National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.
Temporary rule; closure.
NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for Pacific cod by American Fisheries Act (AFA) trawl catcher processors in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands management area (BSAI). This action is necessary as the 2010 Pacific cod directed fishing allowance for AFA trawl catcher processors in the BSAI has been reached.
Effective 1200 hrs, Alaska local time (A.l.t.), June 10, 2010, through 2400 hrs, A.l.t., December 31, 2010.Start Further Info
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
Obren Davis, 907-586-7228.End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information
NMFS manages the groundfish fishery in the BSAI exclusive economic zone according to the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area (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.
The 2010 Pacific cod total allowable catch (TAC) allocated to AFA trawl catcher processors in the BSAI is 3,467 metric tons (mt) as established by the final 2010 and 2011 harvest specifications for groundfish in the BSAI (75 FR 11778, March 12, 2010).
In accordance with § 679.20(d)(1)(i), the Administrator, Alaska Region, NMFS (Regional Administrator), has Start Printed Page 31718determined that the 2010 Pacific cod TAC allocated to AFA trawl catcher processors in the BSAI will be taken as incidental catch by AFA trawl catcher processors in directed fisheries for other groundfish species. Therefore, the Regional Administrator is establishing a directed fishing allowance of 0 mt and in accordance with § 679.20(d)(1)(iii), finds that this directed fishing allowance has been reached. Consequently, NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for Pacific cod by AFA trawl catcher processors in the BSAI.
After the effective date of this closure the maximum retainable amounts at § 679.20(e) and (f) apply at any time during a trip.
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 closure of Pacific cod by AFA trawl catcher processors in the BSAI. NMFS was unable to publish a notice providing time for public comment because the most recent, relevant data only became available as of May 27, 2010.
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 § 679.20 and is exempt from review under Executive Order 12866.Start Signature
Dated: May 28, 2010.
Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2010-13493 Filed 6-3-10; 8:45 am]
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