[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 98 (Wednesday, May 21, 2014)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 29136-29137]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-11743]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 679

[Docket No. 131021878-4158-02]
RIN 0648-XD300


Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Yellowfin 
Sole in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area

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 yellowfin sole in the 
Bering Sea and Aleutian Island management area (BSAI) by vessels 
participating in the BSAI trawl limited access fishery. This action is 
necessary to prevent exceeding the 2014 Pacific halibut bycatch 
allowance specified for vessels participating in the BSAI trawl limited 
access yellowfin sole fishery.

DATES: Effective 1200 hrs, Alaska local time (A.l.t.), May 18, 2014, 
through 2400 hrs, A.l.t., December 31, 2014.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Steve Whitney, 907-586-7269.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: NMFS manages the groundfish fishery in the 
BSAI exclusive economic zone according to the Fishery Management Plan 
for Groundfish of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area 
(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.

[[Page 29137]]

    The 2014 Pacific halibut bycatch allowance specified for vessels 
participating in the BSAI trawl limited access yellowfin sole fishery 
is 167 metric tons as established by the final 2014 and 2015 harvest 
specifications for groundfish in the BSAI (79 FR 12108, March 4, 2014).
    In accordance with Sec.  679.21(e)(7)(v), the Regional 
Administrator finds that this bycatch allowance has been reached. 
Consequently, NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for yellowfin sole 
in the BSAI by vessels participating in the BSAI trawl limited access 
yellowfin sole fishery.
    After the effective dates 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) as such a 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 the yellowfin sole directed 
fishery in the BSAI for vessels participating in the BSAI trawl limited 
access fishery. NMFS was unable to publish a notice providing time for 
public comment because the most recent, relevant data only became 
available as of May 15, 2014. 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: May 16, 2014.
Alan D. Risenhoover,
Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries 
Service.
[FR Doc. 2014-11743 Filed 5-16-14; 4:15 pm]
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