Fisheries Off West Coast States; West Coast Salmon Fisheries; 2019 Management Measures, 19729-19742 [2019-09064]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 87 / Monday, May 6, 2019 / Rules and Regulations DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 660 [Docket No. 180702602–9400–01] RIN 0648–BI05 Fisheries Off West Coast States; West Coast Salmon Fisheries; 2019 Management Measures National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Final rule. AGENCY: Through this final rule, NMFS establishes fishery management measures for the 2019 ocean salmon fisheries off Washington, Oregon, and California and the 2020 salmon seasons opening earlier than May 1, 2020. Specific fishery management measures vary by fishery and by area, and establish fishing areas, seasons, quotas, legal gear, recreational fishing days and catch limits, possession and landing restrictions, and minimum lengths for salmon taken in the U.S. exclusive economic zone (EEZ) (3–200 nautical miles (nmi)) off Washington, Oregon, and California. The management measures are intended to prevent overfishing and to apportion the ocean harvest equitably among treaty Indian, non-treaty commercial, and recreational fisheries. The measures are also intended to allow a portion of the salmon runs to escape the ocean fisheries in order to provide for spawning escapement and to provide fishing opportunity for inside fisheries (fisheries occurring in state internal waters). SUMMARY: This final rule is effective from 0001 hours Pacific Daylight Time, May 6, 2019, until the effective date of the 2020 management measures, which NOAA will publish in the Federal Register. DATES: The documents cited in this document are available on the Pacific Fishery Management Council’s (Council’s) website (www.pcouncil.org). FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Peggy Mundy at 206–526–4323. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: jbell on DSK3GLQ082PROD with RULES ADDRESSES: Background The ocean salmon fisheries in the EEZ off Washington, Oregon, and California are managed under a ‘‘framework’’ FMP. Regulations at 50 CFR part 660, subpart H, provide the mechanism for making VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:48 May 03, 2019 Jkt 247001 preseason and inseason adjustments to the management measures, within limits set by the FMP, by notification in the Federal Register. 50 CFR 660.408, in addition to the FMP, governs the establishment of annual management measures. The management measures for the 2019 and pre-May 2020 ocean salmon fisheries that are implemented in this final rule were recommended by the Council at its April 9 to 16, 2019, meeting. Process Used To Establish 2019 Management Measures The Council announced its annual preseason management process for the 2019 ocean salmon fisheries in the Federal Register on February 11, 2019 (84 FR 3145), and on the Council’s website at www.pcouncil.org. NMFS published an additional notice of opportunities to submit public comments on the 2019 ocean salmon fisheries in the Federal Register on February 14, 2019 (84 FR 4049). These notices announced the availability of Council documents, the dates and locations of Council meetings and public hearings comprising the Council’s complete schedule of events for determining the annual proposed and final modifications to ocean salmon fishery management measures, and instructions on how to comment on the development of the 2019 ocean salmon fisheries. The agendas for the March and April Council meetings were published in the Federal Register (84 FR 3763, February 13, 2019, and 84 FR 5421, February 21, 2019, respectively) and posted on the Council’s website prior to the actual meetings. In accordance with the FMP, the Council’s Salmon Technical Team (STT) and staff economist prepared four reports for the Council, its advisors, and the public. All four reports were made available on the Council’s website upon their completion. The first of the reports, ‘‘Review of 2018 Ocean Salmon Fisheries,’’ was prepared in February when the first increment of scientific information necessary for crafting management measures for the 2019 and pre-May 2020 ocean salmon fisheries became available. The first report summarizes biological and socioeconomic data for the 2018 ocean salmon fisheries and assesses the performance of the fisheries with respect to the Council’s 2018 management objectives as well as providing historical information for comparison. The second report, ‘‘Preseason Report I Stock Abundance Analysis and Environmental Assessment Part 1 for 2019 Ocean PO 00000 Frm 00031 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 19729 Salmon Fishery Regulations’’ (PRE I), provides the 2019 salmon stock abundance projections and analyzes the impacts on the stocks and Council management goals if the 2018 regulations and regulatory procedures were applied to the projected 2019 stock abundances. The completion of PRE I is the initial step in developing and evaluating the full suite of preseason alternatives. Following completion of the first two reports, the Council met in Vancouver, WA, from March 6 to 12, 2019, to develop 2019 management alternatives for proposal to the public. The Council proposed three alternatives for commercial, recreational, and treaty Indian fisheries management for analysis and public comment. These alternatives consisted of various combinations of management measures designed to ensure that stocks of coho and Chinook salmon meet conservation goals, and to provide for ocean harvests of more abundant stocks. After the March Council meeting, the Council’s STT and staff economist prepared a third report, ‘‘Preseason Report II Proposed Alternatives and Environmental Assessment Part 2 for 2019 Ocean Salmon Fishery Regulations’’ (PRE II), which analyzes the effects of the proposed 2019 management alternatives. The Council sponsored public hearings to receive testimony on the proposed alternatives on March 25, 2019, in Westport, WA, and Coos Bay, OR; and on March 26, 2019, in Ukiah, CA. The States of Washington, Oregon, and California sponsored meetings in various fora that also collected public testimony, which was then presented to the Council by each state’s Council representative. The Council also received public testimony at both the March and April meetings and received written comments at the Council office and electronic submissions via the Council’s electronic portal. The Council met from April 9 to 16, 2019, in Rohnert Park, CA, to adopt its final 2019 salmon management recommendations. Following the April Council meeting, the Council’s STT and staff economist prepared a fourth report, ‘‘Preseason Report III Analysis of Council-Adopted Management Measures for 2019 Ocean Salmon Fisheries’’ (PRE III), which analyzes the environmental and socio-economic effects of the Council’s final recommendations. After the Council took final action on the annual ocean salmon specifications in April, it transmitted the recommended management measures to NMFS, published them in its newsletter, and E:\FR\FM\06MYR1.SGM 06MYR1 19730 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 87 / Monday, May 6, 2019 / Rules and Regulations posted them on the Council website (www.pcouncil.org). The annual salmon management cycle begins May 1 and continues through April 30 of the following year. This final rule is effective on May 6, rather than the traditional May 1 date, because the April Council meeting in 2019 occurred too late to allow NMFS to review, approve, and implement the Council’s recommended management measures by May 1. The rule implementing the salmon fishery management measures in 2018 was effective until the effective date of this 2019 rule (84 FR 19005, May 1, 2018). The majority of fisheries recommended by the Council for 2019 begin after May 6, 2019, the effective date for this rule. Fisheries scheduled to begin before May 6, 2019, under the Council’s recommended management measures are the commercial and recreational fisheries in the Monterey area (Pigeon Point to U.S./Mexico Border); recreational fisheries between Cape Falcon, OR, and the Oregon/ California Border; and treaty Indian troll fisheries. For purposes of analyzing the impacts of these fisheries on individual stocks relative to the applicable objectives in the FMP, Council analysts assumed fisheries prior to May 6, 2019, would be conducted under the 2018 management measures for the May 1 to May 6 time period, consistent with the effective date of the 2018 salmon management measures rule. National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) The environmental assessment (EA) for this action comprises the Council’s documents described above (PRE I, PRE II, and PRE III), providing analysis of environmental and socioeconomic effects under NEPA. The EA and its related Finding of No Significant Impact are posted on the NMFS West Coast Region website (www.westcoast.fisheries.noaa.gov). Resource Status jbell on DSK3GLQ082PROD with RULES Stocks of Concern The FMP requires that the fisheries be shaped to meet escapement-based Annual Catch Limits (ACLs), Endangered Species Act (ESA) consultation requirements, obligations of the Pacific Salmon Treaty (PST) between the U.S. and Canada, and other conservation objectives detailed in the FMP. Because the ocean salmon fisheries are mixed-stock fisheries, this requires ‘‘weak stock’’ management to avoid exceeding limits for the stocks with the most constraining limits. Abundance forecasts for individual salmon stocks can vary significantly VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:48 May 03, 2019 Jkt 247001 from one year to the next; therefore, the stocks that constrain the fishery in one year may differ from those that constrain the fishery in the next. For 2019, limits for five stocks are the most constraining on the fisheries; these are described below. Fisheries south of Cape Falcon, OR, are limited in 2019 primarily by conservation concerns for Klamath River fall-run Chinook salmon (KRFC), Sacramento River fall-run Chinook salmon (SRFC), and ESA conservation requirements for California Coastal Chinook salmon (CCC). Both KRFC and SRFC stocks were determined in 2018 to be overfished, and the Council is developing rebuilding plans intended to be implemented in 2020. Fisheries north of Cape Falcon are limited primarily to meet ESA conservation requirements for Puget Sound Chinook salmon. Meeting ocean escapement objectives for Upper Columbia River summer-run Chinook salmon will further constrain fisheries north and south of Cape Falcon. The limitations imposed in order to protect these stocks are described below. The alternatives and the Council’s recommended management measures for 2019 were designed to avoid exceeding these limitations. The Queets, Juan de Fuca, and Snohomish coho stocks were determined in 2018 to be overfished, and the Council is developing rebuilding plans for these stocks, intended to be implemented in 2020; meeting conservation objectives for these three stocks will not constrain fisheries in 2019. Klamath River fall-run Chinook salmon (KRFC): Abundance for this nonESA-listed stock in recent years has been historically low, and the stock is currently overfished based on spawning escapement in 2015, 2016, and 2017. The FMP defines ‘‘overfished’’ status in terms of a three-year geometric mean escapement level and whether it is below the minimum stock size threshold. Forecast abundance for KRFC has improved since the record low in 2017, and in 2019 fisheries will be managed to meet the FMP conservation objective, a maximum sustainable yield spawning escapement goal (SMSY) of 40,700 natural area spawners. Fisheries south of Cape Falcon, particularly in the Klamath Management Zone (KMZ) from Humbug Mountain, OR to Humboldt South Jetty, CA, will be somewhat constrained to meet this goal, but less so than in 2017 when there was a complete closure of commercial and recreational ocean salmon fishing in the KMZ. Sacramento River fall-run Chinook salmon (SRFC): SRFC is not an ESAlisted stock; however, abundance for this stock in recent years has been low PO 00000 Frm 00032 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 compared with its conservation objective and this stock is currently overfished based on spawning escapement in 2015, 2016, and 2017. The abundance forecast for SRFC in 2019 is somewhat higher than in the previous three years. However, preseason abundance forecasts for SRFC have tended to be optimistic and exploitation rates underestimated in recent years, when compared to postseason abundance estimates. For example, during the period 2014 through 2018, the preseason abundance forecast for SRFC was, on average, 33 percent higher than the post season abundance estimate, and preseason exploitation rate forecasts averaged 32 percent lower than the postseason exploitation rate estimates. In order to be conservative given the frequent upward bias in the abundance forecasts, underestimation of exploitation rates, and the fact that SRFC are overfished, the Council has recommended fisheries to achieve a spawning escapement of 160,000 which is toward the higher end of the FMP Conservation Objective range (122,000 to 180,000 natural and hatchery adult spawners). Meeting this risk averse spawning escapement goal will constrain fisheries south of Cape Falcon in 2019, but should provide increased fishing opportunity and economic benefit to many fishery dependent communities in Oregon and California when compared to recent years. Upper Columbia River summer-run Chinook salmon: Abundance forecast of this non-ESA-listed stock in 2019 is 35,900, which is less than half of the average for the past decade, 78,000 (2009–2018). Fisheries north and south of Cape Falcon will be somewhat constrained in 2019 to meet the ocean escapement objective set under the 2018 U.S. v. Oregon Management Agreement. California Coastal Chinook salmon (CCC)—ESA-listed Threatened: In 2000, NMFS consulted under ESA section 7 on the effects of the ocean salmon fishing conducted in accordance with the FMP on the California Coastal Chinook salmon Evolutionarily Significant Unit (ESU). NMFS concluded in a biological opinion dated April 28, 2000, that these fisheries would jeopardize the continued existence of CCC and provided a reasonable and prudent alternative (RPA) that included limiting annual harvest impacts on age-four KRFC to no more than 16 percent, as a surrogate for CCC. NMFS re-initiated consultation in 2005, and reaffirmed the 2000 RPA; therefore, the 16 percent impact rate on age-four KRFC remains in place as an RPA under ESA section 7. Meeting this E:\FR\FM\06MYR1.SGM 06MYR1 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 87 / Monday, May 6, 2019 / Rules and Regulations impact rate in 2019 will constrain fisheries south of Cape Falcon, particularly in the KMZ from Humbug Mountain, OR to Humboldt South Jetty, CA. Puget Sound Chinook—ESA-listed Threatened: Impacts on threatened Puget Sound Chinook from Councilmanaged fisheries are addressed through a 2004 biological opinion. Generally, these impacts are quite low and within the range contemplated in the 2004 opinion. However, because Puget Sound Chinook are also impacted by fisheries in Puget Sound and associated freshwater fisheries (collectively referred to as ‘‘inside’’ fisheries), the Council and NMFS usually consider the impacts of Councilarea and inside fisheries on Puget Sound Chinook together, and they base their analysis of the combined fishery impacts on a package of Puget Sound fisheries to which the State of Washington and Indian tribes with treaty rights to fish in Puget Sound have agreed through a negotiation process that runs concurrent with the Council’s salmon season planning process. In 2019, fisheries north of Cape Falcon will be constrained to avoid jeopardy to the Puget Sound Chinook salmon ESU, when combined with inside fisheries. jbell on DSK3GLQ082PROD with RULES Other Resource Issues The Southern Resident Killer Whale distinct population segment (SRKW) is listed under the Endangered Species Act as endangered (70 FR 69903, November 18, 2005). NMFS issued a biological opinion analyzing the effects of the ocean salmon fisheries on SRKW in 2009; the opinion concluded that these fisheries are not likely to jeopardize SRKW. Since the 2009 biological opinion was issued, there has been considerable research on the status of SRKW and the importance of the availability of Chinook salmon, their primary prey, to their survival and recovery. NMFS reinitiated consultation on the effects of the ocean salmon fisheries to SRKW on April 12, 2019. To inform the new consultation, the Council formed an ad hoc workgroup including salmon and SRKW experts at its April 2019 meeting and endorsed a schedule for the workgroup culminating in final Council action for adoption of a preferred alternative recommendation on the fishery assessment and any conservation measure(s) or management tool(s) to address the impacts of the fishery to SRKW in November 2019. NMFS would expect to complete the reinitiated consultation in time to inform the 2020 management measures for the fisheries. VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:48 May 03, 2019 Jkt 247001 Pending completion of the reinitiated consultation, NMFS assessed the potential effects of the 2019 fisheries on SRKW and reported on that assessment at the April Council meeting. The assessment included consideration of all information currently available relating to the impacts of the alternatives the Council was considering for the 2019 ocean salmon fisheries on the overall abundance of Chinook salmon available to SRKW, and specifically on Chinook salmon stocks designated as draft priority stocks for SRKW prey purposes in a 2018 report prepared by NMFS and the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife. For the assessment, salmon abundance was ranked in ‘‘quartiles’’ of low, middle, and high abundance compared with a 25-year retrospective time period, 1992 through 2016. The assessment determined that the 2019 preseason overall coastal and inland Chinook salmon abundance is likely to fall within the middle range of abundance, when compared to the period 1992 through 2016. The assessment also evaluated fishery reductions in Chinook salmon abundance and estimated that the recommended 2019 management measure would fall in the middle range when compared to 1992 through 2016. Abundance forecasts in 2019 for 14 of 16 priority prey Chinook salmon stocks contributing to Council-area salmon fisheries are in the middle or upper quartiles of abundance when compared to the period 1992 through 2016. Although two priority stocks (Lower Columbia River and Upper Willamette spring-run Chinook salmon) are anticipated to have low abundance in 2019 relative to previous years, these stocks are minor contributors to the catch of PFMC ocean salmon fisheries, and we do not anticipate the 2019 Council-area salmon fisheries would substantially reduce the availability of those priority Chinook prey stocks to SRKW. Furthermore, the overall forecast composition in 2019 contains a higher proportion of Chinook salmon stocks that are considered to be higher priority than the average composition in the retrospective time period (1992 through 2016). Based on that assessment, NMFS made a determination that, consistent with sections 7(a)(2) and 7(d) of the ESA, this action will not jeopardize any listed species, would not adversely modify designated critical habitat, and will not result in any irreversible or irretrievable commitment of resources that would have the effect of foreclosing the formulation or implementation of any reasonable and prudent alternative measures (NMFS 2019). PO 00000 Frm 00033 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 19731 Prior to and during the March Council meeting, the Hoopa Valley Tribe, which has salmon fishing rights on the Klamath River, objected to a change to the model input the Council’s Salmon Technical Team started using in 2018 to estimate the impacts of ocean fisheries to Southern Oregon/Northern California Coast coho (SONCC coho). The SONCC coho ESU is listed as threatened under the ESA (62 FR 24588, May 6, 1997). In 1999, NMFS consulted on the effects to SONCC coho, and other ESA-listed salmon ESUs, from implementing the Salmon FMP. In our biological opinion, we determined that the fisheries were likely to jeopardize the continued existence of the SONCC coho salmon ESU and developed an RPA that requires fisheries management measures developed under the Salmon FMP achieve an ocean exploitation rate on Rogue/Klamath coho salmon (the indicator for the SONCC coho ESU) of no more than 13 percent. The Tribe submitted comments to NMFS and the Council process, alleging that the change to the model input was inappropriate and triggered reinitiation of consultation. NMFS West Coast Region has responded in writing to the Tribe, and in the Council record, that it does not agree that the change to the model input triggered reinitiation of consultation (Thom 2019). Further, we believe the new model input is consistent with the best available scientific information and allows for more accurate assessment of fishery impacts to SONCC coho. The Council’s recommended management measures for 2019 meet the RPA requirements for SONCC coho. Annual Catch Limits and Status Determination Criteria Annual Catch Limits (ACLs) are set for two Chinook salmon stocks, SRFC and KRFC, and one coho stock, Willapa Bay natural coho. The Chinook salmon stocks are indicator stocks for the Central Valley Fall Chinook complex and the Southern Oregon/Northern California Chinook complex, respectively. The Far North Migrating Coastal Chinook complex includes a group of Chinook salmon stocks that are caught primarily in fisheries north of Cape Falcon, Oregon, and other fisheries that occur north of the U.S./Canada border. No ACL is set for these stocks because they are managed subject to provisions of the PST between the U.S. and Canada. Other Chinook salmon stocks caught in fisheries north of Cape Falcon are ESA-listed or hatchery produced, and are managed consistent with ESA consultations or hatchery goals. Willapa Bay natural coho is the E:\FR\FM\06MYR1.SGM 06MYR1 jbell on DSK3GLQ082PROD with RULES 19732 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 87 / Monday, May 6, 2019 / Rules and Regulations only coho stock for which an ACL is set, as the other coho stocks in the FMP are either ESA-listed, hatchery produced, or managed under the PST. ACLs for salmon stocks are escapement-based, which means they establish a number of adults that must escape the fisheries to return to the spawning grounds. ACLs are set based on the annual potential spawner abundance forecast and a fishing rate reduced to account for scientific uncertainty. For SRFC in 2019, the overfishing limit (OFL) is SOFL = 379,632 (potential spawner abundance forecast) multiplied by 1¥FMSY (1¥0.78) or 83,519 returning spawners (FMSY is the fishing mortality rate that would result in maximum sustainable yield—MSY). SABC is 379,632 multiplied by 1¥FABC (1¥0.70) (FMSY reduced for scientific uncertainty = 0.70) or 113,890. The SACL is set equal to SABC, i.e., 113,890 spawners. The adopted management measures provide for a projected SRFC spawning escapement of 160,159. For KRFC in 2019, SOFL is 87,893 (potential spawner abundance forecast) multiplied by 1¥FMSY (1¥0.71), or 25,489 returning spawners. SABC is 87,893 multiplied by 1¥FABC (1¥0.68) (FMSY reduced for scientific uncertainty = 0.68) or 28,126 returning spawners. SACL is set equal to SABC, i.e., 28,126 spawners. The adopted management measures provide for a projected KRFC spawning escapement of 40,700. For Willapa Bay natural coho in 2019, SOFL = 91,843 (potential spawner abundance forecast) multiplied by 1¥FMSY (1¥0.74) or 23,879 returning spawners. SABC is 91,843 multiplied by 1¥FABC (1¥0.70) (FMSY reduced for scientific uncertainty = 0.70) or 27,553. SACL is set equal to SABC, i.e., 27,553 spawners. The adopted management measures provide for a projected Willapa Bay natural coho ocean escapement of 56,300. In summary, for 2019, projected abundance of the three stocks with ACLs (SRFC, KRFC, and Willapa Bay natural coho), in combination with the constraints for ESA-listed and non-ESAlisted stocks, are expected to result in escapements greater than required to meet the ACLs for all three stocks with defined ACLs. As explained in more detail above under ‘‘Stocks of Concern,’’ fisheries north and south of Cape Falcon are constrained by impact limits necessary to protect ESA-listed salmon stocks including CCC and Puget Sound Chinook salmon, to meet conservation objectives for non-listed KRFC and SRFC, and to meet the ocean escapement objective for non-listed Upper Columbia River Summer VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:48 May 03, 2019 Jkt 247001 Chinook. For KRFC and SRFC, FMP conservation objectives provide for higher escapement than 2019 ACLs. Public Comments The Council invited written comments on developing 2019 salmon management measures in their notice announcing public meetings and hearings (84 FR 3145, February 11, 2019). At its March meeting, the Council adopted three alternatives for 2019 salmon management measures having a range of quotas, season structure, and impacts, from the least restrictive in Alternative I to the most restrictive in Alternative III. These alternatives are described in detail in PRE II. Subsequently, comments were taken at three public hearings held in March, staffed by representatives of the Council and NMFS. The Council received 152 written comments on 2019 ocean salmon fisheries via their electronic portal and an additional 3,142 comments related to salmon management and SRKW. The three public hearings were attended by a total of 106 people; 43 people provided oral comments. Comments came from individual fishers, fishing associations, fish buyers, and processors. Written and oral comments addressed the 2019 management alternatives described in PRE II, and generally expressed preferences for a specific alternative or for particular season structures as well as concern over economic impacts of restricting fisheries for conservation of weak stocks. All comments were included in the Council’s briefing book for their April 2019 meeting and were considered by the Council, which includes a representative from NMFS, in developing the recommended management measures transmitted to NMFS on April 24, 2019. In addition to comments collected at the public hearings and those submitted directly to the Council, several people provided oral comments at the April 2019 Council meeting. NMFS also invited comments to be submitted directly to the Council or to NMFS, via the Federal Rulemaking Portal (www.regulations.gov) in a notice (84 FR 4049, February 14, 2019). Comments on alternatives for fisheries north of Cape Falcon. For fisheries north of Cape Falcon, Alternative I was favored by most commercial and recreational fishery commenters at the public hearing in Westport, WA. A variety of specific comments were made on a variety topics such as season lengths and landing restrictions. The Council adopted an alternative that is within the range of the alternatives considered. PO 00000 Frm 00034 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 Comments on alternatives for fisheries south of Cape Falcon. Comments on the alternatives for fisheries south of Cape Falcon tended to support a blend of Alternatives I and II. The importance of economic impacts to fishers and their communities was mentioned in several comments. Two people testified at the Council’s April meeting on their support for the commercial Point Reyes to Point San Pedro (Fall Area Target Zone) fishery in Alternative I. Public comment was also provided at the April meeting supporting a fishery regime that would result in a spawning escapement for SRFC of 160,000. The Council adopted an alternative within the range of alternatives considered, including the Fall Area Target Zone fishery and a spawning escapement for SRFC of 160,000. Comments on incidental halibut retention in the commercial salmon fisheries. At its March meeting, the Council identified three alternatives for landing limits for incidentally caught halibut that are retained in the salmon troll fishery. The alternatives included: (1) A range of trip limits for halibut possession and landing, (2) two alternatives for the ratio of halibut to Chinook salmon landed in a trip, and (3) the number of halibut that could be retained prior to catching any Chinook salmon. There were few comments received on the halibut alternatives, focused on ensuring the fishery was managed to allow access to the entire IPHC allocation. The Council adopted an alternative for incidental halibut retention that is within the range of the alternatives considered. Comments from federally recognized tribes, including treaty tribe representatives. At its March and April meetings, the Council heard testimony from members of several federally recognized tribes including tribes with treaty rights for salmon harvest; additional comments were submitted in writing. There was strong concern expressed by all tribal representatives about environmental conditions that are deleterious to salmon survival. Comments were also made regarding predation on salmonids by pinnipeds and double-crested cormorants, especially in the Columbia River and the importance of providing salmon passage above dams on the Upper Columbia River. Comments on SRKW. At the Westport public hearing, the April Council meeting, and through electronic submissions, there were comments in favor of 2019 ocean salmon management that increases the abundance and availability of Chinook salmon for SRKW, including the recommendation E:\FR\FM\06MYR1.SGM 06MYR1 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 87 / Monday, May 6, 2019 / Rules and Regulations jbell on DSK3GLQ082PROD with RULES of providing a specific allocation of Chinook salmon for the whales. After considering information provided by NMFS on the potential effects of the 2019 fishery alternatives to SRKW, the Council recommended management measures that do not provide additional measures to ensure prey abundance beyond what is needed to ensure all limits and objectives required for salmon stocks are met. The Council, including the NMFS representative, took all of these comments into consideration. The Council’s final recommendation generally includes aspects of all three alternatives, while taking into account the best available scientific information and ensuring that fisheries are consistent with impact limits for ESA– listed stocks, ACLs, PST obligations, other ESA requirements, and tribal fishing rights. Management Measures The Council’s recommended ocean harvest levels and management measures for the 2019 fisheries are designed to apportion the burden of protecting the weak stocks identified and discussed in PRE I equitably among ocean fisheries and to allow maximum harvest of natural and hatchery runs surplus to inside fishery and spawning needs. NMFS finds the Council’s recommendations to be responsive to the goals of the FMP, the requirements of the resource, and the socioeconomic factors affecting resource users. The recommendations are consistent with the requirements of the MSA, U.S. obligations to Indian tribes with federally recognized fishing rights, and U.S. international obligations regarding Pacific salmon. The Council’s recommended management measures are consistent with the proposed actions analyzed in NMFS’ ESA consultations for those ESA-listed salmon species that may be affected by Council fisheries, and are otherwise consistent with ESA obligations. Accordingly, NMFS, through this final rule, approves and implements the Council’s recommendations. North of Cape Falcon, 2019 management measures for non-Indian commercial troll and recreational fisheries have somewhat decreased quotas for Chinook salmon compared to 2018; coho quotas are substantially higher than in 2018. Quotas for the 2019 treaty-Indian commercial troll fishery North of Cape Falcon are 35,000 Chinook salmon and 55,000 coho in ocean management areas and Washington State Statistical Area 4B combined. These quotas provide somewhat fewer Chinook salmon and VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:48 May 03, 2019 Jkt 247001 substantially more coho than in 2018. The treaty-Indian commercial fisheries include a May and June fishery with a quota of 17,500 Chinook, and a July and August fishery, with quotas of 17,500 Chinook and 55,000 coho. South of Cape Falcon, commercial troll and recreational fishery management measures are are shaped to meet conservation and management goals for KRFC and SRFC spawning escapement and fishery impact limitations for CCC. Commercial and recreational fisheries south of Cape Falcon will be directed primarily at Chinook salmon; commercial fisheries south of Cape Falcon will have no coho retention. The timing of the March and April Council meetings makes it impracticable for the Council to recommend fishing seasons that begin before May 1 of the same year. Therefore, this action also establishes the 2020 fishing seasons that open earlier than May 1. The Council recommended, and NMFS concurs, that the commercial season off Oregon from Cape Falcon to the Oregon/California border, the commercial season off California from Horse Mountain to Point Arena, the recreational season off Oregon from Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain, and the recreational season off California from Horse Mountain to the U.S./Mexico border will open in 2020 as indicated in the ‘‘Season Description’’ section of this document. At the March 2020 meeting, NMFS may take inseason action, if recommended by the Council or the states, to adjust the commercial and recreational seasons prior to May 1 in the areas off Oregon and California. The following sections set out the management regime for the ocean salmon fishery. Open seasons and days are described in Sections 1, 2, and 3 of the 2019 management measures. Inseason closures in the commercial and recreational fisheries are announced on the NMFS hotline and through the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) Notice to Mariners as described in Section 6. Other inseason adjustments to management measures are also announced on the hotline and through the Notice to Mariners. Inseason actions will also be published in the Federal Register as soon as practicable. The following are the management measures recommended by the Council, approved, and implemented here for 2019 and, as specified, for 2020. Section 1. Commercial Management Measures for 2019 Ocean Salmon Fisheries Parts A, B, and C of this section contain restrictions that must be PO 00000 Frm 00035 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 19733 followed for lawful participation in the fishery. Part A identifies each fishing area and provides the geographic boundaries from north to south, the open seasons for the area, the salmon species allowed to be caught during the seasons, and any other special restrictions effective in the area. Part B specifies minimum size limits. Part C specifies special requirements, definitions, restrictions, and exceptions. A. Season Description North of Cape Falcon, OR —U.S./Canada Border to Cape Falcon May 6 through the earlier of June 28 or 13,200 Chinook, no more than 5,000 of which may be caught in the area between the U.S./Canada border and the Queets River and no more than 1,800 of which may be caught in the area between Leadbetter Point and Cape Falcon (C.8). Open seven days per week (C.1). In the area between the U.S./ Canada border and the Queets River: During the period May 6 through May 15 the landing and possession limit is 100 Chinook per vessel for the open period, during the period May 16 through June 28 the landing and possession limit is 50 Chinook per vessel per landing week (Thursday through Wednesday) (C.1, C.6). In the area between Leadbetter Point and Cape Falcon: During the period May 6 through May 15 the landing and possession limit is 100 Chinook per vessel for the open period, during the period May 16 through June 28 the landing and possession limit is 50 Chinook per vessel per landing week (Thursday through Wednesday) (C.1, C.6). All salmon except coho may be retained (C.4, C.7). Chinook minimum size limit of 28 inches total length (B). See compliance requirements (C.1) and gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). When it is projected that approximately 60 percent of the overall Chinook guideline has been landed, or approximately 60 percent of the Chinook subarea guideline has been landed in the area between the U.S./ Canada border and the Queets River, or approximately 60 percent of the Chinook subarea guideline has been landed in the area between Leadbetter Point and Cape Falcon, inseason action will be considered to ensure the guideline is not exceeded. July 1 through the earlier of September 30 or 13,050 Chinook or 30,400 marked coho (C.8). Open seven days per week. All salmon may be retained, except no chum retention north of Cape Alava, Washington, in August and September (C.4, C.7). E:\FR\FM\06MYR1.SGM 06MYR1 jbell on DSK3GLQ082PROD with RULES 19734 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 87 / Monday, May 6, 2019 / Rules and Regulations Chinook minimum size limit of 28 inches total length. Coho minimum size limit of 16 inches total length (B, C.1). All coho must be marked with a healed adipose fin clip (C.8.d). See compliance requirements (C.1) and gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). Landing and possession limit of 150 marked coho per vessel per landing week (Thursday through Wednesday) (C.1). For all commercial troll fisheries north of Cape Falcon: Mandatory closed areas include: Salmon Troll Yelloweye Rockfish Conservation Area (YRCA), Cape Flattery and Columbia Control Zones, and, beginning August 12, Grays Harbor Control Zone (C.5). Vessels must land and deliver their salmon within 24 hours of any closure of this fishery. Vessels fishing or in possession of salmon north of Leadbetter Point must land and deliver all species of fish in a Washington port and must possess a Washington troll license. Vessels may not land fish east of the Sekiu River or east of the Megler-Astoria Bridge. For delivery to Washington ports south of Leadbetter Point, vessels must notify the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife at 360–249–1215 prior to crossing the Leadbetter Point line with area fished, total Chinook, coho, and halibut catch aboard, and destination with approximate time of delivery. During any single trip, only one side of the Leadbetter Point line may be fished (C.11). Vessels fishing or in possession of salmon south of Leadbetter Point must land and deliver all species of fish within the area and south of Leadbetter Point, except that Oregon permitted vessels may also land all species of fish in Garibaldi, OR. Under state law, vessels must report their catch on a state fish receiving ticket. Oregon State regulations require all fishers landing salmon into Oregon from any fishery between Leadbetter Point, WA, and Cape Falcon, OR, to notify Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) within one hour of delivery or prior to transport away from the port of landing by either calling 541–867–0300 ext. 271 or sending notification via email to nfalcon.trollreport@state.or.us. Notification shall include vessel name and number, number of salmon by species, port of landing and location of delivery, and estimated time of delivery. Inseason actions may modify harvest guidelines in later fisheries to achieve or prevent exceeding the overall allowable troll harvest impacts (C.8). Vessels in possession of salmon north of the Queets River may not cross the Queets River line without first notifying WDFW at 360–249–1215 with area fished, total Chinook, coho, and halibut catch VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:48 May 03, 2019 Jkt 247001 aboard, and destination. Vessels in possession of salmon south of the Queets River may not cross the Queets River line without first notifying WDFW at 360–249–1215 with area fished, total Chinook, coho, and halibut catch aboard, and destination. South of Cape Falcon, OR —Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain April 20–30; May 6–30; June 1–August 29; September 1–October 31 (C.9.a). Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained (C.4, C.7). Chinook minimum size limit of 28 inches total length (B, C.1). All vessels fishing in the area must land their fish in the state of Oregon. See gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). Beginning September 1, no more than 75 Chinook allowed per vessel per landing week (Thursday through Wednesday). In 2020, the season will open March 15 for all salmon except coho. Chinook minimum size limit of 28 inches total length. Gear restrictions same as in 2019. This opening could be modified following Council review at its March 2020 meeting. —Humbug Mountain to Oregon/ California Border (Oregon KMZ) April 20–30; May 6–30; June 1 through the earlier of June 30, or a 3,200 Chinook quota; July 1 through the earlier of July 31, or a 2,500 Chinook quota; August 1 through the earlier of August 29, or a 1,200 Chinook quota; (C.9.a). Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained (C.4, C.7). Chinook minimum size limit of 28 inches total length (B, C.1). See compliance requirements (C.1) and gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). Prior to June 1, all salmon caught in this area must be landed and delivered in the state of Oregon. June 1 through August 29 weekly landing and possession limit of 50 Chinook per vessel per landing week (Thursday through Wednesday). Any remaining portion of Chinook quotas may be transferred inseason on an impact neutral basis to the next open quota period (C.8.b). All vessels fishing in this area during June, July, and August must land and deliver all salmon within this area or into Port Orford, within 24 hours of any closure of this fishery, and prior to fishing outside of this area. For all quota managed seasons (June, July, and August), Oregon state regulations require fishers to notify ODFW within PO 00000 Frm 00036 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 one hour of landing and prior to transport away from the port of landing by calling 541–867–0300 extension 252 or sending notification via email to kmzor.trollreport@state.or.us, with vessel name and number, number of salmon by species, location of delivery, and estimated time of delivery. In 2020, the season will open March 15 for all salmon except coho. Chinook minimum size limit of 28 inches total length. Gear restrictions same as in 2019. This opening could be modified following Council review at its March 2020 meeting. —Oregon/California Border to Humboldt South Jetty (California KMZ) June 1 through the earlier of June 30, or a 2,500 Chinook quota; July 1 through the earlier of July 30, or a 2,500 Chinook quota; August 2 through the earlier of August 31, or a 2,000 Chinook quota (C.9.b). Open five days per week (Friday through Tuesday). All salmon except coho may be retained (C.4, C.7). Chinook minimum size limit of 27 inches total length (B, C.1). Landing and possession limit of 20 Chinook per vessel per day (C.8.f). Any remaining portion of Chinook quotas may be transferred inseason on an impact neutral basis to the next open quota period (C.8.b). All fish caught in this area must be landed within the area, within 24 hours of any closure of the fishery, and prior to fishing outside the area (C.10). See compliance requirements (C.1) and gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). Klamath Control Zone closed (C.5.e). See California State regulations for additional closures adjacent to the Smith and Klamath Rivers. —Humboldt South Jetty to Horse Mountain Closed. For all commercial fisheries south of Cape Falcon: when the fishery is closed between the Oregon/California border and Humbug Mountain and open to the south, vessels with fish on board caught in the open area off California may seek temporary mooring in Brookings, OR, prior to landing in California, only if such vessels first notify the Chetco River Coast Guard Station via VHF channel 22A between the hours of 0500 and 2200 and provide the vessel name, number of fish on board, and estimated time of arrival (C.6). —Horse Mountain to Point Arena (Fort Bragg) June 4–30; July 11–31; August 1–28 (C.9.b). E:\FR\FM\06MYR1.SGM 06MYR1 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 87 / Monday, May 6, 2019 / Rules and Regulations Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained (C.4, C.7). Chinook minimum size limit of 27 inches total length (B, C.1). See compliance requirements (C.1) and gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). All salmon must be landed in California. All salmon caught in the area must be landed and offloaded no later than 11:59 p.m., August 30 (C.6). When the California KMZ fishery is open, all fish caught in the area must be landed south of Horse Mountain until the California KMZ fishery has been closed for at least 24 hours (C.6). In 2020, the season will open April 16–30 for all salmon except coho, with a 27 inch Chinook minimum size limit and the same gear restrictions as in 2019. All salmon caught in the area must be landed in the area. This opening could be modified following Council review at its March 2020 meeting. —Point Arena to Pigeon Point (San Francisco) May 16–31; June 4–30; July 11–31; August 1–28; September 1–30 (C.9.b). Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained (C.4, C.7). Chinook minimum size limit of 27 inches total length (B, C.1). See compliance requirements (C.1) and gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). All salmon must be landed in California. All salmon caught in the area prior to September 1 must be landed and offloaded no later than 11:59 p.m., August 30 (C.6). When the California KMZ fishery is open, all fish caught in the area must be landed south of Horse Mountain until the California KMZ fishery has been closed for at least 24 hours (C.6). • Point Reyes to Point San Pedro (Fall Area Target Zone) October 1–4, 7–11, 14–15. Open five days per week, Monday through Friday. All salmon except coho may be retained (C.4, C.7). Chinook minimum size limit of 27 inches total length (B, C.1). All salmon caught in this area must be landed between Point Arena and Pigeon Point (C.6). See compliance requirements (C.1) and gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). —Pigeon Point to U.S./Mexico Border (Monterey) May 1–31; 19735 June 4–30; July 11–31 (C.9.b). Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained (C.4, C.7). Chinook minimum size limit of 27 inches total length (B, C.1). See compliance requirements (C.1) and gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). All fish must be landed in California. All salmon caught in the area must be landed and offloaded no later than 11:59 p.m., August 5 (C.6). When the California KMZ fishery is open, all fish caught in the area must be landed south of Horse Mountain until the California KMZ fishery has been closed for at least 24 hours (C.6). For all commercial troll fisheries in California: California State regulations require all salmon be made available to a California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) representative for sampling immediately at port of landing. Any person in possession of a salmon with a missing adipose fin, upon request by an authorized agent or employee of the CDFW, shall immediately relinquish the head of the salmon to the state (California Fish and Game Code § 8226). B. Minimum Size (Inches) (See C.1) Chinook Coho Area (when open) Pink Total length North of Cape Falcon, OR ..................................................... Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain ........................................ Humbug Mountain to OR/CA border ...................................... OR/CA border to Humboldt South Jetty ................................ Horse Mountain to Point Arena .............................................. Point Arena to Pigeon Point ................................................... Pigeon Point to U.S./Mexico border ....................................... 28.0 28.0 28.0 27.0 27.0 27.0 27.0 Head-off 21.5 21.5 21.5 20.5 20.5 20.5 20.5 Total length Head-off 16 ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ 12 ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ None. None. None. 27. 27. 27. 27. Metric equivalents: 28.0 in. = 71.1 cm, 27.0 in. = 68.5 cm, 21.5 in. = 54.6 cm, 20.5 in. = 52.1 cm, 16.0 in. = .40.6 cm, and 12.0 in. = .30.5 cm. C. Requirements, Definitions, Restrictions, or Exceptions jbell on DSK3GLQ082PROD with RULES C.1. Compliance With Minimum Size or Other Special Restrictions All salmon on board a vessel must meet the minimum size, landing/ possession limit, or other special requirements for the area being fished and the area in which they are landed if the area is open or has been closed less than 48 hours for that species of salmon. Salmon may be landed in an area that has been closed for a species of salmon more than 48 hours only if they meet the minimum size, landing/ possession limit, or other special requirements for the area in which they were caught. Salmon may not be filleted prior to landing. Any person who is required to report a salmon landing by applicable state law VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:01 May 03, 2019 Jkt 247001 must include on the state landing receipt for that landing both the number and weight of salmon landed by species. States may require fish landing/ receiving tickets be kept on board the vessel for 90 days or more after landing to account for all previous salmon landings. C.2. Gear Restrictions a. Salmon may be taken only by hook and line using single point, single shank, barbless hooks. b. Cape Falcon, OR, to the Oregon/ California border: no more than 4 spreads are allowed per line. c. Oregon/California border to U.S./ Mexico border: no more than 6 lines are allowed per vessel, and barbless circle hooks are required when fishing with bait by any means other than trolling. PO 00000 Frm 00037 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 C.3. Gear Definitions Trolling defined: Fishing from a boat or floating device that is making way by means of a source of power, other than drifting by means of the prevailing water current or weather conditions. Troll fishing gear defined: One or more lines that drag hooks behind a moving fishing vessel engaged in trolling. In that portion of the fishery management area off Oregon and Washington, the line or lines must be affixed to the vessel and must not be intentionally disengaged from the vessel at any time during the fishing operation. Spread defined: A single leader connected to an individual lure and/or bait. Circle hook defined: A hook with a generally circular shape and a point which turns inward, pointing directly to the shank at a 90° angle. E:\FR\FM\06MYR1.SGM 06MYR1 19736 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 87 / Monday, May 6, 2019 / Rules and Regulations C.4. Vessel Operation in Closed Areas With Salmon on Board a. Except as provided under C.4.b below, it is unlawful for a vessel to have troll or recreational gear in the water while in any area closed to fishing for a certain species of salmon, while possessing that species of salmon; however, fishing for species other than salmon is not prohibited if the area is open for such species, and no salmon are in possession. b. When Genetic Stock Identification (GSI) samples will be collected in an area closed to commercial salmon fishing, the scientific research permit holder shall notify NOAA Office of Law Enforcement, USCG, CDFW, WDFW, and Oregon State Police at least 24 hours prior to sampling and provide the following information: The vessel name, date, location, and time collection activities will be done. Any vessel collecting GSI samples in a closed area shall not possess any salmon other than those from which GSI samples are being collected. Salmon caught for collection of GSI samples must be immediately released in good condition after collection of samples. jbell on DSK3GLQ082PROD with RULES C.5. Control Zone Definitions a. Cape Flattery Control Zone—The area from Cape Flattery (48°23′00″ N lat.) to the northern boundary of the U.S. EEZ; and the area from Cape Flattery south to Cape Alava (48°10′00″ N lat.) and east of 125°05′00″ W long. b. Salmon Troll YRCA (50 CFR 660.70(c))—The area in Washington Marine Catch Area 3 from 48°00.00′ N lat.; 125°14.00′ W long. to 48°02.00′ N lat.; 125°14.00′ W long. to 48°02.00′ N lat.; 125°16.50′ W long. to 48°00.00′ N lat.; 125°16.50′ W long. and connecting back to 48°00.00′ N lat.; 125°14.00′ W long. c. Grays Harbor Control Zone—The area defined by a line drawn from the Westport Lighthouse (46°53′18″ N lat., 124° 07′01″ W long.) to Buoy #2 (46°52′42″ N lat., 124°12′42″ W long.) to Buoy #3 (46°55′00″ N lat., 124°14′48″ W long.) to the Grays Harbor north jetty (46°55′36″ N lat., 124°10′51″ W long.). d. Columbia Control Zone—An area at the Columbia River mouth, bounded on the west by a line running northeast/ southwest between the red lighted Buoy #4 (46°13′35″ N lat., 124°06′50″ W long.) and the green lighted Buoy #7 (46°15′09′ N lat., 124°06′16″ W long.); on the east, by the Buoy #10 line which bears north/ south at 357° true from the south jetty at 46°14′00″ N lat.,124°03′07″ W long. to its intersection with the north jetty; on the north, by a line running northeast/ southwest between the green lighted VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:48 May 03, 2019 Jkt 247001 Buoy #7 to the tip of the north jetty (46°15′48″ N lat., 124°05′20″ W long.) and then along the north jetty to the point of intersection with the Buoy #10 line; and, on the south, by a line running northeast/southwest between the red lighted Buoy #4 and tip of the south jetty (46°14′03″ N lat., 124°04′05″ W long.), and then along the south jetty to the point of intersection with the Buoy #10 line. e. Klamath Control Zone—The ocean area at the Klamath River mouth bounded on the north by 41°38′48″ N lat. (approximately 6 nautical miles north of the Klamath River mouth); on the west by 124°23′00″ W long. (approximately 12 nautical miles off shore); and on the south by 41°26′48″ N lat. (approximately 6 nautical miles south of the Klamath River mouth). C.6. Notification When Unsafe Conditions Prevent Compliance With Regulations If prevented by unsafe weather conditions or mechanical problems from meeting special management area landing restrictions, vessels must notify the USCG and receive acknowledgment of such notification prior to leaving the area. This notification shall include the name of the vessel, port where delivery will be made, approximate number of salmon (by species) on board, the estimated time of arrival, and the specific reason the vessel is not able to meet special management area landing restrictions. In addition to contacting the USCG, vessels fishing south of the Oregon/ California border must notify CDFW within one hour of leaving the management area by calling 800–889– 8346 and providing the same information as reported to the USCG. All salmon must be offloaded within 24 hours of reaching port. C.7. Incidental Halibut Harvest During authorized periods, the operator of a vessel that has been issued an incidental halibut harvest license by the International Pacific Halibut Commission (IPHC) may retain Pacific halibut caught incidentally in Area 2A while trolling for salmon. Halibut retained must be no less than 32 inches in total length, measured from the tip of the lower jaw with the mouth closed to the extreme end of the middle of the tail, and must be landed with the head on. When halibut are caught and landed incidental to commercial salmon fishing by an IPHC license holder, any person who is required to report the salmon landing by applicable state law must include on the state landing receipt for that landing both the number of halibut PO 00000 Frm 00038 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 landed, and the total dressed, head-on weight of halibut landed, in pounds, as well as the number and species of salmon landed. License applications for incidental harvest must be obtained from the IPHC (phone: 206–634–1838). Applicants must apply prior to mid-March 2020 for 2020 permits (exact date to be set by the IPHC in early 2020). Incidental harvest is authorized only during April, May, and June of the 2019 troll seasons and after June 30 in 2019 if quota remains and if announced on the NMFS hotline (phone: 800–662–9825 or 206–526– 6667). WDFW, ODFW, and CDFW will monitor landings. If the landings are projected to exceed the IPHC’s 44,899 pound preseason allocation or the total Area 2A non-Indian commercial halibut allocation, NMFS will take inseason action to prohibit retention of halibut in the non-Indian salmon troll fishery. May 1, 2019, until the end of the 2019 salmon troll season, and April 1–30, 2020, license holders may land or possess no more than one Pacific halibut per each two Chinook, except one Pacific halibut may be possessed or landed without meeting the ratio requirement, and no more than 35 halibut may be possessed or landed per trip. Pacific halibut retained must be no less than 32 inches in total length (with head on). IPHC license holders must comply with all applicable IPHC regulations. Incidental Pacific halibut catch regulations in the commercial salmon troll fishery adopted for 2019, prior to any 2019 inseason action, will be in effect when incidental Pacific halibut retention opens on April 1, 2020, unless otherwise modified by inseason action at the March 2020 Council meeting. a. ‘‘C-shaped’’ YRCA is an area to be voluntarily avoided for salmon trolling. NMFS and the Council request salmon trollers voluntarily avoid this area in order to protect yelloweye rockfish. The area is defined in the Pacific Council Halibut Catch Sharing Plan in the North Coast subarea (Washington marine area 3), with the following coordinates in the order listed: 48°18′ N lat.; 125°18′ W long.; 48°18′ N lat.; 124°59′ W long.; 48°11′ N lat.; 124°59′ W long.; 48°11′ N lat.; 125°11′ W long.; 48°04′ N lat.; 125°11′ W long.; 48°04′ N lat.; 124°59′ W long.; 48°00′ N lat.; 124°59′ W long.; 48°00′ N lat.; 125°18′ W long.; and connecting back to 48°18′ N lat.; 125°18′ W long. C.8. Inseason Management In addition to standard inseason actions or modifications already noted E:\FR\FM\06MYR1.SGM 06MYR1 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 87 / Monday, May 6, 2019 / Rules and Regulations jbell on DSK3GLQ082PROD with RULES under the season description, the following inseason guidance applies: a. Chinook remaining from the May through June non-Indian commercial troll harvest guideline north of Cape Falcon may be transferred to the July through September harvest guideline if the transfer would not result in exceeding preseason impact expectations on any stocks. b. Chinook remaining from the May, June, and/or July non-Indian commercial troll quotas in the Oregon or California KMZ may be transferred to the Chinook quota for the next open quota period if the transfer would not result in exceeding preseason impact expectations on any stocks. c. NMFS may transfer salmon between the recreational and commercial fisheries north of Cape Falcon if there is agreement among the areas’ representatives on the Salmon Advisory Subpanel (SAS), and if the transfer would not result in exceeding preseason impact expectations on any stocks. d. At the March 2020 meeting, the Council will consider inseason recommendations for special regulations for any experimental fisheries (proposals must meet Council protocol and be received in November 2019). e. If retention of unmarked coho (adipose fin intact) is permitted by inseason action, the allowable coho quota will be adjusted to ensure preseason projected impacts on all stocks is not exceeded. f. Landing limits may be modified inseason to sustain season length and keep harvest within overall quotas. C.9. State Waters Fisheries Consistent with Council management objectives: a. The State of Oregon may establish additional late-season fisheries in state waters. b. The State of California may establish limited fisheries in selected state waters. Check state regulations for details. C.10. For the purposes of California Fish and Game Code, Section 8232.5, the definition of the KMZ for the ocean salmon season shall be that area from Humbug Mountain, Oregon, to Horse Mountain, California. C.11. Latitudes for geographical reference of major landmarks along the West Coast are listed in Section 5 of this rule. Section 2. Recreational Management Measures for 2019 Ocean Salmon Fisheries Parts A, B, and C of this section contain restrictions that must be VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:48 May 03, 2019 Jkt 247001 followed for lawful participation in the fishery. Part A identifies each fishing area and provides the geographic boundaries from north to south, the open seasons for the area, the salmon species allowed to be caught during the seasons, and any other special restrictions effective in the area. Part B specifies minimum size limits. Part C specifies special requirements, definitions, restrictions and exceptions. A. Season Description North of Cape Falcon, OR —U.S./Canada Border to Cape Alava (Neah Bay Subarea) June 22 through earlier of September 30 or 16,600 marked coho subarea quota, with a subarea guideline of 5,200 Chinook (C.5). Open seven days per week. All salmon may be retained, except no chum beginning August 1; two salmon per day. All coho must be marked with a healed adipose fin clip (B, C.1). Beginning August 1, Chinook nonretention east of the Bonilla-Tatoosh line (C.4.a) during Council managed ocean fishery. See gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). Inseason management may be used to sustain season length and keep harvest within the overall Chinook and coho recreational total allowable catches (TACs) for north of Cape Falcon (C.5). —Cape Alava to Queets River (La Push Subarea) June 22 through earlier of September 30, or 4,050 marked coho subarea quota with a subarea guideline of 1,100 Chinook (C.5). October 1 through earlier of October 13, or 100 marked coho quota, or 100 Chinook quota (C.5) in the area north of 47°50′00″ N lat. and south of 48°00′00″ N lat. Open seven days per week. All salmon may be retained; two salmon per day. All coho must be marked with a healed adipose fin clip (C.1). See gear restrictions and definitions (B, C.2, C.3). Inseason management may be used to sustain season length and keep harvest within the overall Chinook and coho recreational TACs for north of Cape Falcon (C.5). —Queets River to Leadbetter Point (Westport Subarea) June 22 through earlier of September 30 or 59,050 marked coho subarea quota, with a subarea guideline of 12,700 Chinook (C.5). Open seven days per week. All salmon may be retained; two salmon per day, no more than one of which may be a Chinook. All coho must be marked PO 00000 Frm 00039 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 19737 with a healed adipose fin clip (B, C.1). See gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). Grays Harbor Control Zone closed beginning August 12 (C.4.b). Inseason management may be used to sustain season length and keep harvest within the overall Chinook and coho recreational TACs for north of Cape Falcon (C.5). —Leadbetter Point to Cape Falcon (Columbia River Subarea) June 22 through earlier of September 30 or 79,800 marked coho subarea quota, with a subarea guideline of 7,150 Chinook (C.5). Open seven days per week. All salmon may be retained; two salmon per day, no more than one of which may be a Chinook. All coho must be marked with a healed adipose fin clip (B, C.1). See gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). Columbia Control Zone closed (C.4.c). Inseason management may be used to sustain season length and keep harvest within the overall Chinook and coho recreational TACs for north of Cape Falcon (C.5). South of Cape Falcon, OR —Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain March 15 through October 31 (C.6), except as provided below during the allsalmon mark-selective coho fishery and the non-mark-selective coho fishery (C.5). Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained; two salmon per day (C.1). Chinook minimum size limit of 24 inches total length (B). See gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). In 2020, the season will open March 15 for all salmon except coho; two salmon per day (C.1). Chinook minimum size limit of 24 inches total length (B); and the same gear restrictions as in 2019 (C.2, C.3). This opening could be modified following Council review at the March 2020 Council meeting. —Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain Mark-selective coho fishery: June 22 through the earlier of August 25, or 90,000 marked coho quota (C.6). Open seven days per week. All salmon may be retained; two salmon per day. All retained coho must be marked with a healed adipose fin clip (C.1). See minimum size limits (B). See gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). Any remainder of the mark-selective coho quota may be transerred inseason on an impact neutral basis to the nonselective coho quota from Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain (C.5). Non-mark-selective coho fishery: August 31-September 30, open each E:\FR\FM\06MYR1.SGM 06MYR1 19738 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 87 / Monday, May 6, 2019 / Rules and Regulations Friday through Sunday, or 9,000 nonmark-selective coho quota (C.6). Open days may be modified inseason (C.5). All salmon may be retained, two salmon per day (C.1). See minimum size limits (B). See gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). —Humbug Mountain to Oregon/ California Border (Oregon KMZ) May 25–September 2 (C.6). Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained, except as described above in the Cape Falcon to Oregon/California border allsalmon mark-selective coho fishery. Two salmon per day (C.1). Chinook minimum size limit of 24 inches total length (B). See gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). For recreational fisheries from Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain: Fishing in the Stonewall Bank YRCA restricted to trolling only on days the all depth recreational halibut fishery is open (call the halibut fishing hotline 800–662– 9825 for specific dates) (C.3.b, C.4.d). —Oregon/California Border to Horse Mountain (California KMZ) May 25–September 2 (C.6). Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained; two salmon per day (C.1). Chinook minimum size limit of 20 inches total length (B). See gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). Klamath Control Zone closed in August (C.4.e). See California State regulations for additional closures adjacent to the Smith, Eel, and Klamath Rivers. —Horse Mountain to Point Arena (Fort Bragg) April 13–30; May 18–October 31 (C.6). Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained; two salmon per day (C.1). Chinook minimum size limit of 20 inches total length (B). See gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). In 2020, season opens April 4 for all salmon except coho, two salmon per day (C.1). Chinook minimum size limit of 20 inches total length (B); and the same gear restrictions as in 2019 (C.2, C.3). This opening could be modified following Council review at the March 2020 Council meeting. —Point Arena to Pigeon Point (San Francisco) April 13–30; May 18–October 31 (C.6). Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained; two salmon per day (C.1). Chinook minimum size limit of 24 inches total length through April 30, then 20 inches thereafter (B). See gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). In 2020, season opens April 4 for all salmon except coho; two salmon per day (C.1). Chinook minimum size limit Area (when open) of 24 inches total length (B); and the same gear restrictions as in 2019 (C.2, C.3). This opening could be modified following Council review at the March 2020 Council meeting. —Pigeon Point to U.S./Mexico Border (Monterey) April 6–August 28 (C.6). Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained; two salmon per day (C.1). Chinook minimum size limit of 24 inches total length (B). See gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). In 2020, season opens April 4 for all salmon except coho; two salmon per day (C.1). Chinook minimum size limit of 24 inches total length (B); and the same gear restrictions as in 2019 (C.2, C.3). This opening could be modified following Council review at the March 2020 Council meeting. California State regulations require all salmon be made available to a CDFW representative for sampling immediately at port of landing. Any person in possession of a salmon with a missing adipose fin, upon request by an authorized agent or employee of the CDFW, shall immediately relinquish the head of the salmon to the state (California Code of Regulations Title 14 Section 1.73). B. Minimum Size (Total Length in Inches) (See C.1) Chinook North of Cape Falcon ..................................................................................................................... Cape Falcon to Humbug Mt ........................................................................................................... Humbug Mt. to OR/CA border ....................................................................................................... OR/CA border to Horse Mt ............................................................................................................ Horse Mt. to Pt. Arena ................................................................................................................... Pt. Arena to Pigeon Pt. (April 13–30) ............................................................................................ Pt. Arena to Pigeon Pt. (May 18–October 31) .............................................................................. Pigeon Pt. to U.S./Mexico border .................................................................................................. 24.0 24.0 24.0 20.0 20.0 24.0 20.0 24.0 Coho 16.0 16.0 16.0 ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ ........................ Pink None. None. None. 20.0. 20.0. 24.0. 20.0. 24.0. Metric equivalents: 24.0 in. = 61.0 cm, 20.0 in. = 50.8 cm, and 16.0 in. = 40.6 cm. C. Requirements, Definitions, Restrictions, or Exceptions jbell on DSK3GLQ082PROD with RULES C.1. Compliance With Minimum Size and Other Special Restrictions All salmon on board a vessel must meet the minimum size or other special requirements for the area being fished and the area in which they are landed if that area is open. Salmon may be landed in an area that is closed only if they meet the minimum size or other special requirements for the area in which they were caught. Salmon may not be filleted prior to landing. Ocean Boat Limits: Off the coast of Washington, Oregon, and California, each fisher aboard a vessel may VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:48 May 03, 2019 Jkt 247001 continue to use angling gear until the combined daily limits of Chinook and coho salmon for all licensed and juvenile anglers aboard have been attained (additional state restrictions may apply). C.2. Gear Restrictions Salmon may be taken only by hook and line using barbless hooks. All persons fishing for salmon, and all persons fishing from a boat with salmon on board, must meet the gear restrictions listed below for specific areas or seasons. a. U.S./Canada border to Point Conception, California: No more than one rod may be used per angler; and no PO 00000 Frm 00040 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 more than two single point, single shank barbless hooks are required for all fishing gear. b. Horse Mountain, California, to Point Conception, California: Single point, single shank, barbless circle hooks (see gear definitions below) are required when fishing with bait by any means other than trolling, and no more than two such hooks shall be used. When angling with two hooks, the distance between the hooks must not exceed five inches when measured from the top of the eye of the top hook to the inner base of the curve of the lower hook, and both hooks must be permanently tied in place (hard tied). E:\FR\FM\06MYR1.SGM 06MYR1 19739 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 87 / Monday, May 6, 2019 / Rules and Regulations Circle hooks are not required when artificial lures are used without bait. C.3. Gear Definitions a. Recreational fishing gear defined: Off Oregon and Washington, angling tackle consists of a single line that must be attached to a rod and reel held by hand or closely attended; the rod and reel must be held by hand while playing a hooked fish. No person may use more than one rod and line while fishing off Oregon or Washington. Off California, the line must be attached to a rod and reel held by hand or closely attended; weights directly attached to a line may not exceed four pounds (1.8 kg). While fishing off California north of Point Conception, no person fishing for salmon, and no person fishing from a boat with salmon on board, may use more than one rod and line. Fishing includes any activity which can reasonably be expected to result in the catching, taking, or harvesting of fish. b. Trolling defined: Angling from a boat or floating device that is making way by means of a source of power, other than drifting by means of the prevailing water current or weather conditions. c. Circle hook defined: A hook with a generally circular shape and a point which turns inward, pointing directly to the shank at a 90° angle. jbell on DSK3GLQ082PROD with RULES C.4. Control Zone Definitions a. The Bonilla-Tatoosh Line: A line running from the western end of Cape Flattery to Tatoosh Island Lighthouse (48°23′30″ N lat., 124°44′12″ W long.) to the buoy adjacent to Duntze Rock (48°24′37″ N lat., 124°44′37″ W long.), then in a straight line to Bonilla Point (48°35′39″ N lat., 124°42′58″ W long.) on Vancouver Island, British Columbia. b. Grays Harbor Control Zone—The area defined by a line drawn from the Westport Lighthouse (46°53′18″ N lat., 124°07′01″ W long.) to Buoy #2 (46°52′42″ N lat., 124°12′42″ W long.) to Buoy #3 (46°55′00″ N lat., 124°14′48″ W long.) to the Grays Harbor north jetty (46°55′36″ N lat., 124°10′51″ W long.). c. Columbia Control Zone: An area at the Columbia River mouth, bounded on the west by a line running northeast/ southwest between the red lighted Buoy #4 (46°13′35″ N lat., 124°06′50″ W long.) and the green lighted Buoy #7 (46°15′09′ N lat., 124°06′16″ W long.); on the east, by the Buoy #10 line which bears north/ south at 357° true from the south jetty at 46°14′00″ N lat., 124°03′07″ W long. to its intersection with the north jetty; on the north, by a line running northeast/southwest between the green lighted Buoy #7 to the tip of the north jetty (46°15′48″ N lat., 124°05′20″ W long.) and then along the north jetty to the point of intersection with the Buoy #10 line; and on the south, by a line running northeast/southwest between the red lighted Buoy #4 and tip of the south jetty (46°14′03″ N lat., 124°04′05″ W long.), and then along the south jetty to the point of intersection with the Buoy #10 line. d. Stonewall Bank YRCA: The area defined by the following coordinates in the order listed: 44°37.46′ N lat.; 124°24.92′ W long. 44°37.46′ N lat.; 124°23.63′ W long. 44°28.71′ N lat.; 124°21.80′ W long. 44°28.71′ N lat.; 124°24.10′ W long. 44°31.42′ N lat.; 124°25.47′ W long. and connecting back to 44°37.46′ N lat.; 124°24.92′ W long. e. Klamath Control Zone: The ocean area at the Klamath River mouth bounded on the north by 41°38′48″ N lat. (approximately 6 nautical miles north of the Klamath River mouth); on the west by 124°23′00″ W long. (approximately 12 nautical miles off shore); and, on the south by 41°26′48″ N lat. (approximately 6 nautical miles south of the Klamath River mouth). C.5. Inseason Management Regulatory modifications may become necessary inseason to meet preseason management objectives such as quotas, harvest guidelines, and season duration. In addition to standard inseason actions or modifications already noted under the season description, the following inseason guidance applies: a. Actions could include modifications to bag limits, or days open to fishing, or extensions or reductions in areas open to fishing. b. Coho may be transferred inseason among recreational subareas north of Cape Falcon to help meet the recreational season duration objectives (for each subarea) after conferring with representatives of the affected ports and the Council’s SAS recreational representatives north of Cape Falcon, and if the transfer would not result in exceeding preseason impact expectations on any stocks. c. Chinook and coho may be transferred between the recreational and commercial fisheries north of Cape Falcon if there is agreement among the representatives of the SAS, and if the transfer would not result in exceeding preseason impact expectations on any stocks. d. Fishery managers may consider inseason action modifying regulations restricting retention of unmarked (adipose fin intact) coho. To remain consistent with preseason expectations, any inseason action shall consider, if significant, the difference between observed and preseason forecasted (adipose-clipped) mark rates. Such a consideration may also include a change in bag limit of two salmon, no more than one of which may be a coho. e. Marked coho remaining from the Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain recreational mark-selective coho quota may be transferred inseason to the Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain non-markselective recreational fishery if the transfer would not result in exceeding preseason impact expectations on any stocks. C.6. Additional Seasons in State Territorial Waters Consistent with Council management objectives, the States of Washington, Oregon, and California may establish limited seasons in state waters. Check state regulations for details. Section 3. Treaty Indian Management Measures for 2019 Ocean Salmon Fisheries Parts A, B, and C of this section contain requirements that must be followed for lawful participation in the fishery. A. Season Descriptions May 1 through the earlier of June 30 or 17,500 Chinook quota. All salmon may be retained except coho. If the Chinook quota is exceeded, the excess will be deducted from the later all-salmon season (C.5). See size limit (B) and other restrictions (C). July 1 through the earlier of September 15, or 17,500 Chinook quota, or 55,000 coho quota. All salmon. See size limit (B) and other restrictions (C). B. Minimum Size (Inches) Chinook Area (when open) Coho Pink Total length North of Cape Falcon ......................................................... Head-off 24.0 Total length 18.0 16.0 Metric equivalents: 24.0 in. = 61.0 cm, 18.0 in. = 45.7 cm, 16.0 in. = 40.6 cm, 12.0 in. = 30.5 cm. VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:48 May 03, 2019 Jkt 247001 PO 00000 Frm 00041 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 E:\FR\FM\06MYR1.SGM 06MYR1 Head-off 12.0 None. jbell on DSK3GLQ082PROD with RULES 19740 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 87 / Monday, May 6, 2019 / Rules and Regulations C. Requirements, Restrictions, and Exceptions Federal District Court for the Western District of Washington). C.1. Tribe and Area Boundaries All boundaries may be changed to include such other areas as may hereafter be authorized by a Federal court for that tribe’s treaty fishery. S’KLALLAM—Washington State Statistical Area 4B (defined to include those waters of Puget Sound easterly of a line projected from the Bonilla Point Light on Vancouver Island to the Tatoosh Island light, thence to the most westerly point on Cape Flattery and westerly of a line projected true north from the fishing boundary marker at the mouth of the Sekiu River [WAC 220– 301–030]). MAKAH—Washington State Statistical Area 4B and that portion of the fishery management area (FMA) north of 48°02′15″ N lat. (Norwegian Memorial) and east of 125°44′00″ W long. QUILEUTE—A polygon commencing at Cape Alava, located at latitude 48°10′00″ north, longitude 124°43′56.9″ west; then proceeding west approximately forty nautical miles at that latitude to a northwestern point located at latitude 48°10′00″ north, longitude 125°44′00″ west; then proceeding in a southeasterly direction mirroring the coastline at a distance no farther than 40 nmi from the mainland Pacific coast shoreline at any line of latitude, to a southwestern point at latitude 47°31′42″ north, longitude 125°20′26″ west; then proceeding east along that line of latitude to the Pacific coast shoreline at latitude 47°31′42″ north, longitude 124°21′9.0″ west (per court order dated March 5, 2018, Federal District Court for the Western District of Washington). HOH—That portion of the FMA between 47°54′18″ N lat. (Quillayute River) and 47°21′00″ N lat. (Quinault River) and east of 125°44′00″ W long. QUINAULT—A polygon commencing at the Pacific coast shoreline near Destruction Island, located at latitude 47°40′06″ north, longitude 124°23′51.362″ west; then proceeding west approximately 30 nmi at that latitude to a northwestern point located at latitude 47°40′06″ north, longitude 125°08′30″ west; then proceeding in a southeasterly direction mirroring the coastline no farther than 30 nmi from the mainland Pacific coast shoreline at any line of latitude southwestern point at latitude 46°53′18″ north, longitude 124°53′53″ west; then proceeding east along that line of latitude to the Pacific coast shoreline at latitude 46°53′18″ north, longitude 124°7′36.6″ west (per court order dated March 5, 2018, C.2. Gear Restrictions VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:48 May 03, 2019 Jkt 247001 a. Single point, single shank, barbless hooks are required in all fisheries. b. No more than eight fixed lines per boat. c. No more than four hand held lines per person in the Makah area fishery (Washington State Statistical Area 4B and that portion of the FMA north of 48°02′15″ N lat. (Norwegian Memorial) and east of 125°44′00″ W long.). C.3. Quotas a. The quotas include troll catches by the S’Klallam and Makah tribes in Washington State Statistical Area 4B from May 1 through September 15. b. The Quileute Tribe will continue a ceremonial and subsistence fishery during the time frame of October 1 through October 15 in the same manner as in 2004–2015. Fish taken during this fishery are to be counted against treaty troll quotas established for the 2019 season (estimated harvest during the October ceremonial and subsistence fishery: 20 Chinook; 40 coho). C.4. Area Closures a. The area within a six nautical mile radius of the mouths of the Queets River (47°31′42″ N lat.) and the Hoh River (47°45′12″ N lat.) will be closed to commercial fishing. b. A closure within two nautical miles of the mouth of the Quinault River (47°21′00″ N. lat.) may be enacted by the Quinault Nation and/or the State of Washington and will not adversely affect the Secretary of Commerce’s management regime. C.5. Inseason Management In addition to standard inseason actions or modifications already noted under the season description, the following inseason guidance applies: a. Chinook remaining from the May through June treaty-Indian ocean troll harvest guideline north of Cape Falcon may be transferred to the July through September harvest guideline on a fishery impact equivalent basis. Section 4. Halibut Retention Under the authority of the Northern Pacific Halibut Act, NMFS promulgated regulations governing the Pacific halibut fishery, which appear at 50 CFR part 300, subpart E. On March 14, 2019, NMFS published a final rule announcing the IPHC’s regulations, including season dates, management measures, total allowable catch (TACs) for each IPHC management area including the U.S. West Coast (Area 2A) PO 00000 Frm 00042 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 and Catch Sharing Plans for the U.S. waters off of Alaska (84 FR 9243). The Area 2A Catch Sharing Plan, in combination with the IPHC regulations, provides that vessels participating in the salmon troll fishery in Area 2A, which have obtained the appropriate IPHC license, may retain halibut caught incidentally during authorized periods in conformance with provisions published with the annual salmon management measures. A salmon troller may participate in the halibut incidental catch fishery during the salmon troll season or in the directed commercial fishery targeting halibut, but not both. The following measures have been approved by the IPHC, and implemented by NMFS. During authorized periods, the operator of a vessel that has been issued an incidental halibut harvest license may retain Pacific halibut caught incidentally in Area 2A while trolling for salmon. Halibut retained must be no less than 32 inches (81.28 cm) in total length, measured from the tip of the lower jaw with the mouth closed to the extreme end of the middle of the tail, and must be landed with the head on. License applications for incidental harvest must be obtained from the IPHC (phone: 206–634–1838). Applicants must apply prior to mid-March 2020 for 2020 permits (exact date to be set by the IPHC in early 2020). Incidental harvest is authorized only during April, May, and June of the 2019 troll seasons and after June 30 in 2019 if quota remains and if announced on the NMFS hotline (phone: 800–662–9825 or 800–526– 6667). WDFW, ODFW, and CDFW will monitor landings. If the landings are projected to exceed the 44,899 pound preseason allocation or the total Area 2A non-Indian commercial halibut allocation, NMFS will take inseason action to prohibit retention of halibut in the non-Indian salmon troll fishery. May 1, 2019, until the end of the 2019 salmon troll season, and April 1–30, 2020, license holders may land or possess no more than one Pacific halibut per each two Chinook, except one Pacific halibut may be possessed or landed without meeting the ratio requirement, and no more than 35 halibut may be possessed or landed per trip. Pacific halibut retained must be no less than 32 inches in total length (with head on). IPHC license holders must comply with all applicable IPHC regulations. Incidental Pacific halibut catch regulations in the commercial salmon troll fishery adopted for 2019, prior to any 2019 inseason action, will be in effect when incidental Pacific halibut retention opens on April 1, 2020, unless E:\FR\FM\06MYR1.SGM 06MYR1 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 87 / Monday, May 6, 2019 / Rules and Regulations otherwise modified by inseason action at the March 2020 Council meeting. NMFS and the Council request that salmon trollers voluntarily avoid a ‘‘Cshaped’’ YRCA (also known as the Salmon Troll YRCA) in order to protect yelloweye rockfish. Coordinates for the Salmon Troll YRCA are defined at 50 CFR 660.70(a) in the North Coast subarea (Washington marine area 3). See Section 1.C.7 in this document for the coordinates. Section 5. Geographical Landmarks Wherever the words ‘‘nautical miles off shore’’ are used in this document, the distance is measured from the baseline from which the territorial sea is measured. Geographical landmarks referenced in this document are at the following locations: Cape Flattery, WA ........ Cape Alava, WA ........... Queets River, WA ........ Leadbetter Point, WA .. Cape Falcon, OR .......... Florence South Jetty, OR. Humbug Mountain, OR Oregon-California border. Humboldt South Jetty, CA. Horse Mountain, CA .... Point Arena, CA ........... Point Reyes, CA ........... Point San Pedro, CA .... Pigeon Point, CA .......... Point Sur, CA ............... Point Conception, CA .. 48°23′00″ 48°10′00″ 47°31′42″ 46°38′10″ 45°46′00″ 44°00′54″ N N N N N N lat. lat. lat. lat. lat. lat. 42°40′30″ N lat. 42°00′00″ N lat. 40°45′53″ N lat. 40°05′00″ 38°57′30″ 37°59′44″ 37°35′40″ 37°11′00″ 36°18′00″ 34°27′00″ N N N N N N N lat. lat. lat. lat. lat. lat. lat. jbell on DSK3GLQ082PROD with RULES Section 6. Inseason Notice Procedures Notice of inseason management actions will be provided by a telephone hotline administered by the West Coast Region, NMFS, 800–662–9825 or 206– 526–6667, and by USCG Notice to Mariners broadcasts. These broadcasts are announced on Channel 16 VHF–FM and 2182 KHz at frequent intervals. The announcements designate the channel or frequency over which the Notice to Mariners will be immediately broadcast. Inseason actions will also be published in the Federal Register as soon as practicable. Since provisions of these management measures may be altered by inseason actions, fishermen should monitor either the telephone hotline or USCG broadcasts for current information for the area in which they are fishing. Classification This final rule is necessary for conservation and management of Pacific coast salmon stocks and is consistent with the MSA and other applicable law. These regulations are being promulgated VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:48 May 03, 2019 Jkt 247001 under the authority of 16 U.S.C. 1855(d) and 16 U.S.C. 773(c). This final rule has been determined to be not significant for purposes of Executive Order 12866. The Assistant Administrator for Fisheries finds good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B), to waive the requirement for prior notice and opportunity for public comment, as such procedures would be impracticable and contrary to the public interest. The annual salmon management cycle traditionally begins May 1 and continues through April 30 of the following year. May 1 was chosen because the pre-May harvests constitute a relatively small portion of the annual catch. The time frame of the preseason process for determining the annual modifications to ocean salmon fishery management measures depends on when the pertinent biological data are available. Salmon stocks are managed to meet annual spawning escapement goals or specific exploitation rates. Achieving either of these objectives requires designing management measures that are appropriate for the ocean abundance predicted for that year. These pre-season abundance forecasts, which are derived from previous years’ observed spawning escapement, vary substantially from year to year, and are not available until January or February because spawning escapement continues through the fall. The preseason planning and public review process associated with developing Council recommendations is initiated in February as soon as the forecast information becomes available. The public planning process requires coordination of management actions of four states, numerous Indian tribes, and the Federal Government, all of which have management authority over the stocks. This complex process includes the affected user groups, as well as the general public. The process is compressed into a two-month period culminating with the April Council meeting at which the Council adopts a recommendation that is forwarded to NMFS for review, approval, and implementation of fishing regulations typically effective on May 1. For 2019, even with the waiver of notice and comment, NMFS does not expect the rule to be effective until May 6. This is because the Council scheduled final action on the 2019 management measures for April 15, too late to allow NMFS to complete the necessary regulatory process to review, approve, and implement these fishing regulations by the traditional May 1 date. This delay, which is occurring even with the waiver of notice and comment rulemaking, required NMFS to take PO 00000 Frm 00043 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 19741 inseason action to close fisheries that would have otherwise opened May 1 under 2018 management measures to avoid excessive impacts to certain stocks during the first week of fishing in 2019. Providing opportunity for prior notice and public comments on the Council’s recommended measures through a proposed and final rulemaking process would require 30 to 60 days in addition to the two-month period required for development of the regulations. Delaying implementation of annual fishing regulations, which are based on the current stock abundance projections, for an additional 60 days would require that fishing regulations for May and June be set in the previous year, without the benefit of information regarding current stock abundance. For the 2019 fishing regulations, the current stock abundance was not available to the Council until February. In addition, information related to northern fisheries and stock status in Alaska and Canada which is important to assessing the amount of available salmon in southern U.S. ocean fisheries is not available until mid- to late-March. Because a substantial amount of fishing normally occurs during May and June, managing the fishery with measures developed using the prior year’s data could have significant adverse effects on the managed stocks, including ESA-listed stocks. Although salmon fisheries that open prior to May are managed under measures developed the previous year, as modified by the Council at its March meeting, relatively little harvest occurs during that period (e.g., on average, less than 5 percent of commercial and recreational harvest occurred prior to May 1 during the years 2001 through 2017). Allowing the much more substantial harvest levels normally associated with the May and June salmon seasons to be promulgated under the prior year’s regulations would impair NMFS’ ability to protect weak and ESA-listed salmon stocks, and to provide harvest opportunity where appropriate. The choice of May 1 as the beginning of the regulatory season balances the need to gather and analyze the data needed to meet the management objectives of the Salmon FMP and the need to manage the fishery using the best available scientific information. If the 2019 measures are not in place on May 6, salmon fisheries will not open as scheduled. This would result in lost fishing opportunity, negative economic impacts, and confusion for the public as the state fisheries adopt concurrent regulations that conform to the Federal management measures. E:\FR\FM\06MYR1.SGM 06MYR1 19742 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 87 / Monday, May 6, 2019 / Rules and Regulations jbell on DSK3GLQ082PROD with RULES Overall, the annual population dynamics of the various salmon stocks require managers to adjust the season structure of the West Coast salmon fisheries to both protect weaker stocks and give fishers access to stronger salmon stocks, particularly hatchery produced fish. Failure to implement these measures immediately could compromise the status of certain stocks, or result in foregone opportunity to harvest stocks whose abundance has increased relative to the previous year thereby undermining the purpose of this agency action. In addition, these measures were developed with significant public input. Public comment was received and considered by the Council and NMFS throughout the process of developing these management measures. As described above, the Council took comment at its March and April meetings, and heard summaries of comments received at public meetings held between the March and April meetings in each of the coastal states. NMFS also invited comments in a notice published prior to the March Council meeting, and considered comments received by the Council through its representative on the Council. Based upon the above-described need to have these measures effective on May 6 and the fact that there is limited time available to implement these new measures after the final Council meeting in April and before the commencement of the 2019 ocean salmon fishing year on May 6, NMFS has concluded it is impracticable and contrary to the public interest to provide an opportunity for prior notice and public comment under 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B). The Assistant Administrator for Fisheries also finds that good cause exists under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3), to waive the 30-day delay in effectiveness of this final rule. As previously discussed, data were not available until February and management measures were not finalized until mid-April. These measures are essential to conserve threatened and endangered ocean salmon stocks as well as potentially overfished stocks, and to provide for harvest of more abundant stocks. Delaying the effectiveness of these VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:48 May 03, 2019 Jkt 247001 measures by 30 days could compromise the ability of some stocks to attain their conservation objectives, preclude harvest opportunity, and negatively impact anticipated international, state, and tribal salmon fisheries, thereby undermining the purposes of this agency action and the requirements of the MSA. To enhance the fishing industry’s notification of these new measures, and to minimize the burden on the regulated community required to comply with the new regulations, NMFS is announcing the new measures over the telephone hotline used for inseason management actions and is posting the regulations on its West Coast Region website (http:// www.westcoast.fisheries.noaa.gov). NMFS is also advising the states of Washington, Oregon, and California on the new management measures. These states announce the seasons for applicable state and Federal fisheries through their own public notification systems. Because prior notice and an opportunity for public comment are not required to be provided for this rule by 5 U.S.C. 553, or any other law, the analytical requirements of the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 601 et seq., are not applicable. Accordingly, no Regulatory Flexibility Analysis is required for this rule and none has been prepared. This action contains collection-ofinformation requirements subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA), and which have been approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under control number 0648–0433. The current information collection approval expires on August 30, 2020. The public reporting burden for providing notifications if landing area restrictions cannot be met is estimated to average 15 minutes per response. This estimate includes the time for reviewing instructions, searching existing data sources, gathering and maintaining the data needed, and completing and reviewing the collection of information. Notwithstanding any other provision of the law, no person is required to respond to, nor shall any person be subject to a penalty for failure to comply with, a collection of information subject to the requirements of the PRA, unless PO 00000 Frm 00044 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 9990 that collection of information displays a currently valid OMB control number. NMFS has current ESA biological opinions that cover fishing under these regulations on all listed salmon species. NMFS provided guidance on the impact limits for all ESA-listed salmon and steelhead species, given annual abundance projections, in our annual guidance letter to the Council dated March 5, 2019. The management measures for 2019 are consistent with the biological opinions. The Council’s recommended management measures therefore have been determined not likely to jeopardize the continued existence of any listed salmon species which may be affected by Council fisheries or adversely modify critical habitat. In some cases, the recommended measures are more restrictive than necessary for ESA compliance. NMFS consulted on the effects of the ocean salmon fisheries on the ESAlisted Southern Resident killer whale (SRKW) distinct population segment in 2009. As discussed above, NMFS has reinitiated consultation to consider new information. NMFS has assessed the potential impacts of the 2019 management measures to SRKW, and has made a determination under ESA sections 7(a)(2) and 7(d) that the 2019 fisheries are not likely to jeopardize SRKW, and do not represent an irreversible and irretrievable commitment of resources that would foreclose the formulation or implementation of any reasonable and prudent alternative measures. This final rule was developed after meaningful collaboration with the affected tribes. The tribal representative on the Council made the motion for the regulations that apply to the tribal fisheries. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 773–773k; 1801 et seq. Dated: April 29, 2019. Samuel D. Rauch III, Deputy Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Programs, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2019–09064 Filed 5–3–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P E:\FR\FM\06MYR1.SGM 06MYR1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 84, Number 87 (Monday, May 6, 2019)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 19729-19742]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2019-09064]



[[Page 19729]]

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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 660

[Docket No. 180702602-9400-01]
RIN 0648-BI05


Fisheries Off West Coast States; West Coast Salmon Fisheries; 
2019 Management Measures

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

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: Through this final rule, NMFS establishes fishery management 
measures for the 2019 ocean salmon fisheries off Washington, Oregon, 
and California and the 2020 salmon seasons opening earlier than May 1, 
2020. Specific fishery management measures vary by fishery and by area, 
and establish fishing areas, seasons, quotas, legal gear, recreational 
fishing days and catch limits, possession and landing restrictions, and 
minimum lengths for salmon taken in the U.S. exclusive economic zone 
(EEZ) (3-200 nautical miles (nmi)) off Washington, Oregon, and 
California. The management measures are intended to prevent overfishing 
and to apportion the ocean harvest equitably among treaty Indian, non-
treaty commercial, and recreational fisheries. The measures are also 
intended to allow a portion of the salmon runs to escape the ocean 
fisheries in order to provide for spawning escapement and to provide 
fishing opportunity for inside fisheries (fisheries occurring in state 
internal waters).

DATES: This final rule is effective from 0001 hours Pacific Daylight 
Time, May 6, 2019, until the effective date of the 2020 management 
measures, which NOAA will publish in the Federal Register.

ADDRESSES: The documents cited in this document are available on the 
Pacific Fishery Management Council's (Council's) website 
(www.pcouncil.org).

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Peggy Mundy at 206-526-4323.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    The ocean salmon fisheries in the EEZ off Washington, Oregon, and 
California are managed under a ``framework'' FMP. Regulations at 50 CFR 
part 660, subpart H, provide the mechanism for making preseason and 
inseason adjustments to the management measures, within limits set by 
the FMP, by notification in the Federal Register. 50 CFR 660.408, in 
addition to the FMP, governs the establishment of annual management 
measures.
    The management measures for the 2019 and pre-May 2020 ocean salmon 
fisheries that are implemented in this final rule were recommended by 
the Council at its April 9 to 16, 2019, meeting.

Process Used To Establish 2019 Management Measures

    The Council announced its annual preseason management process for 
the 2019 ocean salmon fisheries in the Federal Register on February 11, 
2019 (84 FR 3145), and on the Council's website at www.pcouncil.org. 
NMFS published an additional notice of opportunities to submit public 
comments on the 2019 ocean salmon fisheries in the Federal Register on 
February 14, 2019 (84 FR 4049). These notices announced the 
availability of Council documents, the dates and locations of Council 
meetings and public hearings comprising the Council's complete schedule 
of events for determining the annual proposed and final modifications 
to ocean salmon fishery management measures, and instructions on how to 
comment on the development of the 2019 ocean salmon fisheries. The 
agendas for the March and April Council meetings were published in the 
Federal Register (84 FR 3763, February 13, 2019, and 84 FR 5421, 
February 21, 2019, respectively) and posted on the Council's website 
prior to the actual meetings.
    In accordance with the FMP, the Council's Salmon Technical Team 
(STT) and staff economist prepared four reports for the Council, its 
advisors, and the public. All four reports were made available on the 
Council's website upon their completion. The first of the reports, 
``Review of 2018 Ocean Salmon Fisheries,'' was prepared in February 
when the first increment of scientific information necessary for 
crafting management measures for the 2019 and pre-May 2020 ocean salmon 
fisheries became available. The first report summarizes biological and 
socio-economic data for the 2018 ocean salmon fisheries and assesses 
the performance of the fisheries with respect to the Council's 2018 
management objectives as well as providing historical information for 
comparison. The second report, ``Preseason Report I Stock Abundance 
Analysis and Environmental Assessment Part 1 for 2019 Ocean Salmon 
Fishery Regulations'' (PRE I), provides the 2019 salmon stock abundance 
projections and analyzes the impacts on the stocks and Council 
management goals if the 2018 regulations and regulatory procedures were 
applied to the projected 2019 stock abundances. The completion of PRE I 
is the initial step in developing and evaluating the full suite of 
preseason alternatives.
    Following completion of the first two reports, the Council met in 
Vancouver, WA, from March 6 to 12, 2019, to develop 2019 management 
alternatives for proposal to the public. The Council proposed three 
alternatives for commercial, recreational, and treaty Indian fisheries 
management for analysis and public comment. These alternatives 
consisted of various combinations of management measures designed to 
ensure that stocks of coho and Chinook salmon meet conservation goals, 
and to provide for ocean harvests of more abundant stocks. After the 
March Council meeting, the Council's STT and staff economist prepared a 
third report, ``Preseason Report II Proposed Alternatives and 
Environmental Assessment Part 2 for 2019 Ocean Salmon Fishery 
Regulations'' (PRE II), which analyzes the effects of the proposed 2019 
management alternatives.
    The Council sponsored public hearings to receive testimony on the 
proposed alternatives on March 25, 2019, in Westport, WA, and Coos Bay, 
OR; and on March 26, 2019, in Ukiah, CA. The States of Washington, 
Oregon, and California sponsored meetings in various fora that also 
collected public testimony, which was then presented to the Council by 
each state's Council representative. The Council also received public 
testimony at both the March and April meetings and received written 
comments at the Council office and electronic submissions via the 
Council's electronic portal.
    The Council met from April 9 to 16, 2019, in Rohnert Park, CA, to 
adopt its final 2019 salmon management recommendations. Following the 
April Council meeting, the Council's STT and staff economist prepared a 
fourth report, ``Preseason Report III Analysis of Council-Adopted 
Management Measures for 2019 Ocean Salmon Fisheries'' (PRE III), which 
analyzes the environmental and socio-economic effects of the Council's 
final recommendations. After the Council took final action on the 
annual ocean salmon specifications in April, it transmitted the 
recommended management measures to NMFS, published them in its 
newsletter, and

[[Page 19730]]

posted them on the Council website (www.pcouncil.org).
    The annual salmon management cycle begins May 1 and continues 
through April 30 of the following year. This final rule is effective on 
May 6, rather than the traditional May 1 date, because the April 
Council meeting in 2019 occurred too late to allow NMFS to review, 
approve, and implement the Council's recommended management measures by 
May 1. The rule implementing the salmon fishery management measures in 
2018 was effective until the effective date of this 2019 rule (84 FR 
19005, May 1, 2018). The majority of fisheries recommended by the 
Council for 2019 begin after May 6, 2019, the effective date for this 
rule. Fisheries scheduled to begin before May 6, 2019, under the 
Council's recommended management measures are the commercial and 
recreational fisheries in the Monterey area (Pigeon Point to U.S./
Mexico Border); recreational fisheries between Cape Falcon, OR, and the 
Oregon/California Border; and treaty Indian troll fisheries. For 
purposes of analyzing the impacts of these fisheries on individual 
stocks relative to the applicable objectives in the FMP, Council 
analysts assumed fisheries prior to May 6, 2019, would be conducted 
under the 2018 management measures for the May 1 to May 6 time period, 
consistent with the effective date of the 2018 salmon management 
measures rule.

National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)

    The environmental assessment (EA) for this action comprises the 
Council's documents described above (PRE I, PRE II, and PRE III), 
providing analysis of environmental and socioeconomic effects under 
NEPA. The EA and its related Finding of No Significant Impact are 
posted on the NMFS West Coast Region website 
(www.westcoast.fisheries.noaa.gov).

Resource Status

Stocks of Concern

    The FMP requires that the fisheries be shaped to meet escapement-
based Annual Catch Limits (ACLs), Endangered Species Act (ESA) 
consultation requirements, obligations of the Pacific Salmon Treaty 
(PST) between the U.S. and Canada, and other conservation objectives 
detailed in the FMP. Because the ocean salmon fisheries are mixed-stock 
fisheries, this requires ``weak stock'' management to avoid exceeding 
limits for the stocks with the most constraining limits. Abundance 
forecasts for individual salmon stocks can vary significantly from one 
year to the next; therefore, the stocks that constrain the fishery in 
one year may differ from those that constrain the fishery in the next. 
For 2019, limits for five stocks are the most constraining on the 
fisheries; these are described below.
    Fisheries south of Cape Falcon, OR, are limited in 2019 primarily 
by conservation concerns for Klamath River fall-run Chinook salmon 
(KRFC), Sacramento River fall-run Chinook salmon (SRFC), and ESA 
conservation requirements for California Coastal Chinook salmon (CCC). 
Both KRFC and SRFC stocks were determined in 2018 to be overfished, and 
the Council is developing rebuilding plans intended to be implemented 
in 2020. Fisheries north of Cape Falcon are limited primarily to meet 
ESA conservation requirements for Puget Sound Chinook salmon. Meeting 
ocean escapement objectives for Upper Columbia River summer-run Chinook 
salmon will further constrain fisheries north and south of Cape Falcon. 
The limitations imposed in order to protect these stocks are described 
below. The alternatives and the Council's recommended management 
measures for 2019 were designed to avoid exceeding these limitations. 
The Queets, Juan de Fuca, and Snohomish coho stocks were determined in 
2018 to be overfished, and the Council is developing rebuilding plans 
for these stocks, intended to be implemented in 2020; meeting 
conservation objectives for these three stocks will not constrain 
fisheries in 2019.
    Klamath River fall-run Chinook salmon (KRFC): Abundance for this 
non-ESA-listed stock in recent years has been historically low, and the 
stock is currently overfished based on spawning escapement in 2015, 
2016, and 2017. The FMP defines ``overfished'' status in terms of a 
three-year geometric mean escapement level and whether it is below the 
minimum stock size threshold. Forecast abundance for KRFC has improved 
since the record low in 2017, and in 2019 fisheries will be managed to 
meet the FMP conservation objective, a maximum sustainable yield 
spawning escapement goal (SMSY) of 40,700 natural area 
spawners. Fisheries south of Cape Falcon, particularly in the Klamath 
Management Zone (KMZ) from Humbug Mountain, OR to Humboldt South Jetty, 
CA, will be somewhat constrained to meet this goal, but less so than in 
2017 when there was a complete closure of commercial and recreational 
ocean salmon fishing in the KMZ.
    Sacramento River fall-run Chinook salmon (SRFC): SRFC is not an 
ESA-listed stock; however, abundance for this stock in recent years has 
been low compared with its conservation objective and this stock is 
currently overfished based on spawning escapement in 2015, 2016, and 
2017. The abundance forecast for SRFC in 2019 is somewhat higher than 
in the previous three years. However, preseason abundance forecasts for 
SRFC have tended to be optimistic and exploitation rates underestimated 
in recent years, when compared to postseason abundance estimates. For 
example, during the period 2014 through 2018, the preseason abundance 
forecast for SRFC was, on average, 33 percent higher than the post 
season abundance estimate, and preseason exploitation rate forecasts 
averaged 32 percent lower than the postseason exploitation rate 
estimates. In order to be conservative given the frequent upward bias 
in the abundance forecasts, underestimation of exploitation rates, and 
the fact that SRFC are overfished, the Council has recommended 
fisheries to achieve a spawning escapement of 160,000 which is toward 
the higher end of the FMP Conservation Objective range (122,000 to 
180,000 natural and hatchery adult spawners). Meeting this risk averse 
spawning escapement goal will constrain fisheries south of Cape Falcon 
in 2019, but should provide increased fishing opportunity and economic 
benefit to many fishery dependent communities in Oregon and California 
when compared to recent years.
    Upper Columbia River summer-run Chinook salmon: Abundance forecast 
of this non-ESA-listed stock in 2019 is 35,900, which is less than half 
of the average for the past decade, 78,000 (2009-2018). Fisheries north 
and south of Cape Falcon will be somewhat constrained in 2019 to meet 
the ocean escapement objective set under the 2018 U.S. v. Oregon 
Management Agreement.
    California Coastal Chinook salmon (CCC)--ESA-listed Threatened: In 
2000, NMFS consulted under ESA section 7 on the effects of the ocean 
salmon fishing conducted in accordance with the FMP on the California 
Coastal Chinook salmon Evolutionarily Significant Unit (ESU). NMFS 
concluded in a biological opinion dated April 28, 2000, that these 
fisheries would jeopardize the continued existence of CCC and provided 
a reasonable and prudent alternative (RPA) that included limiting 
annual harvest impacts on age-four KRFC to no more than 16 percent, as 
a surrogate for CCC. NMFS re-initiated consultation in 2005, and 
reaffirmed the 2000 RPA; therefore, the 16 percent impact rate on age-
four KRFC remains in place as an RPA under ESA section 7. Meeting this

[[Page 19731]]

impact rate in 2019 will constrain fisheries south of Cape Falcon, 
particularly in the KMZ from Humbug Mountain, OR to Humboldt South 
Jetty, CA.
    Puget Sound Chinook--ESA-listed Threatened: Impacts on threatened 
Puget Sound Chinook from Council-managed fisheries are addressed 
through a 2004 biological opinion. Generally, these impacts are quite 
low and within the range contemplated in the 2004 opinion. However, 
because Puget Sound Chinook are also impacted by fisheries in Puget 
Sound and associated freshwater fisheries (collectively referred to as 
``inside'' fisheries), the Council and NMFS usually consider the 
impacts of Council-area and inside fisheries on Puget Sound Chinook 
together, and they base their analysis of the combined fishery impacts 
on a package of Puget Sound fisheries to which the State of Washington 
and Indian tribes with treaty rights to fish in Puget Sound have agreed 
through a negotiation process that runs concurrent with the Council's 
salmon season planning process. In 2019, fisheries north of Cape Falcon 
will be constrained to avoid jeopardy to the Puget Sound Chinook salmon 
ESU, when combined with inside fisheries.

Other Resource Issues

    The Southern Resident Killer Whale distinct population segment 
(SRKW) is listed under the Endangered Species Act as endangered (70 FR 
69903, November 18, 2005). NMFS issued a biological opinion analyzing 
the effects of the ocean salmon fisheries on SRKW in 2009; the opinion 
concluded that these fisheries are not likely to jeopardize SRKW. Since 
the 2009 biological opinion was issued, there has been considerable 
research on the status of SRKW and the importance of the availability 
of Chinook salmon, their primary prey, to their survival and recovery. 
NMFS reinitiated consultation on the effects of the ocean salmon 
fisheries to SRKW on April 12, 2019. To inform the new consultation, 
the Council formed an ad hoc workgroup including salmon and SRKW 
experts at its April 2019 meeting and endorsed a schedule for the 
workgroup culminating in final Council action for adoption of a 
preferred alternative recommendation on the fishery assessment and any 
conservation measure(s) or management tool(s) to address the impacts of 
the fishery to SRKW in November 2019. NMFS would expect to complete the 
reinitiated consultation in time to inform the 2020 management measures 
for the fisheries.
    Pending completion of the reinitiated consultation, NMFS assessed 
the potential effects of the 2019 fisheries on SRKW and reported on 
that assessment at the April Council meeting. The assessment included 
consideration of all information currently available relating to the 
impacts of the alternatives the Council was considering for the 2019 
ocean salmon fisheries on the overall abundance of Chinook salmon 
available to SRKW, and specifically on Chinook salmon stocks designated 
as draft priority stocks for SRKW prey purposes in a 2018 report 
prepared by NMFS and the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife. 
For the assessment, salmon abundance was ranked in ``quartiles'' of 
low, middle, and high abundance compared with a 25-year retrospective 
time period, 1992 through 2016. The assessment determined that the 2019 
preseason overall coastal and inland Chinook salmon abundance is likely 
to fall within the middle range of abundance, when compared to the 
period 1992 through 2016. The assessment also evaluated fishery 
reductions in Chinook salmon abundance and estimated that the 
recommended 2019 management measure would fall in the middle range when 
compared to 1992 through 2016.
    Abundance forecasts in 2019 for 14 of 16 priority prey Chinook 
salmon stocks contributing to Council-area salmon fisheries are in the 
middle or upper quartiles of abundance when compared to the period 1992 
through 2016. Although two priority stocks (Lower Columbia River and 
Upper Willamette spring-run Chinook salmon) are anticipated to have low 
abundance in 2019 relative to previous years, these stocks are minor 
contributors to the catch of PFMC ocean salmon fisheries, and we do not 
anticipate the 2019 Council-area salmon fisheries would substantially 
reduce the availability of those priority Chinook prey stocks to SRKW. 
Furthermore, the overall forecast composition in 2019 contains a higher 
proportion of Chinook salmon stocks that are considered to be higher 
priority than the average composition in the retrospective time period 
(1992 through 2016). Based on that assessment, NMFS made a 
determination that, consistent with sections 7(a)(2) and 7(d) of the 
ESA, this action will not jeopardize any listed species, would not 
adversely modify designated critical habitat, and will not result in 
any irreversible or irretrievable commitment of resources that would 
have the effect of foreclosing the formulation or implementation of any 
reasonable and prudent alternative measures (NMFS 2019).
    Prior to and during the March Council meeting, the Hoopa Valley 
Tribe, which has salmon fishing rights on the Klamath River, objected 
to a change to the model input the Council's Salmon Technical Team 
started using in 2018 to estimate the impacts of ocean fisheries to 
Southern Oregon/Northern California Coast coho (SONCC coho). The SONCC 
coho ESU is listed as threatened under the ESA (62 FR 24588, May 6, 
1997). In 1999, NMFS consulted on the effects to SONCC coho, and other 
ESA-listed salmon ESUs, from implementing the Salmon FMP. In our 
biological opinion, we determined that the fisheries were likely to 
jeopardize the continued existence of the SONCC coho salmon ESU and 
developed an RPA that requires fisheries management measures developed 
under the Salmon FMP achieve an ocean exploitation rate on Rogue/
Klamath coho salmon (the indicator for the SONCC coho ESU) of no more 
than 13 percent. The Tribe submitted comments to NMFS and the Council 
process, alleging that the change to the model input was inappropriate 
and triggered reinitiation of consultation. NMFS West Coast Region has 
responded in writing to the Tribe, and in the Council record, that it 
does not agree that the change to the model input triggered 
reinitiation of consultation (Thom 2019). Further, we believe the new 
model input is consistent with the best available scientific 
information and allows for more accurate assessment of fishery impacts 
to SONCC coho. The Council's recommended management measures for 2019 
meet the RPA requirements for SONCC coho.

Annual Catch Limits and Status Determination Criteria

    Annual Catch Limits (ACLs) are set for two Chinook salmon stocks, 
SRFC and KRFC, and one coho stock, Willapa Bay natural coho. The 
Chinook salmon stocks are indicator stocks for the Central Valley Fall 
Chinook complex and the Southern Oregon/Northern California Chinook 
complex, respectively. The Far North Migrating Coastal Chinook complex 
includes a group of Chinook salmon stocks that are caught primarily in 
fisheries north of Cape Falcon, Oregon, and other fisheries that occur 
north of the U.S./Canada border. No ACL is set for these stocks because 
they are managed subject to provisions of the PST between the U.S. and 
Canada. Other Chinook salmon stocks caught in fisheries north of Cape 
Falcon are ESA-listed or hatchery produced, and are managed consistent 
with ESA consultations or hatchery goals. Willapa Bay natural coho is 
the

[[Page 19732]]

only coho stock for which an ACL is set, as the other coho stocks in 
the FMP are either ESA-listed, hatchery produced, or managed under the 
PST.
    ACLs for salmon stocks are escapement-based, which means they 
establish a number of adults that must escape the fisheries to return 
to the spawning grounds. ACLs are set based on the annual potential 
spawner abundance forecast and a fishing rate reduced to account for 
scientific uncertainty. For SRFC in 2019, the overfishing limit (OFL) 
is SOFL = 379,632 (potential spawner abundance forecast) 
multiplied by 1-FMSY (1-0.78) or 83,519 returning spawners 
(FMSY is the fishing mortality rate that would result in 
maximum sustainable yield--MSY). SABC is 379,632 multiplied 
by 1-FABC (1-0.70) (FMSY reduced for scientific 
uncertainty = 0.70) or 113,890. The SACL is set equal to 
SABC, i.e., 113,890 spawners. The adopted management 
measures provide for a projected SRFC spawning escapement of 160,159. 
For KRFC in 2019, SOFL is 87,893 (potential spawner 
abundance forecast) multiplied by 1-FMSY (1-0.71), or 25,489 
returning spawners. SABC is 87,893 multiplied by 1-
FABC (1-0.68) (FMSY reduced for scientific 
uncertainty = 0.68) or 28,126 returning spawners. SACL is 
set equal to SABC, i.e., 28,126 spawners. The adopted 
management measures provide for a projected KRFC spawning escapement of 
40,700. For Willapa Bay natural coho in 2019, SOFL = 91,843 
(potential spawner abundance forecast) multiplied by 1-FMSY 
(1-0.74) or 23,879 returning spawners. SABC is 91,843 
multiplied by 1-FABC (1-0.70) (FMSY reduced for 
scientific uncertainty = 0.70) or 27,553. SACL is set equal 
to SABC, i.e., 27,553 spawners. The adopted management 
measures provide for a projected Willapa Bay natural coho ocean 
escapement of 56,300. In summary, for 2019, projected abundance of the 
three stocks with ACLs (SRFC, KRFC, and Willapa Bay natural coho), in 
combination with the constraints for ESA-listed and non-ESA-listed 
stocks, are expected to result in escapements greater than required to 
meet the ACLs for all three stocks with defined ACLs.
    As explained in more detail above under ``Stocks of Concern,'' 
fisheries north and south of Cape Falcon are constrained by impact 
limits necessary to protect ESA-listed salmon stocks including CCC and 
Puget Sound Chinook salmon, to meet conservation objectives for non-
listed KRFC and SRFC, and to meet the ocean escapement objective for 
non-listed Upper Columbia River Summer Chinook. For KRFC and SRFC, FMP 
conservation objectives provide for higher escapement than 2019 ACLs.

Public Comments

    The Council invited written comments on developing 2019 salmon 
management measures in their notice announcing public meetings and 
hearings (84 FR 3145, February 11, 2019). At its March meeting, the 
Council adopted three alternatives for 2019 salmon management measures 
having a range of quotas, season structure, and impacts, from the least 
restrictive in Alternative I to the most restrictive in Alternative 
III. These alternatives are described in detail in PRE II. 
Subsequently, comments were taken at three public hearings held in 
March, staffed by representatives of the Council and NMFS. The Council 
received 152 written comments on 2019 ocean salmon fisheries via their 
electronic portal and an additional 3,142 comments related to salmon 
management and SRKW. The three public hearings were attended by a total 
of 106 people; 43 people provided oral comments. Comments came from 
individual fishers, fishing associations, fish buyers, and processors. 
Written and oral comments addressed the 2019 management alternatives 
described in PRE II, and generally expressed preferences for a specific 
alternative or for particular season structures as well as concern over 
economic impacts of restricting fisheries for conservation of weak 
stocks. All comments were included in the Council's briefing book for 
their April 2019 meeting and were considered by the Council, which 
includes a representative from NMFS, in developing the recommended 
management measures transmitted to NMFS on April 24, 2019. In addition 
to comments collected at the public hearings and those submitted 
directly to the Council, several people provided oral comments at the 
April 2019 Council meeting. NMFS also invited comments to be submitted 
directly to the Council or to NMFS, via the Federal Rulemaking Portal 
(www.regulations.gov) in a notice (84 FR 4049, February 14, 2019).
    Comments on alternatives for fisheries north of Cape Falcon. For 
fisheries north of Cape Falcon, Alternative I was favored by most 
commercial and recreational fishery commenters at the public hearing in 
Westport, WA. A variety of specific comments were made on a variety 
topics such as season lengths and landing restrictions. The Council 
adopted an alternative that is within the range of the alternatives 
considered.
    Comments on alternatives for fisheries south of Cape Falcon. 
Comments on the alternatives for fisheries south of Cape Falcon tended 
to support a blend of Alternatives I and II. The importance of economic 
impacts to fishers and their communities was mentioned in several 
comments. Two people testified at the Council's April meeting on their 
support for the commercial Point Reyes to Point San Pedro (Fall Area 
Target Zone) fishery in Alternative I. Public comment was also provided 
at the April meeting supporting a fishery regime that would result in a 
spawning escapement for SRFC of 160,000. The Council adopted an 
alternative within the range of alternatives considered, including the 
Fall Area Target Zone fishery and a spawning escapement for SRFC of 
160,000.
    Comments on incidental halibut retention in the commercial salmon 
fisheries. At its March meeting, the Council identified three 
alternatives for landing limits for incidentally caught halibut that 
are retained in the salmon troll fishery. The alternatives included: 
(1) A range of trip limits for halibut possession and landing, (2) two 
alternatives for the ratio of halibut to Chinook salmon landed in a 
trip, and (3) the number of halibut that could be retained prior to 
catching any Chinook salmon. There were few comments received on the 
halibut alternatives, focused on ensuring the fishery was managed to 
allow access to the entire IPHC allocation. The Council adopted an 
alternative for incidental halibut retention that is within the range 
of the alternatives considered.
    Comments from federally recognized tribes, including treaty tribe 
representatives. At its March and April meetings, the Council heard 
testimony from members of several federally recognized tribes including 
tribes with treaty rights for salmon harvest; additional comments were 
submitted in writing. There was strong concern expressed by all tribal 
representatives about environmental conditions that are deleterious to 
salmon survival. Comments were also made regarding predation on 
salmonids by pinnipeds and double-crested cormorants, especially in the 
Columbia River and the importance of providing salmon passage above 
dams on the Upper Columbia River.
    Comments on SRKW. At the Westport public hearing, the April Council 
meeting, and through electronic submissions, there were comments in 
favor of 2019 ocean salmon management that increases the abundance and 
availability of Chinook salmon for SRKW, including the recommendation

[[Page 19733]]

of providing a specific allocation of Chinook salmon for the whales. 
After considering information provided by NMFS on the potential effects 
of the 2019 fishery alternatives to SRKW, the Council recommended 
management measures that do not provide additional measures to ensure 
prey abundance beyond what is needed to ensure all limits and 
objectives required for salmon stocks are met.
    The Council, including the NMFS representative, took all of these 
comments into consideration. The Council's final recommendation 
generally includes aspects of all three alternatives, while taking into 
account the best available scientific information and ensuring that 
fisheries are consistent with impact limits for ESA-listed stocks, 
ACLs, PST obligations, other ESA requirements, and tribal fishing 
rights.

Management Measures

    The Council's recommended ocean harvest levels and management 
measures for the 2019 fisheries are designed to apportion the burden of 
protecting the weak stocks identified and discussed in PRE I equitably 
among ocean fisheries and to allow maximum harvest of natural and 
hatchery runs surplus to inside fishery and spawning needs. NMFS finds 
the Council's recommendations to be responsive to the goals of the FMP, 
the requirements of the resource, and the socioeconomic factors 
affecting resource users. The recommendations are consistent with the 
requirements of the MSA, U.S. obligations to Indian tribes with 
federally recognized fishing rights, and U.S. international obligations 
regarding Pacific salmon. The Council's recommended management measures 
are consistent with the proposed actions analyzed in NMFS' ESA 
consultations for those ESA-listed salmon species that may be affected 
by Council fisheries, and are otherwise consistent with ESA 
obligations. Accordingly, NMFS, through this final rule, approves and 
implements the Council's recommendations.
    North of Cape Falcon, 2019 management measures for non-Indian 
commercial troll and recreational fisheries have somewhat decreased 
quotas for Chinook salmon compared to 2018; coho quotas are 
substantially higher than in 2018.
    Quotas for the 2019 treaty-Indian commercial troll fishery North of 
Cape Falcon are 35,000 Chinook salmon and 55,000 coho in ocean 
management areas and Washington State Statistical Area 4B combined. 
These quotas provide somewhat fewer Chinook salmon and substantially 
more coho than in 2018. The treaty-Indian commercial fisheries include 
a May and June fishery with a quota of 17,500 Chinook, and a July and 
August fishery, with quotas of 17,500 Chinook and 55,000 coho.
    South of Cape Falcon, commercial troll and recreational fishery 
management measures are are shaped to meet conservation and management 
goals for KRFC and SRFC spawning escapement and fishery impact 
limitations for CCC. Commercial and recreational fisheries south of 
Cape Falcon will be directed primarily at Chinook salmon; commercial 
fisheries south of Cape Falcon will have no coho retention.
    The timing of the March and April Council meetings makes it 
impracticable for the Council to recommend fishing seasons that begin 
before May 1 of the same year. Therefore, this action also establishes 
the 2020 fishing seasons that open earlier than May 1. The Council 
recommended, and NMFS concurs, that the commercial season off Oregon 
from Cape Falcon to the Oregon/California border, the commercial season 
off California from Horse Mountain to Point Arena, the recreational 
season off Oregon from Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain, and the 
recreational season off California from Horse Mountain to the U.S./
Mexico border will open in 2020 as indicated in the ``Season 
Description'' section of this document. At the March 2020 meeting, NMFS 
may take inseason action, if recommended by the Council or the states, 
to adjust the commercial and recreational seasons prior to May 1 in the 
areas off Oregon and California.
    The following sections set out the management regime for the ocean 
salmon fishery. Open seasons and days are described in Sections 1, 2, 
and 3 of the 2019 management measures. Inseason closures in the 
commercial and recreational fisheries are announced on the NMFS hotline 
and through the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) Notice to Mariners as described 
in Section 6. Other inseason adjustments to management measures are 
also announced on the hotline and through the Notice to Mariners. 
Inseason actions will also be published in the Federal Register as soon 
as practicable.
    The following are the management measures recommended by the 
Council, approved, and implemented here for 2019 and, as specified, for 
2020.

Section 1. Commercial Management Measures for 2019 Ocean Salmon 
Fisheries

    Parts A, B, and C of this section contain restrictions that must be 
followed for lawful participation in the fishery. Part A identifies 
each fishing area and provides the geographic boundaries from north to 
south, the open seasons for the area, the salmon species allowed to be 
caught during the seasons, and any other special restrictions effective 
in the area. Part B specifies minimum size limits. Part C specifies 
special requirements, definitions, restrictions, and exceptions.

A. Season Description

North of Cape Falcon, OR
--U.S./Canada Border to Cape Falcon
    May 6 through the earlier of June 28 or 13,200 Chinook, no more 
than 5,000 of which may be caught in the area between the U.S./Canada 
border and the Queets River and no more than 1,800 of which may be 
caught in the area between Leadbetter Point and Cape Falcon (C.8). Open 
seven days per week (C.1). In the area between the U.S./Canada border 
and the Queets River: During the period May 6 through May 15 the 
landing and possession limit is 100 Chinook per vessel for the open 
period, during the period May 16 through June 28 the landing and 
possession limit is 50 Chinook per vessel per landing week (Thursday 
through Wednesday) (C.1, C.6). In the area between Leadbetter Point and 
Cape Falcon: During the period May 6 through May 15 the landing and 
possession limit is 100 Chinook per vessel for the open period, during 
the period May 16 through June 28 the landing and possession limit is 
50 Chinook per vessel per landing week (Thursday through Wednesday) 
(C.1, C.6). All salmon except coho may be retained (C.4, C.7). Chinook 
minimum size limit of 28 inches total length (B). See compliance 
requirements (C.1) and gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3).
    When it is projected that approximately 60 percent of the overall 
Chinook guideline has been landed, or approximately 60 percent of the 
Chinook subarea guideline has been landed in the area between the U.S./
Canada border and the Queets River, or approximately 60 percent of the 
Chinook subarea guideline has been landed in the area between 
Leadbetter Point and Cape Falcon, inseason action will be considered to 
ensure the guideline is not exceeded.
    July 1 through the earlier of September 30 or 13,050 Chinook or 
30,400 marked coho (C.8). Open seven days per week. All salmon may be 
retained, except no chum retention north of Cape Alava, Washington, in 
August and September (C.4, C.7).

[[Page 19734]]

Chinook minimum size limit of 28 inches total length. Coho minimum size 
limit of 16 inches total length (B, C.1). All coho must be marked with 
a healed adipose fin clip (C.8.d). See compliance requirements (C.1) 
and gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). Landing and 
possession limit of 150 marked coho per vessel per landing week 
(Thursday through Wednesday) (C.1).
    For all commercial troll fisheries north of Cape Falcon: Mandatory 
closed areas include: Salmon Troll Yelloweye Rockfish Conservation Area 
(YRCA), Cape Flattery and Columbia Control Zones, and, beginning August 
12, Grays Harbor Control Zone (C.5). Vessels must land and deliver 
their salmon within 24 hours of any closure of this fishery. Vessels 
fishing or in possession of salmon north of Leadbetter Point must land 
and deliver all species of fish in a Washington port and must possess a 
Washington troll license. Vessels may not land fish east of the Sekiu 
River or east of the Megler-Astoria Bridge. For delivery to Washington 
ports south of Leadbetter Point, vessels must notify the Washington 
Department of Fish and Wildlife at 360-249-1215 prior to crossing the 
Leadbetter Point line with area fished, total Chinook, coho, and 
halibut catch aboard, and destination with approximate time of 
delivery. During any single trip, only one side of the Leadbetter Point 
line may be fished (C.11). Vessels fishing or in possession of salmon 
south of Leadbetter Point must land and deliver all species of fish 
within the area and south of Leadbetter Point, except that Oregon 
permitted vessels may also land all species of fish in Garibaldi, OR. 
Under state law, vessels must report their catch on a state fish 
receiving ticket. Oregon State regulations require all fishers landing 
salmon into Oregon from any fishery between Leadbetter Point, WA, and 
Cape Falcon, OR, to notify Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife 
(ODFW) within one hour of delivery or prior to transport away from the 
port of landing by either calling 541-867-0300 ext. 271 or sending 
notification via email to [email protected]. Notification 
shall include vessel name and number, number of salmon by species, port 
of landing and location of delivery, and estimated time of delivery. 
Inseason actions may modify harvest guidelines in later fisheries to 
achieve or prevent exceeding the overall allowable troll harvest 
impacts (C.8). Vessels in possession of salmon north of the Queets 
River may not cross the Queets River line without first notifying WDFW 
at 360-249-1215 with area fished, total Chinook, coho, and halibut 
catch aboard, and destination. Vessels in possession of salmon south of 
the Queets River may not cross the Queets River line without first 
notifying WDFW at 360-249-1215 with area fished, total Chinook, coho, 
and halibut catch aboard, and destination.
South of Cape Falcon, OR
--Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain
    April 20-30;
    May 6-30;
    June 1-August 29;
    September 1-October 31 (C.9.a).
    Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained 
(C.4, C.7). Chinook minimum size limit of 28 inches total length (B, 
C.1). All vessels fishing in the area must land their fish in the state 
of Oregon. See gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). Beginning 
September 1, no more than 75 Chinook allowed per vessel per landing 
week (Thursday through Wednesday).
    In 2020, the season will open March 15 for all salmon except coho. 
Chinook minimum size limit of 28 inches total length. Gear restrictions 
same as in 2019. This opening could be modified following Council 
review at its March 2020 meeting.
--Humbug Mountain to Oregon/California Border (Oregon KMZ)
    April 20-30;
    May 6-30;
    June 1 through the earlier of June 30, or a 3,200 Chinook quota;
    July 1 through the earlier of July 31, or a 2,500 Chinook quota;
    August 1 through the earlier of August 29, or a 1,200 Chinook 
quota; (C.9.a).
    Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained 
(C.4, C.7). Chinook minimum size limit of 28 inches total length (B, 
C.1). See compliance requirements (C.1) and gear restrictions and 
definitions (C.2, C.3). Prior to June 1, all salmon caught in this area 
must be landed and delivered in the state of Oregon. June 1 through 
August 29 weekly landing and possession limit of 50 Chinook per vessel 
per landing week (Thursday through Wednesday). Any remaining portion of 
Chinook quotas may be transferred inseason on an impact neutral basis 
to the next open quota period (C.8.b). All vessels fishing in this area 
during June, July, and August must land and deliver all salmon within 
this area or into Port Orford, within 24 hours of any closure of this 
fishery, and prior to fishing outside of this area. For all quota 
managed seasons (June, July, and August), Oregon state regulations 
require fishers to notify ODFW within one hour of landing and prior to 
transport away from the port of landing by calling 541-867-0300 
extension 252 or sending notification via email to 
[email protected], with vessel name and number, number of 
salmon by species, location of delivery, and estimated time of 
delivery.
    In 2020, the season will open March 15 for all salmon except coho. 
Chinook minimum size limit of 28 inches total length. Gear restrictions 
same as in 2019. This opening could be modified following Council 
review at its March 2020 meeting.
--Oregon/California Border to Humboldt South Jetty (California KMZ)
    June 1 through the earlier of June 30, or a 2,500 Chinook quota;
    July 1 through the earlier of July 30, or a 2,500 Chinook quota;
    August 2 through the earlier of August 31, or a 2,000 Chinook quota 
(C.9.b).
    Open five days per week (Friday through Tuesday). All salmon except 
coho may be retained (C.4, C.7). Chinook minimum size limit of 27 
inches total length (B, C.1). Landing and possession limit of 20 
Chinook per vessel per day (C.8.f). Any remaining portion of Chinook 
quotas may be transferred inseason on an impact neutral basis to the 
next open quota period (C.8.b). All fish caught in this area must be 
landed within the area, within 24 hours of any closure of the fishery, 
and prior to fishing outside the area (C.10). See compliance 
requirements (C.1) and gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). 
Klamath Control Zone closed (C.5.e). See California State regulations 
for additional closures adjacent to the Smith and Klamath Rivers.
--Humboldt South Jetty to Horse Mountain
    Closed.
    For all commercial fisheries south of Cape Falcon: when the fishery 
is closed between the Oregon/California border and Humbug Mountain and 
open to the south, vessels with fish on board caught in the open area 
off California may seek temporary mooring in Brookings, OR, prior to 
landing in California, only if such vessels first notify the Chetco 
River Coast Guard Station via VHF channel 22A between the hours of 0500 
and 2200 and provide the vessel name, number of fish on board, and 
estimated time of arrival (C.6).
--Horse Mountain to Point Arena (Fort Bragg)
    June 4-30;
    July 11-31;
    August 1-28 (C.9.b).

[[Page 19735]]

    Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained 
(C.4, C.7). Chinook minimum size limit of 27 inches total length (B, 
C.1). See compliance requirements (C.1) and gear restrictions and 
definitions (C.2, C.3). All salmon must be landed in California. All 
salmon caught in the area must be landed and offloaded no later than 
11:59 p.m., August 30 (C.6). When the California KMZ fishery is open, 
all fish caught in the area must be landed south of Horse Mountain 
until the California KMZ fishery has been closed for at least 24 hours 
(C.6).
    In 2020, the season will open April 16-30 for all salmon except 
coho, with a 27 inch Chinook minimum size limit and the same gear 
restrictions as in 2019. All salmon caught in the area must be landed 
in the area. This opening could be modified following Council review at 
its March 2020 meeting.
--Point Arena to Pigeon Point (San Francisco)
    May 16-31;
    June 4-30;
    July 11-31;
    August 1-28;
    September 1-30 (C.9.b).
    Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained 
(C.4, C.7). Chinook minimum size limit of 27 inches total length (B, 
C.1). See compliance requirements (C.1) and gear restrictions and 
definitions (C.2, C.3). All salmon must be landed in California. All 
salmon caught in the area prior to September 1 must be landed and 
offloaded no later than 11:59 p.m., August 30 (C.6). When the 
California KMZ fishery is open, all fish caught in the area must be 
landed south of Horse Mountain until the California KMZ fishery has 
been closed for at least 24 hours (C.6).
 Point Reyes to Point San Pedro (Fall Area Target Zone)
    October 1-4, 7-11, 14-15.
    Open five days per week, Monday through Friday. All salmon except 
coho may be retained (C.4, C.7). Chinook minimum size limit of 27 
inches total length (B, C.1). All salmon caught in this area must be 
landed between Point Arena and Pigeon Point (C.6). See compliance 
requirements (C.1) and gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3).
--Pigeon Point to U.S./Mexico Border (Monterey)
    May 1-31;
    June 4-30;
    July 11-31 (C.9.b).
    Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained 
(C.4, C.7). Chinook minimum size limit of 27 inches total length (B, 
C.1). See compliance requirements (C.1) and gear restrictions and 
definitions (C.2, C.3). All fish must be landed in California. All 
salmon caught in the area must be landed and offloaded no later than 
11:59 p.m., August 5 (C.6). When the California KMZ fishery is open, 
all fish caught in the area must be landed south of Horse Mountain 
until the California KMZ fishery has been closed for at least 24 hours 
(C.6).
    For all commercial troll fisheries in California: California State 
regulations require all salmon be made available to a California 
Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) representative for sampling 
immediately at port of landing. Any person in possession of a salmon 
with a missing adipose fin, upon request by an authorized agent or 
employee of the CDFW, shall immediately relinquish the head of the 
salmon to the state (California Fish and Game Code Sec.  8226).

B. Minimum Size (Inches) (See C.1)

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                           Chinook                          Coho
       Area (when open)       ----------------------------------------------------------------        Pink
                                Total length      Head-off      Total length      Head-off
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
North of Cape Falcon, OR.....            28.0            21.5              16              12  None.
Cape Falcon to Humbug                    28.0            21.5  ..............  ..............  None.
 Mountain.
Humbug Mountain to OR/CA                 28.0            21.5  ..............  ..............  None.
 border.
OR/CA border to Humboldt                 27.0            20.5  ..............  ..............  27.
 South Jetty.
Horse Mountain to Point Arena            27.0            20.5  ..............  ..............  27.
Point Arena to Pigeon Point..            27.0            20.5  ..............  ..............  27.
Pigeon Point to U.S./Mexico              27.0            20.5  ..............  ..............  27.
 border.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Metric equivalents: 28.0 in. = 71.1 cm, 27.0 in. = 68.5 cm, 21.5 in. = 54.6 cm, 20.5 in. = 52.1 cm, 16.0 in. =
  .40.6 cm, and 12.0 in. = .30.5 cm.

C. Requirements, Definitions, Restrictions, or Exceptions

C.1. Compliance With Minimum Size or Other Special Restrictions
    All salmon on board a vessel must meet the minimum size, landing/
possession limit, or other special requirements for the area being 
fished and the area in which they are landed if the area is open or has 
been closed less than 48 hours for that species of salmon. Salmon may 
be landed in an area that has been closed for a species of salmon more 
than 48 hours only if they meet the minimum size, landing/possession 
limit, or other special requirements for the area in which they were 
caught. Salmon may not be filleted prior to landing.
    Any person who is required to report a salmon landing by applicable 
state law must include on the state landing receipt for that landing 
both the number and weight of salmon landed by species. States may 
require fish landing/receiving tickets be kept on board the vessel for 
90 days or more after landing to account for all previous salmon 
landings.
C.2. Gear Restrictions
    a. Salmon may be taken only by hook and line using single point, 
single shank, barbless hooks.
    b. Cape Falcon, OR, to the Oregon/California border: no more than 4 
spreads are allowed per line.
    c. Oregon/California border to U.S./Mexico border: no more than 6 
lines are allowed per vessel, and barbless circle hooks are required 
when fishing with bait by any means other than trolling.
C.3. Gear Definitions
    Trolling defined: Fishing from a boat or floating device that is 
making way by means of a source of power, other than drifting by means 
of the prevailing water current or weather conditions.
    Troll fishing gear defined: One or more lines that drag hooks 
behind a moving fishing vessel engaged in trolling. In that portion of 
the fishery management area off Oregon and Washington, the line or 
lines must be affixed to the vessel and must not be intentionally 
disengaged from the vessel at any time during the fishing operation.
    Spread defined: A single leader connected to an individual lure 
and/or bait.
    Circle hook defined: A hook with a generally circular shape and a 
point which turns inward, pointing directly to the shank at a 90[deg] 
angle.

[[Page 19736]]

C.4. Vessel Operation in Closed Areas With Salmon on Board
    a. Except as provided under C.4.b below, it is unlawful for a 
vessel to have troll or recreational gear in the water while in any 
area closed to fishing for a certain species of salmon, while 
possessing that species of salmon; however, fishing for species other 
than salmon is not prohibited if the area is open for such species, and 
no salmon are in possession.
    b. When Genetic Stock Identification (GSI) samples will be 
collected in an area closed to commercial salmon fishing, the 
scientific research permit holder shall notify NOAA Office of Law 
Enforcement, USCG, CDFW, WDFW, and Oregon State Police at least 24 
hours prior to sampling and provide the following information: The 
vessel name, date, location, and time collection activities will be 
done. Any vessel collecting GSI samples in a closed area shall not 
possess any salmon other than those from which GSI samples are being 
collected. Salmon caught for collection of GSI samples must be 
immediately released in good condition after collection of samples.
C.5. Control Zone Definitions
    a. Cape Flattery Control Zone--The area from Cape Flattery 
(48[deg]23'00'' N lat.) to the northern boundary of the U.S. EEZ; and 
the area from Cape Flattery south to Cape Alava (48[deg]10'00'' N lat.) 
and east of 125[deg]05'00'' W long.
    b. Salmon Troll YRCA (50 CFR 660.70(c))--The area in Washington 
Marine Catch Area 3 from 48[deg]00.00' N lat.; 125[deg]14.00' W long. 
to 48[deg]02.00' N lat.; 125[deg]14.00' W long. to 48[deg]02.00' N 
lat.; 125[deg]16.50' W long. to 48[deg]00.00' N lat.; 125[deg]16.50' W 
long. and connecting back to 48[deg]00.00' N lat.; 125[deg]14.00' W 
long.
    c. Grays Harbor Control Zone--The area defined by a line drawn from 
the Westport Lighthouse (46[deg]53'18'' N lat., 124[deg] 07'01'' W 
long.) to Buoy #2 (46[deg]52'42'' N lat., 124[deg]12'42'' W long.) to 
Buoy #3 (46[deg]55'00'' N lat., 124[deg]14'48'' W long.) to the Grays 
Harbor north jetty (46[deg]55'36'' N lat., 124[deg]10'51'' W long.).
    d. Columbia Control Zone--An area at the Columbia River mouth, 
bounded on the west by a line running northeast/southwest between the 
red lighted Buoy #4 (46[deg]13'35'' N lat., 124[deg]06'50'' W long.) 
and the green lighted Buoy #7 (46[deg]15'09' N lat., 124[deg]06'16'' W 
long.); on the east, by the Buoy #10 line which bears north/south at 
357[deg] true from the south jetty at 46[deg]14'00'' N 
lat.,124[deg]03'07'' W long. to its intersection with the north jetty; 
on the north, by a line running northeast/southwest between the green 
lighted Buoy #7 to the tip of the north jetty (46[deg]15'48'' N lat., 
124[deg]05'20'' W long.) and then along the north jetty to the point of 
intersection with the Buoy #10 line; and, on the south, by a line 
running northeast/southwest between the red lighted Buoy #4 and tip of 
the south jetty (46[deg]14'03'' N lat., 124[deg]04'05'' W long.), and 
then along the south jetty to the point of intersection with the Buoy 
#10 line.
    e. Klamath Control Zone--The ocean area at the Klamath River mouth 
bounded on the north by 41[deg]38'48'' N lat. (approximately 6 nautical 
miles north of the Klamath River mouth); on the west by 124[deg]23'00'' 
W long. (approximately 12 nautical miles off shore); and on the south 
by 41[deg]26'48'' N lat. (approximately 6 nautical miles south of the 
Klamath River mouth).
C.6. Notification When Unsafe Conditions Prevent Compliance With 
Regulations
    If prevented by unsafe weather conditions or mechanical problems 
from meeting special management area landing restrictions, vessels must 
notify the USCG and receive acknowledgment of such notification prior 
to leaving the area. This notification shall include the name of the 
vessel, port where delivery will be made, approximate number of salmon 
(by species) on board, the estimated time of arrival, and the specific 
reason the vessel is not able to meet special management area landing 
restrictions.
    In addition to contacting the USCG, vessels fishing south of the 
Oregon/California border must notify CDFW within one hour of leaving 
the management area by calling 800-889-8346 and providing the same 
information as reported to the USCG. All salmon must be offloaded 
within 24 hours of reaching port.
C.7. Incidental Halibut Harvest
    During authorized periods, the operator of a vessel that has been 
issued an incidental halibut harvest license by the International 
Pacific Halibut Commission (IPHC) may retain Pacific halibut caught 
incidentally in Area 2A while trolling for salmon. Halibut retained 
must be no less than 32 inches in total length, measured from the tip 
of the lower jaw with the mouth closed to the extreme end of the middle 
of the tail, and must be landed with the head on. When halibut are 
caught and landed incidental to commercial salmon fishing by an IPHC 
license holder, any person who is required to report the salmon landing 
by applicable state law must include on the state landing receipt for 
that landing both the number of halibut landed, and the total dressed, 
head-on weight of halibut landed, in pounds, as well as the number and 
species of salmon landed.
    License applications for incidental harvest must be obtained from 
the IPHC (phone: 206-634-1838). Applicants must apply prior to mid-
March 2020 for 2020 permits (exact date to be set by the IPHC in early 
2020). Incidental harvest is authorized only during April, May, and 
June of the 2019 troll seasons and after June 30 in 2019 if quota 
remains and if announced on the NMFS hotline (phone: 800-662-9825 or 
206-526-6667). WDFW, ODFW, and CDFW will monitor landings. If the 
landings are projected to exceed the IPHC's 44,899 pound preseason 
allocation or the total Area 2A non-Indian commercial halibut 
allocation, NMFS will take inseason action to prohibit retention of 
halibut in the non-Indian salmon troll fishery.
    May 1, 2019, until the end of the 2019 salmon troll season, and 
April 1-30, 2020, license holders may land or possess no more than one 
Pacific halibut per each two Chinook, except one Pacific halibut may be 
possessed or landed without meeting the ratio requirement, and no more 
than 35 halibut may be possessed or landed per trip. Pacific halibut 
retained must be no less than 32 inches in total length (with head on). 
IPHC license holders must comply with all applicable IPHC regulations.
    Incidental Pacific halibut catch regulations in the commercial 
salmon troll fishery adopted for 2019, prior to any 2019 inseason 
action, will be in effect when incidental Pacific halibut retention 
opens on April 1, 2020, unless otherwise modified by inseason action at 
the March 2020 Council meeting.
    a. ``C-shaped'' YRCA is an area to be voluntarily avoided for 
salmon trolling. NMFS and the Council request salmon trollers 
voluntarily avoid this area in order to protect yelloweye rockfish. The 
area is defined in the Pacific Council Halibut Catch Sharing Plan in 
the North Coast subarea (Washington marine area 3), with the following 
coordinates in the order listed:
    48[deg]18' N lat.; 125[deg]18' W long.;
    48[deg]18' N lat.; 124[deg]59' W long.;
    48[deg]11' N lat.; 124[deg]59' W long.;
    48[deg]11' N lat.; 125[deg]11' W long.;
    48[deg]04' N lat.; 125[deg]11' W long.;
    48[deg]04' N lat.; 124[deg]59' W long.;
    48[deg]00' N lat.; 124[deg]59' W long.;
    48[deg]00' N lat.; 125[deg]18' W long.;
    and connecting back to 48[deg]18' N lat.; 125[deg]18' W long.
C.8. Inseason Management
    In addition to standard inseason actions or modifications already 
noted

[[Page 19737]]

under the season description, the following inseason guidance applies:
    a. Chinook remaining from the May through June non-Indian 
commercial troll harvest guideline north of Cape Falcon may be 
transferred to the July through September harvest guideline if the 
transfer would not result in exceeding preseason impact expectations on 
any stocks.
    b. Chinook remaining from the May, June, and/or July non-Indian 
commercial troll quotas in the Oregon or California KMZ may be 
transferred to the Chinook quota for the next open quota period if the 
transfer would not result in exceeding preseason impact expectations on 
any stocks.
    c. NMFS may transfer salmon between the recreational and commercial 
fisheries north of Cape Falcon if there is agreement among the areas' 
representatives on the Salmon Advisory Subpanel (SAS), and if the 
transfer would not result in exceeding preseason impact expectations on 
any stocks.
    d. At the March 2020 meeting, the Council will consider inseason 
recommendations for special regulations for any experimental fisheries 
(proposals must meet Council protocol and be received in November 
2019).
    e. If retention of unmarked coho (adipose fin intact) is permitted 
by inseason action, the allowable coho quota will be adjusted to ensure 
preseason projected impacts on all stocks is not exceeded.
    f. Landing limits may be modified inseason to sustain season length 
and keep harvest within overall quotas.
C.9. State Waters Fisheries
    Consistent with Council management objectives:
    a. The State of Oregon may establish additional late-season 
fisheries in state waters.
    b. The State of California may establish limited fisheries in 
selected state waters. Check state regulations for details.
    C.10. For the purposes of California Fish and Game Code, Section 
8232.5, the definition of the KMZ for the ocean salmon season shall be 
that area from Humbug Mountain, Oregon, to Horse Mountain, California.
    C.11. Latitudes for geographical reference of major landmarks along 
the West Coast are listed in Section 5 of this rule.

Section 2. Recreational Management Measures for 2019 Ocean Salmon 
Fisheries

    Parts A, B, and C of this section contain restrictions that must be 
followed for lawful participation in the fishery. Part A identifies 
each fishing area and provides the geographic boundaries from north to 
south, the open seasons for the area, the salmon species allowed to be 
caught during the seasons, and any other special restrictions effective 
in the area. Part B specifies minimum size limits. Part C specifies 
special requirements, definitions, restrictions and exceptions.

A. Season Description

North of Cape Falcon, OR
--U.S./Canada Border to Cape Alava (Neah Bay Subarea)
    June 22 through earlier of September 30 or 16,600 marked coho 
subarea quota, with a subarea guideline of 5,200 Chinook (C.5).
    Open seven days per week. All salmon may be retained, except no 
chum beginning August 1; two salmon per day. All coho must be marked 
with a healed adipose fin clip (B, C.1). Beginning August 1, Chinook 
non-retention east of the Bonilla-Tatoosh line (C.4.a) during Council 
managed ocean fishery. See gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, 
C.3). Inseason management may be used to sustain season length and keep 
harvest within the overall Chinook and coho recreational total 
allowable catches (TACs) for north of Cape Falcon (C.5).
--Cape Alava to Queets River (La Push Subarea)
    June 22 through earlier of September 30, or 4,050 marked coho 
subarea quota with a subarea guideline of 1,100 Chinook (C.5).
    October 1 through earlier of October 13, or 100 marked coho quota, 
or 100 Chinook quota (C.5) in the area north of 47[deg]50'00'' N lat. 
and south of 48[deg]00'00'' N lat.
    Open seven days per week. All salmon may be retained; two salmon 
per day. All coho must be marked with a healed adipose fin clip (C.1). 
See gear restrictions and definitions (B, C.2, C.3). Inseason 
management may be used to sustain season length and keep harvest within 
the overall Chinook and coho recreational TACs for north of Cape Falcon 
(C.5).
--Queets River to Leadbetter Point (Westport Subarea)
    June 22 through earlier of September 30 or 59,050 marked coho 
subarea quota, with a subarea guideline of 12,700 Chinook (C.5).
    Open seven days per week. All salmon may be retained; two salmon 
per day, no more than one of which may be a Chinook. All coho must be 
marked with a healed adipose fin clip (B, C.1). See gear restrictions 
and definitions (C.2, C.3). Grays Harbor Control Zone closed beginning 
August 12 (C.4.b). Inseason management may be used to sustain season 
length and keep harvest within the overall Chinook and coho 
recreational TACs for north of Cape Falcon (C.5).
--Leadbetter Point to Cape Falcon (Columbia River Subarea)
    June 22 through earlier of September 30 or 79,800 marked coho 
subarea quota, with a subarea guideline of 7,150 Chinook (C.5).
    Open seven days per week. All salmon may be retained; two salmon 
per day, no more than one of which may be a Chinook. All coho must be 
marked with a healed adipose fin clip (B, C.1). See gear restrictions 
and definitions (C.2, C.3). Columbia Control Zone closed (C.4.c). 
Inseason management may be used to sustain season length and keep 
harvest within the overall Chinook and coho recreational TACs for north 
of Cape Falcon (C.5).
South of Cape Falcon, OR
--Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain
    March 15 through October 31 (C.6), except as provided below during 
the all-salmon mark-selective coho fishery and the non-mark-selective 
coho fishery (C.5).
    Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained; 
two salmon per day (C.1). Chinook minimum size limit of 24 inches total 
length (B). See gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3).
    In 2020, the season will open March 15 for all salmon except coho; 
two salmon per day (C.1). Chinook minimum size limit of 24 inches total 
length (B); and the same gear restrictions as in 2019 (C.2, C.3). This 
opening could be modified following Council review at the March 2020 
Council meeting.
--Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain
    Mark-selective coho fishery: June 22 through the earlier of August 
25, or 90,000 marked coho quota (C.6). Open seven days per week. All 
salmon may be retained; two salmon per day. All retained coho must be 
marked with a healed adipose fin clip (C.1). See minimum size limits 
(B). See gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). Any remainder of 
the mark-selective coho quota may be transerred inseason on an impact 
neutral basis to the non-selective coho quota from Cape Falcon to 
Humbug Mountain (C.5).
    Non-mark-selective coho fishery: August 31-September 30, open each

[[Page 19738]]

Friday through Sunday, or 9,000 non-mark-selective coho quota (C.6). 
Open days may be modified inseason (C.5). All salmon may be retained, 
two salmon per day (C.1). See minimum size limits (B). See gear 
restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3).
--Humbug Mountain to Oregon/California Border (Oregon KMZ)
    May 25-September 2 (C.6).
    Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained, 
except as described above in the Cape Falcon to Oregon/California 
border all-salmon mark-selective coho fishery. Two salmon per day 
(C.1). Chinook minimum size limit of 24 inches total length (B). See 
gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3).
    For recreational fisheries from Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain: 
Fishing in the Stonewall Bank YRCA restricted to trolling only on days 
the all depth recreational halibut fishery is open (call the halibut 
fishing hotline 800-662-9825 for specific dates) (C.3.b, C.4.d).
--Oregon/California Border to Horse Mountain (California KMZ)
    May 25-September 2 (C.6).
    Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained; 
two salmon per day (C.1). Chinook minimum size limit of 20 inches total 
length (B). See gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3). Klamath 
Control Zone closed in August (C.4.e). See California State regulations 
for additional closures adjacent to the Smith, Eel, and Klamath Rivers.
--Horse Mountain to Point Arena (Fort Bragg)
    April 13-30;
    May 18-October 31 (C.6).
    Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained; 
two salmon per day (C.1). Chinook minimum size limit of 20 inches total 
length (B). See gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3).
    In 2020, season opens April 4 for all salmon except coho, two 
salmon per day (C.1). Chinook minimum size limit of 20 inches total 
length (B); and the same gear restrictions as in 2019 (C.2, C.3). This 
opening could be modified following Council review at the March 2020 
Council meeting.
--Point Arena to Pigeon Point (San Francisco)
    April 13-30;
    May 18-October 31 (C.6).
    Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained; 
two salmon per day (C.1). Chinook minimum size limit of 24 inches total 
length through April 30, then 20 inches thereafter (B). See gear 
restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3).
    In 2020, season opens April 4 for all salmon except coho; two 
salmon per day (C.1). Chinook minimum size limit of 24 inches total 
length (B); and the same gear restrictions as in 2019 (C.2, C.3). This 
opening could be modified following Council review at the March 2020 
Council meeting.
--Pigeon Point to U.S./Mexico Border (Monterey)
    April 6-August 28 (C.6).
    Open seven days per week. All salmon except coho may be retained; 
two salmon per day (C.1). Chinook minimum size limit of 24 inches total 
length (B). See gear restrictions and definitions (C.2, C.3).
    In 2020, season opens April 4 for all salmon except coho; two 
salmon per day (C.1). Chinook minimum size limit of 24 inches total 
length (B); and the same gear restrictions as in 2019 (C.2, C.3). This 
opening could be modified following Council review at the March 2020 
Council meeting.
    California State regulations require all salmon be made available 
to a CDFW representative for sampling immediately at port of landing. 
Any person in possession of a salmon with a missing adipose fin, upon 
request by an authorized agent or employee of the CDFW, shall 
immediately relinquish the head of the salmon to the state (California 
Code of Regulations Title 14 Section 1.73).

B. Minimum Size (Total Length in Inches) (See C.1)

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
               Area (when open)                    Chinook          Coho                      Pink
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
North of Cape Falcon.........................            24.0            16.0  None.
Cape Falcon to Humbug Mt.....................            24.0            16.0  None.
Humbug Mt. to OR/CA border...................            24.0            16.0  None.
OR/CA border to Horse Mt.....................            20.0  ..............  20.0.
Horse Mt. to Pt. Arena.......................            20.0  ..............  20.0.
Pt. Arena to Pigeon Pt. (April 13-30)........            24.0  ..............  24.0.
Pt. Arena to Pigeon Pt. (May 18-October 31)..            20.0  ..............  20.0.
Pigeon Pt. to U.S./Mexico border.............            24.0  ..............  24.0.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Metric equivalents: 24.0 in. = 61.0 cm, 20.0 in. = 50.8 cm, and 16.0 in. = 40.6 cm.

C. Requirements, Definitions, Restrictions, or Exceptions

C.1. Compliance With Minimum Size and Other Special Restrictions
    All salmon on board a vessel must meet the minimum size or other 
special requirements for the area being fished and the area in which 
they are landed if that area is open. Salmon may be landed in an area 
that is closed only if they meet the minimum size or other special 
requirements for the area in which they were caught. Salmon may not be 
filleted prior to landing.
    Ocean Boat Limits: Off the coast of Washington, Oregon, and 
California, each fisher aboard a vessel may continue to use angling 
gear until the combined daily limits of Chinook and coho salmon for all 
licensed and juvenile anglers aboard have been attained (additional 
state restrictions may apply).
C.2. Gear Restrictions
    Salmon may be taken only by hook and line using barbless hooks. All 
persons fishing for salmon, and all persons fishing from a boat with 
salmon on board, must meet the gear restrictions listed below for 
specific areas or seasons.
    a. U.S./Canada border to Point Conception, California: No more than 
one rod may be used per angler; and no more than two single point, 
single shank barbless hooks are required for all fishing gear.
    b. Horse Mountain, California, to Point Conception, California: 
Single point, single shank, barbless circle hooks (see gear definitions 
below) are required when fishing with bait by any means other than 
trolling, and no more than two such hooks shall be used. When angling 
with two hooks, the distance between the hooks must not exceed five 
inches when measured from the top of the eye of the top hook to the 
inner base of the curve of the lower hook, and both hooks must be 
permanently tied in place (hard tied).

[[Page 19739]]

Circle hooks are not required when artificial lures are used without 
bait.
C.3. Gear Definitions
    a. Recreational fishing gear defined: Off Oregon and Washington, 
angling tackle consists of a single line that must be attached to a rod 
and reel held by hand or closely attended; the rod and reel must be 
held by hand while playing a hooked fish. No person may use more than 
one rod and line while fishing off Oregon or Washington. Off 
California, the line must be attached to a rod and reel held by hand or 
closely attended; weights directly attached to a line may not exceed 
four pounds (1.8 kg). While fishing off California north of Point 
Conception, no person fishing for salmon, and no person fishing from a 
boat with salmon on board, may use more than one rod and line. Fishing 
includes any activity which can reasonably be expected to result in the 
catching, taking, or harvesting of fish.
    b. Trolling defined: Angling from a boat or floating device that is 
making way by means of a source of power, other than drifting by means 
of the prevailing water current or weather conditions.
    c. Circle hook defined: A hook with a generally circular shape and 
a point which turns inward, pointing directly to the shank at a 90[deg] 
angle.
C.4. Control Zone Definitions
    a. The Bonilla-Tatoosh Line: A line running from the western end of 
Cape Flattery to Tatoosh Island Lighthouse (48[deg]23'30'' N lat., 
124[deg]44'12'' W long.) to the buoy adjacent to Duntze Rock 
(48[deg]24'37'' N lat., 124[deg]44'37'' W long.), then in a straight 
line to Bonilla Point (48[deg]35'39'' N lat., 124[deg]42'58'' W long.) 
on Vancouver Island, British Columbia.
    b. Grays Harbor Control Zone--The area defined by a line drawn from 
the Westport Lighthouse (46[deg]53'18'' N lat., 124[deg]07'01'' W 
long.) to Buoy #2 (46[deg]52'42'' N lat., 124[deg]12'42'' W long.) to 
Buoy #3 (46[deg]55'00'' N lat., 124[deg]14'48'' W long.) to the Grays 
Harbor north jetty (46[deg]55'36'' N lat., 124[deg]10'51'' W long.).
    c. Columbia Control Zone: An area at the Columbia River mouth, 
bounded on the west by a line running northeast/southwest between the 
red lighted Buoy #4 (46[deg]13'35'' N lat., 124[deg]06'50'' W long.) 
and the green lighted Buoy #7 (46[deg]15'09' N lat., 124[deg]06'16'' W 
long.); on the east, by the Buoy #10 line which bears north/south at 
357[deg] true from the south jetty at 46[deg]14'00'' N lat., 
124[deg]03'07'' W long. to its intersection with the north jetty; on 
the north, by a line running northeast/southwest between the green 
lighted Buoy #7 to the tip of the north jetty (46[deg]15'48'' N lat., 
124[deg]05'20'' W long.) and then along the north jetty to the point of 
intersection with the Buoy #10 line; and on the south, by a line 
running northeast/southwest between the red lighted Buoy #4 and tip of 
the south jetty (46[deg]14'03'' N lat., 124[deg]04'05'' W long.), and 
then along the south jetty to the point of intersection with the Buoy 
#10 line.
    d. Stonewall Bank YRCA: The area defined by the following 
coordinates in the order listed:
    44[deg]37.46' N lat.; 124[deg]24.92' W long.
    44[deg]37.46' N lat.; 124[deg]23.63' W long.
    44[deg]28.71' N lat.; 124[deg]21.80' W long.
    44[deg]28.71' N lat.; 124[deg]24.10' W long.
    44[deg]31.42' N lat.; 124[deg]25.47' W long.
    and connecting back to 44[deg]37.46' N lat.; 124[deg]24.92' W long.
    e. Klamath Control Zone: The ocean area at the Klamath River mouth 
bounded on the north by 41[deg]38'48'' N lat. (approximately 6 nautical 
miles north of the Klamath River mouth); on the west by 124[deg]23'00'' 
W long. (approximately 12 nautical miles off shore); and, on the south 
by 41[deg]26'48'' N lat. (approximately 6 nautical miles south of the 
Klamath River mouth).
C.5. Inseason Management
    Regulatory modifications may become necessary inseason to meet 
preseason management objectives such as quotas, harvest guidelines, and 
season duration. In addition to standard inseason actions or 
modifications already noted under the season description, the following 
inseason guidance applies:
    a. Actions could include modifications to bag limits, or days open 
to fishing, or extensions or reductions in areas open to fishing.
    b. Coho may be transferred inseason among recreational subareas 
north of Cape Falcon to help meet the recreational season duration 
objectives (for each subarea) after conferring with representatives of 
the affected ports and the Council's SAS recreational representatives 
north of Cape Falcon, and if the transfer would not result in exceeding 
preseason impact expectations on any stocks.
    c. Chinook and coho may be transferred between the recreational and 
commercial fisheries north of Cape Falcon if there is agreement among 
the representatives of the SAS, and if the transfer would not result in 
exceeding preseason impact expectations on any stocks.
    d. Fishery managers may consider inseason action modifying 
regulations restricting retention of unmarked (adipose fin intact) 
coho. To remain consistent with preseason expectations, any inseason 
action shall consider, if significant, the difference between observed 
and preseason forecasted (adipose-clipped) mark rates. Such a 
consideration may also include a change in bag limit of two salmon, no 
more than one of which may be a coho.
    e. Marked coho remaining from the Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain 
recreational mark-selective coho quota may be transferred inseason to 
the Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain non-mark-selective recreational 
fishery if the transfer would not result in exceeding preseason impact 
expectations on any stocks.
C.6. Additional Seasons in State Territorial Waters
    Consistent with Council management objectives, the States of 
Washington, Oregon, and California may establish limited seasons in 
state waters. Check state regulations for details.

Section 3. Treaty Indian Management Measures for 2019 Ocean Salmon 
Fisheries

    Parts A, B, and C of this section contain requirements that must be 
followed for lawful participation in the fishery.

A. Season Descriptions

    May 1 through the earlier of June 30 or 17,500 Chinook quota.
    All salmon may be retained except coho. If the Chinook quota is 
exceeded, the excess will be deducted from the later all-salmon season 
(C.5). See size limit (B) and other restrictions (C).
    July 1 through the earlier of September 15, or 17,500 Chinook 
quota, or 55,000 coho quota.
    All salmon. See size limit (B) and other restrictions (C).

B. Minimum Size (Inches)

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                              Chinook                           Coho
                Area (when open)                 -----------------------------------------------------------------                  Pink
                                                   Total length       Head-off      Total length      Head-off
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
North of Cape Falcon............................            24.0            18.0             16.0            12.0  None.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Metric equivalents: 24.0 in. = 61.0 cm, 18.0 in. = 45.7 cm, 16.0 in. = 40.6 cm, 12.0 in. = 30.5 cm.


[[Page 19740]]

C. Requirements, Restrictions, and Exceptions

C.1. Tribe and Area Boundaries
    All boundaries may be changed to include such other areas as may 
hereafter be authorized by a Federal court for that tribe's treaty 
fishery.
    S'KLALLAM--Washington State Statistical Area 4B (defined to include 
those waters of Puget Sound easterly of a line projected from the 
Bonilla Point Light on Vancouver Island to the Tatoosh Island light, 
thence to the most westerly point on Cape Flattery and westerly of a 
line projected true north from the fishing boundary marker at the mouth 
of the Sekiu River [WAC 220-301-030]).
    MAKAH--Washington State Statistical Area 4B and that portion of the 
fishery management area (FMA) north of 48[deg]02'15'' N lat. (Norwegian 
Memorial) and east of 125[deg]44'00'' W long.
    QUILEUTE--A polygon commencing at Cape Alava, located at latitude 
48[deg]10'00'' north, longitude 124[deg]43'56.9'' west; then proceeding 
west approximately forty nautical miles at that latitude to a 
northwestern point located at latitude 48[deg]10'00'' north, longitude 
125[deg]44'00'' west; then proceeding in a southeasterly direction 
mirroring the coastline at a distance no farther than 40 nmi from the 
mainland Pacific coast shoreline at any line of latitude, to a 
southwestern point at latitude 47[deg]31'42'' north, longitude 
125[deg]20'26'' west; then proceeding east along that line of latitude 
to the Pacific coast shoreline at latitude 47[deg]31'42'' north, 
longitude 124[deg]21'9.0'' west (per court order dated March 5, 2018, 
Federal District Court for the Western District of Washington).
    HOH--That portion of the FMA between 47[deg]54'18'' N lat. 
(Quillayute River) and 47[deg]21'00'' N lat. (Quinault River) and east 
of 125[deg]44'00'' W long.
    QUINAULT--A polygon commencing at the Pacific coast shoreline near 
Destruction Island, located at latitude 47[deg]40'06'' north, longitude 
124[deg]23'51.362'' west; then proceeding west approximately 30 nmi at 
that latitude to a northwestern point located at latitude 
47[deg]40'06'' north, longitude 125[deg]08'30'' west; then proceeding 
in a southeasterly direction mirroring the coastline no farther than 30 
nmi from the mainland Pacific coast shoreline at any line of latitude 
southwestern point at latitude 46[deg]53'18'' north, longitude 
124[deg]53'53'' west; then proceeding east along that line of latitude 
to the Pacific coast shoreline at latitude 46[deg]53'18'' north, 
longitude 124[deg]7'36.6'' west (per court order dated March 5, 2018, 
Federal District Court for the Western District of Washington).
C.2. Gear Restrictions
    a. Single point, single shank, barbless hooks are required in all 
fisheries.
    b. No more than eight fixed lines per boat.
    c. No more than four hand held lines per person in the Makah area 
fishery (Washington State Statistical Area 4B and that portion of the 
FMA north of 48[deg]02'15'' N lat. (Norwegian Memorial) and east of 
125[deg]44'00'' W long.).
C.3. Quotas
    a. The quotas include troll catches by the S'Klallam and Makah 
tribes in Washington State Statistical Area 4B from May 1 through 
September 15.
    b. The Quileute Tribe will continue a ceremonial and subsistence 
fishery during the time frame of October 1 through October 15 in the 
same manner as in 2004-2015. Fish taken during this fishery are to be 
counted against treaty troll quotas established for the 2019 season 
(estimated harvest during the October ceremonial and subsistence 
fishery: 20 Chinook; 40 coho).
C.4. Area Closures
    a. The area within a six nautical mile radius of the mouths of the 
Queets River (47[deg]31'42'' N lat.) and the Hoh River (47[deg]45'12'' 
N lat.) will be closed to commercial fishing.
    b. A closure within two nautical miles of the mouth of the Quinault 
River (47[deg]21'00'' N. lat.) may be enacted by the Quinault Nation 
and/or the State of Washington and will not adversely affect the 
Secretary of Commerce's management regime.
C.5. Inseason Management
    In addition to standard inseason actions or modifications already 
noted under the season description, the following inseason guidance 
applies:
    a. Chinook remaining from the May through June treaty-Indian ocean 
troll harvest guideline north of Cape Falcon may be transferred to the 
July through September harvest guideline on a fishery impact equivalent 
basis.

Section 4. Halibut Retention

    Under the authority of the Northern Pacific Halibut Act, NMFS 
promulgated regulations governing the Pacific halibut fishery, which 
appear at 50 CFR part 300, subpart E. On March 14, 2019, NMFS published 
a final rule announcing the IPHC's regulations, including season dates, 
management measures, total allowable catch (TACs) for each IPHC 
management area including the U.S. West Coast (Area 2A) and Catch 
Sharing Plans for the U.S. waters off of Alaska (84 FR 9243). The Area 
2A Catch Sharing Plan, in combination with the IPHC regulations, 
provides that vessels participating in the salmon troll fishery in Area 
2A, which have obtained the appropriate IPHC license, may retain 
halibut caught incidentally during authorized periods in conformance 
with provisions published with the annual salmon management measures. A 
salmon troller may participate in the halibut incidental catch fishery 
during the salmon troll season or in the directed commercial fishery 
targeting halibut, but not both.
    The following measures have been approved by the IPHC, and 
implemented by NMFS. During authorized periods, the operator of a 
vessel that has been issued an incidental halibut harvest license may 
retain Pacific halibut caught incidentally in Area 2A while trolling 
for salmon. Halibut retained must be no less than 32 inches (81.28 cm) 
in total length, measured from the tip of the lower jaw with the mouth 
closed to the extreme end of the middle of the tail, and must be landed 
with the head on.
    License applications for incidental harvest must be obtained from 
the IPHC (phone: 206-634-1838). Applicants must apply prior to mid-
March 2020 for 2020 permits (exact date to be set by the IPHC in early 
2020). Incidental harvest is authorized only during April, May, and 
June of the 2019 troll seasons and after June 30 in 2019 if quota 
remains and if announced on the NMFS hotline (phone: 800-662-9825 or 
800-526-6667). WDFW, ODFW, and CDFW will monitor landings. If the 
landings are projected to exceed the 44,899 pound preseason allocation 
or the total Area 2A non-Indian commercial halibut allocation, NMFS 
will take inseason action to prohibit retention of halibut in the non-
Indian salmon troll fishery.
    May 1, 2019, until the end of the 2019 salmon troll season, and 
April 1-30, 2020, license holders may land or possess no more than one 
Pacific halibut per each two Chinook, except one Pacific halibut may be 
possessed or landed without meeting the ratio requirement, and no more 
than 35 halibut may be possessed or landed per trip. Pacific halibut 
retained must be no less than 32 inches in total length (with head on). 
IPHC license holders must comply with all applicable IPHC regulations.
    Incidental Pacific halibut catch regulations in the commercial 
salmon troll fishery adopted for 2019, prior to any 2019 inseason 
action, will be in effect when incidental Pacific halibut retention 
opens on April 1, 2020, unless

[[Page 19741]]

otherwise modified by inseason action at the March 2020 Council 
meeting.
    NMFS and the Council request that salmon trollers voluntarily avoid 
a ``C-shaped'' YRCA (also known as the Salmon Troll YRCA) in order to 
protect yelloweye rockfish. Coordinates for the Salmon Troll YRCA are 
defined at 50 CFR 660.70(a) in the North Coast subarea (Washington 
marine area 3). See Section 1.C.7 in this document for the coordinates.

Section 5. Geographical Landmarks

    Wherever the words ``nautical miles off shore'' are used in this 
document, the distance is measured from the baseline from which the 
territorial sea is measured.
    Geographical landmarks referenced in this document are at the 
following locations:


Cape Flattery, WA.....................  48[deg]23'00'' N lat.
Cape Alava, WA........................  48[deg]10'00'' N lat.
Queets River, WA......................  47[deg]31'42'' N lat.
Leadbetter Point, WA..................  46[deg]38'10'' N lat.
Cape Falcon, OR.......................  45[deg]46'00'' N lat.
Florence South Jetty, OR..............  44[deg]00'54'' N lat.
Humbug Mountain, OR...................  42[deg]40'30'' N lat.
Oregon-California border..............  42[deg]00'00'' N lat.
Humboldt South Jetty, CA..............  40[deg]45'53'' N lat.
Horse Mountain, CA....................  40[deg]05'00'' N lat.
Point Arena, CA.......................  38[deg]57'30'' N lat.
Point Reyes, CA.......................  37[deg]59'44'' N lat.
Point San Pedro, CA...................  37[deg]35'40'' N lat.
Pigeon Point, CA......................  37[deg]11'00'' N lat.
Point Sur, CA.........................  36[deg]18'00'' N lat.
Point Conception, CA..................  34[deg]27'00'' N lat.
 

Section 6. Inseason Notice Procedures

    Notice of inseason management actions will be provided by a 
telephone hotline administered by the West Coast Region, NMFS, 800-662-
9825 or 206-526-6667, and by USCG Notice to Mariners broadcasts. These 
broadcasts are announced on Channel 16 VHF-FM and 2182 KHz at frequent 
intervals. The announcements designate the channel or frequency over 
which the Notice to Mariners will be immediately broadcast. Inseason 
actions will also be published in the Federal Register as soon as 
practicable. Since provisions of these management measures may be 
altered by inseason actions, fishermen should monitor either the 
telephone hotline or USCG broadcasts for current information for the 
area in which they are fishing.

Classification

    This final rule is necessary for conservation and management of 
Pacific coast salmon stocks and is consistent with the MSA and other 
applicable law. These regulations are being promulgated under the 
authority of 16 U.S.C. 1855(d) and 16 U.S.C. 773(c).
    This final rule has been determined to be not significant for 
purposes of Executive Order 12866.
    The Assistant Administrator for Fisheries finds good cause under 5 
U.S.C. 553(b)(B), to waive the requirement for prior notice and 
opportunity for public comment, as such procedures would be 
impracticable and contrary to the public interest.
    The annual salmon management cycle traditionally begins May 1 and 
continues through April 30 of the following year. May 1 was chosen 
because the pre-May harvests constitute a relatively small portion of 
the annual catch. The time frame of the preseason process for 
determining the annual modifications to ocean salmon fishery management 
measures depends on when the pertinent biological data are available. 
Salmon stocks are managed to meet annual spawning escapement goals or 
specific exploitation rates. Achieving either of these objectives 
requires designing management measures that are appropriate for the 
ocean abundance predicted for that year. These pre-season abundance 
forecasts, which are derived from previous years' observed spawning 
escapement, vary substantially from year to year, and are not available 
until January or February because spawning escapement continues through 
the fall.
    The preseason planning and public review process associated with 
developing Council recommendations is initiated in February as soon as 
the forecast information becomes available. The public planning process 
requires coordination of management actions of four states, numerous 
Indian tribes, and the Federal Government, all of which have management 
authority over the stocks. This complex process includes the affected 
user groups, as well as the general public. The process is compressed 
into a two-month period culminating with the April Council meeting at 
which the Council adopts a recommendation that is forwarded to NMFS for 
review, approval, and implementation of fishing regulations typically 
effective on May 1. For 2019, even with the waiver of notice and 
comment, NMFS does not expect the rule to be effective until May 6. 
This is because the Council scheduled final action on the 2019 
management measures for April 15, too late to allow NMFS to complete 
the necessary regulatory process to review, approve, and implement 
these fishing regulations by the traditional May 1 date. This delay, 
which is occurring even with the waiver of notice and comment 
rulemaking, required NMFS to take inseason action to close fisheries 
that would have otherwise opened May 1 under 2018 management measures 
to avoid excessive impacts to certain stocks during the first week of 
fishing in 2019.
    Providing opportunity for prior notice and public comments on the 
Council's recommended measures through a proposed and final rulemaking 
process would require 30 to 60 days in addition to the two-month period 
required for development of the regulations. Delaying implementation of 
annual fishing regulations, which are based on the current stock 
abundance projections, for an additional 60 days would require that 
fishing regulations for May and June be set in the previous year, 
without the benefit of information regarding current stock abundance. 
For the 2019 fishing regulations, the current stock abundance was not 
available to the Council until February. In addition, information 
related to northern fisheries and stock status in Alaska and Canada 
which is important to assessing the amount of available salmon in 
southern U.S. ocean fisheries is not available until mid- to late-
March. Because a substantial amount of fishing normally occurs during 
May and June, managing the fishery with measures developed using the 
prior year's data could have significant adverse effects on the managed 
stocks, including ESA-listed stocks. Although salmon fisheries that 
open prior to May are managed under measures developed the previous 
year, as modified by the Council at its March meeting, relatively 
little harvest occurs during that period (e.g., on average, less than 5 
percent of commercial and recreational harvest occurred prior to May 1 
during the years 2001 through 2017). Allowing the much more substantial 
harvest levels normally associated with the May and June salmon seasons 
to be promulgated under the prior year's regulations would impair NMFS' 
ability to protect weak and ESA-listed salmon stocks, and to provide 
harvest opportunity where appropriate. The choice of May 1 as the 
beginning of the regulatory season balances the need to gather and 
analyze the data needed to meet the management objectives of the Salmon 
FMP and the need to manage the fishery using the best available 
scientific information.
    If the 2019 measures are not in place on May 6, salmon fisheries 
will not open as scheduled. This would result in lost fishing 
opportunity, negative economic impacts, and confusion for the public as 
the state fisheries adopt concurrent regulations that conform to the 
Federal management measures.

[[Page 19742]]

    Overall, the annual population dynamics of the various salmon 
stocks require managers to adjust the season structure of the West 
Coast salmon fisheries to both protect weaker stocks and give fishers 
access to stronger salmon stocks, particularly hatchery produced fish. 
Failure to implement these measures immediately could compromise the 
status of certain stocks, or result in foregone opportunity to harvest 
stocks whose abundance has increased relative to the previous year 
thereby undermining the purpose of this agency action.
    In addition, these measures were developed with significant public 
input. Public comment was received and considered by the Council and 
NMFS throughout the process of developing these management measures. As 
described above, the Council took comment at its March and April 
meetings, and heard summaries of comments received at public meetings 
held between the March and April meetings in each of the coastal 
states. NMFS also invited comments in a notice published prior to the 
March Council meeting, and considered comments received by the Council 
through its representative on the Council.
    Based upon the above-described need to have these measures 
effective on May 6 and the fact that there is limited time available to 
implement these new measures after the final Council meeting in April 
and before the commencement of the 2019 ocean salmon fishing year on 
May 6, NMFS has concluded it is impracticable and contrary to the 
public interest to provide an opportunity for prior notice and public 
comment under 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B).
    The Assistant Administrator for Fisheries also finds that good 
cause exists under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3), to waive the 30-day delay in 
effectiveness of this final rule. As previously discussed, data were 
not available until February and management measures were not finalized 
until mid-April. These measures are essential to conserve threatened 
and endangered ocean salmon stocks as well as potentially overfished 
stocks, and to provide for harvest of more abundant stocks. Delaying 
the effectiveness of these measures by 30 days could compromise the 
ability of some stocks to attain their conservation objectives, 
preclude harvest opportunity, and negatively impact anticipated 
international, state, and tribal salmon fisheries, thereby undermining 
the purposes of this agency action and the requirements of the MSA.
    To enhance the fishing industry's notification of these new 
measures, and to minimize the burden on the regulated community 
required to comply with the new regulations, NMFS is announcing the new 
measures over the telephone hotline used for inseason management 
actions and is posting the regulations on its West Coast Region website 
(http://www.westcoast.fisheries.noaa.gov). NMFS is also advising the 
states of Washington, Oregon, and California on the new management 
measures. These states announce the seasons for applicable state and 
Federal fisheries through their own public notification systems.
    Because prior notice and an opportunity for public comment are not 
required to be provided for this rule by 5 U.S.C. 553, or any other 
law, the analytical requirements of the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 
U.S.C. 601 et seq., are not applicable. Accordingly, no Regulatory 
Flexibility Analysis is required for this rule and none has been 
prepared.
    This action contains collection-of-information requirements subject 
to the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA), and which have been approved by 
the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under control number 0648-
0433. The current information collection approval expires on August 30, 
2020. The public reporting burden for providing notifications if 
landing area restrictions cannot be met is estimated to average 15 
minutes per response. This estimate includes the time for reviewing 
instructions, searching existing data sources, gathering and 
maintaining the data needed, and completing and reviewing the 
collection of information.
    Notwithstanding any other provision of the law, no person is 
required to respond to, nor shall any person be subject to a penalty 
for failure to comply with, a collection of information subject to the 
requirements of the PRA, unless that collection of information displays 
a currently valid OMB control number.
    NMFS has current ESA biological opinions that cover fishing under 
these regulations on all listed salmon species. NMFS provided guidance 
on the impact limits for all ESA-listed salmon and steelhead species, 
given annual abundance projections, in our annual guidance letter to 
the Council dated March 5, 2019. The management measures for 2019 are 
consistent with the biological opinions. The Council's recommended 
management measures therefore have been determined not likely to 
jeopardize the continued existence of any listed salmon species which 
may be affected by Council fisheries or adversely modify critical 
habitat. In some cases, the recommended measures are more restrictive 
than necessary for ESA compliance.
    NMFS consulted on the effects of the ocean salmon fisheries on the 
ESA-listed Southern Resident killer whale (SRKW) distinct population 
segment in 2009. As discussed above, NMFS has reinitiated consultation 
to consider new information. NMFS has assessed the potential impacts of 
the 2019 management measures to SRKW, and has made a determination 
under ESA sections 7(a)(2) and 7(d) that the 2019 fisheries are not 
likely to jeopardize SRKW, and do not represent an irreversible and 
irretrievable commitment of resources that would foreclose the 
formulation or implementation of any reasonable and prudent alternative 
measures.
    This final rule was developed after meaningful collaboration with 
the affected tribes. The tribal representative on the Council made the 
motion for the regulations that apply to the tribal fisheries.

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 773-773k; 1801 et seq.

    Dated: April 29, 2019.
Samuel D. Rauch III,
Deputy Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Programs, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2019-09064 Filed 5-3-19; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P