Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Bluefish Fishery; Quota Transfers From VA to RI and NJ to MA, 54875 [2021-21676]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 190 / Tuesday, October 5, 2021 / Rules and Regulations lotter on DSK11XQN23PROD with RULES1 (888) 872–8862 (Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.). Depending on the level of fishing effort and catch rates of BFT, NMFS may determine that additional adjustments (e.g., quota adjustment, daily retention limit adjustment, or closure) are necessary to ensure available quota is not exceeded or to enhance scientific data collection from, and fishing opportunities in, all geographic areas. If needed, subsequent adjustments will be published in the Federal Register. In addition, fishermen may call the Atlantic Tunas Information Line at (978) 281–9260, or access hmspermits.noaa.gov, for updates on quota monitoring and inseason adjustments. Classification NMFS issues this action pursuant to section 305(d) of the Magnuson-Stevens Act and regulations at 50 CFR part 635 and is exempt from review under Executive Order 12866. The Assistant Administrator for NMFS (AA) finds that it is impracticable and contrary to the public interest to provide prior notice of, and an opportunity for public comment on, this action for the following reasons: The regulations implementing the 2006 Consolidated HMS FMP and its amendments provide for inseason retention limit adjustments to respond to the unpredictable nature of BFT availability on the fishing grounds, the migratory nature of this species, and the regional variations in the BFT fishery. Affording prior notice and opportunity for public comment to implement the quota transfer for the October through November 2021 time-period is contrary to the public interest as such a delay would likely fail to prevent the closure of the General category fishery when the baseline subquota for the October through November time-period is met and the need to re-open the fishery, with attendant costs to the fishery, including administrative costs and lost fishing opportunities. The delay would preclude the fishery from harvesting BFT that are available on the fishing grounds and that might otherwise become unavailable during a delay. This action does not raise conservation and management concerns. Transferring quota from the Reserve category to the General category does not affect the overall U.S. BFT quota, and the adjustment would have a minimal risk of exceeding the ICCAT-allocated quota. NMFS notes that the public had an VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:01 Oct 04, 2021 Jkt 256001 opportunity to comment on the underlying rulemakings that established the U.S. BFT quota and the inseason adjustment criteria. Therefore, the AA finds good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) to waive prior notice and the opportunity for public comment. For these reasons, there also is good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553(d) to waive the 30day delay in effective date. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 971 et seq. and 1801 et seq. Dated: September 30, 2021. Jennifer M. Wallace, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2021–21718 Filed 9–30–21; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 648 [Docket No. 201209–0332; RTID 0648– XB484] Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Bluefish Fishery; Quota Transfers From VA to RI and NJ to MA National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notification; quota transfers. AGENCY: NMFS announces that the Commonwealth of Virginia and the State of New Jersey are transferring a portion of their 2021 commercial bluefish quota to the State of Rhode Island and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, respectively. These quota adjustments are necessary to comply with the Atlantic Bluefish Fishery Management Plan quota transfer provisions. This announcement informs the public of the revised commercial bluefish quotas for Virginia, Rhode Island, New Jersey, and Massachusetts. DATES: Effective September 30, 2021, through December 31, 2021. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Laura Hansen, Fishery Management Specialist, (978) 281–9225. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Regulations governing the Atlantic bluefish fishery are found in 50 CFR 648.160 through 648.167. These regulations require annual specification SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00075 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 9990 54875 of a commercial quota that is apportioned among the coastal states from Maine through Florida. The process to set the annual commercial quota and the percent allocated to each state is described in § 648.162, and the final 2021 allocations were published on December 16, 2020 (85 FR 81421). The final rule implementing Amendment 1 to the Bluefish Fishery Management Plan (FMP) published in the Federal Register on July 26, 2000 (65 FR 45844), and provided a mechanism for transferring bluefish quota from one state to another. Two or more states, under mutual agreement and with the concurrence of the NMFS Greater Atlantic Regional Administrator, can request approval to transfer or combine bluefish commercial quota under § 648.162(e)(1)(i) through (iii). The Regional Administrator must approve any such transfer based on the criteria in § 648.162(e). In evaluating requests to transfer a quota or combine quotas, the Regional Administrator shall consider whether: The transfer or combinations would preclude the overall annual quota from being fully harvested; the transfer addresses an unforeseen variation or contingency in the fishery; and the transfer is consistent with the objectives of the FMP and the Magnuson-Stevens Act. Virginia is transferring 20,000 lb (9,072 kg) to Rhode Island, and New Jersey is transferring 50,000 lb (22,680 kg) to Massachusetts through mutual agreement of the states. These transfers were requested to ensure that Rhode Island and Massachusetts would not exceed their 2021 state quota. The revised bluefish quotas for 2021 are: Virginia, 238,800 lb (108,318 kg); Rhode Island, 223,434 lb (101,348 kg); New Jersey, 320,082 lb (145,187 kg); and, Massachusetts, 235,904 lb (107,004 kg). Classification NMFS issues this action pursuant to section 305(d) of the Magnuson-Stevens Act. This action is required by 50 CFR 648.162(e)(1)(i) through (iii), which was issued pursuant to section 304(b), and is exempted from review under Executive Order 12866. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Dated: September 30, 2021. Jennifer M. Wallace, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2021–21676 Filed 9–30–21; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P E:\FR\FM\05OCR1.SGM 05OCR1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 190 (Tuesday, October 5, 2021)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Page 54875]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-21676]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 648

[Docket No. 201209-0332; RTID 0648-XB484]


Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Bluefish 
Fishery; Quota Transfers From VA to RI and NJ to MA

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

ACTION: Notification; quota transfers.

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SUMMARY: NMFS announces that the Commonwealth of Virginia and the State 
of New Jersey are transferring a portion of their 2021 commercial 
bluefish quota to the State of Rhode Island and the Commonwealth of 
Massachusetts, respectively. These quota adjustments are necessary to 
comply with the Atlantic Bluefish Fishery Management Plan quota 
transfer provisions. This announcement informs the public of the 
revised commercial bluefish quotas for Virginia, Rhode Island, New 
Jersey, and Massachusetts.

DATES: Effective September 30, 2021, through December 31, 2021.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Laura Hansen, Fishery Management 
Specialist, (978) 281-9225.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Regulations governing the Atlantic bluefish 
fishery are found in 50 CFR 648.160 through 648.167. These regulations 
require annual specification of a commercial quota that is apportioned 
among the coastal states from Maine through Florida. The process to set 
the annual commercial quota and the percent allocated to each state is 
described in Sec.  648.162, and the final 2021 allocations were 
published on December 16, 2020 (85 FR 81421).
    The final rule implementing Amendment 1 to the Bluefish Fishery 
Management Plan (FMP) published in the Federal Register on July 26, 
2000 (65 FR 45844), and provided a mechanism for transferring bluefish 
quota from one state to another. Two or more states, under mutual 
agreement and with the concurrence of the NMFS Greater Atlantic 
Regional Administrator, can request approval to transfer or combine 
bluefish commercial quota under Sec.  648.162(e)(1)(i) through (iii). 
The Regional Administrator must approve any such transfer based on the 
criteria in Sec.  648.162(e). In evaluating requests to transfer a 
quota or combine quotas, the Regional Administrator shall consider 
whether: The transfer or combinations would preclude the overall annual 
quota from being fully harvested; the transfer addresses an unforeseen 
variation or contingency in the fishery; and the transfer is consistent 
with the objectives of the FMP and the Magnuson-Stevens Act.
    Virginia is transferring 20,000 lb (9,072 kg) to Rhode Island, and 
New Jersey is transferring 50,000 lb (22,680 kg) to Massachusetts 
through mutual agreement of the states. These transfers were requested 
to ensure that Rhode Island and Massachusetts would not exceed their 
2021 state quota. The revised bluefish quotas for 2021 are: Virginia, 
238,800 lb (108,318 kg); Rhode Island, 223,434 lb (101,348 kg); New 
Jersey, 320,082 lb (145,187 kg); and, Massachusetts, 235,904 lb 
(107,004 kg).

Classification

    NMFS issues this action pursuant to section 305(d) of the Magnuson-
Stevens Act. This action is required by 50 CFR 648.162(e)(1)(i) through 
(iii), which was issued pursuant to section 304(b), and is exempted 
from review under Executive Order 12866.

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

    Dated: September 30, 2021.
Jennifer M. Wallace,
Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2021-21676 Filed 9-30-21; 4:15 pm]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P