Fisheries Off West Coast States; Modifications of the West Coast Commercial and Recreational Salmon Fisheries; Inseason Actions #6 Through #21, 87845-87848 [2016-29135]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 234 / Tuesday, December 6, 2016 / Rules and Regulations SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Background National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 660 [Docket No. 151117999–6370–01] RIN 0648–XE680 Fisheries Off West Coast States; Modifications of the West Coast Commercial and Recreational Salmon Fisheries; Inseason Actions #6 Through #21 National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Modification of fishing seasons; request for comments. AGENCY: NMFS announces 16 inseason actions in the ocean salmon fisheries. These inseason actions modified the commercial and recreational salmon fisheries in the area from the U.S./ Canada border to the U.S./Mexico border. DATES: The effective dates for the inseason actions are set out in this document under the heading Inseason Actions. Comments will be accepted through December 21, 2016. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by NOAA–NMFS–2016–0007, by any one of the following methods: • Electronic Submissions: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal eRulemaking Portal. Go to www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D= NOAA-NMFS-2016-0007, click the ‘‘Comment Now!’’ icon, complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments. • Mail: Barry A. Thom, Regional Administrator, West Coast Region, NMFS, 7600 Sand Point Way NE., Seattle, WA 98115–6349 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). FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Peggy Mundy at 206–526–4323. mstockstill on DSK3G9T082PROD with RULES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:27 Dec 05, 2016 Jkt 241001 In the 2016 annual management measures for ocean salmon fisheries (81 FR 26157, May 2, 2016), NMFS announced the commercial and recreational fisheries in the area from the U.S./Canada border to the U.S./ Mexico border, beginning May 1, 2016, and 2017 salmon fisheries opening earlier than May 1, 2017. NMFS is authorized to implement inseason management actions to modify fishing seasons and quotas as necessary to provide fishing opportunity while meeting management objectives for the affected species (50 CFR 660.409). Inseason actions in the salmon fishery may be taken directly by NMFS (50 CFR 660.409(a)—Fixed inseason management provisions) or upon consultation with the Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) and the appropriate State Directors (50 CFR 660.409(b)—Flexible inseason management provisions). The state management agencies that participated in the consultations described in this document were: Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW), Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW), and California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW). Management of the salmon fisheries is generally divided into two geographic areas: north of Cape Falcon (U.S./ Canada border to Cape Falcon, OR) and south of Cape Falcon (Cape Falcon, OR, to the U.S./Mexico border). The inseason actions reported in this document affected fisheries north and south of Cape Falcon. Within the north of Cape Falcon area, there are four management subareas: The Neah Bay subarea (also known as Washington state marine area 4) extends from the U.S./Canada border to Cape Alava, WA; the La Push subarea (also known as Washington state marine area 3) extends from Cape Alava, WA, to the Queets River, WA; the Westport subarea (also known as Washington state marine area 2) extends from the Queets River, WA, to Leadbetter Point, WA; and the Columbia River subarea (which includes Washington state marine area 1) extends from Leadbetter Point, WA, to Cape Falcon, OR. All times mentioned refer to Pacific daylight time. Inseason Actions Inseason Action #6 Description of action: Inseason action #6 cancelled the commercial ocean salmon fishery from Cape Alava to the Queets River (La Push subarea) PO 00000 Frm 00045 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 87845 previously scheduled for June 10–16, 2016 and June 24–30, 2016. Effective dates: Inseason action #6 took effect on June 10, 2016, and remained in effect through June 30, 2016. Reason and authorization for the action: The purpose of this action, in combination with inseason action #7, was to avoid exceeding the guideline set preseason for the Neah Bay and La Push subareas. The Regional Administrator (RA) considered Chinook landings to date and fishery effort and determined that this inseason action was necessary to meet the guideline set preseason. Inseason action to modify quotas and/or fishing seasons is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(i). Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #6 occurred on June 8, 2016. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW. Inseason Action #7 Description of action: Inseason action #7 reduced the landing limit in the commercial ocean salmon fishery in the area from the U.S./Canada Border to Cape Alava (Neah Bay subarea, also known as Washington State Marine Area 4) from 40 Chinook per vessel per open period to 15 Chinook per vessel per open period. All fishers intending to fish north of Cape Alava must declare that intention before fishing by first notifying WDFW at 360–249–1215 with the following information: Boat name and approximate time they intend to fish in Washington State Marine Area 4, and destination at the end of the trip. All fish from Washington State Marine Area 4 must be landed before fishing any other area. All salmon from other areas must be landed before fishing for salmon in Washington State Marine Area 4. It is unlawful to possess salmon on board from any other area while also possessing salmon from Washington State Marine Area 4. Effective dates: Inseason action #7 took effect on June 10, 2016, and remained in effect until superseded by inseason action #9 on June 24, 2016. Reason and authorization for the action: The purpose of this action, in combination with inseason action #6, was to avoid exceeding the guideline set preseason for the Neah Bay and La Push subareas. The RA considered Chinook landings to date and fishery effort, and determined that this inseason action was necessary to meet the guideline set preseason. Inseason action to modify limited retention regulations is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(ii). Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #7 E:\FR\FM\06DER1.SGM 06DER1 87846 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 234 / Tuesday, December 6, 2016 / Rules and Regulations occurred on June 8, 2016. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW. mstockstill on DSK3G9T082PROD with RULES Inseason Action #8 Description of action: Inseason action #8 increased the landing limit in the commercial ocean salmon fishery in the area from the Queets River to Cape Falcon, OR (Westport and Columbia River subareas), from 40 Chinook per vessel per open period to 65 Chinook per vessel per open period. Effective dates: Inseason action #8 took effect on June 10, 2016, and remained in effect until superseded by inseason action #10 on June 24, 2016. Reason and authorization for the action: The purpose of this action was to allow greater access to available quota. The RA considered Chinook landings to date and fishery efforts, and determined that inseason action was required to allow the greater access to remaining Chinook quota in the May– June commercial fishery in the Westport and Columbia River subareas. Inseason action to modify limited retention regulations is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(ii). Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #8 occurred on June 8, 2016. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW. Inseason Action #9 Description of action: Inseason action #9 reduced the landing limit in the commercial ocean salmon fishery in the area from the U.S./Canada Border to Cape Alava (Neah Bay subarea, also known as Washington State Marine Area 4) from 15 Chinook per vessel per open period to 14 Chinook per vessel per open period. All fishers intending to fish north of Cape Alava must declare that intention before fishing by first notifying WDFW at 360–249–1215 with the following information: boat name and approximate time they intend to fish in Washington State Marine Area 4, and destination at the end of the trip. All fish from Washington State Marine Area 4 must be landed before fishing any other area. All salmon from other areas must be landed before fishing for salmon in Washington State Marine Area 4. It is unlawful to possess salmon on board from any other area while also possessing salmon from Washington State Marine Area 4. Effective dates: Inseason action #9 superseded inseason action #7 on June 24, 2016, and remained in effect through June 30, 2016. Reason and authorization for the action: The purpose of this action was to avoid exceeding the guideline set VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:55 Dec 05, 2016 Jkt 241001 preseason for the Neah Bay and La Push subareas. The RA considered Chinook landings to date and fishery effort, and determined that this inseason action was necessary to meet the guideline set preseason. Inseason action to modify limited retention regulations is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(ii). Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #9 occurred on June 22, 2016. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW. Inseason Action #10 Description of action: Inseason action #10 decreased the landing limit in the commercial ocean salmon fishery in the area from the Queets River to Cape Falcon, OR (Westport and Columbia River subareas), from 65 Chinook per vessel per open period to 40 Chinook per vessel per open period. Effective dates: Inseason action #10 superseded inseason action #8 on June 24, 2016, and remained in effect through June 30, 2016. Reason and authorization for the action: The purpose of this action was to avoid exceeding the quota set preseason for the May–June fishery. The RA considered Chinook landings to date and fishery effort and determined that inseason action was required due to increased fishing effort and landings. Inseason action to modify limited retention regulations is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(ii). Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #10 occurred on June 22, 2016. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW. Inseason Action #11 Description of action: Inseason action #11 increased the landing limit in the commercial ocean salmon fishery in the area from the U.S./Canada Border to Queets River, WA (Neah Bay and La Push subareas), from 50 Chinook per vessel per open period to 60 Chinook per vessel per open period. Effective dates: Inseason action #11 took effect on July 8, 2016, and remained in effect until superseded by inseason action #16 on July 22, 2016. Reason and authorization for the action: The purpose of this action was to allow access to available quota in the summer Chinook fishery. The RA considered Chinook landings and effort in the May–June fishery and the anticipated reduction in effort due to some fishers leaving the north of Falcon salmon fishery for other fisheries (i.e., tuna and Alaska salmon) and determined that inseason action was appropriate to provide access to the PO 00000 Frm 00046 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 available quota. Inseason action to modify limited retention regulations is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(ii). Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #11 occurred on June 22, 2016. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW. Inseason Action #12 Description of action: Inseason action #12 increased the landing limit in the commercial ocean salmon fishery in the area from Queets River, WA, to Cape Falcon, OR (Westport and Columbia River subareas), from 50 Chinook per vessel per open period to 80 Chinook per vessel per open period. Effective dates: Inseason action #12 took effect on July 8, 2016, and remained in effect until superseded by inseason action #16 on July 22, 2016. Reason and authorization for the action: The purpose of this action was to allow access to available quota in the summer Chinook fishery. The RA considered Chinook landings and effort in the May–June fishery and the anticipated reduction in effort due to some fishers leaving the north of Falcon salmon fishery for other fisheries (i.e., tuna and Alaska salmon) and determined that inseason action was appropriate to provide access to the available quota. Inseason action to modify limited retention regulations is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(ii). Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #12 occurred on June 22, 2016. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW. Inseason Action #13 Description of action: Inseason action #13 extended retention of Pacific halibut caught incidental to commercial ocean salmon fishing (U.S./Canada border to U.S./Mexico border) beyond the June 30, 2016, closure date announced preseason. Pacific halibut retention will continue without any changes to landing and possession requirements until further notice. Effective dates: Inseason action #13 took effect on July 1, 2016, and remains in effect until the earlier of the end of the 2016 commercial salmon season or until the remaining allocation of incidental halibut is landed, when a closure will be implemented by inseason action. Reason and authorization for the action: The International Pacific Halibut Commission (IPHC) establishes an annual allocation of Pacific halibut that can be retained when caught incidental to commercial salmon fishing by fishers who possess the necessary IPHC license. E:\FR\FM\06DER1.SGM 06DER1 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 234 / Tuesday, December 6, 2016 / Rules and Regulations The annual ocean salmon management measures (81 FR 26157, May 2, 2016) authorized halibut retention only during April, May, and June of the 2016 commercial salmon seasons and after June 30, 2016, if quota remains. The RA considered Pacific halibut and Chinook salmon landings to date, and fishery effort, and determined that sufficient halibut allocation remained to allow retention to continue for the foreseeable future. Inseason action to modify quotas and/or fishing seasons is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(i). Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #13 occurred on June 22, 2016. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, ODFW, and CDFW. mstockstill on DSK3G9T082PROD with RULES Inseason Action #14 Description of action: Inseason action #14 increased the landing limit in the commercial ocean salmon fishery from Cape Falcon, OR, to Humbug Mountain, OR, beginning September 1, from 40 Chinook per vessel per landing week (Thursday through Wednesday) to 45 Chinook per vessel per landing week (Thursday through Wednesday). Effective dates: Inseason action #14 took effect September 1, 2016, and remains in effect until the end of the fishery, October 31, 2016, unless superseded by inseason action. Reason and authorization for the action: This action was taken to implement guidance provided by the State of Oregon at the April 2016 Council meeting. The RA considered the information from the Council records and concurred with making this adjustment inseason. Inseason action to modify limited retention regulations is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(ii). Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #14 occurred on June 22, 2016. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, ODFW, and CDFW. Inseason Action #15 Description of action: Inseason action #15 adjusted the Chinook salmon quota in the commercial ocean salmon fishery from Humbug Mountain, OR, to the Oregon/California border for the month of July 2016 from 200 Chinook to 594 Chinook, due to a rollover of unused quota from June. Effective dates: Inseason action #15 took effect on July 8, 2016, and remained in effect through July 31, 2016. Reason and authorization for the action: The annual ocean salmon management measures (81 FR 26157, May 2, 2016) for the commercial ocean VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:27 Dec 05, 2016 Jkt 241001 salmon fishery in the Oregon Klamath Management Zone (Humbug Mountain, OR, to the Oregon/California border) include the following provision: Any remaining portion of the June Chinook quota may be transferred inseason on an impact-neutral basis to the July quota period. The June fishery closed with 510 Chinook salmon remaining on the quota. The Council’s Salmon Technical Team calculated the rollover of these fish from the June-to-July fishing period on an impact neutral basis for Klamath River fall Chinook salmon. The resulting rollover amount was 394 Chinook; this was added to the 200 Chinook quota set preseason for July, for a total adjusted July quota of 594 Chinook salmon. The RA concurred with this impact-neutral rollover of quota. Inseason action to modify quotas and/or fishing seasons is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(i). Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #15 occurred on July 8, 2016. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, ODFW, and CDFW. Inseason Action #16 Description of action: Inseason action #16 increased the landing limit in the commercial ocean salmon fishery from 60 Chinook per vessel per open period to 125 Chinook per vessel per open period in the area from the U.S./Canada border to Queets River, WA (Neah Bay and La Push subareas), and from 60 Chinook per vessel per open period to 150 Chinook per vessel per open period in the area from Queets River, WA, to Cape Falcon, OR (Westport and Columbia River subareas). Effective dates: Inseason action #16 superseded inseason actions #11 and #12 on July 22, 2016, and remained in effect until superseded by inseason action #18 on August 1, 2016. Reason and authorization for the action: The purpose of this action was to allow greater access to available quota. The RA considered Chinook landings to date and fishery efforts, and determined that inseason action was required to allow the greater access to remaining Chinook quota. Inseason action to modify limited retention regulations is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(ii). Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #16 occurred on July 20, 2016. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW. Inseason Action #17 Description of action: Inseason action #17 adjusted the daily bag limit in the recreational ocean salmon fishery from Queets River, WA, to Leadbetter Point, PO 00000 Frm 00047 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 87847 WA (Westport subarea), to allow retention of two Chinook; previously only one Chinook was allowed. Effective dates: Inseason action #17 took effect on July 23, 2016, and remained in effect through August 21, 2016. Reason and authorization for the action: This action was taken to allow greater access to available quota. The RA considered Chinook landings to date and fishery efforts, and determined that inseason action was required to allow the greater access to remaining Chinook quota. Inseason action to modify recreational bag limits is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(iii). Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #17 occurred on July 20, 2016. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW. Inseason Action #18 Description of action: Inseason action #18 increased the landing limit in the commercial ocean salmon fishery from the U.S./Canada border to Cape Falcon, OR, to 225 Chinook per vessel per open period. Previously, under inseason action #16, the landing limits were 125 Chinook in the Neah Bay and La Push subareas, and 150 Chinook in the Westport and Columbia River subareas. Effective dates: Inseason action #18 superseded inseason action #16 on August 1, 2016, and remained in effect until superseded by inseason action #20 on August 15, 2016. Reason and authorization for the action: The purpose of this action was to allow greater access to available quota. The RA considered Chinook landings to date and fishery efforts, and determined that inseason action was required to allow the greater access to remaining Chinook quota. Inseason action to modify limited retention regulations is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(ii). Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #18 occurred on July 29, 2016. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW. Inseason Action #19 Description of action: Inseason action #19 adjusted the daily bag limit in the recreational ocean salmon fishery from Leadbetter Point, WA, to Cape Falcon, OR (Columbia River subarea), to allow retention of two Chinook; previously only one Chinook was allowed. Effective dates: Inseason action #19 took effect on August 16, 2016, and remained in effect until the fishery was closed on August 27, 2016, under inseason action #21. E:\FR\FM\06DER1.SGM 06DER1 87848 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 234 / Tuesday, December 6, 2016 / Rules and Regulations Reason and authorization for the action: This action was taken to allow greater access to available quota. The RA considered Chinook landings to date and fishery efforts, and determined that inseason action was required to allow the greater access to remaining Chinook quota. Inseason action to modify recreational bag limits is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(iii). Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #19 occurred on August 10, 2016. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW. Inseason Action #20 Description of action: Inseason action #20 increased the landing limit in the commercial ocean salmon fishery from the U.S./Canada border to Cape Falcon, OR, from 225 Chinook per vessel per open period to 300 Chinook per vessel per open period. Effective dates: Inseason action #20 superseded inseason action #18 on August 15, 2016, and remained in effect through August 23, 2016. Reason and authorization for the action: The purpose of this action was to allow greater access to available quota. The RA considered Chinook landings to date and fishery efforts, and determined that inseason action was required to allow the greater access to remaining Chinook quota. Inseason action to modify limited retention regulations is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(ii). Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #20 occurred on August 10, 2016. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW. Inseason Action #21 mstockstill on DSK3G9T082PROD with RULES Description of action: Inseason action #21 closed the recreational ocean salmon fishery from Leadbetter Point, WA, to Cape Falcon, OR (Columbia VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:27 Dec 05, 2016 Jkt 241001 River subarea), at 11:59 p.m., Saturday, August 27, 2016. Effective dates: Inseason action #21 took effect at 11:59 p.m., Saturday, August 27, 2016. Reason and authorization for the action: This action was taken in response to recent increases in fishing effort and catch of coho salmon in the Columbia River subarea, and fishery forecasts that projected the coho quota would soon be attained. The RA considered coho landings to date and fishery efforts, and determined that inseason action was required to avoid exceeding the coho quota for this fishery. Inseason action to close salmon fisheries when attainment of the quota is projected is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(a)(1). Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #21 occurred on August 26, 2016. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW. All other restrictions and regulations remain in effect as announced for the 2016 ocean salmon fisheries and 2017 salmon fisheries opening prior to May 1, 2017 (81 FR 26157, May 2, 2016) and as modified by prior inseason actions. The RA determined that the best available information indicated that halibut, coho, and Chinook salmon abundance forecasts and expected fishery effort supported the above inseason actions recommended by the states of Washington and Oregon. The states manage the fisheries in state waters adjacent to the areas of the U.S. exclusive economic zone in accordance with these Federal actions. As provided by the inseason notice procedures of 50 CFR 660.411, actual notice of the described regulatory actions was given, prior to the time the action was effective, by telephone hotline numbers 206–526–6667 and 800–662–9825, and by U.S. Coast Guard Notice to Mariners broadcasts on Channel 16 VHF–FM and 2182 kHz. PO 00000 Frm 00048 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 9990 Classification The Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, NOAA (AA), finds that good cause exists for this notification to be issued without affording prior notice and opportunity for public comment under 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) because such notification would be impracticable. As previously noted, actual notice of the regulatory actions was provided to fishers through telephone hotline and radio notification. These actions comply with the requirements of the annual management measures for ocean salmon fisheries (81 FR 26157, May 2, 2016), the FMP, and regulations implementing the FMP (50 CFR 660.409 and 660.411). Prior notice and opportunity for public comment was impracticable because NMFS and the state agencies had insufficient time to provide for prior notice and the opportunity for public comment between the time Chinook salmon catch and effort projections were developed and fisheries impacts were calculated, and the time the fishery modifications had to be implemented in order to ensure that fisheries are managed based on the best available scientific information, ensuring that conservation objectives and ESA consultation standards are not exceeded. The AA also finds good cause to waive the 30-day delay in effectiveness required under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3), as a delay in effectiveness of these actions would allow fishing at levels inconsistent with the goals of the FMP and the current management measures. These actions are authorized by 50 CFR 660.409 and 660.411 and are exempt from review under Executive Order 12866. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Dated: November 30, 2016. Emily H. Menashes, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2016–29135 Filed 12–5–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P E:\FR\FM\06DER1.SGM 06DER1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 234 (Tuesday, December 6, 2016)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 87845-87848]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-29135]



[[Page 87845]]

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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 660

[Docket No. 151117999-6370-01]
RIN 0648-XE680


Fisheries Off West Coast States; Modifications of the West Coast 
Commercial and Recreational Salmon Fisheries; Inseason Actions #6 
Through #21

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

ACTION: Modification of fishing seasons; request for comments.

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SUMMARY: NMFS announces 16 inseason actions in the ocean salmon 
fisheries. These inseason actions modified the commercial and 
recreational salmon fisheries in the area from the U.S./Canada border 
to the U.S./Mexico border.

DATES: The effective dates for the inseason actions are set out in this 
document under the heading Inseason Actions. Comments will be accepted 
through December 21, 2016.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by NOAA-NMFS-2016-0007, 
by any one of the following methods:
     Electronic Submissions: Submit all electronic public 
comments via the Federal eRulemaking Portal. Go to www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-2016-0007, click the ``Comment Now!'' icon, 
complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments.
     Mail: Barry A. Thom, Regional Administrator, West Coast 
Region, NMFS, 7600 Sand Point Way NE., Seattle, WA 98115-6349
    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).

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Peggy Mundy at 206-526-4323.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Background

    In the 2016 annual management measures for ocean salmon fisheries 
(81 FR 26157, May 2, 2016), NMFS announced the commercial and 
recreational fisheries in the area from the U.S./Canada border to the 
U.S./Mexico border, beginning May 1, 2016, and 2017 salmon fisheries 
opening earlier than May 1, 2017. NMFS is authorized to implement 
inseason management actions to modify fishing seasons and quotas as 
necessary to provide fishing opportunity while meeting management 
objectives for the affected species (50 CFR 660.409). Inseason actions 
in the salmon fishery may be taken directly by NMFS (50 CFR 
660.409(a)--Fixed inseason management provisions) or upon consultation 
with the Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) and the 
appropriate State Directors (50 CFR 660.409(b)--Flexible inseason 
management provisions). The state management agencies that participated 
in the consultations described in this document were: Washington 
Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW), Oregon Department of Fish and 
Wildlife (ODFW), and California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW).
    Management of the salmon fisheries is generally divided into two 
geographic areas: north of Cape Falcon (U.S./Canada border to Cape 
Falcon, OR) and south of Cape Falcon (Cape Falcon, OR, to the U.S./
Mexico border). The inseason actions reported in this document affected 
fisheries north and south of Cape Falcon. Within the north of Cape 
Falcon area, there are four management subareas: The Neah Bay subarea 
(also known as Washington state marine area 4) extends from the U.S./
Canada border to Cape Alava, WA; the La Push subarea (also known as 
Washington state marine area 3) extends from Cape Alava, WA, to the 
Queets River, WA; the Westport subarea (also known as Washington state 
marine area 2) extends from the Queets River, WA, to Leadbetter Point, 
WA; and the Columbia River subarea (which includes Washington state 
marine area 1) extends from Leadbetter Point, WA, to Cape Falcon, OR. 
All times mentioned refer to Pacific daylight time.

Inseason Actions

Inseason Action #6

    Description of action: Inseason action #6 cancelled the commercial 
ocean salmon fishery from Cape Alava to the Queets River (La Push 
subarea) previously scheduled for June 10-16, 2016 and June 24-30, 
2016.
    Effective dates: Inseason action #6 took effect on June 10, 2016, 
and remained in effect through June 30, 2016.
    Reason and authorization for the action: The purpose of this 
action, in combination with inseason action #7, was to avoid exceeding 
the guideline set preseason for the Neah Bay and La Push subareas. The 
Regional Administrator (RA) considered Chinook landings to date and 
fishery effort and determined that this inseason action was necessary 
to meet the guideline set preseason. Inseason action to modify quotas 
and/or fishing seasons is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(i).
    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action 
#6 occurred on June 8, 2016. Participants in this consultation were 
staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW.

Inseason Action #7

    Description of action: Inseason action #7 reduced the landing limit 
in the commercial ocean salmon fishery in the area from the U.S./Canada 
Border to Cape Alava (Neah Bay subarea, also known as Washington State 
Marine Area 4) from 40 Chinook per vessel per open period to 15 Chinook 
per vessel per open period. All fishers intending to fish north of Cape 
Alava must declare that intention before fishing by first notifying 
WDFW at 360-249-1215 with the following information: Boat name and 
approximate time they intend to fish in Washington State Marine Area 4, 
and destination at the end of the trip. All fish from Washington State 
Marine Area 4 must be landed before fishing any other area. All salmon 
from other areas must be landed before fishing for salmon in Washington 
State Marine Area 4. It is unlawful to possess salmon on board from any 
other area while also possessing salmon from Washington State Marine 
Area 4.
    Effective dates: Inseason action #7 took effect on June 10, 2016, 
and remained in effect until superseded by inseason action #9 on June 
24, 2016.
    Reason and authorization for the action: The purpose of this 
action, in combination with inseason action #6, was to avoid exceeding 
the guideline set preseason for the Neah Bay and La Push subareas. The 
RA considered Chinook landings to date and fishery effort, and 
determined that this inseason action was necessary to meet the 
guideline set preseason. Inseason action to modify limited retention 
regulations is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(ii).
    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action 
#7

[[Page 87846]]

occurred on June 8, 2016. Participants in this consultation were staff 
from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW.

Inseason Action #8

    Description of action: Inseason action #8 increased the landing 
limit in the commercial ocean salmon fishery in the area from the 
Queets River to Cape Falcon, OR (Westport and Columbia River subareas), 
from 40 Chinook per vessel per open period to 65 Chinook per vessel per 
open period.
    Effective dates: Inseason action #8 took effect on June 10, 2016, 
and remained in effect until superseded by inseason action #10 on June 
24, 2016.
    Reason and authorization for the action: The purpose of this action 
was to allow greater access to available quota. The RA considered 
Chinook landings to date and fishery efforts, and determined that 
inseason action was required to allow the greater access to remaining 
Chinook quota in the May-June commercial fishery in the Westport and 
Columbia River subareas. Inseason action to modify limited retention 
regulations is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(ii).
    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action 
#8 occurred on June 8, 2016. Participants in this consultation were 
staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW.

Inseason Action #9

    Description of action: Inseason action #9 reduced the landing limit 
in the commercial ocean salmon fishery in the area from the U.S./Canada 
Border to Cape Alava (Neah Bay subarea, also known as Washington State 
Marine Area 4) from 15 Chinook per vessel per open period to 14 Chinook 
per vessel per open period. All fishers intending to fish north of Cape 
Alava must declare that intention before fishing by first notifying 
WDFW at 360-249-1215 with the following information: boat name and 
approximate time they intend to fish in Washington State Marine Area 4, 
and destination at the end of the trip. All fish from Washington State 
Marine Area 4 must be landed before fishing any other area. All salmon 
from other areas must be landed before fishing for salmon in Washington 
State Marine Area 4. It is unlawful to possess salmon on board from any 
other area while also possessing salmon from Washington State Marine 
Area 4.
    Effective dates: Inseason action #9 superseded inseason action #7 
on June 24, 2016, and remained in effect through June 30, 2016.
    Reason and authorization for the action: The purpose of this action 
was to avoid exceeding the guideline set preseason for the Neah Bay and 
La Push subareas. The RA considered Chinook landings to date and 
fishery effort, and determined that this inseason action was necessary 
to meet the guideline set preseason. Inseason action to modify limited 
retention regulations is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(ii).
    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action 
#9 occurred on June 22, 2016. Participants in this consultation were 
staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW.

Inseason Action #10

    Description of action: Inseason action #10 decreased the landing 
limit in the commercial ocean salmon fishery in the area from the 
Queets River to Cape Falcon, OR (Westport and Columbia River subareas), 
from 65 Chinook per vessel per open period to 40 Chinook per vessel per 
open period.
    Effective dates: Inseason action #10 superseded inseason action #8 
on June 24, 2016, and remained in effect through June 30, 2016.
    Reason and authorization for the action: The purpose of this action 
was to avoid exceeding the quota set preseason for the May-June 
fishery. The RA considered Chinook landings to date and fishery effort 
and determined that inseason action was required due to increased 
fishing effort and landings. Inseason action to modify limited 
retention regulations is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(ii).
    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action 
#10 occurred on June 22, 2016. Participants in this consultation were 
staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW.

Inseason Action #11

    Description of action: Inseason action #11 increased the landing 
limit in the commercial ocean salmon fishery in the area from the U.S./
Canada Border to Queets River, WA (Neah Bay and La Push subareas), from 
50 Chinook per vessel per open period to 60 Chinook per vessel per open 
period.
    Effective dates: Inseason action #11 took effect on July 8, 2016, 
and remained in effect until superseded by inseason action #16 on July 
22, 2016.
    Reason and authorization for the action: The purpose of this action 
was to allow access to available quota in the summer Chinook fishery. 
The RA considered Chinook landings and effort in the May-June fishery 
and the anticipated reduction in effort due to some fishers leaving the 
north of Falcon salmon fishery for other fisheries (i.e., tuna and 
Alaska salmon) and determined that inseason action was appropriate to 
provide access to the available quota. Inseason action to modify 
limited retention regulations is authorized by 50 CFR 
660.409(b)(1)(ii).
    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action 
#11 occurred on June 22, 2016. Participants in this consultation were 
staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW.

Inseason Action #12

    Description of action: Inseason action #12 increased the landing 
limit in the commercial ocean salmon fishery in the area from Queets 
River, WA, to Cape Falcon, OR (Westport and Columbia River subareas), 
from 50 Chinook per vessel per open period to 80 Chinook per vessel per 
open period.
    Effective dates: Inseason action #12 took effect on July 8, 2016, 
and remained in effect until superseded by inseason action #16 on July 
22, 2016.
    Reason and authorization for the action: The purpose of this action 
was to allow access to available quota in the summer Chinook fishery. 
The RA considered Chinook landings and effort in the May-June fishery 
and the anticipated reduction in effort due to some fishers leaving the 
north of Falcon salmon fishery for other fisheries (i.e., tuna and 
Alaska salmon) and determined that inseason action was appropriate to 
provide access to the available quota. Inseason action to modify 
limited retention regulations is authorized by 50 CFR 
660.409(b)(1)(ii).
    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action 
#12 occurred on June 22, 2016. Participants in this consultation were 
staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW.

Inseason Action #13

    Description of action: Inseason action #13 extended retention of 
Pacific halibut caught incidental to commercial ocean salmon fishing 
(U.S./Canada border to U.S./Mexico border) beyond the June 30, 2016, 
closure date announced preseason. Pacific halibut retention will 
continue without any changes to landing and possession requirements 
until further notice.
    Effective dates: Inseason action #13 took effect on July 1, 2016, 
and remains in effect until the earlier of the end of the 2016 
commercial salmon season or until the remaining allocation of 
incidental halibut is landed, when a closure will be implemented by 
inseason action.
    Reason and authorization for the action: The International Pacific 
Halibut Commission (IPHC) establishes an annual allocation of Pacific 
halibut that can be retained when caught incidental to commercial 
salmon fishing by fishers who possess the necessary IPHC license.

[[Page 87847]]

The annual ocean salmon management measures (81 FR 26157, May 2, 2016) 
authorized halibut retention only during April, May, and June of the 
2016 commercial salmon seasons and after June 30, 2016, if quota 
remains. The RA considered Pacific halibut and Chinook salmon landings 
to date, and fishery effort, and determined that sufficient halibut 
allocation remained to allow retention to continue for the foreseeable 
future. Inseason action to modify quotas and/or fishing seasons is 
authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(i).
    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action 
#13 occurred on June 22, 2016. Participants in this consultation were 
staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, ODFW, and CDFW.

Inseason Action #14

    Description of action: Inseason action #14 increased the landing 
limit in the commercial ocean salmon fishery from Cape Falcon, OR, to 
Humbug Mountain, OR, beginning September 1, from 40 Chinook per vessel 
per landing week (Thursday through Wednesday) to 45 Chinook per vessel 
per landing week (Thursday through Wednesday).
    Effective dates: Inseason action #14 took effect September 1, 2016, 
and remains in effect until the end of the fishery, October 31, 2016, 
unless superseded by inseason action.
    Reason and authorization for the action: This action was taken to 
implement guidance provided by the State of Oregon at the April 2016 
Council meeting. The RA considered the information from the Council 
records and concurred with making this adjustment inseason. Inseason 
action to modify limited retention regulations is authorized by 50 CFR 
660.409(b)(1)(ii).
    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action 
#14 occurred on June 22, 2016. Participants in this consultation were 
staff from NMFS, Council, ODFW, and CDFW.

Inseason Action #15

    Description of action: Inseason action #15 adjusted the Chinook 
salmon quota in the commercial ocean salmon fishery from Humbug 
Mountain, OR, to the Oregon/California border for the month of July 
2016 from 200 Chinook to 594 Chinook, due to a rollover of unused quota 
from June.
    Effective dates: Inseason action #15 took effect on July 8, 2016, 
and remained in effect through July 31, 2016.
    Reason and authorization for the action: The annual ocean salmon 
management measures (81 FR 26157, May 2, 2016) for the commercial ocean 
salmon fishery in the Oregon Klamath Management Zone (Humbug Mountain, 
OR, to the Oregon/California border) include the following provision: 
Any remaining portion of the June Chinook quota may be transferred 
inseason on an impact-neutral basis to the July quota period. The June 
fishery closed with 510 Chinook salmon remaining on the quota. The 
Council's Salmon Technical Team calculated the rollover of these fish 
from the June-to-July fishing period on an impact neutral basis for 
Klamath River fall Chinook salmon. The resulting rollover amount was 
394 Chinook; this was added to the 200 Chinook quota set preseason for 
July, for a total adjusted July quota of 594 Chinook salmon. The RA 
concurred with this impact-neutral rollover of quota. Inseason action 
to modify quotas and/or fishing seasons is authorized by 50 CFR 
660.409(b)(1)(i).
    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action 
#15 occurred on July 8, 2016. Participants in this consultation were 
staff from NMFS, Council, ODFW, and CDFW.

Inseason Action #16

    Description of action: Inseason action #16 increased the landing 
limit in the commercial ocean salmon fishery from 60 Chinook per vessel 
per open period to 125 Chinook per vessel per open period in the area 
from the U.S./Canada border to Queets River, WA (Neah Bay and La Push 
subareas), and from 60 Chinook per vessel per open period to 150 
Chinook per vessel per open period in the area from Queets River, WA, 
to Cape Falcon, OR (Westport and Columbia River subareas).
    Effective dates: Inseason action #16 superseded inseason actions 
#11 and #12 on July 22, 2016, and remained in effect until superseded 
by inseason action #18 on August 1, 2016.
    Reason and authorization for the action: The purpose of this action 
was to allow greater access to available quota. The RA considered 
Chinook landings to date and fishery efforts, and determined that 
inseason action was required to allow the greater access to remaining 
Chinook quota. Inseason action to modify limited retention regulations 
is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(ii).
    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action 
#16 occurred on July 20, 2016. Participants in this consultation were 
staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW.

Inseason Action #17

    Description of action: Inseason action #17 adjusted the daily bag 
limit in the recreational ocean salmon fishery from Queets River, WA, 
to Leadbetter Point, WA (Westport subarea), to allow retention of two 
Chinook; previously only one Chinook was allowed.
    Effective dates: Inseason action #17 took effect on July 23, 2016, 
and remained in effect through August 21, 2016.
    Reason and authorization for the action: This action was taken to 
allow greater access to available quota. The RA considered Chinook 
landings to date and fishery efforts, and determined that inseason 
action was required to allow the greater access to remaining Chinook 
quota. Inseason action to modify recreational bag limits is authorized 
by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(iii).
    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action 
#17 occurred on July 20, 2016. Participants in this consultation were 
staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW.

Inseason Action #18

    Description of action: Inseason action #18 increased the landing 
limit in the commercial ocean salmon fishery from the U.S./Canada 
border to Cape Falcon, OR, to 225 Chinook per vessel per open period. 
Previously, under inseason action #16, the landing limits were 125 
Chinook in the Neah Bay and La Push subareas, and 150 Chinook in the 
Westport and Columbia River subareas.
    Effective dates: Inseason action #18 superseded inseason action #16 
on August 1, 2016, and remained in effect until superseded by inseason 
action #20 on August 15, 2016.
    Reason and authorization for the action: The purpose of this action 
was to allow greater access to available quota. The RA considered 
Chinook landings to date and fishery efforts, and determined that 
inseason action was required to allow the greater access to remaining 
Chinook quota. Inseason action to modify limited retention regulations 
is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(ii).
    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action 
#18 occurred on July 29, 2016. Participants in this consultation were 
staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW.

Inseason Action #19

    Description of action: Inseason action #19 adjusted the daily bag 
limit in the recreational ocean salmon fishery from Leadbetter Point, 
WA, to Cape Falcon, OR (Columbia River subarea), to allow retention of 
two Chinook; previously only one Chinook was allowed.
    Effective dates: Inseason action #19 took effect on August 16, 
2016, and remained in effect until the fishery was closed on August 27, 
2016, under inseason action #21.

[[Page 87848]]

    Reason and authorization for the action: This action was taken to 
allow greater access to available quota. The RA considered Chinook 
landings to date and fishery efforts, and determined that inseason 
action was required to allow the greater access to remaining Chinook 
quota. Inseason action to modify recreational bag limits is authorized 
by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(iii).
    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action 
#19 occurred on August 10, 2016. Participants in this consultation were 
staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW.

Inseason Action #20

    Description of action: Inseason action #20 increased the landing 
limit in the commercial ocean salmon fishery from the U.S./Canada 
border to Cape Falcon, OR, from 225 Chinook per vessel per open period 
to 300 Chinook per vessel per open period.
    Effective dates: Inseason action #20 superseded inseason action #18 
on August 15, 2016, and remained in effect through August 23, 2016.
    Reason and authorization for the action: The purpose of this action 
was to allow greater access to available quota. The RA considered 
Chinook landings to date and fishery efforts, and determined that 
inseason action was required to allow the greater access to remaining 
Chinook quota. Inseason action to modify limited retention regulations 
is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(ii).
    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action 
#20 occurred on August 10, 2016. Participants in this consultation were 
staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW.

Inseason Action #21

    Description of action: Inseason action #21 closed the recreational 
ocean salmon fishery from Leadbetter Point, WA, to Cape Falcon, OR 
(Columbia River subarea), at 11:59 p.m., Saturday, August 27, 2016.
    Effective dates: Inseason action #21 took effect at 11:59 p.m., 
Saturday, August 27, 2016.
    Reason and authorization for the action: This action was taken in 
response to recent increases in fishing effort and catch of coho salmon 
in the Columbia River subarea, and fishery forecasts that projected the 
coho quota would soon be attained. The RA considered coho landings to 
date and fishery efforts, and determined that inseason action was 
required to avoid exceeding the coho quota for this fishery. Inseason 
action to close salmon fisheries when attainment of the quota is 
projected is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(a)(1).
    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action 
#21 occurred on August 26, 2016. Participants in this consultation were 
staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW.
    All other restrictions and regulations remain in effect as 
announced for the 2016 ocean salmon fisheries and 2017 salmon fisheries 
opening prior to May 1, 2017 (81 FR 26157, May 2, 2016) and as modified 
by prior inseason actions.
    The RA determined that the best available information indicated 
that halibut, coho, and Chinook salmon abundance forecasts and expected 
fishery effort supported the above inseason actions recommended by the 
states of Washington and Oregon. The states manage the fisheries in 
state waters adjacent to the areas of the U.S. exclusive economic zone 
in accordance with these Federal actions. As provided by the inseason 
notice procedures of 50 CFR 660.411, actual notice of the described 
regulatory actions was given, prior to the time the action was 
effective, by telephone hotline numbers 206-526-6667 and 800-662-9825, 
and by U.S. Coast Guard Notice to Mariners broadcasts on Channel 16 
VHF-FM and 2182 kHz.

Classification

    The Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, NOAA (AA), finds that 
good cause exists for this notification to be issued without affording 
prior notice and opportunity for public comment under 5 U.S.C. 
553(b)(B) because such notification would be impracticable. As 
previously noted, actual notice of the regulatory actions was provided 
to fishers through telephone hotline and radio notification. These 
actions comply with the requirements of the annual management measures 
for ocean salmon fisheries (81 FR 26157, May 2, 2016), the FMP, and 
regulations implementing the FMP (50 CFR 660.409 and 660.411). Prior 
notice and opportunity for public comment was impracticable because 
NMFS and the state agencies had insufficient time to provide for prior 
notice and the opportunity for public comment between the time Chinook 
salmon catch and effort projections were developed and fisheries 
impacts were calculated, and the time the fishery modifications had to 
be implemented in order to ensure that fisheries are managed based on 
the best available scientific information, ensuring that conservation 
objectives and ESA consultation standards are not exceeded. The AA also 
finds good cause to waive the 30-day delay in effectiveness required 
under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3), as a delay in effectiveness of these actions 
would allow fishing at levels inconsistent with the goals of the FMP 
and the current management measures.
    These actions are authorized by 50 CFR 660.409 and 660.411 and are 
exempt from review under Executive Order 12866.

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

    Dated: November 30, 2016.
Emily H. Menashes,
Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2016-29135 Filed 12-5-16; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 3510-22-P