[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 48 (Monday, March 12, 2012)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Page 14481]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-5921]


=======================================================================
-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 648

[Docket No. 111220786-1781-01]
RIN 0648-XB026


Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Summer Flounder 
Fishery; Quota Transfer

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

ACTION: Temporary rule; quota transfer.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: NMFS announces that the State of North Carolina is 
transferring a portion of its 2012 commercial summer flounder quota to 
the Commonwealth of Virginia. By this action, NMFS adjusts the quotas 
and announces the revised commercial quota for each state involved.

DATES: Effective March 7, 2012, through December 31, 2012.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Carly Bari, Fishery Management 
Specialist, 978-281-9224.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Regulations governing the summer flounder 
fishery are found at 50 CFR part 648. The regulations require annual 
specification of a commercial quota that is apportioned among the 
coastal states from North Carolina through Maine. The process to set 
the annual commercial quota and the percent allocated to each state are 
described in Sec.  648.100.
    The final rule implementing Amendment 5 to the Summer Flounder, 
Scup, and Black Sea Bass Fishery Management Plan, which was published 
on December 17, 1993 (58 FR 65936), provided a mechanism for summer 
flounder quota to be transferred from one state to another. Two or more 
states, under mutual agreement and with the concurrence of the 
Administrator, Northeast Region, NMFS (Regional Administrator), can 
transfer or combine summer flounder commercial quota under Sec.  
648.102(c)(2). The Regional Administrator is required to consider the 
criteria in Sec.  648.102(c)(2)(i) to evaluate requests for quota 
transfers or combinations.
    North Carolina has agreed to transfer 879,118 lb (398,761 kg) of 
its 2012 commercial quota to Virginia. This transfer was prompted by 
summer flounder landings of a number of North Carolina vessels that 
were granted safe harbor in Virginia due to hazardous shoaling in 
Oregon Inlet, North Carolina, between January 1, 2012, and January 31, 
2012, thereby requiring a quota transfer to account for an increase in 
Virginia's landings that would have otherwise accrued against the North 
Carolina quota. The Regional Administrator has determined that the 
criteria set forth in Sec.  648.102(c)(2)(i) have been met. The revised 
summer flounder quotas for calendar year 2012 are: North Carolina, 
2,614,661 lb (1,185,990 kg); and Virginia, 3,592,683 lb (1,629,614 kg).

Classification

    This action is taken under 50 CFR part 648 and is exempt from 
review under Executive Order 12866.

    Authority:  16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    Dated: March 7, 2012.
Carrie Selberg,
Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2012-5921 Filed 3-7-12; 4:15 pm]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P