[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 41 (Friday, March 1, 2013)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Page 13812]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-04818]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 648

[Docket No. 121009528-2729-02]
RIN 0648-XC499


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.

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SUMMARY: NMFS announces that the State of North Carolina is 
transferring a portion of its 2013 commercial summer flounder quota to 
the Commonwealth of Virginia and to the State of Rhode Island. NMFS is 
adjusting the quotas and announcing the revised commercial quota for 
each state involved.

DATES: Effective February 28, 2013, through December 31, 2013.

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

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Regulations governing the summer flounder 
fishery are in 50 CFR part 648, and 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 1,410,230 lb (639,670 kg) of 
its 2013 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, from 
January 1, 2013, to January 31, 2013, thereby requiring a quota 
transfer to account for an increase in Virginia's landings that would 
have otherwise accrued against the North Carolina quota. North Carolina 
has also agreed to transfer 36,784 lb (16,685 kg) of its 2013 
commercial quota to Rhode Island. This transfer was prompted by summer 
flounder landings of three North Carolina vessels that were granted 
safe harbor in Rhode Island on January 31, 2013, and February 8, 2013, 
thereby requiring a quota transfer to account for an increase in Rhode 
Island'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 2013 are: North Carolina, 
1,692,732 lb (767,810 kg); Virginia, 3,848,822 lb (1,745,796 kg); and 
Rhode Island, 1,830,884 lb (830,475 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: February 25, 2013.
Kara Meckley,
Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National 
Marine Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2013-04818 Filed 2-28-13; 8:45 am]
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