Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Pacific Cod by Catcher Vessels Less Than 50 Feet Length Overall Using Hook-and-Line Gear in the Central Regulatory Area of the Gulf of Alaska, 62514-62515 [2018-26302]

Download as PDF 62514 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 233 / Tuesday, December 4, 2018 / Rules and Regulations objectives of the 2006 Consolidated HMS FMP and amendments. (§ 635.27(a)(8)(v) and (vi)). Another principal consideration is the objective of providing opportunities to harvest the full annual U.S. BFT quota without exceeding it based on the goals of the 2006 Consolidated HMS FMP and amendments, including to achieve optimum yield on a continuing basis and to optimize the ability of all permit categories to harvest their full BFT quota allocations (related to § 635.27(a)(8)(x)). Based on the considerations above, NMFS is transferring 129.2 mt from the Reserve category to the General category. Therefore, NMFS adjusts the General category December subquota quota to 50.0 mt for the 2018 General category fishing season and adjusts the Reserve category quota to 13.7 mt. The 2018 General category fishery reopens December 1, 2018, and will remain open until December 31, 2018, or until the adjusted General category quota is reached, whichever comes first. Monitoring and Reporting NMFS will continue to monitor the BFT fishery closely. Dealers are required to submit landing reports within 24 hours of a dealer receiving BFT. Late reporting by dealers compromises NMFS’ ability to timely implement actions such as quota and retention limit adjustment, as well as closures, and may result in enforcement actions. Additionally, and separate from the dealer reporting requirement, General and HMS Charter/Headboat category vessel owners are required to report the catch of all BFT retained or discarded dead within 24 hours of the landing(s) or end of each trip, by accessing hmspermits.noaa.gov or by using the HMS Catch Reporting app, or calling (888) 872–8862 (Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.). Depending on the level of fishing effort and catch rates of BFT, NMFS may determine that additional action (e.g., quota adjustment or closure) is necessary to ensure available subquotas are not exceeded or to enhance scientific data collection from, and fishing opportunities in, all geographic areas. If needed, subsequent adjustments will be published in the Federal Register. In addition, fishermen may call the Atlantic Tunas Information Line at (978) 281–9260, or access hmspermits.noaa.gov, for updates on quota monitoring and inseason adjustments. NMFS reminds General category participants that when the fishery reopens December 1, 2018, the BFT General category daily retention limit VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:14 Dec 03, 2018 Jkt 247001 will be one large medium or giant BFT (measuring 73’’ or greater) per vessel per day/trip. Classification The Assistant Administrator for NMFS (AA) finds that it is impracticable and contrary to the public interest to provide prior notice of, and an opportunity for public comment on, this action for the following reasons: The regulations implementing the 2006 Consolidated HMS FMP and amendments provide for inseason retention limit adjustments to respond to the unpredictable nature of BFT availability on the fishing grounds, the migratory nature of this species, and the regional variations in the BFT fishery. Affording prior notice and opportunity for public comment to implement the quota transfer for the remainder of 2018 is impracticable and contrary to the public interest as such a delay would result in continued closure of the General category fishery (because the available quota has been exceeded) and the need to re-open the fishery later in the December time period, rather than the fishery automatically re-opening on December 1. The delay would preclude the fishery from harvesting BFT that are available on the fishing grounds and that might otherwise become unavailable during a delay. Therefore, the AA finds good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) to waive prior notice and the opportunity for public comment. For these reasons, there also is good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553(d) to waive the 30day delay in effectiveness. This action is being taken under § 635.27(a)(9) (Inseason adjustments) and is exempt from review under Executive Order 12866. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 971 et seq. and 1801 et seq. Dated: November 29, 2018. Alan D. Risenhoover, Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2018–26325 Filed 11–29–18; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P PO 00000 Frm 00066 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 679 [Docket No. 170816769–8162–02] RIN 0648–XG470 Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Pacific Cod by Catcher Vessels Less Than 50 Feet Length Overall Using Hook-and-Line Gear in the Central Regulatory Area of the Gulf of Alaska National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Temporary rule; closure. AGENCY: NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for Pacific cod by catcher vessels less than 50 feet length overall (LOA) using hook-and-line gear in the Central Regulatory Area of the Gulf of Alaska (GOA). This action is necessary to prevent exceeding the 2018 Pacific cod total allowable catch apportioned to catcher vessels less than 50 feet LOA using hook-and-line gear in the Central Regulatory Area of the GOA. DATES: Effective 1200 hours, Alaska local time (A.l.t.), December 1, 2018, through 2400 hours, A.l.t., December 31, 2018. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Obren Davis, 907–586–7228. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: NMFS manages the groundfish fishery in the GOA exclusive economic zone according to the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Gulf of Alaska (FMP) prepared by the North Pacific Fishery Management Council under authority of the MagnusonStevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. Regulations governing fishing by U.S. vessels in accordance with the FMP appear at subpart H of 50 CFR part 600 and 50 CFR part 679. Regulations governing sideboard protections for GOA groundfish fisheries appear at subpart B of 50 CFR part 680. The 2018 Pacific cod total allowable catch (TAC) apportioned to catcher vessels less than 50 feet LOA using hook-and-line gear in the Central Regulatory Area of the GOA is 880 metric tons (mt), as established by the final 2018 and 2019 harvest specifications for groundfish of the GOA (83 FR 8768, March 1, 2018). In accordance with § 679.20(d)(1)(i), the Administrator, Alaska Region, NMFS (Regional Administrator) has SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\04DER1.SGM 04DER1 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 233 / Tuesday, December 4, 2018 / Rules and Regulations determined that the 2018 Pacific cod TAC apportioned to catcher vessels less than 50 feet LOA using hook-and-line gear in the Central Regulatory Area of the GOA will soon be reached. Therefore, the Regional Administrator is establishing a directed fishing allowance of 870 mt and is setting aside the remaining 10 mt as bycatch to support other anticipated groundfish fisheries. In accordance with § 679.20(d)(1)(iii), the Regional Administrator finds that this directed fishing allowance has been reached. Consequently, NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for Pacific cod by catcher vessels less than 50 feet LOA using hook-and-line gear in the Central Regulatory Area of the GOA. While this closure is effective the maximum retainable amounts at § 679.20(e) and (f) apply at any time during a trip. VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:14 Dec 03, 2018 Jkt 247001 Classification This action responds to the best available information recently obtained from the fishery. The Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, NOAA (AA), finds good cause to waive the requirement to provide prior notice and opportunity for public comment pursuant to the authority set forth at 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) as such requirement is impracticable and contrary to the public interest. This requirement is impracticable and contrary to the public interest as it would prevent NMFS from responding to the most recent fisheries data in a timely fashion and would delay the directed fishing closure of Pacific cod by catcher vessels less than 50 feet LOA using hook-and-line gear in the Central Regulatory Area of the GOA. NMFS was unable to publish a notice PO 00000 Frm 00067 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 9990 62515 providing time for public comment because the most recent, relevant data only became available as of November 28, 2018. The AA also finds good cause to waive the 30-day delay in the effective date of this action under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3). This finding is based upon the reasons provided above for waiver of prior notice and opportunity for public comment. This action is required by § 679.20 and is exempt from review under Executive Order 12866. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Dated: November 29, 2018. Alan D. Risenhoover, Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2018–26302 Filed 11–29–18; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P E:\FR\FM\04DER1.SGM 04DER1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 233 (Tuesday, December 4, 2018)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 62514-62515]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-26302]


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

DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 679

[Docket No. 170816769-8162-02]
RIN 0648-XG470


Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Pacific Cod 
by Catcher Vessels Less Than 50 Feet Length Overall Using Hook-and-Line 
Gear in the Central Regulatory Area of the Gulf of Alaska

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

ACTION: Temporary rule; closure.

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

SUMMARY: NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for Pacific cod by 
catcher vessels less than 50 feet length overall (LOA) using hook-and-
line gear in the Central Regulatory Area of the Gulf of Alaska (GOA). 
This action is necessary to prevent exceeding the 2018 Pacific cod 
total allowable catch apportioned to catcher vessels less than 50 feet 
LOA using hook-and-line gear in the Central Regulatory Area of the GOA.

DATES: Effective 1200 hours, Alaska local time (A.l.t.), December 1, 
2018, through 2400 hours, A.l.t., December 31, 2018.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Obren Davis, 907-586-7228.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: NMFS manages the groundfish fishery in the 
GOA exclusive economic zone according to the Fishery Management Plan 
for Groundfish of the Gulf of Alaska (FMP) prepared by the North 
Pacific Fishery Management Council under authority of the Magnuson-
Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. Regulations governing 
fishing by U.S. vessels in accordance with the FMP appear at subpart H 
of 50 CFR part 600 and 50 CFR part 679. Regulations governing sideboard 
protections for GOA groundfish fisheries appear at subpart B of 50 CFR 
part 680.
    The 2018 Pacific cod total allowable catch (TAC) apportioned to 
catcher vessels less than 50 feet LOA using hook-and-line gear in the 
Central Regulatory Area of the GOA is 880 metric tons (mt), as 
established by the final 2018 and 2019 harvest specifications for 
groundfish of the GOA (83 FR 8768, March 1, 2018).
    In accordance with Sec.  679.20(d)(1)(i), the Administrator, Alaska 
Region, NMFS (Regional Administrator) has

[[Page 62515]]

determined that the 2018 Pacific cod TAC apportioned to catcher vessels 
less than 50 feet LOA using hook-and-line gear in the Central 
Regulatory Area of the GOA will soon be reached. Therefore, the 
Regional Administrator is establishing a directed fishing allowance of 
870 mt and is setting aside the remaining 10 mt as bycatch to support 
other anticipated groundfish fisheries. In accordance with Sec.  
679.20(d)(1)(iii), the Regional Administrator finds that this directed 
fishing allowance has been reached. Consequently, NMFS is prohibiting 
directed fishing for Pacific cod by catcher vessels less than 50 feet 
LOA using hook-and-line gear in the Central Regulatory Area of the GOA. 
While this closure is effective the maximum retainable amounts at Sec.  
679.20(e) and (f) apply at any time during a trip.

Classification

    This action responds to the best available information recently 
obtained from the fishery. The Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, 
NOAA (AA), finds good cause to waive the requirement to provide prior 
notice and opportunity for public comment pursuant to the authority set 
forth at 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) as such requirement is impracticable and 
contrary to the public interest. This requirement is impracticable and 
contrary to the public interest as it would prevent NMFS from 
responding to the most recent fisheries data in a timely fashion and 
would delay the directed fishing closure of Pacific cod by catcher 
vessels less than 50 feet LOA using hook-and-line gear in the Central 
Regulatory Area of the GOA. NMFS was unable to publish a notice 
providing time for public comment because the most recent, relevant 
data only became available as of November 28, 2018.
    The AA also finds good cause to waive the 30-day delay in the 
effective date of this action under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3). This finding is 
based upon the reasons provided above for waiver of prior notice and 
opportunity for public comment.
    This action is required by Sec.  679.20 and is exempt from review 
under Executive Order 12866.

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

    Dated: November 29, 2018.
Alan D. Risenhoover,
Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries 
Service.
[FR Doc. 2018-26302 Filed 11-29-18; 4:15 pm]
 BILLING CODE 3510-22-P