Fisheries of the Economic Exclusive Zone Off Alaska; Deep-Water Species Fishery by Vessels Using Trawl Gear in the Gulf of Alaska, 14988 [2016-06295]

Download as PDF 14988 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 54 / Monday, March 21, 2016 / Rules and Regulations is insufficient time to allow for prior public notice and comment for the transfer of quota for these yellowtail flounder stocks from the scallop fishery to the groundfish fishery. The NE multispecies fishing year ends on April 30, 2016. If NMFS allowed for the time necessary to provide for prior notice and comment, it would be unlikely that the transfer would occur in time to allow groundfish vessels to harvest the additional quota of these stocks before the end of the fishing year. As a result, groundfish fishermen would be prevented from offsetting their current negative economic circumstances due to the severe decreases in ACLs of several important groundfish stocks, thus undermining the intent of the rule. Giving effect to this rule as soon as possible will help relieve fishermen from more restrictive ACLs for the yellowtail stocks and help achieve optimum yield in the fishery. For these same reasons, the NMFS Assistant Administrator also finds good cause pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3) to waive the 30-day delay in effectiveness for this action for these same reasons. Further, there is no need to allow the industry additional time to adjust to this rule because it does not require any compliance or other action on the part of individual scallop or groundfish fishermen. Because notice and opportunity for comment are not required pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553 or any other law, the analytical requirements of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) are inapplicable. Therefore, a regulatory flexibility analysis is not required and one has not been prepared. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Dated: March 15, 2016. Samuel D. Rauch III, Deputy Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Programs, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2016–06306 Filed 3–18–16; 8:45 am] Lhorne on DSK5TPTVN1PROD with RULES BILLING CODE 3510–22–P VerDate Sep<11>2014 15:24 Mar 18, 2016 Jkt 238001 DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 679 [Docket No. 140918791–4999–02] RIN 0648–XE516 Fisheries of the Economic Exclusive Zone Off Alaska; Deep-Water Species Fishery by Vessels Using Trawl Gear in the Gulf of Alaska National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Temporary rule; closure. AGENCY: NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for species that comprise the deep-water species fishery by vessels using trawl gear in the Gulf of Alaska (GOA). This action is necessary because the first seasonal apportionment of the Pacific halibut bycatch allowance specified for the deep-water species fishery in the GOA has been reached. DATES: Effective 1200 hours, Alaska local time (A.l.t.), March 16, 2016, through 1200 hours, A.l.t., April 1, 2016. SUMMARY: FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Josh Keaton, 907–586–7228. NMFS manages the groundfish fishery in the GOA exclusive economic zone according to the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Gulf of Alaska (FMP) prepared by the North Pacific Fishery Management Council under authority of the MagnusonStevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. Regulations governing fishing by U.S. vessels in accordance with the FMP appear at subpart H of 50 CFR part 600 and 50 CFR part 679. The first seasonal apportionment of the Pacific halibut bycatch allowance specified for the deep-water species fishery in the GOA is 85 metric tons as established by the final 2015 and 2016 harvest specifications for groundfish of the GOA (80 FR 10250, February 25, 2015), for the period 1200 hours, A.l.t., January 20, 2016, through 1200 hours, A.l.t., April 1, 2016. In accordance with § 679.21(d)(6)(i), the Administrator, Alaska Region, NMFS, has determined that the first seasonal apportionment of the Pacific halibut bycatch allowance specified for the trawl deep-water species fishery in the GOA has been reached. Consequently, NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for the deep-water SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: PO 00000 Frm 00042 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 9990 species fishery by vessels using trawl gear in the GOA. The species and species groups that comprise the deepwater species fishery include sablefish, rockfish, deep-water flatfish, rex sole, and arrowtooth flounder. After the effective date of this closure the maximum retainable amounts at § 679.20(e) and (f) apply at any time during a trip. Classification This action responds to the best available information recently obtained from the fishery. The Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, NOAA (AA), finds good cause to waive the requirement to provide prior notice and opportunity for public comment pursuant to the authority set forth at 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) as such requirement is impracticable and contrary to the public interest. This requirement is impracticable and contrary to the public interest as it would prevent NMFS from responding to the most recent fisheries data in a timely fashion and would delay the closure of the deep-water species fishery by vessels using trawl gear in the GOA. NMFS was unable to publish a notice providing time for public comment because the most recent, relevant data only became available as of March 14, 2016. The AA also finds good cause to waive the 30-day delay in the effective date of this action under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3). This finding is based upon the reasons provided above for waiver of prior notice and opportunity for public comment. This action is required by § 679.21 and is exempt from review under Executive Order 12866. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Dated: March 16, 2016. Alan D. Risenhoover, Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2016–06295 Filed 3–16–16; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P E:\FR\FM\21MRR1.SGM 21MRR1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 54 (Monday, March 21, 2016)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Page 14988]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-06295]


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

DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 679

[Docket No. 140918791-4999-02]
RIN 0648-XE516


Fisheries of the Economic Exclusive Zone Off Alaska; Deep-Water 
Species Fishery by Vessels Using Trawl Gear in the Gulf of Alaska

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

ACTION: Temporary rule; closure.

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

SUMMARY: NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for species that comprise 
the deep-water species fishery by vessels using trawl gear in the Gulf 
of Alaska (GOA). This action is necessary because the first seasonal 
apportionment of the Pacific halibut bycatch allowance specified for 
the deep-water species fishery in the GOA has been reached.

DATES: Effective 1200 hours, Alaska local time (A.l.t.), March 16, 
2016, through 1200 hours, A.l.t., April 1, 2016.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Josh Keaton, 907-586-7228.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: NMFS manages the groundfish fishery in the 
GOA exclusive economic zone according to the Fishery Management Plan 
for Groundfish of the Gulf of Alaska (FMP) prepared by the North 
Pacific Fishery Management Council under authority of the Magnuson-
Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. Regulations governing 
fishing by U.S. vessels in accordance with the FMP appear at subpart H 
of 50 CFR part 600 and 50 CFR part 679.
    The first seasonal apportionment of the Pacific halibut bycatch 
allowance specified for the deep-water species fishery in the GOA is 85 
metric tons as established by the final 2015 and 2016 harvest 
specifications for groundfish of the GOA (80 FR 10250, February 25, 
2015), for the period 1200 hours, A.l.t., January 20, 2016, through 
1200 hours, A.l.t., April 1, 2016.
    In accordance with Sec.  679.21(d)(6)(i), the Administrator, Alaska 
Region, NMFS, has determined that the first seasonal apportionment of 
the Pacific halibut bycatch allowance specified for the trawl deep-
water species fishery in the GOA has been reached. Consequently, NMFS 
is prohibiting directed fishing for the deep-water species fishery by 
vessels using trawl gear in the GOA. The species and species groups 
that comprise the deep-water species fishery include sablefish, 
rockfish, deep-water flatfish, rex sole, and arrowtooth flounder.
    After the effective date of this closure the maximum retainable 
amounts at Sec.  679.20(e) and (f) apply at any time during a trip.

Classification

    This action responds to the best available information recently 
obtained from the fishery. The Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, 
NOAA (AA), finds good cause to waive the requirement to provide prior 
notice and opportunity for public comment pursuant to the authority set 
forth at 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) as such requirement is impracticable and 
contrary to the public interest. This requirement is impracticable and 
contrary to the public interest as it would prevent NMFS from 
responding to the most recent fisheries data in a timely fashion and 
would delay the closure of the deep-water species fishery by vessels 
using trawl gear in the GOA. NMFS was unable to publish a notice 
providing time for public comment because the most recent, relevant 
data only became available as of March 14, 2016.
    The AA also finds good cause to waive the 30-day delay in the 
effective date of this action under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3). This finding is 
based upon the reasons provided above for waiver of prior notice and 
opportunity for public comment.
    This action is required by Sec.  679.21 and is exempt from review 
under Executive Order 12866.

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

    Dated: March 16, 2016.
Alan D. Risenhoover,
Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries 
Service.
[FR Doc. 2016-06295 Filed 3-16-16; 4:15 pm]
 BILLING CODE 3510-22-P