[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 207 (Thursday, October 25, 2012)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Page 65136]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-26238]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 648

[Docket No. 111220786-1781-01]
RIN 0648-XC303


Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Black Sea Bass 
Fishery; Recreational Quota Harvested

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

ACTION: Temporary rule; closure.

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SUMMARY: NMFS announces that the 2012 black sea bass recreational 
harvest limit has been exceeded. No one may fish for or possess black 
sea bass in Federal waters for the remainder of calendar year 2012, 
unless issued a Federal moratorium permit and fishing commercially. 
Regulations governing the black sea bass fishery require publication of 
this notification to advise that the recreational quota has been 
harvested and to advise vessel permit holders that no Federal 
recreational quota is available for fishing black sea bass.

DATES: Effective at 0001 hr local time, November 1, 2012, through 2400 
hr local time December 31, 2012.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Moira Kelly, Fishery Policy Analyst, 
(978) 281-9218, or Moira.Kelly@noaa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Regulations governing the black sea bass 
fishery are found at 50 CFR part 648. The regulations require annual 
specification of a recreational harvest limit (RHL) for the Atlantic 
coast from Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, through Maine. The process to 
set the annual RHL is described in Sec.  648.142.
    The initial total RHL for black sea bass for the 2012 fishing year 
is 1.86 million lb (844 mt) (76 FR 82189, December 30, 2011). The 2012 
RHL was reduced to 1.32 million lb (599 mt) after deduction of research 
set-aside and discards.
    The Administrator, Northeast Region, NMFS (Regional Administrator), 
monitors the recreational harvest limit and determines when the 
recreational harvest limit has been met or exceeded. NMFS is required 
to publish notification in the Federal Register advising and notifying 
recreational vessels that, effective upon a specific date, the 
recreational harvest limit has been harvested. The Regional 
Administrator has determined based upon data from the Marine 
Recreational Fishing Statistical Survey and the Marine Recreational 
Information Program that the 2012 recreational black sea bass quota has 
been exceeded.
    Effective 0001 hours, November 1, 2012, no one may fish for or 
possess black sea bass in Federal waters for the remainder of the 2012 
calendar year, unless issued a commercial moratorium permit and fishing 
commercially. This closure also applies to vessels issued a Federal 
party/charter permit fishing in state waters.

Classification

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

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

    Dated: October 19, 2012.
Emily H. Menashes,
Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2012-26238 Filed 10-24-12; 8:45 am]
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