Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic; 2018 Recreational Accountability Measure and Closure for South Atlantic Red Grouper, 63813 [2018-26897]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 238 / Wednesday, December 12, 2018 / Rules and Regulations remain at 10 percent because the violation rate was lower than 0.5 percent for calendar years 2016 and 2017. The random alcohol violation rates were 0.14 percent for 2016 and 0.16 percent for 2017. Detailed reports on the FTA drug and alcohol testing data collected from transit employers may be obtained from the FTA’s Office of Transit Safety and Oversight, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590, (202) 366–2010 or at https://transit-safety.fta.dot.gov/ DrugAndAlcohol/Publications/ Default.aspx. K. Jane Williams, Acting Administrator. [FR Doc. 2018–26950 Filed 12–11–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 622 [Docket No. 100812345–2142–03] RIN 0648–XG661 Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic; 2018 Recreational Accountability Measure and Closure for South Atlantic Red Grouper National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Temporary rule; closure. AGENCY: NMFS implements accountability measures (AMs) for the red grouper recreational sector in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of the South Atlantic for the 2018 fishing year through this temporary rule. NMFS estimates recreational landings of red grouper in 2018 have exceeded the recreational annual catch limit (ACL). Therefore, NMFS closes the red grouper recreational sector in the South Atlantic EEZ at 12:01 a.m., local time, on December 12, 2018 for the remainder of the 2018 fishing year. This closure is necessary to protect the red grouper resource. DATES: This rule is effective 12:01 a.m., local time, December 12, 2018, until 12:01 a.m., local time, January 1, 2019. amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with RULES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:25 Dec 11, 2018 Jkt 247001 FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Frank Helies, NMFS Southeast Regional Office, telephone: 727–824–5305, email: frank.helies@noaa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The snapper-grouper fishery of the South Atlantic includes red grouper and is managed under the Fishery Management Plan for the SnapperGrouper Fishery of the South Atlantic Region (FMP). The FMP was prepared by the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council and is implemented by NMFS under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act) by regulations at 50 CFR part 622. On July 26, 2018, as a result of the determination that red grouper was undergoing overfishing, NMFS published the final rule for Abbreviated Framework 1 to the FMP in the Federal Register (83 FR 35435). In part, that final rule decreased the recreational ACL for red grouper in the South Atlantic to end overfishing of the stock and set the recreational ACL for the 2018 fishing year at 77,840 lb (35,308 kg), whole weight, as described at § 622.193(d)(2)(ii). In accordance with regulations at 50 CFR 622.193(d)(2)(i) for the recreational sector, if recreational landings of red grouper are projected to reach the recreational ACL, the Assistant Administrator for NOAA Fisheries (AA) will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year. Recent landings data from the NMFS Southeast Fisheries Science Center indicate that the red grouper recreational ACL for 2018 has been exceeded. Therefore, this temporary rule implements the AM to close the red grouper recreational sector of the snapper-grouper fishery for the remainder of the 2018 fishing year. As a result, the recreational sector for red grouper in the South Atlantic EEZ will be closed effective 12:01 a.m., local time December 12, 2018 through December 31, 2018. NMFS notes that while the 2019 fishing year begins on January 1, as described at § 622.183(b)(1), the commercial and recreational harvest of red grouper is prohibited annually from January through April of each year. Therefore, the recreational sector for red grouper will reopen on May 1, 2019, the PO 00000 Frm 00039 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 9990 63813 beginning of the recreational fishing season. The recreational ACL for 2019 is 84,000 lb (38,102 kg), whole weight, as described at § 622.193(d)(2)(ii). Classification The Regional Administrator for the NMFS Southeast Region has determined this temporary rule is necessary for the conservation and management of South Atlantic red grouper and is consistent with the Magnuson-Stevens Act and other applicable laws. This action is taken under 50 CFR 622.193(d)(2)(i) and is exempt from review under Executive Order 12866. These measures are exempt from the procedures of the Regulatory Flexibility Act because the temporary rule is issued without opportunity for prior notice and comment. This action responds to the best scientific information available. The AA finds that the need to immediately implement this action to close the recreational sector for red grouper constitutes good cause to waive the requirements to provide prior notice and opportunity for public comment on this temporary rule pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B), because such procedures are unnecessary and contrary to the public interest. Such procedures are unnecessary because the AMs implementing the recreational closure have already been subject to notice and comment. All that remains is to notify the public of the recreational closure for red grouper for the remainder of the 2018 fishing year. Prior notice and opportunity for comment are contrary to the public interest because of the need to immediately implement this action to protect the red grouper resource. Time required for notice and public comment would allow for continued recreational harvest and further exceedance of the recreational ACL. For the aforementioned reasons, the AA also finds good cause to waive the 30-day delay in the effectiveness of this action under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3). Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Dated: December 7, 2018. Karen H. Abrams, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2018–26897 Filed 12–7–18; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P E:\FR\FM\12DER1.SGM 12DER1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 238 (Wednesday, December 12, 2018)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Page 63813]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-26897]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 622

[Docket No. 100812345-2142-03]
RIN 0648-XG661


Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic; 2018 Recreational 
Accountability Measure and Closure for South Atlantic Red Grouper

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

ACTION: Temporary rule; closure.

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SUMMARY: NMFS implements accountability measures (AMs) for the red 
grouper recreational sector in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of the 
South Atlantic for the 2018 fishing year through this temporary rule. 
NMFS estimates recreational landings of red grouper in 2018 have 
exceeded the recreational annual catch limit (ACL). Therefore, NMFS 
closes the red grouper recreational sector in the South Atlantic EEZ at 
12:01 a.m., local time, on December 12, 2018 for the remainder of the 
2018 fishing year. This closure is necessary to protect the red grouper 
resource.

DATES: This rule is effective 12:01 a.m., local time, December 12, 
2018, until 12:01 a.m., local time, January 1, 2019.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Frank Helies, NMFS Southeast Regional 
Office, telephone: 727-824-5305, email: [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The snapper-grouper fishery of the South 
Atlantic includes red grouper and is managed under the Fishery 
Management Plan for the Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic 
Region (FMP). The FMP was prepared by the South Atlantic Fishery 
Management Council and is implemented by NMFS under the authority of 
the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-
Stevens Act) by regulations at 50 CFR part 622.
    On July 26, 2018, as a result of the determination that red grouper 
was undergoing overfishing, NMFS published the final rule for 
Abbreviated Framework 1 to the FMP in the Federal Register (83 FR 
35435). In part, that final rule decreased the recreational ACL for red 
grouper in the South Atlantic to end overfishing of the stock and set 
the recreational ACL for the 2018 fishing year at 77,840 lb (35,308 
kg), whole weight, as described at Sec.  622.193(d)(2)(ii). In 
accordance with regulations at 50 CFR 622.193(d)(2)(i) for the 
recreational sector, if recreational landings of red grouper are 
projected to reach the recreational ACL, the Assistant Administrator 
for NOAA Fisheries (AA) will file a notification with the Office of the 
Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of 
the fishing year. Recent landings data from the NMFS Southeast 
Fisheries Science Center indicate that the red grouper recreational ACL 
for 2018 has been exceeded. Therefore, this temporary rule implements 
the AM to close the red grouper recreational sector of the snapper-
grouper fishery for the remainder of the 2018 fishing year. As a 
result, the recreational sector for red grouper in the South Atlantic 
EEZ will be closed effective 12:01 a.m., local time December 12, 2018 
through December 31, 2018.
    NMFS notes that while the 2019 fishing year begins on January 1, as 
described at Sec.  622.183(b)(1), the commercial and recreational 
harvest of red grouper is prohibited annually from January through 
April of each year. Therefore, the recreational sector for red grouper 
will reopen on May 1, 2019, the beginning of the recreational fishing 
season. The recreational ACL for 2019 is 84,000 lb (38,102 kg), whole 
weight, as described at Sec.  622.193(d)(2)(ii).

Classification

    The Regional Administrator for the NMFS Southeast Region has 
determined this temporary rule is necessary for the conservation and 
management of South Atlantic red grouper and is consistent with the 
Magnuson-Stevens Act and other applicable laws.
    This action is taken under 50 CFR 622.193(d)(2)(i) and is exempt 
from review under Executive Order 12866.
    These measures are exempt from the procedures of the Regulatory 
Flexibility Act because the temporary rule is issued without 
opportunity for prior notice and comment.
    This action responds to the best scientific information available. 
The AA finds that the need to immediately implement this action to 
close the recreational sector for red grouper constitutes good cause to 
waive the requirements to provide prior notice and opportunity for 
public comment on this temporary rule pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B), 
because such procedures are unnecessary and contrary to the public 
interest. Such procedures are unnecessary because the AMs implementing 
the recreational closure have already been subject to notice and 
comment. All that remains is to notify the public of the recreational 
closure for red grouper for the remainder of the 2018 fishing year. 
Prior notice and opportunity for comment are contrary to the public 
interest because of the need to immediately implement this action to 
protect the red grouper resource. Time required for notice and public 
comment would allow for continued recreational harvest and further 
exceedance of the recreational ACL.
    For the aforementioned reasons, the AA also finds good cause to 
waive the 30-day delay in the effectiveness of this action under 5 
U.S.C. 553(d)(3).

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

    Dated: December 7, 2018.
Karen H. Abrams,
Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2018-26897 Filed 12-7-18; 4:15 pm]
 BILLING CODE 3510-22-P