Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Snapper-Grouper Fishery and Golden Crab Fishery of the South Atlantic, and Dolphin and Wahoo Fishery of the Atlantic, 58448-58461 [2015-24576]

Download as PDF asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS 58448 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 188 / Tuesday, September 29, 2015 / Proposed Rules flexibility analysis is not required and has not been prepared. In the event that reclassification of a fishery to Category I or II results in a TRP, economic analyses of the effects of that TRP would be summarized in subsequent rulemaking actions. This proposed rule contains collection-of-information requirements subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act. The collection of information for the registration of individuals under the MMPA has been approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under OMB control number 0648–0293 (0.15 hours per report for new registrants and 0.09 hours per report for renewals). The requirement for reporting marine mammal mortalities or injuries has been approved by OMB under OMB control number 0648–0292 (0.15 hours per report). These estimates include 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 these reporting burden estimates or any other aspect of the collections of information, including suggestions for reducing burden, to NMFS and OMB (see ADDRESSES and SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION). Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no person is required to respond to nor shall a person be subject to a penalty for failure to comply with a collection of information subject to the requirements of the Paperwork Reduction Act unless that collection of information displays a currently valid OMB control number. This proposed rule has been determined to be not significant for the purposes of Executive Order 12866. An environmental assessment (EA) was prepared under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) in 1995 and 2005. The 1995 EA examined the effects of regulations implementing section 118 of the 1994 Amendments of the MMPA on the affected environment. The 2005 EA analyzed the environmental impacts of continuing the existing scheme (as described in the 1995 EA) for classifying fisheries on the LOF. The 1995 EA and the 2005 EA concluded that implementation of MMPA section 118 regulations would not have a significant impact on the human environment. NMFS reviewed the 2005 EA in 2009. NMFS concluded that because there were no changes to the process used to develop the LOF and implement section 118 of the MMPA, there was no need to update the 2005 EA. This rule would not change NMFS’ current process for classifying VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:13 Sep 28, 2015 Jkt 235001 fisheries on the LOF; therefore, this rule is not expected to change the analysis or conclusion of the 2005 EA and FONSI, and no update is needed. If NMFS takes a management action, for example, through the development of a TRP, NMFS would first prepare an environmental document, as required under NEPA, specific to that action. This proposed rule would not affect species listed as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) or their associated critical habitat. The impacts of numerous fisheries have been analyzed in various biological opinions, and this rule will not affect the conclusions of those opinions. The classification of fisheries on the LOF is not considered to be a management action that would adversely affect threatened or endangered species. If NMFS takes a management action, for example, through the development of a TRP, NMFS would consult under ESA section 7 on that action. This proposed rule would have no adverse impacts on marine mammals and may have a positive impact on marine mammals by improving knowledge of marine mammals and the fisheries interacting with marine mammals through information collected from observer programs, stranding and sighting data, or take reduction teams. This proposed rule would not affect the land or water uses or natural resources of the coastal zone, as specified under section 307 of the Coastal Zone Management Act. References Allen, B.M. and R.P. Angliss, editors. 2015. Alaska Marine Mammal Stock Assessments, 2014. NOAA Tech. Memo. NMFS–AFSC–301. 270 p. Carretta, J.V., E. Oleson, D.W. Weller, A.R. Lang, K.A. Forney, J. Baker, B. Hanson, K Martien, M.M. Muto, M.S. Lowry, J. Barlow, D. Lynch, L. Carswell, R.L. Brownell Jr., D.K. Mattila, and M.C. Hill. 2015. U.S. Pacific Marine Mammal Stock Assessments: 2014. NOAA Technical Memorandum NOAA–TM–NMFS– SWFSC–549. 78 p. Garrison, L.P. and Stokes, L. 2014. Estimated Bycatch of Marine Mammals and Sea Turtles in U.S. Atlantic Pelagic Longline Fleet During 2013. NOAA Technical Memorandum NOAA–NMFS–SEFSC– 667: 6lp. McCracken, M.L. Assessment of Incidental Interactions with Marine Mammals in the Hawaii Deep and Shallow Set Fisheries from 2008 through 2012. NMFS Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center, PIFSC Internal Report IR–14–006. 1 p. + Excel spreadsheet. Waring, G.T., E. Josephson, K. Maze-Foley, and P.E. Rosel, editors. 2015. U.S. Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico Marine Mammal Stocks Assessments, 2014. PO 00000 Frm 00087 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 NOAA Technical Memorandum NOAA– NE–231. 355 p. Dated: September 17, 2015. Samuel D. Rauch III, Deputy Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Programs, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2015–24638 Filed 9–28–15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 622 [Docket No. 140819686–5840–01] RIN 0648–BE38 Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; SnapperGrouper Fishery and Golden Crab Fishery of the South Atlantic, and Dolphin and Wahoo Fishery of the Atlantic National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Proposed rule; request for comments. AGENCY: NMFS proposes to implement management measures described in Amendment 34 to the Fishery Management Plan (FMP) for the Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic Region, Amendment 9 to the FMP for the Golden Crab Fishery of the South Atlantic Region, and Amendment 8 to the FMP for the Dolphin and Wahoo Fishery of the Atlantic; collectively referred to as the Generic Accountability Measures (AM) and Dolphin Allocation Amendment (Generic AM Amendment), as prepared and submitted by the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council). If implemented, this proposed rule would revise the commercial and recreational AMs for numerous snappergrouper species and golden crab. This proposed rule would also revise commercial and recreational sector allocations for dolphin in the Atlantic. The proposed actions are intended to make the AMs consistent for snappergrouper species addressed in this proposed rule and for golden crab, and revise the allocations between the commercial and recreational sectors for dolphin. DATES: Written comments must be received on or before October 29, 2015. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments on the proposed rule, identified by SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\29SEP1.SGM 29SEP1 asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 188 / Tuesday, September 29, 2015 / Proposed Rules ‘‘NOAA–NMFS–2013–0181’’ by either of the following methods: • Electronic Submission: Submit all electronic comments via the Federal eRulemaking Portal. Go to www.regulations.gov/ #!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-20130181, click the ‘‘Comment Now!’’ icon, complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments. • Mail: Submit all written comments to Mary Janine Vara, NMFS Southeast Regional Office (SERO), 263 13th Avenue South, St. Petersburg, FL 33701. Instructions: Comments sent by any other method, to any other address or individual, or received after the end of the comment period, may not be considered by NMFS. All comments received are a part of the public record and will generally be posted for public viewing on www.regulations.gov without change. All personal identifying information (e.g., name, address, etc.), confidential business information, or otherwise sensitive information submitted voluntarily by the sender will be publicly accessible. NMFS will accept anonymous comments (enter ‘‘N/A’’ in the required fields if you wish to remain anonymous). Electronic copies of the Generic AM Amendment, which includes an environmental assessment, initial regulatory flexibility analysis (IRFA), regulatory impact review, and fishery impact statement, may be obtained from www.regulations.gov or the SERO Web site at http://sero.nmfs.noaa.gov. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mary Janine Vara, NMFS SERO, telephone: 727–824–5305, or email: mary.vara@noaa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The snapper-grouper fishery in the South Atlantic is managed under the FMP for the Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic Region (SnapperGrouper FMP). The golden crab fishery in the South Atlantic is managed under the FMP for the Golden Crab Fishery of the South Atlantic Region (Golden Crab FMP). The dolphin and wahoo fishery in the Atlantic is managed under the FMP for the Dolphin and Wahoo Fishery of the Atlantic (Dolphin Wahoo FMP). The FMPs were prepared by the Council and implemented by NMFS through regulations at 50 CFR part 622 under the authority of the MagnusonStevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act). Background The Magnuson-Stevens Act requires that NMFS and regional fishery management councils prevent VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:13 Sep 28, 2015 Jkt 235001 overfishing and achieve, on a continuing basis, the optimum yield from federally managed fish stocks. These mandates are intended to ensure that fishery resources are managed for the greatest overall benefit to the nation, particularly with respect to providing food production and recreational opportunities, and protecting marine ecosystems. To further this goal, the Magnuson-Stevens Act requires fishery managers to minimize bycatch and bycatch mortality to the extent practicable. Management Measures Contained in This Proposed Rule Modifications to Commercial and Recreational AMs for Snapper-Grouper Species and Golden Crab This proposed rule would revise the AMs for golden tilefish, snowy grouper, gag, red grouper, black grouper, scamp, the other shallow-water grouper complex (SASWG: red hind, rock hind, yellowmouth grouper, yellowfin grouper, coney, and graysby), greater amberjack, the other jacks complex (lesser amberjack, almaco jack, and banded rudderfish), bar jack, yellowtail snapper, mutton snapper, the other snappers complex (cubera snapper, gray snapper, lane snapper, dog snapper, and mahogany snapper), gray triggerfish, wreckfish (recreational sector), Atlantic spadefish, hogfish, red porgy, the other porgies complex (jolthead porgy, knobbed porgy, whitebone porgy, scup, and saucereye porgy), and golden crab (commercial sector). Currently, the snapper-grouper species and golden crab addressed in this proposed rule have slightly different AMs in place compared to other snapper-grouper species. This proposed rule would modify the AMs for these species, including those identified in the species complexes, to make them consistent with the majority of the AMs already in place for other snapper-grouper species. Specifically, the proposed rule would update the recreational AMs to allow NMFS to close recreational sectors when the recreational annual catch limits (ACLs) are met or are projected to be met, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. The proposed rule would also modify the AMs to trigger post-season ACL reductions in the commercial and recreational sectors in the year following an ACL overage under certain situations. If the recreational sector exceeds its ACL, NMFS would monitor the recreational sector for persistence in increased landings during the following PO 00000 Frm 00088 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 58449 fishing year. In the following fishing year, if the best scientific information available determines it necessary, NMFS would publish a notice in the Federal Register to reduce the length of fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage if the species, or one or more species in a species complex, is overfished and if the total ACL (commercial ACL and recreational ACL) was exceeded in the prior fishing year. If the commercial sector exceeds its ACL, NMFS would publish a notice in the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL in the following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage if the species, or one or more species in a species complex, is overfished and if the total ACL (commercial ACL and recreational ACL) was exceeded in the prior fishing year. Modifying the AMs in this manner would create regulatory consistency among the majority of federally managed species in the South Atlantic region. Modifications to Commercial and Recreational Sector Allocations for Dolphin The Council has expressed concern that the variability in commercial annual landings of dolphin could result in the commercial ACL being exceeded in the future, and that the recreational sector for dolphin has not come close to reaching its ACL in recent years. Therefore, in the Generic AM Amendment, the Council assessed allocation methods for revising the fishing sector allocations for dolphin. The current sector allocations for dolphin are 7.54 percent for the commercial sector and 92.46 percent for the recreational sector. The Council chose these allocations using a sector allocation formula where 50 percent of the sector allocations are based on a longer-term landings series (1999–2008) and 50 percent of the sector allocations are based on a shorter time series (2006– 2008). This results in the current ACL of 1,157,001 lb (524,807 kg), round weight, for the commercial sector and 14,187,845 lb (6,435,498 kg), round weight, for the recreational sector. In the Generic AM Amendment, the Council chose a sector allocation formula for dolphin based on the average of the percentages of the total catch from 2008–2012. Thus, this proposed rule would revise the commercial sector allocation to be 10 percent with an ACL of 1,534,485 lb (696,031 kg), round weight, and the recreational sector allocation for dolphin to be 90 percent with an ACL E:\FR\FM\29SEP1.SGM 29SEP1 58450 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 188 / Tuesday, September 29, 2015 / Proposed Rules asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS of 13,810,361 lb (6,264,274 kg), round weight. This change in sector allocation would constitute an ACL increase for the commercial sector and an ACL decrease for the recreational sector of 377,484 lb (171,224 kg), round weight. Other Changes to the Codified Text This proposed rule would clarify the AM provisions in § 622.193 (the ACLs/ AMs section of the regulations for South Atlantic snapper-grouper species) that would reduce a season length in the following recreational fishing year. These clarifications would aid law enforcement efforts. For those snappergrouper species that have a post-season AM if a recreational ACL is exceeded, under certain conditions NMFS would reduce the season length (i.e., implement a closure) for that species or species complex in the following fishing year by publishing an AM notification and closure date for the recreational sector for that species or species complex in the Federal Register. In this proposed rule, NMFS would add a closure provision to the regulations for these situations. Specifically, the provision states that when the closure becomes effective, the bag and possession limits for the applicable species or species complex in or from the South Atlantic EEZ would be reduced to zero. In addition, this proposed rule would remove and consolidate language in § 622.190(a)(6) for the red porgy commercial quota from past fishing years that is no longer applicable. Finally, this proposed rule would fix an error in § 622.280 for Atlantic dolphin and wahoo. Atlantic dolphin and wahoo are managed off the Atlantic states (Maine through the east coast of Florida) via the Dolphin Wahoo FMP; however, in the AMs section of the codified text, the closure provisions currently apply in the South Atlantic EEZ only. This inadvertent error was implemented in the rulemaking for the Comprehensive ACL Amendment (77 FR 15916, March 16, 2011). This proposed rule would change ‘‘South Atlantic EEZ’’ to ‘‘Atlantic EEZ’’ in the AMs for dolphin and wahoo in paragraphs (a)(1)(i) and (b)(1)(i) of § 622.280, which is consistent with the FMP for management of these species from Maine through the east coast of Florida. Classification Pursuant to section 304(b)(1)(A) of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, the NMFS Assistant Administrator has determined that this proposed rule is consistent with Amendment 34 to the FMP for the Snapper-Grouper Fishery, Amendment VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:13 Sep 28, 2015 Jkt 235001 9 to the FMP for the Golden Crab Fishery, Amendment 8 to the FMP for the Dolphin and Wahoo Fishery, other provisions of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, and other applicable laws, subject to further consideration after public comment. This proposed rule has been determined to be not significant for purposes of Executive Order 12866. NMFS prepared an IRFA, as required by section 603 of the Regulatory Flexibility Act, for this proposed rule. The IRFA describes the economic impact this proposed rule, if adopted, would have on small entities. A description of the action, why it is being considered, the objectives of, and legal basis for this action are contained at the beginning of this section in the preamble and in the SUMMARY section of the preamble. A copy of the full analysis is available from NMFS (see ADDRESSES). A summary of the IRFA follows. The Magnuson-Stevens Act provides the statutory basis for this proposed rule. No duplicative, overlapping, or conflicting Federal rules have been identified. In addition, no new reporting, record-keeping, or other compliance requirements are introduced by this proposed rule. Accordingly, this proposed rule does not implicate the Paperwork Reduction Act. NMFS expects this proposed rule, if implemented, to directly affect federally permitted commercial fishermen harvesting snapper-grouper species or golden crab in the South Atlantic. NMFS also expects this proposed rule to affect federally permitted commercial fishermen harvesting dolphin in the South Atlantic and off states north of North Carolina (northeastern states). The Small Business Administration established size criteria for all major industry sectors in the U.S. including fish harvesters and for-hire operations. A business involved in fish harvesting is classified as a small business if independently owned and operated, is not dominant in its field of operation (including its affiliates), and its combined annual receipts are not in excess of $20.5 million (NAICS code 114111, finfish fishing) for all of its affiliated operations worldwide. Charter vessels and headboats (forhire vessels) sell fishing services, which include the harvest of any species considered in this proposed rule, to recreational anglers. These vessels provide a platform for the opportunity to fish and not a guarantee to catch or harvest any species, though expectations of successful fishing, however defined, likely factor into the decision to purchase these services. PO 00000 Frm 00089 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 Changing the allowable harvest of a species, including in-season closures and post-season ACL overage adjustments, only defines what can be kept and does not explicitly prevent the continued offer of for-hire fishing services. In response to a change in the allowable harvest, including a zero-fish limit or fishery closure, fishing for other species could continue. Because the changes considered in this proposed rule would not directly alter the service sold by these vessels, this proposed rule would not directly apply to or regulate their operations. For-hire vessels would continue to be able to offer their core product, which is an attempt to ‘‘put anglers on fish,’’ provide the opportunity for anglers to catch whatever their skills enable them to catch, and keep those fish that they desire to keep and are legal to keep. Any change in demand for these fishing services and associated economic affects as a result of changing a quota or fishery closures would be a consequence of behavioral change by anglers, secondary to any direct effect on anglers and, therefore, an indirect effect of the proposed regulatory action. Because the effects on for-hire vessels would be indirect, they fall outside the scope of the RFA. Recreational anglers, who may be directly affected by the changes in this proposed rule, are not small entities under the RFA. NMFS has not identified any other small entities that would be expected to be directly affected by this proposed rule. The snapper-grouper fishery is a multi-species fishery and vessels generally land many species on the same trips. Vessels in the dolphin fishery also catch other species jointly with dolphin. The golden crab fishery is more specialized than either the snapper-grouper or dolphin fishery. Because of the possibility that some vessels land only species not affected by this proposed rule, the following provides a description of vessels and their revenues by focusing on the key species (black grouper, mutton snapper, yellowtail snapper, greater amberjack, red porgy, gag, golden tilefish, red grouper, snowy grouper, wreckfish, golden crab, and dolphin) addressed in this proposed rule. Hogfish, a recently assessed species, is not included here as a key species for this analysis as it is being addressed by the Council in Amendment 37. However, revenue approximations for vessels landing hogfish are noted below. The number of vessels and revenues (2013 dollars) are annual averages for the period 2009 through 2013, unless otherwise noted. Data for the years 2009 through 2013 E:\FR\FM\29SEP1.SGM 29SEP1 asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 188 / Tuesday, September 29, 2015 / Proposed Rules were the latest complete five-year data available when the Council considered the actions in this proposed rule. Approximately 188 vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of black grouper generated approximately $54,000 in revenues from black grouper and other species; 266 vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of mutton snapper had revenues of approximately $51,000 from mutton snapper and other species; 252 vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) yellowtail snapper had revenues of approximately $38,000 from yellowtail snapper and other species; 295 vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of greater amberjack had revenues of approximately $53,000 from greater amberjack and other species; 191 vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of red porgy had revenues of approximately $60,000 from red porgy and other species; 273 vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of gag had revenues of approximately $49,000 from gag and other species; 63 vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of golden tilefish had revenues of approximately $68,000 from golden tilefish and other species; 278 vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of red grouper had revenues of approximately $50,000 from red grouper and other species; 95 vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of red snapper had revenues of approximately $57,000 from red snapper and other species; 138 vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of snowy grouper had revenues of approximately $78,000 from snowy grouper and other species; and 488 vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of dolphin had revenues of approximately $64,000 from dolphin and other species. Revenues for vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of wreckfish or golden crab can be approximated based on total revenues from landings of those species and the number of permits. As of August 6, 2015, there were five wreckfish permits and 11 golden crab permits. For fishing years 2009/2010 through 2013/2014, annual revenues from wreckfish landings averaged $752,881, implying average annual revenue per wreckfish vessel of approximately $188,000. From 2009 through 2013, annual revenues from golden crab landings averaged $1,419,843, implying average annual revenue per golden crab vessel of approximately $142,000. Most of the unassessed species (almaco jack, banded rudderfish, lesser amberjack, gray snapper, lane snapper, cubera snapper, dog snapper, mahogany snapper, white grunt, sailors choice, tomtate, margate, red hind, rock hind, yellowmouth grouper, yellowfin grouper, coney, VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:13 Sep 28, 2015 Jkt 235001 graysby, jolthead porgy, knobbed porgy, saucereye porgy, scup, whitebone porgy, Atlantic spadefish, bar jack, scamp, and gray triggerfish), and hogfish had lower dockside revenues than many of the key species. In fact, the highest dockside values of an unassessed species (scamp) were much lower than those of at least one assessed species (yellowtail snapper). Therefore, NMFS expects that revenues of vessels landing at least one pound of an unassessed species or hogfish would fall within the range of vessel revenues described above. Some vessels, other than those in the golden crab fishery, may have caught and landed a combination of the 12 key species, hogfish, and unassessed species, and revenues therefrom are included in the foregoing estimates. Vessels that caught and landed any of the species addressed in this proposed rule may also operate in other fisheries, the revenues of which are not known and are not reflected in these totals. Based on the revenue information provided above, all commercial vessels expected to be affected by this proposed rule are assumed to be small entities. Because all entities expected to be affected by this proposed rule are assumed to be small entities, NMFS has determined that this proposed rule would affect a substantial number of small entities. However, the issue of disproportionate effects on small versus large entities does not arise in the present case. Designating a species to be overfished presupposes a stock assessment has been completed, implying that the payback action, i.e., a reduction in the following year’s catch limit or quota by the amount of an overage, in the proposed rule would not apply to unassessed species. Therefore, the harvest of unassessed species and attendant economic benefits would remain unaffected by the proposed rule. NMFS notes that a stock assessment underway for gray triggerfish, an unassessed species, is expected to be completed in 2016. Of the assessed species subject to the AM action in this proposed rule, only red porgy and snowy grouper are considered overfished. The recent stock assessment for hogfish defined three separate stocks, one of which is considered overfished and undergoing overfishing. Amendment 37 will address issues specifically related to hogfish. Since 2009, the commercial sector exceeded its allocation for red porgy in 2011 and 2013 by less than 3 percent each year. On the other hand, recreational landings of red porgy have been well below the sector’s allocation. Recreational landings of red porgy were 51 percent PO 00000 Frm 00090 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 58451 in 2012 and 48 percent in 2013 of the recreational sector’s ACL. Based on past and recent landings history, it is unlikely that the total red porgy ACL (sum of commercial and recreational sector ACLs) would be reached in the near future, so the payback action in this proposed rule would not be expected to affect harvesters of red porgy in the short term. The case with snowy grouper is slightly different from the other overfished species. The commercial ACL was exceeded by less than 10 percent in 2012, 2013, and 2014 while the recreational ACL was exceeded by more than 200 percent in 2012 and 2013. For the 2014 fishing season, recreational harvest of snowy grouper was closed on June 7, 2014. Based on landings history, it is likely that the payback action for snowy grouper in this proposed rule would adversely affect the profits of commercial vessels. The amount of payback for overages and resulting profit loss to the commercial vessels cannot be estimated. However, current regulations enable NMFS to implement a snowy grouper in-season closure for the commercial sector and in-season monitoring and possible closure for the recreational sector if the respective sector’s ACL is reached or projected to be reached. In addition, this rule proposes to implement an in-season closure for the snowy grouper recreational sector once the sector’s ACL is reached or projected to be reached. These current or proposed measures would be expected to limit the amount of overage, meaning that the resulting loss in profits to commercial vessels due to the payback provision should be small. The proposed commercial and recreational sector re-allocation of the ACL for dolphin would increase the share of the commercial sector at the expense of the recreational sector. In theory, this would tend to increase the revenues or profits of commercial vessels and potentially reduce the revenues or profits of for-hire vessels. In practice, commercial vessels are not expected to experience any profit changes in the near-term based on historical landings for the sector from 2009 through 2013. Relative to the proposed new sector allocations, based on applying the proposed allocation ratios to the current total ACL, commercial landings of dolphin (based on 2009–2013 commercial landings) would range from 33 percent to 80 percent of the sector’s ACL. In the years 2009 through 2013, the highest landings occurred in 2009 and the lowest in 2013. However, commercial fishing for dolphin closed on June 30, 2015, when E:\FR\FM\29SEP1.SGM 29SEP1 58452 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 188 / Tuesday, September 29, 2015 / Proposed Rules the commercial sector reached its ACL. If future commercial landings of dolphin were equal to or greater than they were in 2015, the proposed allocation ratio would be expected to increase the revenues, and possibly profits, of commercial vessels. As noted earlier, for-hire vessels would only be affected indirectly by the proposed rule. The following discussion describes the alternatives that were not selected as preferred by the Council. Four alternatives, including the preferred alternative (as described in the preamble), were considered for reducing the following year’s commercial ACL by the amount of the commercial overage. The first alternative, the no-action alternative, would not impose a payback provision for gag, golden tilefish, red snapper, snowy grouper, wreckfish, and golden crab while retaining the payback provision for the other species addressed in this action. This alternative would not address the need to create a consistent regulatory environment while preventing unnecessary negative socio-economic impacts, and ensure overfishing does not occur in accordance with the provisions set forth in the MagnusonStevens Act. The second alternative would require a payback for overages only if the species is overfished, and the third alternative would require a payback only if the combined total of commercial and recreational ACLs is exceeded. These two alternatives are more restrictive than the preferred alternative and, therefore, would be expected to have potentially larger adverse short-term economic effects on commercial entities than the preferred alternative. Because the commercial and recreational sector re-allocation of the ACL for dolphin would not be expected to result in any negative effects on any directly affected entities, the issue of significant alternatives to reduce any significant negative effects is not relevant. asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS List of Subjects in 50 CFR Part 622 Accountability measure, Annual catch limit, Dolphin, Fisheries, Fishing, Golden crab, Snapper-grouper, South Atlantic. Dated: September 17, 2015. Eileen Sobeck, Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. For the reasons set out in the preamble, 50 CFR part 622 is proposed to be amended as follows: VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:13 Sep 28, 2015 Jkt 235001 PART 622—FISHERIES OF THE CARIBBEAN, GULF OF MEXICO, AND SOUTH ATLANTIC 1. The authority citation for part 622 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. 2. In § 622.190, revise paragraph (a)(6) to read as follows: ■ § 622.190 Quotas. * * * * * (a) * * * (6) Red porgy—157,692 lb (71,528 kg), gutted weight; 164,000 lb (74,389 kg), round weight. * * * * * ■ 3. In § 622.193, revise paragraphs (a) through (d), (g), (i), (j) through (r), and (t) through (x) to read as follows: § 622.193 Annual catch limits (ACLs), annual catch targets (ACTs), and accountability measures (AMs). (a) Golden tilefish—(1) Commercial sector—(i) Hook-and-line component. If commercial landings for golden tilefish, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL (commercial quota) specified in § 622.190(a)(2)(ii), the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the hook-andline component of the commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. Applicable restrictions after a commercial quota closure are specified in § 622.190(c). (ii) Longline component. If commercial landings for golden tilefish, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL (commercial quota) specified in § 622.190(a)(2)(iii), the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the longline component of the commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. After the commercial ACL for the longline component is reached or projected to be reached, golden tilefish may not be fished for or possessed by a vessel with a golden tilefish longline endorsement. Applicable restrictions after a commercial quota closure are specified in § 622.190(c). (iii) If commercial landings for golden tilefish, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL (including both the hook-and-line and longline component ACLs) specified in § 622.190(a)(2)(i), and the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 558,036 lb (253,121 kg), gutted weight, 625,000 lb (283,495 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year, and golden tilefish are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification PO 00000 Frm 00091 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year. (2) Recreational sector—(i) If recreational landings for golden tilefish, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational ACL of 3,019 fish, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the bag and possession limits for golden tilefish in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (ii) If recreational landings for golden tilefish, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if the species is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 558,036 lb (253,121 kg), gutted weight, 625,000 lb (285,495 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. The AA will use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession limits for golden tilefish in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (b) Snowy grouper—(1) Commercial sector—(i) If commercial landings for snowy grouper, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL (commercial quota) specified in § 622.190(a)(1), the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. Applicable restrictions after a commercial quota closure are specified in § 622.190(c). (ii) If commercial landings for snowy grouper, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational ACL specified in § 622.193(b)(1)(iii) is exceeded, and snowy grouper are overfished based on the most recent E:\FR\FM\29SEP1.SGM 29SEP1 asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 188 / Tuesday, September 29, 2015 / Proposed Rules Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year. (iii) The combined commercial and recreational ACL for snowy grouper is 139,098 lb (63,094 kg), gutted weight, 164,136 lb (74,451 kg), round weight, for 2015; 151,518 lb (68,727 kg), gutted weight, 178,791 lb (81,098 kg), round weight, for 2016; 163,109 lb (73,985 kg), gutted weight, 192,469 lb (87,302 kg), round weight, for 2017; 173,873 lb (78,867 kg), gutted weight, 205,170 lb (93,064 kg), round weight, for 2018; 185,464 lb (84,125 kg), gutted weight, 218,848 lb (99,268 kg), round weight, for 2019 and subsequent years. (2) Recreational sector—(i) If recreational landings for snowy grouper, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational ACL, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and after the effective date of such notification, the bag and possession limits for snowy grouper in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. The recreational ACL for snowy grouper is 4,152 fish for 2015; 4,483 fish for 2016; 4,819 fish for 2017, 4,983 fish for 2018; 5,315 fish for 2019 and subsequent fishing years. (ii) If recreational landings for snowy grouper, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if snowy grouper are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL specified in § 622.193(b)(1)(iii) is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession limits for snowy grouper in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:13 Sep 28, 2015 Jkt 235001 (c) Gag—(1) Commercial sector—(i) If commercial landings for gag, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial quota specified in § 622.190(a)(7), the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for gag for the remainder of the fishing year. Applicable restrictions after a commercial quota closure are specified in § 622.190(c). (ii) If the commercial landings for gag, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL specified in § 622.193(c)(1)(iii), and the combined commercial and recreational ACL specified in § 622.193(c)(1)(iv), is exceeded during the same fishing year, and gag are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year. (iii) The commercial ACL for gag is 322,677 lb (146,364 kg), gutted weight, 380,759 lb (172,709 kg), round weight, for 2015; 325,100 lb (147,463 kg), gutted weight, 383,618 lb (174,006 kg), round weight, for 2016; 345,449 lb (197,516 kg), gutted weight, 407,630 lb (184,898 kg), round weight, for 2017; 362,406 lb (164,385 kg), gutted weight, 427,639 lb (193,974 kg), round weight, for 2018; and 374,519 lb (169,879 kg), gutted weight, 441,932 lb (200,457 kg), round weight, for 2019 and subsequent fishing years. (iv) The combined commercial and recreational ACL for gag is 632,700 lb (286,988 kg), gutted weight, 746,586 lb (338,646 kg), round weight, for 2015; 637,451 lb (289,143 kg), gutted weight, 752,192 lb (341,189 kg), round weight, for 2016; 677,351 lb (307,241 kg), gutted weight, 799,274 lb (362,545 kg), round weight, for 2017; 710,600 lb (322,323 kg), gutted weight, 838,508 lb (380,341 kg), round weight, for 2018; and 734,351 lb (333,096 kg), gutted weight, 866,534 lb (393,053 kg), round weight, for 2019 and subsequent fishing years. (2) Recreational sector—(i) If recreational landings for gag, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational ACL, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and after the effective date of such notification, the bag and possession limits for gag in or from the South PO 00000 Frm 00092 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 58453 Atlantic EEZ are zero. The recreational ACL for gag is 310,023 lb (148,025 kg), gutted weight, 365,827 (165,936 kg), round weight, for 2015; 312,351 lb (149,137 kg), gutted weight, 368,574 lb (175,981 kg), round weight, for 2016; 331,902 lb (158,472 kg), gutted weight, 391,644 lb (186,997 kg), round weight, for 2017; 348,194 lb (166,251 kg), gutted weight, 410,869 lb (196,176 kg), round weight, for 2018; and 359,832 lb (171,807 kg), gutted weight, 424,602 lb (202,733 kg), round weight, for 2019 and subsequent fishing years. (ii) If recreational landings for gag, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if the species is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL specified in § 622.193(c)(1)(iv) is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession limits for gag in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (d) Red grouper—(1) Commercial sector—(i) If commercial landings for red grouper, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL of 343,200 lb (155,673 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. On and after the effective date of such a notification, all sale or purchase of red grouper is prohibited and harvest or possession of red grouper in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession limits. These bag and possession limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters. (ii) If the commercial landings for red grouper, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 780,000 lb (353,802 kg), round E:\FR\FM\29SEP1.SGM 29SEP1 asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS 58454 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 188 / Tuesday, September 29, 2015 / Proposed Rules weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year, and the species is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL in the following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year. (2) Recreational sector—(i) If recreational landings for red grouper, as estimated by the SRD, are projected to reach the recreational ACL of 436,800 lb (198,129 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the bag and possession limits for red grouper in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (ii) If recreational landings for red grouper, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if the species is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 780,000 lb (353,802 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. The AA will use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the length of the recreational season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession limits for red grouper in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. * * * * * (g) Black grouper—(1) Commercial sector—(i) If commercial landings for black grouper, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL of 96,844 lb (43,928 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. On and after the effective date of such a notification, all sale or purchase of black grouper is prohibited and harvest or possession of black grouper VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:13 Sep 28, 2015 Jkt 235001 in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession limits. These bag and possession limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters. (ii) If commercial landings for black grouper, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 262,594 lb (119,111 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year, and the species is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year. (2) Recreational sector—(i) If recreational landings for black grouper, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational ACL of 165,750 lb (75,183 kg), round weight, and the AA determines that a closure is necessary by using the best scientific information available, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the bag and possession limits for black grouper in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (ii) If recreational landings for black grouper, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if black grouper are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 262,594 lb (119,111 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing PO 00000 Frm 00093 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 season and ACL, the bag and possession limits for black grouper in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. * * * * * (i) Scamp—(1) Commercial sector—(i) If commercial landings for scamp, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL of 219,375 lb (99,507 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. On and after the effective date of such a notification, all sale or purchase of scamp is prohibited and harvest or possession of scamp in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession limits. These bag and possession limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters. (ii) If commercial landings for scamp, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 335,744 lb (152,291 kg), round weight, is exceeded, and scamp are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year. (2) Recreational sector—(i) If recreational landings for scamp, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational ACL of 116,369 lb (52,784 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the bag and possession limits for scamp in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (ii) If recreational landings for scamp, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if scamp are overfished based E:\FR\FM\29SEP1.SGM 29SEP1 asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 188 / Tuesday, September 29, 2015 / Proposed Rules on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 335,744 lb (152,291 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession limits for scamp in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (j) Other SASWG combined (including red hind, rock hind, yellowmouth grouper, yellowfin grouper, coney, and graysby)—(1) Commercial sector—(i) If commercial landings for other SASWG combined, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL of 55,542 lb (25,193 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for this complex for the remainder of the fishing year. On and after the effective date of such a notification, all sale or purchase of red hind, rock hind, yellowmouth grouper, yellowfin grouper, coney, and graysby is prohibited, and harvest or possession of any of these species in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession limits. These bag and possession limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters. (ii) If commercial landings for other SASWG combined, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 104,190 lb (47,260 kg), round weight, is exceeded, and at least one of the species in other SASWG combined is overfished based on the most recent status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year. (2) Recreational sector—(i) If recreational landings for other SASWG combined, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational ACL of 48,648 lb (22,066 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:13 Sep 28, 2015 Jkt 235001 year regardless if any stock in other SASWG combined is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the bag and possession limits for any species in the other SASWG combined in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (ii) If recreational landings for other SASWG combined, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if at least one of the species in other SASWG combined is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 104,190 lb (47,260 kg) is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession limits for any species in the other SASWG combined in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (k) Greater amberjack—(1) Commercial sector—(i) If commercial landings for greater amberjack, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL (commercial quota) specified in § 622.190(a)(3), the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. Applicable restrictions after a commercial quota closure are specified in § 622.190(c). (ii) If commercial landings for greater amberjack, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 1,968,001 lb (892,670 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year, and the species is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL in the following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year. PO 00000 Frm 00094 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 58455 (2) Recreational sector—(i) If recreational landings for greater amberjack, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational ACL of 1,167,837 lb (529,722 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the bag and possession limits for greater amberjack in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (ii) If recreational landings for greater amberjack, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if the species is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 1,968,001 lb (892,670 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. The AA will use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the length of the recreational season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession limits for greater amberjack in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (l) Other jacks complex (including lesser amberjack, almaco jack, and banded rudderfish, combined)—(1) Commercial sector—(i) If commercial landings for the other jacks complex, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL of 189,422 lb (85,920 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for the other jacks complex for the remainder of the fishing year. On and after the effective date of such a notification, all sale or purchase of lesser amberjack, almaco jack, and banded rudderfish is prohibited, and harvest or possession of any of these species in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession limits. These bag and possession limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic snapper- E:\FR\FM\29SEP1.SGM 29SEP1 asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS 58456 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 188 / Tuesday, September 29, 2015 / Proposed Rules grouper has been issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters. (ii) If commercial landings for the other jacks complex, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 457,221 lb (207,392 kg), round weight, is exceeded, and at least one of the species in the other jacks complex is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year. (2) Recreational sector—(i) If recreational landings for the other jacks complex, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational ACL of 267,799 lb (121,472 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year regardless if any stock in the other jacks complex is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the bag and possession limits for any species in the other jacks complex in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (ii) If recreational landings for the other jacks complex, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if at least one of the species in the other jacks complex is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 457,221 lb (207,392 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession limits for any species in the other jacks complex in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (m) Bar jack—(1) Commercial sector— (i) If commercial landings for bar jack, VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:13 Sep 28, 2015 Jkt 235001 as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL of 13,228 lb (6,000 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. On and after the effective date of such a notification, all sale or purchase of bar jack is prohibited and harvest or possession of bar jack in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession limits. These bag and possession limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters. (ii) If commercial landings for bar jack, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 62,249 lb (28,236 kg), round weight, is exceeded, and bar jack are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year. (2) Recreational sector—(i) If recreational landings for bar jack, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational ACL of 49,021 lb (22,236 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the bag and possession limits for bar jack in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (ii) If recreational landings for bar jack, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if bar jack are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 62,249 lb (28,236 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use the best scientific information available to PO 00000 Frm 00095 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 determine if reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession limits for bar jack in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (n) Yellowtail snapper—(1) Commercial sector—(i) If commercial landings for yellowtail snapper, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL of 1,596,510 lb (724,165 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. On and after the effective date of such a notification, all sale or purchase of yellowtail snapper is prohibited and harvest or possession of yellowtail snapper in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession limits. These bag and possession limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic snappergrouper has been issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters. (ii) If commercial landings for yellowtail snapper, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 3,037,500 lb (1,377,787 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year, and yellowtail snapper are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year. (2) Recreational sector—(i) If recreational landings for yellowtail snapper, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational ACL of 1,440,990 lb (653,622 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the bag and possession limits for yellowtail snapper in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (ii) If recreational landings for yellowtail snapper, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year E:\FR\FM\29SEP1.SGM 29SEP1 asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 188 / Tuesday, September 29, 2015 / Proposed Rules recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if the species is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 3,037,500 lb (1,377,787 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. The AA will use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession limits for yellowtail snapper in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (o) Mutton snapper—(1) Commercial sector—(i) If commercial landings for mutton snapper, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL of 157,743 lb (71,551 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. On and after the effective date of such a notification, all sale or purchase of mutton snapper is prohibited and harvest or possession of mutton snapper in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession limits. These bag and possession limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters. (ii) If commercial landings for mutton snapper, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 926,600 lb (420,299 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year, and the species is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL in the following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year. (2) Recreational sector—(i) If recreational landings for mutton snapper, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational ACL of 768,857 lb (348,748 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:13 Sep 28, 2015 Jkt 235001 with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the bag and possession limits for mutton snapper in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (ii) If recreational landings for mutton snapper, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if the species is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 926,600 lb (420,299 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession limits for mutton snapper in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (p) Other snappers complex (including cubera snapper, gray snapper, lane snapper, dog snapper, and mahogany snapper)—(1) Commercial sector—(i) If commercial landings for the other snappers complex, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the complex commercial ACL of 344,884 lb (156,437 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for this complex for the remainder of the fishing year. On and after the effective date of such a notification, all sale or purchase of cubera snapper, gray snapper, lane snapper, dog snapper, and mahogany snapper is prohibited, and harvest or possession of any of these species in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession limits. These bag and possession limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters. PO 00000 Frm 00096 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 58457 (ii) If commercial landings for the other snappers complex, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 1,517,716 lb (688,424 kg), round weight, is exceeded, and at least one of the species in the other snappers complex is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year. (2) Recreational sector—(i) If recreational landings for the other snappers complex, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational ACL of 1,172,832 lb (531,988 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year regardless if any stock in the other snappers complex is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the bag and possession limits for any species in the other snappers complex in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (ii) If recreational landings for the other snappers complex, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if at least one of the species in the other snappers complex is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 1,517,716 lb (688,424 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession limits for any species in the other snappers complex in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (q) Gray triggerfish—(1) Commercial sector—(i) If commercial landings for gray triggerfish, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the E:\FR\FM\29SEP1.SGM 29SEP1 asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS 58458 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 188 / Tuesday, September 29, 2015 / Proposed Rules commercial ACL (commercial quota) specified in § 622.190(a)(8)(i) or (ii), the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. Applicable restrictions after a commercial quota closure are specified in § 622.190(c). (ii) If commercial landings for gray triggerfish, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 716,999 lb (325,225 kg), round weight, is exceeded, and gray triggerfish are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year. (2) Recreational sector—(i) If recreational landings for gray triggerfish, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational ACL of 404,675 lb (183,557 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the bag and possession limits for gray triggerfish in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (ii) If recreational landings for gray triggerfish, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if gray triggerfish are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 716,999 lb (325,225 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession limits for gray triggerfish in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (r) Wreckfish—(1) Commercial sector—(i) The ITQ program for wreckfish in the South Atlantic serves VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:13 Sep 28, 2015 Jkt 235001 as the accountability measures for commercial wreckfish. The commercial ACL for wreckfish is equal to the commercial quota specified in § 622.190(b). Applicable restrictions after a commercial quota closure are specified in § 622.190(c). (ii) The combined commercial and recreational ACL for wreckfish is 433,000 lb (196,405 kg), round weight, for 2015; 423,700 lb (192,187 kg), round weight, for 2016; 414,200 lb (187,878 kg), round weight, for 2017; 406,300 lb (184,295 kg), round weight, for 2018; 396,800 lb (179,985 kg), round weight, for 2019; and 389,100 lb (176,493 kg), round weight, for 2020 and subsequent fishing years. (2) Recreational sector—(i) If recreational landings for wreckfish, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational ACL specified in § 622.193(r)(2)(iii), the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the bag and possession limits for wreckfish in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (ii) If recreational landings for wreckfish, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if the species is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL specified in § 622.193(r)(1)(ii) is exceeded during the same fishing year. The AA will use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession limits for wreckfish in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (iii) The recreational ACL for wreckfish is 21,650 lb (9,820 kg), round weight, for 2015; 21,185 lb (9,609 kg), round weight, for 2016; 20,710 lb (9,394 kg), round weight, for 2017; 20,315 lb (9,215 kg), round weight, for 2018; 19,840 lb (8,999 kg), round weight, for PO 00000 Frm 00097 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 2019; and 19,455 lb (8,825 kg), round weight, for 2020 and subsequent fishing years. * * * * * (t) Atlantic spadefish—(1) Commercial sector—(i) If commercial landings for Atlantic spadefish, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL of 150,552 lb (68,289 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. On and after the effective date of such a notification, all sale or purchase of Atlantic spadefish is prohibited and harvest or possession of Atlantic spadefish in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession limits. These bag and possession limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters. (ii) If commercial landings for Atlantic spadefish, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 812,478 lb (368,534 kg), round weight, is exceeded, and Atlantic spadefish are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year. (2) Recreational sector—(i) If recreational landings for Atlantic spadefish, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational ACL of 661,926 lb (300,245 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the bag and possession limits for Atlantic spadefish in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (ii) If recreational landings for Atlantic spadefish, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of E:\FR\FM\29SEP1.SGM 29SEP1 asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 188 / Tuesday, September 29, 2015 / Proposed Rules the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if Atlantic spadefish are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 812,478 lb (368,534 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession limits for Atlantic spadefish in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (u) Hogfish—(1) Commercial sector— (i) If commercial landings for hogfish, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL of 49,469 lb (22,439 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. On and after the effective date of such a notification, all sale or purchase of hogfish is prohibited and harvest or possession of hogfish in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession limits. These bag and possession limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters. (ii) If commercial landings for hogfish, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 134,824 lb (61,155 kg), round weight, is exceeded, and hogfish are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year. (2) Recreational sector—(i) If recreational landings for hogfish, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational ACL of 85,355 lb (38,716 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the bag and possession VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:13 Sep 28, 2015 Jkt 235001 limits for hogfish in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (ii) If recreational landings for hogfish, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if hogfish are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 134,824 lb (61,155 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession limits for hogfish in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (v) Red porgy—(1) Commercial sector—(i) If commercial landings for red porgy, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL (commercial quota) specified in § 622.190(a)(6), the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. Applicable restrictions after a commercial quota closure are specified in § 622.190(c). (ii) If commercial landings for red porgy, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 315,384 lb (143,056 kg), gutted weight, 328,000 lb (148,778 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year, and red porgy are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL in the following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year. (2) Recreational sector—(i) If recreational landings for red porgy, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational ACL of 157,692 lb (71,528 kg), gutted weight, 164,000 lb (74,389 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines PO 00000 Frm 00098 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 58459 that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the bag and possession limits for red porgy in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (ii) If recreational landings for red porgy, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if the species is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 315,384 lb (143,056 kg), gutted weight, 328,000 lb (148,778 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. The AA will use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession limits for red porgy in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (w) Other porgies complex (including jolthead porgy, knobbed porgy, whitebone porgy, scup, and saucereye porgy)—(1) Commercial sector—(i) If commercial landings for the other porgies complex, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL of 36,348 lb (16,487 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for the other porgies complex for the remainder of the fishing year. On and after the effective date of such a notification, all sale or purchase of jolthead porgy, knobbed porgy, whitebone porgy, scup, and saucereye porgy is prohibited, and harvest or possession of any of these species in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession limits. These bag and possession limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters. (ii) If commercial landings for the other porgies complex, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 143,262 lb (64,983 E:\FR\FM\29SEP1.SGM 29SEP1 asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS 58460 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 188 / Tuesday, September 29, 2015 / Proposed Rules kg), round weight, is exceeded, and at least one of the species in the complex is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year. (2) Recreational sector—(i) If recreational landings for the other porgies complex, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational ACL of 106,914 lb (48,495 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year regardless if any stock in the other porgies complex is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the bag and possession limits for any species in the other porgies complex in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (ii) If recreational landings for the other porgies complex, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if one of the species in the complex is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 143,262 lb (64,983 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession limits for any species in the other porgies complex in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (x) Grunts complex (including white grunt, sailor’s choice, tomtate, and margate)—(1) Commercial sector—(i) If commercial landings for the grunts complex, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL of 217,903 lb (98,839 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for this complex for the remainder of the fishing year. On and after the effective date of VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:13 Sep 28, 2015 Jkt 235001 such a notification, all sale or purchase of white grunt, sailor’s choice, tomtate, and margate is prohibited, and harvest or possession of these species in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession limits. These bag and possession limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters. (ii) If commercial landings for the grunts complex, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 836,025 lb (379,215 kg), round weight, and at least one of the species in the complex is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register, at or near the beginning of the following fishing year to reduce the commercial ACL for that following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year. (2) Recreational sector—(i) If recreational landings for the grunts complex, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational ACL of 618,122 lb (280,375 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year regardless if any stock in the grunts complex is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the bag and possession limits for any species in the grunts complex in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. (ii) If recreational landings for the grunts complex, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if at least one of the species in the grunts complex is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 836,025 lb (379,215 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use the best scientific information available to determine if PO 00000 Frm 00099 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession limits for any species in the grunts complex in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. * * * * * ■ 4. In § 622.251, revise paragraph (a) to read as follows: § 622.251 Annual catch limits (ACLs), annual catch targets (ACTs), and accountability measures (AMs). (a) Commercial sector—(1) If commercial landings for golden crab, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the ACL of 2 million lb (907,185 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the golden crab fishery for the remainder of the fishing year. On and after the effective date of such a notification, all harvest, possession, sale, or purchase of golden crab in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is prohibited. (2) If commercial landings for golden crab, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the ACL, and the species is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the ACL in the following fishing year by the amount of the ACL overage in the prior fishing year. * * * * * ■ 5. In § 622.280, revise paragraphs (a)(1)(i) and (a)(2)(i) and the last two sentences in paragraph (b)(1)(i) to read as follows: § 622.280 Annual catch limits (ACLs) and accountability measures (AMs). (a) * * * (1) * * * (i) If commercial landings for Atlantic dolphin, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL of 1,534,485 lb (696,031 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. On and after the effective date of such a notification, all sale or purchase of Atlantic dolphin is prohibited and harvest or possession of Atlantic dolphin in or from the Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession limits. These bag and possession limits apply in the Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for Atlantic dolphin and wahoo has been issued, without regard to where such E:\FR\FM\29SEP1.SGM 29SEP1 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 188 / Tuesday, September 29, 2015 / Proposed Rules asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters. * * * * * (2) * * * (i) If recreational landings for Atlantic dolphin, as estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL of 13,810,361 lb (6,264,274 kg), round weight, then during the following fishing year recreational landings will VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:13 Sep 28, 2015 Jkt 235001 be monitored for a persistence in increased landings. * * * * * (b) * * * (1) * * * (i) * * * On and after the effective date of such a notification, all sale or purchase of Atlantic wahoo is prohibited and harvest or possession of Atlantic wahoo in or from the Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession PO 00000 Frm 00100 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 9990 58461 limits. These bag and possession limits apply in the Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for Atlantic dolphin and wahoo has been issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters. * * * * * [FR Doc. 2015–24576 Filed 9–28–15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P E:\FR\FM\29SEP1.SGM 29SEP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 80, Number 188 (Tuesday, September 29, 2015)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 58448-58461]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2015-24576]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 622

[Docket No. 140819686-5840-01]
RIN 0648-BE38


Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; 
Snapper-Grouper Fishery and Golden Crab Fishery of the South Atlantic, 
and Dolphin and Wahoo Fishery of the Atlantic

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 implement management measures described in 
Amendment 34 to the Fishery Management Plan (FMP) for the Snapper-
Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic Region, Amendment 9 to the FMP 
for the Golden Crab Fishery of the South Atlantic Region, and Amendment 
8 to the FMP for the Dolphin and Wahoo Fishery of the Atlantic; 
collectively referred to as the Generic Accountability Measures (AM) 
and Dolphin Allocation Amendment (Generic AM Amendment), as prepared 
and submitted by the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council 
(Council). If implemented, this proposed rule would revise the 
commercial and recreational AMs for numerous snapper-grouper species 
and golden crab. This proposed rule would also revise commercial and 
recreational sector allocations for dolphin in the Atlantic. The 
proposed actions are intended to make the AMs consistent for snapper-
grouper species addressed in this proposed rule and for golden crab, 
and revise the allocations between the commercial and recreational 
sectors for dolphin.

DATES: Written comments must be received on or before October 29, 2015.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments on the proposed rule, identified by

[[Page 58449]]

``NOAA-NMFS-2013-0181'' by either of the following methods:
     Electronic Submission: Submit all electronic comments via 
the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal. Go to www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-2013-0181, click the ``Comment Now!'' icon, 
complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments.
     Mail: Submit all written comments to Mary Janine Vara, 
NMFS Southeast Regional Office (SERO), 263 13th Avenue South, St. 
Petersburg, FL 33701.
    Instructions: Comments sent by any other method, to any other 
address or individual, or received after the end of the comment period, 
may not be considered by NMFS. All comments received are a part of the 
public record and will generally be posted for public viewing on 
www.regulations.gov without change. All personal identifying 
information (e.g., name, address, etc.), confidential business 
information, or otherwise sensitive information submitted voluntarily 
by the sender will be publicly accessible. NMFS will accept anonymous 
comments (enter ``N/A'' in the required fields if you wish to remain 
anonymous).
    Electronic copies of the Generic AM Amendment, which includes an 
environmental assessment, initial regulatory flexibility analysis 
(IRFA), regulatory impact review, and fishery impact statement, may be 
obtained from www.regulations.gov or the SERO Web site at http://sero.nmfs.noaa.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mary Janine Vara, NMFS SERO, 
telephone: 727-824-5305, or email: mary.vara@noaa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The snapper-grouper fishery in the South 
Atlantic is managed under the FMP for the Snapper-Grouper Fishery of 
the South Atlantic Region (Snapper-Grouper FMP). The golden crab 
fishery in the South Atlantic is managed under the FMP for the Golden 
Crab Fishery of the South Atlantic Region (Golden Crab FMP). The 
dolphin and wahoo fishery in the Atlantic is managed under the FMP for 
the Dolphin and Wahoo Fishery of the Atlantic (Dolphin Wahoo FMP). The 
FMPs were prepared by the Council and implemented by NMFS through 
regulations at 50 CFR part 622 under the authority of the Magnuson-
Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act).

Background

    The Magnuson-Stevens Act requires that NMFS and regional fishery 
management councils prevent overfishing and achieve, on a continuing 
basis, the optimum yield from federally managed fish stocks. These 
mandates are intended to ensure that fishery resources are managed for 
the greatest overall benefit to the nation, particularly with respect 
to providing food production and recreational opportunities, and 
protecting marine ecosystems. To further this goal, the Magnuson-
Stevens Act requires fishery managers to minimize bycatch and bycatch 
mortality to the extent practicable.

Management Measures Contained in This Proposed Rule

Modifications to Commercial and Recreational AMs for Snapper-Grouper 
Species and Golden Crab

    This proposed rule would revise the AMs for golden tilefish, snowy 
grouper, gag, red grouper, black grouper, scamp, the other shallow-
water grouper complex (SASWG: red hind, rock hind, yellowmouth grouper, 
yellowfin grouper, coney, and graysby), greater amberjack, the other 
jacks complex (lesser amberjack, almaco jack, and banded rudderfish), 
bar jack, yellowtail snapper, mutton snapper, the other snappers 
complex (cubera snapper, gray snapper, lane snapper, dog snapper, and 
mahogany snapper), gray triggerfish, wreckfish (recreational sector), 
Atlantic spadefish, hogfish, red porgy, the other porgies complex 
(jolthead porgy, knobbed porgy, whitebone porgy, scup, and saucereye 
porgy), and golden crab (commercial sector).
    Currently, the snapper-grouper species and golden crab addressed in 
this proposed rule have slightly different AMs in place compared to 
other snapper-grouper species. This proposed rule would modify the AMs 
for these species, including those identified in the species complexes, 
to make them consistent with the majority of the AMs already in place 
for other snapper-grouper species. Specifically, the proposed rule 
would update the recreational AMs to allow NMFS to close recreational 
sectors when the recreational annual catch limits (ACLs) are met or are 
projected to be met, unless NMFS determines that no closure is 
necessary based on the best scientific information available. The 
proposed rule would also modify the AMs to trigger post-season ACL 
reductions in the commercial and recreational sectors in the year 
following an ACL overage under certain situations.
    If the recreational sector exceeds its ACL, NMFS would monitor the 
recreational sector for persistence in increased landings during the 
following fishing year. In the following fishing year, if the best 
scientific information available determines it necessary, NMFS would 
publish a notice in the Federal Register to reduce the length of 
fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the 
recreational ACL overage if the species, or one or more species in a 
species complex, is overfished and if the total ACL (commercial ACL and 
recreational ACL) was exceeded in the prior fishing year.
    If the commercial sector exceeds its ACL, NMFS would publish a 
notice in the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL in the 
following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage if 
the species, or one or more species in a species complex, is overfished 
and if the total ACL (commercial ACL and recreational ACL) was exceeded 
in the prior fishing year.
    Modifying the AMs in this manner would create regulatory 
consistency among the majority of federally managed species in the 
South Atlantic region.

Modifications to Commercial and Recreational Sector Allocations for 
Dolphin

    The Council has expressed concern that the variability in 
commercial annual landings of dolphin could result in the commercial 
ACL being exceeded in the future, and that the recreational sector for 
dolphin has not come close to reaching its ACL in recent years. 
Therefore, in the Generic AM Amendment, the Council assessed allocation 
methods for revising the fishing sector allocations for dolphin.
    The current sector allocations for dolphin are 7.54 percent for the 
commercial sector and 92.46 percent for the recreational sector. The 
Council chose these allocations using a sector allocation formula where 
50 percent of the sector allocations are based on a longer-term 
landings series (1999-2008) and 50 percent of the sector allocations 
are based on a shorter time series (2006-2008). This results in the 
current ACL of 1,157,001 lb (524,807 kg), round weight, for the 
commercial sector and 14,187,845 lb (6,435,498 kg), round weight, for 
the recreational sector.
    In the Generic AM Amendment, the Council chose a sector allocation 
formula for dolphin based on the average of the percentages of the 
total catch from 2008-2012. Thus, this proposed rule would revise the 
commercial sector allocation to be 10 percent with an ACL of 1,534,485 
lb (696,031 kg), round weight, and the recreational sector allocation 
for dolphin to be 90 percent with an ACL

[[Page 58450]]

of 13,810,361 lb (6,264,274 kg), round weight. This change in sector 
allocation would constitute an ACL increase for the commercial sector 
and an ACL decrease for the recreational sector of 377,484 lb (171,224 
kg), round weight.

Other Changes to the Codified Text

    This proposed rule would clarify the AM provisions in Sec.  622.193 
(the ACLs/AMs section of the regulations for South Atlantic snapper-
grouper species) that would reduce a season length in the following 
recreational fishing year. These clarifications would aid law 
enforcement efforts. For those snapper-grouper species that have a 
post-season AM if a recreational ACL is exceeded, under certain 
conditions NMFS would reduce the season length (i.e., implement a 
closure) for that species or species complex in the following fishing 
year by publishing an AM notification and closure date for the 
recreational sector for that species or species complex in the Federal 
Register. In this proposed rule, NMFS would add a closure provision to 
the regulations for these situations. Specifically, the provision 
states that when the closure becomes effective, the bag and possession 
limits for the applicable species or species complex in or from the 
South Atlantic EEZ would be reduced to zero.
    In addition, this proposed rule would remove and consolidate 
language in Sec.  622.190(a)(6) for the red porgy commercial quota from 
past fishing years that is no longer applicable.
    Finally, this proposed rule would fix an error in Sec.  622.280 for 
Atlantic dolphin and wahoo. Atlantic dolphin and wahoo are managed off 
the Atlantic states (Maine through the east coast of Florida) via the 
Dolphin Wahoo FMP; however, in the AMs section of the codified text, 
the closure provisions currently apply in the South Atlantic EEZ only. 
This inadvertent error was implemented in the rulemaking for the 
Comprehensive ACL Amendment (77 FR 15916, March 16, 2011). This 
proposed rule would change ``South Atlantic EEZ'' to ``Atlantic EEZ'' 
in the AMs for dolphin and wahoo in paragraphs (a)(1)(i) and (b)(1)(i) 
of Sec.  622.280, which is consistent with the FMP for management of 
these species from Maine through the east coast of Florida.

Classification

    Pursuant to section 304(b)(1)(A) of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, the 
NMFS Assistant Administrator has determined that this proposed rule is 
consistent with Amendment 34 to the FMP for the Snapper-Grouper 
Fishery, Amendment 9 to the FMP for the Golden Crab Fishery, Amendment 
8 to the FMP for the Dolphin and Wahoo Fishery, other provisions of the 
Magnuson-Stevens Act, and other applicable laws, subject to further 
consideration after public comment.
    This proposed rule has been determined to be not significant for 
purposes of Executive Order 12866.
    NMFS prepared an IRFA, as required by section 603 of the Regulatory 
Flexibility Act, for this proposed rule. The IRFA describes the 
economic impact this proposed rule, if adopted, would have on small 
entities. A description of the action, why it is being considered, the 
objectives of, and legal basis for this action are contained at the 
beginning of this section in the preamble and in the SUMMARY section of 
the preamble. A copy of the full analysis is available from NMFS (see 
ADDRESSES). A summary of the IRFA follows.
    The Magnuson-Stevens Act provides the statutory basis for this 
proposed rule. No duplicative, overlapping, or conflicting Federal 
rules have been identified. In addition, no new reporting, record-
keeping, or other compliance requirements are introduced by this 
proposed rule. Accordingly, this proposed rule does not implicate the 
Paperwork Reduction Act.
    NMFS expects this proposed rule, if implemented, to directly affect 
federally permitted commercial fishermen harvesting snapper-grouper 
species or golden crab in the South Atlantic. NMFS also expects this 
proposed rule to affect federally permitted commercial fishermen 
harvesting dolphin in the South Atlantic and off states north of North 
Carolina (northeastern states). The Small Business Administration 
established size criteria for all major industry sectors in the U.S. 
including fish harvesters and for-hire operations. A business involved 
in fish harvesting is classified as a small business if independently 
owned and operated, is not dominant in its field of operation 
(including its affiliates), and its combined annual receipts are not in 
excess of $20.5 million (NAICS code 114111, finfish fishing) for all of 
its affiliated operations worldwide.
    Charter vessels and headboats (for-hire vessels) sell fishing 
services, which include the harvest of any species considered in this 
proposed rule, to recreational anglers. These vessels provide a 
platform for the opportunity to fish and not a guarantee to catch or 
harvest any species, though expectations of successful fishing, however 
defined, likely factor into the decision to purchase these services. 
Changing the allowable harvest of a species, including in-season 
closures and post-season ACL overage adjustments, only defines what can 
be kept and does not explicitly prevent the continued offer of for-hire 
fishing services. In response to a change in the allowable harvest, 
including a zero-fish limit or fishery closure, fishing for other 
species could continue. Because the changes considered in this proposed 
rule would not directly alter the service sold by these vessels, this 
proposed rule would not directly apply to or regulate their operations. 
For-hire vessels would continue to be able to offer their core product, 
which is an attempt to ``put anglers on fish,'' provide the opportunity 
for anglers to catch whatever their skills enable them to catch, and 
keep those fish that they desire to keep and are legal to keep. Any 
change in demand for these fishing services and associated economic 
affects as a result of changing a quota or fishery closures would be a 
consequence of behavioral change by anglers, secondary to any direct 
effect on anglers and, therefore, an indirect effect of the proposed 
regulatory action. Because the effects on for-hire vessels would be 
indirect, they fall outside the scope of the RFA. Recreational anglers, 
who may be directly affected by the changes in this proposed rule, are 
not small entities under the RFA.
    NMFS has not identified any other small entities that would be 
expected to be directly affected by this proposed rule.
    The snapper-grouper fishery is a multi-species fishery and vessels 
generally land many species on the same trips. Vessels in the dolphin 
fishery also catch other species jointly with dolphin. The golden crab 
fishery is more specialized than either the snapper-grouper or dolphin 
fishery. Because of the possibility that some vessels land only species 
not affected by this proposed rule, the following provides a 
description of vessels and their revenues by focusing on the key 
species (black grouper, mutton snapper, yellowtail snapper, greater 
amberjack, red porgy, gag, golden tilefish, red grouper, snowy grouper, 
wreckfish, golden crab, and dolphin) addressed in this proposed rule. 
Hogfish, a recently assessed species, is not included here as a key 
species for this analysis as it is being addressed by the Council in 
Amendment 37. However, revenue approximations for vessels landing 
hogfish are noted below. The number of vessels and revenues (2013 
dollars) are annual averages for the period 2009 through 2013, unless 
otherwise noted. Data for the years 2009 through 2013

[[Page 58451]]

were the latest complete five-year data available when the Council 
considered the actions in this proposed rule. Approximately 188 vessels 
landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of black grouper generated 
approximately $54,000 in revenues from black grouper and other species; 
266 vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of mutton snapper had 
revenues of approximately $51,000 from mutton snapper and other 
species; 252 vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) yellowtail snapper 
had revenues of approximately $38,000 from yellowtail snapper and other 
species; 295 vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of greater 
amberjack had revenues of approximately $53,000 from greater amberjack 
and other species; 191 vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of red 
porgy had revenues of approximately $60,000 from red porgy and other 
species; 273 vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of gag had 
revenues of approximately $49,000 from gag and other species; 63 
vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of golden tilefish had revenues 
of approximately $68,000 from golden tilefish and other species; 278 
vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of red grouper had revenues of 
approximately $50,000 from red grouper and other species; 95 vessels 
landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of red snapper had revenues of 
approximately $57,000 from red snapper and other species; 138 vessels 
landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of snowy grouper had revenues of 
approximately $78,000 from snowy grouper and other species; and 488 
vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of dolphin had revenues of 
approximately $64,000 from dolphin and other species. Revenues for 
vessels landing at least 1 lb (0.45 kg) of wreckfish or golden crab can 
be approximated based on total revenues from landings of those species 
and the number of permits. As of August 6, 2015, there were five 
wreckfish permits and 11 golden crab permits. For fishing years 2009/
2010 through 2013/2014, annual revenues from wreckfish landings 
averaged $752,881, implying average annual revenue per wreckfish vessel 
of approximately $188,000. From 2009 through 2013, annual revenues from 
golden crab landings averaged $1,419,843, implying average annual 
revenue per golden crab vessel of approximately $142,000. Most of the 
unassessed species (almaco jack, banded rudderfish, lesser amberjack, 
gray snapper, lane snapper, cubera snapper, dog snapper, mahogany 
snapper, white grunt, sailors choice, tomtate, margate, red hind, rock 
hind, yellowmouth grouper, yellowfin grouper, coney, graysby, jolthead 
porgy, knobbed porgy, saucereye porgy, scup, whitebone porgy, Atlantic 
spadefish, bar jack, scamp, and gray triggerfish), and hogfish had 
lower dockside revenues than many of the key species. In fact, the 
highest dockside values of an unassessed species (scamp) were much 
lower than those of at least one assessed species (yellowtail snapper). 
Therefore, NMFS expects that revenues of vessels landing at least one 
pound of an unassessed species or hogfish would fall within the range 
of vessel revenues described above.
    Some vessels, other than those in the golden crab fishery, may have 
caught and landed a combination of the 12 key species, hogfish, and 
unassessed species, and revenues therefrom are included in the 
foregoing estimates. Vessels that caught and landed any of the species 
addressed in this proposed rule may also operate in other fisheries, 
the revenues of which are not known and are not reflected in these 
totals. Based on the revenue information provided above, all commercial 
vessels expected to be affected by this proposed rule are assumed to be 
small entities.
    Because all entities expected to be affected by this proposed rule 
are assumed to be small entities, NMFS has determined that this 
proposed rule would affect a substantial number of small entities. 
However, the issue of disproportionate effects on small versus large 
entities does not arise in the present case.
    Designating a species to be overfished presupposes a stock 
assessment has been completed, implying that the payback action, i.e., 
a reduction in the following year's catch limit or quota by the amount 
of an overage, in the proposed rule would not apply to unassessed 
species. Therefore, the harvest of unassessed species and attendant 
economic benefits would remain unaffected by the proposed rule. NMFS 
notes that a stock assessment underway for gray triggerfish, an 
unassessed species, is expected to be completed in 2016. Of the 
assessed species subject to the AM action in this proposed rule, only 
red porgy and snowy grouper are considered overfished. The recent stock 
assessment for hogfish defined three separate stocks, one of which is 
considered overfished and undergoing overfishing. Amendment 37 will 
address issues specifically related to hogfish. Since 2009, the 
commercial sector exceeded its allocation for red porgy in 2011 and 
2013 by less than 3 percent each year. On the other hand, recreational 
landings of red porgy have been well below the sector's allocation. 
Recreational landings of red porgy were 51 percent in 2012 and 48 
percent in 2013 of the recreational sector's ACL. Based on past and 
recent landings history, it is unlikely that the total red porgy ACL 
(sum of commercial and recreational sector ACLs) would be reached in 
the near future, so the payback action in this proposed rule would not 
be expected to affect harvesters of red porgy in the short term. The 
case with snowy grouper is slightly different from the other overfished 
species. The commercial ACL was exceeded by less than 10 percent in 
2012, 2013, and 2014 while the recreational ACL was exceeded by more 
than 200 percent in 2012 and 2013. For the 2014 fishing season, 
recreational harvest of snowy grouper was closed on June 7, 2014. Based 
on landings history, it is likely that the payback action for snowy 
grouper in this proposed rule would adversely affect the profits of 
commercial vessels. The amount of payback for overages and resulting 
profit loss to the commercial vessels cannot be estimated. However, 
current regulations enable NMFS to implement a snowy grouper in-season 
closure for the commercial sector and in-season monitoring and possible 
closure for the recreational sector if the respective sector's ACL is 
reached or projected to be reached. In addition, this rule proposes to 
implement an in-season closure for the snowy grouper recreational 
sector once the sector's ACL is reached or projected to be reached. 
These current or proposed measures would be expected to limit the 
amount of overage, meaning that the resulting loss in profits to 
commercial vessels due to the payback provision should be small. The 
proposed commercial and recreational sector re-allocation of the ACL 
for dolphin would increase the share of the commercial sector at the 
expense of the recreational sector. In theory, this would tend to 
increase the revenues or profits of commercial vessels and potentially 
reduce the revenues or profits of for-hire vessels. In practice, 
commercial vessels are not expected to experience any profit changes in 
the near-term based on historical landings for the sector from 2009 
through 2013. Relative to the proposed new sector allocations, based on 
applying the proposed allocation ratios to the current total ACL, 
commercial landings of dolphin (based on 2009-2013 commercial landings) 
would range from 33 percent to 80 percent of the sector's ACL. In the 
years 2009 through 2013, the highest landings occurred in 2009 and the 
lowest in 2013. However, commercial fishing for dolphin closed on June 
30, 2015, when

[[Page 58452]]

the commercial sector reached its ACL. If future commercial landings of 
dolphin were equal to or greater than they were in 2015, the proposed 
allocation ratio would be expected to increase the revenues, and 
possibly profits, of commercial vessels. As noted earlier, for-hire 
vessels would only be affected indirectly by the proposed rule.
    The following discussion describes the alternatives that were not 
selected as preferred by the Council.
    Four alternatives, including the preferred alternative (as 
described in the preamble), were considered for reducing the following 
year's commercial ACL by the amount of the commercial overage. The 
first alternative, the no-action alternative, would not impose a 
payback provision for gag, golden tilefish, red snapper, snowy grouper, 
wreckfish, and golden crab while retaining the payback provision for 
the other species addressed in this action. This alternative would not 
address the need to create a consistent regulatory environment while 
preventing unnecessary negative socio-economic impacts, and ensure 
overfishing does not occur in accordance with the provisions set forth 
in the Magnuson-Stevens Act. The second alternative would require a 
payback for overages only if the species is overfished, and the third 
alternative would require a payback only if the combined total of 
commercial and recreational ACLs is exceeded. These two alternatives 
are more restrictive than the preferred alternative and, therefore, 
would be expected to have potentially larger adverse short-term 
economic effects on commercial entities than the preferred alternative.
    Because the commercial and recreational sector re-allocation of the 
ACL for dolphin would not be expected to result in any negative effects 
on any directly affected entities, the issue of significant 
alternatives to reduce any significant negative effects is not 
relevant.

List of Subjects in 50 CFR Part 622

    Accountability measure, Annual catch limit, Dolphin, Fisheries, 
Fishing, Golden crab, Snapper-grouper, South Atlantic.

    Dated: September 17, 2015.
Eileen Sobeck,
Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries 
Service.

    For the reasons set out in the preamble, 50 CFR part 622 is 
proposed to be amended as follows:

PART 622--FISHERIES OF THE CARIBBEAN, GULF OF MEXICO, AND SOUTH 
ATLANTIC

0
1. The authority citation for part 622 continues to read as follows:

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

0
2. In Sec.  622.190, revise paragraph (a)(6) to read as follows:


Sec.  622.190  Quotas.

* * * * *
    (a) * * *
    (6) Red porgy--157,692 lb (71,528 kg), gutted weight; 164,000 lb 
(74,389 kg), round weight.
* * * * *
0
3. In Sec.  622.193, revise paragraphs (a) through (d), (g), (i), (j) 
through (r), and (t) through (x) to read as follows:


Sec.  622.193  Annual catch limits (ACLs), annual catch targets (ACTs), 
and accountability measures (AMs).

    (a) Golden tilefish--(1) Commercial sector--(i) Hook-and-line 
component. If commercial landings for golden tilefish, as estimated by 
the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL (commercial 
quota) specified in Sec.  622.190(a)(2)(ii), the AA will file a 
notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the hook-
and-line component of the commercial sector for the remainder of the 
fishing year. Applicable restrictions after a commercial quota closure 
are specified in Sec.  622.190(c).
    (ii) Longline component. If commercial landings for golden 
tilefish, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the 
commercial ACL (commercial quota) specified in Sec.  
622.190(a)(2)(iii), the AA will file a notification with the Office of 
the Federal Register to close the longline component of the commercial 
sector for the remainder of the fishing year. After the commercial ACL 
for the longline component is reached or projected to be reached, 
golden tilefish may not be fished for or possessed by a vessel with a 
golden tilefish longline endorsement. Applicable restrictions after a 
commercial quota closure are specified in Sec.  622.190(c).
    (iii) If commercial landings for golden tilefish, as estimated by 
the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL (including both the hook-and-line 
and longline component ACLs) specified in Sec.  622.190(a)(2)(i), and 
the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 558,036 lb (253,121 
kg), gutted weight, 625,000 lb (283,495 kg), round weight, is exceeded 
during the same fishing year, and golden tilefish are overfished based 
on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA 
will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to 
reduce the commercial ACL for that following fishing year by the amount 
of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year.
    (2) Recreational sector--(i) If recreational landings for golden 
tilefish, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the 
recreational ACL of 3,019 fish, the AA will file a notification with 
the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for 
the remainder of the fishing year regardless if the stock is 
overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based 
on the best scientific information available. On and after the 
effective date of such a notification, the bag and possession limits 
for golden tilefish in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (ii) If recreational landings for golden tilefish, as estimated by 
the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing 
year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in 
increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification 
with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the 
recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of 
the recreational ACL overage, if the species is overfished based on the 
most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the 
combined commercial and recreational ACL of 558,036 lb (253,121 kg), 
gutted weight, 625,000 lb (285,495 kg), round weight, is exceeded 
during the same fishing year. The AA will use the best scientific 
information available to determine if reducing the length of the 
recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the 
recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length 
of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession 
limits for golden tilefish in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (b) Snowy grouper--(1) Commercial sector--(i) If commercial 
landings for snowy grouper, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are 
projected to reach the commercial ACL (commercial quota) specified in 
Sec.  622.190(a)(1), the AA will file a notification with the Office of 
the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for the remainder 
of the fishing year. Applicable restrictions after a commercial quota 
closure are specified in Sec.  622.190(c).
    (ii) If commercial landings for snowy grouper, as estimated by the 
SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and 
recreational ACL specified in Sec.  622.193(b)(1)(iii) is exceeded, and 
snowy grouper are overfished based on the most recent

[[Page 58453]]

Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a 
notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the 
commercial ACL for that following fishing year by the amount of the 
commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year.
    (iii) The combined commercial and recreational ACL for snowy 
grouper is 139,098 lb (63,094 kg), gutted weight, 164,136 lb (74,451 
kg), round weight, for 2015; 151,518 lb (68,727 kg), gutted weight, 
178,791 lb (81,098 kg), round weight, for 2016; 163,109 lb (73,985 kg), 
gutted weight, 192,469 lb (87,302 kg), round weight, for 2017; 173,873 
lb (78,867 kg), gutted weight, 205,170 lb (93,064 kg), round weight, 
for 2018; 185,464 lb (84,125 kg), gutted weight, 218,848 lb (99,268 
kg), round weight, for 2019 and subsequent years.
    (2) Recreational sector--(i) If recreational landings for snowy 
grouper, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the 
recreational ACL, the AA will file a notification with the Office of 
the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder 
of the fishing year regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS 
determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific 
information available. On and after the effective date of such 
notification, the bag and possession limits for snowy grouper in or 
from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. The recreational ACL for snowy 
grouper is 4,152 fish for 2015; 4,483 fish for 2016; 4,819 fish for 
2017, 4,983 fish for 2018; 5,315 fish for 2019 and subsequent fishing 
years.
    (ii) If recreational landings for snowy grouper, as estimated by 
the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing 
year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in 
increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification 
with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the 
recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of 
the recreational ACL overage, if snowy grouper are overfished based on 
the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the 
combined commercial and recreational ACL specified in Sec.  
622.193(b)(1)(iii) is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will 
use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing 
the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is 
necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS 
reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag 
and possession limits for snowy grouper in or from the South Atlantic 
EEZ are zero.
    (c) Gag--(1) Commercial sector--(i) If commercial landings for gag, 
as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial 
quota specified in Sec.  622.190(a)(7), the AA will file a notification 
with the Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector 
for gag for the remainder of the fishing year. Applicable restrictions 
after a commercial quota closure are specified in Sec.  622.190(c).
    (ii) If the commercial landings for gag, as estimated by the SRD, 
exceed the commercial ACL specified in Sec.  622.193(c)(1)(iii), and 
the combined commercial and recreational ACL specified in Sec.  
622.193(c)(1)(iv), is exceeded during the same fishing year, and gag 
are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report 
to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the 
Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following 
fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior 
fishing year.
    (iii) The commercial ACL for gag is 322,677 lb (146,364 kg), gutted 
weight, 380,759 lb (172,709 kg), round weight, for 2015; 325,100 lb 
(147,463 kg), gutted weight, 383,618 lb (174,006 kg), round weight, for 
2016; 345,449 lb (197,516 kg), gutted weight, 407,630 lb (184,898 kg), 
round weight, for 2017; 362,406 lb (164,385 kg), gutted weight, 427,639 
lb (193,974 kg), round weight, for 2018; and 374,519 lb (169,879 kg), 
gutted weight, 441,932 lb (200,457 kg), round weight, for 2019 and 
subsequent fishing years.
    (iv) The combined commercial and recreational ACL for gag is 
632,700 lb (286,988 kg), gutted weight, 746,586 lb (338,646 kg), round 
weight, for 2015; 637,451 lb (289,143 kg), gutted weight, 752,192 lb 
(341,189 kg), round weight, for 2016; 677,351 lb (307,241 kg), gutted 
weight, 799,274 lb (362,545 kg), round weight, for 2017; 710,600 lb 
(322,323 kg), gutted weight, 838,508 lb (380,341 kg), round weight, for 
2018; and 734,351 lb (333,096 kg), gutted weight, 866,534 lb (393,053 
kg), round weight, for 2019 and subsequent fishing years.
    (2) Recreational sector--(i) If recreational landings for gag, as 
estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational 
ACL, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal 
Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the 
fishing year regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS 
determines that no closure is necessary based on the best scientific 
information available. On and after the effective date of such 
notification, the bag and possession limits for gag in or from the 
South Atlantic EEZ are zero. The recreational ACL for gag is 310,023 lb 
(148,025 kg), gutted weight, 365,827 (165,936 kg), round weight, for 
2015; 312,351 lb (149,137 kg), gutted weight, 368,574 lb (175,981 kg), 
round weight, for 2016; 331,902 lb (158,472 kg), gutted weight, 391,644 
lb (186,997 kg), round weight, for 2017; 348,194 lb (166,251 kg), 
gutted weight, 410,869 lb (196,176 kg), round weight, for 2018; and 
359,832 lb (171,807 kg), gutted weight, 424,602 lb (202,733 kg), round 
weight, for 2019 and subsequent fishing years.
    (ii) If recreational landings for gag, as estimated by the SRD, 
exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year 
recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased 
landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the 
Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational 
fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the 
recreational ACL overage, if the species is overfished based on the 
most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the 
combined commercial and recreational ACL specified in Sec.  
622.193(c)(1)(iv) is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will 
use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing 
the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is 
necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS 
reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag 
and possession limits for gag in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are 
zero.
    (d) Red grouper--(1) Commercial sector--(i) If commercial landings 
for red grouper, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to 
reach the commercial ACL of 343,200 lb (155,673 kg), round weight, the 
AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to 
close the commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. On 
and after the effective date of such a notification, all sale or 
purchase of red grouper is prohibited and harvest or possession of red 
grouper in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and 
possession limits. These bag and possession limits apply in the South 
Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or 
charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has 
been issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., 
in state or Federal waters.
    (ii) If the commercial landings for red grouper, as estimated by 
the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and 
recreational ACL of 780,000 lb (353,802 kg), round

[[Page 58454]]

weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year, and the species is 
overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to 
Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the 
Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL in the following fishing 
year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing 
year.
    (2) Recreational sector--(i) If recreational landings for red 
grouper, as estimated by the SRD, are projected to reach the 
recreational ACL of 436,800 lb (198,129 kg), round weight, the AA will 
file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close 
the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year 
regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no 
closure is necessary based on the best scientific information 
available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the 
bag and possession limits for red grouper in or from the South Atlantic 
EEZ are zero.
    (ii) If recreational landings for red grouper, as estimated by the 
SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing 
year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in 
increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification 
with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the 
recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of 
the recreational ACL overage, if the species is overfished based on the 
most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the 
combined commercial and recreational ACL of 780,000 lb (353,802 kg), 
round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. The AA will use 
the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the 
length of the recreational season and recreational ACL is necessary. 
When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the 
length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and 
possession limits for red grouper in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are 
zero.
* * * * *
    (g) Black grouper--(1) Commercial sector--(i) If commercial 
landings for black grouper, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are 
projected to reach the commercial ACL of 96,844 lb (43,928 kg), round 
weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal 
Register to close the commercial sector for the remainder of the 
fishing year. On and after the effective date of such a notification, 
all sale or purchase of black grouper is prohibited and harvest or 
possession of black grouper in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is 
limited to the bag and possession limits. These bag and possession 
limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid 
Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic 
snapper-grouper has been issued, without regard to where such species 
were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters.
    (ii) If commercial landings for black grouper, as estimated by the 
SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and 
recreational ACL of 262,594 lb (119,111 kg), round weight, is exceeded 
during the same fishing year, and the species is overfished based on 
the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA 
will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to 
reduce the commercial ACL for that following fishing year by the amount 
of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year.
    (2) Recreational sector--(i) If recreational landings for black 
grouper, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the 
recreational ACL of 165,750 lb (75,183 kg), round weight, and the AA 
determines that a closure is necessary by using the best scientific 
information available, the AA will file a notification with the Office 
of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the 
remainder of the fishing year regardless if the stock is overfished, 
unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best 
scientific information available. On and after the effective date of 
such a notification, the bag and possession limits for black grouper in 
or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (ii) If recreational landings for black grouper, as estimated by 
the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing 
year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in 
increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification 
with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the 
recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of 
the recreational ACL overage, if black grouper are overfished based on 
the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the 
combined commercial and recreational ACL of 262,594 lb (119,111 kg), 
round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use 
the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the 
length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is 
necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS 
reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag 
and possession limits for black grouper in or from the South Atlantic 
EEZ are zero.
* * * * *
    (i) Scamp--(1) Commercial sector--(i) If commercial landings for 
scamp, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the 
commercial ACL of 219,375 lb (99,507 kg), round weight, the AA will 
file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close 
the commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. On and 
after the effective date of such a notification, all sale or purchase 
of scamp is prohibited and harvest or possession of scamp in or from 
the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession limits. 
These bag and possession limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a 
vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat 
permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued, without 
regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal 
waters.
    (ii) If commercial landings for scamp, as estimated by the SRD, 
exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational 
ACL of 335,744 lb (152,291 kg), round weight, is exceeded, and scamp 
are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report 
to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the 
Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following 
fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior 
fishing year.
    (2) Recreational sector--(i) If recreational landings for scamp, as 
estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the recreational 
ACL of 116,369 lb (52,784 kg), round weight, the AA will file a 
notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the 
recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year regardless if 
the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no closure is 
necessary based on the best scientific information available. On and 
after the effective date of such a notification, the bag and possession 
limits for scamp in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (ii) If recreational landings for scamp, as estimated by the SRD, 
exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year 
recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased 
landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the 
Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational 
fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the 
recreational ACL overage, if scamp are overfished based

[[Page 58455]]

on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if 
the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 335,744 lb (152,291 
kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will 
use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing 
the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is 
necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS 
reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag 
and possession limits for scamp in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are 
zero.
    (j) Other SASWG combined (including red hind, rock hind, 
yellowmouth grouper, yellowfin grouper, coney, and graysby)--(1) 
Commercial sector--(i) If commercial landings for other SASWG combined, 
as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial 
ACL of 55,542 lb (25,193 kg), round weight, the AA will file a 
notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the 
commercial sector for this complex for the remainder of the fishing 
year. On and after the effective date of such a notification, all sale 
or purchase of red hind, rock hind, yellowmouth grouper, yellowfin 
grouper, coney, and graysby is prohibited, and harvest or possession of 
any of these species in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to 
the bag and possession limits. These bag and possession limits apply in 
the South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal 
commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic 
snapper-grouper has been issued, without regard to where such species 
were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters.
    (ii) If commercial landings for other SASWG combined, as estimated 
by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and 
recreational ACL of 104,190 lb (47,260 kg), round weight, is exceeded, 
and at least one of the species in other SASWG combined is overfished 
based on the most recent status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, 
the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register 
to reduce the commercial ACL for that following fishing year by the 
amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year.
    (2) Recreational sector--(i) If recreational landings for other 
SASWG combined, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to 
reach the recreational ACL of 48,648 lb (22,066 kg), round weight, the 
AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to 
close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year 
regardless if any stock in other SASWG combined is overfished, unless 
NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best 
scientific information available. On and after the effective date of 
such a notification, the bag and possession limits for any species in 
the other SASWG combined in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (ii) If recreational landings for other SASWG combined, as 
estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the 
following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a 
persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a 
notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the 
length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by 
the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if at least one of the 
species in other SASWG combined is overfished based on the most recent 
Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined 
commercial and recreational ACL of 104,190 lb (47,260 kg) is exceeded 
during the same fishing year. NMFS will use the best scientific 
information available to determine if reducing the length of the 
recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the 
recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length 
of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession 
limits for any species in the other SASWG combined in or from the South 
Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (k) Greater amberjack--(1) Commercial sector--(i) If commercial 
landings for greater amberjack, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are 
projected to reach the commercial ACL (commercial quota) specified in 
Sec.  622.190(a)(3), the AA will file a notification with the Office of 
the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for the remainder 
of the fishing year. Applicable restrictions after a commercial quota 
closure are specified in Sec.  622.190(c).
    (ii) If commercial landings for greater amberjack, as estimated by 
the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and 
recreational ACL of 1,968,001 lb (892,670 kg), round weight, is 
exceeded during the same fishing year, and the species is overfished 
based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, 
the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register 
to reduce the commercial ACL in the following fishing year by the 
amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year.
    (2) Recreational sector--(i) If recreational landings for greater 
amberjack, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the 
recreational ACL of 1,167,837 lb (529,722 kg), round weight, the AA 
will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to 
close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year 
regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no 
closure is necessary based on the best scientific information 
available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the 
bag and possession limits for greater amberjack in or from the South 
Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (ii) If recreational landings for greater amberjack, as estimated 
by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following 
fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence 
in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a 
notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the 
length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL by the 
amount of the recreational ACL overage, if the species is overfished 
based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, 
and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 1,968,001 lb 
(892,670 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. 
The AA will use the best scientific information available to determine 
if reducing the length of the recreational season and recreational ACL 
is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of 
NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, 
the bag and possession limits for greater amberjack in or from the 
South Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (l) Other jacks complex (including lesser amberjack, almaco jack, 
and banded rudderfish, combined)--(1) Commercial sector--(i) If 
commercial landings for the other jacks complex, as estimated by the 
SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL of 189,422 lb 
(85,920 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the 
Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for the 
other jacks complex for the remainder of the fishing year. On and after 
the effective date of such a notification, all sale or purchase of 
lesser amberjack, almaco jack, and banded rudderfish is prohibited, and 
harvest or possession of any of these species in or from the South 
Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession limits. These bag and 
possession limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for 
which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for 
South Atlantic snapper-

[[Page 58456]]

grouper has been issued, without regard to where such species were 
harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters.
    (ii) If commercial landings for the other jacks complex, as 
estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined 
commercial and recreational ACL of 457,221 lb (207,392 kg), round 
weight, is exceeded, and at least one of the species in the other jacks 
complex is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries 
Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of 
the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following 
fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior 
fishing year.
    (2) Recreational sector--(i) If recreational landings for the other 
jacks complex, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach 
the recreational ACL of 267,799 lb (121,472 kg), round weight, the AA 
will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to 
close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year 
regardless if any stock in the other jacks complex is overfished, 
unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best 
scientific information available. On and after the effective date of 
such a notification, the bag and possession limits for any species in 
the other jacks complex in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (ii) If recreational landings for the other jacks complex, as 
estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the 
following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a 
persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a 
notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the 
length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by 
the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if at least one of the 
species in the other jacks complex is overfished based on the most 
recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined 
commercial and recreational ACL of 457,221 lb (207,392 kg), round 
weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use the 
best scientific information available to determine if reducing the 
length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is 
necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS 
reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag 
and possession limits for any species in the other jacks complex in or 
from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (m) Bar jack--(1) Commercial sector--(i) If commercial landings for 
bar jack, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the 
commercial ACL of 13,228 lb (6,000 kg), round weight, the AA will file 
a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the 
commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. On and after 
the effective date of such a notification, all sale or purchase of bar 
jack is prohibited and harvest or possession of bar jack in or from the 
South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession limits. These 
bag and possession limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel 
for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit 
for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued, without regard to 
where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters.
    (ii) If commercial landings for bar jack, as estimated by the SRD, 
exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational 
ACL of 62,249 lb (28,236 kg), round weight, is exceeded, and bar jack 
are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report 
to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the 
Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following 
fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior 
fishing year.
    (2) Recreational sector--(i) If recreational landings for bar jack, 
as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the 
recreational ACL of 49,021 lb (22,236 kg), round weight, the AA will 
file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close 
the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year 
regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no 
closure is necessary based on the best scientific information 
available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the 
bag and possession limits for bar jack in or from the South Atlantic 
EEZ are zero.
    (ii) If recreational landings for bar jack, as estimated by the 
SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing 
year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in 
increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification 
with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the 
recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of 
the recreational ACL overage, if bar jack are overfished based on the 
most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the 
combined commercial and recreational ACL of 62,249 lb (28,236 kg), 
round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use 
the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the 
length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is 
necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS 
reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag 
and possession limits for bar jack in or from the South Atlantic EEZ 
are zero.
    (n) Yellowtail snapper--(1) Commercial sector--(i) If commercial 
landings for yellowtail snapper, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are 
projected to reach the commercial ACL of 1,596,510 lb (724,165 kg), 
round weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the 
Federal Register to close the commercial sector for the remainder of 
the fishing year. On and after the effective date of such a 
notification, all sale or purchase of yellowtail snapper is prohibited 
and harvest or possession of yellowtail snapper in or from the South 
Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession limits. These bag and 
possession limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for 
which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for 
South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued, without regard to where 
such species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters.
    (ii) If commercial landings for yellowtail snapper, as estimated by 
the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and 
recreational ACL of 3,037,500 lb (1,377,787 kg), round weight, is 
exceeded during the same fishing year, and yellowtail snapper are 
overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to 
Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the 
Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following 
fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior 
fishing year.
    (2) Recreational sector--(i) If recreational landings for 
yellowtail snapper, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to 
reach the recreational ACL of 1,440,990 lb (653,622 kg), round weight, 
the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register 
to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year 
regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no 
closure is necessary based on the best scientific information 
available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the 
bag and possession limits for yellowtail snapper in or from the South 
Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (ii) If recreational landings for yellowtail snapper, as estimated 
by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following 
fishing year

[[Page 58457]]

recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased 
landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the 
Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational 
fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the 
recreational ACL overage, if the species is overfished based on the 
most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the 
combined commercial and recreational ACL of 3,037,500 lb (1,377,787 
kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. The AA 
will use the best scientific information available to determine if 
reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational 
ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of 
NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, 
the bag and possession limits for yellowtail snapper in or from the 
South Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (o) Mutton snapper--(1) Commercial sector--(i) If commercial 
landings for mutton snapper, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are 
projected to reach the commercial ACL of 157,743 lb (71,551 kg), round 
weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal 
Register to close the commercial sector for the remainder of the 
fishing year. On and after the effective date of such a notification, 
all sale or purchase of mutton snapper is prohibited and harvest or 
possession of mutton snapper in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is 
limited to the bag and possession limits. These bag and possession 
limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid 
Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic 
snapper-grouper has been issued, without regard to where such species 
were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters.
    (ii) If commercial landings for mutton snapper, as estimated by the 
SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and 
recreational ACL of 926,600 lb (420,299 kg), round weight, is exceeded 
during the same fishing year, and the species is overfished based on 
the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA 
will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to 
reduce the commercial ACL in the following fishing year by the amount 
of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing year.
    (2) Recreational sector--(i) If recreational landings for mutton 
snapper, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the 
recreational ACL of 768,857 lb (348,748 kg), round weight, the AA will 
file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close 
the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year 
regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no 
closure is necessary based on the best scientific information 
available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the 
bag and possession limits for mutton snapper in or from the South 
Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (ii) If recreational landings for mutton snapper, as estimated by 
the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing 
year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in 
increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification 
with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the 
recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of 
the recreational ACL overage, if the species is overfished based on the 
most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the 
combined commercial and recreational ACL of 926,600 lb (420,299 kg), 
round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use 
the best scientific information available to determine if reducing the 
length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is 
necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS 
reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag 
and possession limits for mutton snapper in or from the South Atlantic 
EEZ are zero.
    (p) Other snappers complex (including cubera snapper, gray snapper, 
lane snapper, dog snapper, and mahogany snapper)--(1) Commercial 
sector--(i) If commercial landings for the other snappers complex, as 
estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the complex 
commercial ACL of 344,884 lb (156,437 kg), round weight, the AA will 
file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close 
the commercial sector for this complex for the remainder of the fishing 
year. On and after the effective date of such a notification, all sale 
or purchase of cubera snapper, gray snapper, lane snapper, dog snapper, 
and mahogany snapper is prohibited, and harvest or possession of any of 
these species in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag 
and possession limits. These bag and possession limits apply in the 
South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial 
or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper 
has been issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, 
i.e., in state or Federal waters.
    (ii) If commercial landings for the other snappers complex, as 
estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined 
commercial and recreational ACL of 1,517,716 lb (688,424 kg), round 
weight, is exceeded, and at least one of the species in the other 
snappers complex is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. 
Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the 
Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that 
following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in 
the prior fishing year.
    (2) Recreational sector--(i) If recreational landings for the other 
snappers complex, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to 
reach the recreational ACL of 1,172,832 lb (531,988 kg), round weight, 
the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register 
to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year 
regardless if any stock in the other snappers complex is overfished, 
unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best 
scientific information available. On and after the effective date of 
such a notification, the bag and possession limits for any species in 
the other snappers complex in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (ii) If recreational landings for the other snappers complex, as 
estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the 
following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a 
persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a 
notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the 
length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by 
the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if at least one of the 
species in the other snappers complex is overfished based on the most 
recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and the combined 
commercial and recreational ACL of 1,517,716 lb (688,424 kg), round 
weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use the 
best scientific information available to determine if reducing the 
length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is 
necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS 
reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag 
and possession limits for any species in the other snappers complex in 
or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (q) Gray triggerfish--(1) Commercial sector--(i) If commercial 
landings for gray triggerfish, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are 
projected to reach the

[[Page 58458]]

commercial ACL (commercial quota) specified in Sec.  622.190(a)(8)(i) 
or (ii), the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal 
Register to close the commercial sector for the remainder of the 
fishing year. Applicable restrictions after a commercial quota closure 
are specified in Sec.  622.190(c).
    (ii) If commercial landings for gray triggerfish, as estimated by 
the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and 
recreational ACL of 716,999 lb (325,225 kg), round weight, is exceeded, 
and gray triggerfish are overfished based on the most recent Status of 
U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with 
the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for 
that following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage 
in the prior fishing year.
    (2) Recreational sector--(i) If recreational landings for gray 
triggerfish, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach 
the recreational ACL of 404,675 lb (183,557 kg), round weight, the AA 
will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to 
close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year 
regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no 
closure is necessary based on the best scientific information 
available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the 
bag and possession limits for gray triggerfish in or from the South 
Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (ii) If recreational landings for gray triggerfish, as estimated by 
the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing 
year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in 
increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification 
with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the 
recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of 
the recreational ACL overage, if gray triggerfish are overfished based 
on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if 
the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 716,999 lb (325,225 
kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will 
use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing 
the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is 
necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS 
reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag 
and possession limits for gray triggerfish in or from the South 
Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (r) Wreckfish--(1) Commercial sector--(i) The ITQ program for 
wreckfish in the South Atlantic serves as the accountability measures 
for commercial wreckfish. The commercial ACL for wreckfish is equal to 
the commercial quota specified in Sec.  622.190(b). Applicable 
restrictions after a commercial quota closure are specified in Sec.  
622.190(c).
    (ii) The combined commercial and recreational ACL for wreckfish is 
433,000 lb (196,405 kg), round weight, for 2015; 423,700 lb (192,187 
kg), round weight, for 2016; 414,200 lb (187,878 kg), round weight, for 
2017; 406,300 lb (184,295 kg), round weight, for 2018; 396,800 lb 
(179,985 kg), round weight, for 2019; and 389,100 lb (176,493 kg), 
round weight, for 2020 and subsequent fishing years.
    (2) Recreational sector--(i) If recreational landings for 
wreckfish, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the 
recreational ACL specified in Sec.  622.193(r)(2)(iii), the AA will 
file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close 
the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year 
regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no 
closure is necessary based on the best scientific information 
available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the 
bag and possession limits for wreckfish in or from the South Atlantic 
EEZ are zero.
    (ii) If recreational landings for wreckfish, as estimated by the 
SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing 
year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in 
increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification 
with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the 
recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of 
the recreational ACL overage, if the species is overfished based on the 
most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the 
combined commercial and recreational ACL specified in Sec.  
622.193(r)(1)(ii) is exceeded during the same fishing year. The AA will 
use the best scientific information available to determine if reducing 
the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is 
necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS 
reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag 
and possession limits for wreckfish in or from the South Atlantic EEZ 
are zero.
    (iii) The recreational ACL for wreckfish is 21,650 lb (9,820 kg), 
round weight, for 2015; 21,185 lb (9,609 kg), round weight, for 2016; 
20,710 lb (9,394 kg), round weight, for 2017; 20,315 lb (9,215 kg), 
round weight, for 2018; 19,840 lb (8,999 kg), round weight, for 2019; 
and 19,455 lb (8,825 kg), round weight, for 2020 and subsequent fishing 
years.
* * * * *
    (t) Atlantic spadefish--(1) Commercial sector--(i) If commercial 
landings for Atlantic spadefish, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are 
projected to reach the commercial ACL of 150,552 lb (68,289 kg), round 
weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal 
Register to close the commercial sector for the remainder of the 
fishing year. On and after the effective date of such a notification, 
all sale or purchase of Atlantic spadefish is prohibited and harvest or 
possession of Atlantic spadefish in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is 
limited to the bag and possession limits. These bag and possession 
limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid 
Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic 
snapper-grouper has been issued, without regard to where such species 
were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters.
    (ii) If commercial landings for Atlantic spadefish, as estimated by 
the SRD, exceed the ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational 
ACL of 812,478 lb (368,534 kg), round weight, is exceeded, and Atlantic 
spadefish are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. 
Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the 
Office of the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that 
following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in 
the prior fishing year.
    (2) Recreational sector--(i) If recreational landings for Atlantic 
spadefish, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the 
recreational ACL of 661,926 lb (300,245 kg), round weight, the AA will 
file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close 
the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year 
regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no 
closure is necessary based on the best scientific information 
available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the 
bag and possession limits for Atlantic spadefish in or from the South 
Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (ii) If recreational landings for Atlantic spadefish, as estimated 
by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following 
fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence 
in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a 
notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the 
length of

[[Page 58459]]

the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount 
of the recreational ACL overage, if Atlantic spadefish are overfished 
based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, 
and if the combined commercial and recreational ACL of 812,478 lb 
(368,534 kg), round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. 
NMFS will use the best scientific information available to determine if 
reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and recreational 
ACL is necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of 
NMFS reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, 
the bag and possession limits for Atlantic spadefish in or from the 
South Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (u) Hogfish--(1) Commercial sector--(i) If commercial landings for 
hogfish, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the 
commercial ACL of 49,469 lb (22,439 kg), round weight, the AA will file 
a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the 
commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. On and after 
the effective date of such a notification, all sale or purchase of 
hogfish is prohibited and harvest or possession of hogfish in or from 
the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession limits. 
These bag and possession limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a 
vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat 
permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued, without 
regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal 
waters.
    (ii) If commercial landings for hogfish, as estimated by the SRD, 
exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational 
ACL of 134,824 lb (61,155 kg), round weight, is exceeded, and hogfish 
are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report 
to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the 
Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following 
fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior 
fishing year.
    (2) Recreational sector--(i) If recreational landings for hogfish, 
as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the 
recreational ACL of 85,355 lb (38,716 kg), round weight, the AA will 
file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close 
the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year 
regardless if the stock is overfished, unless NMFS determines that no 
closure is necessary based on the best scientific information 
available. On and after the effective date of such a notification, the 
bag and possession limits for hogfish in or from the South Atlantic EEZ 
are zero.
    (ii) If recreational landings for hogfish, as estimated by the SRD, 
exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing year 
recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased 
landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification with the 
Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the recreational 
fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of the 
recreational ACL overage, if hogfish are overfished based on the most 
recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined 
commercial and recreational ACL of 134,824 lb (61,155 kg), round 
weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use the 
best scientific information available to determine if reducing the 
length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is 
necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS 
reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag 
and possession limits for hogfish in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are 
zero.
    (v) Red porgy--(1) Commercial sector--(i) If commercial landings 
for red porgy, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach 
the commercial ACL (commercial quota) specified in Sec.  622.190(a)(6), 
the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register 
to close the commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. 
Applicable restrictions after a commercial quota closure are specified 
in Sec.  622.190(c).
    (ii) If commercial landings for red porgy, as estimated by the SRD, 
exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and recreational 
ACL of 315,384 lb (143,056 kg), gutted weight, 328,000 lb (148,778 kg), 
round weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year, and red porgy 
are overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report 
to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the 
Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL in the following fishing 
year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior fishing 
year.
    (2) Recreational sector--(i) If recreational landings for red 
porgy, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the 
recreational ACL of 157,692 lb (71,528 kg), gutted weight, 164,000 lb 
(74,389 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the 
Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the 
remainder of the fishing year regardless if the stock is overfished, 
unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best 
scientific information available. On and after the effective date of 
such a notification, the bag and possession limits for red porgy in or 
from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (ii) If recreational landings for red porgy, as estimated by the 
SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing 
year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence in 
increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a notification 
with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the length of the 
recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by the amount of 
the recreational ACL overage, if the species is overfished based on the 
most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the 
combined commercial and recreational ACL of 315,384 lb (143,056 kg), 
gutted weight, 328,000 lb (148,778 kg), round weight, is exceeded 
during the same fishing year. The AA will use the best scientific 
information available to determine if reducing the length of the 
recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the 
recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length 
of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession 
limits for red porgy in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (w) Other porgies complex (including jolthead porgy, knobbed porgy, 
whitebone porgy, scup, and saucereye porgy)--(1) Commercial sector--(i) 
If commercial landings for the other porgies complex, as estimated by 
the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL of 36,348 
lb (16,487 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification with the 
Office of the Federal Register to close the commercial sector for the 
other porgies complex for the remainder of the fishing year. On and 
after the effective date of such a notification, all sale or purchase 
of jolthead porgy, knobbed porgy, whitebone porgy, scup, and saucereye 
porgy is prohibited, and harvest or possession of any of these species 
in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession 
limits. These bag and possession limits apply in the South Atlantic on 
board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/
headboat permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued, 
without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or 
Federal waters.
    (ii) If commercial landings for the other porgies complex, as 
estimated by the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined 
commercial and recreational ACL of 143,262 lb (64,983

[[Page 58460]]

kg), round weight, is exceeded, and at least one of the species in the 
complex is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. Fisheries 
Report to Congress, the AA will file a notification with the Office of 
the Federal Register to reduce the commercial ACL for that following 
fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL overage in the prior 
fishing year.
    (2) Recreational sector--(i) If recreational landings for the other 
porgies complex, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to 
reach the recreational ACL of 106,914 lb (48,495 kg), round weight, the 
AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to 
close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year 
regardless if any stock in the other porgies complex is overfished, 
unless NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best 
scientific information available. On and after the effective date of 
such a notification, the bag and possession limits for any species in 
the other porgies complex in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (ii) If recreational landings for the other porgies complex, as 
estimated by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the 
following fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a 
persistence in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a 
notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the 
length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by 
the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if one of the species in 
the complex is overfished based on the most recent Status of U.S. 
Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined commercial and 
recreational ACL of 143,262 lb (64,983 kg), round weight, is exceeded 
during the same fishing year. NMFS will use the best scientific 
information available to determine if reducing the length of the 
recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is necessary. When the 
recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS reducing the length 
of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag and possession 
limits for any species in the other porgies complex in or from the 
South Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (x) Grunts complex (including white grunt, sailor's choice, 
tomtate, and margate)--(1) Commercial sector--(i) If commercial 
landings for the grunts complex, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are 
projected to reach the commercial ACL of 217,903 lb (98,839 kg), round 
weight, the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal 
Register to close the commercial sector for this complex for the 
remainder of the fishing year. On and after the effective date of such 
a notification, all sale or purchase of white grunt, sailor's choice, 
tomtate, and margate is prohibited, and harvest or possession of these 
species in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and 
possession limits. These bag and possession limits apply in the South 
Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or 
charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has 
been issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., 
in state or Federal waters.
    (ii) If commercial landings for the grunts complex, as estimated by 
the SRD, exceed the commercial ACL, and the combined commercial and 
recreational ACL of 836,025 lb (379,215 kg), round weight, and at least 
one of the species in the complex is overfished based on the most 
recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a 
notification with the Office of the Federal Register, at or near the 
beginning of the following fishing year to reduce the commercial ACL 
for that following fishing year by the amount of the commercial ACL 
overage in the prior fishing year.
    (2) Recreational sector--(i) If recreational landings for the 
grunts complex, as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to 
reach the recreational ACL of 618,122 lb (280,375 kg), round weight, 
the AA will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register 
to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year 
regardless if any stock in the grunts complex is overfished, unless 
NMFS determines that no closure is necessary based on the best 
scientific information available. On and after the effective date of 
such a notification, the bag and possession limits for any species in 
the grunts complex in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero.
    (ii) If recreational landings for the grunts complex, as estimated 
by the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following 
fishing year recreational landings will be monitored for a persistence 
in increased landings, and if necessary, the AA will file a 
notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the 
length of the recreational fishing season and the recreational ACL by 
the amount of the recreational ACL overage, if at least one of the 
species in the grunts complex is overfished based on the most recent 
Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, and if the combined 
commercial and recreational ACL of 836,025 lb (379,215 kg), round 
weight, is exceeded during the same fishing year. NMFS will use the 
best scientific information available to determine if reducing the 
length of the recreational fishing season and recreational ACL is 
necessary. When the recreational sector is closed as a result of NMFS 
reducing the length of the recreational fishing season and ACL, the bag 
and possession limits for any species in the grunts complex in or from 
the South Atlantic EEZ are zero.
* * * * *
0
4. In Sec.  622.251, revise paragraph (a) to read as follows:


Sec.  622.251  Annual catch limits (ACLs), annual catch targets (ACTs), 
and accountability measures (AMs).

    (a) Commercial sector--(1) If commercial landings for golden crab, 
as estimated by the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the ACL of 2 
million lb (907,185 kg), round weight, the AA will file a notification 
with the Office of the Federal Register to close the golden crab 
fishery for the remainder of the fishing year. On and after the 
effective date of such a notification, all harvest, possession, sale, 
or purchase of golden crab in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is 
prohibited.
    (2) If commercial landings for golden crab, as estimated by the 
SRD, exceed the ACL, and the species is overfished based on the most 
recent Status of U.S. Fisheries Report to Congress, the AA will file a 
notification with the Office of the Federal Register to reduce the ACL 
in the following fishing year by the amount of the ACL overage in the 
prior fishing year.
* * * * *
0
5. In Sec.  622.280, revise paragraphs (a)(1)(i) and (a)(2)(i) and the 
last two sentences in paragraph (b)(1)(i) to read as follows:


Sec.  622.280  Annual catch limits (ACLs) and accountability measures 
(AMs).

    (a) * * *
    (1) * * *
    (i) If commercial landings for Atlantic dolphin, as estimated by 
the SRD, reach or are projected to reach the commercial ACL of 
1,534,485 lb (696,031 kg), round weight, the AA will file a 
notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the 
commercial sector for the remainder of the fishing year. On and after 
the effective date of such a notification, all sale or purchase of 
Atlantic dolphin is prohibited and harvest or possession of Atlantic 
dolphin in or from the Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and 
possession limits. These bag and possession limits apply in the 
Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or 
charter vessel/headboat permit for Atlantic dolphin and wahoo has been 
issued, without regard to where such

[[Page 58461]]

species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters.
* * * * *
    (2) * * *
    (i) If recreational landings for Atlantic dolphin, as estimated by 
the SRD, exceed the recreational ACL of 13,810,361 lb (6,264,274 kg), 
round weight, then during the following fishing year recreational 
landings will be monitored for a persistence in increased landings.
* * * * *
    (b) * * *
    (1) * * *
    (i) * * * On and after the effective date of such a notification, 
all sale or purchase of Atlantic wahoo is prohibited and harvest or 
possession of Atlantic wahoo in or from the Atlantic EEZ is limited to 
the bag and possession limits. These bag and possession limits apply in 
the Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or 
charter vessel/headboat permit for Atlantic dolphin and wahoo has been 
issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in 
state or Federal waters.
* * * * *
[FR Doc. 2015-24576 Filed 9-28-15; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P