Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act Provisions; Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Electronic Vessel Trip Reporting, 43528-43531 [2020-14949]

Download as PDF 43528 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 138 / Friday, July 17, 2020 / Proposed Rules V. Have the requirements for approval of a SIP revision been met? The State submission has met the public notice requirements for SIP submissions in accordance with 40 CFR 51.102. The submission also satisfied the completeness criteria of 40 CFR part 51, appendix V. The State provided public notice on this SIP revision from May 15, 2018, to August 2, 2018, and received twelve comments from the EPA that related to Missouri’s lack of an adequate demonstration that the rule could be removed from the SIP in accordance with section 110(l) of the CAA, whether the rule applied to new sources and other implications related to rescinding the rule. Missouri’s July 11, 2019 letter and December 3, 2018 response to comments on the state rescission rulemaking addressed the EPA’s comments. In addition, the revision meets the substantive SIP requirements of the CAA, including section 110 and implementing regulations. VI. What action is the EPA taking? The EPA is proposing to approve Missouri’s request to rescind 10 CSR 10–5.410 from the SIP because the rule applied to a single facility that ceased the manufacture of polystyrene resin, which caused the facility to initially be subject to the rule, in 2009 and because the rule is not applicable to any other source. Therefore, the rule no longer serves to reduce emissions in the St. Louis Area. Further, any new sources or major modifications of existing sources in the St. Louis Area are subject to NSR permitting.9 We are processing this as a proposed action because we are soliciting comments on this proposed action. Final rulemaking will occur after consideration of any comments. khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with PROPOSALS VII. Incorporation by Reference In this document, the EPA is proposing to amend regulatory text that includes incorporation by reference. As described in the proposed amendments to 40 CFR part 52 set forth below, the EPA is proposing to remove provisions of the EPA-Approved Missouri Regulation from the Missouri State Implementation Plan, which is incorporated by reference in accordance with the requirements of 1 CFR part 51. VIII. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews Under the CAA, the Administrator is required to approve a SIP submission 9 ‘‘NSR Permitting’’ includes PSD permitting in areas designated attainment and unclassifiable, NA NSR in areas designated nonattainment and minor source permitting. VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:50 Jul 16, 2020 Jkt 250001 that complies with the provisions of the Act and applicable Federal regulations. 42 U.S.C. 7410(k); 40 CFR 52.02(a). Thus, in reviewing SIP submissions, EPA’s role is to approve state choices, provided that they meet the criteria of the CAA. Accordingly, this action merely approves state law as meeting Federal requirements and does not impose additional requirements beyond those imposed by state law. For that reason, this action: • Is not a significant regulatory action subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget under Executive Orders 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993) and 13563 (76 FR 3821, January 21, 2011); • Is not an Executive Order 13771 (82 FR 9339, February 2, 2017) regulatory action because SIP approvals are exempted under Executive Order 12866. • Does not impose an information collection burden under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.); • Is certified as not having a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.); • Does not contain any unfunded mandate or significantly or uniquely affect small governments, as described in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104–4); • Does not have federalism implications as specified in Executive Order 13132 (64 FR 43255, August 10, 1999); • Is not an economically significant regulatory action based on health or safety risks subject to Executive Order 13045 (62 FR 19885, April 23, 1997); • Is not a significant regulatory action subject to Executive Order 13211 (66 FR 28355, May 22, 2001); • Is not subject to requirements of the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act (NTTA) because this rulemaking does not involve technical standards; and • Does not provide EPA with the discretionary authority to address, as appropriate, disproportionate human health or environmental effects, using practicable and legally permissible methods, under Executive Order 12898 (59 FR 7629, February 16, 1994). The SIP is not approved to apply on any Indian reservation land or in any other area where EPA or an Indian tribe has demonstrated that a tribe has jurisdiction. In those areas of Indian country, the rule does not have tribal implications and will not impose substantial direct costs on tribal governments or preempt tribal law as PO 00000 Frm 00036 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 specified by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000). List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52 Environmental protection, Air pollution control, Incorporation by reference, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Volatile organic compounds. Dated: June 30, 2020. James Gulliford, Regional Administrator, Region 7. For the reasons stated in the preamble, the EPA proposes to amend 40 CFR part 52 as set forth below: PART 52—APPROVAL AND PROMULGATION OF IMPLEMENTATION PLANS 1. The authority citation for part 52 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq. Subpart—AA Missouri § 52.1320 [Amended] 2. In § 52.1320, the table in paragraph (c) is amended by removing the entry ‘‘10–5.410’’ under the heading ‘‘Chapter 5-Air Quality Standards and Air Pollution Control Regulations for the St. Louis Metropolitan Area’’. ■ [FR Doc. 2020–14524 Filed 7–16–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560–50–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 648 [Docket No. 200706–0179] RIN 0648–BI15 Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act Provisions; Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Electronic Vessel Trip Reporting National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Proposed rule; request for comments. AGENCY: This action proposes approval of, and regulations to implement, an action to require commercially permitted vessels in both New England and mid-Atlantic regions to submit vessel trip reports electronically within 48 hours of the end of a trip. In addition, this action would require forhire vessels with permits for species SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\17JYP1.SGM 17JYP1 khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with PROPOSALS Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 138 / Friday, July 17, 2020 / Proposed Rules managed by the New England Fishery Management Council to submit vessel trip reports electronically. Document retention requirements would also be removed with this action. This action is intended to increase data quality and timeliness of vessel trip reports. DATES: Comments must be received by August 17, 2020. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by NOAA–NMFS–2020–0070, by the following method: • Electronic Submission: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal eRulemaking Portal. 1. Go to http://www.regulations.gov/ #!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-20200070; 2. Click the ‘‘Comment Now!’’ icon and complete the required fields; and 3. Enter or attach your comments. Instructions: Comments sent by any other method, to any other address or individual, or received after the end of the comment period, may not be considered by us. All comments received are a part of the public record and will generally be posted for public viewing on www.regulations.gov without change. All personal identifying information (e.g., name, address, etc.), confidential business information, or otherwise sensitive information submitted voluntarily by the sender will be publicly accessible. We will accept anonymous comments (enter ‘‘N/A’’ in the required fields if you wish to remain anonymous). If you are unable to submit your comment through www.regulations.gov, contact Moira Kelly, Senior Fishery Program Specialist, phone: 978–281–9218; email: Moira.Kelly@noaa.gov. Copies of the Joint Omnibus Electronic Vessel Trip Reporting Framework Adjustment prepared by the Mid-Atlantic and New England Fishery Management Council in support of this action are available from Dr. Christopher Moore, Executive Director, Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council, 800 North Street, Suite 201, Dover, DE 19901. The supporting documents are also accessible via the internet at: https://www.mafmc.org/ actions/commercial-evtr-framework, https://www.nefmc.org/library/omnibuscommercial-evtr-framework, or http:// www.regulations.gov. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Moira Kelly, Senior Fishery Program Specialist, phone: 978–281–9218; email: Moira.Kelly@noaa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: In April 2019, NOAA’s NMFS implemented a requirement for vessels issued a for-hire permit for a Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council-managed fishery VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:50 Jul 16, 2020 Jkt 250001 to submit vessel trip reports electronically (eVTR) within 48 hours of the end of the trip when carrying passengers for hire. Shortly after, the Mid-Atlantic Council initiated an action to require the same of its commercial vessels. Given the substantial overlap in vessel permits across the two Councils, the New England Fishery Management Council agreed to make the action a joint omnibus action for all Fishery Management Plans of both Councils. At their respective December 2019 and January 2020 meetings, the Mid-Atlantic and New England Councils voted to submit the action to NMFS for approval. Currently, commercial vessels are required to submit vessel trip reports either on paper or electronically following each trip. Several fishery management plans require weekly submission (Atlantic herring; Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, Butterfish; Northeast Multispecies; and Surfclam and Ocean Quahog); others require monthly submission (Atlantic Bluefish; Atlantic Deep-Sea Red Crab; Atlantic Sea Scallop; Summer Flounder, Scup, Black Sea Bass; Monkfish; Northeast Skate Complex; Spiny Dogfish; and Tilefish). With this action, all vessel trip reports would be required to be submitted electronically within 48 hours of the end of a fishing trip. The Councils considered a variety of reporting timelines, including status quo (monthly or weekly), 24 hours, 72 hours, or weekly reporting. Ultimately, both Councils determined that 48 hours was preferred, as this was consistent with the existing for-hire eVTR requirements. In addition to the method and submission timeframe changes, the Councils recommend removing document retention requirements that are no longer necessary with electronic reporting. New England Council For-Hire Upon implementation of the Councils’ proposed action, all federally permitted vessels in the Greater Atlantic Region would be required to submit vessel trip reports electronically, with two exceptions: (1) Federally permitted lobster vessels; and (2) vessels holding only a New England Council-managed for-hire permit. In conjunction with a reporting action by the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, we are addressing the lobster reporting requirements separately from this action. There are currently fewer than 15 vessels that are only issued a New England for-hire permit. Of those, 10 were active in 2019, and 6 of those submitted vessel trip reports electronically. PO 00000 Frm 00037 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 43529 At the outset of this action (June 2019), the New England Council moved to include its own for-hire vessels in the framework. However, after consulting with the Mid-Atlantic Council, the New England Council agreed to move forward with just the commercial reporting changes. At its April 2020 meeting, after completing the relevant analyses and determining how few vessels would remain without an eVTR requirement, the New England Council requested that NMFS use the MagnusonStevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act authority at section 305(d) to extend the eVTR requirement to New England Council for-hire vessels through the same rulemaking to implement the commercial eVTR framework. Including for-hire vessels with permits for New England Councilmanaged species in the action would streamline this rulemaking and regulatory text, improve our outreach efforts, and reduce the administrative burden of maintaining two reporting systems. Further, as noted above, the majority of vessels that would be impacted are already using electronic reporting voluntarily. Classification Pursuant to section 304(b)(1)(A) of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) Assistant Administrator has made a preliminary determination that this proposed rule is consistent with the Joint Omnibus Electronic Vessel Trip Reporting Framework Adjustment, other provisions of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, and other applicable law. In addition, under the authority granted in section 305(d), NMFS is proposing to extend the requirements of this action to vessels issued for-hire permits for New England Council fisheries. This proposed rule has been determined to be not significant for purposes of Executive Order (E.O.) 12866. This proposed rule is expected to be an E.O. 13771 deregulatory action. This proposed rule does not contain policies with Federalism or takings implications as those terms are defined in E.O. 13132 and E.O. 12630, respectively. The Chief Counsel for Regulation of the Department of Commerce has certified to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration that this proposed rule, if adopted, would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. The factual determination for this determination is as follows. E:\FR\FM\17JYP1.SGM 17JYP1 khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with PROPOSALS 43530 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 138 / Friday, July 17, 2020 / Proposed Rules This is an administrative action that would change the method of submission and reporting frequency of vessel trip reports. Currently, commercial vessels are required to submit vessel trip reports either on paper or electronically following each trip. Several fishery management plans require weekly submission (Atlantic herring; Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, Butterfish; Northeast Multispecies; and, Surfclam and Ocean Quahog); others require monthly submission (Atlantic Bluefish; Atlantic Deep-Sea Red Crab; Atlantic Sea Scallop; Summer Flounder, Scup, Black Sea Bass; Monkfish; Northeast Skate Complex; Spiny Dogfish; and, Tilefish). With this action, vessel trip reports would be required to be submitted electronically, within 48 hours of the end of a fishing trip. The Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) requires Federal agencies to consider disproportionality and profitability to determine the significance of regulatory impacts. For RFA purposes only, NMFS established a small business size standard for businesses, including their affiliates, whose primary industry is commercial fishing (see 50 CFR 200.2). A business primarily engaged in commercial fishing (NAICS code 11411) is classified as a small business if it is independently owned and operated, is not dominant in its field of operation (including its affiliates), and has combined annual receipts less than not in excess of $11 million for all its affiliated operations worldwide. The determination of whether the entity is large or small is based on the average annual revenue for the most recent 3 years for which data are available (from 2016 through 2018). The measures proposed in this action apply to the vessels that hold commercial Federal permits for species managed by the New England or MidAtlantic Council. There were 3,832 affiliates that reported revenue from commercial landings in 2016, 2017, and/or 2018. Based on combined receipts in 2018, 3,820 of these commercial entities were classified as small businesses and 12 were classified as large businesses. When considering affiliates that reported revenues from commercial fishing activities, the 3-year average (2016–2018) annual combined gross receipts from all commercial fishing activity was $1.1 billion for all combined affiliates classified as small businesses and $229,738,842 for all combined affiliates classified as large businesses. The Small Business Administration threshold for a small business is $8 million for for-hire entities and $11 million for commercial fishing entities. There are an additional VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:50 Jul 16, 2020 Jkt 250001 15 for-hire vessels not considered in the Councils’ original analysis. The majority of these 15 vessels are issued only a Northeast multispecies for-hire permit (one vessel also holds a lobster permit). Seven of the 15 vessels submitted vessel trip reports in 2019, ranging from 6 to nearly 70 trips, with an average of 22 trips. Charters (private trips for up to 6 people) typically cost around $1,000 for groundfish trips, while a party boat can carry around 70 people and typically charge approximately $70 per customer. As a result, gross revenue from these vessels’ trips likely averaged between $20,000 and $100,000 in 2019, ranging from $6,000 to upwards of $330,000, well below the $8 million small business threshold for for-hire fishing entities. Complying with the proposed eVTR submission requirements can be accomplished for no cost using several of the available eVTR applications with a smartphone, personal computer, or tablet and internet connection/cellular data. The ubiquitous nature of smartphones, computers, and internet availability in private homes and businesses, as well as free access to WiFi in most public libraries and other locations, provides a free to minimal cost means for permit holders to access eVTRs. Therefore, there is little to no direct negative economic impact to permit holders. Although this low-cost option is available, captains may voluntarily choose a different reporting mechanism, additional services, or upgraded hardware options that would increase their costs to varying degrees. Because the eVTR submission requirements can be accomplished at low/no cost, no adverse impacts are expected from the proposed measures, and in the long-term, electronic reporting is expected to reduce reporting burden as we will be able to consolidate requirements into the eVTR platforms. Therefore, this action is not expected to have a significant economic effect on a substantial number of small entities. Under the proposed action, small entities would not be placed at a competitive disadvantage relative to large entities, and the regulations would not reduce the profits for any small entities relative to taking no action. As a result, an initial regulatory flexibility analysis is not required and none has been prepared. List of Subjects in 50 CFR Part 648 Fisheries, Fishing, Recordkeeping, and reporting requirements. PO 00000 Frm 00038 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 Dated: July 7, 2020. Samuel D. Rauch III, Deputy Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Programs, National Marine Fisheries Service. For the reasons stated in the preamble, 50 CFR part 648 is proposed to be amended as follows: PART 648—FISHERIES OF THE NORTHEASTERN UNITED STATES 1. The authority citation for part 648 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. 2. Amend § 648.7 by: a. Revising paragraphs (b)(1), (c), (d), and (f)(2); and ■ b. Removing and reserving paragraph (e)(2). The revisions read as follows: ■ ■ § 648.7 Recordkeeping and reporting requirements. * * * * * (b) * * * (1) Fishing Vessel Trip Reports. The owner or operator of any vessel issued a valid permit or eligible to renew a limited access permit under this part must maintain on board the vessel, and submit, an accurate fishing log report for each fishing trip, regardless of species fished for or taken, by electronic means. This report must be entered into and submitted through a software application approved by NMFS. The reporting requirements specified in this paragraph (b)(1)(i) for an owner or operator of a vessel fishing for, possessing, or landing Atlantic chub mackerel are effective through December 31, 2020. (i) With the exception of those vessel owners or operators fishing under a surfclam or ocean quahog permit, at least the following information as applicable and any other information required by the Regional Administrator must be provided: Vessel name; USCG documentation number (or state registration number, if undocumented); permit number; date/time sailed; date/ time landed; trip type; number of crew; number of anglers (if a charter or party boat); gear fished; quantity and size of gear; mesh/ring size; chart area fished; average depth; latitude/longitude; total hauls per area fished; average tow time duration; hail weight, in pounds (or count of individual fish, if a party or charter vessel), by species, of all species, or parts of species, such as monkfish livers, landed or discarded; and, in the case of skate discards, ‘‘small’’ (i.e., less than 23 inches (58.42 cm), total length) or ‘‘large’’ (i.e., 23 inches (58.42 cm) or greater, total length) skates; dealer E:\FR\FM\17JYP1.SGM 17JYP1 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 138 / Friday, July 17, 2020 / Proposed Rules khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with PROPOSALS permit number; dealer name; date sold, port and state landed; and vessel operator’s name, signature, and operator’s permit number (if applicable). (ii) The owner or operator of any vessel conducting any surfclam and ocean quahog fishing operations must provide at least the following information and any other information required by the Regional Administrator: Name and permit number of the vessel, total amount in bushels of each species taken, date(s) caught, time at sea, duration of fishing time, locality fished, crew size, crew share by percentage, landing port, date sold, price per bushel, buyer, tag numbers from cages used, quantity of surfclams and ocean quahogs discarded, and allocation permit number. * * * * * (c) When to fill out a vessel trip report. Vessel trip reports required by VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:50 Jul 16, 2020 Jkt 250001 paragraph (b)(1)(i) of this section must be filled out with all required information, except for information not yet ascertainable, prior to entering port. Information that may be considered unascertainable prior to entering port includes dealer name, dealer permit number, and date sold. Vessel trip reports must be completed as soon as the information becomes available. Vessel trip reports required by paragraph (b)(1)(ii) of this section must be filled out before landing any surfclams or ocean quahogs. (d) Inspection. Upon the request of an authorized officer or an employee of NMFS designated by the Regional Administrator to make such inspections, all persons required to submit reports under this part must make immediately available for inspection reports, and all records upon which those reports are or PO 00000 Frm 00039 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 9990 43531 will be based, that are required to be submitted or kept under this part. * * * * * (f) * * * (2) Fishing vessel trip reports. For any vessel issued a valid permit or eligible to renew a limited access permit under this part, fishing vessel trip reports, required by paragraph (b)(1) of this section, must be submitted within 48 hours at the conclusion of a trip. (i) For the purposes of this paragraph (f)(2), the date when fish are offloaded from a commercial vessel will establish the conclusion of a commercial trip. (ii) For the purposes of this paragraph (f)(2), the date a charter/party vessel enters port will establish the conclusion of a for-hire trip. * * * * * [FR Doc. 2020–14949 Filed 7–16–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P E:\FR\FM\17JYP1.SGM 17JYP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 138 (Friday, July 17, 2020)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 43528-43531]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-14949]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 648

[Docket No. 200706-0179]
RIN 0648-BI15


Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act 
Provisions; Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Electronic 
Vessel Trip Reporting

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

ACTION: Proposed rule; request for comments.

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

SUMMARY: This action proposes approval of, and regulations to 
implement, an action to require commercially permitted vessels in both 
New England and mid-Atlantic regions to submit vessel trip reports 
electronically within 48 hours of the end of a trip. In addition, this 
action would require for-hire vessels with permits for species

[[Page 43529]]

managed by the New England Fishery Management Council to submit vessel 
trip reports electronically. Document retention requirements would also 
be removed with this action. This action is intended to increase data 
quality and timeliness of vessel trip reports.

DATES: Comments must be received by August 17, 2020.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by NOAA-NMFS-2020-0070, 
by the following method:
     Electronic Submission: Submit all electronic public 
comments via the Federal eRulemaking Portal.
    1. Go to http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-
2020-0070;
    2. Click the ``Comment Now!'' icon and complete the required 
fields; and
    3. Enter or attach your comments.
    Instructions: Comments sent by any other method, to any other 
address or individual, or received after the end of the comment period, 
may not be considered by us. All comments received are a part of the 
public record and will generally be posted for public viewing on 
www.regulations.gov without change. All personal identifying 
information (e.g., name, address, etc.), confidential business 
information, or otherwise sensitive information submitted voluntarily 
by the sender will be publicly accessible. We will accept anonymous 
comments (enter ``N/A'' in the required fields if you wish to remain 
anonymous). If you are unable to submit your comment through 
www.regulations.gov, contact Moira Kelly, Senior Fishery Program 
Specialist, phone: 978-281-9218; email: [email protected].
    Copies of the Joint Omnibus Electronic Vessel Trip Reporting 
Framework Adjustment prepared by the Mid-Atlantic and New England 
Fishery Management Council in support of this action are available from 
Dr. Christopher Moore, Executive Director, Mid-Atlantic Fishery 
Management Council, 800 North Street, Suite 201, Dover, DE 19901. The 
supporting documents are also accessible via the internet at: https://www.mafmc.org/actions/commercial-evtr-framework, https://www.nefmc.org/library/omnibus-commercial-evtr-framework, or http://www.regulations.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Moira Kelly, Senior Fishery Program 
Specialist, phone: 978-281-9218; email: [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:  In April 2019, NOAA's NMFS implemented a 
requirement for vessels issued a for-hire permit for a Mid-Atlantic 
Fishery Management Council-managed fishery to submit vessel trip 
reports electronically (eVTR) within 48 hours of the end of the trip 
when carrying passengers for hire. Shortly after, the Mid-Atlantic 
Council initiated an action to require the same of its commercial 
vessels. Given the substantial overlap in vessel permits across the two 
Councils, the New England Fishery Management Council agreed to make the 
action a joint omnibus action for all Fishery Management Plans of both 
Councils. At their respective December 2019 and January 2020 meetings, 
the Mid-Atlantic and New England Councils voted to submit the action to 
NMFS for approval.
    Currently, commercial vessels are required to submit vessel trip 
reports either on paper or electronically following each trip. Several 
fishery management plans require weekly submission (Atlantic herring; 
Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, Butterfish; Northeast Multispecies; and 
Surfclam and Ocean Quahog); others require monthly submission (Atlantic 
Bluefish; Atlantic Deep-Sea Red Crab; Atlantic Sea Scallop; Summer 
Flounder, Scup, Black Sea Bass; Monkfish; Northeast Skate Complex; 
Spiny Dogfish; and Tilefish). With this action, all vessel trip reports 
would be required to be submitted electronically within 48 hours of the 
end of a fishing trip.
    The Councils considered a variety of reporting timelines, including 
status quo (monthly or weekly), 24 hours, 72 hours, or weekly 
reporting. Ultimately, both Councils determined that 48 hours was 
preferred, as this was consistent with the existing for-hire eVTR 
requirements. In addition to the method and submission timeframe 
changes, the Councils recommend removing document retention 
requirements that are no longer necessary with electronic reporting.

New England Council For-Hire

    Upon implementation of the Councils' proposed action, all federally 
permitted vessels in the Greater Atlantic Region would be required to 
submit vessel trip reports electronically, with two exceptions: (1) 
Federally permitted lobster vessels; and (2) vessels holding only a New 
England Council-managed for-hire permit. In conjunction with a 
reporting action by the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, we 
are addressing the lobster reporting requirements separately from this 
action. There are currently fewer than 15 vessels that are only issued 
a New England for-hire permit. Of those, 10 were active in 2019, and 6 
of those submitted vessel trip reports electronically.
    At the outset of this action (June 2019), the New England Council 
moved to include its own for-hire vessels in the framework. However, 
after consulting with the Mid-Atlantic Council, the New England Council 
agreed to move forward with just the commercial reporting changes. At 
its April 2020 meeting, after completing the relevant analyses and 
determining how few vessels would remain without an eVTR requirement, 
the New England Council requested that NMFS use the Magnuson-Stevens 
Fishery Conservation and Management Act authority at section 305(d) to 
extend the eVTR requirement to New England Council for-hire vessels 
through the same rulemaking to implement the commercial eVTR framework.
    Including for-hire vessels with permits for New England Council-
managed species in the action would streamline this rulemaking and 
regulatory text, improve our outreach efforts, and reduce the 
administrative burden of maintaining two reporting systems. Further, as 
noted above, the majority of vessels that would be impacted are already 
using electronic reporting voluntarily.

Classification

    Pursuant to section 304(b)(1)(A) of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, the 
National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) Assistant Administrator has 
made a preliminary determination that this proposed rule is consistent 
with the Joint Omnibus Electronic Vessel Trip Reporting Framework 
Adjustment, other provisions of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, and other 
applicable law. In addition, under the authority granted in section 
305(d), NMFS is proposing to extend the requirements of this action to 
vessels issued for-hire permits for New England Council fisheries.
    This proposed rule has been determined to be not significant for 
purposes of Executive Order (E.O.) 12866. This proposed rule is 
expected to be an E.O. 13771 deregulatory action.
    This proposed rule does not contain policies with Federalism or 
takings implications as those terms are defined in E.O. 13132 and E.O. 
12630, respectively.
    The Chief Counsel for Regulation of the Department of Commerce has 
certified to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business 
Administration that this proposed rule, if adopted, would not have a 
significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. 
The factual determination for this determination is as follows.

[[Page 43530]]

    This is an administrative action that would change the method of 
submission and reporting frequency of vessel trip reports. Currently, 
commercial vessels are required to submit vessel trip reports either on 
paper or electronically following each trip. Several fishery management 
plans require weekly submission (Atlantic herring; Atlantic Mackerel, 
Squid, Butterfish; Northeast Multispecies; and, Surfclam and Ocean 
Quahog); others require monthly submission (Atlantic Bluefish; Atlantic 
Deep-Sea Red Crab; Atlantic Sea Scallop; Summer Flounder, Scup, Black 
Sea Bass; Monkfish; Northeast Skate Complex; Spiny Dogfish; and, 
Tilefish). With this action, vessel trip reports would be required to 
be submitted electronically, within 48 hours of the end of a fishing 
trip.
    The Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) requires Federal agencies to 
consider disproportionality and profitability to determine the 
significance of regulatory impacts. For RFA purposes only, NMFS 
established a small business size standard for businesses, including 
their affiliates, whose primary industry is commercial fishing (see 50 
CFR 200.2). A business primarily engaged in commercial fishing (NAICS 
code 11411) is classified as a small business if it is independently 
owned and operated, is not dominant in its field of operation 
(including its affiliates), and has combined annual receipts less than 
not in excess of $11 million for all its affiliated operations 
worldwide. The determination of whether the entity is large or small is 
based on the average annual revenue for the most recent 3 years for 
which data are available (from 2016 through 2018).
    The measures proposed in this action apply to the vessels that hold 
commercial Federal permits for species managed by the New England or 
Mid-Atlantic Council. There were 3,832 affiliates that reported revenue 
from commercial landings in 2016, 2017, and/or 2018. Based on combined 
receipts in 2018, 3,820 of these commercial entities were classified as 
small businesses and 12 were classified as large businesses. When 
considering affiliates that reported revenues from commercial fishing 
activities, the 3-year average (2016-2018) annual combined gross 
receipts from all commercial fishing activity was $1.1 billion for all 
combined affiliates classified as small businesses and $229,738,842 for 
all combined affiliates classified as large businesses. The Small 
Business Administration threshold for a small business is $8 million 
for for-hire entities and $11 million for commercial fishing entities. 
There are an additional 15 for-hire vessels not considered in the 
Councils' original analysis. The majority of these 15 vessels are 
issued only a Northeast multispecies for-hire permit (one vessel also 
holds a lobster permit). Seven of the 15 vessels submitted vessel trip 
reports in 2019, ranging from 6 to nearly 70 trips, with an average of 
22 trips. Charters (private trips for up to 6 people) typically cost 
around $1,000 for groundfish trips, while a party boat can carry around 
70 people and typically charge approximately $70 per customer. As a 
result, gross revenue from these vessels' trips likely averaged between 
$20,000 and $100,000 in 2019, ranging from $6,000 to upwards of 
$330,000, well below the $8 million small business threshold for for-
hire fishing entities.
    Complying with the proposed eVTR submission requirements can be 
accomplished for no cost using several of the available eVTR 
applications with a smartphone, personal computer, or tablet and 
internet connection/cellular data. The ubiquitous nature of 
smartphones, computers, and internet availability in private homes and 
businesses, as well as free access to Wi-Fi in most public libraries 
and other locations, provides a free to minimal cost means for permit 
holders to access eVTRs. Therefore, there is little to no direct 
negative economic impact to permit holders. Although this low-cost 
option is available, captains may voluntarily choose a different 
reporting mechanism, additional services, or upgraded hardware options 
that would increase their costs to varying degrees.
    Because the eVTR submission requirements can be accomplished at 
low/no cost, no adverse impacts are expected from the proposed 
measures, and in the long-term, electronic reporting is expected to 
reduce reporting burden as we will be able to consolidate requirements 
into the eVTR platforms.
    Therefore, this action is not expected to have a significant 
economic effect on a substantial number of small entities. Under the 
proposed action, small entities would not be placed at a competitive 
disadvantage relative to large entities, and the regulations would not 
reduce the profits for any small entities relative to taking no action. 
As a result, an initial regulatory flexibility analysis is not required 
and none has been prepared.

List of Subjects in 50 CFR Part 648

    Fisheries, Fishing, Recordkeeping, and reporting requirements.

    Dated: July 7, 2020.
Samuel D. Rauch III,
Deputy Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Programs, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.

    For the reasons stated in the preamble, 50 CFR part 648 is proposed 
to be amended as follows:

PART 648--FISHERIES OF THE NORTHEASTERN UNITED STATES

0
1. The authority citation for part 648 continues to read as follows:

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

0
2. Amend Sec.  648.7 by:
0
a. Revising paragraphs (b)(1), (c), (d), and (f)(2); and
0
b. Removing and reserving paragraph (e)(2).
    The revisions read as follows:


Sec.  648.7   Recordkeeping and reporting requirements.

* * * * *
    (b) * * *
    (1) Fishing Vessel Trip Reports. The owner or operator of any 
vessel issued a valid permit or eligible to renew a limited access 
permit under this part must maintain on board the vessel, and submit, 
an accurate fishing log report for each fishing trip, regardless of 
species fished for or taken, by electronic means. This report must be 
entered into and submitted through a software application approved by 
NMFS. The reporting requirements specified in this paragraph (b)(1)(i) 
for an owner or operator of a vessel fishing for, possessing, or 
landing Atlantic chub mackerel are effective through December 31, 2020.
    (i) With the exception of those vessel owners or operators fishing 
under a surfclam or ocean quahog permit, at least the following 
information as applicable and any other information required by the 
Regional Administrator must be provided: Vessel name; USCG 
documentation number (or state registration number, if undocumented); 
permit number; date/time sailed; date/time landed; trip type; number of 
crew; number of anglers (if a charter or party boat); gear fished; 
quantity and size of gear; mesh/ring size; chart area fished; average 
depth; latitude/longitude; total hauls per area fished; average tow 
time duration; hail weight, in pounds (or count of individual fish, if 
a party or charter vessel), by species, of all species, or parts of 
species, such as monkfish livers, landed or discarded; and, in the case 
of skate discards, ``small'' (i.e., less than 23 inches (58.42 cm), 
total length) or ``large'' (i.e., 23 inches (58.42 cm) or greater, 
total length) skates; dealer

[[Page 43531]]

permit number; dealer name; date sold, port and state landed; and 
vessel operator's name, signature, and operator's permit number (if 
applicable).
    (ii) The owner or operator of any vessel conducting any surfclam 
and ocean quahog fishing operations must provide at least the following 
information and any other information required by the Regional 
Administrator: Name and permit number of the vessel, total amount in 
bushels of each species taken, date(s) caught, time at sea, duration of 
fishing time, locality fished, crew size, crew share by percentage, 
landing port, date sold, price per bushel, buyer, tag numbers from 
cages used, quantity of surfclams and ocean quahogs discarded, and 
allocation permit number.
* * * * *
    (c) When to fill out a vessel trip report. Vessel trip reports 
required by paragraph (b)(1)(i) of this section must be filled out with 
all required information, except for information not yet ascertainable, 
prior to entering port. Information that may be considered 
unascertainable prior to entering port includes dealer name, dealer 
permit number, and date sold. Vessel trip reports must be completed as 
soon as the information becomes available. Vessel trip reports required 
by paragraph (b)(1)(ii) of this section must be filled out before 
landing any surfclams or ocean quahogs.
    (d) Inspection. Upon the request of an authorized officer or an 
employee of NMFS designated by the Regional Administrator to make such 
inspections, all persons required to submit reports under this part 
must make immediately available for inspection reports, and all records 
upon which those reports are or will be based, that are required to be 
submitted or kept under this part.
* * * * *
    (f) * * *
    (2) Fishing vessel trip reports. For any vessel issued a valid 
permit or eligible to renew a limited access permit under this part, 
fishing vessel trip reports, required by paragraph (b)(1) of this 
section, must be submitted within 48 hours at the conclusion of a trip.
    (i) For the purposes of this paragraph (f)(2), the date when fish 
are offloaded from a commercial vessel will establish the conclusion of 
a commercial trip.
    (ii) For the purposes of this paragraph (f)(2), the date a charter/
party vessel enters port will establish the conclusion of a for-hire 
trip.
* * * * *
[FR Doc. 2020-14949 Filed 7-16-20; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P