Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery; Closure of the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area to General Category Individual Fishing Quota Scallop Vessels, 67142 [2018-28247]

Download as PDF 67142 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 248 / Friday, December 28, 2018 / Rules and Regulations 553(d) to waive the 30-day 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: December 21, 2018. Karen H. Abrams, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2018–28336 Filed 12–21–18; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 648 [Docket No. 180202111–8353–02] RIN 0648–XG690 Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery; Closure of the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area to General Category Individual Fishing Quota Scallop Vessels National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Temporary rule; closure. AGENCY: NMFS announces that the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area is closed to Limited Access General Category Individual Fishing Quota scallop vessels for the remainder of the 2018 fishing year. No vessel issued a Limited Access General Category Individual Fishing Quota permit may fish for, possess, or land scallops from the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area. Regulations require this action once it is projected that 100 percent of trips allocated to the Limited Access General Category Individual Fishing Quota scallop vessels for the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area will be taken. DATES: Effective 0001 hr local time, December 24, 2018, through March 31, 2019. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Shannah Jaburek, Fishery Management Specialist, (978) 282–8456. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Regulations governing fishing activity in the Sea Scallop Access Areas can be found in 50 CFR 648.59 and 648.60. These regulations authorize vessels issued a valid Limited Access General Category (LAGC) Individual Fishing amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with RULES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:02 Dec 27, 2018 Jkt 247001 Quota (IFQ) scallop permit to fish in the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area under specific conditions, including a total of 1,142 trips that may be taken during the 2018 fishing year. Section 648.59(g)(3)(iii) requires the MidAtlantic Scallop Access Area to be closed to LAGC IFQ permitted vessels for the remainder of the fishing year once the NMFS Greater Atlantic Regional Administrator determines that the allocated number of trips for fishing year 2018 are projected to be taken. Based on trip declarations by LAGC IFQ scallop vessels fishing in the MidAtlantic Scallop Access Area, analysis of fishing effort, and other information, NMFS projects that 1,142 trips will be taken as of December 24, 2018. Therefore, in accordance with § 648.59(g)(3)(iii), NMFS is closing the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area to all LAGC IFQ scallop vessels as of December 24, 2018. No vessel issued an LAGC IFQ permit may fish for, possess, or land scallops in or from the MidAtlantic Scallop Access Area after 0001 local time, December 24, 2018. Any LAGC IFQ vessel that has declared into the Mid-Atlantic Access Area scallop fishery, complied with all trip notification and observer requirements, and crossed the VMS demarcation line on the way to the area before 0001, December 24, 2018, may complete its trip without being subject to this closure. This closure is in effect for the remainder of the 2018 scallop fishing year, through March 31, 2019. Classification This action is required by 50 CFR part 648 and is exempt from review under Executive Order 12866. NMFS finds good cause under to 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) to waive prior notice and the opportunity for public comment because it would be contrary to the public interest and impracticable. The Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area opened for the 2018 fishing year on April 19, 2018. The regulations at § 648.59(g)(3)(iii) require this closure to ensure that LAGC IFQ scallop vessels do not take more than their allocated number of trips in the area. The projected date on which the LAGC IFQ fleet will have taken all of its allocated trips in an Access Area becomes apparent only as trips into the area occur on a real-time basis and as activity trends begin to appear. As a result, NMFS can only make an accurate projection very close in time to when the fleet has taken all of its trips. To allow LAGC IFQ scallop vessels to continue to take trips in the MidAtlantic Scallop Access Area during the period necessary to publish and receive PO 00000 Frm 00110 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 comments on a proposed rule would likely result in the vessels taking much more than the allowed number of trips in the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area. Excessive trips and harvest from the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area would result in excessive fishing effort in the area, where effort controls are critical, thereby undermining conservation objectives of the Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery Management Plan and requiring more restrictive future management measures. Also, the public had prior notice and full opportunity to comment on this closure process when it was enacted For these same reasons, NMFS further finds, under to 5 U.S.C 553(d)(3), good cause to waive the 30day delayed effectiveness period. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Dated: December 21, 2018. Karen H. Abrams, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2018–28247 Filed 12–21–18; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 648 [Docket No. 170828822–70999–02] RIN 0648–XG692 Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Summer Flounder Fishery; 2018 Commercial Quota Harvested for the State of Rhode Island National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Temporary rule; closure. AGENCY: NMFS announces that the 2018 summer flounder commercial quota allocated to the state of Rhode Island has been harvested. Vessels issued a commercial Federal permit for the summer flounder fishery may not land summer flounder in Rhode Island for the remainder of calendar year 2018, unless additional quota becomes available through a transfer from another state. Regulations governing the summer flounder fishery require publication of this notice to advise Rhode Island that the quota has been harvested, and to advise vessel and dealer permit holders that no Federal commercial quota is available to land summer flounder in Rhode Island. DATES: Effective 0001 hours, December 29, 2018, through December 31, 2018. SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\28DER1.SGM 28DER1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 248 (Friday, December 28, 2018)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Page 67142]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-28247]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 648

[Docket No. 180202111-8353-02]
RIN 0648-XG690


Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Sea Scallop 
Fishery; Closure of the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area to General 
Category Individual Fishing Quota Scallop Vessels

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

ACTION: Temporary rule; closure.

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SUMMARY: NMFS announces that the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area is 
closed to Limited Access General Category Individual Fishing Quota 
scallop vessels for the remainder of the 2018 fishing year. No vessel 
issued a Limited Access General Category Individual Fishing Quota 
permit may fish for, possess, or land scallops from the Mid-Atlantic 
Scallop Access Area. Regulations require this action once it is 
projected that 100 percent of trips allocated to the Limited Access 
General Category Individual Fishing Quota scallop vessels for the Mid-
Atlantic Scallop Access Area will be taken.

DATES: Effective 0001 hr local time, December 24, 2018, through March 
31, 2019.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Shannah Jaburek, Fishery Management 
Specialist, (978) 282-8456.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Regulations governing fishing activity in 
the Sea Scallop Access Areas can be found in 50 CFR 648.59 and 648.60. 
These regulations authorize vessels issued a valid Limited Access 
General Category (LAGC) Individual Fishing Quota (IFQ) scallop permit 
to fish in the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area under specific 
conditions, including a total of 1,142 trips that may be taken during 
the 2018 fishing year. Section 648.59(g)(3)(iii) requires the Mid-
Atlantic Scallop Access Area to be closed to LAGC IFQ permitted vessels 
for the remainder of the fishing year once the NMFS Greater Atlantic 
Regional Administrator determines that the allocated number of trips 
for fishing year 2018 are projected to be taken.
    Based on trip declarations by LAGC IFQ scallop vessels fishing in 
the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area, analysis of fishing effort, and 
other information, NMFS projects that 1,142 trips will be taken as of 
December 24, 2018. Therefore, in accordance with Sec.  
648.59(g)(3)(iii), NMFS is closing the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area 
to all LAGC IFQ scallop vessels as of December 24, 2018. No vessel 
issued an LAGC IFQ permit may fish for, possess, or land scallops in or 
from the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area after 0001 local time, 
December 24, 2018. Any LAGC IFQ vessel that has declared into the Mid-
Atlantic Access Area scallop fishery, complied with all trip 
notification and observer requirements, and crossed the VMS demarcation 
line on the way to the area before 0001, December 24, 2018, may 
complete its trip without being subject to this closure. This closure 
is in effect for the remainder of the 2018 scallop fishing year, 
through March 31, 2019.

Classification

    This action is required by 50 CFR part 648 and is exempt from 
review under Executive Order 12866. NMFS finds good cause under to 5 
U.S.C. 553(b)(B) to waive prior notice and the opportunity for public 
comment because it would be contrary to the public interest and 
impracticable. The Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area opened for the 2018 
fishing year on April 19, 2018. The regulations at Sec.  
648.59(g)(3)(iii) require this closure to ensure that LAGC IFQ scallop 
vessels do not take more than their allocated number of trips in the 
area. The projected date on which the LAGC IFQ fleet will have taken 
all of its allocated trips in an Access Area becomes apparent only as 
trips into the area occur on a real-time basis and as activity trends 
begin to appear. As a result, NMFS can only make an accurate projection 
very close in time to when the fleet has taken all of its trips. To 
allow LAGC IFQ scallop vessels to continue to take trips in the Mid-
Atlantic Scallop Access Area during the period necessary to publish and 
receive comments on a proposed rule would likely result in the vessels 
taking much more than the allowed number of trips in the Mid-Atlantic 
Scallop Access Area. Excessive trips and harvest from the Mid-Atlantic 
Scallop Access Area would result in excessive fishing effort in the 
area, where effort controls are critical, thereby undermining 
conservation objectives of the Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery Management 
Plan and requiring more restrictive future management measures. Also, 
the public had prior notice and full opportunity to comment on this 
closure process when it was enacted For these same reasons, NMFS 
further finds, under to 5 U.S.C 553(d)(3), good cause to waive the 30-
day delayed effectiveness period.

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

    Dated: December 21, 2018.
Karen H. Abrams,
Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2018-28247 Filed 12-21-18; 4:15 pm]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P