Fisheries in the Eastern Pacific Ocean; Pelagic Fisheries; Vessel Identification Requirements, 18706-18709 [2011-8075]

Download as PDF 18706 Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 65 / Tuesday, April 5, 2011 / Proposed Rules Finding DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE On the basis of our evaluation under section 4(b)(3)(A) of the Act, we find that the petition presents substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that listing both the Peary and Dolphin and Union caribou as endangered or threatened may be warranted. This finding is based on information evaluated under factors D and E for both subspecies. Because we have found that the petition presents substantial information indicating that listing these two subspecies may be warranted, we are initiating a status review to determine whether listing these two subspecies of caribou as endangered or threatened under the Act is warranted. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration References Cited A complete list of references cited is available on the Internet at http:// www.regulations.gov and upon request from the Branch of Foreign Species, Endangered Species Program, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT). Authors The primary authors of this notice are the staff members of the Branch of Foreign Species, Endangered Species Program, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT). Authority: The authority for this action is the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.). Dated: March 11, 2011. Rowan W. Gould, Acting Director, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. [FR Doc. 2011–7653 Filed 4–4–11; 8:45 am] WReier-Aviles on DSKGBLS3C1PROD with PROPOSALS BILLING CODE 4310–55–P VerDate Mar<15>2010 13:08 Apr 04, 2011 Jkt 223001 50 CFR Parts 300 and 660 [Docket No. 110218143–1209–01] RIN 0648–BA49 Fisheries in the Eastern Pacific Ocean; Pelagic Fisheries; Vessel Identification Requirements National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Proposed rule; request for comments. AGENCY: NMFS proposes to revise vessel identification requirements for U.S. vessels based out of the U.S. West Coast that fish for highly migratory species. The new measures would allow these vessels to be marked in accordance with the international standards that were implemented by NMFS for vessels fishing on the high seas in the Area of the Convention on the Conservation and Management of Highly Migratory Fish Stocks in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean (Convention Area) in early 2010. Currently, the domestic marking requirements for some U.S. West Coast vessels do not comport with these international standards. The new measures would require vessels that fish in the Convention Area to display their International Telecommunication Union Radio Call Sign (IRCS), or if an IRCS has not been assigned to the vessel, the vessel would be required to display its official number, preceded by the characters ‘‘USA–’’. The intent of the proposed action is to bring the existing vessel identification requirements into conformity with the binding vessel identification requirements adopted by the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC). DATES: Comments must be received by 5 p.m., local time, on May 5, 2011. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by 0648–BA49, by any one of the following methods: • Electronic Submissions: Submit all electronic public comments via the SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00043 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 Federal eRulemaking Portal: http:// www.regulations.gov. • Fax: 562–980–4047, Attn: Heidi Hermsmeyer. • Mail: Rodney R. McInnis, Regional Administrator, NMFS Southwest Regional Office (SWR), 501 W. Ocean Blvd., Suite 4200, Long Beach, CA 90802. Include the identifier ‘‘0648– BA49’’ in the comments. Instructions: All comments received are a part of the public record and will generally be posted to http:// www.regulations.gov without change. All Personal Identifying Information (for example, name, address, etc.) voluntarily submitted by the commenter may be publicly accessible. Do not submit Confidential Business Information or otherwise sensitive or protected information. NMFS will accept anonymous comments (enter N/A in the required fields, if you wish to remain anonymous). You may submit attachments to electronic comments in Microsoft Word, Excel, WordPerfect, or Adobe PDF file formats only. Written comments regarding the burden-hour estimates or other aspects of the collection-of-information requirements contained in this proposed rule may be submitted to NMFS SWR at the address above, and by e-mail to OIRA_Submission@omb.eop.gov, or fax to (202) 395–7285. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Heidi Hermsmeyer, NMFS SWR, 562– 980–4036. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The WCPFC was established under the Convention on the Conservation and Management of Highly Migratory Fish Stocks in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean (Convention). The Convention’s objective is to ensure, through effective management, the longterm conservation and sustainable use of highly migratory fish stocks in the western and central Pacific Ocean, including measures to manage and conserve tunas and to minimize impacts on protected resources, such as sea turtles and seabirds. Figure 1 is a map of the Convention Area. The Convention Area includes the operational areas of U.S. troll, pole-and-line, tuna purse seine, and pelagic longline fisheries. E:\FR\FM\05APP1.SGM 05APP1 Under the Convention, vessels that are authorized to fish on the high seas in the Convention Area are required to be identified in accordance with the Standard Specifications for the Marking and Identification of Fishing Vessels of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. By final rules published on January 21, 2010 (75 FR 3335 and 3416), NMFS implemented those standards for U.S. fishing vessels under the authority of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Convention Implementation Act (WCPFCIA, Pub. L. 109–479, sec. 501, et seq., and codified at 16 U.S.C. 6901 et seq.). Specifically, U.S. vessels used for commercial fishing for highly migratory species (HMS) on the high seas with a NMFS-issued WCPFC Area Endorsement would be required to display its IRCS on the port and starboard sides of the hull or superstructure and deck surface. If an IRCS has not been assigned, the vessel must display its official number (i.e., VerDate Mar<15>2010 13:08 Apr 04, 2011 Jkt 223001 USCG documentation number or other registration number) preceded by the characters ‘‘USA’’ and a hyphen (i.e., ‘‘USA—’’). Only these markings would be allowed on the hull or superstructure, apart from the vessel’s name and hailing port. This proposed rule is consistent with the requirements established under the WCPFCIA as it would revise existing vessel identification regulations at Title 50, Code of Federal Regulations, §§ 660.704 and 300.173 to conform to the international standards. United States vessels that are issued a permit under 50 CFR 660.707, i.e., vessels that fish for HMS off or land HMS in the States of California, Oregon, and Washington, and that fish for HMS on the high seas of the Convention Area would be required to display vessel markings as described above. Vessels that fish for pelagic species only within the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) or on the high seas outside the PO 00000 Frm 00044 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 18707 Convention Area would have the option to be marked pursuant to the vessel identification requirements described above, or maintain markings pursuant to existing vessel identification requirements. The proposed rule would modify only the characters with which Federally-permitted pelagic fishing vessels are marked, and would not modify vessel operations or other aspects of the pelagic fisheries. Classification Pursuant to section 304(b)(1)(A) of the Magnuson-Stevens Act (16 U.S.C. 1854(b)(1)(A)), the NMFS Assistant Administrator has determined that this proposed rule is consistent with the Magnuson-Stevens Act, and other applicable law, subject to further consideration after public comment. This proposed rule has been determined to be not significant for purposes of Executive Order 12866. E:\FR\FM\05APP1.SGM 05APP1 EP05AP11.010</GPH> WReier-Aviles on DSKGBLS3C1PROD with PROPOSALS Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 65 / Tuesday, April 5, 2011 / Proposed Rules WReier-Aviles on DSKGBLS3C1PROD with PROPOSALS 18708 Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 65 / Tuesday, April 5, 2011 / Proposed Rules The Chief Council for Regulation of the Department of Commerce certified to the Chief Council for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration that this proposed rule, if adopted, would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. A description of the action, why it is being considered, and the legal basis for this action are contained in the preamble to this proposed rule. All vessels having the potential to be affected by this action are considered to be small entities under the current Small Business Administration definition of small fish-harvesting businesses (gross receipts not in excess of $ 4.0 million). The proposed rule would result in an estimated one-time cost to each vessel of around $10 dollars to conform to the new vessel marking requirements. It is estimated that at a maximum 125 vessels would be required to change their markings (estimate based on the current number of active vessels targeting HMS on the high seas that have the potential to fish in the WCPFC Convention Area). The majority, if not all, of these vessels would be troll and pole-and-line vessels targeting albacore tuna. The estimated 2008 average gross revenue per vessel for the troll and poleand-line fisheries was approximately $52,000. Average gross revenues per vessel for other fisheries that have the potential to be affected would be equal to or greater than the estimate for the troll and pole-and-line fisheries. Therefore, the cost of vessel marking for those vessels represents less than one percent of gross revenues per vessel on average. It is highly unlikely that this action would result in any vessel’s costs exceeding three percent of gross revenues (which would translate to an estimated cost of $1,550 for the troll and pole-and-line fisheries). This proposed action contains no fishery management controls that affect the operations of the fishery, other than vessel identification. Thus, significant impacts to the profitability of a substantial number of small entities are not anticipated. This rule does not duplicate, overlap, or conflict with other Federal rules. There are no disproportionate economic impacts from this rule based on home port, gear type, or relative vessel size. The Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) was briefed on this issue at their September 2008 meeting; in a letter dated November 20, 2008, the Council formally recommended that NMFS revise regulations accordingly. Pursuant to section 605(b) of the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 605(b), the NMFS Southwest Regional Office (SWR) has determined that, for VerDate Mar<15>2010 13:08 Apr 04, 2011 Jkt 223001 the reasons described above, this rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. As a result, an initial regulatory flexibility analysis is not required and none has been prepared. This proposed rule contains collection-of-information requirements subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) and which have been approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under control numbers 0648–0361 and 0648–0492. Public reporting burden for vessel identification requirements under 0648– 0361 is estimated to average 45 minutes per response, and public reporting burden for vessel marking requirement under 0648–0492 is estimated to average 5 minutes per response, including the time for reviewing instructions, searching existing data sources, gathering and maintaining the data needed, and completing and reviewing the collection of information. Send comments regarding this burden estimate, or any other aspect of this data collection, including suggestions for reducing the burden, to NMFS Southwest Regional Office (see ADDRESSES) and by e-mail to OIRA_Submission@omb.eop.gov, or fax to 202–395–7285. Notwithstanding any other provision of the law, no person is required to respond to, and no person shall be subject to 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. List of Subjects 50 CFR Part 300 Administrative practice and procedure, Fisheries, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements. 50 CFR Part 660 Administrative practice and procedure, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements. Dated: March 31, 2011. John Oliver, Deputy Assistant Administrator for Operations, National Marine Fisheries Service. For the reasons set out in the preamble, 50 CFR parts 300 and 660 are proposed to be amended as follows: PART 300—INTERNATIONAL FISHERIES REGULATIONS 1. The authority citation for part 300 continues to read as follows: Authority: 16 U.S.C. 2431 et seq., 31 U.S.C. 9701 et seq. PO 00000 Frm 00045 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 2. Section § 300.173 is revised to read as follows: § 300.173 Vessel identification. Each U.S. vessel fishing under the Treaty must be marked for identification purposes, as follows: (a) A vessel used to fish on the high seas within the Convention Area as defined in § 300.211 must be marked in accordance with the requirements at § 300.14 and 300.217. (b) A vessel not used to fish on the high seas within the Convention Area as defined in § 300.211 must be marked in accordance with either: (1) Sections 300.14 and 300.217, or (2) The vessel’s name and U.S. Coast Guard Documentation number (or if not documented, the state registration number) followed by the letter U must be prominently displayed where they will be clearly visible both from the air and from a surface vessel. Numerals and the letter U must meet the size requirements of § 660.704 of this title. Markings must be legible and of a color that contrasts with the background. PART 660—FISHERIES OFF WEST COAST STATES 1. The authority citation for part 660 continues to read as follows: Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. and 16 U.S.C. 7001 et seq. 2. Section 660.704 is revised to read as follows: § 660.704 Vessel identification. (a) Applicability. This section only applies to commercial fishing vessels that fish for HMS off, or land HMS in the States of California, Oregon, and Washington. This section does not apply to recreational charter vessels that fish for HMS off or land HMS in the States of California, Oregon, and Washington. Each fishing vessel must be marked for identification purposes, as follows: (1) A vessel used to fish on the high seas within the Convention Area as defined in § 300.211 of this title must be marked in accordance with the requirements at § 300.14 and 300.217 of this title. (2) A vessel not used to fish on the high seas within the Convention Area as defined in § 300.211 of this title must be marked in accordance with either: (i) Sections 300.14 and 300.217 of this title, or (ii) The vessel’s official number must be affixed to the port and starboard sides of the deckhouse or hull, and on an appropriate weather deck so as to be visible from enforcement vessels and aircraft. The official number must be E:\FR\FM\05APP1.SGM 05APP1 Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 65 / Tuesday, April 5, 2011 / Proposed Rules affixed to each vessel subject to this section in block Arabic numerals at least 10 inches (25.40 cm) in height for vessels more than 25 ft (7.62 m) but equal to or less than 65 ft (19.81 m) in length; and 18 inches (45.72 cm) in height for vessels longer than 65 ft (19.81 m) in length. Markings must be legible and of a color that contrasts with the background. (b) [Reserved]. [FR Doc. 2011–8075 Filed 4–4–11; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 660 [Docket No. 110311192–1204–01] RIN 0648–BA95 Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; Fisheries Off West Coast States; Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery; 2011 Tribal Fishery for Pacific Whiting National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Proposed rule; request for comments. AGENCY: NMFS is issuing this proposed rule for the 2011 Pacific whiting tribal fishery under the authority of the Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery Management Plan (FMP) and the Magnuson Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson Act). Washington coastal treaty Indian tribes mean the Hoh, Makah, and Quileute Indian Tribes and the Quinault Indian Nation. This proposed rule establishes an interim tribal allocation of Pacific whiting for the 2011 season only, based on discussions with the Makah and Quileute tribes and Quinault Indian Nation regarding their fishing plans. At the March, 2011 Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) meeting, the Council recommended a coastwide Optimum Yield (OY) of 393,751 mt. This would result in a U.S. OY of 290,903 mt. The proposed rule, based on communications to date with the tribes, proposes a tribal allocation of 66,908 mt, for 2011 only, given the Council’s recommended OY. DATES: Comments on this proposed rule must be received no later than 5 p.m., local time on April 19, 2011. WReier-Aviles on DSKGBLS3C1PROD with PROPOSALS SUMMARY: VerDate Mar<15>2010 13:08 Apr 04, 2011 Jkt 223001 You may submit comments, identified by RIN 0648–BA95 by any one of the following methods: • Electronic Submissions: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal eRulemaking Portal http:// www.regulations.gov. • Fax: 206–526–6736, Attn: Kevin C. Duffy • Mail: William W. Stelle, Jr., Regional Administrator, Northwest Region, NMFS, 7600 Sand Point Way NE, Seattle, WA 98115–0070, Attn: Kevin C. Duffy. Instructions: All comments received are a part of the public record and will generally be posted to http:// www.regulations.gov without change. All Personal Identifying Information (for example, name, address, etc.) voluntarily submitted by the commenter may be publicly accessible. Do not submit Confidential Business Information or otherwise sensitive or protected information. NMFS will accept anonymous comments. Attachments to electronic comments will be accepted in Microsoft Word, Excel, WordPerfect, or Adobe PDF file formats only. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Kevin C. Duffy (Northwest Region, NMFS), phone: 206–526–4743, fax: 206–526–6736 and e-mail: kevin.duffy@noaa.gov. ADDRESSES: SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Electronic Access This proposed rule is accessible via the Internet at the Office of the Federal Register’s Web site at http:// www.gpoaccess.gov/fr/index.html. Background information and documents are available at the Pacific Fishery Management Council’s Web site at http://www.pcouncil.org/. Background The regulations at 50 CFR 660.50(d) establish the process by which the tribes with treaty fishing rights in the area covered by the Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery Management Plan (FMP) request new allocations or regulations specific to the tribes, in writing, during the biennial harvest specifications and management measures process. The regulations state ‘‘the Secretary will develop tribal allocations and regulations under this paragraph in consultation with the affected tribe(s) and, insofar as possible, with tribal consensus.’’ These procedures employed by NOAA in implementing tribal treaty rights under the FMP, in place since May 31, 1996, were designed to provide a framework process by which NMFS can accommodate tribal treaty rights by PO 00000 Frm 00046 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 18709 setting aside appropriate amounts of fish in conjunction with the Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) process for determining harvest specifications and management measures. The Council’s groundfish fisheries require a high degree of coordination among the tribal, state, and federal co-managers in order to rebuild overfished species and prevent overfishing, while allowing fishermen opportunities to sustainably harvest over 90 species of groundfish managed under the FMP. Since 1996, NMFS has been allocating a portion of the U.S. OY of Pacific whiting to the tribal fishery following the process established in 50 CFR 660.50(d). The tribal allocation is subtracted from the whiting OY before allocation to the non-tribal sectors. To date, there has been no determination of the total amount of whiting for which the tribes are entitled to fish under their treaty right. Therefore, allocations to date have been on an interim basis, and are not considered to set precedent with respect to the amount of the treaty right. To date, only the Makah Tribe has prosecuted a tribal fishery for Pacific whiting. The Makah Tribe has annually harvested a whiting allocation every year since 1996 using midwater trawl gear. From 1999 until 2009, the tribal allocation was based on a statement of need for their tribal fishery. In recent years prior to 2009, the specific tribal amount was generally, although not always, determined using a sliding scale relative to the U.S. whiting OY of between 14 and 17.5 percent, depending on the specific OY determined by the Council. In general, years with a relatively low OY resulted in a tribal allocation closer to 17.5 percent, and years with a relatively high OY result in a tribal allocation closer to 14 percent. Between 2000 and 2008, the U.S. OY ranged from a high of 269,545 mt in 2008 to a low of 129,600 mt in 2002. In absolute amounts, the tribal allocation from 2000 to 2008 ranged from a high of 35,000 mt in 2005, 2007, and 2008 to a low of 22,680 mt in 2002. For the 2009 fishery, the Quileute Tribe first stated their intent to participate in the fishery. That year, the U.S. OY was 135,939 mt, and the tribal allocation was set at 50,000 mt (36.78 percent of the U.S. OY). A set-aside of 42,000 mt was established for the Makah, and an 8,000 mt set-aside was established for the Quileute. The final rule in 2009 anticipated the Makah managing their fisheries to achieve a harvest of no more than 42,000 mt, and the Quileute managing their fisheries to achieve a harvest of no more than 8,000 mt. For 2010, both the Makah and E:\FR\FM\05APP1.SGM 05APP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 76, Number 65 (Tuesday, April 5, 2011)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 18706-18709]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2011-8075]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Parts 300 and 660

[Docket No. 110218143-1209-01]
RIN 0648-BA49


Fisheries in the Eastern Pacific Ocean; Pelagic Fisheries; Vessel 
Identification Requirements

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

ACTION: Proposed rule; request for comments.

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SUMMARY: NMFS proposes to revise vessel identification requirements for 
U.S. vessels based out of the U.S. West Coast that fish for highly 
migratory species. The new measures would allow these vessels to be 
marked in accordance with the international standards that were 
implemented by NMFS for vessels fishing on the high seas in the Area of 
the Convention on the Conservation and Management of Highly Migratory 
Fish Stocks in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean (Convention Area) 
in early 2010. Currently, the domestic marking requirements for some 
U.S. West Coast vessels do not comport with these international 
standards. The new measures would require vessels that fish in the 
Convention Area to display their International Telecommunication Union 
Radio Call Sign (IRCS), or if an IRCS has not been assigned to the 
vessel, the vessel would be required to display its official number, 
preceded by the characters ``USA-''. The intent of the proposed action 
is to bring the existing vessel identification requirements into 
conformity with the binding vessel identification requirements adopted 
by the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC).

DATES: Comments must be received by 5 p.m., local time, on May 5, 2011.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by 0648-BA49, by any one 
of the following methods:
     Electronic Submissions: Submit all electronic public 
comments via the Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov.
     Fax: 562-980-4047, Attn: Heidi Hermsmeyer.
     Mail: Rodney R. McInnis, Regional Administrator, NMFS 
Southwest Regional Office (SWR), 501 W. Ocean Blvd., Suite 4200, Long 
Beach, CA 90802. Include the identifier ``0648-BA49'' in the comments.
    Instructions: All comments received are a part of the public record 
and will generally be posted to http://www.regulations.gov without 
change. All Personal Identifying Information (for example, name, 
address, etc.) voluntarily submitted by the commenter may be publicly 
accessible. Do not submit Confidential Business Information or 
otherwise sensitive or protected information.
    NMFS will accept anonymous comments (enter N/A in the required 
fields, if you wish to remain anonymous). You may submit attachments to 
electronic comments in Microsoft Word, Excel, WordPerfect, or Adobe PDF 
file formats only.
    Written comments regarding the burden-hour estimates or other 
aspects of the collection-of-information requirements contained in this 
proposed rule may be submitted to NMFS SWR at the address above, and by 
e-mail to OIRA_Submission@omb.eop.gov, or fax to (202) 395-7285.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Heidi Hermsmeyer, NMFS SWR, 562-980-
4036.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The WCPFC was established under the 
Convention on the Conservation and Management of Highly Migratory Fish 
Stocks in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean (Convention). The 
Convention's objective is to ensure, through effective management, the 
long-term conservation and sustainable use of highly migratory fish 
stocks in the western and central Pacific Ocean, including measures to 
manage and conserve tunas and to minimize impacts on protected 
resources, such as sea turtles and seabirds. Figure 1 is a map of the 
Convention Area. The Convention Area includes the operational areas of 
U.S. troll, pole-and-line, tuna purse seine, and pelagic longline 
fisheries.

[[Page 18707]]

[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TP05AP11.010

    Under the Convention, vessels that are authorized to fish on the 
high seas in the Convention Area are required to be identified in 
accordance with the Standard Specifications for the Marking and 
Identification of Fishing Vessels of the Food and Agriculture 
Organization of the United Nations. By final rules published on January 
21, 2010 (75 FR 3335 and 3416), NMFS implemented those standards for 
U.S. fishing vessels under the authority of the Western and Central 
Pacific Fisheries Convention Implementation Act (WCPFCIA, Pub. L. 109-
479, sec. 501, et seq., and codified at 16 U.S.C. 6901 et seq.). 
Specifically, U.S. vessels used for commercial fishing for highly 
migratory species (HMS) on the high seas with a NMFS-issued WCPFC Area 
Endorsement would be required to display its IRCS on the port and 
starboard sides of the hull or superstructure and deck surface. If an 
IRCS has not been assigned, the vessel must display its official number 
(i.e., USCG documentation number or other registration number) preceded 
by the characters ``USA'' and a hyphen (i.e., ``USA--''). Only these 
markings would be allowed on the hull or superstructure, apart from the 
vessel's name and hailing port.
    This proposed rule is consistent with the requirements established 
under the WCPFCIA as it would revise existing vessel identification 
regulations at Title 50, Code of Federal Regulations, Sec. Sec.  
660.704 and 300.173 to conform to the international standards. United 
States vessels that are issued a permit under 50 CFR 660.707, i.e., 
vessels that fish for HMS off or land HMS in the States of California, 
Oregon, and Washington, and that fish for HMS on the high seas of the 
Convention Area would be required to display vessel markings as 
described above. Vessels that fish for pelagic species only within the 
U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) or on the high seas outside the 
Convention Area would have the option to be marked pursuant to the 
vessel identification requirements described above, or maintain 
markings pursuant to existing vessel identification requirements. The 
proposed rule would modify only the characters with which Federally-
permitted pelagic fishing vessels are marked, and would not modify 
vessel operations or other aspects of the pelagic fisheries.

Classification

    Pursuant to section 304(b)(1)(A) of the Magnuson-Stevens Act (16 
U.S.C. 1854(b)(1)(A)), the NMFS Assistant Administrator has determined 
that this proposed rule is consistent with the Magnuson-Stevens Act, 
and other applicable law, subject to further consideration after public 
comment.
    This proposed rule has been determined to be not significant for 
purposes of Executive Order 12866.

[[Page 18708]]

    The Chief Council for Regulation of the Department of Commerce 
certified to the Chief Council for Advocacy of the Small Business 
Administration that this proposed rule, if adopted, would not have a 
significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. 
A description of the action, why it is being considered, and the legal 
basis for this action are contained in the preamble to this proposed 
rule. All vessels having the potential to be affected by this action 
are considered to be small entities under the current Small Business 
Administration definition of small fish-harvesting businesses (gross 
receipts not in excess of $ 4.0 million).
    The proposed rule would result in an estimated one-time cost to 
each vessel of around $10 dollars to conform to the new vessel marking 
requirements. It is estimated that at a maximum 125 vessels would be 
required to change their markings (estimate based on the current number 
of active vessels targeting HMS on the high seas that have the 
potential to fish in the WCPFC Convention Area). The majority, if not 
all, of these vessels would be troll and pole-and-line vessels 
targeting albacore tuna. The estimated 2008 average gross revenue per 
vessel for the troll and pole-and-line fisheries was approximately 
$52,000. Average gross revenues per vessel for other fisheries that 
have the potential to be affected would be equal to or greater than the 
estimate for the troll and pole-and-line fisheries. Therefore, the cost 
of vessel marking for those vessels represents less than one percent of 
gross revenues per vessel on average. It is highly unlikely that this 
action would result in any vessel's costs exceeding three percent of 
gross revenues (which would translate to an estimated cost of $1,550 
for the troll and pole-and-line fisheries).
    This proposed action contains no fishery management controls that 
affect the operations of the fishery, other than vessel identification. 
Thus, significant impacts to the profitability of a substantial number 
of small entities are not anticipated. This rule does not duplicate, 
overlap, or conflict with other Federal rules. There are no 
disproportionate economic impacts from this rule based on home port, 
gear type, or relative vessel size. The Pacific Fishery Management 
Council (Council) was briefed on this issue at their September 2008 
meeting; in a letter dated November 20, 2008, the Council formally 
recommended that NMFS revise regulations accordingly.
    Pursuant to section 605(b) of the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 
U.S.C. 605(b), the NMFS Southwest Regional Office (SWR) has determined 
that, for the reasons described above, this rule will not have a 
significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. 
As a result, an initial regulatory flexibility analysis is not required 
and none has been prepared.
    This proposed rule contains collection-of-information requirements 
subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) and which have been 
approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under control 
numbers 0648-0361 and 0648-0492. Public reporting burden for vessel 
identification requirements under 0648-0361 is estimated to average 45 
minutes per response, and public reporting burden for vessel marking 
requirement under 0648-0492 is estimated to average 5 minutes per 
response, including the time for reviewing instructions, searching 
existing data sources, gathering and maintaining the data needed, and 
completing and reviewing the collection of information. Send comments 
regarding this burden estimate, or any other aspect of this data 
collection, including suggestions for reducing the burden, to NMFS 
Southwest Regional Office (see ADDRESSES) and by e-mail to OIRA_Submission@omb.eop.gov, or fax to 202-395-7285.
    Notwithstanding any other provision of the law, no person is 
required to respond to, and no person shall be subject to 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.

List of Subjects

50 CFR Part 300

    Administrative practice and procedure, Fisheries, Reporting and 
recordkeeping requirements.

50 CFR Part 660

    Administrative practice and procedure, Reporting and recordkeeping 
requirements.

    Dated: March 31, 2011.
John Oliver,
Deputy Assistant Administrator for Operations, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.

    For the reasons set out in the preamble, 50 CFR parts 300 and 660 
are proposed to be amended as follows:

PART 300--INTERNATIONAL FISHERIES REGULATIONS

    1. The authority citation for part 300 continues to read as 
follows:

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 2431 et seq., 31 U.S.C. 9701 et seq.

    2. Section Sec.  300.173 is revised to read as follows:


Sec.  300.173  Vessel identification.

    Each U.S. vessel fishing under the Treaty must be marked for 
identification purposes, as follows:
    (a) A vessel used to fish on the high seas within the Convention 
Area as defined in Sec.  300.211 must be marked in accordance with the 
requirements at Sec.  300.14 and 300.217.
    (b) A vessel not used to fish on the high seas within the 
Convention Area as defined in Sec.  300.211 must be marked in 
accordance with either:
    (1) Sections 300.14 and 300.217, or
    (2) The vessel's name and U.S. Coast Guard Documentation number (or 
if not documented, the state registration number) followed by the 
letter U must be prominently displayed where they will be clearly 
visible both from the air and from a surface vessel. Numerals and the 
letter U must meet the size requirements of Sec.  660.704 of this 
title. Markings must be legible and of a color that contrasts with the 
background.

PART 660--FISHERIES OFF WEST COAST STATES

    1. The authority citation for part 660 continues to read as 
follows:

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. and 16 U.S.C. 7001 et seq.

    2. Section 660.704 is revised to read as follows:


Sec.  660.704  Vessel identification.

    (a) Applicability. This section only applies to commercial fishing 
vessels that fish for HMS off, or land HMS in the States of California, 
Oregon, and Washington. This section does not apply to recreational 
charter vessels that fish for HMS off or land HMS in the States of 
California, Oregon, and Washington. Each fishing vessel must be marked 
for identification purposes, as follows:
    (1) A vessel used to fish on the high seas within the Convention 
Area as defined in Sec.  300.211 of this title must be marked in 
accordance with the requirements at Sec.  300.14 and 300.217 of this 
title.
    (2) A vessel not used to fish on the high seas within the 
Convention Area as defined in Sec.  300.211 of this title must be 
marked in accordance with either:
    (i) Sections 300.14 and 300.217 of this title, or
    (ii) The vessel's official number must be affixed to the port and 
starboard sides of the deckhouse or hull, and on an appropriate weather 
deck so as to be visible from enforcement vessels and aircraft. The 
official number must be

[[Page 18709]]

affixed to each vessel subject to this section in block Arabic numerals 
at least 10 inches (25.40 cm) in height for vessels more than 25 ft 
(7.62 m) but equal to or less than 65 ft (19.81 m) in length; and 18 
inches (45.72 cm) in height for vessels longer than 65 ft (19.81 m) in 
length. Markings must be legible and of a color that contrasts with the 
background.
    (b) [Reserved].

[FR Doc. 2011-8075 Filed 4-4-11; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P