United States Travel and Tourism Advisory Board: Meeting of the United States Travel and Tourism Advisory Board
The United States Travel and Tourism Advisory Board (Board) will hold an open meeting at the Department of Commerce on Friday, November 20, 2015. The Board was re-chartered in August 2015, to advise the Secretary of Commerce on matters relating to the U.S. travel and tourism industry. The purpose of the meeting is for Board members to review and deliberate on recommendations developed by the BrandUSA subcommittee looking at a new vetting process for matching fund requests submitted by Brand USA as well as two recommendations by the Cultural and Natural Heritage subcommittee looking at recommendations of promoting domestic travel and arts funding. The final agenda will be posted on the Department of Commerce Web site for the Board at http://trade.gov/ttab, at least one week in advance of the meeting.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Sablefish in the West Yakutat District of the Gulf of Alaska
NMFS is prohibiting retention of sablefish by vessels using trawl gear in the West Yakutat District of the Gulf of Alaska (GOA). This action is necessary because the 2015 total allowable catch of sablefish allocated to vessels using trawl gear in the West Yakutat District of the GOA will be reached.
Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Atlantic Bluefin Tuna Fisheries
NMFS is transferring 35 metric tons (mt) of Atlantic bluefin tuna (BFT) quota from the Harpoon category and 65 mt from the Reserve category to the General category for the remainder of the 2015 fishing year. This transfer results in adjusted quotas of 566.7 mt, 43.6 mt and 82.1 mt for the General, Harpoon, and Reserve categories, respectively. This action is based on consideration of the regulatory determination criteria regarding inseason adjustments and applies to Atlantic tunas General category (commercial) permitted vessels and Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Charter/Headboat category permitted vessels when fishing commercially for BFT.
Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Exempted Fishing, Scientific Research, Display, Shark Research Fishery, and Chartering Permits; Letters of Acknowledgment
NMFS announces its intent to issue Exempted Fishing Permits (EFPs), Scientific Research Permits (SRPs), Display Permits, Letters of Acknowledgment (LOAs), Shark Research Fishery Permits, and Chartering Permits for Atlantic highly migratory species (HMS) in 2016. Exempted fishing permits and related permits would authorize collection of a limited number of tunas, swordfish, billfishes, and sharks (collectively known as HMS) from Federal waters in the Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea, and Gulf of Mexico for the purposes of scientific data collection, bycatch research, and public display. Chartering permits allow the collection of HMS on the high seas or in the Exclusive Economic Zone of other nations under certain conditions. Generally, EFPs and related permits will be valid from the date of issuance through December 31, 2016, unless otherwise specified, subject to the terms and conditions of individual permits.
Proposed Amendments to the Rules of Practice for Trials Before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board; Reopening of Period for Comments
The Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (AIA) provided for new administrative trial proceedings before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (Board). The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) issued a number of final rules and a trial practice guide in August and September of 2012 to implement the new administrative trial provisions of the AIA. The USPTO published a request for comments in the Federal Register on June 27, 2014, seeking public comment on all aspects of the new administrative trial proceedings, including the administrative trial proceeding rules and trial practice guide. In response to comments received by the public, the USPTO issued a first, final rule, which was published on May 19, 2015. That final rule addressed issues concerning the patent owner's motion to amend and the petitioner's reply brief that involved ministerial changes. The USPTO issued a second, proposed rule that addresses more involved proposed changes to the rules concerning the claim construction standard for AIA trials, new testimonial evidence submitted with a patent owner's preliminary response, Rule 11-type certification, and word count for major briefing. The USPTO is now extending the period for public comment on the second, proposed rule until November 18, 2015.
Proposed Pilot Program Exploring an Alternative Approach to Institution Decisions in Post Grant Administrative Reviews; Reopening of Period for Comments
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is requesting comments on a proposed pilot program pertaining to the institution and conduct of the post grant administrative trials provided for in the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (AIA), Public Law 112-29, 125 Stat. 284 (2011). The AIA provides for the following post grant administrative trials: Inter Partes Review (IPR), Post-Grant Review (PGR), and Covered Business Method Patent Review (CBM). The USPTO currently has a panel of three Administrative Patent Judges (APJs) decide whether to institute a trial, and then normally has the same three-APJ panel conduct the trial, if instituted. The USPTO is considering a pilot program under which the determination of whether to institute an IPR will be made by a single APJ, with two additional APJs being assigned to the IPR if a trial is instituted. Under this pilot program, any IPR trial will be conducted by a panel of three APJs, two of whom were not involved in the determination to institute the IPR. The USPTO published a request for comments in the Federal Register on August 25, 2015, seeking public comment on a proposed pilot program pertaining to the institution and conduct of these post grant administrative trial proceedings. See Request for Comments on a Proposed Pilot Program Exploring an Alternative Approach to Institution Decisions in Post Grant Administrative Reviews, 80 FR 51540 (Aug. 25, 2015). The USPTO is now extending the period for public comment until November 18, 2015.
Initiation of Five-Year (“Sunset”) Review
In accordance with section 751(c) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (``the Act''), the Department of Commerce (``the Department'') is automatically initiating the five-year review (``Sunset Review'') of the antidumping and countervailing duty (``AD/ CVD'') orders listed below. The International Trade Commission (``the Commission'') is publishing concurrently with this notice its notice of Institution of Five-Year Review which covers the same orders.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Herring Fishery; 2015 Management Area 1A Seasonal Annual Catch Limit Harvested
NMFS is implementing a 2,000 lb possession limit for Atlantic herring in or from management Area 1A, based on the projection that 92 percent of the 2015 annual seasonal catch limit for that area will have been harvested by the effective date. Federally permitted vessels may not fish for, possess, transfer, receive, land, or sell more than 2,000 lb (907.2 kg) of Atlantic herring in or from Area 1A for the remainder of the fishing year, and federally permitted dealers may not purchase more than 2,000 lb (907.2 kg) of herring from federally permitted vessels for the duration of this action. This action is necessary to comply with the regulations implementing the Atlantic Herring Fishery Management Plan and is intended to prevent over harvest in Area 1A.
Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; Fisheries Off West Coast States; Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery; 2015-2016 Biennial Specifications and Management Measures; Inseason Adjustments
This final rule announces inseason changes to management measures in the Pacific Coast groundfish fisheries. This action, which is authorized by the Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery Management Plan (PCGFMP), is intended to allow fisheries to access more abundant groundfish stocks while protecting overfished and depleted stocks.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Marine Geophysical Survey in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea, Mid-November to December 2015
In accordance with the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) implementing regulations, we hereby give notice that we have issued an Incidental Harassment Authorization (Authorization) to Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory (Lamont-Doherty), a component of Columbia University, in collaboration with the National Science Foundation (NSF), to take marine mammals, by harassment, in the eastern Mediterranean Sea, mid-November through December 2015.
Availability of Seats for National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Councils
ONMS is seeking applications for vacant seats for five of its 13 national marine sanctuary advisory councils (advisory councils). Vacant seats, including positions (i.e., primary member and alternate), for each of the advisory councils are listed in this notice under Supplementary Information. Applicants are chosen based upon their particular expertise and experience in relation to the seat for which they are applying; community and professional affiliations; views regarding the protection and management of marine or Great Lake resources; and possibly the length of residence in the area affected by the sanctuary. Applicants who are chosen as members or alternates should expect to serve two- or three year terms, pursuant to the charter of the specific national marine sanctuary advisory council.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Construction of the Block Island Transmission System
Notice is hereby given that we have revised an incidental harassment authorization (IHA) issued to The Narragansett Electric Company, doing business as National Grid (TNEC), to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to construction of the Block Island Transmission System (BITS). The project has been delayed and the effective dates revised accordingly.
New England Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
The New England Fishery Management Council (Council) is scheduling a public meeting of its Scallop Committee Meeting on Thursday, November 19, 2015 to consider actions affecting New England fisheries in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ). Recommendations from this group will be brought to the full Council for formal consideration and action, if appropriate.
New England Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
The New England Fishery Management Council (Council) is scheduling a public meeting of its Scallop Advisory Panel on Wednesday, November 18, 2015, to consider actions affecting New England fisheries in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ). Recommendations from this group will be brought to the full Council for formal consideration and action, if appropriate.
New England Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
The New England Fishery Management Council (Council) is scheduling a public meeting of its Groundfish Committee to consider actions affecting New England fisheries in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ). Recommendations from this group will be brought to the full Council for formal consideration and action, if appropriate.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Inseason Adjustment to the 2015 Gulf of Alaska Pollock Seasonal Apportionments
NMFS is adjusting the 2015 seasonal apportionments of the total allowable catch (TAC) for pollock in the Gulf of Alaska (GOA) by re-apportioning unharvested pollock TAC in Statistical Areas 610, 620, and 630 of the GOA. This action is necessary to provide opportunity for harvest of the 2015 pollock TAC, consistent with the goals and objectives of the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Gulf of Alaska.
Endangered and Threatened Species; Recovery Plans
We, NMFS, announce that the Proposed Endangered Species Act (ESA) Recovery Plan for Snake River Fall Chinook Salmon (Proposed Plan) is available for public review and comment. The Proposed Plan addresses the Snake River Fall Chinook Salmon (Onchorhynchus tshawytscha) evolutionarily significant unit (ESU), which is listed as threatened under the ESA. The geographic area covered by the Proposed Plan is the lower and middle mainstem Snake River and tributaries as well as the mainstem Columbia River below its confluence with the Snake River. As required under the ESA, the Proposed Plan contains objective, measurable delisting criteria, site-specific management actions necessary to achieve the Proposed Plan's goals, and estimates of the time and cost required to implement recovery actions. We are soliciting review and comment from the public and all interested parties on the Proposed Plan.
Caribbean Fishery Management Council; Public Hearings; Correction
The Caribbean Fishery Management Council (CFMC) is considering modifying the timing for the implementation of accountability measure (AM)-based closures in the Caribbean Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) and specifying how often to revisit the modification. The Council is considering these management measures in order to ensure AM-based closures successfully achieve their conservation objective and, to the extent practicable, minimize adverse economic impacts to fishers and fishing communities, consistent with National Standard 8 of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. Following are the actions and management alternatives: The Draft Amendment consists of two actions: Action 1: Modify the timing for the implementation of AM-based closures in the EEZ; Alternative 1: No action. Continue AM-based closures resulting from an annual catch limit (ACL) overage beginning on December 31st of the closure year and extending backward into the year for the number of days neccesary to achieve the required reduction in landings. Preferred Alternative 2: Accountability measure-based closures resulting from an ACL overage will begin on September 30th of the closure year and would extend backward into the year for the number of days necessary to achieve the required reduction in landings. This closure start date would apply to all fishery management units (FMUs) for each of Puerto Rico commercial and recreational sectors, St. Thomas/St. John, St. Croix, and Caribbean-wide. If for any FMU in any year, the number of available days running from September 30th backward to the beginning of the year is not enough to achieve the required reduction in landings, then the additional days needed would be captured by extending the closure forward, beginning on October 1st and continuing for however many days are needed to fulfill the required reduction. Alternative 3: Accountability measure-based closures resulting from an ACL overage will begin on January 1st of the closure year and extend forward into the year for the number of days necessary to achieve the required reduction in landing. This closure start date would apply to all FMUs for each of Puerto Rico commercial and recreational sectors, St. Thomas/St. John, St. Croix, and Caribbean-wide. Alternative 4: Establish a fixed fishing closure start date for the implementation of AMs for each FMU by island/island group (A. Puerto Rico, B. St. Thomas/St. John, C. St. Croix, and D. Caribbean-wide). A different start date may be chosen for each FMU on each island/island group. The start date will begin on the last day of the identified month and go backward towards the beginning of the year. If for any FMU in any year, the number of days left in the year is not enough to achieve the required reduction in landings, then those additional days would be captured by extending the closure forward toward the end of the year.
New England Fishery Management Council; Public Meetings
The New England Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold one public hearing and one webinar to solicit Public comments on Draft Amendment 19 to the Scallop Fishery Management Plan (FMP).
North Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
The North Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) Groundfish Plan Team will meet in Seattle, WA.
Fisheries of the South Atlantic; Southeast Data, Assessment, and Review (SEDAR); Public Meeting
The SEDAR 41 assessments of the South Atlantic stocks of red snapper and gray triggerfish will consist of a series of workshop and webinars: Data Workshops; an Assessment Workshop and webinars; and a Review Workshop. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.
New England Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
The New England Fishery Management Council (Council) is scheduling a public meeting of its Recreational Advisory Panel to consider actions affecting New England fisheries in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ). Recommendations from this group will be brought to the full Council for formal consideration and action, if appropriate.