New England and Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Councils; Public Comment, 49500-49501 [2014-19843]

Download as PDF 49500 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 162 / Thursday, August 21, 2014 / Notices the intent to take final action to address the emergency. Special Accommodations The meetings are physically accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids should be directed to Mr. Kris Kleinschmidt at (503) 820–2425 at least 5 days prior to the meeting date. Dated: August 18, 2014. Tracey L. Thompson, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2014–19853 Filed 8–20–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648–XD431 Marine Recreational Fisheries of the United States; Southeast Data, Assessment, and Review (SEDAR); Public Meetings National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice of Marine Recreational Information Program (MRIP) Calibration Workshop. AGENCY: SEDAR and NOAA Fisheries Service will convene a workshop to consider calibration methods for recent changes in methods employed by MRIP for estimating marine recreational fisheries harvest. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION. SUMMARY: The meetings will be held from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. on September 8, 2014; 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. on September 9, 2014, and 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. on September 10, 2014. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION. ADDRESSES: The MRIP Calibration Workshop will be held at the Crowne Plaza Airport Hotel, 4831 Tanger Outlet Boulevard, North Charleston, SC 29418; telephone: (800) 503–5762 or (843) 744– 4422; fax: (843) 744–4472. SEDAR address: SEDAR, South Atlantic Fishery Management Council, 4055 Faber Place Drive, Suite 201, N. Charleston, SC 29405. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: John Carmichael, Science and Statistics Program Manager, 4055 Faber Place Drive, Suite 201, North Charleston, SC 29405; telephone: (843) 571–4366. mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES DATES: VerDate Mar<15>2010 17:18 Aug 20, 2014 Jkt 232001 The following items will be discussed during this meeting. 1 p.m. Monday, September 8, 2014–12 p.m. Wednesday, September 10, 2014: 1. Review methods and results of MRIP Calibration Workshop I. 2. Review MRIP Pilot Study of new Access Point Angler Intercept Survey (APAIS) sampling design. 3. Review 2013–14 Coastwide Implementation of New APAIS design. 4. Review Analytical methods used to evaluate APAIS design change effects on MRIP catch statistics. 5. Review of analytical results for Gulf red snapper and selected additional species stocks. 6. Consideration of other possible analytical approaches. 7. Assessment of possible methods for calibrating pre-2013 MRIP catch statistics. 8. Testing of alternative calibration approaches. Although non-emergency issues not contained in this agenda may come before this group for discussion, in accordance with the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act), those issues may not be the subject of formal action during this meeting. Actions will be restricted to those issues specifically identified in this notice and any issues arising after publication of this notice that require emergency action under Section 305(c) of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, provided the public has been notified of the Council’s intent to take final action to address the emergency. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Special Accommodations These meetings are physically accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids should be directed to the South Atlantic Council office, 4055 Faber Place Drive, Suite 201, North Charleston, SC 29405; telephone: (843) 571–4366, at least 5 business days prior to the workshop. Dated: August 18, 2014. Tracey L. Thompson, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2014–19852 Filed 8–20–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P PO 00000 Frm 00010 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648–XD436 New England and Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Councils; Public Comment National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice; request for comments. AGENCY: The New England and MidAtlantic Fishery Management Councils, in cooperation with the NMFS Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office, seek public comment on a draft amendment to all the fishery management plans under their purview. The omnibus amendment would modify provisions limiting changes to vessel size and horsepower specifications in limited access fleets. DATES: Comments must be received by September 22, 2014. ADDRESSES: You may submit written comments by any of the following methods. • Email: nmfs.gar.baseline@noaa.gov. Include in the subject line ‘‘Comments on draft Baseline Amendment.’’ • Mail: John K. Bullard, Regional Administrator, NMFS, Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office, 55 Great Republic Drive, Gloucester, MA 01930. Mark the outside of the envelope ‘‘Comments on draft Baseline Amendment.’’ • Fax: (978) 281–9135. Copies of the draft amendment may be obtained by contacting the NMFS Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office at the above address. The documents are also available via the internet at: www.greateratlantic.fisheries.noaa.gov. SUMMARY: FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Melissa Hooper, Fishery Policy Analyst, (978) 281–9166. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Fishing vessel baseline specifications and upgrade restrictions have been used as a tool in Northeast limited access fisheries to promote conservation of fish species by limiting potential increases in the harvest capacity of the fleet. To reduce fishing mortality and fishing effort, the New England and MidAtlantic Fishery Management Councils have used various effort controls, such as limits on the amount of time (numbers of days-at-sea (DAS)) that can be fished, trip limits, state-by-state quota allocations, and moratoria on E:\FR\FM\21AUN1.SGM 21AUN1 mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 162 / Thursday, August 21, 2014 / Notices issuance of new permits. Vessel upgrade restrictions were intended to control the potential increase in effort and catch that could occur if an individual vessel increased in size or horsepower and, therefore, was able to catch more fish for a given amount of effort. For example, if a vessel were able to land more fish per DAS fished because of an increased size or horsepower, it could undermine the purpose of matching the total DAS allocation to a target total allowable catch. In the case of hard quotas, a vessel’s catch rate per trip could increase because of an upgrade to its size or horsepower, accelerating the rate the quota is taken and increasing the race to fish. A permit’s ‘‘baseline vessel’’ was generally the vessel that was first issued the limited access permit for the fishery. The specifications of this first permitted vessel (length, horsepower, gross tonnage, and net tonnage) became the permit’s ‘‘baseline specifications’’ and restrictions were placed on how much a future vessel holding the permit could deviate from these specifications. In this way, baseline specifications and upgrade restrictions limit potential future increases in harvest capacity and prevent them from undermining other management measures targeted at controlling fishing mortality. However, since the time baseline specifications were adopted, many fisheries have implemented other effort controls and annual catch limits (ACLs), which restrict effort and put a cap on total harvest. In addition, replacement and upgrade restrictions can be a costly and time-consuming administrative burden for both the industry and NMFS. In light of these circumstances, the New England and Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Councils, in cooperation with the NMFS Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office, have developed the Omnibus Amendment to Simplify Vessel Baselines. The objective of this amendment is to eliminate certain baseline restrictions to reduce the administrative and cost burden to industry and NMFS, while maintaining the benefits to conservation and fleet diversity that baseline measures provide. This action would apply to all limited access fisheries within the Councils’ jurisdiction: The Atlantic Herring Fishery Management Plan (FMP); the Atlantic Sea Scallop FMP; the Atlantic Deep-Sea Red Crab FMP; the Mackerel, Squid, and Butterfish FMP; the Monkfish FMP; the Northeast Multispecies FMP; the Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass FMP; the Surfclam and Ocean Quahog FMP; and the Tilefish FMP. The Baseline Amendment considers VerDate Mar<15>2010 17:18 Aug 20, 2014 Jkt 232001 alternatives to (1) maintain the status quo baseline regulations; (2) eliminate the one-time limit on vessel upgrades; (3) eliminate gross and net tonnages from vessel baselines; and (4) eliminate both the one-time limit on vessel upgrades and tonnage specifications. Under all of the alternatives, the 10percent limit on vessel size upgrades and 20-percent of vessel horsepower upgrades would remain. The Councils considered adding alternatives that would make more substantial changes to baseline regulations or eliminate them entirely. However, the Councils opted to keep this action limited in scope in order to expedite its implementation. The Councils are currently discussing initiating another omnibus amendment that would consider more substantial changes for a future fishing year and where that action would fall among the Councils’ priorities. The Councils selected Alternative 4 to eliminate the restrictions on both the one-time limit on vessel upgrades and tonnage specifications as their preferred alternative in this action. NMFS and the Councils will consider all comments received on the draft baseline amendment and the alternatives for incorporation into the final document until the end of the comment period on September 22, 2014. The public will have several additional opportunities to comment on the amendment. The final amendment will be considered for approval by the Councils at public meetings in late 2014. Once submitted to NMFS, the final Baseline Amendment will be made available for public review and comment, and regulations will be proposed for review and comment. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Dated: August 18, 2014 Alan D. Risenhoover, Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2014–19843 Filed 8–20–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648–XD442 Taking and Importing Marine Mammals: Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Navy Operations of Surveillance Towed Array Sensor System Low Frequency Active Sonar National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and AGENCY: PO 00000 Frm 00011 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 49501 Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice; issuance of four letters of authorization. In accordance with regulations issued under the Marine Mammal Protection Act, as amended, we hereby give notification that we, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), have issued four 1-year Letters of Authorization (Authorizations) to the U.S. Navy (Navy) to take marine mammals by harassment incidental to their military readiness activities associated with the routine training, testing, and military operations of Surveillance Towed Array Sensor System Low Frequency Active (SURTASS LFA) sonar within the northwest Pacific Ocean and the northcentral Pacific Ocean. DATES: These Authorizations are effective from August 15, 2014, through August 14, 2015. ADDRESSES: Electronic copies of the Navy’s April 4, 2014 application letter and the Authorizations are available by writing to Jolie Harrison, Chief, Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910– 3225, by telephoning the contact listed here (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT), or online at: http:// www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/ incidental.htm#applications. Documents cited in this notice may be viewed, by appointment, during regular business hours, at the aforementioned address. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jeannine Cody, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS (301) 427–8401. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: SUMMARY: Background Section 101(a)(5)(A) of the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA; 16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.) directs the Secretary of Commerce to allow, upon request, the incidental, but not intentional taking of marine mammals by U.S. citizens if certain findings are made and regulations are issued. Under the MMPA, the term ‘‘take’’ means to harass, hunt, capture, or kill or to attempt to harass, hunt, capture, or kill marine mammals. We, NMFS, have been delegated the authority to issue such regulations and Authorizations. With respect to military readiness activities, the MMPA defines harassment as ‘‘(i) any act that injures or has the significant potential to injure a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild [Level A harassment]; E:\FR\FM\21AUN1.SGM 21AUN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 162 (Thursday, August 21, 2014)]
[Notices]
[Pages 49500-49501]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-19843]


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

DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

RIN 0648-XD436


New England and Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Councils; Public 
Comment

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

ACTION: Notice; request for comments.

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

SUMMARY: The New England and Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Councils, 
in cooperation with the NMFS Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries 
Office, seek public comment on a draft amendment to all the fishery 
management plans under their purview. The omnibus amendment would 
modify provisions limiting changes to vessel size and horsepower 
specifications in limited access fleets.

DATES: Comments must be received by September 22, 2014.

ADDRESSES: You may submit written comments by any of the following 
methods.
     Email: nmfs.gar.baseline@noaa.gov. Include in the subject 
line ``Comments on draft Baseline Amendment.''
     Mail: John K. Bullard, Regional Administrator, NMFS, 
Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office, 55 Great Republic Drive, 
Gloucester, MA 01930. Mark the outside of the envelope ``Comments on 
draft Baseline Amendment.''
     Fax: (978) 281-9135.
    Copies of the draft amendment may be obtained by contacting the 
NMFS Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office at the above address. 
The documents are also available via the internet at: 
www.greateratlantic.fisheries.noaa.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Melissa Hooper, Fishery Policy 
Analyst, (978) 281-9166.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Fishing vessel baseline specifications and 
upgrade restrictions have been used as a tool in Northeast limited 
access fisheries to promote conservation of fish species by limiting 
potential increases in the harvest capacity of the fleet. To reduce 
fishing mortality and fishing effort, the New England and Mid-Atlantic 
Fishery Management Councils have used various effort controls, such as 
limits on the amount of time (numbers of days-at-sea (DAS)) that can be 
fished, trip limits, state-by-state quota allocations, and moratoria on

[[Page 49501]]

issuance of new permits. Vessel upgrade restrictions were intended to 
control the potential increase in effort and catch that could occur if 
an individual vessel increased in size or horsepower and, therefore, 
was able to catch more fish for a given amount of effort. For example, 
if a vessel were able to land more fish per DAS fished because of an 
increased size or horsepower, it could undermine the purpose of 
matching the total DAS allocation to a target total allowable catch. In 
the case of hard quotas, a vessel's catch rate per trip could increase 
because of an upgrade to its size or horsepower, accelerating the rate 
the quota is taken and increasing the race to fish. A permit's 
``baseline vessel'' was generally the vessel that was first issued the 
limited access permit for the fishery. The specifications of this first 
permitted vessel (length, horsepower, gross tonnage, and net tonnage) 
became the permit's ``baseline specifications'' and restrictions were 
placed on how much a future vessel holding the permit could deviate 
from these specifications. In this way, baseline specifications and 
upgrade restrictions limit potential future increases in harvest 
capacity and prevent them from undermining other management measures 
targeted at controlling fishing mortality. However, since the time 
baseline specifications were adopted, many fisheries have implemented 
other effort controls and annual catch limits (ACLs), which restrict 
effort and put a cap on total harvest. In addition, replacement and 
upgrade restrictions can be a costly and time-consuming administrative 
burden for both the industry and NMFS.
    In light of these circumstances, the New England and Mid-Atlantic 
Fishery Management Councils, in cooperation with the NMFS Greater 
Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office, have developed the Omnibus 
Amendment to Simplify Vessel Baselines. The objective of this amendment 
is to eliminate certain baseline restrictions to reduce the 
administrative and cost burden to industry and NMFS, while maintaining 
the benefits to conservation and fleet diversity that baseline measures 
provide. This action would apply to all limited access fisheries within 
the Councils' jurisdiction: The Atlantic Herring Fishery Management 
Plan (FMP); the Atlantic Sea Scallop FMP; the Atlantic Deep-Sea Red 
Crab FMP; the Mackerel, Squid, and Butterfish FMP; the Monkfish FMP; 
the Northeast Multispecies FMP; the Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black 
Sea Bass FMP; the Surfclam and Ocean Quahog FMP; and the Tilefish FMP. 
The Baseline Amendment considers alternatives to (1) maintain the 
status quo baseline regulations; (2) eliminate the one-time limit on 
vessel upgrades; (3) eliminate gross and net tonnages from vessel 
baselines; and (4) eliminate both the one-time limit on vessel upgrades 
and tonnage specifications. Under all of the alternatives, the 10-
percent limit on vessel size upgrades and 20-percent of vessel 
horsepower upgrades would remain.
    The Councils considered adding alternatives that would make more 
substantial changes to baseline regulations or eliminate them entirely. 
However, the Councils opted to keep this action limited in scope in 
order to expedite its implementation. The Councils are currently 
discussing initiating another omnibus amendment that would consider 
more substantial changes for a future fishing year and where that 
action would fall among the Councils' priorities.
    The Councils selected Alternative 4 to eliminate the restrictions 
on both the one-time limit on vessel upgrades and tonnage 
specifications as their preferred alternative in this action. NMFS and 
the Councils will consider all comments received on the draft baseline 
amendment and the alternatives for incorporation into the final 
document until the end of the comment period on September 22, 2014. The 
public will have several additional opportunities to comment on the 
amendment. The final amendment will be considered for approval by the 
Councils at public meetings in late 2014. Once submitted to NMFS, the 
final Baseline Amendment will be made available for public review and 
comment, and regulations will be proposed for review and comment.

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

    Dated: August 18, 2014
Alan D. Risenhoover,
Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries 
Service.
[FR Doc. 2014-19843 Filed 8-20-14; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P