Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; General Provisions for Domestic Fisheries; Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery; Applications for Exempted Fishing Permits (EFP), 45224-45225 [2018-19305]

Download as PDF 45224 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 173 / Thursday, September 6, 2018 / Notices Citizen Science Advisory Panel Action Teams. The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold meetings of the following Citizen Science Advisory Panel Action Teams: Finance & Infrastructure; Volunteers; Projects/Topics Management; Data Management; and Communication/ Outreach/Education via webinar. DATES: The Finance & Infrastructure Team meeting will be held on Wednesday, September 26, 2018 at 1 p.m.; Volunteers Team on Thursday, September 27, 2018 at 2 p.m.; Projects/ Topics Management Team will be held on Friday, September 28, 2018 at 10 a.m.; Data Management Team on Monday, October 1, 2018 at 10 a.m.; and Communication/Outreach/Education Team on Wednesday, October 3, 2018 at 2 p.m. Each meeting is scheduled to last approximately 90 minutes. Additional Action Team webinars and plenary webinar dates and times will publish in a subsequent issue in the Federal Register. SUMMARY: daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with NOTICES ADDRESSES: Meeting address: The meetings will be held via webinar and are open to members of the public. Webinar registration is required and registration links will be posted to the Citizen Science program page of the Council’s website at www.safmc.net. Council address: South Atlantic Fishery Management Council, 4055 Faber Place Drive, Suite 201, N. Charleston, SC 29405. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Amber Von Harten, Citizen Science Program Manager, SAFMC; phone: (843) 302–8433 or toll free (866) SAFMC–10; fax: (843) 769–4520; email: amber.vonharten@safmc.net. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Council created a Citizen Science Advisory Panel Pool in June 2017. The Council appointed members of the Citizen Science Advisory Panel Pool to five Action Teams in the areas of Volunteers, Data Management, Projects/ Topics Management, Finance, and Communication/Outreach/Education to develop program policies and operations for the Council’s Citizen Science Program. Each Action Team will meet to continue work on developing recommendations on program policies and operations to be reviewed by the Council’s Citizen Science Committee. Public comment will be accepted at the beginning of the meeting. Items to be addressed during these meetings: VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:56 Sep 05, 2018 Jkt 244001 1. Discuss work on tasks in the Terms of Reference 2. Review the draft Standard Operating Policies and Procedures (SOPPs) for the Program 3. Other Business Special Accommodations These meetings are physically accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for auxiliary aids should be directed to the council office (see ADDRESSES) 3 days prior to the meeting. Note: The times and sequence specified in this agenda are subject to change. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Dated: August 31, 2018. Tracey L. Thompson, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2018–19358 Filed 9–5–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648–XG459 Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; General Provisions for Domestic Fisheries; Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery; Applications for Exempted Fishing Permits (EFP) National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice; request for comments. AGENCY: NMFS announces the receipt of three exempted fishing permit (EFP) applications. NMFS has made a preliminary determination that these EFP applications warrant further consideration. The applications, submitted by the San Francisco Community Fishing Association, Scott Cook, and Real Good Fish, request exemptions from prohibitions to fish for rockfish species in the non-trawl Rockfish Conservation Areas during the 2019–2020 fishing years. All three applicants request to test hook-and-line gear that selectively harvests underutilized, midwater rockfish species while avoiding bottom-dwelling, overfished rockfish species. NMFS requests public comment on these applications. DATES: Comments must be received by October 9, 2018. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments on this document, identified by NOAA– NMFS–2018–0093, by any of the following methods: SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00019 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 • Electronic Submissions: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal. Go to www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D= NOAA-NMFS-2018-0093, click the ‘‘Comment Now!’’ icon, complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments. The EFP applications will be available under Supporting Documents through the same link. • Mail: Submit written comments to Lynn Massey, West Coast Region, NMFS, 501 W. Ocean Blvd., Ste. 4200, Long Beach, CA 90802–4250. • Instructions: Comments must be submitted by one of the above methods to ensure that the comments are received, documented, and considered by NMFS. 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. 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.) submitted voluntarily by the sender will be publicly accessible. Do not submit confidential business information, or otherwise sensitive or protected information. NMFS will accept anonymous comments (enter ‘‘N/A’’ in the required fields if you wish to remain anonymous). FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Lynn Massey, West Coast Region, NMFS, (562) 436–2462, lynn.massey@ noaa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This action is authorized by the Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery Management Plan and the regulations implementing the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act at 50 CFR 600.745, which state that EFPs may be used to authorize fishing activities that would otherwise be prohibited. At its June 2018 meeting, the Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) made its final recommendation to NMFS on three EFP applications. The Council considered the EFP applications concurrently with the 2019–2020 biennial harvest specifications and management process because expected catch under each EFP is included in the catch limits for groundfish stocks. All three EFP applicants request to test hook-and-line gear that selectively targets underutilized, midwater rockfish species (e.g., yellowtail rockfish) while avoiding overfished, bottom-dwelling rockfish species (e.g., yelloweye rockfish). An EFP is necessary for these activities because they will all occur in E:\FR\FM\06SEN1.SGM 06SEN1 daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 173 / Thursday, September 6, 2018 / Notices the non-trawl RCA, which is closed to fishing with non-trawl fixed gear to protect overfished groundfish stocks. A summary of each EFP application is provided below: • Yellowtail Rockfish Jig Fishing for the 2019–2020 Fishing Seasons: The San Francisco Community Fishing Association (SFCFA) and Daniel Platt submitted a renewal request for EFP activities that have been conducted since 2013. This EFP would authorize seven vessels to test the potential for a new commercial jig gear configured to target underutilized, midwater yellowtail and shelf rockfish species while avoiding overfished, bottomdwelling yelloweye and canary rockfish. These EFP activities would take place within the non-trawl RCA off the California coast—specifically between Point Conception and the Oregon/ California border at depths ranging from 35 to 150 fathoms (64 to 274 meters (m)). • Commercial Midwater Hook-andLine Rockfish Fishing in the RCA off the Oregon Coast: Scott Cook of Coos Bay, Oregon submitted an EFP to authorize 3–5 vessels to test a modified, midwater trolled longline gear configured to target underutilized, midwater yellowtail, widow, and canary rockfish while avoiding overfished, bottom-dwelling yelloweye rockfish. Alongside 100 percent observer coverage, this EFP would also test a new electronic monitoring (EM) device tailored to small vessels that are difficult to observe with human observers. These EFP activities will take place within the non-trawl RCA (referred to as Fixed Gear RCA in the EFP application) off the Oregon Coast—specifically in the rocky reef habitat at depths ranging from 30 to 100 fathoms (55 to 183 m). The Council approved this EFP application for final recommendation to NMFS with the understanding that the applicant will: (1) Harvest no more than 5 metric tons (mt) of canary rockfish as opposed to the requested 10 mt; (2) use artificial fishing lures; and, (3) limit the number of hooks per individual line to 40 or less with a maximum of 125 hooks total. The Council recommended the use of artificial fishing lures and a maximum hook limitation in order to minimize potential seabird interactions. • Monterey Bay Regional Exempted Fishing Permit—Chilipepper Rockfish: Real Good Fish of Moss Landing, California submitted an EFP to authorize 5–10 vessels to: (1) Test a trolled hook-and-line gear configured to target underutilized, midwater chilipepper rockfish and avoid overfished, bottom-dwelling yelloweye rockfish; (2) determine areas that are VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:56 Sep 05, 2018 Jkt 244001 abundant with chilipepper rockfish and that correspond to low densities of overfished yelloweye rockfish; and, (3) to test a new EM and vessel monitoring system intended to provide a costeffective alternative to observer coverage on small vessels. These EFP activities will take place in the non-trawl RCA off the California coast—specifically in areas with canyon edges and walls that have historically produced high volumes of chilipepper rockfish catch and at depths ranging from 40 to 150 fathoms (73 to 274 m). During the two-year period of EFP activities from 2019 to 2020, all applicants will adhere to EFP set-asides for targeted and incidental groundfish and other species, which were considered and approved by the Council at their June 2018 meeting. These EFP set-asides are off the top deductions from the 2019–2020 applicable annual catch limits (ACLs), meaning any landings and discards that occur under these EFPs would be accounted for within the applicable ACLs. NMFS does not expect any impacts to the environment, essential fish habitat, or protected or prohibited species from this EFP beyond those analyzed for the groundfish fishery as a whole in applicable biological opinions 1 2 or the draft Environmental Assessment for the Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery 2019– 2020 Harvest Specifications and Management Measures.3 During Council deliberations, Council members expressed concern regarding seabird and canary rockfish impacts from the Scott Cook EFP, and salmon bycatch impacts from all three EFPs. To address seabird concerns, the Council requested modifications to the Scott Cook EFP, which included requiring participating vessels to use artificial fishing lures (as opposed to live bait) and limiting hooks to a maximum of 40 hooks per line with a maximum of 125 hooks total. NMFS will require additional mitigation measures if necessary to ensure that all potential seabird impacts fall within the scope of the 2017 United States Fish and Wildlife Biological Opinion 2 for Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery impacts on seabirds. To address canary rockfish concerns, the Council requested a reduction in the Scott Cook EFP set-aside from 10 mt to 5 mt in order to take a precautionary approach 1 Available at: http://www.westcoast.fisheries. noaa.gov/publications/fishery_management/ groundfish/s7-groundfish-biop-121117.pdf. 2 Available at: http://www.pcouncil.org/wpcontent/uploads/2017/10/F7_Att1_USFWS_2017_ STALBiOp_NOV2017BB.pdf. 3 Draft available at: https://www.pcouncil.org/wpcontent/uploads/2018/06/E4_Supp_REVISEDAtt2_ 2019–20_GFSpexEA_E-Only_June2018BB.pdf. PO 00000 Frm 00020 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 45225 in providing opportunities to target canary rockfish. To address the possibility of salmon bycatch, the Council requested that NMFS consider precautionary limits for bycatch of endangered salmon that may occur during EFP fishing activities. NMFS requested that the applicants estimate their expected bycatch of Chinook and coho salmon, and will present this information at the September 2018 Council meeting. NMFS will request that the Council provide additional input on the proposed salmon bycatch limits or additional considerations for approving these EFPs based on the expected salmon encounter rates and any public comments received during the comment period for the EFPs. The salmon bycatch limits that the Council approves would be counted against the non-whiting salmon bycatch guidelines for Chinook (5,500) and coho (560) salmon bycatch in NMFS’s 2017 Biological Opinion. The terms and conditions of the EFP would state that EFP fishing will cease if vessels reach the expected salmon bycatch levels specified in the EFP. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq., 16 U.S.C. 773 et seq., and 16 U.S.C. 7001 et seq. Dated: August 31, 2018. Margo Schulze-Haugen, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2018–19305 Filed 9–5–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P CORPORATION FOR NATIONAL AND COMMUNITY SERVICE Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Day of Service Project Collection Tool; Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request Corporation for National and Community Service. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: The Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) has submitted a public information collection request (ICR) entitled Day of Service Project Collection Tool for review and approval in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act. DATES: Comments may be submitted, identified by the title of the information collection activity, by October 9, 2018. ADDRESSES: Comments may be submitted, identified by the title of the information collection activity, to the Office of Information and Regulatory SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\06SEN1.SGM 06SEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 173 (Thursday, September 6, 2018)]
[Notices]
[Pages 45224-45225]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-19305]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

RIN 0648-XG459


Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; General Provisions for Domestic 
Fisheries; Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery; Applications for Exempted 
Fishing Permits (EFP)

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

ACTION: Notice; request for comments.

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

SUMMARY: NMFS announces the receipt of three exempted fishing permit 
(EFP) applications. NMFS has made a preliminary determination that 
these EFP applications warrant further consideration. The applications, 
submitted by the San Francisco Community Fishing Association, Scott 
Cook, and Real Good Fish, request exemptions from prohibitions to fish 
for rockfish species in the non-trawl Rockfish Conservation Areas 
during the 2019-2020 fishing years. All three applicants request to 
test hook-and-line gear that selectively harvests underutilized, 
midwater rockfish species while avoiding bottom-dwelling, overfished 
rockfish species. NMFS requests public comment on these applications.

DATES: Comments must be received by October 9, 2018.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments on this document, identified by 
NOAA-NMFS-2018-0093, by any of the following methods:
     Electronic Submissions: Submit all electronic public 
comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal. Go to 
www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-2018-0093, click the 
``Comment Now!'' icon, complete the required fields, and enter or 
attach your comments. The EFP applications will be available under 
Supporting Documents through the same link.
     Mail: Submit written comments to Lynn Massey, West Coast 
Region, NMFS, 501 W. Ocean Blvd., Ste. 4200, Long Beach, CA 90802-4250.
     Instructions: Comments must be submitted by one of the 
above methods to ensure that the comments are received, documented, and 
considered by NMFS. 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. 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.) submitted voluntarily by the 
sender will be publicly accessible. Do not submit confidential business 
information, or otherwise sensitive or protected information. NMFS will 
accept anonymous comments (enter ``N/A'' in the required fields if you 
wish to remain anonymous).

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Lynn Massey, West Coast Region, NMFS, 
(562) 436-2462, [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This action is authorized by the Pacific 
Coast Groundfish Fishery Management Plan and the regulations 
implementing the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management 
Act at 50 CFR 600.745, which state that EFPs may be used to authorize 
fishing activities that would otherwise be prohibited.
    At its June 2018 meeting, the Pacific Fishery Management Council 
(Council) made its final recommendation to NMFS on three EFP 
applications. The Council considered the EFP applications concurrently 
with the 2019-2020 biennial harvest specifications and management 
process because expected catch under each EFP is included in the catch 
limits for groundfish stocks. All three EFP applicants request to test 
hook-and-line gear that selectively targets underutilized, midwater 
rockfish species (e.g., yellowtail rockfish) while avoiding overfished, 
bottom-dwelling rockfish species (e.g., yelloweye rockfish). An EFP is 
necessary for these activities because they will all occur in

[[Page 45225]]

the non-trawl RCA, which is closed to fishing with non-trawl fixed gear 
to protect overfished groundfish stocks. A summary of each EFP 
application is provided below:
     Yellowtail Rockfish Jig Fishing for the 2019-2020 Fishing 
Seasons: The San Francisco Community Fishing Association (SFCFA) and 
Daniel Platt submitted a renewal request for EFP activities that have 
been conducted since 2013. This EFP would authorize seven vessels to 
test the potential for a new commercial jig gear configured to target 
underutilized, midwater yellowtail and shelf rockfish species while 
avoiding overfished, bottom-dwelling yelloweye and canary rockfish. 
These EFP activities would take place within the non-trawl RCA off the 
California coast--specifically between Point Conception and the Oregon/
California border at depths ranging from 35 to 150 fathoms (64 to 274 
meters (m)).
     Commercial Midwater Hook-and-Line Rockfish Fishing in the 
RCA off the Oregon Coast: Scott Cook of Coos Bay, Oregon submitted an 
EFP to authorize 3-5 vessels to test a modified, midwater trolled 
longline gear configured to target underutilized, midwater yellowtail, 
widow, and canary rockfish while avoiding overfished, bottom-dwelling 
yelloweye rockfish. Alongside 100 percent observer coverage, this EFP 
would also test a new electronic monitoring (EM) device tailored to 
small vessels that are difficult to observe with human observers. These 
EFP activities will take place within the non-trawl RCA (referred to as 
Fixed Gear RCA in the EFP application) off the Oregon Coast--
specifically in the rocky reef habitat at depths ranging from 30 to 100 
fathoms (55 to 183 m). The Council approved this EFP application for 
final recommendation to NMFS with the understanding that the applicant 
will: (1) Harvest no more than 5 metric tons (mt) of canary rockfish as 
opposed to the requested 10 mt; (2) use artificial fishing lures; and, 
(3) limit the number of hooks per individual line to 40 or less with a 
maximum of 125 hooks total. The Council recommended the use of 
artificial fishing lures and a maximum hook limitation in order to 
minimize potential seabird interactions.
     Monterey Bay Regional Exempted Fishing Permit--Chilipepper 
Rockfish: Real Good Fish of Moss Landing, California submitted an EFP 
to authorize 5-10 vessels to: (1) Test a trolled hook-and-line gear 
configured to target underutilized, midwater chilipepper rockfish and 
avoid overfished, bottom-dwelling yelloweye rockfish; (2) determine 
areas that are abundant with chilipepper rockfish and that correspond 
to low densities of overfished yelloweye rockfish; and, (3) to test a 
new EM and vessel monitoring system intended to provide a cost-
effective alternative to observer coverage on small vessels. These EFP 
activities will take place in the non-trawl RCA off the California 
coast--specifically in areas with canyon edges and walls that have 
historically produced high volumes of chilipepper rockfish catch and at 
depths ranging from 40 to 150 fathoms (73 to 274 m).
    During the two-year period of EFP activities from 2019 to 2020, all 
applicants will adhere to EFP set-asides for targeted and incidental 
groundfish and other species, which were considered and approved by the 
Council at their June 2018 meeting. These EFP set-asides are off the 
top deductions from the 2019-2020 applicable annual catch limits 
(ACLs), meaning any landings and discards that occur under these EFPs 
would be accounted for within the applicable ACLs.
    NMFS does not expect any impacts to the environment, essential fish 
habitat, or protected or prohibited species from this EFP beyond those 
analyzed for the groundfish fishery as a whole in applicable biological 
opinions 1 2 or the draft Environmental Assessment for the 
Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery 2019-2020 Harvest Specifications and 
Management Measures.\3\ During Council deliberations, Council members 
expressed concern regarding seabird and canary rockfish impacts from 
the Scott Cook EFP, and salmon bycatch impacts from all three EFPs. To 
address seabird concerns, the Council requested modifications to the 
Scott Cook EFP, which included requiring participating vessels to use 
artificial fishing lures (as opposed to live bait) and limiting hooks 
to a maximum of 40 hooks per line with a maximum of 125 hooks total. 
NMFS will require additional mitigation measures if necessary to ensure 
that all potential seabird impacts fall within the scope of the 2017 
United States Fish and Wildlife Biological Opinion \2\ for Pacific 
Coast Groundfish Fishery impacts on seabirds. To address canary 
rockfish concerns, the Council requested a reduction in the Scott Cook 
EFP set-aside from 10 mt to 5 mt in order to take a precautionary 
approach in providing opportunities to target canary rockfish. To 
address the possibility of salmon bycatch, the Council requested that 
NMFS consider precautionary limits for bycatch of endangered salmon 
that may occur during EFP fishing activities. NMFS requested that the 
applicants estimate their expected bycatch of Chinook and coho salmon, 
and will present this information at the September 2018 Council 
meeting. NMFS will request that the Council provide additional input on 
the proposed salmon bycatch limits or additional considerations for 
approving these EFPs based on the expected salmon encounter rates and 
any public comments received during the comment period for the EFPs. 
The salmon bycatch limits that the Council approves would be counted 
against the non-whiting salmon bycatch guidelines for Chinook (5,500) 
and coho (560) salmon bycatch in NMFS's 2017 Biological Opinion. The 
terms and conditions of the EFP would state that EFP fishing will cease 
if vessels reach the expected salmon bycatch levels specified in the 
EFP.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ Available at: http://www.westcoast.fisheries.noaa.gov/publications/fishery_management/groundfish/s7-groundfish-biop-121117.pdf.
    \2\ Available at: http://www.pcouncil.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/F7_Att1_USFWS_2017_STALBiOp_NOV2017BB.pdf.
    \3\ Draft available at: https://www.pcouncil.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/E4_Supp_REVISEDAtt2_2019-20_GFSpexEA_E-Only_June2018BB.pdf.

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq., 16 U.S.C. 773 et seq., and 16 
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
U.S.C. 7001 et seq.

    Dated: August 31, 2018.
Margo Schulze-Haugen,
Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2018-19305 Filed 9-5-18; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P