National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.
Monkfish Fishery Management Plan Amendment 5; Public Hearings; Request for Comments.
The New England Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold six public hearings to solicit comments on proposals to be included in the Draft Amendment 5 to the Start Printed Page 2112Monkfish Fishery Management Plan (FMP).
Written comments must be received on or before 5 p.m. EST, March 5, 2010. The public hearings will be held from February 8, 2010 to March 5, 2010. For specific dates and times, see SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.
The Council will take comments at public meetings in Fairhaven, MA; Gloucester, MA; Cambridge, MD; Riverhead, NY; Lakewood, NJ and Rockport, ME. For specific locations, see SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION. Written comments should be sent to Patricia Kurkul, Regional Administrator, National Marine Fisheries Service, 55 Great Republic Drive, Gloucester, MA 01930. Comments may also be sent via fax to (978) 281-9135 or submitted via e-mail to email@example.com with (Monkfish Amendment 5 Public Hearing Comments) in the subject line. Requests for copies of the public hearing document and other information should be directed to Paul J. Howard, Executive Director, New England Fishery Management Council, 50 Water Street, Mill 2, Newburyport, MA 01950; telephone: (978) 465-0492.Start Further Info
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
Paul J. Howard, Executive Director, New England Fishery Management Council; telephone: (978) 465-0492.End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information
The New England Fishery Management Council's Monkfish Committee is holding public hearings for Amendment 5 to the Monkfish Fishery Management Plan (FMP). The primary purpose of this amendment is to address the new requirements of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Reauthorization Act that the Council adopt Annual Catch Limits (ACLs) and Accountability Measures (AMs) and manage the fishery at long-term sustainable levels. According to the Act, these measures must be adopted by 2011. Amendment 5 will also include revised biological and management reference points to bring the FMP into compliance with revised National Standard 1 Guidelines. Further, Amendment 5 will specify total allowable catch targets and associated days-at-sea (DAS) and trip limits for the directed fishery to supplant the current specifications that it adopted for the 2007-09 fishing years along with an extension provision which will apply for the 2010 fishing year. Amendment 5 contains proposals to make modifications to the FMP to improve the Research Set-Aside (RSA) Program, to minimize bycatch resulting from trip limit overages, to accommodate those vessels fishing in groundfish sectors who would no longer be required to use their allocated groundfish DAS, to require all limited access monkfish vessels to use a VMS when on a monkfish DAS, and to allow the landing of monkfish heads.
The public hearing document, as well as the draft Amendment 5 document incorporating an Environmental Assessment, is available on the Monkfish page of the Council(s website (www.nefmc.org) or from the Council office.
After the close of the public comment period, the Monkfish Oversight Committee and Industry Advisory Panel will review the comments and develop recommendations to the New England and Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Councils on the measures to be submitted as final action for Amendment 5. The Councils will make their decisions in April, 2010 for submission to the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS). If approved by NMFS, Amendment 5 will take effect at the start of the 2011 fishing year.
The dates, times, locations and telephone numbers of the hearings are as follows:
Monday, February 8, 2010 at 1 p.m. - Hampton Inn, One Hampton Way, Fairhaven, MA 02719; telephone: (508) 990-8500;
Tuesday, February 9, 2010 at 1 p.m. - Massachusetts Department of Marine Fisheries Annisquam River Station, 30 Emerson Avenue, Gloucester, MA 01930; telephone: (978) 282-0308;
Thursday, February 11, 2010 at 8 a.m. - Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Hotel, 100 Heron Boulevard at Route 50, Cambridge, MD 21613; telephone: (410) 901-1234;
Wednesday, February 24, 2010 at 1:30 p.m. - Holiday Inn Express East End, 1707 Old Country Road, Riverhead, NY 11901; telephone: (631) 548-1000;
Thursday, February 25, 2010 at 9 a.m. - Hilton Garden Inn, 1885 Route 70, Lakewood, NJ 08701; telephone: (732) 262-5232;
Friday, March 5, 2010 at 9 a.m. - Samoset Resort, 220 Warrenton Street, Rockport, ME 04856; telephone: (207) 594-2511.
These hearings are physically accessible to people with physical disabilities. Requests for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids should be directed to Paul J. Howard (see ADDRESSES) at least 5 days prior to the meeting date.Start Signature
Dated: January 8, 2010.
William D. Chappell,
Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2010-507 Filed 1-13-10; 8:45 am]
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