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Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting

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


Notice of public meeting.


The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council will convene a public meeting of the Shrimp Advisory Panel (AP).


The Shrimp AP meeting is scheduled to begin at 8:30 a.m. on Friday, January 9, 2004.


The meeting will be held at the New Orleans Airport Hilton, 901 Airline Highway, Kenner, LA; telephone: (504) 469-5000.

Council address: Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council, 3018 U.S. Highway 301 North, Suite 1000, Tampa, FL 33619.

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Dr. Richard Leard, Senior Fishery Biologist, Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council; telephone: (813) 228-2815.

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The Shrimp AP will receive reports from NMFS on the status and health of the shrimp stocks as well as a report on the biological and economic aspects of the 2003 Cooperative Shrimp Closure with the state of Texas. The Shrimp AP may make recommendations for a Start Printed Page 71095cooperative closure with Texas for 2004. The Shrimp AP will also review Draft Amendment 13 to the Shrimp Fishery Management Plan (FMP) addressing maximum sustainable yield (MSY), optimum yield (OY), minimum stock size threshold (MSST), and maximum fishing mortality threshold (MFMT) for shrimp stocks, as well as improved effort alternatives and standardized bycatch reporting methodologies. The Shrimp AP will also review an Options Paper for Amendment 14 that includes alternatives for vessel monitoring systems (VMS), additional bycatch reduction measures, and measures to reduce effort in order to achieve OY.

The Shrimp AP consists principally of commercial shrimp fishermen, dealers, and association representatives.

Although other non-emergency issues not on the agenda may come before the AP for discussion, in accordance with the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, those issues may not be the subject of formal action during these meetings. Actions of the AP will be restricted to those issues specifically identified in the agenda and any issues arising after publication of this notice that require emergency action under section 305(c) of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, provided the public has been notified of the Council's intent to take action to address the emergency.

Copies of the agenda can be obtained by calling 813-228-2815.

Special Accommodations

This meeting is physically accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids should be directed to Trish Kennedy at the Council (see ADDRESSES) by December 29, 2003.

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Dated: December 16, 2003.

Richard W. Surdi,

Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.

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[FR Doc. E3-00601 Filed 12-19-03; 8:45 am]