[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 78 (Wednesday, April 23, 2014)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 22594-22595]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-09260]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 622

[Docket No. 1206013412-2517-02]
RIN 0648-XD230


Reef Fish Fishery of the Gulf of Mexico; 2014 Recreational 
Accountability Measure for Greater Amberjack in the Gulf of Mexico

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

ACTION: Temporary rule; accountability measure.

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SUMMARY: NMFS implements an accountability measure (AM) for 
recreational greater amberjack in the Gulf of Mexico (Gulf) reef fish 
fishery for the 2014 fishing year through this temporary final rule. 
This rule reduces the Gulf greater amberjack 2014 recreational annual 
catch target (ACT) (equal to the recreational quota) to 862,512 lb 
(391,229 kg) and reduces the 2014 recreational annual catch limit (ACL) 
to 1,031,512 lb (467,886 kg), based on the 2013 recreational ACL 
overage. These actions are necessary to reduce overfishing of the Gulf 
greater amberjack resource.

DATES: This rule is effective April 23, 2014, through December 31, 
2014.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Rich Malinowski, Southeast Regional 
Office, telephone 727-824-5305, email rich.malinowski@noaa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The reef fish fishery of the Gulf, which 
includes greater amberjack, is managed under the Fishery Management 
Plan for the Reef Fish Resources of the Gulf of Mexico (FMP). The FMP 
was prepared by the Council and is implemented through regulations at 
50 CFR part 622 under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery 
Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act). All

[[Page 22595]]

weights specified in this rule are round weight.
    The Gulf greater amberjack recreational ACL is 1,299,000 lb 
(589,216 kg), and the recreational ACT (recreational quota) is 
1,130,000 lb (512,559 kg), as specified in 50 CFR 622.41(a)(2)(iii) and 
50 CFR 622.39(a)(2)(ii), respectively.
    In accordance with regulations at 50 CFR 622.41(a)(2)(ii), if 
landings exceed the recreational ACL, then during the following fishing 
year, both the recreational ACT (recreational quota) and the 
recreational ACL will be reduced by the amount of the prior year's 
recreational ACL overage.
    NMFS determined that the 2013 recreational landings were 1,566,488 
lb (710,547 kg), which exceeded the 2013 recreational ACL of 1,299,000 
lb (589,216 kg) by 267,488 lb (121,331 kg). Therefore, NMFS implements 
a post-season AM for recreational greater amberjack in the Gulf for the 
2014 fishing year through this temporary rule. The reduced 2014 
recreational ACT (recreational quota) for Gulf greater amberjack is 
862,512 lb (391,229 kg) (i.e., 1,130,000-lb (512,559-kg) recreational 
ACT minus the overage of 267,488 lb (121,331 kg)). The reduced 2014 
recreational ACL for Gulf greater amberjack is 1,031,512 lb (467,886 
kg) (i.e., 1,299,000-lb (589,216-kg) recreational ACL minus the overage 
of 267,488 lb (121,331 kg)).
    The 2015 recreational ACT (recreational quota) for greater 
amberjack will return to 1,130,000 lb (512,559 kg), as specified at 50 
CFR 622.39(a)(2)(ii), and the recreational ACL for greater amberjack 
will return to 1,299,000 lb (589,216 kg), as specified in 50 CFR 
622.41(a)(2)(iii), unless AMs are implemented due to a recreational ACL 
overage, or the Council takes subsequent regulatory action to adjust 
the recreational ACT (recreational quota) and recreational ACL.

Classification

    The Regional Administrator, Southeast Region, NMFS, has determined 
this temporary rule is necessary for the conservation and management of 
Gulf greater amberjack and is consistent with the Magnuson-Stevens Act 
and other applicable laws.
    This action is taken under 50 CFR 622.41(a)(2)(ii) and is exempt 
from review under Executive Order 12866.
    These measures are exempt from the procedures of the Regulatory 
Flexibility Act because the temporary rule is issued without 
opportunity for prior notice and comment.
    Pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B), there is good cause to waive the 
requirements to provide prior notice and opportunity for public comment 
on this temporary rule. Such procedures are unnecessary because the AMs 
established by Amendment 35 to the FMP (77 FR 67574, November 13, 2013) 
and located at 50 CFR 622.41(a)(2)(ii) authorize the Assistant 
Administrator, NMFS, to file a notification with the Office of the 
Federal Register to reduce the recreational ACT (recreational quota) 
and recreational ACL the following fishing year when the recreational 
ACL is exceeded. The proposed rule for Amendment 35 (77 FR 42476, July 
19, 2012) was already subject to notice and comment and all that 
remains is to notify the public of the 2014 recreational ACT 
(recreational quota) and recreational ACL for Gulf greater amberjack.
    Allowing prior notice and opportunity for public comment is 
contrary to the public interest because of the need to immediately 
implement this action to protect the greater amberjack resource. Any 
delay in notification of the public of the 2014 recreational ACT 
(recreational quota) and recreational ACL could result in the 
recreational ACT or ACL for greater amberjack being exceeded, which, in 
turn, would trigger an in-season AM in 2014 or post-season AMs in 2015 
for greater amberjack, respectively.
    For the aforementioned reasons, the Assistant Administrator, NMFS, 
also finds good cause to waive the 30-day delay in the effectiveness of 
this action under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3).

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

    Dated: April 18, 2014.
Emily H. Menashes,
Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine 
Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2014-09260 Filed 4-22-14; 8:45 am]
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