Caribbean Fishery Management Council; Scoping Meetings
The Caribbean Fishery Management Council will hold scoping meetings to obtain input from fishers, the general public, and the local agencies representatives on the Document for Amendment 2 to the Fishery Management Plan for the Queen Conch Fishery of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands and Amendment X to the Reef Fish Fishery Management Plan of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands (Including the Final Environmental Impact Statement, Regulatory Impact Review, and Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis).
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Northeast Multispecies Fishery; Secretarial Interim Action
NMFS implements this final interim rule pursuant to its authority to issue interim management measures under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson- Stevens Act). This action is intended to immediately reduce overfishing on certain stocks managed by the Northeast (NE) Multispecies Fishery Management Plan (FMP), without jeopardizing the likelihood that overfished stocks can achieve rebuilding objectives until long-term measures can be implemented under Amendment 16 to the FMP. Measures for the commercial fishery include an expanded differential days-at-sea (DAS) area in Southern New England (SNE), where a vessel will be charged 2 days for every day fished, and modified groundfish trip limits. In addition, this action maintains the scheduled fishing year (FY) 2009 DAS reduction included in the FMP, which results in an approximate 18-percent reduction in Category A DAS. For private recreational vessels fishing in the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), and for federally permitted charter/party vessels, this action extends in time a seasonal prohibition on the possession of Gulf of Maine (GOM) cod, and prohibits the possession of SNE/Mid-Atlantic (MA) winter flounder. For federally permitted charter/party vessels, this action implements a trip limit for Georges Bank (GB) cod. In addition, this action implements measures to mitigate some of the negative, short-term economic impacts of the FMP by expanding the Closed Area I (CA I) Hook Gear Haddock Special Access Program (SAP); modifying the DAS Leasing Program, the Regular B DAS Program, and the DAS Transfer Program; continuing the Eastern U.S./Canada Haddock SAP; and implementing a reduction in the haddock minimum size to 18 inches (45 cm) for both commercial and recreational vessels. This action also specifies management measures for the U.S./Canada Management Area for FY 2009. NMFS anticipates that the interim measures will need to be renewed upon the rule's expiration for an additional 185 days. Therefore, NMFS is requesting public comments on these measures; comments received will be considered during any subsequent action to extend this final interim rule.