Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Reallocation of Pacific Cod in the Western Regulatory Area of the Gulf of Alaska, 65108-65109 [2018-27438]

Download as PDF 65108 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 243 / Wednesday, December 19, 2018 / Rules and Regulations amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with RULES overall (LOA) using hook-and-line or pot gear in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands management area (BSAI). This action is necessary to prevent exceeding the 2018 Pacific cod total allowable catch allocated to catcher vessels less than 60 feet (18.3 m) LOA using hookand-line or pot gear in the BSAI. DATES: Effective 1200 hours, Alaska local time (A.l.t.), December 15, 2018, through 2400 hours, A.l.t., December 31, 2018. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Josh Keaton, 907–586–7228. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: NMFS manages the groundfish fishery in the BSAI exclusive economic zone according to the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area (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. The 2018 Pacific cod total allowable catch (TAC) allocated to catcher vessels less than 60 feet (18.3 m) LOA using hook-and-line or pot gear in the BSAI is 8,748 metric tons (mt) as established by the final 2018 and 2019 harvest specifications for groundfish in the BSAI (83 FR 8365, February 27, 2018), and reallocations (83 FR 2932, January 22, 2018, 83 FR 42227, August 21, 2018, and 83 FR 56740, November 14, 2018). In accordance with § 679.20(d)(1)(iii), the Administrator, Alaska Region, NMFS (Regional Administrator), has determined that the 2018 Pacific cod TAC allocated as a directed fishing allowance to catcher vessels less than 60 feet (18.3 m) LOA using hook-and-line or pot gear in the BSAI will soon be reached. Consequently, NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for Pacific cod by catcher vessels less than 60 feet (18.3 m) LOA using hook-and-line or pot gear in the BSAI. While this closure is effective the maximum retainable amounts at § 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 VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:29 Dec 18, 2018 Jkt 247001 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 closure of directed fishing for Pacific cod by catcher vessels less than 60 feet (18.3 m) LOA using hook-andline or pot gear in the BSAI. NMFS was unable to publish a notice providing time for public comment because the most recent, relevant data only became available as of December 13, 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. National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Temporary rule; reallocation. 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. The 2018 Pacific cod TAC apportioned to catcher vessels using trawl gear in the Western Regulatory Area of the GOA is 2,140 metric tons (mt), as established by the final 2018 and 2019 harvest specifications for groundfish of the GOA (83 FR 8768, March 1, 2018). The Administrator, Alaska Region, NMFS, (Regional Administrator) has determined that catcher vessels using trawl gear will not be able to harvest 725 mt of the 2018 Pacific cod TAC allocated to those vessels under § 679.20(a)(12)(i)(A)(3). In accordance with § 679.20(a)(12)(ii)(B), the Regional Administrator has also determined that catcher vessels using hook-and-line gear, vessels using jig gear, and vessels using pot gear currently have the capacity to harvest this excess allocation. Therefore, NMFS apportions 725 mt of Pacific cod from the trawl catcher vessel apportionment to catcher vessels using hook-and-line gear, vessels using jig gear, and vessels using pot gear in the Western Regulatory Area of the GOA. The harvest specifications for Pacific cod in the Western Regulatory Area of the GOA included in the final 2018 and 2019 harvest specifications for groundfish of the GOA (83 FR 8768, March 1, 2018) are revised as follows: 1,415 mt to catcher vessels using trawl gear, 85 mt to vessels using hook-andline gear, 125 mt to vessels using jig gear, and 2,795 mt to vessels using pot gear. NMFS is reallocating the projected unused amounts of Pacific cod total allowable catch (TAC) from catcher vessels using trawl gear to catcher vessels using hook-and-line gear, vessels using jig gear, and vessels using pot gear in the Western Regulatory Area of the Gulf of Alaska (GOA). This action is necessary to allow the 2018 TAC of Pacific cod in the Western Regulatory Area of the GOA to be harvested. DATES: Effective December 14, 2018 through 2400 hours, Alaska local time (A.l.t.), December 31, 2018. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Josh Keaton, 907–586–7228. 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 Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Dated: December 14, 2018. Karen H. Abrams, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2018–27439 Filed 12–14–18; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 679 [Docket No. 170816769–8162–02] RIN 0648–XG676 Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Reallocation of Pacific Cod in the Western Regulatory Area of the Gulf of Alaska AGENCY: SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00034 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: E:\FR\FM\19DER1.SGM 19DER1 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 243 / Wednesday, December 19, 2018 / Rules and Regulations amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with RULES delay the reallocations of Pacific cod in the Western Regulatory Area of the GOA. Since the fishery is currently open, it is important to immediately inform the industry as to the revised allocations. Immediate notification is necessary to allow for the orderly conduct and efficient operation of this fishery, to allow the industry to plan for the fishing season, and to avoid potential disruption to the fishing fleet VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:29 Dec 18, 2018 Jkt 247001 as well as processors. NMFS was unable to publish a notice providing time for public comment because the most recent, relevant data only became available as of December 11, 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. PO 00000 Frm 00035 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 9990 65109 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: December 14, 2018. Karen H. Abrams, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2018–27438 Filed 12–14–18; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P E:\FR\FM\19DER1.SGM 19DER1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 243 (Wednesday, December 19, 2018)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 65108-65109]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-27438]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 679

[Docket No. 170816769-8162-02]
RIN 0648-XG676


Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Reallocation 
of Pacific Cod in the Western Regulatory Area of the Gulf of Alaska

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

ACTION: Temporary rule; reallocation.

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SUMMARY: NMFS is reallocating the projected unused amounts of Pacific 
cod total allowable catch (TAC) from catcher vessels using trawl gear 
to catcher vessels using hook-and-line gear, vessels using jig gear, 
and vessels using pot gear in the Western Regulatory Area of the Gulf 
of Alaska (GOA). This action is necessary to allow the 2018 TAC of 
Pacific cod in the Western Regulatory Area of the GOA to be harvested.

DATES: Effective December 14, 2018 through 2400 hours, Alaska local 
time (A.l.t.), December 31, 2018.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Josh Keaton, 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.
    The 2018 Pacific cod TAC apportioned to catcher vessels using trawl 
gear in the Western Regulatory Area of the GOA is 2,140 metric tons 
(mt), as established by the final 2018 and 2019 harvest specifications 
for groundfish of the GOA (83 FR 8768, March 1, 2018). The 
Administrator, Alaska Region, NMFS, (Regional Administrator) has 
determined that catcher vessels using trawl gear will not be able to 
harvest 725 mt of the 2018 Pacific cod TAC allocated to those vessels 
under Sec.  679.20(a)(12)(i)(A)(3).
    In accordance with Sec.  679.20(a)(12)(ii)(B), the Regional 
Administrator has also determined that catcher vessels using hook-and-
line gear, vessels using jig gear, and vessels using pot gear currently 
have the capacity to harvest this excess allocation. Therefore, NMFS 
apportions 725 mt of Pacific cod from the trawl catcher vessel 
apportionment to catcher vessels using hook-and-line gear, vessels 
using jig gear, and vessels using pot gear in the Western Regulatory 
Area of the GOA.
    The harvest specifications for Pacific cod in the Western 
Regulatory Area of the GOA included in the final 2018 and 2019 harvest 
specifications for groundfish of the GOA (83 FR 8768, March 1, 2018) 
are revised as follows: 1,415 mt to catcher vessels using trawl gear, 
85 mt to vessels using hook-and-line gear, 125 mt to vessels using jig 
gear, and 2,795 mt to vessels using pot gear.

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

[[Page 65109]]

delay the reallocations of Pacific cod in the Western Regulatory Area 
of the GOA. Since the fishery is currently open, it is important to 
immediately inform the industry as to the revised allocations. 
Immediate notification is necessary to allow for the orderly conduct 
and efficient operation of this fishery, to allow the industry to plan 
for the fishing season, and to avoid potential disruption to the 
fishing fleet as well as processors. NMFS was unable to publish a 
notice providing time for public comment because the most recent, 
relevant data only became available as of December 11, 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: December 14, 2018.
Karen H. Abrams,
Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2018-27438 Filed 12-14-18; 4:15 pm]
 BILLING CODE 3510-22-P