will analyze these impacts as 
part of the impacts of the proposed specifications for the upcoming 
fishing year in the annual quota specification packages it submits to 
NMFS. However, those individuals with proposals that include vessel 
activities extending beyond the scope of the analysis provided by the 
Council may be required to provide additional analysis before issuance 
of an EFP. Applicants who request regulatory exemptions beyond the 
scope of the Council analysis may be required to adhere to the 
regulations governing the issuance of an EFP by NMFS. As appropriate, 
NMFS will consult with the Council and successful applicants to secure 
the information required for granting an exemption if issuance of an 
EFP is necessary for the research to be conducted. No research or RSA 
harvest quota will be allowed until NMFS notifies the applicant that 
the applicant's EFP request is approved.

[[Page 20107]]

National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)

    NOAA must analyze the potential environmental impacts, as required 
by NEPA, for applicant projects or proposals which are seeking NOAA 
federal assistance opportunities, including special fishing privileges. 
Detailed information on NOAA compliance with NEPA can be found at the 
following NOAA NEPA website: http://www.nepa.noaa.gov/ including our 
NOAA Administrative Order 216-6 for NEPA, http://www.nepa.noaa.gov/
NAO216_6_TOC.pdf and the Council on Environmental Quality 
implementation regulations, http://ceq.eh.doe.gov/nepa/regs/ceq/toc_
ceq.htm.
    Consequently, as part of an applicant's package, and under their 
description of their program activities, applicants are required to 
provide detailed information on the activities to be conducted, 
locations, sites, species and habitat to be affected, possible 
construction activities, and any environmental concerns that may exist 
(e.g., the use and disposal of hazardous or toxic chemicals, 
introduction of non-indigenous species, impacts to endangered and 
threatened species, aquaculture projects, and impacts to coral reef 
systems). NEPA analysis for RSA projects is normally conducted by the 
Council through the Council's annual fishery management specifications 
process for RSA species. If the Council's NEPA analysis is not 
adequate, applicants may be required to provide additional specific 
information that will serve as the basis for any required impact 
analyses, applicants may also be requested to assist NOAA in drafting 
of an environmental assessment, if NOAA determines an assessment is 
required. Applicants will also be required to cooperate with NOAA in 
identifying and implementing feasible measures to reduce or avoid any 
identified adverse environmental impacts of their proposal. The failure 
to do so shall be grounds for the denial of an application.

Pre-Award Notification Requirements for Grants and Cooperative 
Agreements

    The Department of Commerce Pre-Award Notification Requirements for 
Grants and Cooperative Agreements contained in the Federal Register 
notice of December 30, 2004 (69 FR 78389) are applicable to this 
solicitation.

Universal Identifier

    Applicants should be aware that, they are required to provide a Dun 
and Bradstreet Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number during the 
application process. See the October 30, 2002, (67 FR 66177) Federal 
Register for additional information. Organizations can receive a DUNS 
number at no cost by calling the dedicated toll-free DUNS Number 
request line at 1-866-705-5711 or via the internet http://
www.dunandbradstreet.com.

Executive Order 12372

    Applications under this program are subject to Executive Order 
12372 ``Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs.''

Limitation of Liability

    Funding for programs listed in this notice is contingent upon the 
availability of Fiscal Year 2005 appropriations. In no event will NOAA 
or the Department of Commerce be responsible for application 
preparation costs if these programs fail to receive funding or are 
cancelled because of other agency priorities. Publication of this 
announcement does not oblige NOAA to award any specific project or to 
obligate any available funds.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    This document contains collection-of-information requirements 
subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA). The use of Standard Forms 
424, 424A, 424B, SF-LLL, and CD-346 has been approved by the Office of 
Management and Budget (OMB) under the respective control numbers 0348-
0043, 0348-0044, 0348-0040, 0348-0046, and 0605-0001. Notwithstanding 
any other provision of law, no person is required to respond to, nor 
shall any person be subject to a penalty for failure to comply with, a 
collection of information subject to the requirements of the PRA unless 
that collection of information displays a currently valid OMB control 
number.

Executive Order 12866

    This notice has been determined to be not significant for purposes 
of Executive Order 12866.

Executive Order 13132 (Federalism)

    It has been determined that this notice does not contain policies 
with Federalism implications as that term is defined in Executive Order 
13132.

Administrative Procedure Act/ Regulatory Flexibility Act

    Prior notice and an opportunity for public comment are not required 
by the Administrative Procedure Act or any other law for rules 
concerning public property, loans, grants, benefits, and contracts (5 
U.S.C. 553(a)(2)). Because notice and opportunity for comment are not 
required pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553 or any other law, the analytical 
requirements of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) 
are inapplicable. Therefore, a regulatory flexibility analysis has not 
been prepared.

    Dated: April 13, 2005.
John Oliver,
Deputy Assistant Administrator for Operations, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 05-7722 Filed 4-15-05; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-S