National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.
Temporary rule; modification of a closure.
NMFS is opening directed fishing for northern rockfish in the Western Regulatory Area of the Gulf of Alaska (GOA) for 96 hours. This action is necessary to fully use the 2009 total allowable catch (TAC) of northern rockfish in the Western Regulatory Area of the GOA.
Effective 1200 hrs, Alaska local time (A.l.t.), July 17, 2009, through 1200 hrs, A.l.t., July 21, 2009. Comments must be received at the following address no later than 4:30 p.m., A.l.t., July 31, 2009.
Send comments to Sue Salveson, Assistant Regional Administrator, Sustainable Fisheries Division, Alaska Region, NMFS, Attn: Ellen Sebastian. You may submit comments, identified by [RIN], by any one of the following methods:
- Electronic Submissions: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal eRulemaking Portal website at http://www.regulations.gov.
- Mail: P.O. Box 21668, Juneau, AK 99802.
- Fax: (907) 586-7557.
- Hand delivery to the Federal Building: 709 West 9th Street, Room 420A, Juneau, AK.
All comments received are a part of the public record and will generally be posted to http://www.regulations.gov without change. All Personal Identifying Information (for example, name, address, etc.) voluntarily submitted by the commenter may be publicly accessible. Do not submit Confidential Business Information or otherwise sensitive or protected information.
NMFS will accept anonymous comments. Enter “N/A” in the required fields, if you wish to remain anonymous. Attachments to electronic comments will be accepted in Microsoft Word, Excel, WordPerfect, or Adobe portable document file (pdf) file formats only.Start Further Info
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
Steve Whitney, 907-586-7269.End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information
NMFS manages the groundfish fishery in the GOA exclusive economic zone according to the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Gulf of Alaska (FMP) prepared by the North Pacific Fishery Management Council under authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. Regulations governing fishing by U.S. vessels in accordance with the FMP appear at subpart H of 50 CFR part 600 and 50 CFR part 679.
NMFS closed the directed fishery for northern rockfish in the Western Regulatory Area of the GOA on July 9, 2009 (74 FR 33923, July 14, 2009).
NMFS has determined that approximately 392 mt of the 2009 TAC of northern rockfish in the Western Regulatory Area of the GOA remain in the directed fishing allowance. Therefore, in accordance with § 679.25(a)(1)(i), (a)(2)(i)(C), and (a)(2)(iii)(D), and to fully utilize the 2009 TAC of northern rockfish in the Western Regulatory Area of the GOA, NMFS is terminating the previous closure and is reopening directed fishing for northern rockfish in the Western Regulatory Area of the GOA for 96 hours, effective 1200 hrs, A.l.t., July 17, 2009, through 1200 hrs, A.l.t., July 21, 2009.
This action responds to the best available information recently obtained from the fishery. The Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, NOAA (AA), finds good cause to waive the requirement to provide prior notice and opportunity for public comment pursuant to the authority set forth at 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) as such requirement is impracticable and contrary to the public interest. This requirement is impracticable and contrary to the public interest as it would prevent NMFS from responding to the most recent fisheries data in a timely fashion and would delay the reopening and closure of northern rockfish in the Western Regulatory Area of the GOA. NMFS was unable to publish a notice providing time for public comment because the most recent, relevant data only became available as of July 15, 2009.
The AA also finds good cause to waive the 30-day delay in the effective date of this action under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3). This finding is based upon the reasons provided above for waiver of prior notice and opportunity for public comment.
This action is required by § 679.25 and is exempt from review under Executive Order 12866.Start Signature
Dated: July 16, 2009.
Kristen C. Koch,
Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. E9-17279 Filed 7-16-09; 4:15 pm]
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