Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; General Provisions for Domestic Fisheries; Application for Exempted Fishing Permit, 11728-11729 [2018-05334]

Download as PDF 11728 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 52 / Friday, March 16, 2018 / Notices FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Thomas A. Nies, Executive Director, New England Fishery Management Council; telephone: (978) 465–0492. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The meeting was previously scheduled for 1:30 to 4 p.m. It will now begin at 1 p.m. and end at 4 p.m. The original notice published in the Federal Register on March 12, 2018 (83 FR 10678). All other previously published information remains unchanged. Special Accommodations This meeting is physically accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids should be directed to Thomas A. Nies, Executive Director, at (978) 465–0492, at least 5 days prior to the meeting date. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Dated: March 13, 2018. Jeffrey N. Lonergan, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2018–05397 Filed 3–15–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648–XG091 Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; General Provisions for Domestic Fisheries; Application for Exempted Fishing Permit National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and AGENCY: Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice; request for comments. The Assistant Regional Administrator for Sustainable Fisheries, Greater Atlantic Region, NMFS, has made a preliminary determination that an Exempted Fishing Permit application submitted by the Northeast Fisheries Science Center contains all of the required information and warrants further consideration. This Exempted Fishing Permit would exempt participating vessels from the following types of fishery regulations: Minimum fish size restrictions; fish possession limits; and, in limited situations for research purposes only, retaining and landing prohibited fish species. Regulations under the MagnusonStevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act require publication of this notice to provide interested parties the opportunity to comment on Exempted Fishing Permit applications. DATES: Comments must be received on or before April 2, 2018. ADDRESSES: You may submit written comments by either of the following methods: • Email: nmfs.gar.efp@noaa.gov. Include in the subject line ‘‘Comments on NEFSC Study Fleet EFP.’’ • Mail: Michael Pentony, Regional Administrator, NMFS, Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office, 55 Great Republic Drive, Gloucester, MA 01930. Mark the outside of the envelope ‘‘Comments on NEFSC Study Fleet EFP.’’ FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Spencer Talmage, Fishery Management SUMMARY: Specialist, 978–281–9232, Spencer.Talmage@noaa.gov. The Northeast Fisheries Science Center submitted a complete application for an Exempted Fishing Permit (EFP) on February 9, 2018, for the 2018 Study Fleet Program. The EFP would exempt 31 commercial fishing vessels from the minimum size and possession limits for species of interest, as well as allow temporary retention of species that will be discarded. The Center established the Study Fleet Program in 2002 to more fully characterize commercial fishing operations and provide sampling opportunities to augment NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service’s data collection programs. Partnership with the commercial fishing industry allows the Center to provide samples for stock assessment and fish biology research when traditional sampling sources might otherwise be unavailable. Table 1 includes all of the regulations specified at 50 CFR part 648 that participating vessels would be exempt from for at-sea sampling, or when retaining and landing fish for research purposes. The exemptions listed in Table 1 are necessary for contracted vessels to acquire the biological samples needed to meet Center research objectives. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: TABLE 1—SPECIFIC REGULATIONS COVERED BY THE PROPOSED EXEMPTED FISHING PERMIT NEFSC Study Fleet Program EFP daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with NOTICES Number of Vessels ....................................................................... Exempted regulations in 50 CFR part 648 ................................... Any fish retained under the EFP would be delivered to Center staff upon VerDate Sep<11>2014 21:54 Mar 15, 2018 Jkt 244001 31. Size limits: § 648.83 NE multispecies minimum sizes. § 648.93 Monkfish minimum fish size. § 648.147 Black sea bass minimum fish size. Possession restrictions: § 648.86(a) Haddock. § 648.86(b) Atlantic cod. § 648.86(c) Atlantic halibut. § 648.86(d) Small-mesh multispecies. § 648.86(l) Zero retention of Atlantic wolffish and windowpane flounder. § 648.86(o) Possession limits implemented by Regional Administrator. § 648.94 Monkfish possession limit. § 648.322 Skate possession and landing restrictions. § 648.145 Black sea bass possession limits. § 648.92(b)(2)(i) Prohibition from landing NE multispecies on monkfish-only day-at-sea. § 648.293 Golden tilefish. landing. Additionally, prior to landing, the Center would issue a formal PO 00000 Frm 00060 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Biological Sampling Request to the vessel to retain fish for the Study Fleet E:\FR\FM\16MRN1.SGM 16MRN1 11729 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 52 / Friday, March 16, 2018 / Notices Program. This would ensure that the landed fish do not exceed any collection needs of the Study Fleet Program, as detailed below in Table 2. All catch would be attributed to the appropriate commercial fishing quota. For a vessel fishing on a groundfish sector trip, all catch of groundfish stocks allocated to sectors would be deducted from its sector’s Annual Catch Entitlement (ACE). Once the ACE for a stock has been reached in a sector, vessels would no longer be allowed to fish in that stock area unless the sector acquires additional ACE for the stock in question. For common pool vessels, all groundfish catch would be counted toward the appropriate trimester total allowable catch (TAC). Common pool vessels would be exempt from possession and trip limits, but would still be subject to trimester TAC closures. Vessels fishing under this EFP would be required to report via their Vessel Monitoring System (VMS) or the Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system to identify trips that would be landing species below minimum size limits and/ or in excess of possession limits. Vessels not landing fish for the Center but temporarily possessing fish for at-sea sampling would not be required to call into the IVR system or report via VMS. TABLE 2—STUDY FLEET PROGRAM’S BIOLOGICAL SAMPLE COLLECTION NEEDS Species Stock area * Gear types # Collection frequency Individual fish per collection period Maximum weight allowed per trip (lb) Windowpane flounder. Monkfish ................. GOM, GB ............ OTF, DRS ........... Monthly ................ 40 ea./mo ............ 30 ........................ 360 GOM, GB, SNE ... OTF, GNS, DRS Monthly ................ 750 ...................... 9,000 Haddock ................. GOM, GB, SNE ... Monthly/Seasonal 320 ...................... 1600 Atlantic cod ............ GOM, GB, SNE ... Monthly ................ 120 ea./mo .......... 270 ...................... 7,200 Barndoor skate ...... Thorny skate .......... Black sea bass ...... Atlantic wolffish ...... Cusk ....................... Atlantic halibut ....... Butterfish ................ Blueline tilefish ....... Golden tilefish ........ Atlantic herring ....... GOM, GB, SNE ... GOM, GB, SNE ... GB, SNE ............. GOM, GB ............ GOM, GB ............ GOM, GB ............ SNE, MA ............. SNE, MA ............. SNE, MA ............. Any Area ............. Quarterly ............. Quarterly ............. Monthly ................ Monthly ................ Monthly ................ Monthly ................ Monthly ................ Monthly ................ Monthly ................ Monthly ................ 20 ea./qtr ............. 20 ea./qtr ............. 30 ea./mo ............ 40 ea./mo ............ 40 ea./mo ............ 20 ea./mo ............ 150 ea./mo .......... 20 ea./mo ............ 20 ea./mo ............ 100 ea./mo .......... 150 ...................... 150 ...................... 180 ...................... 160 ...................... 140 ...................... 500 ...................... 75 ........................ 100 ...................... 150 ...................... 100 ...................... 600 600 2,160 3,500 3,600 6,000 900 1,200 1,800 1,200 River herring/shad Any Area ............. Monthly ................ Any Area ............. Monthly ................ 100 ea./mo of ea. species. 100 ea./mo .......... 100 of ea. species Round herring ........ 100 ...................... 1,200 of ea. species 1,200 Silver hake ............. Any Area ............. Monthly ................ 100 ea./mo .......... 260 ...................... 3,120 Atlantic mackerel ... Any Area ............. Monthly ................ 100 ea./mo .......... 260 ...................... 3,120 Shortfin squid ......... Sand lance ............. Any Area ............. Any Area ............. Monthly ................ Monthly ................ 100 ea./mo .......... 100 ea./mo .......... 75 ........................ 25 ........................ 900 300 Longfin squid ......... Any Area ............. OTF, LLB, GNS, DRS. OTF, LLB, GNS, DRS. OTF, GNS, DRS OTF, GNS, DRS PTF, OTF ............ OTF,GNS, LLB .... OTF,GNS, LLB .... OTF, GNS, LLB .. OTM .................... LLB ...................... LLB ...................... OTM, OTF, PTM, PUR. OTM, OTF, PTM, PUR. OTM, OTF, PTM, PUR. OTM, OTF, PTM, PUR. OTM, OTF, PTM, HND, PUR. OTM, OTF ........... OTM, OTF, PTM, PUR. OTM, OTF ........... 15 ea./mo. SNE .. 15 ea./mo. GOM 40 ea./mo ............ Monthly ................ 100 ea./mo .......... 75 ........................ 900 Maximum allowance (lb) daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with NOTICES * Stock area abbreviations: Gulf of Maine (GOM), Georges Bank (GB), Southern New England (SNE). # Gear abbreviations: Otter trawl (OTF), bottom longline (LLB), sink gillnet (GNS), sea scallop dredge (DRS), fish pot (PTF), hand lines, auto jig (HND), purse seine (PUR), otter trawl midwater (OTM), pair trawl midwater (PTM). If approved, the NEFSC 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 impact that does not change the scope of the initially approved EFP request. Any fishing activity conducted outside the scope of the exempted fishing activity would be prohibited. Dated: March 12, 2018. Emily H. Menashes, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE [FR Doc. 2018–05334 Filed 3–15–18; 8:45 am] RIN 0648–XG002 BILLING CODE 3510–22–P Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Exempted Fishing Permits National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice of receipt of an application for exempted fishing permit; request for comments. AGENCY: Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. VerDate Sep<11>2014 21:54 Mar 15, 2018 Jkt 244001 PO 00000 National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Frm 00061 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\16MRN1.SGM 16MRN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 52 (Friday, March 16, 2018)]
[Notices]
[Pages 11728-11729]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-05334]


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

DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

RIN 0648-XG091


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

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 submitted by 
the Northeast Fisheries Science Center contains all of the required 
information and warrants further consideration. This Exempted Fishing 
Permit would exempt participating vessels from the following types of 
fishery regulations: Minimum fish size restrictions; fish possession 
limits; and, in limited situations for research purposes only, 
retaining and landing prohibited fish species. Regulations under the 
Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act require 
publication of this notice to provide interested parties the 
opportunity to comment on Exempted Fishing Permit applications.

DATES: Comments must be received on or before April 2, 2018.

ADDRESSES: You may submit written comments by either of the following 
methods:
     Email: [email protected]. Include in the subject line 
``Comments on NEFSC Study Fleet EFP.''
     Mail: Michael Pentony, Regional Administrator, NMFS, 
Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office, 55 Great Republic Drive, 
Gloucester, MA 01930. Mark the outside of the envelope ``Comments on 
NEFSC Study Fleet EFP.''

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Spencer Talmage, Fishery Management 
Specialist, 978-281-9232, [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Northeast Fisheries Science Center 
submitted a complete application for an Exempted Fishing Permit (EFP) 
on February 9, 2018, for the 2018 Study Fleet Program. The EFP would 
exempt 31 commercial fishing vessels from the minimum size and 
possession limits for species of interest, as well as allow temporary 
retention of species that will be discarded.
    The Center established the Study Fleet Program in 2002 to more 
fully characterize commercial fishing operations and provide sampling 
opportunities to augment NOAA's National Marine Fisheries Service's 
data collection programs. Partnership with the commercial fishing 
industry allows the Center to provide samples for stock assessment and 
fish biology research when traditional sampling sources might otherwise 
be unavailable. Table 1 includes all of the regulations specified at 50 
CFR part 648 that participating vessels would be exempt from for at-sea 
sampling, or when retaining and landing fish for research purposes. The 
exemptions listed in Table 1 are necessary for contracted vessels to 
acquire the biological samples needed to meet Center research 
objectives.

 Table 1--Specific Regulations Covered by the Proposed Exempted Fishing
                                 Permit
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                         NEFSC Study Fleet Program EFP
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Number of Vessels....................  31.
Exempted regulations in 50 CFR part    Size limits:
 648.
                                       Sec.   648.83 NE multispecies
                                        minimum sizes.
                                       Sec.   648.93 Monkfish minimum
                                        fish size.
                                       Sec.   648.147 Black sea bass
                                        minimum fish size.
                                       Possession restrictions:
                                       Sec.   648.86(a) Haddock.
                                       Sec.   648.86(b) Atlantic cod.
                                       Sec.   648.86(c) Atlantic
                                        halibut.
                                       Sec.   648.86(d) Small-mesh
                                        multispecies.
                                       Sec.   648.86(l) Zero retention
                                        of Atlantic wolffish and
                                        windowpane flounder.
                                       Sec.   648.86(o) Possession
                                        limits implemented by Regional
                                        Administrator.
                                       Sec.   648.94 Monkfish possession
                                        limit.
                                       Sec.   648.322 Skate possession
                                        and landing restrictions.
                                       Sec.   648.145 Black sea bass
                                        possession limits.
                                       Sec.   648.92(b)(2)(i)
                                        Prohibition from landing NE
                                        multispecies on monkfish-only
                                        day-at-sea.
                                       Sec.   648.293 Golden tilefish.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Any fish retained under the EFP would be delivered to Center staff 
upon landing. Additionally, prior to landing, the Center would issue a 
formal Biological Sampling Request to the vessel to retain fish for the 
Study Fleet

[[Page 11729]]

Program. This would ensure that the landed fish do not exceed any 
collection needs of the Study Fleet Program, as detailed below in Table 
2.
    All catch would be attributed to the appropriate commercial fishing 
quota. For a vessel fishing on a groundfish sector trip, all catch of 
groundfish stocks allocated to sectors would be deducted from its 
sector's Annual Catch Entitlement (ACE). Once the ACE for a stock has 
been reached in a sector, vessels would no longer be allowed to fish in 
that stock area unless the sector acquires additional ACE for the stock 
in question. For common pool vessels, all groundfish catch would be 
counted toward the appropriate trimester total allowable catch (TAC). 
Common pool vessels would be exempt from possession and trip limits, 
but would still be subject to trimester TAC closures.
    Vessels fishing under this EFP would be required to report via 
their Vessel Monitoring System (VMS) or the Interactive Voice Response 
(IVR) system to identify trips that would be landing species below 
minimum size limits and/or in excess of possession limits. Vessels not 
landing fish for the Center but temporarily possessing fish for at-sea 
sampling would not be required to call into the IVR system or report 
via VMS.

                                            Table 2--Study Fleet Program's Biological Sample Collection Needs
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                Individual fish     Maximum weight
             Species                 Stock area *        Gear types #         Collection        per collection     allowed per trip    Maximum allowance
                                                                               frequency            period               (lb)                (lb)
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Windowpane flounder.............  GOM, GB...........  OTF, DRS..........  Monthly...........  40 ea./mo.........  30................  360
Monkfish........................  GOM, GB, SNE......  OTF, GNS, DRS.....  Monthly...........  15 ea./mo. SNE....  750...............  9,000
                                                                                              15 ea./mo. GOM....
Haddock.........................  GOM, GB, SNE......  OTF, LLB, GNS, DRS  Monthly/Seasonal..  40 ea./mo.........  320...............  1600
Atlantic cod....................  GOM, GB, SNE......  OTF, LLB, GNS, DRS  Monthly...........  120 ea./mo........  270...............  7,200
Barndoor skate..................  GOM, GB, SNE......  OTF, GNS, DRS.....  Quarterly.........  20 ea./qtr........  150...............  600
Thorny skate....................  GOM, GB, SNE......  OTF, GNS, DRS.....  Quarterly.........  20 ea./qtr........  150...............  600
Black sea bass..................  GB, SNE...........  PTF, OTF..........  Monthly...........  30 ea./mo.........  180...............  2,160
Atlantic wolffish...............  GOM, GB...........  OTF,GNS, LLB......  Monthly...........  40 ea./mo.........  160...............  3,500
Cusk............................  GOM, GB...........  OTF,GNS, LLB......  Monthly...........  40 ea./mo.........  140...............  3,600
Atlantic halibut................  GOM, GB...........  OTF, GNS, LLB.....  Monthly...........  20 ea./mo.........  500...............  6,000
Butterfish......................  SNE, MA...........  OTM...............  Monthly...........  150 ea./mo........  75................  900
Blueline tilefish...............  SNE, MA...........  LLB...............  Monthly...........  20 ea./mo.........  100...............  1,200
Golden tilefish.................  SNE, MA...........  LLB...............  Monthly...........  20 ea./mo.........  150...............  1,800
Atlantic herring................  Any Area..........  OTM, OTF, PTM, PUR  Monthly...........  100 ea./mo........  100...............  1,200
River herring/shad..............  Any Area..........  OTM, OTF, PTM, PUR  Monthly...........  100 ea./mo of ea.   100 of ea. species  1,200 of ea.
                                                                                               species.                                species
Round herring...................  Any Area..........  OTM, OTF, PTM, PUR  Monthly...........  100 ea./mo........  100...............  1,200
Silver hake.....................  Any Area..........  OTM, OTF, PTM, PUR  Monthly...........  100 ea./mo........  260...............  3,120
Atlantic mackerel...............  Any Area..........  OTM, OTF, PTM,      Monthly...........  100 ea./mo........  260...............  3,120
                                                       HND, PUR.
Shortfin squid..................  Any Area..........  OTM, OTF..........  Monthly...........  100 ea./mo........  75................  900
Sand lance......................  Any Area..........  OTM, OTF, PTM, PUR  Monthly...........  100 ea./mo........  25................  300
Longfin squid...................  Any Area..........  OTM, OTF..........  Monthly...........  100 ea./mo........  75................  900
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
* Stock area abbreviations: Gulf of Maine (GOM), Georges Bank (GB), Southern New England (SNE).
# Gear abbreviations: Otter trawl (OTF), bottom longline (LLB), sink gillnet (GNS), sea scallop dredge (DRS), fish pot (PTF), hand lines, auto jig
  (HND), purse seine (PUR), otter trawl midwater (OTM), pair trawl midwater (PTM).

    If approved, the NEFSC 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 impact that does not change the scope 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: March 12, 2018.
Emily H. Menashes,
Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2018-05334 Filed 3-15-18; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 3510-22-P