National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.
Temporary rule; closure.
NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for pollock in Statistical Area 620 in the Gulf of Alaska (GOA). This action is necessary to prevent exceeding the D season allowance of the 2020 total allowable catch of pollock for Statistical Area 620 in the GOA.
Effective October 26, 2020. This inseason became applicable at 1200 hours, Alaska local time (A.l.t.), October 20, 2020, through 1200 hours, A.l.t., October 27, 2020.
Start Further Info
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
Krista Milani, 907-581-2062.
End Further Info
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.
The D season allowance of the 2020 total allowable catch (TAC) of pollock in Statistical Area 620 of the GOA is 6,739 metric tons (mt) as established by the final 2020 and 2021 harvest specifications for groundfish in the GOA (85 FR 13802, March 10, 2020).
In accordance with § 679.20(d)(1)(i), the Regional Administrator has determined that the D season allowance of the 2020 TAC of pollock in Statistical Area 620 of the GOA will soon be reached. Therefore, the Regional Administrator is establishing a directed fishing allowance of 6,639 mt and is setting aside the remaining 100 mt as bycatch to support other anticipated groundfish fisheries. In accordance with § 679.20(d)(1)(iii), the Regional Administrator finds that this directed fishing allowance has been reached. Consequently, NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for pollock in Statistical Area 620 of the GOA.
While this closure is effective the maximum retainable amounts at § 679.20(e) and (f) apply at any time during a trip.
NMFS issues this action pursuant to section 305(d) of the Magnuson-Stevens Act. This action is required by 50 CFR part 679, which was issued pursuant to section 304(b), and is exempt from review under Executive Order 12866.
Pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B), there is good cause to waive prior notice and an opportunity for public comment on this action, as notice and comment would be 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 directed fishing for pollock in Statistical Area 620 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 October 19, 2020.
End Supplemental Information
Dated: October 26, 2020.
Jennifer M. Wallace,
Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2020-24010 Filed 10-26-20; 4:15 pm]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P