Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; One Year Assessment of the Social and Economic Impacts of Hurricane Sandy on New Jersey and New York Commercial and Recreational Fishing Industries
The Department of Commerce, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on proposed and/or continuing information collections, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Arrowtooth Flounder in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area
NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for arrowtooth flounder in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands management area (BSAI). This action is necessary to prevent exceeding the 2013 arrowtooth flounder initial total allowable catch (ITAC) in the BSAI.
Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meetings
The Pacific Fishery Management Council (Pacific Council) and its advisory entities will hold public meetings.
South Atlantic Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
In addition to a Swearing-In Ceremony for new South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) Members and a Council Member Visioning Workshop, the Council will hold a meetings of the: Ecosystem- Based Management Committee: Dolphin Wahoo Committee; Southeast Data, Assessment and Review Committee (partially Closed Session); Snapper Grouper Committee; King & Spanish Mackerel Committee; Advisory Panel Selection Committee (closed session); Protected Resources Committee; Executive Finance Committee; Data Collection Committee; and a meeting of the Full Council. The Council will take action as necessary. The Council will also hold an informal public question and answer session regarding agenda items and a formal public comment session.
Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council's (Council) Mackerel, Squid, and Butterfish Advisory Panel (AP) will meet to develop recommendations for Georges Bank yellowtail flounder accountability measures.
Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council's (MAFMC) Bluefish Monitoring Committee and Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass Monitoring Committee will hold a public meeting.
Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; 2014 Atlantic Shark Commercial Fishing Season
This proposed rule would establish opening dates and adjust quotas for the 2014 fishing season for the Atlantic commercial shark fisheries. Quotas would be adjusted as allowable based on any over- and/or underharvests experienced during 2013 and previous fishing seasons. In addition, NMFS proposes season openings based on adaptive management measures to provide, to the extent practicable, fishing opportunities for commercial shark fishermen in all regions and areas. The proposed measures could affect fishing opportunities for commercial shark fishermen in the northwestern Atlantic Ocean, including the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Sea.
Pacific Fishery Management Council; Notice of Intent
NMFS and the Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) announce their intent to prepare an EIS in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969 to analyze the long-term impacts on the human (biological, physical, social, and economic) environment of setting harvest specifications (including Overfishing Limits (OFLs), Acceptable Biological Catches (ABCs), and Annual Catch Limits (ACLs)) and management measures, and implementing harvest specifications and management measures in Federal regulations for 2015 and 2016, pursuant to the Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery Management Plan.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental To Conducting Maritime Strike Operations by Eglin Air Force Base in the Gulf of Mexico
In accordance with the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) regulations, notification is hereby given that NMFS has issued an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to the U.S. Air Force (USAF), Eglin Air Force Base (Eglin AFB), to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to Maritime Strike Operations in the Gulf of Mexico (GOM). The USAF's activities are considered military readiness activities.
Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; 2006 Consolidated Highly Migratory Species Fishery Management Plan; Amendment 7
NMFS will publish a proposed rule for Draft Amendment 7 to the 2006 Consolidated Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Fishery Management Plan (FMP) to control bluefin incidental catch (landings and dead discards) in the pelagic longline fishery, enhance reporting in all categories, and ensure U.S. compliance with the ICCAT-recommend quota. As described in the proposed rule, the proposed measures include Allocation measures, Area-Based measures, Bluefin Quota Controls, Enhanced Reporting measures, and other measures that modify rules with respect to how the various quota categories utilize quota. In this notice, NMFS announces the dates and logistics for 10 public hearings to provide additional opportunities for members of the public to comment on the bluefin management measures proposed in Draft Amendment 7. NMFS will also consult with the HMS Advisory Panel during its meeting scheduled September 9-12, 2013. There will be opportunities for public comment during open sessions held each day of the Advisory Panel meeting.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to a Wharf Recapitalization Project
NMFS has received a request from the U.S. Navy (Navy) for authorization to take marine mammals incidental to construction activities as part of a wharf recapitalization project. Pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is requesting public comment on its proposal to issue an incidental harassment authorization (IHA) to the Navy to take, by harassment only, two species of marine mammal during the specified activity.
Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (MAFMC); Public Meeting; Correction
The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council's (Council) Spiny Dogfish Advisory Panel (AP) will meet to develop a Fishery Performance Report for the Spiny Dogfish fishery in preparation for the Council and the Council's Scientific and Statistical Committee review of specifications that have been set for the 2014 fishing year.
Main Hawaiian Islands Deep 7 Bottomfish Annual Catch Limits and Accountability Measures for 2013-14
NMFS proposes to specify an annual catch limit of 346,000 lb for Deep 7 bottomfish in the main Hawaiian Islands for the 2013-14 fishing year. If and when the annual catch limit is projected to be reached, NMFS would close the commercial and non-commercial fisheries for MHI Deep 7 bottomfish for the remainder of the fishing year. The proposed specifications and fishery closure support the long-term sustainability of Hawaii bottomfish.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Thornyhead Rockfish in the Western Regulatory Area of the Gulf of Alaska
NMFS is prohibiting retention of thornyhead rockfish in the Western Regulatory Area of the Gulf of Alaska (GOA). This action is necessary because the 2013 total allowable catch of thornyhead rockfish in the Western Regulatory Area of the GOA has been reached.
North Pacific Fishery Management Council (NPFMC); Public Meetings
The North Pacific Fishery Management Council's (Council) Gulf of Alaska (GOA) and Bering Sea/Aleutian Islands (BS/AI) groundfish plan teams will meet in Seattle, WA.
New England Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
The New England Fishery Management Council (Council) is scheduling a public meeting of its Whiting Advisory Panel on September 9, 2013 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 Joint Groundfish/Habitat Committees on September 5, 2013 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.
National Climate Assessment and Development Advisory Committee (NCADAC)
This notice sets forth the schedule of a forthcoming meeting of the DoC NOAA National Climate Assessment and Development Advisory Committee (NCADAC). Time and Date: The meeting will be held Monday, September 9, 2013 from 3:00 p.m.-5:00 p.m. Eastern time. Place: This meeting will be a conference call. Public access and materials will be available at the office of the U.S. Global Change Research Program, Conference Room A, Suite 250, 1717 Pennsylvania Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20006. The public will not be able to dial into the call. Please check the National Climate Assessment Web site for additional information at http://www.globalchange.gov/what-we-do/ assessment. Status: The meeting will be open to public participation with a 10- minute public comment period from 4:45-4:55 p.m. The NCADAC expects that public statements presented at its meetings will not be repetitive of previously submitted verbal or written statements. In general, each individual or group making a verbal presentation will be limited to a total time of two minutes. Written comments should be received in the NCADAC DFO's office by Tuesday, September 3, 2013 to provide sufficient time for NCADAC review. Written comments received by the NCADAC DFO after Tuesday, September 3, 2013 will be distributed to the NCADAC, but may not be reviewed prior to the meeting date. Special Accommodations: These meetings are physically accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for special accommodations may be directed no later than 12 p.m. on Tuesday, September 3, 2013 to Dr. Cynthia Decker, SAB Executive Director, SSMC3, Room 11230, 1315 East- West Hwy., Silver Spring, MD 20910. Matters To Be Considered: Please refer to the Web page http:// www.nesdis.noaa.gov/NCADAC/Meetings.html for the most up-to-date meeting agenda, when available.
Endangered Species; File No. 16733
Notice is hereby given that NMFS Southeast Fisheries Science Center (SEFSC; Responsible Party: Bonnie Ponwith), 75 Virginia Beach Dr., Miami, FL 33149 has been issued a permit to take loggerhead (Caretta caretta), green (Chelonia mydas), Kemp's ridley (Lepidochelys kempii), hawksbill (Eretmochelys imbricata), leatherback (Dermochelys coriacea), and olive ridley (L. olivacea) sea turtles for purposes of scientific research.
Notice of Availability of Draft Environmental Assessment on the Effects of Issuing an Incidental Take Permit No. 18102
NMFS announces the availability of the ``Draft Environmental Assessment (EA) on the Effects of Issuing an Incidental Take Permit (No. 18102) to the North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries for the Incidental Take of Atlantic Sturgeon Distinct Population Segments in the North Carolina Inshore Gillnet Fishery.'' Publication of this notice begins the official public comment period for this draft EA. Per the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the purpose of the draft EA is to evaluate the potential direct, indirect, and cumulative impacts caused by the issuance of Permit No. 18102 to the North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries (NCDMF) for the incidental take of Atlantic sturgeon (Acipenser oxyrinchus oxyrinchus) Gulf of Maine, New York Bight, Chesapeake, Carolina, and South Atlantic Distinct Population Segments (DPSs) associated with the otherwise lawful commercial and recreational fisheries operating in estuarine waters and deploying anchored gill nets (i.e., passive gill net sets deployed with an anchor or stake at one or both ends of the nets). All comments received will become part of the public record and will be available for review. An electronic copy of the revised application and proposed conservation plan may be obtained by contacting NMFS Office of Protected Resources (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT) or visiting the Internet at www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/esa_review.htm.
Proposed Designation of Marine Critical Habitat for the Loggerhead Sea Turtle, Caretta caretta, Under the Endangered Species Act; Public Hearing
We, NMFS, will hold public hearings related to our Proposed Designation of Marine Critical Habitat for the Loggerhead Sea Turtle, Caretta caretta, under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).
Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; 2006 Consolidated Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Fishery Management Plan; Amendment 7
NMFS proposes regulations to implement management measures in Amendment 7 to the 2006 Consolidated Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Fishery Management Plan (2006 Consolidated HMS FMP) to ensure sustainable management of bluefin tuna consistent with the 2006 HMS FMP addressing ongoing management challenges in the Atlantic bluefin tuna fisheries. Amendment 7 also proposes minor regulatory changes related to the management of Atlantic HMS. Amendment 7 was developed by NMFS under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act) and the Atlantic Tunas Convention Act (ATCA). The proposed measures would reallocate the U.S. bluefin tuna quota among domestic fishing categories. The rule would also implement several actions applicable to the pelagic longline fishery, including: Individual Bluefin Quotas (IBQs); two new Gear Restricted Areas, access to current closed areas based on performance criteria; closure of the pelagic longline fishery when annual bluefin tuna quota is reached; elimination of target catch requirements associated with retention of incidental bluefin tuna in the pelagic longline fishery; mandatory retention of legal-sized bluefin tuna caught as bycatch; expanded monitoring requirements, including electronic monitoring via cameras and bluefin tuna catch reporting via Vessel Monitoring System (VMS); and transiting provisions for pelagic and bottom longline vessels. The proposed rule would also require VMS use and reporting by the Purse Seine category; change the start date of the Purse Seine category to June 1; expand Automated Catch Reporting System use to the General and Harpoon categories; provide additional flexibilities for inseason adjustment of the General category quota and Harpoon category retention limits; and allocate a portion of the Angling category Trophy South subquota to the Gulf of Mexico. Finally, it would adopt several measures not directly related to bluefin tuna management, including implementing a U.S. North Atlantic albacore tuna quota; modifying rules regarding permit category changes; and implementing minor changes in the Highly Migratory Species regulations for administrative or clarification purposes.
Highly Migratory Species; 2006 Consolidated Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Fishery Management Plan; Amendment 8
This final rule implements Amendment 8 to the 2006 Consolidated Atlantic Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Fishery Management Plan (FMP). Amendment 8 to the 2006 Consolidated HMS FMP provides additional opportunities for U.S. fishermen to harvest swordfish using selective gears that are low in bycatch, given their rebuilt status and increased availability. This final rule creates new and modified commercial fishing vessel permits that allow permit holders to retain and sell a limited number of swordfish caught on rod and reel, handline, harpoon, green-stick, or bandit gear. Specific management measures under this final action include the establishment of a new open access commercial swordfish permit, modification of HMS Charter/ Headboat permit regulations to allow for the commercial retention of swordfish on non-for-hire trips, regional swordfish retention limits for the new and modified permits, gear authorizations, and reporting requirements.
Fisheries Off West Coast States; Coastal Pelagic Species Fisheries; Closure
NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for Pacific sardine off the coasts of Washington, Oregon and California. This action is necessary because the directed harvest allocation total for the second seasonal period (July 1-September 14) is projected to be reached by the effective date of this rule. From the effective date of this rule until September 15, 2013, Pacific sardine may be harvested only as part of the live bait fishery or incidental to other fisheries; the incidental harvest of Pacific sardine is limited to 40-percent by weight of all fish per trip. Fishing vessels must be at shore and in the process of offloading at 12:01 a.m. Pacific Daylight Time, August 22, 2013.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Summer Flounder Fishery; Commercial Quota Harvested for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts
NMFS announces that the 2013 summer flounder commercial quota allocated to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts has been harvested. Vessels issued a commercial Federal fisheries permit for the summer flounder fishery may not land summer flounder in Massachusetts for the remainder of calendar year 2013, unless additional quota becomes available through a transfer from another state. Regulations governing the summer flounder fishery require publication of this notification to advise Massachusetts that the quota has been harvested and to advise vessel permit holders and dealer permit holders that no Federal commercial quota is available for landing summer flounder in Massachusetts.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Coastal Fisheries Cooperative Management Act Provisions; American Lobster Fishery
Based on Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (Commission) recommendations, the NMFS is issuing this advance notice of proposed rulemaking to provide background information and request public comment on potential changes to Federal American lobster regulations. The proposed measures for the lobster trap fishery are intended to address the Commission's recommendations for Federal action to address the poor condition of the Southern New England (SNE) lobster stock and foster stock rebuilding. The rulemaking action considers management measures that would reduce lobster exploitation by 10 percent and reduce trap fishing effort in the SNE lobster management areas.
Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Snapper-Grouper Fishery off the South Atlantic States; Amendment 22; Correction
This document contains a correction to a supplemental NOI published in the Federal Register on August 2, 2013, regarding the implementation of management measures described in Amendment 22 to the Fishery Management Plan for the Snapper-Grouper Fishery in the South Atlantic Region (Amendment 22). The document contained an incorrect docket number in the ADDRESSES section. This document corrects that mistake. NMFS is extending until October 3, 2013, the period for public comment regarding the management measures described in Amendment 22. NMFS is extending the comment period to ensure there is adequate time to submit complete responses.
Fisheries Off West Coast States; Modifications of the West Coast Commercial Salmon Fisheries; Inseason Actions #6 Through #11
NOAA Fisheries announces six inseason actions in the ocean salmon fisheries. These inseason actions modified the commercial fisheries in the area from the U.S./Canada Border to Humboldt South Jetty.
Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Atlantic Bluefin Tuna Fisheries
NMFS is adjusting the Atlantic bluefin tuna (BFT) General category daily retention limit from the default limit of one large medium or giant BFT to three large medium or giant BFT for the September, October through November, and December time periods of the 2013 fishing year. 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.
Endangered Species; File Nos. 17557 and 17273
Notice is hereby given that the National Ocean Service Marine Forensic Lab (NOS Lab) [Responsible Party: M. Katherine Moore], 219 Fort Johnson Road, Charleston, SC 29412 (File No. 17557), and the NOAA Fisheries Northeast Region, Protected Resources Division [Responsible Party: Mary Colligan], 1 Blackburn Drive, Gloucester, MA 01930 (File No. 17273), have been issued permits to take marine mammal and endangered species parts for purposes of scientific research.
Endangered Species; File No. 17405
Notice is hereby given that David Lapota, Ph.D., Department of the Navy, SPAWAR Systems Center, Pacific, Environmental Sciences Division, 53475 Strothe Road, San Diego, CA 92152, has been issued a permit to take black abalone (Haliotis cracherodii) for purposes of scientific research.
Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council's (MAFMC) Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass Advisory Panel (AP) will hold a public meeting.
Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act Provisions; Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Surfclam and Ocean Quahog Fishery
This final rule reopens an additional portion of the Georges Bank Closed Area to the harvest of Atlantic surfclams and ocean quahogs. This final rule follows up on a preceding interim final rule that was published in the Federal Register on December 19, 2012. The previous interim final rule reopened a portion of the Georges Bank Closed Area that had been closed to the harvest of Atlantic surfclams and ocean quahogs since 1990 due to the presence of toxins known to cause paralytic shellfish poisoning. However, the area reopened in the interim final rule was reduced in size from the area identified in the proposed rule. Based on comments received on the interim final rule and requests from the New England and Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Councils, this final rule will reopen an additional portion of the Georges Bank Closed Area.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife; 90-Day Finding on a Petition To List the Whale Shark as Threatened or Endangered Under the Endangered Species Act
We (NMFS) announce a 90-day finding on a petition to list the whale shark (Rhincodon typus) as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). We find that the petition does not present substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned action may be warranted.
Implementation of New Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Science, Observation, Monitoring, and Technology Program
NOAA announces the implementation, under the authority of the Resources and Ecosystem Sustainability, Tourist Opportunities, and Revived Economies of the Gulf Coast States Act (RESTORE Act) of 2012, of a new competitive science program to ensure the long-term sustainability of the Gulf of Mexico ecosystem and the communities that depend on it.
National Estuarine Research Reserve System
Notice is hereby given that the Estuarine Reserves Division, Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management, National Ocean Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce is announcing a thirty day public comment period for the Wells, Maine National Estuarine Research Reserve Management Plan revision. Pursuant to 15 CFR Section 921.33(c), the revised plan meets the reserve's requirements for compliance. The Wells Reserve Management Plan revision will replace the plan approved in 2007. The revised management plan outlines the administrative structure; the research & monitoring, education, training, and stewardship goals of the reserve; and the plans for future land acquisition and facility development to support reserve operations. The Wells, Maine National Estuarine Research Reserve takes an integrated approach to management, linking research, education, training and stewardship functions to address high priority issues including the impact of climate change of coastal ecosystems and communities, development pressures, population growth, land-use change, habitat fragmentation, and water quality degradation. Since the last management plan, the reserve implemented its core programs and expanded its monitoring infrastructure to include Sentinel Site protocols; enhanced its facilities, including new Visitor Center exhibits and interpretive trail signs; constructed an environmental chamber for year-round research; and furthered land conservation in the reserve's targeted watersheds. The revised management plan will serve as the guiding document for the 2,250 acre Wells National Estuarine Research Reserve for the next five years. The Wells National Estuarine Research Reserve Management Plan revision can be viewed at www.wellsreserve.org. Comments can be provided to Paul Dest, Reserve Director at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hydrographic Services Review Panel
This notice responds to the Hydrographic Service Improvements Act Amendments of 2002, Public Law 107-372, which requires the Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), to solicit nominations for membership on the Hydrographic Services Review Panel (HSRP). The HSRP, a Federal advisory committee, advises the Administrator on matters related to the responsibilities and authorities set forth in section 303 of the Hydrographic Services Improvement Act (HSIA) of 1998 (as amended) and such other appropriate matters as the Administrator refers to the Panel for review and advice. Those responsibilities and authorities include, but are not limited to: Acquiring and disseminating hydrographic data and providing hydrographic services, as those terms are defined in the Act; promulgating standards for hydrographic data and services; ensuring comprehensive geographic coverage of hydrographic services; and testing, developing, and operating vessels, equipment, and technologies necessary to ensure safe navigation and maintain operational expertise in hydrographic data acquisition and hydrographic services. The Act states that ``voting members of the Panel shall be individuals who, by reason of knowledge, experience, or training, are especially qualified in one or more of the disciplines and fields relating to hydrographic data and hydrographic services, marine transportation, port administration, vessel pilotage, coastal and fishery management, and other disciplines as determined appropriate by the Administrator.'' The NOAA Administrator welcomes applications from individuals with expertise in navigation data, products and services; marine cartography and geospatial information systems; geodesy; physical oceanography; coastal resource management, including fisheries management and regional marine planning; and other science-related fields. To apply for membership on the Panel, applicants are asked to provide: (1) A cover letter that includes responses to the ``Short Response Questions'' listed below, and (2) a current resume (see ADDRESSES section). NOAA is an equal opportunity employer. Short Response Questions: (1) What area(s) of expertise, as listed above, would you best represent on this panel? (2) What geographic region(s) of the country do you primarily associate your expertise with? (3) Describe your leadership or professional experiences which you believe will contribute to the effectiveness of this panel. (4) Generally describe the breadth and scope of stakeholders, users, or other groups whose views and input you believe you can represent on the panel.
Boundary Expansion of Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary
On June 14, 2013, NOAA published a proposed rule in the Federal Register to revise the regulations for the boundary of the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary (78 FR 35776). This notice reopens the public comment period stated in that proposed rule until October 18, 2013.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; U.S. Air Force Launches, Aircraft and Helicopter Operations, and Harbor Activities Related to Launch Vehicles From Vandenberg Air Force Base (VAFB), California
NMFS has received a request from the U.S. Air Force (USAF) for authorization to take marine mammals incidental to launching space launch vehicles, intercontinental ballistic and small missiles, aircraft and helicopter operations, and harbor activities related to the Delta IV/Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) at VAFB, CA, from February 2014 through February 2019. Pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is announcing our receipt of the USAF's request for the development and implementation of regulations governing the incidental taking of marine mammals and inviting information, suggestions, and comments on the USAF's application and request.
Availability of Seats for National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Councils
ONMS is seeking applications for vacant seats for 8 of its 13 national marine sanctuary advisory councils and for the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands Coral Reef Ecosystem Reserve Advisory Council (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; philosophy regarding the protection and management of marine resources; and possibly the length of residence in the area affected by the sanctuary. Applicants who are chosen as primary members or alternates should expect to serve two- or three year terms, pursuant to the charter of the specific national marine sanctuary advisory council or the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands Coral Reef Ecosystem Reserve Advisory Council.
Updates to List of National System of Marine Protected Areas MPAs
The National System of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) provides a mechanism for agencies managing MPAs to work together on common conservation priorities. In January 2013, NOAA and the Department of the Interior (DOI) invited federal, state, commonwealth, territorial and tribal MPA programs with potentially eligible existing MPAs to nominate their sites to the National System of MPAs (national system). A total of 82 nominations were received, including 80 from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife and two from the National Park Service. Following a 60-day public review period of these nominations [78 FR 30870], no public comments were received by the National Marine Protected Areas Center (MPA Center). The managing agencies listed above were then asked to make a final determination of their desire to nominate these sites to the national system, which they subsequently confirmed. Finding them to be eligible for the national system, the MPA Center has accepted the nominations for 82 sites and placed them on the List of National System MPAs.
National Saltwater Angler Registry Program
NMFS has established an annual fee of twenty-five dollars ($25.00) for registration of anglers, spear fishers and for-hire fishing vessels to register under the National Saltwater Angler Registry Program.
Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Reef Fish Fishery of the Gulf of Mexico; Red Snapper Management Measures
NMFS proposes to implement management measures described in a framework action to the Fishery Management Plan for the Reef Fish Resources of the Gulf of Mexico (FMP), as prepared by the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council (Council). If implemented, this rule would increase the 2013 commercial and recreational quotas for red snapper in the Gulf of Mexico (Gulf) reef fish fishery and re-open the red snapper recreational season for 2013. This proposed rule is intended to help achieve optimum yield (OY) for the Gulf red snapper resource without increasing the risk of red snapper experiencing overfishing.
Marine Mammals; File No. 17996
Notice is hereby given that a permit has been issued to Silverback Films Ltd, 59 Cotham Hill, Cotham, Bristol, BS6 6JR, United Kingdom, to conduct commercial or educational photography of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).
Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
The Pacific Fishery Management Council (Pacific Council) will convene a meeting of its Groundfish Essential Fish Habitat Review Committee (EFHRC).
Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting; Correction
The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold meetings of the Sustainable Fisheries/Ecosystem, Red Drum, Mackerel, Ad Hoc Restoration, Administrative Policy, Advisory Panel Selection, Reef Fish, Data Collection, and Joint Coral/Habitat Protection Management Committees; and a meeting of the Full Council. The Council will also hold an informal public question and answer session regarding agenda items and a formal public comment session.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Reallocation of Pollock in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands
NMFS is reallocating the projected unused amounts of the Aleut Corporation's pollock directed fishing allowance from the Aleutian Islands subarea to the Bering Sea subarea directed fisheries. This action is necessary to provide opportunity for harvest of the 2013 total allowable catch of pollock, consistent with the goals and objectives of the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area.
Fisheries in the Western Pacific; Special Coral Reef Ecosystem Fishing Permit
NMFS proposes to issue a Special Coral Reef Ecosystem Fishing Permit that would authorize Kampachi Farms, LLC, to culture and harvest a coral reef ecosystem management unit fish species in a floating pen moored about 5.5 nm off the west coast of the Island of Hawaii in about 6,000 ft of water. This notice informs the public that NMFS prepared a draft environmental assessment (EA) of the potential impacts of the proposed activity.
Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Snapper-Grouper Fishery Off the Southern Atlantic States; Regulatory Amendment 15
NMFS implements management measures described in a regulatory amendment (Regulatory Amendment 15) to the Fishery Management Plan for the Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic Region (FMP), as prepared by the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council). This final rule increases the commercial and recreational ACLs for yellowtail snapper, decreases the commercial ACL for gag, and revises the accountability measure (AM) for gag by removing the requirement that all other South Atlantic shallow-water grouper (SASWG) are prohibited from harvest when the gag commercial ACL is met or projected to be met. In addition, Regulatory Amendment 15 revises the optimum yield (OY) for yellowtail snapper and increases the recreational annual catch target (ACT) for yellowtail snapper harvested in or from the South Atlantic exclusive economic zone (EEZ). This final rule also includes several administrative changes to regulatory text, which are unrelated to the measures contained in Regulatory Amendment 15. The purpose of Regulatory Amendment 15 and this final rule is to provide socio-economic benefits to snapper-grouper fishermen and communities that utilize the snapper-grouper resource, while maintaining fishing mortality at sustainable levels according to the best scientific information available.
Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; Fisheries Off West Coast States; 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.