[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 48 (Tuesday, March 12, 2013)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Page 15643]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-05633]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 679

[Docket No. 120918468-3111-02]
RIN 0648-XC550


Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Pollock in 
Statistical Area 630 in the Gulf of Alaska

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

ACTION: Temporary rule; closure.

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SUMMARY: NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for pollock in 
Statistical Area 630 in the Gulf of Alaska (GOA). This action is 
necessary to prevent exceeding the B season allowance of the 2013 total 
allowable catch of pollock for Statistical Area 630 in the GOA.

DATES: Effective 1200 hours, Alaska local time (A.l.t.), March 10, 
2013, through 1200 hours, A.l.t., August 25, 2013.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Josh Keaton, 907-586-7228.

SUPPLEMENTARY 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 B season allowance of the 2013 total allowable catch (TAC) of 
pollock in Statistical Area 630 of the GOA is 2,618 metric tons (mt) as 
established by the final 2013 and 2014 harvest specifications for 
groundfish of the GOA (78 FR 13162, February 26, 2013). In accordance 
with Sec.  679.20(a)(5)(iv)(B), the Administrator, Alaska Region, NMFS 
(Regional Administrator), hereby increases the B season pollock 
allowance by 39 mt to reflect the total underharvest of the A seasonal 
apportionment in Statistical Area 630. Therefore, the revised B season 
allowance of the pollock TAC in Statistical Area 630 is 2,657 mt (2,618 
mt plus 39 mt).
    In accordance with Sec.  679.20(d)(1)(i), the Regional 
Administrator has determined that the B season allowance of the 2013 
TAC of pollock in Statistical Area 630 of the GOA will soon be reached. 
Therefore, the Regional Administrator is establishing a directed 
fishing allowance of 2,457 mt and is setting aside the remaining 200 mt 
as bycatch to support other anticipated groundfish fisheries. In 
accordance with Sec.  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 630 of the GOA.
    After the effective date of this closure the maximum retainable 
amounts at Sec.  679.20(e) and (f) apply at any time during a trip.

Classification

    This action responds to the best available information recently 
obtained from the fishery. The Acting 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) and 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 directed fishing for pollock in 
Statistical Area 630 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 March 6, 2013.
    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 Sec.  679.20 and is exempt from review 
under Executive Order 12866.

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

    Dated: March 7, 2013.
Kara Meckley,
Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National 
Marine Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2013-05633 Filed 3-7-13; 4:15 pm]
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