Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; General Provisions for Domestic Fisheries; Application for Exempted Fishing Permits, 52282-52283 [2017-24520]

Download as PDF 52282 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 217 / Monday, November 13, 2017 / Notices Dated: November 7, 2017. Sarah Brabson, NOAA PRA Clearance Officer. DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration [FR Doc. 2017–24471 Filed 11–9–17; 8:45 am] asabaliauskas on DSKBBXCHB2PROD with NOTICES Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request BILLING CODE 3510–22–P The Department of Commerce will submit to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for clearance the following proposal for collection of information under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35). Agency: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Title: Alaska Prohibited Species Donation Program. OMB Control Number: 0648–0316. Form Number(s): None. Type of Request: Regular (extension of a currently approved information collection). Number of Respondents: 1. Average Hours per Response: 50 hours for a three-year permit, annualized to 17. Burden Hours: 17. Needs and Uses: The prohibited species donation (PSD) program for salmon and halibut has effectively reduced regulatory discard of salmon and halibut by allowing fish that would otherwise be discarded to be donated to needy individuals through tax-exempt organizations. Vessels and processing plants participating in the PSD program voluntarily retain and process salmon and halibut bycatch. An authorized, taxexempt distributor, chosen by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), is responsible for monitoring retention and processing of fish donated by vessels and processors. The authorized distributor also coordinates processing, storage, transportation, and distribution of salmon and halibut. The PSD program requires an information collection so that NMFS can monitor the authorized distributors’ ability to effectively supervise program participants and ensure that donated fish are properly processed, stored, and distributed. Affected Public: Not-for-profit institution. Frequency: Every three years. Respondent’s Obligation: Mandatory. This information collection request may be viewed at reginfo.gov. Follow the instructions to view Department of Commerce collections currently under review by OMB. Written comments and recommendations for the proposed information collection should be sent within 30 days of publication of this notice to OIRA_Submission@ omb.eop.gov or fax to (202) 395–5806. DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:38 Nov 09, 2017 Jkt 244001 National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648–XF829 Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; General Provisions for Domestic Fisheries; Application for Exempted Fishing Permits National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice; request for comments. AGENCY: The Assistant Regional Administrator for Sustainable Fisheries, Greater Atlantic Region, NMFS, has made a preliminary determination that an Exempted Fishing Permit application contains all of the required information and warrants further consideration. This Exempted Fishing Permit would exempt a commercial fishing vessel from Atlantic sea scallop regulations in support of research conducted by the Coonamessett Farm Foundation. Regulations under the MagnusonStevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act require publication of this notification to provide interested parties the opportunity to comment on applications for proposed Exempted Fishing Permits. DATES: Comments must be received on or before November 28, 2017. ADDRESSES: You may submit written comments by any of the following methods: • Email: nmfs.gar.efp@noaa.gov. Include in the subject line ‘‘DA17–100 CFF BREP LA Flounder Sweep Study EFP.’’ • Mail: John K. Bullard, Regional Administrator, NMFS, Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office, 55 Great Republic Drive, Gloucester, MA 01930. Mark the outside of the envelope ‘‘Comments on DA17–100 CFF BREP LA Flounder Sweep Study EFP.’’ FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Shannah Jaburek, Fisheries Management Specialist, 978–282–8456. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Coonamessett Farm Foundation (CFF) submitted an application for an EFP on September 18, 2017, for a 2017 Bycatch Reduction Engineering Program project titled ‘‘A Modified Flounder Sweep for SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00019 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Flatfish Bycatch Reduction in the Limited Access (LA) Scallop Fishery.’’ The project would test a modified flounder cookie sweep on the outer bale bars of the scallop dredge and film fishdredge interactions to monitor the effectiveness of the gear modification in reducing flatfish bycatch. To conduct this experiment, vessels would require exemptions from the following regulations: Atlantic sea scallop crew size restrictions at 50 CFR 648.51(c); dredge gear obstruction restrictions at § 648.51(b)(4)(ii); Atlantic sea scallop observer program requirements at § 648.11(g); and closed area exemptions for Closed Area I at § 648.60(c), Closed Area II at § 648.60(d), Closed Area II Extension at § 648.60(e), and Nantucket Lightship at § 648.60(f). It would also exempt participating vessels from possession limits and minimum fish size requirements specified in 50 CFR part 648, subsections B and D through O, for biological sampling purposes only. Vessels would conduct scallop dredging between November 2017-June 2018, on 2 trips each lasting approximately 7 days-at-sea (DAS) each for a project total of 14 DAS. An average of 10 tows per day would be conducted for a maximum duration of 50 minutes at a tow speed range of 4.8–5.1 knots (2.5–2.6 m/s). Trips would take place in scallop open areas of Southern New England and Georges Bank along with scallop access areas Nantucket Lightship and Closed Areas I and II. The vessel would conduct all tows with two 15-foot (4.57-m) New Bedford Style dredges, one acting as a control dredge and one acting as an experimental dredge. The vessel would tow both dredges simultaneously to reduce spatial and temporal variability. Researchers would attach the two 9-foot (2.74-m) cookie sweeps to each of the outer bale bars using chain and shackles on the experimental dredge. The cookie sweeps would alternate between the two dredges each tow to reduce ‘‘side’’ effects. The cookie sweeps would be constructed of round rubber disks with lead cookies approximately 3–4 inches (7.6–10.2 cm) in diameter evenly spaced to encourage bottom contact. The attachment chains would be evenly spaced and varied in length to account for dredge position while being towed to ensure contact with the ocean bottom. Exemption from the dredge gear obstruction regulation would allow researchers to use the cookie sweep for the experimental tows. Researchers would weigh all scallop catch in industry bushel baskets caught in both dredges and measure a onebasket sub-sample from each side in 5- E:\FR\FM\13NON1.SGM 13NON1 52283 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 217 / Monday, November 13, 2017 / Notices millimeter increments. The researchers would also obtain total weight of bycatch species and individual measurements to the nearest centimeter. If the volume of the catch is large, subsampling protocols would be necessary. All bycatch would be returned to the sea as soon as practicable following data collection. Exemption from possession limit and minimum sizes would support catch sampling activities, and ensure the vessel is not in conflict with possession regulations while collecting catch data. Researchers would discard all catch above a possession limit or below a minimum size as soon as practicable following data collection. The table below lists the anticipated catch for the project. No catch would be landed for sale. Weight (lb) Species Scallop ..................................................................................................................................................................... Northeast Skate Complex (Barndoor Skate not included) ...................................................................................... Barndoor Skate ........................................................................................................................................................ Summer Flounder .................................................................................................................................................... Winter Flounder ....................................................................................................................................................... Yellowtail Flounder .................................................................................................................................................. Windowpane Flounder ............................................................................................................................................. Monkfish ................................................................................................................................................................... Researchers need additional exemptions to deploy dredge gear in closed areas in order to help locate large enough aggregations of flatfish to test the experimental gear. Participating vessels need crew size waivers to accommodate science personnel and possession waivers would enable them to conduct data collection activities. We would waive the observer program notification requirements because the research activity is not representative of standard fishing activity. If approved, the applicant may request minor modifications and extensions to the EFP throughout the year. EFP modifications and extensions may be granted without further notice if they are deemed essential to facilitate completion of the proposed research and have minimal impacts that do not change the scope or impact of the initially approved EFP request. Any fishing activity conducted outside the scope of the exempted fishing activity would be prohibited. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Dated: November 7, 2017. Emily H. Menashes, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2017–24520 Filed 11–9–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P asabaliauskas on DSKBBXCHB2PROD with NOTICES DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648–XF816 Fisheries of the South Atlantic; Southeast Data, Assessment, and Review (SEDAR); Public Meeting National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and AGENCY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:38 Nov 09, 2017 Jkt 244001 Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice of SEDAR 55 Assessment Scoping webinar II. The SEDAR 55 assessment of the South Atlantic stock of Vermilion Snapper will consist of a series of webinars. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION. DATES: A SEDAR 55 Assessment Scoping webinar II will be held on Tuesday, November 28, 2017, from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. ADDRESSES: Meeting address: The meetings will be held via webinar. The webinars are open to members of the public. Those interested in participating should contact Julia Byrd at SEDAR (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT) to request an invitation providing webinar access information. Please request webinar invitations at least 24 hours in advance of each webinar. SEDAR address: South Atlantic Fishery Management Council, 4055 Faber Place Drive, Suite 201, N. Charleston, SC 29405; www.sedarweb.org. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Julia Byrd, SEDAR Coordinator, 4055 Faber Place Drive, Suite 201, North Charleston, SC 29405; phone: (843) 571– 4366; email: julia.byrd@safmc.net. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Gulf of Mexico, South Atlantic, and Caribbean Fishery Management Councils, in conjunction with NOAA Fisheries and the Atlantic and Gulf States Marine Fisheries Commissions, have implemented the Southeast Data, Assessment and Review (SEDAR) process, a multi-step method for determining the status of fish stocks in the Southeast Region. The product of the SEDAR webinar series will be a report which compiles and evaluates SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00020 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 20,000 50,000 250 90 250 750 750 1,750 Weight (kg) 9,072 22,680 113 41 113 340 340 794 potential datasets and recommends which datasets are appropriate for assessment analyses, and describes the fisheries, evaluates the status of the stock, estimates biological benchmarks, projects future population conditions, and recommends research and monitoring needs. Participants for SEDAR Workshops are appointed by the Gulf of Mexico, South Atlantic, and Caribbean Fishery Management Councils and NOAA Fisheries Southeast Regional Office, Highly Migratory Species Management Division, and Southeast Fisheries Science Center. Participants include: Data collectors and database managers; stock assessment scientists, biologists, and researchers; constituency representatives including fishermen, environmentalists, and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs); international experts; and staff of Councils, Commissions, and state and federal agencies. The items of discussion in the Assessment Scoping webinar II are as follows: Participants will review data and discuss data issues, as necessary, and initial model issues. Although non-emergency issues not contained in this agenda may come before this group for discussion, those issues may not be the subject of formal action during this meeting. Action will be restricted to those issues specifically identified in this notice and any issues arising after publication of this notice that require emergency action under section 305(c) of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, provided the public has been notified of the intent to take final action to address the emergency. Special Accommodations This meeting is accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for auxiliary aids should be directed to the SAFMC E:\FR\FM\13NON1.SGM 13NON1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 217 (Monday, November 13, 2017)]
[Notices]
[Pages 52282-52283]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-24520]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

RIN 0648-XF829


Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; General Provisions for Domestic 
Fisheries; Application for Exempted Fishing Permits

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

ACTION: Notice; request for comments.

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

SUMMARY: The Assistant Regional Administrator for Sustainable 
Fisheries, Greater Atlantic Region, NMFS, has made a preliminary 
determination that an Exempted Fishing Permit application contains all 
of the required information and warrants further consideration. This 
Exempted Fishing Permit would exempt a commercial fishing vessel from 
Atlantic sea scallop regulations in support of research conducted by 
the Coonamessett Farm Foundation. Regulations under the Magnuson-
Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act require publication of 
this notification to provide interested parties the opportunity to 
comment on applications for proposed Exempted Fishing Permits.

DATES: Comments must be received on or before November 28, 2017.

ADDRESSES: You may submit written comments by any of the following 
methods:
     Email: nmfs.gar.efp@noaa.gov. Include in the subject line 
``DA17-100 CFF BREP LA Flounder Sweep Study EFP.''
     Mail: John K. Bullard, Regional Administrator, NMFS, 
Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office, 55 Great Republic Drive, 
Gloucester, MA 01930. Mark the outside of the envelope ``Comments on 
DA17-100 CFF BREP LA Flounder Sweep Study EFP.''

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Shannah Jaburek, Fisheries Management 
Specialist, 978-282-8456.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Coonamessett Farm Foundation (CFF) submitted 
an application for an EFP on September 18, 2017, for a 2017 Bycatch 
Reduction Engineering Program project titled ``A Modified Flounder 
Sweep for Flatfish Bycatch Reduction in the Limited Access (LA) Scallop 
Fishery.'' The project would test a modified flounder cookie sweep on 
the outer bale bars of the scallop dredge and film fish-dredge 
interactions to monitor the effectiveness of the gear modification in 
reducing flatfish bycatch.
    To conduct this experiment, vessels would require exemptions from 
the following regulations: Atlantic sea scallop crew size restrictions 
at 50 CFR 648.51(c); dredge gear obstruction restrictions at Sec.  
648.51(b)(4)(ii); Atlantic sea scallop observer program requirements at 
Sec.  648.11(g); and closed area exemptions for Closed Area I at Sec.  
648.60(c), Closed Area II at Sec.  648.60(d), Closed Area II Extension 
at Sec.  648.60(e), and Nantucket Lightship at Sec.  648.60(f). It 
would also exempt participating vessels from possession limits and 
minimum fish size requirements specified in 50 CFR part 648, 
subsections B and D through O, for biological sampling purposes only.
    Vessels would conduct scallop dredging between November 2017-June 
2018, on 2 trips each lasting approximately 7 days-at-sea (DAS) each 
for a project total of 14 DAS. An average of 10 tows per day would be 
conducted for a maximum duration of 50 minutes at a tow speed range of 
4.8-5.1 knots (2.5-2.6 m/s). Trips would take place in scallop open 
areas of Southern New England and Georges Bank along with scallop 
access areas Nantucket Lightship and Closed Areas I and II.
    The vessel would conduct all tows with two 15-foot (4.57-m) New 
Bedford Style dredges, one acting as a control dredge and one acting as 
an experimental dredge. The vessel would tow both dredges 
simultaneously to reduce spatial and temporal variability. Researchers 
would attach the two 9-foot (2.74-m) cookie sweeps to each of the outer 
bale bars using chain and shackles on the experimental dredge. The 
cookie sweeps would alternate between the two dredges each tow to 
reduce ``side'' effects. The cookie sweeps would be constructed of 
round rubber disks with lead cookies approximately 3-4 inches (7.6-10.2 
cm) in diameter evenly spaced to encourage bottom contact. The 
attachment chains would be evenly spaced and varied in length to 
account for dredge position while being towed to ensure contact with 
the ocean bottom. Exemption from the dredge gear obstruction regulation 
would allow researchers to use the cookie sweep for the experimental 
tows.
    Researchers would weigh all scallop catch in industry bushel 
baskets caught in both dredges and measure a one-basket sub-sample from 
each side in 5-

[[Page 52283]]

millimeter increments. The researchers would also obtain total weight 
of bycatch species and individual measurements to the nearest 
centimeter. If the volume of the catch is large, subsampling protocols 
would be necessary. All bycatch would be returned to the sea as soon as 
practicable following data collection. Exemption from possession limit 
and minimum sizes would support catch sampling activities, and ensure 
the vessel is not in conflict with possession regulations while 
collecting catch data. Researchers would discard all catch above a 
possession limit or below a minimum size as soon as practicable 
following data collection. The table below lists the anticipated catch 
for the project. No catch would be landed for sale.

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                 Species                   Weight  (lb)    Weight  (kg)
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Scallop.................................          20,000           9,072
Northeast Skate Complex (Barndoor Skate           50,000          22,680
 not included)..........................
Barndoor Skate..........................             250             113
Summer Flounder.........................              90              41
Winter Flounder.........................             250             113
Yellowtail Flounder.....................             750             340
Windowpane Flounder.....................             750             340
Monkfish................................           1,750             794
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Researchers need additional exemptions to deploy dredge gear in 
closed areas in order to help locate large enough aggregations of 
flatfish to test the experimental gear. Participating vessels need crew 
size waivers to accommodate science personnel and possession waivers 
would enable them to conduct data collection activities. We would waive 
the observer program notification requirements because the research 
activity is not representative of standard fishing activity.
    If approved, the applicant may request minor modifications and 
extensions to the EFP throughout the year. EFP modifications and 
extensions may be granted without further notice if they are deemed 
essential to facilitate completion of the proposed research and have 
minimal impacts that do not change the scope or impact of the initially 
approved EFP request. Any fishing activity conducted outside the scope 
of the exempted fishing activity would be prohibited.

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

    Dated: November 7, 2017.
Emily H. Menashes,
Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2017-24520 Filed 11-9-17; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P