[Title 50 CFR ]
[Code of Federal Regulations (annual edition) - October 1, 2017 Edition]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]



[[Page I]]

          

          Title 50

Wildlife and Fisheries


________________________

Parts 228 to 599

                         Revised as of October 1, 2017

          Containing a codification of documents of general 
          applicability and future effect

          As of October 1, 2017
                    Published by the Office of the Federal Register 
                    National Archives and Records Administration as a 
                    Special Edition of the Federal Register

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                            Table of Contents



                                                                    Page
  Explanation.................................................       v

  Title 50:
          Chapter II--National Marine Fisheries Service, 
          National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, 
          Department of Commerce (Continued)                         3
          Chapter III--International Fishing and Related 
          Activities                                               139
          Chapter IV--Joint Regulations (United States Fish 
          and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior and 
          National Marine Fisheries Service, National Oceanic 
          and Atmospheric Administration, Department of 
          Commerce); Endangered Species Committee Regulations      331
          Chapter V--Marine Mammal Commission                      405
  Finding Aids:
      Table of CFR Titles and Chapters........................     431
      Alphabetical List of Agencies Appearing in the CFR......     451
      List of CFR Sections Affected...........................     461

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                     ----------------------------

                     Cite this Code:  CFR
                     To cite the regulations in 
                       this volume use title, 
                       part and section number. 
                       Thus, 50 CFR 228.1 refers 
                       to title 50, part 228, 
                       section 1.

                     ----------------------------

[[Page v]]



                               EXPLANATION

    The Code of Federal Regulations is a codification of the general and 
permanent rules published in the Federal Register by the Executive 
departments and agencies of the Federal Government. The Code is divided 
into 50 titles which represent broad areas subject to Federal 
regulation. Each title is divided into chapters which usually bear the 
name of the issuing agency. Each chapter is further subdivided into 
parts covering specific regulatory areas.
    Each volume of the Code is revised at least once each calendar year 
and issued on a quarterly basis approximately as follows:

Title 1 through Title 16.................................as of January 1
Title 17 through Title 27..................................as of April 1
Title 28 through Title 41...................................as of July 1
Title 42 through Title 50................................as of October 1

    The appropriate revision date is printed on the cover of each 
volume.

LEGAL STATUS

    The contents of the Federal Register are required to be judicially 
noticed (44 U.S.C. 1507). The Code of Federal Regulations is prima facie 
evidence of the text of the original documents (44 U.S.C. 1510).

HOW TO USE THE CODE OF FEDERAL REGULATIONS

    The Code of Federal Regulations is kept up to date by the individual 
issues of the Federal Register. These two publications must be used 
together to determine the latest version of any given rule.
    To determine whether a Code volume has been amended since its 
revision date (in this case, October 1, 2017), consult the ``List of CFR 
Sections Affected (LSA),'' which is issued monthly, and the ``Cumulative 
List of Parts Affected,'' which appears in the Reader Aids section of 
the daily Federal Register. These two lists will identify the Federal 
Register page number of the latest amendment of any given rule.

EFFECTIVE AND EXPIRATION DATES

    Each volume of the Code contains amendments published in the Federal 
Register since the last revision of that volume of the Code. Source 
citations for the regulations are referred to by volume number and page 
number of the Federal Register and date of publication. Publication 
dates and effective dates are usually not the same and care must be 
exercised by the user in determining the actual effective date. In 
instances where the effective date is beyond the cut-off date for the 
Code a note has been inserted to reflect the future effective date. In 
those instances where a regulation published in the Federal Register 
states a date certain for expiration, an appropriate note will be 
inserted following the text.

OMB CONTROL NUMBERS

    The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1980 (Pub. L. 96-511) requires 
Federal agencies to display an OMB control number with their information 
collection request.

[[Page vi]]

Many agencies have begun publishing numerous OMB control numbers as 
amendments to existing regulations in the CFR. These OMB numbers are 
placed as close as possible to the applicable recordkeeping or reporting 
requirements.

PAST PROVISIONS OF THE CODE

    Provisions of the Code that are no longer in force and effect as of 
the revision date stated on the cover of each volume are not carried. 
Code users may find the text of provisions in effect on any given date 
in the past by using the appropriate List of CFR Sections Affected 
(LSA). For the convenience of the reader, a ``List of CFR Sections 
Affected'' is published at the end of each CFR volume. For changes to 
the Code prior to the LSA listings at the end of the volume, consult 
previous annual editions of the LSA. For changes to the Code prior to 
2001, consult the List of CFR Sections Affected compilations, published 
for 1949-1963, 1964-1972, 1973-1985, and 1986-2000.

``[RESERVED]'' TERMINOLOGY

    The term ``[Reserved]'' is used as a place holder within the Code of 
Federal Regulations. An agency may add regulatory information at a 
``[Reserved]'' location at any time. Occasionally ``[Reserved]'' is used 
editorially to indicate that a portion of the CFR was left vacant and 
not accidentally dropped due to a printing or computer error.

INCORPORATION BY REFERENCE

    What is incorporation by reference? Incorporation by reference was 
established by statute and allows Federal agencies to meet the 
requirement to publish regulations in the Federal Register by referring 
to materials already published elsewhere. For an incorporation to be 
valid, the Director of the Federal Register must approve it. The legal 
effect of incorporation by reference is that the material is treated as 
if it were published in full in the Federal Register (5 U.S.C. 552(a)). 
This material, like any other properly issued regulation, has the force 
of law.
    What is a proper incorporation by reference? The Director of the 
Federal Register will approve an incorporation by reference only when 
the requirements of 1 CFR part 51 are met. Some of the elements on which 
approval is based are:
    (a) The incorporation will substantially reduce the volume of 
material published in the Federal Register.
    (b) The matter incorporated is in fact available to the extent 
necessary to afford fairness and uniformity in the administrative 
process.
    (c) The incorporating document is drafted and submitted for 
publication in accordance with 1 CFR part 51.
    What if the material incorporated by reference cannot be found? If 
you have any problem locating or obtaining a copy of material listed as 
an approved incorporation by reference, please contact the agency that 
issued the regulation containing that incorporation. If, after 
contacting the agency, you find the material is not available, please 
notify the Director of the Federal Register, National Archives and 
Records Administration, 8601 Adelphi Road, College Park, MD 20740-6001, 
or call 202-741-6010.

CFR INDEXES AND TABULAR GUIDES

    A subject index to the Code of Federal Regulations is contained in a 
separate volume, revised annually as of January 1, entitled CFR Index 
and Finding Aids. This volume contains the Parallel Table of Authorities 
and Rules. A list of CFR titles, chapters, subchapters, and parts and an 
alphabetical list of agencies publishing in the CFR are also included in 
this volume.

[[Page vii]]

    An index to the text of ``Title 3--The President'' is carried within 
that volume.
    The Federal Register Index is issued monthly in cumulative form. 
This index is based on a consolidation of the ``Contents'' entries in 
the daily Federal Register.
    A List of CFR Sections Affected (LSA) is published monthly, keyed to 
the revision dates of the 50 CFR titles.

REPUBLICATION OF MATERIAL

    There are no restrictions on the republication of material appearing 
in the Code of Federal Regulations.

INQUIRIES

    For a legal interpretation or explanation of any regulation in this 
volume, contact the issuing agency. The issuing agency's name appears at 
the top of odd-numbered pages.
    For inquiries concerning CFR reference assistance, call 202-741-6000 
or write to the Director, Office of the Federal Register, National 
Archives and Records Administration, 8601 Adelphi Road, College Park, MD 
20740-6001 or e-mail [email protected]

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ELECTRONIC SERVICES

    The full text of the Code of Federal Regulations, the LSA (List of 
CFR Sections Affected), The United States Government Manual, the Federal 
Register, Public Laws, Public Papers of the Presidents of the United 
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information. Connect to NARA's web site at www.archives.gov/federal-
register.
    The e-CFR is a regularly updated, unofficial editorial compilation 
of CFR material and Federal Register amendments, produced by the Office 
of the Federal Register and the Government Publishing Office. It is 
available at www.ecfr.gov.

    Oliver A. Potts,
    Director,
    Office of the Federal Register.
    October 1, 2017.

                                
                                      
                            

  

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                               THIS TITLE

    Title 50--Fish and Wildlife is composed of thirteen volumes. The 
parts in these volumes are arranged in the following order: Parts 1-16; 
part 17 (17.1 to 17.95(a)), part 17 (17.95(b)), part (17.95(c) to (e)), 
part 17 (17.95(f) to end of 17.95), part 17 (17.96 to 17.98), part 17 
(17.99(a) to 17.99(h)), part 17 (17.99(i) to end of part 17), parts 18-
199, parts 200-227, parts 228-599, parts 600-659, and part 660 to end. 
The first nine volumes consist of parts 1-16, part 17 (17.1 to 
17.95(a)), part 17 (17.95(b)), part 17 (17.95(c) to (e)), part 17 
(17.95(f) to end of 17.95), part 17 (17.96 to 17.98), part 17 (17.99(a) 
to 17.99(h), part 17 (17.99(i) to end of part 17), and parts 18-199 and 
contain the current regulations issued under chapter I--United States 
Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior. The tenth volume 
(parts 200-227) contains the current regulations issued under chapter 
II--the National Marine Fisheries Service, National Oceanic and 
Atmospheric Administration. The eleventh volume (parts 228-599) contains 
the remaining current regulations issued under chapter II--National 
Marine Fisheries Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric 
Administration, Department of Commerce; and the current regulations 
issued under chapter III--International Fishing and Related Activities, 
chapter IV--Joint Regulations (United States Fish and Wildlife Service, 
Department of the Interior and National Marine Fisheries Service, 
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of 
Commerce); Endangered Species Committee regulations; and chapter V--
Marine Mammal Commission. The twelfth and thirteenth volumes (parts 600-
659 and part 660 to end) contain the current regulations issued under 
chapter VI--Fishery Conservation and Management, National Oceanic and 
Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce. The contents of 
these volumes represent all current regulations codified under this 
title of the CFR as of October 1, 2017.

    Alphabetical listings of endangered and threatened wildlife and 
plants appear in Secs. 17.11 and 17.12.

    The OMB control numbers for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric 
Administration appear in 15 CFR 902.1.

    For this volume, Ann Worley was Chief Editor. The Code of Federal 
Regulations publication program is under the direction of John Hyrum 
Martinez, assisted by Stephen J. Frattini.

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                    TITLE 50--WILDLIFE AND FISHERIES




                  (This book contains parts 228 to 599)

  --------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                    Part

chapter ii--National Marine Fisheries Service, National 
  Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of 
  Commerce (Continued)......................................         216

chapter iii--International Fishing and Related Activities...         300

chapter iv--Joint Regulations (United States Fish and 
  Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior and National 
  Marine Fisheries Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric 
  Administration, Department of Commerce); Endangered 
  Species Committee Regulations.............................         401

chapter v--Marine Mammal Commission.........................         501

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  CHAPTER II--NATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE, NATIONAL OCEANIC AND 
           ATMOSPHERIC ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE




  --------------------------------------------------------------------

               SUBCHAPTER A--GENERAL PROVISIONS [RESERVED]
       SUBCHAPTER B--NORTH PACIFIC COMMERCIAL FISHERIES [RESERVED]
                      SUBCHAPTER C--MARINE MAMMALS
Part                                                                Page
228             Notice and hearing on section 103(d) 
                    regulations.............................           5
229             Authorization for commercial fisheries under 
                    the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972          11
                          SUBCHAPTER D--WHALING
230             Whaling provisions..........................          61
SUBCHAPTER E--TRANSPORTATION AND LABELING OF FISH OR WILDLIFE [RESERVED]
                     SUBCHAPTER F--AID TO FISHERIES
253             Fisheries assistance programs...............          64
259             Capital construction fund tax regulations...          79
 SUBCHAPTER G--PROCESSED FISHERY PRODUCTS, PROCESSED PRODUCTS THEREOF, 
                AND CERTAIN OTHER PROCESSED FOOD PRODUCTS
260             Inspection and certification................          87
261             United States standards for grades..........         117
                SUBCHAPTER H--FISH AND SEAFOOD PROMOTION
270             Species-specific Seafood Marketing Councils.         119
                       SUBCHAPTERS I-J [RESERVED]
                     SUBCHAPTER K--CONTINENTAL SHELF
296             Fishermen's Contingency Fund................         131

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297-299

[Reserved]

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               SUBCHAPTER A_GENERAL PROVISIONS [RESERVED]





       SUBCHAPTER B_NORTH PACIFIC COMMERCIAL FISHERIES [RESERVED]





                       SUBCHAPTER C_MARINE MAMMALS





PART 228_NOTICE AND HEARING ON SECTION 103(d) REGULATIONS
--Table of Contents



Sec.
228.1  Basis and purpose.
228.2  Definitions.
228.3  Scope of regulations.
228.4  Notice of hearing.
228.5  Notification by interested persons.
228.6  Presiding officer.
228.7  Direct testimony submitted as written documents.
228.8  Mailing address.
228.9  Inspection and copying of documents.
228.10  Ex parte communications.
228.11  Prehearing conference.
228.12  Final agenda of the hearing.
228.13  Determination to cancel the hearing.
228.14  Rebuttal testimony and new issues of fact in final agenda.
228.15  Waiver of right to participate.
228.16  Conduct of the hearing.
228.17  Direct testimony.
228.18  Cross-examination.
228.19  Oral and written arguments.
228.20  Recommended decision, certification of the transcript and 
          submission of comments on the recommended decision.
228.21  Assistant Administrator's decision.

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.

    Source: 65 FR 39560, June 27, 2000, unless otherwise noted.



Sec. 228.1  Basis and purpose.

    (a) Sections 101(a)(2), 101(a)(3)(A), and 101(b) of the Marine 
Mammal Protection Act of 1972 (16 U.S.C. 1371(a)(2), 1371(a)(3)(A), and 
1371(b)) and these regulations authorize the Assistant Administrator of 
the National Marine Fisheries Service, to:
    (1) Impose regulations governing the taking of marine mammals 
incidental to commercial fishing operations;
    (2) Waive the moratorium and to adopt regulations with respect to 
the taking and importing of animals from each species of marine mammals 
under the Assistant Administrator's jurisdiction;
    (3) Prescribe regulations governing the taking of depleted marine 
mammals by any Indian, Aleut or Eskimo, respectively. In prescribing 
regulations to carry out the provisions of said sections, the Act refers 
the Assistant Administrator to section 103 (16 U.S.C. 1373). In 
accordance with section 103(d), regulations must be made on the record 
after opportunity for an agency hearing on such regulations and, in the 
case of a waiver, on the determination by the Assistant Administrator to 
waive the moratorium pursuant to section 101(a)(3)(A) of the Act (16 
U.S.C. 1371(a)(3)(A)).
    (b) The purpose of this part is to establish rules of practice and 
procedure for all hearings conducted pursuant to section 103(d) of the 
Act.



Sec. 228.2  Definitions.

    (a) Party means, for the purposes of this subpart:
    (1) The Assistant Administrator or the Assistant Administrator's 
representative;
    (2) A person who has notified the Assistant Administrator by 
specified dates of his or her intent to participate in the hearing 
pursuant to Secs. 228.5 and 228.14(b).
    (b) Witness means, for the purpose of this part, any person who 
submits written direct testimony on the proposed regulations. A person 
may be both a party and a witness.



Sec. 228.3  Scope of regulations.

    The procedural regulations in this part govern the practice and 
procedure in hearings held under section 103(d) of the Act. These 
hearings will be governed by the provisions of 5 U.S.C. 556 and section 
557 of the Administrative Procedure Act. The regulations shall be 
construed to secure the just, speedy and inexpensive determination of 
all issues raised with respect to any waiver or regulation proposed 
pursuant to section 103(d) of the Act with full protection for the 
rights of all persons affected thereby.

[[Page 6]]



Sec. 228.4  Notice of hearing.

    (a) A notice of hearing on any proposed regulations shall be 
published in the Federal Register, together with the Assistant 
Administrator's proposed determination to waive the moratorium pursuant 
to section 101(a)(3)(A) of the Act (16 U.S.C. 1371(a)(3)(A)), where 
applicable.
    (b) The notice shall state:
    (1) The nature of the hearing;
    (2) The place and date of the hearing. The date shall not be less 
than 60 days after publication of notice of the hearing;
    (3) The legal authority under which the hearing is to be held;
    (4) The proposed regulations and waiver, where applicable, and a 
summary of the statements required by section 103(d) of the Act (16 
U.S.C. 1373(d));
    (5) Issues of fact which may be involved in the hearing;
    (6) If a draft Environmental Impact Statement is required, the date 
of publication of the draft and the place(s) where the draft and 
comments thereon may be viewed and copied;
    (7) Any written advice received from the Marine Mammal Commission;
    (8) The place(s) where records and submitted direct testimony will 
be kept for public inspection;
    (9) The final date for filing with the Assistant Administrator a 
notice of intent to participate in the hearing pursuant to Sec. 228.5;
    (10) The final date for submission of direct testimony on the 
proposed regulations and waiver, if applicable, and the number of copies 
required;
    (11) The docket number assigned to the case which shall be used in 
all subsequent proceedings; and
    (12) The place and date of the pre-hearing conference.



Sec. 228.5  Notification by interested persons.

    Any person desiring to participate as a party shall notify the 
Assistant Administrator, by certified mail, on or before the date 
specified in the notice.



Sec. 228.6  Presiding officer.

    (a) Upon publication of the notice of hearing pursuant to 
Sec. 228.4, the Assistant Administrator shall appoint a presiding 
officer pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 3105. No individual who has any conflict of 
interest, financial or otherwise, shall serve as presiding officer in 
such proceeding.
    (b) The presiding officer, in any proceeding under this subpart, 
shall have power to:
    (1) Change the time and place of the hearing and adjourn the 
hearing;
    (2) Evaluate direct testimony submitted pursuant to these 
regulations, make a preliminary determination of the issues, conduct a 
prehearing conference to determine the issues for the hearing agenda, 
and cause to be published in the Federal Register a final hearing 
agenda;
    (3) Rule upon motions, requests and admissibility of direct 
testimony;
    (4) Administer oaths and affirmations, question witnesses and direct 
witnesses to testify;
    (5) Modify or waive any rule (after notice) when determining that no 
party will be prejudiced;
    (6) Receive written comments and hear oral arguments;
    (7) Render a recommended decision; and
    (8) Do all acts and take all measures, including regulation of media 
coverage, for the maintenance of order at and the efficient conduct of 
the proceeding.
    (c) In case of the absence of the original presiding officer or the 
original presiding officer's inability to act, the powers and duties to 
be performed by the original presiding officer under this subpart in 
connection with a proceeding may, without abatement of the proceeding, 
be assigned to any other presiding officer unless otherwise ordered by 
the Assistant Administrator.
    (d) The presiding officer may upon the presiding officer's own 
motion withdraw as presiding officer in a proceeding if the presiding 
officer deems himself or herself to be disqualified.
    (e) A presiding officer may be requested to withdraw at any time 
prior to the recommended decision. Upon the filing by an interested 
person in good faith of a timely and sufficient affidavit alleging the 
presiding officer's personal bias, malice, conflict of interest or other 
basis which might result in prejudice to a party, the hearing shall

[[Page 7]]

recess. The Assistant Administrator shall immediately determine the 
matter as a part of the record and decision in the proceeding, after 
making such investigation or holding such hearings, or both, as the 
Assistant Administrator may deem appropriate in the circumstances.



Sec. 228.7  Direct testimony submitted as written documents.

    (a) Unless otherwise specified, all direct testimony, including 
accompanying exhibits, must be submitted to the presiding officer in 
writing no later than the dates specified in the notice of the hearing 
(Sec. 228.4), the final hearing agenda (Sec. 228.12), or within 15 days 
after the conclusion of the prehearing conference (Sec. 228.14) as the 
case may be. All direct testimony shall be in affidavit form and 
exhibits constituting part of such testimony, referred to in the 
affidavit and made a part thereof, must be attached to the affidavit. 
Direct testimony submitted with exhibits must state the issue to which 
the exhibit relates; if no such statement is made, the presiding officer 
shall determine the relevance of the exhibit to the issues published in 
the Federal Register.
    (b) The direct testimony submitted shall contain:
    (1) A concise statement of the witness' interest in the proceeding 
and his position regarding the issues presented. If the direct testimony 
is presented by a witness who is not a party, the witness shall state 
the witness' relationship to the party; and
    (2) Facts that are relevant and material.
    (c) The direct testimony may propose issues of fact not defined in 
the notice of the hearing and the reason(s) why such issues should be 
considered at the hearing.
    (d) Ten copies of all direct testimony must be submitted unless the 
notice of the hearing specifies otherwise.
    (e) Upon receipt, direct testimony shall be assigned a number and 
stamped with that number and the docket number.
    (f) Contemporaneous with the publication of the notice of hearing, 
the Assistant Administrator's direct testimony in support of the 
proposed regulations and waiver, where applicable, shall be available 
for public inspection as specified in the notice of hearing. The 
Assistant Administrator may submit additional direct testimony during 
the time periods allowed for submission of such testimony by witnesses.



Sec. 228.8  Mailing address.

    Unless otherwise specified in the notice of hearing, all direct 
testimony shall be addressed to the Presiding Officer, c/o Assistant 
Administrator, National Marine Fisheries Service, 1315 East-West 
Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910. All affidavits and exhibits shall be 
clearly marked with the docket number of the proceedings.



Sec. 228.9  Inspection and copying of documents.

    Any document in a file pertaining to any hearing authorized by this 
subpart or any document forming part of the record of such a hearing may 
be inspected and/or copied in the Office of the Assistant Administrator, 
National Marine Fisheries Service, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver 
Spring, MD 20910-unless the file is in the care and custody of the 
presiding officer, in which case the presiding officer shall notify the 
parties as to where and when the record may be inspected.



Sec. 228.10  Ex parte communications.

    (a) After notice of a hearing is published in the Federal Register, 
all communications, whether oral or written, involving any substantive 
or procedural issue and directed either to the presiding officer or to 
the Assistant Administrator, Deputy Assistant Administrator, or Chief of 
the Marine Mammal Division, National Marine Fisheries Service, without 
reference to these rules of procedure, shall be deemed ex parte 
communications and are not to be considered part of the record for 
decision.
    (b) A record of oral conversations shall be made by the persons who 
are contacted. All communications shall be available for public viewing 
at the place(s) specified in the notice of hearing.
    (c) The presiding office shall not consult any person or party on 
any fact in issue or on the merits of the matter

[[Page 8]]

unless notice and opportunity is given for all parties to participate.



Sec. 228.11  Prehearing conference.

    (a) After an examination of all the direct testimony submitted 
pursuant to Sec. 228.7, the presiding officer shall make a preliminary 
determination of issues of fact which may be addressed at the hearing.
    (b) The presiding officer's preliminary determination shall be made 
available at the place or places provided in the notice of the hearing 
(Sec. 228.4(b)(8)) at least 5 days before the prehearing conference.
    (c) The purpose of the prehearing conference shall be to enable the 
presiding officer to determine, on the basis of the direct testimony 
submitted and prehearing discussions:
    (1) Whether the presiding officer's preliminary determination of 
issues of fact for the hearing has omitted any significant issues;
    (2) What facts are not in dispute;
    (3) Which witnesses may appear at the hearing; and
    (4) The nature of the interest of each party and which parties' 
interests are adverse.
    (d) Only parties may participate in the hearing conference and a 
party may appear in person or be represented by counsel.
    (e) Parties who do not appear at the prehearing conference shall be 
bound by the conference's determinations.



Sec. 228.12  Final agenda of the hearing.

    (a) After the prehearing conference, the presiding officer shall 
prepare a final agenda which shall be published in the Federal Register 
within 10 days after the conclusion of the conference. A copy of the 
final agenda shall be mailed to all parties.
    (b) The final agenda shall list:
    (1) All the issues which the hearing shall address, the order in 
which those issues shall be presented, and the direct testimony 
submitted which bears on the issues; and
    (2) A final date for submission of direct testimony on issues of 
fact not included in the notice of hearing if such issues are presented. 
The final agenda may also specify a final date for submission of direct 
testimony to rebut testimony previously submitted during the time 
specified in the notice of the hearing.
    (c) The presiding officer shall publish with the final agenda a list 
of witnesses who may appear at the hearing, a list of parties, the 
nature of the interest of each party, and which parties' interests are 
adverse on the issues presented.



Sec. 228.13  Determination to cancel the hearing.

    (a) If the presiding officer concludes that no issues of fact are 
presented by the direct testimony submitted, the presiding officer shall 
publish such conclusion and notice in the Federal Register that a 
hearing shall not be held and shall also publish a date for filing 
written comments on the proposed regulations. Written comments may 
include proposed findings and conclusions, arguments or briefs.
    (b) A person need not be a party to submit any written comments.
    (c) Promptly after expiration of the period for receiving written 
comments, the presiding officer shall make a recommended decision based 
on the record, which in this case shall consist of the direct testimony 
and written comments submitted. He shall transfer to the Assistant 
Administrator his recommended decision, the record and a certificate 
stating that the record contains all the written direct testimony and 
comments submitted. The Assistant Administrator shall then make a final 
decision in accordance with these regulations (Sec. 228.21).



Sec. 228.14  Rebuttal testimony and new issues of fact in final agenda.

    (a) Direct testimony to rebut testimony offered during the time 
period specified in the notice of hearing may be submitted pursuant to 
these regulations within fifteen days after the conclusion of the 
prehearing conference unless the presiding officer otherwise specifies 
in the final agenda.
    (b) If the final agenda presents issues not included in the notice 
of the hearing published pursuant to Sec. 228.4:
    (1) Any person interested in participating at the hearing on such 
issues presented shall notify the Assistant Administrator by certified 
mail of an

[[Page 9]]

intent to participate not later than 10 days after publication of the 
final agenda. Such person may present direct testimony or cross-examine 
witnesses only on such issues presented unless that person previously 
notified the Assistant Administrator pursuant to Sec. 228.5; and
    (2) Additional written direct testimony concerning such issues may 
be submitted within the time provided in the final agenda. Such direct 
testimony will comply with the requirements of Sec. 228.7.



Sec. 228.15  Waiver of right to participate.

    Persons who fail to notify the Assistant Administrator pursuant to 
Secs. 228.5 and 228.14 shall be deemed to have waived their right to 
participate as parties in any part of the hearing.



Sec. 228.16  Conduct of the hearing.

    (a) The hearing shall be held at the time and place fixed in the 
notice of the hearing, unless the presiding officer changes the time or 
place. If a change occurs, the presiding officer shall publish the 
change in the Federal Register and shall expeditiously notify all 
parties by telephone or by mail: Provided, that if that change in time 
or place of hearing is made less than 5 days before the date previously 
fixed for the hearing, the presiding officer shall also announce, or 
cause to be announced, the change at the time and place previously fixed 
for the hearing.
    (b) The presiding officer shall, at the commencement of the hearing, 
introduce into the record: the notice of hearing as published in the 
Federal Register; all subsequent documents published in the Federal 
Register; the draft Environmental Impact Statement if it is required and 
the comments thereon and agency responses to the comments; and a list of 
all parties. Direct testimony shall then be received with respect to the 
matters specified in the final agenda in such order as the presiding 
officer shall announce. With respect to direct testimony submitted as 
rebuttal testimony or in response to new issues presented by the 
prehearing conference, the presiding officer shall determine the 
relevancy of such testimony.
    (c) The hearing shall be publicly conducted and reported verbatim by 
an official reporter.
    (d) If a party objects to the admission or rejection of any direct 
testimony or to any other ruling of the presiding officer during the 
hearing, he or she shall state briefly the grounds of such objection, 
whereupon an automatic exception will follow if the objection is 
overruled by the presiding officer. The transcript shall not include 
argument or debate thereon except as ordered by the presiding officer. 
The ruling by the presiding officer on any objection shall be a part of 
the transcript and shall be subject to review at the same time and in 
the same manner as the Assistant Administrator's final decision. Only 
objections made before the presiding officer may subsequently be relied 
upon in the proceedings.
    (e) All motions and requests shall be addressed to, and ruled on by, 
the presiding officer, if made prior to his certification of the 
transcript or by the Assistant Administrator if made thereafter.



Sec. 228.17  Direct testimony.

    (a) Only direct testimony submitted by affidavit as provided in 
these regulations and introduced at the hearing by a witness shall be 
considered part of the record. Such direct testimony shall not be read 
into evidence but shall become a part of the record subject to exclusion 
of irrelevant and immaterial parts thereof;
    (b) The witness introducing direct testimony shall:
    (1) State his or her name, address and occupation;
    (2) State qualifications for introducing the direct testimony. If an 
expert, the witness shall briefly state the scientific or technical 
training which qualifies the witness as an expert;
    (3) Identify the direct testimony previously submitted in accordance 
with these regulations; and
    (4) Submit to appropriate cross and direct examination. Cross-
examination shall be by a party whose interests are adverse on the issue 
presented, to the witness', if the witness is a party, or to the 
interests of the party who presented the witness.

[[Page 10]]

    (c) A party shall be deemed to have waived the right to introduce 
direct testimony if such party fails to present a witness to introduce 
the direct testimony.
    (d) Official notice may be taken of such matters as are judicially 
noticed by the courts of the United States: Provided, that parties shall 
be given adequate notice, by the presiding officer, at the hearing, of 
matters so noticed and shall be given adequate opportunity to show that 
such facts are inaccurate or are erroneously noticed.



Sec. 228.18  Cross-examination.

    (a) The presiding officer may:
    (1) Require the cross-examiner to outline the intended scope of the 
cross-examination;
    (2) Prohibit parties from cross-examining witnesses unless the 
presiding officer has determined that the cross-examiner has an adverse 
interest on the facts at issue to the party-witness or the party 
presenting the witness. For the purposes of this subsection, the 
Assistant Administrator's or his or her representative's interest shall 
be considered adverse to all parties;
    (3) Limit the number of times any party or parties having a common 
interest may cross-examine an ``adverse'' witness on the same matter; 
and
    (4) Exclude cross-examination questions that are immaterial, 
irrelevant or unduly repetitious.
    (b) Any party shall be given an opportunity to appear, either in 
person or through an authorized counsel or representative, to cross-
examine witnesses. Before cross-examining a witness, the party or 
counsel shall state his or her name, address and occupation. If counsel 
cross-examines the witness, counsel shall state for the record the 
authority to act as counsel. Cross-examiners shall be assumed to be 
familiar with the direct testimony.
    (c) Any party or party's counsel who fails to appear at the hearing 
to cross-examine an ``adverse'' witness shall be deemed to have waived 
the right to cross-examine that witness.
    (d) Scientific, technical or commercial publications may only be 
utilized for the limited purposes of impeaching witnesses under cross-
examination unless previously submitted and introduced in accordance 
with these regulations.



Sec. 228.19  Oral and written arguments.

    (a) The presiding officer may, in his or her discretion, provide for 
oral argument at the end of the hearing. Such argument, when permitted, 
may be limited by the presiding officer to the extent necessary for the 
expeditious disposition of the proceeding.
    (b) The presiding officer shall announce at the hearing a reasonable 
period of time within which any interested person may file with the 
presiding officer any written comments on the proposed regulations and 
waiver, including proposed findings and conclusions and written 
arguments or briefs, which are based upon the record and citing where 
practicable the relevant page or pages of the transcript. If a party 
filing a brief desires the presiding officer to reconsider any objection 
made by such party to a ruling of the presiding officer, the party shall 
specifically identify such rulings by reference to the pertinent pages 
of the transcript and shall state their arguments thereon as a part of 
the brief.
    (c) Oral or written arguments shall be limited to issues arising 
from direct testimony on the record.



Sec. 228.20  Recommended decision, certification of the transcript
and submission of comments on the recommended decision.

    (a) Promptly after expiration of the period for receiving written 
briefs, the presiding officer shall make a recommended decision based on 
the record and transmit the decision to the Assistant Administrator. The 
recommended decision shall include:
    (1) A statement containing a description of the history of the 
proceedings;
    (2) Findings on the issues of fact with the reasons therefor; and
    (3) Rulings on issues of law.
    (b) The presiding officer shall also transmit to the Assistant 
Administrator the transcript of the hearing, the original and all copies 
of the direct testimony, and written comments. The presiding officer 
shall attach to the original transcript of the hearing a certificate 
stating that, to the best of his knowledge and belief, the transcript is

[[Page 11]]

a true transcript of the testimony given at the hearing except in such 
particulars as are specified.
    (c) Immediately after receipt of the recommended decision, the 
Assistant Administrator shall give notice thereof in the Federal 
Register, send copies of the recommended decision to all parties, and 
provide opportunity for the submission of comments. The recommended 
decision may be reviewed and/or copied in the office of the Assistant 
Administrator, National Marine Fisheries Service, 1315 East-West 
Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910.
    (d) Within 20 days after the notice of receipt of the recommended 
decision has been published in the Federal Register, any interested 
person may file with the Assistant Administrator any written comments on 
the recommended decision. All comments, including recommendations from 
or consultation with the Marine Mammal Commission, must be submitted 
during the 20-day period to the Assistant Administrator at the 
previously mentioned address.



Sec. 228.21  Assistant Administrator's decision.

    (a) Upon receipt of the recommended decision and transcript and 
after the 20-day period for receiving written comments on the 
recommended decision has passed, the Assistant Administrator shall make 
a final decision on the proposed regulations and waiver, where 
applicable. The Assistant Administrator's decision may affirm, modify, 
or set aside, in whole or in part, the recommended findings, conclusions 
and decision of the presiding officer. The Assistant Administrator may 
also remand the hearing record to the presiding officer for a fuller 
development of the record.
    (b) The Assistant Administrator's decision shall include:
    (1) A statement containing a description of the history of the 
proceeding;
    (2) Findings on the issues of fact with the reasons therefor; and
    (3) Rulings on issues of law.
    (4) The Assistant Administrator's decision shall be published in the 
Federal Register. If the waiver is approved, the final adopted 
regulations shall be promulgated with the decision.



PART 229_AUTHORIZATION FOR COMMERCIAL FISHERIES UNDER THE MARINE MAMMAL
PROTECTION ACT OF 1972--Table of Contents



                      Subpart A_General Provisions

Sec.
229.1  Purpose and scope.
229.2  Definitions.
229.3  Prohibitions.
229.4  Requirements for Category I and II fisheries.
229.5  Requirements for Category III fisheries.
229.6  Reporting requirements.
229.7  Monitoring of incidental mortalities and serious injuries.
229.8  Publication of List of Fisheries.
229.9  Emergency regulations.
229.10  Penalties.
229.11  Confidential fisheries data.
229.12  Consultation with the Secretary of the Interior.

       Subpart B_Takes of Endangered and Threatened Marine Mammals

229.20  Issuance of permits.

   Subpart C_Take Reduction Plan Regulations and Emergency Regulations

229.30  Basis.
229.31  Pacific Offshore Cetacean Take Reduction Plan.
229.32  Atlantic large whale take reduction plan regulations.
229.33  Harbor Porpoise Take Reduction Plan Regulations--New England.
229.34  Harbor Porpoise Take Reduction Plan--Mid-Atlantic.
229.35  Bottlenose Dolphin Take Reduction Plan.
229.36  Atlantic Pelagic Longline Take Reduction Plan (PLTRP).

Figure 1 to Part 229--Drift Gillnet Pinger Configuration and Extender 
          Requirements
229.37  False Killer Whale Take Reduction Plan.

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.; Sec. 229.32(f) also issued under 
16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.

    Source: 60 FR 45100, Aug. 30, 1995, unless otherwise noted.



                      Subpart A_General Provisions



Sec. 229.1  Purpose and scope.

    (a) The regulations in this part implement sections 101(a)(5)(E) and 
118 of the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, as amended (16 U.S.C. 
1371(a)(5)(E)

[[Page 12]]

and 1387) that provide for exceptions for the taking of marine mammals 
incidental to certain commercial fishing operations from the Act's 
general moratorium on the taking of marine mammals.
    (b) Section 118 of the Act, rather than sections 103 and 104, 
governs the incidental taking of marine mammals in the course of 
commercial fishing operations by persons using vessels of the United 
States, other than vessels fishing for yellowfin tuna in the eastern 
tropical Pacific Ocean purse seine fishery, and vessels that have valid 
fishing permits issued in accordance with section 204(b) of the Magnuson 
Fishery Conservation and Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1824(b)).
    (c) The regulations of Subpart B also govern the incidental taking 
by commercial fishers of marine mammals from species or stocks 
designated under the Act as depleted on the basis of their listing as 
threatened species or endangered species under the Endangered Species 
Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.).
    (d) The regulations of this part do not apply to the incidental 
taking of California sea otters or to Northwest treaty Indian tribal 
members exercising treaty fishing rights.
    (e) Authorizations under subpart A of this part are exemptions only 
from the taking prohibitions under the Act and not those under the 
Endangered Species Act of 1973. To be exempt from the taking 
prohibitions under the Endangered Species Act, specific authorization 
under subpart B of this part is required.
    (f) Authorizations under this part do not apply to the intentional 
lethal taking of marine mammals in the course of commercial fishing 
operations except as provided for under Secs. 229.4(k) and 229.5(f).
    (g) The purposes of the regulations in this part are to:
    (1) Reduce the incidental mortality or serious injury of marine 
mammals occurring in the course of commercial fishing operations below 
the potential biological removal level for a particular stock, and
    (2) Reduce the incidental mortality or serious injury of marine 
mammals occurring in the course of commercial fishing operations to 
insignificant levels approaching a zero mortality and serious injury 
rate by the statutory deadline of April 30, 2001.

[60 FR 45100, Aug. 30, 1995, as amended at 64 FR 9086, Feb. 24, 1999]



Sec. 229.2  Definitions.

    In addition to the definitions contained in the Act and Sec. 216.3 
of this chapter, and unless otherwise defined in this chapter, the terms 
in this chapter have the following meaning:
    Act or MMPA means the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, as 
amended (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.).
    American lobster or lobster means Homarus americanus.
    Anchored gillnet means any gillnet gear, including an anchored float 
gillnet, sink gillnet or stab net, that is set anywhere in the water 
column and which is anchored, secured, or weighted to the bottom of the 
sea. Also called a set gillnet.
    Assistant Administrator means the Assistant Administrator for 
Fisheries of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
    Authorization Certificate means a document issued by the Assistant 
Administrator, or designee, under the authority of section 118 of the 
Act that authorizes the incidental, but not intentional, taking of 
marine mammals in Category I or II fisheries.
    Bitter end means the end of a line that detaches from a weak link.
    Bottom portion of the line means, for buoy lines, the portion of the 
line in the water column that is closest to the fishing gear.
    Breaking strength means the highest tensile force which an object 
can withstand before breaking.
    Bridle means the lines connecting a gillnet to an anchor or buoy 
line.
    Buoy line means a line connecting fishing gear in the water to a 
buoy at the surface of the water.
    Category I fishery means a commercial fishery determined by the 
Assistant Administrator to have frequent incidental mortality and 
serious injury of marine mammals. A commercial fishery that frequently 
causes mortality or serious injury of marine mammals is one that is by 
itself responsible for the annual removal of 50 percent or

[[Page 13]]

more of any stock's potential biological removal level.
    Category II fishery means a commercial fishery determined by the 
Assistant Administrator to have occasional incidental mortality and 
serious injury of marine mammals. A commercial fishery that occasionally 
causes mortality or serious injury of marine mammals is one that, 
collectively with other fisheries, is responsible for the annual removal 
of more than 10 percent of any marine mammal stock's potential 
biological removal level and that is by itself responsible for the 
annual removal of between 1 and 50 percent, exclusive, of any stock's 
potential biological removal level. In the absence of reliable 
information indicating the frequency of incidental mortality and serious 
injury of marine mammals by a commercial fishery, the Assistant 
Administrator will determine whether the incidental serious injury or 
mortality is ``occasional'' by evaluating other factors such as fishing 
techniques, gear used, methods used to deter marine mammals, target 
species, seasons and areas fished, qualitative data from logbooks or 
fisher reports, stranding data, and the species and distribution of 
marine mammals in the area, or at the discretion of the Assistant 
Administrator. Eligible commercial fisheries not specifically identified 
in the list of fisheries are deemed to be Category II fisheries until 
the next list of fisheries is published.
    Category III fishery means a commercial fishery determined by the 
Assistant Administrator to have a remote likelihood of, or no known 
incidental mortality and serious injury of marine mammals. A commercial 
fishery that has a remote likelihood of causing incidental mortality and 
serious injury of marine mammals is one that collectively with other 
fisheries is responsible for the annual removal of:
    (1) Ten percent or less of any marine mammal stock's potential 
biological removal level, or
    (2) More than 10 percent of any marine mammal stock's potential 
biological removal level, yet that fishery by itself is responsible for 
the annual removal of 1 percent or less of that stock's potential 
biological removal level. In the absence of reliable information 
indicating the frequency of incidental mortality and serious injury of 
marine mammals by a commercial fishery, the Assistant Administrator will 
determine whether the incidental serious injury or mortality is 
``remote'' by evaluating other factors such as fishing techniques, gear 
used, methods used to deter marine mammals, target species, seasons and 
areas fished, qualitative data from logbooks or fisher reports, 
stranding data, and the species and distribution of marine mammals in 
the area or at the discretion of the Assistant Administrator.
    Commercial fishing operation means the catching, taking, or 
harvesting of fish from the marine environment (or other areas where 
marine mammals occur) that results in the sale or barter of all or part 
of the fish harvested. The term includes licensed commercial passenger 
fishing vessel (as defined in Sec. 216.3 of this chapter) activities and 
aquaculture activities.
    Depleted species means any species or population that has been 
designated as depleted under the Act and is listed in Sec. 216.15 of 
this chapter or part 18, subpart E of this title, or any endangered or 
threatened species of marine mammal.
    Driftnet, drift gillnet, or drift entanglement gear means a gillnet 
or gillnets that is/are unattached to the ocean bottom and not anchored, 
secured or weighted to the bottom, regardless of whether attached to a 
vessel.
    Fisher or fisherman means the vessel owner or operator, or the owner 
or operator of gear in a nonvessel fishery.
    Fishery has the same meaning as in section 3 of the Magnuson Fishery 
Conservation and Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1802).
    Fishing or to fish means any commercial fishing operation activity 
that involves:
    (1) The catching, taking, or harvesting of fish;
    (2) The attempted catching, taking, or harvesting of fish;
    (3) Any other activity that can reasonably be expected to result in 
the catching, taking, or harvesting of fish; or
    (4) Any operations at sea in support of, or in preparation for, any 
activity

[[Page 14]]

described in paragraphs (1), (2), or (3) of this definition.
    Fishing trip means any time spent away from port actively engaged in 
commercial fishing operations. The end of a fishing trip will be the 
time of a fishing vessel's return to port or the return of a fisher from 
tending gear in a nonvessel fishery.
    Fishing vessel or vessel means any vessel, boat, ship, or other 
craft that is used for, equipped to be used for, or of a type normally 
used for, fishing.
    Float-line means the rope at the top of a gillnet from which the 
mesh portion of the net is hung.
    Gillnet means fishing gear consisting of a wall of webbing (meshes) 
or nets, designed or configured so that the webbing (meshes) or nets are 
placed in the water column, usually held approximately vertically, and 
are designed to capture fish by entanglement, gilling, or wedging. The 
term ``gillnet'' includes gillnets of all types, including but not 
limited to sink gillnets, other anchored gillnets (e.g., anchored float 
gillnets, stab, and set nets), and drift gillnets. Gillnets may or may 
not be attached to a vessel.
    Groundline, with reference to trap/pot gear, means a line connecting 
traps in a trap trawl, and, with reference to gillnet gear, means a line 
connecting a gillnet or gillnet bridle to an anchor.
    Hard lay lines mean lines that are at least as stiff as \5/16\ inch 
(0.8 cm) diameter line composed of polyester wrapped around a blend of 
polypropylene and polyethylene and 42 visible twists of strands per foot 
of line.
    Incidental means, with respect to an act, a non-intentional or 
accidental act that results from, but is not the purpose of, carrying 
out an otherwise lawful action.
    Injury means a wound or other physical harm. Signs of injury to a 
marine mammal include, but are not limited to, visible blood flow, loss 
of or damage to an appendage or jaw, inability to use one or more 
appendages, asymmetry in the shape of the body or body position, 
noticeable swelling or hemorrhage, laceration, puncture or rupture of 
eyeball, listless appearance or inability to defend itself, inability to 
swim or dive upon release from fishing gear, or signs of equilibrium 
imbalance. Any animal that ingests fishing gear, or any animal that is 
released with fishing gear entangling, trailing or perforating any part 
of the body will be considered injured regardless of the absence of any 
wound or other evidence of an injury.
    Insignificance threshold means the upper limit of annual incidental 
mortality and serious injury of marine mammal stocks by commercial 
fisheries that can be considered insignificant levels approaching a zero 
mortality and serious injury rate. An insignificance threshold is 
estimated as 10 percent of the Potential Biological Removal level for a 
stock of marine mammals. If certain parameters (e.g., maximum net 
productivity rate or the recovery factor in the calculation of the 
stock's potential biological removal level) can be estimated or 
otherwise modified from default values, the Assistant Administrator may 
use a modification of the number calculated from the simple formula for 
the insignificance threshold. The Assistant Administrator may also use a 
modification of the simple formula when information is insufficient to 
estimate the level of mortality and serious injury that would have an 
insignificant effect on the affected population stock and provide a 
rationale for using the modification.
    Interaction means coming in contact with fishing gear or catch. An 
interaction may be characterized by a marine mammal entangled, hooked, 
or otherwise trapped in fishing gear, regardless of whether injury or 
mortality occurs, or situations where marine mammals are preying on 
catch. Catch means fish or shellfish that has been hooked, entangled, 
snagged, trapped or otherwise captured by commercial fishing gear.
    Large mesh gillnet means a gillnet constructed with a mesh size of 7 
inches (17.78 cm) to 18 inches (45.72 cm).
    Lead-line means the rope, weighted or otherwise, to which the bottom 
edge of a gillnet is attached.
    List of Fisheries means the most recent final list of commercial 
fisheries published in the Federal Register by the Assistant 
Administrator, categorized according to the likelihood of incidental 
mortality and serious injury

[[Page 15]]

of marine mammals during commercial fishing operations.
    Mesh size means the distance between inside knot to inside knot. 
Mesh size is measured as described in Sec. 648.80(f)(1) of this title.
    Mid-Atlantic coastal waters means waters bounded by the line defined 
by the following points: The southern shoreline of Long Island, New York 
at 7230 W, then due south to 3351 N lat., thence 
west to the North Carolina/South Carolina border.
    Minimum population estimate means an estimate of the number of 
animals in a stock that:
    (1) Is based on the best available scientific information on 
abundance, incorporating the precision and variability associated with 
such information; and
    (2) Provides reasonable assurance that the stock size is equal to or 
greater than the estimate.
    Modified pound net leader means a pound net leader that is affixed 
to or resting on the sea floor and made of a lower portion of mesh and 
an upper portion of only vertical lines such that the mesh size is equal 
to or less than 8 inches (20.3 cm) stretched mesh; at any particular 
point along the leader, the height of the mesh from the seafloor to the 
top of the mesh must be no more than one-third the depth of the water at 
mean lower low water directly above that particular point; the mesh is 
held in place by a bottom chain that forms the lowermost part of the 
pound net leader; the vertical lines extend from the top of the mesh up 
to a top line, which is a line that forms the uppermost part of the 
pound net leader; the vertical lines are equal to or greater than \5/16\ 
inch (0.8 cm) in diameter and strung vertically at a minimum of every 2 
feet (61 cm); and the vertical lines are hard lay lines.
    Nearshore pound net means a pound net with every part of the leader 
(from the most offshore pole at the pound end of the leader to the most 
inshore pole of the leader) in less than 14 feet (4.3 m) of water at any 
tidal condition.
    Negligible impact has the same meaning as in Sec. 216.103 of this 
chapter.
    Net productivity rate means the annual per capita rate of increase 
in a stock resulting from additions due to reproduction, less losses due 
to mortality.
    Night means any time between one half hour before sunset and one 
half hour after sunrise.
    NMFS means the National Marine Fisheries Service.
    Nonvessel fishery means a commercial fishing operation that uses 
fixed or other gear without a vessel, such as gear used in set gillnet, 
trap, beach seine, weir, ranch, and pen fisheries.
    Observer means an individual authorized by NMFS, or a designated 
contractor, to record information on marine mammal interactions, fishing 
operations, marine mammal life history information, and other scientific 
data, and collect biological specimens during commercial fishing 
activities.
    Offshore pound net means a pound net with any part of the leader 
(from the most offshore pole at the pound end of the leader to the most 
inshore pole of the leader) in water greater than or equal to 14 feet 
(4.3 m) at any tidal condition.
    Operator, with respect to any vessel, means the master, captain, or 
other individual in charge of that vessel.
    Potential biological removal level means the maximum number of 
animals, not including natural mortalities, that may be removed from a 
marine mammal stock while allowing that stock to reach or maintain its 
optimum sustainable population. The potential biological removal level 
is the product of the following factors:
    (1) The minimum population estimate of the stock;
    (2) One-half the maximum theoretical or estimated net productivity 
rate of the stock at a small population size; and
    (3) A recovery factor of between 0.1 and 1.0.
    Pound net means a fixed entrapment gear attached to posts or stakes 
with three continuous sections from offshore to inshore consisting of:
    (1) A pound made of mesh netting that entraps the fish;
    (2) At least one heart made of a mesh netting that is generally in 
the shape of a heart and aids in funneling fish into the pound; and
    (3) A leader, which is a long, straight element consisting of mesh 
or vertical

[[Page 16]]

lines that directs the fish offshore towards the pound.
    Qualified individual means an individual ascertained by NMFS to be 
reasonably able, though training or experience, to identify a right 
whale. Such individuals include, but are not limited to, NMFS staff, 
U.S. Coast Guard and Navy personnel trained in whale identification, 
scientific research survey personnel, whale watch operators and 
naturalists, and mariners trained in whale species identification 
through disentanglement training or some other training program deemed 
adequate by NMFS.
    Regional Fishery Management Council means a regional fishery 
management council established under section 302 of the Magnuson Fishery 
Conservation and Management Act.
    Reliable report means a credible right whale sighting report based 
upon which a DAM zone would be triggered.
    Seine means a net that fishes vertically in the water, is pulled by 
hand or by power, and captures fish by encirclement and confining fish 
within itself or against another net, the shore or bank as a result of 
net design, construction, mesh size, webbing diameter, or method in 
which it is used. In some regions, the net is typically constructed with 
a capture bag in the center of the net which concentrates the fish as 
the net is closed.
    Serious injury means any injury that will likely result in 
mortality.
    Sink gillnet or stab net means any gillnet, anchored or otherwise, 
that is designed to be, or is fished on or near the bottom in the lower 
third of the water column.
    Sinking line means, for both groundlines and buoy lines, line that 
has a specific gravity greater than or equal to 1.030, and, for 
groundlines only, does not float at any point in the water column.
    Small mesh gillnet means a gillnet constructed with a mesh size of 
greater than 5 inches (12.7 cm) to less than 7 inches (17.78 cm).
    Spotter plane means a plane that is deployed for the purpose of 
locating schools of target fish for a fishing vessel that intends to set 
fishing gear on them.
    Stowed means traps/pots and gillnets that are unavailable for 
immediate use and further, all gillnets are stored in accordance with 
the following:
    (1) All nets are covered with canvas or other similar material and 
lashed or otherwise securely fastened to the deck, rail, or drum, and 
all buoys larger than 6 inches (15.24 cm) in diameter, high flyers, and 
anchors are disconnected; and
    (2) Any other method of stowage authorized in writing by the 
Regional Administrator and subsequently published in the Federal 
Register.
    Strategic stock means a marine mammal stock:
    (1) For which the level of direct human-caused mortality exceeds the 
potential biological removal level;
    (2) Which, based on the best available scientific information, is 
declining and is likely to be listed as a threatened species under the 
Endangered Species Act of 1973 within the foreseeable future;
    (3) Which is listed as a threatened species or endangered species 
under the Endangered Species Act of 1973; or
    (4) Which is designated as depleted under the Marine Mammal 
Protection Act of 1972, as amended.
    Sunrise means the time of sunrise as determined for the date and 
location in The Nautical Almanac, prepared by the U.S. Naval 
Observatory.
    Sunset means the time of sunset as determined for the date and 
location in The Nautical Almanac, prepared by the U.S. Naval 
Observatory.
    Take Reduction Plan means a plan developed to reduce the incidental 
mortality and serious injury of marine mammals during commercial fishing 
operations in accordance with section 118 of the Marine Mammal 
Protection Act of 1972, as amended.
    Take Reduction Team means a team established to recommend methods of 
reducing the incidental mortality and serious injury of marine mammals 
due to commercial fishing operations, in accordance with section 118 of 
the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, as amended.
    Tended gear or tend means fishing gear that is physically attached 
to a

[[Page 17]]

vessel in a way that is capable of harvesting fish, or to fish with gear 
attached to the vessel.
    Tie-down refers to twine used between the floatline and the lead 
line as a way to create a pocket or bag of netting to trap fish alive.
    Tie loops means the loops on a gillnet panel used to connect net 
panels to the buoy line, groundline, bridle or each other.
    Trap/Pot means any structure or other device, other than a net or 
longline, that is placed, or designed to be placed, on the ocean bottom 
and is designed for or is capable of, catching species including but not 
limited to lobster, crab (red, Jonah, rock, and blue), hagfish, finfish 
(black sea bass, scup, tautog, cod, haddock, pollock, redfish (ocean 
perch), and white hake), conch/whelk, and shrimp.
    Trap/pot trawl means two or more trap/pots attached to a single 
groundline.
    Up and down line means the line that connects the float-line and 
lead-line at the end of each gillnet net panel.
    U.S. waters means both state and Federal waters to the outer 
boundaries of the U.S. exclusive economic zone along the east coast of 
the United States from the Canadian/U.S. border southward to a line 
extending eastward from the southernmost tip of Florida on the Florida 
shore.
    Vessel owner or operator means the owner or operator of:
    (1) A fishing vessel that engages in a commercial fishing operation; 
or
    (2) Fixed or other commercial fishing gear that is used in a 
nonvessel fishery.
    Vessel of the United States has the same meaning as in section 3 of 
the Magnuson Fishery Conservation and Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1802).
    Weak link means a breakable component of gear that will part when 
subject to a certain tension load.

[60 FR 45100, Aug. 30, 1995, as amended at 62 FR 39183, July 22, 1997; 
63 FR 66487, Dec. 2, 1998; 64 FR 7551, Feb. 16, 1999; 64 FR 9086, Feb. 
24, 1999; 65 FR 80377, Dec. 21, 2000; 67 FR 1141, Jan. 9, 2002; 67 FR 
1313, Jan. 10, 2002; 69 FR 6584, Feb. 11, 2004; 69 FR 43345, July 20, 
2004; 71 FR 24796, Apr. 26, 2006; 72 FR 34642, June 25, 2007; 72 FR 
57180, Oct. 5, 2007; 73 FR 51241, Oct. 2, 2008; 75 FR 7396, Feb. 19, 
2010; 79 FR 36610, June 27, 2014; 80 FR 6929, Feb. 9, 2015]



Sec. 229.3  Prohibitions.

    (a) It is prohibited to take any marine mammal incidental to 
commercial fishing operations except as otherwise provided in part 216 
of this chapter or in this part 229.
    (b) It is prohibited to assault, harm, harass (including sexually 
harass), oppose, impede, intimidate, impair, or in any way influence or 
interfere with an observer, or attempt the same. This prohibition 
includes, but is not limited to, any action that interferes with an 
observer's responsibilities, or that creates an intimidating, hostile, 
or offensive environment.
    (c) It is prohibited to provide false information when registering 
for an Authorization Certificate, applying for renewal of the 
Authorization Certificate, reporting the injury or mortality of any 
marine mammal, or providing information to any observer.
    (d) It is prohibited to tamper with or destroy observer equipment in 
any way.
    (e) It is prohibited to retain any marine mammal incidentally taken 
in commercial fishing operations unless authorized by NMFS personnel, by 
designated contractors or an official observer, or by a scientific 
research permit that is in the possession of the vessel operator.
    (f) It is prohibited to intentionally lethally take any marine 
mammal in the course of commercial fishing operations unless imminently 
necessary in self-defense or to save the life of a person in immediate 
danger, and such taking is reported in accordance with the requirements 
of Sec. 229.6.
    (g) It is prohibited to violate any regulation in this part or any 
provision of section 118 of the Act.
    (h) It is prohibited to own, operate, or be on board a vessel 
subject to the Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Plan except if that 
vessel and all fishing gear comply with all applicable provisions of 
Sec. 229.32.
    (i) It is prohibited to fish for, catch, take, harvest or possess 
fish or wildlife while on board a vessel subject to the Atlantic Large 
Whale Take Reduction Plan, except if that vessel and all fishing gear is 
in compliance with all applicable provisions of Sec. 229.32.

[[Page 18]]

    (j) Any person or vessel claiming the benefit of any exemption or 
exception under Sec. 229.32 has the burden of proving that the exemption 
or exception, is applicable.
    (k)-(l) [Reserved]
    (m) It is prohibited to fish with, set, haul back, possess on board 
a vessel unless stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove 
sink gillnet gear or gillnet gear capable of catching multispecies from 
the areas and for the times specified in Sec. 229.33(a)(1), (a)(3), 
(a)(6), and (a)(8). This prohibition also applies to areas where pingers 
are required, unless the vessel owner or operator complies with the 
pinger provisions specified in Sec. 229.33 (a)(2) through (a)(5) and 
(a)(7). This prohibition does not apply to vessels fishing with a single 
pelagic gillnet (as described and used as set forth in 
Sec. 648.81(f)(2)(ii) of this title).
    (n) It is prohibited to fish with, set, haul back, possess on board 
a vessel unless stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove 
gillnet gear from the areas and for the times as specified in 
Sec. 229.34 (b)(1)(i), (b)(2)(i), (b)(3)(i), or (b)(4)(i).
    (o) It is prohibited to fish with, set, haul back, possess on board 
a vessel unless stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove 
any large mesh or small mesh gillnet gear from the areas and for the 
times specified in Sec. 229.34(b) unless the gear complies with the 
specified gear restrictions set forth in the provisions of paragraphs 
(b)(1)(ii) or (iii), (b)(2)(ii) or (iii), (b)(3)(ii) or (iii), or 
(b)(4)(ii) or (iii) of Sec. 229.34.
    (p) It is prohibited to fish with, set, haul back, possess on board 
a vessel unless stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove 
sink gillnet gear or gillnet gear capable of catching multispecies in 
areas where pingers are required, as specified under Sec. 229.33 (a)(2) 
through (a)(5) and (a)(7), unless the operator on board the vessel 
during fishing operations possesses and retains on board the vessel a 
valid pinger training authorization issued by NMFS as specified under 
Sec. 229.33(c).
    (q)-(r) [Reserved]
    (s) General Bottlenose Dolphin Take Reduction Plan. (1) It is 
prohibited to set, fish with, or possess on board a vessel unless 
stowed, or fail to remove, any gillnet or pound net from the waters 
specified in Sec. 229.35(c) unless the gear complies with the specified 
restrictions set forth in Sec. 229.35(d).
    (2) It is prohibited to set, fish with, or fail to remove a modified 
pound net leader in the Bottlenose Dolphin Pound Net Regulated Area 
unless the fisherman has on board the vessel a valid modified pound net 
leader compliance training certificate issued by NMFS.
    (t) It is prohibited to deploy or fish with pelagic longline gear in 
the Mid-Atlantic Bight unless the vessel:
    (1) Complies with the placard posting requirement specified in 
Sec. 229.36(c); and
    (2) Complies with the gear restrictions specified in Sec. 229.36(e).
    (u) It is prohibited to deploy or fish with pelagic longline gear in 
the Cape Hatteras Special Research Area unless the vessel is in 
compliance with the observer and research requirements specified in 
Sec. 229.36(d).
    (v) It is prohibited to deep-set from a vessel registered for use 
under a Hawaii longline limited access permit unless the vessel complies 
with the gear requirements specified in Sec. 229.37(c)(1) and (c)(2) .
    (w) It is prohibited to fish with longline gear in the Main Hawaiian 
Islands Longline Fishing Prohibited Area, as defined in 
Sec. 229.37(d)(1).
    (x) It is prohibited to deep-set in the Southern Exclusion Zone, as 
defined in Sec. 229.37(d)(2), during the time the area is closed to 
deep-set longline fishing pursuant to Sec. 229.37(e).
    (y) It is prohibited to fish with longline gear from a vessel 
registered for use under a Hawaii longline limited access permit in 
violation of the marine mammal handling and release requirements at 
Sec. 229.37(f).

[60 FR 45100, Aug. 30, 1995, as amended at 62 FR 39184, July 22, 1997; 
63 FR 66487, Dec. 2, 1998; 64 FR 7552, Feb. 16, 1999; 64 FR 9086, Feb. 
24, 1999; 65 FR 80377, Dec. 21, 2000; 67 FR 1313, Jan. 10, 2002; 67 FR 
59477, Sept. 23, 2002; 71 FR 24796, Apr. 26, 2006; 72 FR 57180, Oct. 5, 
2007; 74 FR 23357, May 19, 2009; 75 FR 7396, Feb. 19, 2010; 77 FR 71284, 
Nov. 29, 2012; 79 FR 36610, June 27, 2014; 80 FR 6929, Feb. 9, 2015]



Sec. 229.4  Requirements for Category I and II fisheries.

    (a) General. (1) For a vessel owner or crew members to lawfully 
incidentally

[[Page 19]]

take marine mammals in the course of a commercial fishing operation in a 
Category I or II fishery, the owner or authorized representative of a 
fishing vessel or nonvessel fishing gear must have in possession a valid 
Certificate of Authorization. The owner of a fishing vessel or nonvessel 
fishing gear is responsible for obtaining a Certificate of 
Authorization.
    (2) The granting and administration of Authorization Certificates 
under this part will be integrated and coordinated with existing fishery 
license, registration, or permit systems and related programs wherever 
possible. These programs may include, but are not limited to, state or 
interjurisdictional fisheries programs. If the administration of 
Authorization Certificates is integrated into a program, NMFS will 
publish a notice in the Federal Register announcing the integrated 
program and summarizing how an owner or authorized representative of a 
fishing vessel or non-fishing gear may register under that program or 
how registration will be achieved if no action is required on the part 
of the affected fisher. NMFS will make additional efforts to contact 
participants in the affected fishery via other appropriate means of 
notification.
    (b) Registration. (1) The owner of a vessel, or for nonvessel gear 
fisheries, the owner of gear, who participates in a Category I or II 
fishery is required to be registered for a Certificate of Authorization.
    (2) Unless a notice is published in the Federal Register announcing 
an integrated registration program, the owner of a vessel, or for 
nonvessel fishery, the owner of the gear must register for and receive 
an Authorization Certificate. To register, owners must submit the 
following information using the format specified by NMFS:
    (i) Name, address, and phone number of owner.
    (ii) Name, address, and phone number of operator, if different from 
owner, unless the name of the operator is not known or has not been 
established at the time the registration is submitted.
    (iii) For a vessel fishery, vessel name, length, home port; U.S. 
Coast Guard documentation number or state registration number, and if 
applicable; state commercial vessel license number and for a nonvessel 
fishery, a description of the gear and state commercial license number, 
if applicable.
    (iv) A list of all Category I and II fisheries in which the fisher 
may actively engage during the calendar year.
    (v) A certification signed and dated by the owner of an authorized 
representative of the owner as follows: ``I hereby certify that I am the 
owner of the vessel, that I have reviewed all information contained on 
this document, and that it is true and complete to the best of my 
knowledge.''
    (vi) A check or money order made payable to NMFS in the amount 
specified in the notice of the final List of Fisheries must accompany 
each registration submitted to NMFS. The amount of this fee will be 
based on recovering the administrative costs incurred in granting an 
authorization. The Assistant Administrator may waive the fee requirement 
for good cause upon the recommendation of the Regional Director.
    (3) If a notice is published in the Federal Register announcing an 
integrated registration program, the owner of a vessel, or for nonvessel 
fishery, the owner of the gear may register by following the directions 
provided in that notice. If a person receives a registration to which he 
or she is not entitled or if the registration contains incorrect, 
inaccurate or incomplete information, the person shall notify NMFS 
within 10 days following receipt. If a fisher participating in a 
Category I or II fishery who expects to receive automatic registration 
does not receive that registration within the time specified in the 
notice announcing the integrated registration program, the person shall 
notify NMFS as directed in the notice or may apply for registration by 
submitting the information required under paragraph (b)(1)(i) through 
(b)(1)(vi) of this section.
    (c) Address. Unless the granting and administration of 
authorizations under this part 229 is integrated and coordinated with 
existing fishery licenses, registrations, or related programs pursuant 
to paragraph (a) of this section, requests for registration forms and 
completed registration and renewal

[[Page 20]]

forms should be sent to the NMFS Regional Offices as follows:
    (1) Alaska Region, NMFS, P.O. Box 21668, 709 West 9th Street, 
Juneau, AK 99802; telephone: 907-586-7235;
    (2) Northwest Region, NMFS, 7600 Sand Point Way NE., Seattle, WA 
98115-0070; telephone: 206-526-4353;
    (3) Southwest Region, NMFS, 501 West Ocean Blvd., Suite 4200, Long 
Beach, CA 90802-4213; telephone: 562-980-4001;
    (4) Northeast Region, NMFS, 1 Blackburn Drive, Gloucester, MA 01930; 
telephone: 978-281-9254; or
    (5) Southeast Region, NMFS, 9721 Executive Center Drive North, St. 
Petersburg, FL 33702; telephone: 727-570-5312.
    (d) Issuance. (1) For integrated fisheries, an Authorization 
Certificate or other proof of registration will be issued annually to 
each fisher registered for that fishery.
    (2) For all other fisheries (i.e., non-integrated fisheries), NMFS 
will issue an Authorization Certificate and, if necessary, a decal to an 
owner or authorized representative who:
    (i) Submits a completed registration form and the required fee.
    (ii) Has complied with the requirements of this section and 
Secs. 229.6 and 229.7.
    (iii) Has submitted updated registration or renewal registration 
which includes a statement (yes/no) whether any marine mammals were 
killed or injured during the current or previous calendar year.
    (3) If a person receives a renewed Authorization Certificate or a 
decal to which he or she is not entitled, the person shall notify NMFS 
within 10 days following receipt.
    (e) Authorization Certificate and decal requirements. (1) If a decal 
has been issued under the conditions specified in paragraph (e)(2) of 
this section, the decal must be attached to the vessel on the port side 
of the cabin or, in the absence of a cabin, on the forward port side of 
the hull, and must be free of obstruction and in good condition. The 
decal must be attached to the Authorization Certificate for nonvessel 
fisheries.
    (2) The Authorization Certificate, or a copy, must be on board the 
vessel while it is operating in a Category I or II fishery, or, in the 
case of nonvessel fisheries, the Authorization Certificate with decal 
attached, or copy must be in the possession of the person in charge of 
the fishing operation. The Authorization Certificate, or copy, must be 
made available upon request to any state or Federal enforcement agent 
authorized to enforce the Act, any designated agent of NMFS, or any 
contractor providing observer services to NMFS.
    (3) Authorization Certificates and decals are not transferable. In 
the event of the sale or change in ownership of the vessel, the 
Authorization Certificate is void and the new owner must register for an 
Authorization Certificate and decal.
    (4) An Authorization Certificate holder must notify the issuing 
office in writing:
    (i) If the vessel or nonvessel fishing gear will engage in any 
Category I or II fishery not listed on the initial registration form at 
least 30 days prior to engaging in that fishery; and,
    (ii) If there are any changes in the mailing address or vessel 
ownership within 30 days of such change.
    (f) Reporting. Any Authorization Certificate holders must comply 
with the reporting requirements specified under Sec. 229.6.
    (g) Disposition of marine mammals. Any marine mammal incidentally 
taken must be immediately returned to the sea with a minimum of further 
injury, unless directed otherwise by NMFS personnel, a designated 
contractor or an official observer, or authorized otherwise by a 
scientific research permit that is in the possession of the operator.
    (h) Monitoring. Authorization Certificate holders must comply with 
the observer or other monitoring requirements specified under 
Sec. 229.7.
    (i) Deterrence. When necessary to deter a marine mammal from 
damaging fishing gear, catch, or other private property, or from 
endangering personal safety, vessel owners and crew members engaged in a 
Category I or II fishery must comply with all deterrence provisions set 
forth in the Act and all guidelines and prohibitions published 
thereunder.

[[Page 21]]

    (j) Self defense. When imminently necessary in self-defense or to 
save the life of a person in immediate danger, a marine mammal may be 
lethally taken if such taking is reported to NMFS in accordance with the 
requirements of Sec. 229.6.
    (k) Take reduction plans and emergency regulations. Authorization 
Certificate holders must comply with any applicable take reduction plans 
and emergency regulations.
    (l) Expiration. Authorization Certificates expire at the end of each 
calendar year.

[60 FR 45100, Aug. 30, 1995, as amended at 62 FR 46, Jan. 2, 1997; 64 FR 
9086, Feb. 24, 1999]



Sec. 229.5  Requirements for Category III fisheries.

    (a) General. Vessel owners and crew members of such vessels engaged 
only in Category III fisheries may incidentally take marine mammals 
without registering for or receiving an Authorization Certificate.
    (b) Reporting. Vessel owners engaged in a Category III fishery must 
comply with the reporting requirements specified in Sec. 229.6.
    (c) Disposition of marine mammals. Any marine mammal incidentally 
taken must be immediately returned to the sea with a minimum of further 
injury unless directed otherwise by NMFS personnel, a designated 
contractor, or an official observer, or authorized otherwise by a 
scientific research permit in the possession of the operator.
    (d) Monitoring. Vessel owners engaged in a Category III fishery must 
comply with the observer requirements specified under Sec. 229.7(d).
    (e) Deterrence. When necessary to deter a marine mammal from 
damaging fishing gear, catch, or other private property, or from 
endangering personal safety, vessel owners and crew members engaged in 
commercial fishing operations must comply with all deterrence provisions 
set forth in the Act and all guidelines and prohibitions published 
thereunder.
    (f) Self-defense. When imminently necessary in self-defense or to 
save the life of a person in immediate danger, a marine mammal may be 
lethally taken if such taking is reported to NMFS in accordance with the 
requirements of Sec. 229.6.
    (g) Emergency regulations. Vessel owners engaged in a Category III 
fishery must comply with any applicable emergency regulations.

[60 FR 45100, Aug. 30, 1995, as amended at 64 FR 9087, Feb. 24, 1999]



Sec. 229.6  Reporting requirements.

    (a) Vessel owners or operators engaged in any commercial fishery 
must report all incidental mortality and injury of marine mammals in the 
course of commercial fishing operations to the Assistant Administrator, 
or appropriate Regional Office, by mail or other means, such as fax or 
overnight mail specified by the Assistant Administrator. Reports must be 
sent within 48 hours after the end of each fishing trip during which the 
incidental mortality or injury occurred, or, for nonvessel fisheries, 
within 48 hours of an occurrence of an incidental mortality or injury. 
Reports must be submitted on a standard postage-paid form as provided by 
the Assistant Administrator. The vessel owner or operator must provide 
the following information on this form:
    (1) The vessel name, and Federal, state, or tribal registration 
numbers of the registered vessel;
    (2) The name and address of the vessel owner or operator;
    (3) The name and description of the fishery, including gear type and 
target species; and
    (4) The species and number of each marine mammal incidentally killed 
or injured, and the date, time, and approximate geographic location of 
such occurrence. A description of the animal(s) killed or injured must 
be provided if the species is unknown.
    (b) Participants in nonvessel fisheries must provide all of the 
information in paragraphs (a)(1) through (a)(4) of this section except, 
instead of providing the vessel name and vessel registration number, 
participants in nonvessel fisheries must provide the gear permit number.

[60 FR 45100, Aug. 30, 1995, as amended at 64 FR 9087, Feb. 24, 1999]

[[Page 22]]



Sec. 229.7  Monitoring of incidental mortalities and serious injuries.

    (a) Purpose. The Assistant Administrator will establish a program to 
monitor incidental mortality and serious injury of marine mammals during 
the course of commercial fishing operations in order to:
    (1) Obtain statistically reliable estimates of incidental mortality 
and serious injury;
    (2) Determine the reliability of reports of incidental mortality and 
injury under Sec. 229.6; and
    (3) Identify changes in fishing methods or technology that may 
increase or decrease incidental mortality and serious injury.
    (b) Observer program. Pursuant to paragraph (a) of this section, the 
Assistant Administrator may observe Category I and II vessels as 
necessary. Observers may, among other tasks:
    (1) Record incidental mortality and injury, and bycatch of other 
nontarget species;
    (2) Record numbers of marine mammals sighted; and
    (3) Perform other scientific investigations, which may include, but 
are not limited to, sampling and photographing incidental mortalities 
and serious injuries.
    (c) Observer requirements for participants in Category I and II 
fisheries. (1) If requested by NMFS or by a designated contractor 
providing observer services to NMFS, a vessel owner/operator must take 
aboard an observer to accompany the vessel on fishing trips.
    (2) After being notified by NMFS, or by a designated contractor 
providing observer services to NMFS, that the vessel is required to 
carry an observer, the vessel owner/operator must comply with the 
notification by providing information requested within the specified 
time on scheduled or anticipated fishing trips.
    (3) NMFS, or a designated contractor providing observer services to 
NMFS, may waive the observer requirement based on a finding that the 
facilities for housing the observer or for carrying out observer 
functions are so inadequate or unsafe that the health or safety of the 
observer or the safe operation of the vessel would be jeopardized.
    (4) The vessel owner/operator and crew must cooperate with the 
observer in the performance of the observer's duties including:
    (i) Providing, at no cost to the observer, the United States 
government, or the designated observer provider, food, toilet, bathing, 
sleeping accommodations, and other amenities that are equivalent to 
those provided to the crew, unless other arrangements are approved in 
advance by the Regional Administrator;
    (ii) Allowing for the embarking and debarking of the observer as 
specified by NMFS personnel or designated contractors. The operator of a 
vessel must ensure that transfers of observers at sea are accomplished 
in a safe manner, via small boat or raft, during daylight hours if 
feasible, as weather and sea conditions allow, and with the agreement of 
the observer involved;
    (iii) Allowing the observer access to all areas of the vessel 
necessary to conduct observer duties;
    (iv) Allowing the observer access to communications equipment and 
navigation equipment, when available on the vessel, as necessary to 
perform observer duties;
    (v) Providing true vessel locations by latitude and longitude, 
accurate to the minute, or by loran coordinates, upon request by the 
observer;
    (vi) Sampling, retaining, and storing of marine mammal specimens, 
other protected species specimens, or target or non-target catch 
specimens, upon request by NMFS personnel, designated contractors, or 
the observer, if adequate facilities are available and if feasible;
    (vii) Notifying the observer in a timely fashion of when all 
commercial fishing operations are to begin and end;
    (viii) Not impairing or in any way interfering with the research or 
observations being carried out; and
    (ix) Complying with other guidelines or regulations that NMFS may 
develop to ensure the effective deployment and use of observers.
    (5) Marine mammals or other specimens identified in paragraph 
(c)(4)(vi) of this section, which are readily accessible to crew 
members, must be

[[Page 23]]

brought on board the vessel and retained for the purposes of scientific 
research if feasible and requested by NMFS personnel, designated 
contractors, or the observer. Specimens so collected and retained must, 
upon request by NMFS personnel, designated contractors, or the observer, 
be retained in cold storage on board the vessel, if feasible, until 
removed at the request of NMFS personnel, designated contractors, or the 
observer, retrieved by authorized personnel of NMFS, or released by the 
observer for return to the ocean. These biological specimens may be 
transported on board the vessel during the fishing trip and back to port 
under this authorization.
    (d) Observer requirements for participants in Category III 
fisheries. (1) The Assistant Administrator may place observers on 
Category III vessels if the Assistant Administrator:
    (i) Believes that the incidental mortality and serious injury of 
marine mammals from such fishery may be contributing to the immediate 
and significant adverse impact on a species or stock listed as a 
threatened species or endangered species under the Endangered Species 
Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.); and
    (ii) Has complied with Sec. 229.9(a)(3)(i) and (ii); or
    (iii) Has the consent of the vessel owner.
    (2) If an observer is placed on a Category III vessel, the vessel 
owner and/or operator must comply with the requirements of 
Sec. 229.7(c).
    (e) Alternative observer program. The Assistant Administrator may 
establish an alternative observer program to provide statistically 
reliable information on the species and number of marine mammals 
incidentally taken in the course of commercial fishing operations. The 
alternative observer program may include direct observation of fishing 
activities from vessels, airplanes, or points on shore.

[60 FR 45100, Aug. 30, 1995, as amended at 64 FR 9087, Feb. 24, 1999]



Sec. 229.8  Publication of List of Fisheries.

    (a) The Assistant Administrator will publish in the Federal Register 
a proposed revised List of Fisheries on or about July 1 of each year for 
the purpose of receiving public comment. Each year, on or about October 
1, the Assistant Administrator will publish a final revised List of 
Fisheries, which will become effective January 1 of the next calendar 
year.
    (b) The proposed and final revised List of Fisheries will:
    (1) Categorize each commercial fishery based on the definitions of 
Category I, II, and III fisheries set forth in Sec. 229.2; and
    (2) List the marine mammals that have been incidentally injured or 
killed by commercial fishing operations and the estimated number of 
vessels or persons involved in each commercial fishery.
    (c) The Assistant Administrator may publish a revised List of 
Fisheries at other times, after notification and opportunity for public 
comment.
    (d) The revised final List of Fisheries will become effective no 
sooner than 30 days after publication in the Federal Register.

[60 FR 45100, Aug. 30, 1995, as amended at 64 FR 9087, Feb. 24, 1999]



Sec. 229.9  Emergency regulations.

    (a) If the Assistant Administrator finds that the incidental 
mortality or serious injury of marine mammals from commercial fisheries 
is having, or is likely to have, an immediate and significant adverse 
impact on a stock or species, the Assistant Administrator will:
    (1) In the case of a stock or species for which a take reduction 
plan is in effect--
    (i) Prescribe emergency regulations that, consistent with such plan 
to the maximum extent practicable, reduce incidental mortality and 
serious injury in that fishery; and
    (ii) Approve and implement on an expedited basis, any amendments to 
such plan that are recommended by the Take Reduction Team to address 
such adverse impact;
    (2) In the case of a stock or species for which a take reduction 
plan is being developed--
    (i) Prescribe emergency regulations to reduce such incidental 
mortality and serious injury in that fishery; and
    (ii) Approve and implement, on an expedited basis, such plan, which 
will

[[Page 24]]

provide methods to address such adverse impact if still necessary;
    (3) In the case of a stock or species for which a take reduction 
plan does not exist and is not being developed, or in the case of a 
Category III fishery that the Assistant Administrator believes may be 
contributing to such adverse impact,
    (i) Prescribe emergency regulations to reduce such incidental 
mortality and serious injury in that fishery, to the extent necessary to 
mitigate such adverse impact;
    (ii) Immediately review the stock assessment for such stock or 
species and the classification of such commercial fishery under this 
section to determine if a take reduction team should be established and 
if recategorization of the fishery is warranted; and
    (iii) Where necessary to address such adverse impact on a species or 
stock listed as a threatened species or endangered species under the 
Endangered Species Act (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.), place observers on 
vessels in a Category III fishery if the Assistant Administrator has 
reason to believe such vessels may be causing the incidental mortality 
and serious injury to marine mammals from such stock.
    (b) Prior to taking any action under Sec. 229.9(a)(1) through (3), 
the Assistant Administrator will consult with the Marine Mammal 
Commission, all appropriate Regional Fishery Management Councils, state 
fishery managers, and the appropriate take reduction team, if 
established.
    (c) Any emergency regulations issued under this section:
    (1) Shall be published in the Federal Register and will remain in 
effect for no more than 180 days or until the end of the applicable 
commercial fishing season, whichever is earlier, except as provided in 
paragraph (d) of this section; and
    (2) May be terminated by notification in the Federal Register at an 
earlier date if the Assistant Administrator determines that the reasons 
for the emergency regulations no longer exist.
    (d) If the Assistant Administrator finds that incidental mortality 
and serious injury of marine mammals in a commercial fishery is 
continuing to have an immediate and significant adverse impact on a 
stock or species, the Assistant Administrator may extend the emergency 
regulations for an additional period of not more than 90 days or until 
reasons for the emergency regulations no longer exist, whichever is 
earlier.

[60 FR 45100, Aug. 30, 1995, as amended at 64 FR 9087, Feb. 24, 1999]



Sec. 229.10  Penalties.

    (a) Except as provided for in paragraphs (b) and (c) of this 
section, any person who violates any regulation under this part or any 
provision of section 118 of the MMPA shall be subject to all penalties 
set forth in the Act.
    (b) The owner or master of a vessel that fails to comply with a take 
reduction plan shall be subject to the penalties of sections 105 and 107 
of the Act, and may be subject to the penalties of section 106 of the 
Act.
    (c) The owner of a vessel engaged in a Category I or II fishery who 
fails to ensure that a decal, or other physical evidence of such 
authorization issued by NMFS, is displayed on the vessel or is in 
possession of the operator of the vessel shall be subject to a penalty 
of not more than $100.
    (d) Failure to comply with take reduction plans or emergency 
regulations issued under this part may result in suspension or 
revocation of an Authorization Certificate, and failure to comply with a 
take reduction plan or emergency regulation is also subject to the 
penalties of sections 105 and 107 of the Act, and may be subject to the 
penalties of section 106 of the Act.
    (e) For fishers operating in Category I or II fisheries, failure to 
report all incidental injuries and mortalities within 48 hours of the 
end of each fishing trip, or failure to comply with requirements to 
carry an observer, will subject such persons to the penalties of 
sections 105 and 107 and may subject them to the penalties of section 
106 of the Act, which will result in suspension, revocation, or denial 
of an Authorization Certificate until such requirements have been 
fulfilled.
    (f) For fishers operating in Category III fisheries, failure to 
report all incidental injuries and mortalities within 48 hours of the 
end of each fishing trip

[[Page 25]]

will subject such persons to the penalties of sections 105 and 107, and 
may subject them to section 106, of the Act.
    (g) Suspension, revocation or denial of Authorization Certificates. 
(1) Until the Authorization Certificate holder complies with the 
regulations under this part, the Assistant Administrator shall suspend 
or revoke an Authorization Certificate or deny an annual renewal of an 
Authorization Certificate in accordance with the provisions in 15 CFR 
part 904 if the Authorization Certificate holder fails to report all 
incidental mortality and injury of marine mammals as required under 
Sec. 229.6; or fails to take aboard an observer if requested by NMFS or 
its designated contractors.
    (2) The Assistant Administrator may suspend or revoke an 
Authorization Certificate or deny an annual renewal of an Authorization 
Certificate in accordance with the provisions in 15 CFR part 904 if the 
Authorization Certificate holder fails to comply with any applicable 
take reduction plan, take reduction regulations, or emergency 
regulations developed under this subpart or subparts B and C of this 
part or if the Authorization Certificate holder fails to comply with 
other requirements of these regulations;
    (3) A suspended Authorization Certificate may be reinstated at any 
time at the discretion of the Assistant Administrator provided the 
Assistant Administrator has determined that the reasons for the 
suspension no longer apply or corrective actions have been taken.

[60 FR 45100, Aug. 30, 1995, as amended at 64 FR 9088, Feb. 24, 1999]



Sec. 229.11  Confidential fisheries data.

    (a) Proprietary information collected under this part is 
confidential and includes information, the unauthorized disclosure of 
which could be prejudicial or harmful, such as information or data that 
are identifiable with an individual fisher. Proprietary information 
obtained under part 229 will not be disclosed, in accordance with NOAA 
Administrative Order 216-100, except:
    (1) To Federal employees whose duties require access to such 
information;
    (2) To state employees under an agreement with NMFS that prevents 
public disclosure of the identity or business of any person;
    (3) When required by court order; or
    (4) In the case of scientific information involving fisheries, to 
employees of Regional Fishery Management Councils who are responsible 
for fishery management plan development and monitoring.
    (5) To other individuals or organizations authorized by the 
Assistant Administrator to analyze this information, so long as the 
confidentiality of individual fishers is not revealed.
    (b) Information will be made available to the public in aggregate, 
summary, or other such form that does not disclose the identity or 
business of any person in accordance with NOAA Administrative Order 216-
100. Aggregate or summary form means data structured so that the 
identity of the submitter cannot be determined either from the present 
release of the data or in combination with other releases.

[60 FR 45100, Aug. 30, 1995, as amended at 64 FR 9088, Feb. 24, 1999]



Sec. 229.12  Consultation with the Secretary of the Interior.

    The Assistant Administrator will consult with the Secretary of the 
Interior prior to taking actions or making determinations under this 
part that affect or relate to species or population stocks of marine 
mammals for which the Secretary of the Interior is responsible under the 
Act.



       Subpart B_Takes of Endangered and Threatened Marine Mammals



Sec. 229.20  Issuance of permits.

    (a) Determinations. During a period of up to 3 consecutive years, 
NMFS will allow the incidental, but not the intentional, taking by 
persons using vessels of the United States or foreign vessels that have 
valid fishing permits issued by the Assistant Administrator in 
accordance with section 204(b) of the Magnuson Fishery Conservation and 
Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1824(b)), while engaging in commercial fishing 
operations, of marine mammals from a species or stock designated as 
depleted because of its listing as an endangered species or threatened 
species under the

[[Page 26]]

Endangered Species Act of 1973 if the Assistant Administrator determines 
that:
    (1) The incidental mortality and serious injury from commercial 
fisheries will have a negligible impact on such species or stock;
    (2) A recovery plan has been developed or is being developed for 
such species or stock pursuant to the Endangered Species Act of 1973; 
and
    (3) Where required under regulations in subpart A of this part:
    (i) A monitoring program has been established under Sec. 229.7;
    (ii) Vessels engaged in such fisheries are registered in accordance 
with Sec. 229.4; and
    (iii) A take reduction plan has been developed or is being developed 
for such species or stock in accordance with regulations at subpart C of 
this part.
    (b) Procedures for making determinations. In making any of the 
determinations listed in paragraph (a) of this section, the Assistant 
Administrator will publish an announcement in the Federal Register of 
fisheries having takes of marine mammals listed under the Endangered 
Species Act, including a summary of available information regarding the 
fisheries interactions with listed species. Any interested party may, 
within 45 days of such publication, submit to the Assistant 
Administrator written data or views with respect to the listed 
fisheries. As soon as practicable after the end of the 45 days following 
publication, NMFS will publish in the Federal Register a list of the 
fisheries for which the determinations listed in paragraph (a) of this 
section have been made. This publication will set forth a summary of the 
information used to make the determinations.
    (c) Issuance of authorization. The Assistant Administrator will 
issue appropriate permits for vessels in fisheries that are required to 
register under Sec. 229.4 and for which determinations under the 
procedures of paragraph (b) of this section can be made.
    (d) Category III fisheries. Vessel owners engaged only in Category 
III fisheries for which determinations are made under the procedures of 
paragraph (b) of this section will not be subject to the penalties of 
this Act for the incidental taking of marine mammals to which this 
subpart applies, as long as the vessel owner or operator of such vessel 
reports any incidental mortality or injury of such marine mammals in 
accordance with the requirements of Sec. 229.6.
    (e) Emergency authority. During the course of the commercial fishing 
season, if the Assistant Administrator determines that the level of 
incidental mortality or serious injury from commercial fisheries for 
which such a determination was made under this section has resulted or 
is likely to result in an impact that is more than negligible on the 
endangered or threatened species or stock, the Assistant Administrator 
will use the emergency authority of Sec. 229.9 to protect such species 
or stock, and may modify any permit granted under this paragraph as 
necessary.
    (f) Suspension, revocation, modification and amendment. The 
Assistant Administrator may, pursuant to the provisions of 15 CFR part 
904, suspend or revoke a permit granted under this section if the 
Assistant Administrator determines that the conditions or limitations 
set forth in such permit are not being complied with. The Assistant 
Administrator may amend or modify, after notification and opportunity 
for public comment, the list of fisheries published in accordance with 
paragraph (b) of this section whenever the Assistant Administrator 
determines there has been a significant change in the information or 
conditions used to determine such a list.
    (g) Southern sea otters. This subpart does not apply to the taking 
of Southern (California) sea otters.

[60 FR 45100, Aug. 30, 1995, as amended at 64 FR 9088, Feb. 24, 1999]



   Subpart C_Take Reduction Plan Regulations and Emergency Regulations



Sec. 229.30  Basis.

    Section 118(f)(9) of the Act authorizes the Director, NMFS, to 
impose regulations governing commercial fishing operations, when 
necessary, to implement a take reduction plan in order to

[[Page 27]]

protect or restore a marine mammal stock or species covered by such a 
plan.

[64 FR 9088, Feb. 24, 1999]



Sec. 229.31  Pacific Offshore Cetacean Take Reduction Plan.

    (a) Purpose and scope. The purpose of this section is to implement 
the Pacific Offshore Cetacean Take Reduction Plan. Paragraphs (b) 
through (d) of this section apply to all U.S. drift gillnet fishing 
vessels operating in waters seaward of the coast of California or 
Oregon, including adjacent high seas waters. For purposes of this 
section, the fishing season is defined as beginning May 1 and ending on 
January 31 of the following year.
    (b) Extenders. An extender is a line that attaches a buoy (float) to 
a drift gillnet's floatline. The floatline is attached to the top of the 
drift gillnet. All extenders (buoy lines) must be at least 6 fathoms (36 
ft; 10.9 m) in length during all sets. Accordingly, all floatlines must 
be fished at a minimum of 36 feet (10.9 m) below the surface of the 
water.
    (c) Pingers. (1) For the purposes of this paragraph (c), a pinger is 
an acoustic deterrent device which, when immersed in water, broadcasts a 
10 kHz (2 kHz) sound at 132 dB (4 dB) re 1 micropascal at 1 m, lasting 
300 milliseconds (+ 15 milliseconds), and repeating every 4 seconds (+ 
.2 seconds); and remains operational to a water depth of at least 100 
fathoms (600 ft or 182.88 m).
    (2) While at sea, operators of drift gillnet vessels with gillnets 
onboard must carry enough pingers on the vessel to meet the requirements 
set forth under paragraphs (c)(3) through(6) of this section.
    (3) Floatline. Pingers shall be attached within 30 ft (9.14 m) of 
the floatline and spaced no more than 300 ft (91.44 m) apart.
    (4) Leadline. Pingers shall be attached within 36 ft (10.97 m) of 
the leadline and spaced no more than 300 ft (91.44 m) apart.
    (5) Staggered Configuration. Pingers attached within 30 ft (9.14 m) 
of the floatline and within 36 ft (10.97 m) of the leadline shall be 
staggered such that the horizontal distance between them is no more than 
150 ft (45.5 m).
    (6) Any materials used to weight pingers must not change its 
specifications set forth under paragraph (c)(1) of this section.
    (7) The pingers must be operational and functioning at all times 
during deployment.
    (8) If requested, NMFS may authorize the use of pingers with 
specifications or pinger configurations differing from those set forth 
in paragraphs (c)(1) and (c)(3) of this section for limited, 
experimental purposes within a single fishing season.
    (d) Skipper education workshops. After notification from NMFS, 
vessel operators must attend a skipper education workshop before 
commencing fishing each fishing season. For the 1997/1998 fishing 
season, all vessel operators must have attended one skipper education 
workshop by October 30, 1997. NMFS may waive the requirement to attend 
these workshops by notice to all vessel operators.

[62 FR 51813, Oct. 3, 1997, as amended at 63 FR 27861, May 21, 1998; 64 
FR 3432, Jan. 22, 1999]



Sec. 229.32  Atlantic large whale take reduction plan regulations.

    (a)(1) Purpose and scope. The purpose of this section is to 
implement the Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Plan to reduce 
incidental mortality and serious injury of fin, humpback, and right 
whales in specific Category I and Category II commercial fisheries from 
Maine through Florida. Specific Category I and II commercial fisheries 
within the scope of the Plan are identified and updated in the annual 
List of Fisheries. The measures identified in the Atlantic Large Whale 
Take Reduction Plan are also intended to benefit minke whales, which are 
not designated as a strategic stock, but are known to be taken 
incidentally in gillnet and trap/pot fisheries. The gear types affected 
by this plan include gillnets (e.g., anchored, drift, and shark) and 
traps/pots. The Assistant Administrator may revise the requirements set 
forth in this section in accordance with paragraph (i) of this section.
    (2) Regulated waters. (i) The regulations in this section apply to 
all U.S. waters in the Atlantic except for the

[[Page 28]]

areas exempted in paragraph (a)(3) of this section.
    (ii) The six-mile line referred to in paragraph (c)(2)(iii) of this 
section is a line connecting the following points (Machias Seal to Isle 
of Shoals):

4431.98 N. lat., 679.72 W. long (Machias Seal)
443.42 N. lat., 6810.26 W. long (Mount Desert 
          Island)
4340.98 N. lat., 6848.84 W. long (Matinicus)
4339.24 N. lat., 6918.54 W. long (Monhegan)
4329.4 N. lat., 705.88 W. long (Casco Bay)
4255.38 N. lat., 7028.68 W. long (Isle of Shoals)

    (iii) The pocket waters referred to in paragraph (c)(2)(iii) of this 
section are defined as follows:

West of Monhegan Island in the area north of the line 4342.17 
          N. lat., 6934.27 W. long and 4342.25 N. 
          lat., 6919.3 W. long
East of Monhegan Island in the area located north of the line 
          4344 N. lat., 6915.08 W. long and 
          4348.17 N. lat., 698.02 W. long
South of Vinalhaven Island in the area located west of the line 
          4352.31 N. lat., 6840 W. long and 
          4358.12 N. lat., 6832.95 W. long
South of Bois Bubert Island in the area located northwest of the line 
          4419.27 N. lat., 6749.5 W. long and 
          4423.67 N. lat., 6740.5 W. long

    (3) Exempted waters. (i) The regulations in this section do not 
apply to waters landward of the 72 COLREGS demarcation lines 
(International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea, 1972), as 
depicted or noted on nautical charts published by the National Oceanic 
and Atmospheric Administration (Coast Charts 1:80,000 scale), and as 
described in 33 CFR part 80 with the exception of the COLREGS lines for 
Casco Bay (Maine), Portsmouth Harbor (New Hampshire), Gardiners Bay and 
Long Island Sound (New York), and the state of Massachusetts.
    (ii) Other exempted waters.

                                  Maine

    The regulations in this section do not apply to waters landward of a 
line connecting the following points (Quoddy Narrows/US-Canada border to 
Odiornes Pt., Portsmouth, New Hampshire):
4449.67 N. lat., 6657.77 W. long. (R N ``2'', Quoddy 
          Narrows)
4448.64 N. lat., 6656.43 W. long. (G ``1'' Whistle, 
          West Quoddy Head)
4447.36 N. lat., 6659.25 W. long. (R N ``2'', Morton 
          Ledge)
4445.51 N. lat., 6702.87 W. long. (R ``28M'' 
          Whistle, Baileys Mistake)
4437.70 N. lat., 6709.75 W. long. (Obstruction, 
          Southeast of Cutler)
4427.77 N. lat., 6732.86 W. long. (Freeman Rock, 
          East of Great Wass Island)
4425.74 N. lat., 6738.39 W. long. (R ``2SR'' Bell, 
          Seahorse Rock, West of Great Wass Island)
4421.66 N. lat., 6751.78 W. long. (R N ``2'', Petit 
          Manan Island)
4419.08 N. lat., 6802.05 W. long. (R ``2S'' Bell, 
          Schoodic Island)
4413.55 N. lat., 6810.71 W. long. (R ``8BI'' 
          Whistle, Baker Island)
4408.36 N. lat., 6814.75 W. long. (Southern Point, 
          Great Duck Island)
4359.36 N. lat., 6837.95 W. long. (R ``2'' Bell, 
          Roaring Bull Ledge, Isle Au Haut)
4359.83 N. lat., 6850.06 W. long. (R ``2A'' Bell, 
          Old Horse Ledge)
4356.72 N. lat., 6904.89 W. long. (G ``5TB'' Bell, 
          Two Bush Channel)
4350.28 N. lat., 6918.86 W. long. (R ``2 OM'' 
          Whistle, Old Man Ledge)
4348.96 N. lat., 6931.15 W. long. (GR C ``PL'', 
          Pemaquid Ledge)
4343.64 N. lat., 6937.58 W. long. (R ``2BR'' Bell, 
          Bantam Rock)
4341.44 N. lat., 6945.27 W. long. (R ``20ML'' Bell, 
          Mile Ledge)
4336.04 N. lat., 7003.98 W. long. (RG N ``BS'', 
          Bulwark Shoal)
4331.94 N. lat., 7008.68 W. long. (G ``1'', East Hue 
          and Cry)
4327.63 N. lat., 7017.48 W. long. (RW ``WI'' 
          Whistle, Wood Island)
4320.23 N. lat., 7023.64 W. long. (RW ``CP'' 
          Whistle, Cape Porpoise)
4304.06 N. lat., 7036.70 W. long. (R N ``2MR'', 
          Murray Rock)
4302.93 N. lat., 7041.47 W. long. (R ``2KR'' 
          Whistle, Kittery Point)
4302.55 N. lat., 7043.33 W. long. (Odiornes Pt., 
          Portsmouth, New Hampshire)

                              New Hampshire

    New Hampshire state waters are exempt from the minimum number of 
traps per trawl requirement in paragraph (c)(2)(iii) of this section. 
Harbor waters landward of the following lines are exempt from all the 
regulations in this section.
A line from 4253.691 N. lat., 7048.516 W. long. to 
          4253.516 N. lat., 7048.748 W. long. 
          (Hampton Harbor)
A line from 4259.986 N. lat., 7044.654 W. long. to 
          4259.956 N., 7044.737 W. long. (Rye 
          Harbor)

                              Rhode Island

    Rhode Island state waters are exempt from the minimum number of 
traps per trawl requirement in paragraph (c)(2)(iii) of this section. 
Harbor waters landward of the following lines are exempt from all the 
regulations in this section.

[[Page 29]]

A line from 4122.441 N. lat., 7130.781 W. long. to 
          4122.447 N. lat., 7130.893 W. long. (Pt. 
          Judith Pond Inlet)
A line from 4121.310 N. lat., 7138.300 W. long. to 
          4121.300 N. lat., 7138.330 W. long. 
          (Ninigret Pond Inlet)
A line from 4119.875 N. lat., 7143.061 W. long. to 
          4119.879 N. lat., 7143.115 W. long. 
          (Quonochontaug Pond Inlet)
A line from 4119.660 N. lat., 7145.750 W. long. to 
          4119.660 N. lat., 7145.780 W. long. 
          (Weekapaug Pond Inlet)
A line from 4126.550 N. lat., 7126.400 W. long. to 
          4126.500 N. lat, 7126.505 W. long. 
          (Pettaquamscutt Inlet)

                                New York

    The regulations in this section do not apply to waters landward of a 
line that follows the territorial sea baseline through Block Island 
Sound (Watch Hill Point, RI, to Montauk Point, NY).

                              Massachusetts

    The regulations in this section do not apply to waters landward of 
the first bridge over any embayment, harbor, or inlet in Massachusetts. 
The following Massachusetts state waters are exempt from the minimum 
number of traps per trawl requirement in paragraph (c)(2)(iii) of this 
section:
    From the New Hampshire border to 70 W longitude south of Cape Cod, 
waters in EEZ Nearshore Management Area 1 and the Outer Cape Lobster 
Management Area (as defined in the American Lobster Fishery regulations 
under Sec. 697.18 of this title), from the shoreline to 3 nautical miles 
from shore, and including waters of Cape Cod Bay southeast of a straight 
line connecting 41 55.8 N lat., 708.4 W long. and 
4147.2 N lat., 7019.5 W long.
    From 70 W longitude south of Cape Cod to the Rhode Island border, 
all Massachusetts state waters in EEZ Nearshore Management Area 2 and 
the Outer Cape Lobster Management Area (as defined in the American 
Lobster Fishery regulations under Sec. 697.18 of this title), including 
federal waters of Nantucket Sound west of 70 W longitude.

                             South Carolina

    The regulations in this section do not apply to waters landward of a 
line connecting the following points from 3234.717 N. lat., 
8008.565 W. long. to 3234.686 N. lat., 
8008.642 W. long. (Captain Sams Inlet)

    (4) Sinking groundline exemption. The fisheries regulated under this 
section are exempt from the requirement to have groundlines composed of 
sinking line if their groundline is at a depth equal to or greater than 
280 fathoms (1,680 ft or 512.1 m).
    (5) Net panel weak link and anchoring exemption. The anchored 
gillnet fisheries regulated under this section are exempt from the 
requirement to install weak links in the net panel and anchor each end 
of the net string if the float-line is at a depth equal to or greater 
than 280 fathoms (1,680 ft or 512.1 m).
    (6) Island buffer. Those fishing in waters within \1/4\ nautical 
miles of the following Maine islands are exempt from the minimum number 
of traps per trawl requirement in paragraph (c)(2)(iii) of this section: 
Monhegan Island, Matinicus Island Group (Metinic Island, Small Green 
Island, Large Green Island, Seal Island, Wooden Ball Island, Matinicus 
Island, Ragged Island) and Isles of Shoals Island Group (Duck Island, 
Appledore Island, Cedar Island, Smuttynose Island).
    (b) Gear marking requirements--(1) Specified areas. The following 
areas are specified for gear marking purposes: Northern Inshore State 
Trap/Pot Waters, Cape Cod Bay Restricted Area, Massachusetts Restricted 
Area, Stellwagen Bank/Jeffreys Ledge Restricted Area, Northern Nearshore 
Trap/Pot Waters Area, Great South Channel Restricted Trap/Pot Area, 
Great South Channel Restricted Gillnet Area, Great South Channel Sliver 
Restricted Area, Southern Nearshore Trap/Pot Waters Area, Offshore Trap/
Pot Waters Area, Other Northeast Gillnet Waters Area, Mid/South Atlantic 
Gillnet Waters Area, Other Southeast Gillnet Waters Area, Southeast U.S. 
Restricted Areas, and Southeast U.S. Monitoring Area.
    (i) Jordan Basin. The Jordan Basin Restricted Area is bounded by the 
following points connected by straight lines in the order listed:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                     Point                        N. Lat.      W. Long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
JBRA1.........................................  4315        7044
MRA2...........................  4212        7030
MRA3...........................  4230        7030
MRA4...........................  4230        6945
MRA5...........................  4156.5      6945
MRA6...........................  4121.5      6916
MRA7...........................  4115.3      6957.9
MRA8...........................  4120.3      7000
MRA9...........................  4140.2      7000
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (ii) Closure. From February 1 to April 30, it is prohibited to fish 
with, set, or possess trap/pot gear in this area unless stowed in 
accordance with Sec. 229.2.
    (iii) Area-specific gear or vessel requirements. From May 1 through 
January 31, no person or vessel may fish with or possess trap/pot gear 
in the Massachusetts Restricted Area unless that gear complies with the 
gear marking requirements specified in paragraph (b) of this section, 
the universal trap/pot gear requirements specified in paragraph (c)(1) 
of this section, and the area-specific requirements listed in

[[Page 33]]

(c)(2) of this section, or unless the gear is stowed as specified in 
Sec. 229.2.
    (4) Great South Channel Restricted Trap/Pot Area--(i) Area. The 
Great South Channel Restricted Trap/Pot Area consists of the area 
bounded by the following points.

------------------------------------------------------------------------
             Point                     N. Lat.             W. Long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
GSC1...........................  4140        6945
GSC2...........................  410         6905
GSC3...........................  4138        6813
GSC4...........................  4210        6831
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (ii) Closure. From April 1 through June 30, it is prohibited to fish 
with, set, or possess trap/pot gear in this area unless stowed in 
accordance with Sec. 229.2.
    (iii) Area-specific gear or vessel requirements. From July 1 through 
March 31, no person or vessel may fish with or possess trap/pot gear in 
the Great South Channel Restricted Trap/Pot Area unless that gear 
complies with the gear marking requirements specified in paragraph (b) 
of this section, the universal trap/pot gear requirements specified in 
paragraph (c)(1) of this section, and the area-specific requirements 
listed in (c)(2) of this section, or unless the gear is stowed as 
specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (5) Stellwagen Bank/Jeffreys Ledge Restricted Area--(i) Area. The 
Stellwagen Bank/Jeffreys Ledge Restricted Area includes all Federal 
waters of the Gulf of Maine, except those designated as the 
Massachusetts Restricted Area in paragraph (c)(3) of this section, that 
lie south of 4315 N. lat. and west of 7000 W. long.
    (ii) Year round area-specific gear or vessel requirements. No person 
or vessel may fish with or possess trap/pot gear in the Stellwagen Bank/
Jeffreys Ledge Restricted Area unless that gear complies with the gear 
marking requirements specified in paragraph (b) of this section, the 
universal trap/pot gear requirements specified in paragraph (c)(1) of 
this section, and the area-specific requirements listed in paragraph 
(c)(2) of this section, or unless the gear is stowed as specified in 
Sec. 229.2.
    (6) Offshore Trap/Pot \4\ Waters Area--(i) Area. The Offshore Trap/
Pot Waters Area includes all Federal waters of the EEZ Offshore 
Management Area 3, including the area known as the Area 2/3 Overlap and 
Area 3/5 Overlap as defined in the American Lobster Fishery regulations 
at Sec. 697.18 of this title, with the exception of the Great South 
Channel Restricted Trap/Pot Area and Southeast Restricted Area, and 
extending south along the 100-fathom (600-ft or 182.9-m) depth contour 
from 3514 N. lat. south to 2751 N. lat., and east to 
the eastern edge of the EEZ.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \4\ Fishermen using red crab trap/pot gear should refer to 
Sec. 229.32(c)(10) for the restrictions applicable to red crab trap/pot 
fishery.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (ii) Year-round area-specific gear or vessel requirements. No person 
or vessel may fish with or possess trap/pot gear in the Offshore Trap/
Pot Waters Area that overlaps an area from the U.S./Canada border south 
to a straight line from 4118.2 N. lat., 7151.5 W. 
long. (Watch Hill Point, RI) south to 4000 N. lat., and then 
east to the eastern edge of the EEZ, unless that gear complies with the 
gear marking requirements specified in paragraph (b) of this section, 
the universal trap/pot gear requirements specified in paragraph (c)(1) 
of this section, and the area-specific requirements listed in (c)(2) of 
this section, or unless the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (iii) Seasonal area-specific gear or vessel requirements. From 
September 1 to May 31, no person or vessel may fish with or possess 
trap/pot gear in the Offshore Trap/Pot Waters Area that overlaps an area 
bounded on the north by a straight line from 4118.2 N. lat., 
7151.5 W. long. (Watch Hill Point, RI) south to 4000 
N. lat. and then east to the eastern edge of the EEZ, and bounded on the 
south by a line at 3200 N. lat., and east to the eastern edge 
of the EEZ, unless that gear complies with the gear marking requirements 
specified in paragraph (b) of this section, the universal trap/pot gear 
requirements specified in paragraph (c)(1) of this section, and area-
specific requirements in (c)(2) or unless the gear is stowed as 
specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (iv) Seasonal area-specific gear or vessel requirements. From 
November 15 to

[[Page 34]]

April 15, no person or vessel may fish with or possess trap/pot gear in 
the Offshore Trap/Pot Waters Area that overlaps an area from 
3200 N. lat. south to 2900 N. lat. and east to the 
eastern edge of the EEZ, unless that gear complies with the gear marking 
requirements specified in paragraph (b) of this section, the universal 
trap/pot gear requirements specified in paragraph (c)(1) of this 
section, the area-specific requirements in paragraph (c)(2) of this 
section or unless the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (v) Seasonal area-specific gear or vessel requirements. From 
December 1 to March 31, no person or vessel may fish with or possess 
trap/pot gear in the Offshore Trap/Pot Waters Area that overlaps an area 
from 2900 N. lat. south to 2751 N. lat. and east to 
the eastern edge of the EEZ, unless that gear complies with the gear 
marking requirements specified in paragraph (b) of this section, the 
universal trap/pot gear requirements specified in paragraph (c)(1) of 
this section, the area-specific requirements in paragraph (c)(2) in this 
section, or unless the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (vi) [Reserved]
    (7) Northern Inshore State Trap/Pot Waters Area--(i) Area. The 
Northern Inshore State Trap/Pot Waters Area includes the state waters of 
Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Maine, with the 
exception of Massachusetts Restricted Area and those waters exempted 
under paragraph (a)(3) of this section. Federal waters west of 
7000 N. lat. in Nantucket Sound are also included in the 
Northern Inshore State Trap/Pot Waters Area.
    (ii) Year-round area-specific gear or vessel requirements. No person 
or vessel may fish with or possess trap/pot gear in the Northern Inshore 
State Trap/Pot Waters Area unless that gear complies with the gear 
marking requirements specified in paragraph (b) of this section, the 
universal trap/pot gear requirements specified in paragraph (c)(1) of 
this section, the area-specific requirements in (c)(2) of this section 
or unless the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (8) Northern Nearshore Trap/Pot Waters Area--(i) Area. The Northern 
Nearshore Trap/Pot Waters Area includes all Federal waters of EEZ 
Nearshore Management Area 1, Area 2, and the Outer Cape Lobster 
Management Area (as defined in the American Lobster Fishery regulations 
at 50 CFR 697.18 of this title), with the exception of the Great South 
Channel Restricted Trap/Pot Area, Massachusetts Restricted Area, 
Stellwagen Bank/Jeffreys Ledge Restricted Area, and Federal waters west 
of 7000 N. lat. in Nantucket Sound (included in the Northern 
Inshore State Trap/Pot Waters Area) and those waters exempted under 
paragraph (a)(3) of this section.
    (ii) Year-round area-specific gear or vessel requirements. No person 
or vessel may fish with or possess trap/pot gear in the Northern 
Nearshore Trap/Pot Waters Area unless that gear complies with the gear 
marking requirements specified in paragraph (b) of this section, the 
universal trap/pot gear requirements specified in paragraph (c)(1) of 
this section, the area-specific requirements in paragraph (c)(2) of this 
section, or unless the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (9) Southern Nearshore \5\ Trap/Pot Waters Area--(i) Area. The 
Southern Nearshore Trap/Pot Waters Area includes all state and Federal 
waters which fall within EEZ Nearshore Management Area 4, EEZ Nearshore 
Management Area 5, and EEZ Nearshore Management Area 6 (as defined in 
the American Lobster Fishery regulations in 50 CFR 697.18, and excluding 
the Area 3/5 Overlap), and inside the 100-fathom (600-ft or 182.9-m) 
depth contour line from 3530 N. lat. south to 2751 
N. lat. and extending inshore to the shoreline or exemption line, with 
the exception of those waters exempted under paragraph (a)(3) of this 
section and those waters in the Southeast Restricted Area defined in 
paragraph (f)(1) of this section.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \5\ Fishermen using red crab trap/pot gear should refer to 
Sec. 229.32(c)(10) for the restrictions applicable to red crab trap/pot 
fishery.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (ii) Year-round area-specific gear or vessel requirements. No person 
or vessel may fish with or possess trap/pot gear in the Southern 
Nearshore Trap/Pot Waters Area that is east of a straight line from 
4118.2 N. lat., 7151.5 W. long. (Watch Hill Point, 
RI) south to

[[Page 35]]

4000 N. lat., unless that gear complies with the gear marking 
requirements specified in paragraph (b) of this section, the universal 
trap/pot gear requirements specified in paragraph (c)(1) of this 
section, the area-specific requirements in paragraph (c)(2) of this 
section or unless the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (iii) Seasonal area-specific gear or vessel requirements. From 
September 1 to May 31, no person or vessel may fish with or possess 
trap/pot gear in the Southern Nearshore Trap/Pot Waters Area that 
overlaps an area bounded on the north by a straight line from 
4118.2 N. lat., 7151.5 W. long. (Watch Hill Point, 
RI) south to 4000 N. lat. and then east to the eastern edge of 
the EEZ, and bounded on the south by 3200 N. lat., and east to 
the eastern edge of the EEZ, unless that gear complies with the gear 
marking requirements specified in paragraph (b) of this section, the 
universal trap/pot gear requirements in paragraph (c)(1) of this 
section, the area-specific requirements in paragraph (c)(2) of this 
section or unless the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (iv) Seasonal area-specific gear or vessel requirements. From 
November 15 to April 15, no person or vessel may fish with or possess 
trap/pot gear in the Southern Nearshore Trap/Pot Waters Area that 
overlaps an area from 3200 N. lat. south to 2900 N. 
lat. and east to the eastern edge of the EEZ, unless that gear complies 
with the gear marking requirements specified in paragraph (b) of this 
section, the universal trap/pot gear requirements specified in paragraph 
(c)(1) of this section, the area-specific requirements in paragraph 
(c)(2) of this section or unless the gear is stowed as specified in 
Sec. 229.2.
    (v) Seasonal area-specific gear or vessel requirements. From 
December 1 to March 31, no person or vessel may fish with or possess 
trap/pot gear in the Southern Nearshore Trap/Pot Waters Area that 
overlaps an area from 2900 N. lat. south to 2751 N. 
lat. and east to the eastern edge of the EEZ, unless that gear complies 
with the gear marking requirements specified in paragraph (b) of this 
section, the universal trap/pot gear requirements specified in paragraph 
(c)(1) of this section, the area-specific requirements in (c)(2) of this 
section or unless the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (vi) [Reserved]
    (10) Restrictions applicable to the red crab trap/pot fishery--(i) 
Area. The red crab trap/pot fishery is regulated in the waters 
identified in paragraphs (c)(6)(i) and (c)(9)(i) of this section.
    (ii) Year-round area-specific gear or vessel requirements. No person 
or vessel may fish with or possess red crab trap/pot gear in the area 
identified in paragraph (c)(10)(i) of this section that overlaps an area 
from the U.S./Canada border south to a straight line from 41 
18.2 N. lat., 7151.5 W. long. (Watch Hill Point, RI) 
south to 4000 N. lat., and then east to the eastern edge of 
the EEZ, unless that gear complies with the gear marking requirements 
specified in paragraph (b) of this section, the universal trap/pot gear 
requirements specified in paragraph (c)(1) of this section, the area-
specific requirements in paragraph (c)(2) of this section or unless the 
gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (iii) Seasonal area-specific gear or vessel requirements. From 
September 1 to May 31, no person or vessel may fish with or possess red 
crab trap/pot gear in the area identified in paragraph (c)(10)(i) of 
this section that overlaps an area bounded on the north by a straight 
line from 4118.2 N. lat., 7151.5 W. long. (Watch 
Hill Point, RI) south to 4000 N. lat. and then east to the 
eastern edge of the EEZ, and bounded on the south by a line at 
3200 N. lat., and east to the eastern edge of the EEZ, unless 
that gear complies with the gear marking requirements specified in 
paragraph (b) of this section, the universal trap/pot gear requirements 
specified in paragraph (c)(1) of this section, the area-specific 
requirements in (c)(2) of this section or unless the gear is stowed as 
specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (iv) Seasonal area-specific gear or vessel requirements. From 
November 15 to April 15, no person or vessel may fish with or possess 
red crab trap/pot gear in the area identified in paragraph (c)(11)(i) of 
this section that overlaps an area from 3200 N. lat. south to 
2900 N. lat. and east to the eastern

[[Page 36]]

edge of the EEZ, unless that gear complies with the gear marking 
requirements specified in paragraph (b) of this section, the universal 
trap/pot gear requirements specified in paragraph (c)(1) of this 
section, the area-specific requirements in paragraph (c)(2) of this 
section or unless the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (v) Seasonal area-specific gear or vessel requirements. From 
December 1 to March 31, no person or vessel may fish with or possess red 
crab trap/pot gear in the area identified in paragraph (c)(11)(i) of 
this section that overlaps an area from 2900 N. lat. south to 
2751 N. lat. and east to the eastern edge of the EEZ, unless 
that gear complies with the gear marking requirements specified in 
paragraph (b) of this section, the universal trap/pot gear requirements 
specified in paragraph (c)(1) of this section, the area-specific 
requirements in (c)(2) of this section or unless the gear is stowed as 
specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (vi) [Reserved]
    (d) Restrictions applicable to anchored gillnet gear--(1) Universal 
anchored gillnet gear requirements. In addition to the area-specific 
measures listed in paragraphs (d)(3) through (d)(8) of this section, all 
anchored gillnet gear in regulated waters must comply with the universal 
gear requirements listed below.\6\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \6\ Fishermen are also encouraged to maintain their buoy lines to be 
as knot-free as possible. Splices are considered to be less of an 
entanglement threat and are thus preferable to knots.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (i) No buoy line floating at the surface. No person or vessel may 
fish with anchored gillnet gear that has any portion of the buoy line 
floating at the surface at any time when the buoy line is directly 
connected to the gear at the ocean bottom. If more than one buoy is 
attached to a single buoy line or if a high flyer and a buoy are used 
together on a single buoy line, sinking and/or neutrally buoyant line 
must be used between these objects.
    (ii) No wet storage of gear. Anchored gillnet gear must be hauled 
out of the water at least once every 30 days.
    (iii) Groundlines. All groundlines must be composed entirely of 
sinking line unless exempted from this requirement under paragraph 
(a)(4) of this section. The attachment of buoys, toggles, or other 
floatation devices to groundlines is prohibited.
    (2) Area specific gear restrictions. No person or vessel may fish 
with or possess anchored gillnet gear in Areas referenced in paragraphs 
(d)(3) through (d)(8) of this section, unless that gear complies with 
the gear requirements specified in paragraph (d)(1) of this section, and 
the area specific requirements listed below, or unless the gear is 
stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (i) Buoy line weak links. All buoys, flotation devices and/or 
weights (except gillnets, anchors, and leadline woven into the buoy 
line), such as surface buoys, high flyers, sub-surface buoys, toggles, 
window weights, etc., must be attached to the buoy line with a weak link 
placed as close to each individual buoy, flotation device and/or weight 
as operationally feasible and that meets the following specifications:
    (A) The weak link must be chosen from the following list approved by 
NMFS: Swivels, plastic weak links, rope of appropriate breaking 
strength, hog rings, rope stapled to a buoy stick, or other materials or 
devices approved in writing by the Assistant Administrator. A brochure 
illustrating the techniques for making weak links is available from the 
Regional Administrator, NMFS, Greater Atlantic Region upon request.
    (B) The breaking strength of the weak links must not exceed 1,100 lb 
(499.0 kg).
    (C) Weak links must break cleanly leaving behind the bitter end of 
the line. The bitter end of the line must be free of any knots when the 
weak link breaks. Splices are not considered to be knots for the 
purposes of this provision.
    (ii) Net panel weak links. The breaking strength of each weak link 
must not exceed 1,100 lb (499.0 kg). The weak link requirements apply to 
all variations in panel size. All net panels in a string must contain 
weak links that meet one of the following two configurations unless 
exempted from this requirement under paragraph (a)(5) of this section:
    (A) Configuration 1. (1) The weak link must be chosen from the 
following list

[[Page 37]]

approved by NMFS: Plastic weak links or rope of appropriate breaking 
strength. If rope of appropriate breaking strength is used throughout 
the floatline or as the up and down line, or if no up and down line is 
present, then individual weak links are not required on the floatline or 
up and down line. A brochure illustrating the techniques for making weak 
links is available from the Regional Administrator, NMFS, Greater 
Atlantic Region upon request; and
    (2) One weak link must be placed in the center of each of the up and 
down lines at both ends of the net panel; and
    (3) One weak link must be placed as close as possible to each end of 
the net panels on the floatline; and
    (4) For net panels of 50 fathoms (300 ft or 91.4 m) or less in 
length, one weak link must be placed in the center of the floatline; or
    (5) For net panels greater than 50 fathoms (300 ft or 91.4 m) in 
length, one weak link must be placed at least every 25 fathoms (150 ft 
or 45.7 m) along the floatline.
    (B) Configuration 2. (1) The weak link must be chosen from the 
following list approved by NMFS: Plastic weak links or rope of 
appropriate breaking strength. If rope of appropriate breaking strength 
is used throughout the floatline or as the up and down line, or if no up 
and down line is present, then individual weak links are not required on 
the floatline or up and down line. A brochure illustrating the 
techniques for making weak links is available from the Regional 
Administrator, NMFS, Greater Atlantic Region upon request; and
    (2) One weak link must be placed in the center of each of the up and 
down lines at both ends of the net panel; and
    (3) One weak link must be placed between the floatline tie loops 
between net panels; and
    (4) One weak link must be placed where the floatline tie loops 
attaches to the bridle, buoy line, or groundline at the end of a net 
string; and
    (5) For net panels of 50 fathoms (300 ft or 91.4 m) or less in 
length, one weak link must be placed in the center of the floatline; or
    (6) For net panels greater than 50 fathoms (300 ft or 91.4 m) in 
length, one weak link must be placed at least every 25 fathoms (150 ft 
or 45.7 m) along the floatline.
    (iii) Anchoring systems. All anchored gillnets, regardless of the 
number of net panels, must be secured at each end of the net string with 
a burying anchor (an anchor that holds to the ocean bottom through the 
use of a fluke, spade, plow, or pick) having the holding capacity equal 
to or greater than a 22-lb (10.0-kg) Danforth-style anchor unless 
exempted from this requirement under paragraph (a)(5) of this section. 
Dead weights do not meet this requirement. A brochure illustrating the 
techniques for rigging anchoring systems is available from the Regional 
Administrator, NMFS, Greater Atlantic Region.
    (3) Cape Cod Bay Restricted Area--(i) Area. The Cape Cod Bay 
restricted area is bounded by the following points and on the south and 
east by the interior shoreline of Cape Cod, Massachusetts.

------------------------------------------------------------------------
            Point                    N. lat.              W. long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
CCB1........................  4146.8       7030
CCB2........................  4212         7030
CCB3........................  4212         7015
CCB4........................  4204.8       7010
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (ii) Closure. During January 1 through May 15 of each year, no 
person or vessel may fish with or possess anchored gillnet gear in the 
Cape Cod Bay Restricted Area unless the Assistant Administrator 
specifies gear restrictions or alternative fishing practices in 
accordance with paragraph (i) of this section and the gear or practices 
comply with those specifications, or unless the gear is stowed as 
specified in Sec. 229.2. The Assistant Administrator may waive this 
closure for the remaining portion of the winter restricted period in any 
year through a notification in the Federal Register if NMFS determines 
that right whales have left the restricted area and are unlikely to 
return for the remainder of the season.
    (iii) Area-specific gear or vessel requirements. From May 16 through 
December 31 of each year, no person or vessel may fish with or possess 
anchored gillnet gear in the Cape Cod Bay Restricted Area unless that 
gear complies with the gear marking requirements specified in paragraph 
(b) of this section, the universal anchored gillnet

[[Page 38]]

gear requirements specified in paragraph (d)(1) of this section, and the 
area-specific requirements listed in paragraph (d)(2) of this section, 
or unless the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (4) Great South Channel Restricted Gillnet Area--(i) Area. The Great 
South Channel Restricted Gillnet Area consists of the area bounded by 
lines connecting the following four points:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
             Point                     N. lat.             W. long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
GSC1...........................  4102.2      6902
GSC2...........................  4143.5      6936.3
GSC3...........................  4210        6831
GSC4...........................  4138        6813
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (ii) Closure. From April 1 through June 30 of each year, no person 
or vessel may fish with or possess anchored gillnet gear in the Great 
South Channel Restricted Gillnet Area unless the Assistant Administrator 
specifies gear restrictions or alternative fishing practices in 
accordance with paragraph (i) of this section and the gear or practices 
comply with those specifications, or unless the gear is stowed as 
specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (iii) Area-specific gear or vessel requirements. From July 1 through 
March 31 of each year, no person or vessel may fish with or possess 
anchored gillnet gear in the Great South Channel Restricted Gillnet Area 
unless that gear complies with the gear marking requirements specified 
in paragraph (b) of this section, the universal anchored gillnet gear 
requirements specified in paragraph (d)(1) of this section, and the 
area-specific requirements listed in paragraph (d)(2) of this section or 
unless the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (5) Great South Channel Sliver Restricted Area--(i) Area. The Great 
South Channel Sliver Restricted Area consists of the area bounded by 
lines connecting the following points:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
             Point                     N. lat.             W. long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
GSCRA1.........................  4102.2      6902
GSCRA2.........................  4143.5      6936.3
GSCRA3.........................  4140        6945
GSCRA4.........................  4100        6905
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (ii) Year-round area-specific gear or vessel requirements. No person 
or vessel may fish with or possess anchored gillnet gear in the Great 
South Channel Sliver Restricted Area unless that gear complies with the 
gear marking requirements specified in paragraph (b) of this section, 
the universal anchored gillnet gear requirements specified in paragraph 
(d)(1) of this section, and the area-specific requirements listed in 
paragraph (d)(2) of this section or unless the gear is stowed as 
specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (6) Stellwagen Bank/Jeffreys Ledge Restricted Area--(i) Area. The 
Stellwagen Bank/Jeffreys Ledge Restricted Area includes all Federal 
waters of the Gulf of Maine, except those designated as the Cape Cod Bay 
Restricted Area in paragraph (d)(3) of this section that lie south of 
4315 N. lat. and west of 7000 W. long.
    (ii) Year-round area-specific gear or vessel requirements. No person 
or vessel may fish with or possess anchored gillnet gear in the 
Stellwagen Bank/Jeffreys Ledge Restricted Area unless that gear complies 
with the gear marking requirements specified in paragraph (b) of this 
section, the universal anchored gillnet gear requirements specified in 
paragraph (d)(1) of this section, and the area-specific requirements 
listed in paragraph (d)(2) of this section or unless the gear is stowed 
as specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (7) Other Northeast Gillnet Waters Area--(i) Area. The Other 
Northeast Gillnet Waters Area consists of all state and Federal U.S. 
waters from the U.S./Canada border to Long Island, NY, at 7230 
W. long. south to 3633.03 N. lat. and east to the eastern edge 
of the EEZ, with the exception of the Cape Cod Bay Restricted Area, 
Stellwagen Bank/Jeffreys Ledge Restricted Area, Great South Channel 
Restricted Gillnet Area, Great South Channel Sliver Restricted Area, and 
exempted waters listed in paragraph (a)(3) of this section.
    (ii) Year-round area-specific gear or vessel requirements. No person 
or vessel may fish with or possess anchored gillnet gear in the Other 
Northeast Gillnet Waters Area that overlaps an area from the U.S./Canada 
border south to a straight line from 4118.2 N. lat., 
7151.5 W. long. (Watch Hill Point, RI) south to 4000 
N. lat. and then east to the eastern edge of the EEZ, unless

[[Page 39]]

that gear complies with the gear marking requirements specified in 
paragraph (b) of this section, the universal anchored gillnet gear 
requirements specified in paragraph (d)(1) of this section, and the 
area-specific requirements listed in paragraph (d)(2) of this section or 
unless the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (iii) Seasonal area-specific gear or vessel requirements. From 
September 1 to May 31, no person or vessel may fish with or possess 
anchored gillnet gear in the Other Northeast Gillnet Waters Area that is 
south of a straight line from 4118.2 N. lat., 71 
51.5 W. long. (Watch Hill Point, RI) south to 4000 
N. lat. and then east to the eastern edge of the EEZ, unless that gear 
complies with the gear marking requirements specified in paragraph (b) 
of this section, the universal anchored gillnet gear requirements 
specified in paragraph (d)(1) of this section, and the area-specific 
requirements listed in paragraph (d)(2) of this section or unless the 
gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (8) Mid/South Atlantic Gillnet Waters--(i) Area. The Mid/South 
Atlantic Gillnet Waters consists of all U.S. waters bounded on the north 
from Long Island, NY, at 7230 W. long. south to 
3633.03 N. lat. and east to the eastern edge of the EEZ, and 
bounded on the south by 3200 N. lat., and east to the eastern 
edge of the EEZ. When the Mid/South Atlantic Gillnet Waters Area 
overlaps the Southeast U.S. Restricted Area and its restricted period as 
specified in paragraphs (f)(1) and (f)(2) of this section, then the 
closure and exemption for the Southeast U.S. Restricted Area as 
specified in paragraph (f)(2) of this section applies.
    (ii) Area-specific gear or vessel requirements. From September 1 
through May 31, no person or vessel may fish with or possess anchored 
gillnet gear in the Mid/South Atlantic Gillnet Waters unless that gear 
complies with the gear marking requirements specified in paragraph (b) 
of this section, the universal anchored gillnet gear requirements 
specified in paragraph (d)(1) of this section, and the following area-
specific requirements, or unless the gear is stowed as specified in 
Sec. 229.2. When the Mid/South Atlantic Gillnet Waters Area overlaps the 
Southeast U.S. Restricted Area and its restricted period as specified in 
paragraphs (f)(1) and (f)(2) of this section, then the closure and 
exemption for the Southeast U.S. Restricted Area as specified in 
paragraph (f)(2) of this section applies.
    (A) Buoy line weak links. All buoys, flotation devices and/or 
weights (except gillnets, anchors, and leadline woven into the buoy 
line), such as surface buoys, high flyers, sub-surface buoys, toggles, 
window weights, etc., must be attached to the buoy line with a weak link 
placed as close to each individual buoy, flotation device and/or weight 
as operationally feasible and that meets the following specifications:
    (1) The weak link must be chosen from the following list approved by 
NMFS: Swivels, plastic weak links, rope of appropriate breaking 
strength, hog rings, rope stapled to a buoy stick, or other materials or 
devices approved in writing by the Assistant Administrator. A brochure 
illustrating the techniques for making weak links is available from the 
Regional Administrator, NMFS, Greater Atlantic Region upon request.
    (2) The breaking strength of the weak links must not exceed 1,100 lb 
(499.0 kg).
    (3) Weak links must break cleanly leaving behind the bitter end of 
the line. The bitter end of the line must be free of any knots when the 
weak link breaks. Splices are not considered to be knots for the 
purposes of this provision.
    (B) Net panel weak links. The weak link requirements apply to all 
variations in panel size. All net panels must contain weak links that 
meet the following specifications unless exempted under paragraph (a)(5) 
of this section:
    (1) The breaking strength for each of the weak links must not exceed 
1,100 lb (499.0 kg).
    (2) The weak link must be chosen from the following list approved by 
NMFS: Plastic weak links or rope of appropriate breaking strength. If 
rope of appropriate breaking strength is used throughout the floatline 
then individual weak links are not required. A brochure illustrating the 
techniques

[[Page 40]]

for making weak links is available from the Regional Administrator, 
NMFS, Greater Atlantic Region upon request.
    (3) Weak links must be placed in the center of the floatline of each 
gillnet net panel up to and including 50 fathoms (300 ft or 91.4 m) in 
length, or at least every 25 fathoms (150 ft or 45.7 m) along the 
floatline for longer panels.
    (C) Additional anchoring system and net panel weak link 
requirements. All gillnets must return to port with the vessel unless 
the gear meets the following specifications:
    (1) Anchoring systems. All anchored gillnets, regardless of the 
number of net panels, must be secured at each end of the net string with 
a burying anchor (an anchor that holds to the ocean bottom through the 
use of a fluke, spade, plow, or pick) having the holding capacity equal 
to or greater than a 22-lb (10.0-kg) Danforth-style anchor unless 
exempted under paragraph (a)(5) of this section. Dead weights do not 
meet this requirement. A brochure illustrating the techniques for 
rigging anchoring systems is available from the Regional Administrator, 
NMFS, Greater Atlantic Region upon request.
    (2) Net panel weak links. Net panel weak links must meet the 
specifications in this paragraph. The breaking strength of each weak 
link must not exceed 1,100 lb (499.0 kg). The weak link requirements 
apply to all variations in panel size. All net panels in a string must 
contain weak links that meet one of the following two configurations 
found in paragraph (d)(2)(ii)(A) or (d)(2)(ii)(B) of this section.
    (3) Additional provision for North Carolina. All gillnets set 300 
yards (274.3 m) or less from the shoreline in North Carolina must meet 
the anchoring system and net panel weak link requirements in paragraphs 
(d)(8)(ii)(C)(1) and (d)(8)(ii)(C)(2) of this section, or the following:
    (i) The entire net string must be less than 300 yards (274.3 m) from 
shore.
    (ii) The breaking strength of each weak link must not exceed 600 lb 
(272.2 kg). The weak link requirements apply to all variations in panel 
size.
    (iii) All net panels in a string must contain weak links that meet 
one of the following two configuration specifications found in paragraph 
(d)(2)(ii)(A) or (d)(2)(ii)(B) of this section.
    (iv) Regardless of the number of net panels, all anchored gillnets 
must be secured at the offshore end of the net string with a burying 
anchor (an anchor that holds to the ocean bottom through the use of a 
fluke, spade, plow, or pick) having a holding capacity equal to or 
greater than an 8-lb (3.6-kg) Danforth-style anchor, and at the inshore 
end of the net string with a dead weight equal to or greater than 31 lb 
(14.1 kg).
    (e) Restrictions applicable to drift gillnet gear--(1) Cape Cod Bay 
Restricted Area--(i) Area. The Cape Cod Bay Restricted Area is bounded 
by the following points and on the south and east by the interior 
shoreline of Cape Cod, Massachusetts.

------------------------------------------------------------------------
            Point                    N. lat.              W. long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
CCB1........................  4146.8       7030
CCB2........................  4212         7030
CCB3........................  4212         7015
CCB4........................  4204.8       7010
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (ii) Closure. From January 1 through April 30 of each year, no 
person or vessel may fish with or possess drift gillnet gear in the Cape 
Cod Bay Restricted Area unless the Assistant Administrator specifies 
gear restrictions or alternative fishing practices in accordance with 
paragraph (e)(1)(i) of this section and the gear or practices comply 
with those specifications, or unless the gear is stowed as specified in 
Sec. 229.2. The Assistant Administrator may waive this closure for the 
remaining portion of the winter restricted period in any year through a 
notification in the Federal Register if NMFS determines that right 
whales have left the restricted area and are unlikely to return for the 
remainder of the season.
    (iii) Area-specific gear or vessel requirements. From May 1 through 
December 31 of each year, no person or vessel may fish with or possess 
drift gillnet gear in the Cape Cod Bay Restricted Area unless that gear 
complies with the gear marking requirements specified in paragraph (b) 
of this section, or unless the gear is stowed as specified in 
Sec. 229.2. Additionally, no person or vessel may fish with or possess 
drift gillnet

[[Page 41]]

gear at night in the Cape Cod Bay Restricted Area unless that gear is 
tended, or unless the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2. During 
that time, all drift gillnet gear set by that vessel in the Cape Cod Bay 
Restricted Area must be removed from the water and stowed on board the 
vessel before a vessel returns to port.
    (2) Great South Channel Restricted Gillnet Area--(i) Area. The Great 
South Channel Restricted Gillnet Area consists of the area bounded by 
lines connecting the following four points:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
             Point                     N. Lat.             W. Long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
GSC1...........................  4102.2      6902
GSC2...........................  4143.5      6936.3
GSC3...........................  4210        6831
GSC4...........................  4138        6813
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (ii) Closure. From April 1 through June 30 of each year, no person 
or vessel may set, fish with or possess drift gillnet gear in the Great 
South Channel Restricted Gillnet Area unless the Assistant Administrator 
specifies gear restrictions or alternative fishing practices in 
accordance with paragraph (i) of this section and the gear or practices 
comply with those specifications, or unless the gear is stowed as 
specified in Sec. 229.2.
    (iii) Area-specific gear or vessel requirements. From July 1 through 
March 31 of each year, no person or vessel may fish with or possess 
drift gillnet gear in the Great South Channel Restricted Gillnet Area 
unless that gear complies with the gear marking requirements specified 
in paragraph (b) of this section, or unless the gear is stowed as 
specified in Sec. 229.2. Additionally, no person or vessel may fish with 
or possess drift gillnet gear at night in the Great South Channel 
Restricted Gillnet Area unless that gear is tended, or unless the gear 
is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2. During that time, all drift 
gillnet gear set by that vessel in the Great South Channel Restricted 
Gillnet Area must be removed from the water and stowed on board the 
vessel before a vessel returns to port.
    (3) Great South Channel Sliver Restricted Area--(i) Area. The Great 
South Channel Sliver Restricted Area consists of the area bounded by 
lines connecting the following points:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
             Point                     N. lat.             W. long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
GSCRA1.........................  4102.2      6902
GSCRA2.........................  4143.5      6936.3
GSCRA3.........................  4140        6945
GSCRA4.........................  4100        6905
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (ii) Year-round area-specific gear or vessel requirements. No person 
or vessel may fish with or possess drift gillnet gear in the Great South 
Channel Sliver Restricted Gillnet Area unless that gear complies with 
the gear marking requirements specified in paragraph (b) of this 
section, or unless the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2. 
Additionally, no person or vessel may fish with or possess drift gillnet 
gear at night in the Great South Channel Sliver Restricted Area unless 
that gear is tended, or unless the gear is stowed as specified in 
Sec. 229.2. During that time, all drift gillnet gear set by that vessel 
in the Great South Channel Sliver Restricted Area must be removed from 
the water and stowed on board the vessel before a vessel returns to 
port.
    (4) Stellwagen Bank/Jeffreys Ledge Restricted Area--(i) Area. The 
Stellwagen Bank/Jeffreys Ledge Restricted Area includes all Federal 
waters of the Gulf of Maine, except those designated the Cape Cod Bay 
Restricted Area in paragraph (e)(1), that lie south of 4315 N. 
lat. and west of 7000 W. long.
    (ii) Year-round area-specific gear or vessel requirements. No person 
or vessel may fish with or possess drift gillnet gear in the Stellwagen 
Bank/Jeffreys Ledge Restricted Area unless that gear complies with the 
gear marking requirements specified in paragraph (b) of this section, or 
unless the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2. Additionally, no 
person or vessel may fish with or possess drift gillnet gear at night in 
the Stellwagen Bank/Jeffreys Ledge Area unless that gear is tended, or 
unless the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2. During that time, 
all drift gillnet gear set by that vessel in the Stellwagen Bank/
Jeffreys Ledge Restricted Area must be removed from the water and stowed 
on board the vessel before a vessel returns to port.
    (5) Other Northeast Gillnet Waters Area--(i) Area. The Other 
Northeast Gillnet Waters Area consists of all state and Federal U.S. 
waters from the U.S./Canada border to Long Island, NY,

[[Page 42]]

at 7230 W. long. south to 3633.03 N. lat. and east 
to the eastern edge of the EEZ, with the exception of the Cape Cod Bay 
Restricted Area, Stellwagen Bank/Jeffreys Ledge Restricted Area, Great 
South Channel Restricted Gillnet Area, Great South Channel Sliver 
Restricted Area, and exempted waters listed in paragraph (a)(3) of this 
section.
    (ii) Year-round area-specific gear or vessel requirements. No person 
or vessel may fish with or possess drift gillnet gear in the Other 
Northeast Gillnet Waters Area unless that gear complies with the gear 
marking requirements specified in paragraph (b) of this section, or 
unless the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2. Additionally, no 
person or vessel may fish with or possess drift gillnet gear at night in 
the Other Northeast Gillnet Waters Area unless that gear is tended, or 
unless the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2. During that time, 
all drift gillnet gear set by that vessel in the Other Northeast Gillnet 
Waters Area must be removed from the water and stowed on board the 
vessel before a vessel returns to port.
    (iii) Seasonal area-specific gear or vessel requirements. From 
September 1 to May 31, no person or vessel may fish with or possess 
drift gillnet gear in the Other Northeast Gillnet Waters Area that is 
south of a straight line from 4118.2 N. lat., 7151.5 
W. long. (Watch Hill Point, RI) south to 4000 N. lat. and then 
east to the eastern edge of the EEZ, unless that gear complies with the 
gear marking requirements specified in paragraph (b) of this section, or 
unless the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2. Additionally, no 
person or vessel may fish with or possess drift gillnet gear at night in 
the Other Northeast Gillnet Waters Area unless that gear is tended, or 
unless the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2. During that time, 
all drift gillnet gear set by that vessel in the Other Northeast Gillnet 
Waters Area must be removed from the water and stowed on board the 
vessel before a vessel returns to port.
    (6) Mid/South Atlantic Gillnet Waters Area--(i) Area. The Mid/South 
Atlantic Gillnet Waters consists of all U.S. waters bounded on the north 
from Long Island, NY at 7230 W. long. south to 
3633.03 N. lat. and east to the eastern edge of the EEZ, and 
bounded on the south by 3200 N. lat., and east to the eastern 
edge of the EEZ. When the Mid/South Atlantic Gillnet Waters Area 
overlaps the Southeast U.S. Restricted Area and its restricted period as 
specified in paragraphs (f)(1) and (f)(2) of this section, then the 
closure and exemption for the Southeast U.S. Restricted Area as 
specified in paragraph (f)(2) of this section applies.
    (ii) Area-specific gear or vessel requirements. From September 1 
through May 31, no person or vessel may fish with or possess drift 
gillnet gear at night in the Mid/South Atlantic Gillnet Waters Area 
unless:
    (A) The gear complies with gear marking requirements specified in 
paragraph (b) of this section;
    (B) The gear is tended; and
    (C) All gear is removed from the water and stowed on board the 
vessel before a vessel returns to port. No person or vessel may possess 
drift gillnet at night in the Mid/South Atlantic Gillnet Waters unless 
the gear is stowed as specified in Sec. 229.2. When the Mid/South 
Atlantic Gillnet Waters Area overlaps the Southeast U.S. Restricted Area 
and its restricted period as specified in paragraphs (f)(1) and (f)(2) 
of this section, then the closure and exemption for the Southeast U.S. 
Restricted Area as specified in paragraph (f)(2) of this section 
applies.
    (f) Restrictions applicable to the Southeast U.S. Restricted Area--
(1) Area. The Southeast U.S. Restricted Area consists of the area 
bounded by straight lines connecting the following points in the order 
stated from south to north:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
             Point                     N. lat.             W. long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
SERA1..........................  2751        (\1\)
SERA2..........................  2751        8000
SERA3..........................  3200        8000
SERA4..........................  3236        7852
SERA5..........................  3251        7836
SERA6..........................  3315        7824
SERA7..........................  3327        7804
SERA8..........................  (\2\)                7833.9
------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Florida shoreline.
\2\ South Carolina shoreline.

    (i) Southeast U.S. Restricted Area N. The Southeast U.S. Restricted 
Area N consists of the Southeast U.S. Restricted Area from 
2900 N. lat. northward.

[[Page 43]]

    (ii) Southeast U.S. Restricted Area S. The Southeast U.S. Restricted 
Area S consists of the Southeast U.S. Restricted Area southward of 
2900 N. lat.
    (2) Restricted periods, closure, and exemptions--(i) Restricted 
periods. The restricted period for the Southeast U.S. Restricted Area N 
is from November 15 through April 15, and the restricted period for the 
Southeast U.S. Restricted Area S is from December 1 through March 31.
    (ii) Closure for gillnets. (A) Except as provided under paragraph 
(f)(2)(v) of this section, fishing with or possessing gillnet in the 
Southeast U.S. Restricted Area N during the restricted period is 
prohibited.
    (B) Except as provided under paragraph (f)(2)(iii) of this section 
and (f)(2)(iv) of this section, fishing with gillnet in the Southeast 
U.S. Restricted Area S during the restricted period is prohibited.
    (iii) Exemption for Southeastern U.S. Atlantic shark gillnet 
fishery. Fishing with gillnet for sharks with webbing of 5 inches (12.7 
cm) or greater stretched mesh is exempt from the restrictions under 
paragraph (f)(2)(ii)(B) of this section if:
    (A) The gillnet is deployed so that it encloses an area of water;
    (B) A valid commercial directed shark limited access permit has been 
issued to the vessel in accordance with 50 CFR Sec. 635.4(e) and is on 
board;
    (C) No net is set at night or when visibility is less than 500 yards 
(1,500 ft, 460 m);
    (D) The gillnet is removed from the water before night or 
immediately if visibility decreases below 500 yards (1,500 ft, 460 m);
    (E) Each set is made under the observation of a spotter plane;
    (F) No gillnet is set within 3 nautical miles (5.6 km) of a right, 
humpback, or fin whale;
    (G) The gillnet is removed immediately from the water if a right, 
humpback, or fin whale moves within 3 nautical miles (5.6 km) of the set 
gear;
    (H) The gear complies with the gear marking requirements specified 
in paragraph (b) of this section; and
    (I) The operator of the vessel calls the Southeast Fisheries Science 
Center Panama City Laboratory in Panama City, FL, not less than 48 hours 
prior to departing on any fishing trip in order to arrange for observer 
coverage. If the Panama City Laboratory requests that an observer be 
taken on board a vessel during a fishing trip at any time from December 
1 through March 31 south of 2900 N. lat., no person may fish 
with such gillnet aboard that vessel in the Southeast U.S. Restricted 
Area S unless an observer is on board that vessel during the trip.
    (iv) Exemption for Spanish Mackerel component of the Southeast 
Atlantic gillnet fishery. Fishing with gillnet for Spanish mackerel is 
exempt from the restrictions under paragraph (f)(2)(ii)(B) of this 
section from December 1 through December 31, and from March 1 through 
March 31 if:
    (A) Gillnet mesh size is between 3.5 inches (8.9 cm) and 4\7/8\ 
inches (12.4 cm) stretched mesh;
    (B) A valid commercial vessel permit for Spanish mackerel has been 
issued to the vessel in accordance with Sec. 622.4(a)(2)(iv) of this 
title and is on board;
    (C) No person may fish with, set, place in the water, or have on 
board a vessel a gillnet with a float line longer than 800 yards (2,400 
ft, 732 m);
    (D) No person may fish with, set, or place in the water more than 
one gillnet at any time;
    (E) No more than two gillnets, including any net in use, may be 
possessed at any one time; provided, however, that if two gillnets, 
including any net in use, are possessed at any one time, they must have 
stretched mesh sizes (as allowed under the regulations) that differ by 
at least .25 inch (.64 cm);
    (F) No person may soak a gillnet for more than 1 hour. The soak 
period begins when the first mesh is placed in the water and ends either 
when the first mesh is retrieved back on board the vessel or the 
gathering of the gillnet is begun to facilitate retrieval on board the 
vessel, whichever occurs first; providing that, once the first mesh is 
retrieved or the gathering is begun, the retrieval is continuous until 
the gillnet is completely removed from the water;
    (G) No net is set at night or when visibility is less than 500 yards 
(1,500 ft, 460 m);

[[Page 44]]

    (H) The gillnet is removed from the water before night or 
immediately if visibility decreases below 500 yards (1,500 ft, 460 m);
    (I) No net is set within 3 nautical miles (5.6 km) of a right, 
humpback, or fin whale;
    (J) The gillnet is removed immediately from the water if a right, 
humpback, or fin whale moves within 3 nautical miles (5.6 km) of the set 
gear; and
    (K) The gear complies with the gear marking requirements specified 
in paragraph (b) of this section, the universal anchored gillnet gear 
requirements specified in paragraph (d)(1) of this section, and the 
area-specific requirements for anchored gillnets specified in paragraphs 
(d)(8)(ii)(A) through (d)(8)(ii)(D) of this section for the Mid/South 
Atlantic Gillnet Waters.
    (v) Exemption for vessels in transit with gillnet aboard. Possession 
of gillnet aboard a vessel in transit is exempt from the restrictions 
under paragraph (f)(2)(ii)(A) of this section if: All nets are covered 
with canvas or other similar material and lashed or otherwise securely 
fastened to the deck, rail, or drum; and all buoys, high flyers, and 
anchors are disconnected from all gillnets. No fish may be possessed 
aboard such a vessel in transit.
    (vi) Restrictions for trap/pot gear. Fishing with trap/pot gear in 
the Southeast U.S. Restricted Area N during the restricted period is 
allowed if:
    (A) Trap/pot gear is not fished in a trap/pot trawl;
    (B) All buoys or flotation devices are attached to the buoy line 
with a weak link that meets the requirements of paragraph (c)(2)(ii) of 
this section. The weak link has a maximum breaking strength of 600 lbs 
(272 kg) except in Florida State waters where the maximum breaking 
strength is 200 lbs (91kg);
    (C) The buoy line has a maximum breaking strength of 2,200 lbs (998 
kg) except in Florida State waters where the maximum breaking strength 
is 1,500 lbs (630 kg);
    (D) The entire buoy line must be free of objects (e.g., weights, 
floats, etc.) except where it attaches to the buoy and trap/pot;
    (E) The buoy line is made of sinking line;
    (F) The gear complies with gear marking requirements as specified in 
paragraph (b) of this section; and
    (G) Trap/pot gear that is deployed in the EEZ (as defined in 
Sec. 600.10 of this title) is brought back to port at the conclusion of 
each fishing trip.
    (g) Restrictions applicable to the Other Southeast Gillnet Waters--
(1) Area. The Other Southeast Gillnet Waters Area includes all waters 
bounded by 3200 N. lat. on the north (near Savannah, GA), 
2646.50 N. lat. on the south (near West Palm Beach, FL), 
8000 W. long. on the west, and the EEZ boundary on the east.
    (2) Closure for gillnets. Fishing with or possessing gillnet gear in 
the Other Southeast Gillnet Waters Area north of 2900 N. lat. 
from November 15 through April 15 or south of 2900 N. lat. 
from December 1 through March 31 is allowed if one of the following 
exemptions applies:
    (i) Exemption for Southeastern U.S. Atlantic shark gillnet fishery. 
Fishing with or possessing gillnet gear with webbing of 5 inches (12.7 
cm) or greater stretched mesh is allowed if:
    (A) The gear is marked as required in paragraph (b) of this section.
    (B) No net is set within 3 nautical miles (5.6 km) of a right, 
humpback, or fin whale; and
    (C) The gear is removed immediately from the water if a right, 
humpback, or fin whale moves within 3 nautical miles (5.6 km) of the set 
gear.
    (ii) Exemption for Southeast Atlantic gillnet fishery. Fishing with 
or possessing gillnet gear is allowed if:
    (A) The gear is marked as required in paragraph (b) of this section; 
or
    (B) The gear is fished south of 2751 N.
    (iii) Exemption for vessels in transit with gillnet aboard. 
Possession of gillnet gear aboard a vessel in transit is allowed if:
    (A) All nets are covered with canvas or other similar material and 
securely fastened to the deck, rail, or drum; and
    (B) All buoys, high flyers, and anchors are disconnected from all 
gillnets.
    (h) Restrictions applicable to the Southeast U.S. Monitoring Area--
(1) Area. The

[[Page 45]]

Southeast U.S. Monitoring Area consists of the area from 2751 
N. lat. (near Sebastian Inlet, FL) south to 2646.50 N. lat. 
(near West Palm Beach, FL), extending from the shoreline or exemption 
line out to 8000 W. long.
    (2) Restrictions for Southeastern U.S. Atlantic shark gillnet 
fishery. Fishing with or possessing gillnet gear with webbing of 5 
inches (12.7 cm) or greater stretched mesh from December 1 through March 
31 is allowed if:
    (i) The gear complies with the gear marking requirements specified 
in paragraph (b) of this section;
    (ii) The vessel owner/operator is in compliance with the vessel 
monitoring system (VMS) requirements found in 50 CFR 635.69; and
    (iii) The vessel owner/operator and crew are in compliance with 
observer requirements found in Sec. 229.7.
    (3) Restrictions for Southeastern U.S. Atlantic shark gillnet 
fishery vessels in transit. Possession of gillnet gear with webbing of 5 
inches (12.7 cm) or greater stretched mesh aboard a vessel in transit 
from December 1 through March 31 is allowed if:
    (i) All gear is stowed as specified in 50 CFR 229.2; and
    (ii) The vessel owner/operator is in compliance with the vessel 
monitoring system (VMS) requirements found in 50 CFR 635.69.
    (i) Other provisions. In addition to any other emergency authority 
under the Marine Mammal Protection Act, the Endangered Species Act, the 
Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, or other 
appropriate authority, the Assistant Administrator may take action under 
this section in the following situations:
    (1) Entanglements in critical habitat or restricted areas. If a 
serious injury or mortality of a right whale occurs in the Cape Cod Bay 
Restricted Area from January 1 through May 15, in the Great South 
Channel Restricted Area from April 1 through June 30, the Southeast U.S. 
Restricted Area N from November 15 to April 15, or the Southeast U.S. 
Restricted Area S from December 1 through March 31 as the result of an 
entanglement by trap/pot or gillnet gear allowed to be used in those 
areas and times, the Assistant Administrator shall close that area to 
that gear type (i.e., trap/pot or gillnet) for the rest of that time 
period and for that same time period in each subsequent year, unless the 
Assistant Administrator revises the restricted period in accordance with 
paragraph (i)(2) of this section or unless other measures are 
implemented under paragraph (i)(2) of this section.
    (2) Other special measures. The Assistant Administrator may, in 
consultation with the Take Reduction Team, revise the requirements of 
this section through a publication in the Federal Register if:
    (i) NMFS verifies that certain gear characteristics are both 
operationally effective and reduce serious injuries and mortalities of 
endangered whales;
    (ii) New gear technology is developed and determined to be 
appropriate;
    (iii) Revised breaking strengths are determined to be appropriate;
    (iv) New marking systems are developed and determined to be 
appropriate;
    (v) NMFS determines that right whales are remaining longer than 
expected in a closed area or have left earlier than expected;
    (vi) NMFS determines that the boundaries of a closed area are not 
appropriate;
    (vii) Gear testing operations are considered appropriate; or
    (viii) Similar situations occur.

[79 FR 36610, June 27, 2014; 79 FR 49718, Aug. 22, 2014, as amended at 
79 FR 73852, Dec. 12, 2014; 80 FR 30375, May 28, 2015]



Sec. 229.33  Harbor Porpoise Take Reduction Plan Regulations--New England.

    (a) Restrictions--(1) Northeast Closure Area--(i) Area restrictions. 
From August 15 through September 13, it is prohibited to fish with, set, 
haul back, possess on board a vessel unless stowed in accordance with 
Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove sink gillnet gear or gillnet gear capable 
of catching multispecies from the Northeast Closure Area. This 
restriction does not apply to vessels fishing with a single pelagic 
gillnet (as described and used as set forth in Sec. 648.81(f)(2)(ii) of 
this title).
    (ii) Area boundaries. The Northeast Closure Area is bounded by 
straight lines connecting the following points in the order stated:

[[Page 46]]



                         Northeast Closure Area
------------------------------------------------------------------------
             Point                     N. Lat.             W. Long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
NE1............................  4427.3...  6855.0 (ME
                                                      shoreline)
NE2............................  4329.6...  6855.0
NE3............................  4404.4...  6748.7
NE4............................  4406.9...  6752.8
NE5............................  4431.2...  6702.7
NE6............................  4445.8...  6702.7 (ME
                                                      shoreline)
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (2) Mid-Coast Management Area--(i) Area restrictions. From September 
15 through May 31, it is prohibited to fish with, set, haul back, 
possess on board a vessel unless stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2, 
or fail to remove sink gillnet gear or gillnet gear capable of catching 
multispecies from the Mid-Coast Management Area, unless the gillnet gear 
is equipped with pingers in accordance with paragraphs (b) and (c) of 
this section. This prohibition does not apply to vessels fishing with a 
single pelagic gillnet (as described and used as set forth in 
Sec. 648.81(f)(2)(ii) of this title).
    (ii) Area boundaries. The Mid-Coast Management Area is the area 
bounded by straight lines connecting the following points in the order 
stated:

                        Mid-Coast Management Area
------------------------------------------------------------------------
             Point                     N. Lat.             W. Long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
MC1............................  4230.0...  7050.1 (MA
                                                      shoreline)
MC2............................  4230.0...  7015.0
MC3............................  4240.0...  7015.0
MC4............................  4240.0...  7000.0
MC5............................  4300.0...  7000.0
MC6............................  4300.0...  6930.0
MC7............................  4330.0...  6930.0
MC8............................  4330.0...  6900.0
MC9............................  4417.8...  6900.0 (ME
                                                      shoreline)
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (3) Massachusetts Bay Management Area--(i) Area restrictions. From 
November 1 through February 28/29 and from April 1 through May 31, it is 
prohibited to fish with, set, haul back, possess on board a vessel 
unless stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove sink 
gillnet gear or gillnet gear capable of catching multispecies from the 
Massachusetts Bay Management Area, unless the gillnet gear is equipped 
with pingers in accordance with paragraphs (b) and (c) of this section. 
From March 1 through March 31, it is prohibited to fish with, set, haul 
back, possess on board a vessel unless stowed in accordance with 
Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove sink gillnet gear or gillnet gear capable 
of catching multispecies from the Massachusetts Bay Management Area. 
These restrictions do not apply to vessels fishing with a single pelagic 
gillnet (as described in Sec. 648.81(f)(2)(ii) of this title).
    (ii) Area boundaries. The Massachusetts Bay Management Area is 
bounded by straight lines connecting the following points in the order 
stated:

                    Massachusetts Bay Management Area
------------------------------------------------------------------------
             Point                     N. Lat.             W. Long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
MB1............................  4230.0...  7050.1 (MA
                                                      shoreline)
MB2............................  4230.0...  7030.0
MB3............................  4215.0...  7030.0
MB4............................  4215.0...  7000.0
MB5............................  4200.0...  7000.0
MB6............................  4200.0...  7001.2 (MA
                                                      shoreline)
MB7............................  4200.0...  7004.8 (MA
                                                      shoreline)
MB8............................  4200.0...  7042.2 (MA
                                                      shoreline)
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (4) Stellwagen Bank Management Area--(i) Area restrictions. From 
November 1 through May 31, it is prohibited to fish with, set, haul 
back, possess on board a vessel unless stowed in accordance with 
Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove sink gillnet gear or gillnet gear capable 
of catching multispecies from the Stellwagen Bank Management Area, 
unless the gillnet gear is equipped with pingers in accordance with 
paragraphs (b) and (c) of this section. This restriction does not apply 
to vessels fishing with a single pelagic gillnet (as described in 
Sec. 648.81(f)(2)(ii) of this title).
    (ii) Area boundaries. The Stellwagen Bank Management Area is bounded 
by straight lines connecting the following points in the order stated:

                     Stellwagen Bank Management Area
------------------------------------------------------------------------
             Point                     N. Lat.             W. Long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
SB1............................  4230.0...  7030.0
SB2............................  4230.0...  7015.0
SB3............................  4215.0...  7015.0
SB4............................  4215.0...  7030.0
SB1............................  4230.0...  7030.0
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (5) Southern New England Management Area--(i) Area restrictions. 
From December 1 through May 31, it is prohibited to fish with, set, haul 
back, possess on

[[Page 47]]

board a vessel unless stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2, or fail to 
remove sink gillnet gear or gillnet gear capable of catching 
multispecies from the Southern New England Management Area, unless the 
gillnet gear is equipped with pingers in accordance with paragraphs (b) 
and (c) of this section. This prohibition does not apply to vessels 
fishing with a single pelagic gillnet (as described in 
Sec. 648.81(f)(2)(ii) of this title).
    (ii) Area boundaries. The Southern New England Management Area is 
bounded by straight lines connecting the following points in the order 
stated:

                  Southern New England Management Area
------------------------------------------------------------------------
             Point                     N. Lat.             W. Long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
SNE1...........................  Western boundary as specified \1\.
SNE2...........................  4000.0...  7230.0
SNE3...........................  4000.0...  6930.0
SNE4...........................  4215.0...  6930.0
SNE5...........................  4215.0...  7000.0
SNE6...........................  4158.3...  7000.0 (MA
                                                      shoreline)
------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Bounded on the west by a line running from the Rhode Island
  shoreline at 4118.2 N. lat. and 7151.5 W. long.
  (Watch Hill, RI), southwesterly through Fishers Island, NY, to Race
  Point, Fishers Island, NY; and from Race Point, Fishers Island, NY;
  southeasterly to the intersection of the 3-nautical mile line east of
  Montauk Point; southwesterly along the 3-nautical mile line to the
  intersection of 7230.0 W. long.

    (6) Cape Cod South Closure Area--(i) Area restrictions. From March 1 
through March 31, it is prohibited to fish with, set, haul back, possess 
on board a vessel unless stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2, or fail 
to remove sink gillnet gear or gillnet gear capable of catching 
multispecies from the Cape Cod South Closure Area. This prohibition does 
not apply to vessels fishing with a single pelagic gillnet (as described 
in Sec. 648.81(f)(2)(ii) of this title).
    (ii) Area boundaries. The Cape Cod South Closure Area is bounded by 
straight lines connecting the following points in the order stated:

                       Cape Cod South Closure Area
------------------------------------------------------------------------
             Point                     N. Lat.             W. Long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
CCS1...........................  4119.6...  7145.0 (RI
                                                      shoreline)
CCS2...........................  4040.0...  7145.0
CCS3...........................  4040.0...  7030.0
CCS4...........................  4120.9...  7030.0
CCS5...........................  4123.1...  7030.0
CCS6...........................  4133.1...  7030.0 (MA
                                                      shoreline)
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (7) Offshore Management Area--(i) Area restrictions. From November 1 
through May 31, it is prohibited to fish with, set, haul back, possess 
on board a vessel unless stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2, or fail 
to remove sink gillnet gear or gillnet gear capable of catching 
multispecies from the Offshore Management Area, unless the gillnet gear 
is equipped with pingers in accordance with paragraphs (b) and (c) of 
this section. This restriction does not apply to vessels fishing with a 
single pelagic gillnet (as described in Sec. 648.81(f)(2)(ii) of this 
title).
    (ii) Area boundaries. The Offshore Management Area is bounded by 
straight lines connecting the following points in the order stated:

                        Offshore Management Area
------------------------------------------------------------------------
             Point                   N. Lat.              W. Long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
OFS1..........................  4250.0..  6930.0
OFS2..........................  4310.0..  6910.0
OFS3..........................  4310.0..  6740.0
OFS4..........................  4305.8..  6740.0 (EEZ
                                                    boundary)
OFS5..........................  4253.1..  6744.5 (EEZ
                                                    boundary)
OFS6..........................  4247.3..  6740.0 (EEZ
                                                    boundary)
OFS7..........................  4210.0..  6740.0
OFS8..........................  4210.0..  6930.0
OFS1..........................  4250.0..  6930.0
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (8) Cashes Ledge Closure Area--(i) Area restrictions. During the 
month of February, it is prohibited to fish with, set, haul back, 
possess on board a vessel unless stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2, 
or fail to remove sink gillnet gear or gillnet gear capable of catching 
multispecies from the Cashes Ledge Closure Area. This restriction does 
not apply to vessels fishing with a single pelagic gillnet (as described 
in Sec. 648.81(f)(2)(ii) of this title).
    (ii) Area boundaries. The Cashes Ledge Closure Area is bounded by 
straight lines connecting the following points in the order stated:

                        Cashes Ledge Closure Area
------------------------------------------------------------------------
             Point                   N. Lat.              W. Long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
CL1...........................  4230.0..  6900.0
CL2...........................  4230.0..  6830.0
CL3...........................  4300.0..  6830.0
CL4...........................  4300.0..  6900.0
CL1...........................  4230.0..  6900.0
------------------------------------------------------------------------


[[Page 48]]

    (b) Pingers--(1) Pinger specifications. For the purposes of this 
subpart, a pinger is an acoustic deterrent device which, when immersed 
in water, broadcasts a 10 kHz (plus or minus 2 kHz) sound at 132 dB 
(plus or minus 4 dB) re 1 micropascal at 1 m, lasting 300 milliseconds 
(plus or minus 15 milliseconds), and repeating every 4 seconds (plus or 
minus 0.2 seconds).
    (2) Pinger attachment. An operating and functional pinger must be 
attached at each end of a string of gillnets and at the bridle of every 
net, or every 300 feet (91.4 m or 50 fathoms), whichever is closer.
    (c) Pinger training and authorization. The operator of a vessel may 
not fish with, set, haul back, possess on board a vessel unless stowed 
in accordance with Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove sink gillnet gear or 
gillnet gear capable of catching multispecies in closed areas where 
pingers are required as specified under paragraph (b) of this section, 
unless the operator has satisfactorily received pinger training and 
possesses and retains on board the vessel a valid pinger training 
authorization issued by NMFS.
    (d) [Reserved]
    (e) Research permits. An exemption to the requirements set forth in 
this section may be acquired for the purposes of conducting scientific 
or gear research within the restricted areas described in this section. 
A scientific research permit must be acquired through NMFS's existing 
permit application process, administered by NMFS.
    (f) Other special measures. The Assistant Administrator may, after 
consultation with the Take Reduction Team, revise the requirements of 
this section through notification published in the Federal Register if:
    (1) NMFS determines that pinger operating effectiveness in the 
commercial fishery is inadequate to reduce bycatch below the stock's PBR 
level.
    (2) NMFS determines that the boundary or timing of a closed area is 
inappropriate, or that gear modifications (including pingers) are not 
reducing bycatch to below the PBR level.

[75 FR 7396, Feb. 19, 2010, as amended at 78 FR 61826, Oct. 4, 2013]



Sec. 229.34  Harbor Porpoise Take Reduction Plan Regulations--Mid-Atlantic.

    (a)(1) Regulated waters. The regulations in this section apply to 
all waters in the Mid-Atlantic bounded on the east by 7230 W. 
long. at the southern coast of Long Island, NY at 4050.1 N. 
lat. and on the south by the NC/SC border (3351.1 N. lat.), 
except for the areas exempted in paragraph (a)(2) of this section.
    (2) Exempted waters. The regulations within this section are not 
applicable to waters landward of the first bridge over any embayment, 
harbor, or inlet, or to waters landward of the following lines:

New York
  4045.70 N., 7245.15 W. to 4045.72 N., 
7245.30 W. (Moriches Bay Inlet)
  4037.32 N., 7318.40 W. to 4038.00 N., 
7318.56 W. (Fire Island Inlet)
  4034.40 N., 7334.55 W. to 4035.08 N., 
7335.22 W. (Jones Inlet)
New Jersey/Delaware
  3945.90 N., 7405.90 W. to 3945.15 N., 
7406.20 W. (Barnegat Inlet)
  3930.70 N., 7416.70 W. to 3926.30 N., 
7419.75 W. (Beach Haven to Brigantine Inlet)
  3856.20 N., 7451.70 W. to 3856.20 N., 
7451.90 W. (Cape May Inlet)

    All marine and tidal waters landward of the 72 COLREGS demarcation 
line (International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea, 1972), 
as depicted or noted on nautical charts published by NOAA (Coast Charts 
1:80,000 scale), and as described in 33 CFR part 80. (Delaware Bay)

Maryland/Virginia
  3819.48 N., 7505.10 W. to 3819.35 N., 
7505.25 W. (Ocean City Inlet)

    All marine and tidal waters landward of the 72 COLREGS demarcation 
line (International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea, 1972), 
as depicted or noted on nautical charts published by NOAA (Coast Charts 
1:80,000 scale), and as described in 33 CFR part 80. (Chincoteague to 
Ship Shoal Inlet)

  3711.10 N., 7549.30 W. to 3710.65 N., 
7549.60 W. (Little Inlet)
  3707.00 N., 7553.75 W. to 3705.30 N., 
7556. W. (Smith Island Inlet)

North Carolina


[[Page 49]]


    All marine and tidal waters landward of the 72 COLREGS demarcation 
line (International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea, 1972), 
as depicted or noted on nautical charts published by NOAA (Coast Charts 
1:80,000 scale), and as described in 33 CFR part 80.
    (b) Restrictions--(1) Waters off New Jersey Management Area. The 
Waters off New Jersey Management Area is bounded by straight lines 
connecting the following points in the order stated:

                  Waters Off New Jersey Management Area
------------------------------------------------------------------------
             Point                     N. Lat.             W. Long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
WNJ1...........................  4050.1...  7230.0 (NY
                                                      shoreline)
WNJ2...........................  3847.0...  7230.0
WNJ3...........................  3847.0...  7505.0 (DE
                                                      shoreline)
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (i) Closure. From April 1 through April 20, it is prohibited to fish 
with, set, haul back, possess on board a vessel unless stowed in 
accordance with Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove any large mesh gillnet 
gear from the Waters off New Jersey Management Area.
    (ii) Gear limitations and requirements--large mesh gillnet gear. 
From January 1 through April 30, except during April 1 through April 20, 
as described in paragraph (b)(1)(i) of this section, no person may fish 
with, set, haul back, possess on board a vessel unless stowed in 
accordance with Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove any large mesh gillnet 
gear in the Waters off New Jersey Management Area, unless the gear 
complies with the specified gear characteristics described in paragraphs 
(b)(1)(ii)(A) through (F) of this section. During this period, no vessel 
may enter or remain in the Waters off New Jersey Management Area with 
large mesh gillnet gear on board, unless the gear complies with the 
specified gear characteristics described in paragraphs (b)(1)(ii)(A) 
through (F) of this section, or is stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2. 
In order to comply with these specified gear characteristics, the gear 
must have all the following characteristics:
    (A) Floatline length. The floatline is not more than 4,800 ft 
(1,463.0 m).
    (B) Twine size. The twine is at least 0.035 inches (0.90 mm) in 
diameter.
    (C) Size of nets. Individual nets or net panels are not more than 
300 ft (91.44 m or 50 fathoms) in length.
    (D) Number of nets. The total number of individual nets or net 
panels for a vessel, including all nets on board the vessel, hauled by 
the vessel, or deployed by the vessel, does not exceed 80.
    (E) Number of nets per string. The total number of nets or net 
panels in a net string does not exceed 16.
    (F) Tie-down system. The gillnet gear is equipped with tie-downs 
spaced not more than 24 ft (7.3 m) apart along the floatline, and each 
tie-down is not more than 48 inches (18.90 cm) in length from the point 
where it connects to the floatline to the point where it connects to the 
lead line.
    (iii) Gear limitations and requirements--small mesh gillnet gear. 
From January 1 through April 30, no person may fish with, set, haul 
back, possess on board a vessel unless stowed in accordance with 
Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove any small mesh gillnet gear in the Waters 
off New Jersey Management Area unless the gear complies with the 
specified gear characteristics described in paragraphs (b)(1)(iii)(A) 
through (F) of this section. During this period, no vessel may enter or 
remain in the Waters off New Jersey Management Area with small mesh 
gillnet gear on board, unless the gear complies with the specified gear 
characteristics described in paragraphs (b)(1)(iii)(A) through (F) of 
this section, or is stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2. In order to 
comply with these specified gear characteristics, the gear must have all 
the following characteristics:
    (A) Floatline length. The floatline is not more than 3,000 ft (914.4 
m) in length.
    (B) Twine size. The twine is at least 0.031 inches (0.81 mm) in 
diameter.
    (C) Size of nets. Individual nets or net panels are not more than 
300 ft (91.4 m or 50 fathoms) in length.
    (D) Number of nets. The total number of individual nets or net 
panels for a vessel, including all nets on board the vessel, hauled by 
the vessel or deployed by the vessel, does not exceed 45.
    (E) Number of nets per string. The total number of nets or net 
panels in a net string does not exceed 10.

[[Page 50]]

    (F) Tie-down system. Tie-downs are prohibited.
    (2) Mudhole North Management Area. The Mudhole North Management Area 
is bounded by straight lines connecting the following points in the 
order stated:

                      Mudhole North Management Area
------------------------------------------------------------------------
             Point                     N. Lat.             W. Long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
MN1............................  4028.1...  7400.0 (NJ
                                                      shoreline)
MN2............................  4030.0...  7400.0
MN3............................  4030.0...  7320.0
MN4............................  4005.0...  7320.0
MN5............................  4005.0...  7402.0 (NJ
                                                      shoreline)
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (i) Closures. From February 15 through March 15, it is prohibited to 
fish with, set, haul back, possess on board a vessel unless stowed in 
accordance with Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove any large or small mesh 
gillnet gear from the Mudhole North Management Area. In addition, from 
April 1 through April 20, it is prohibited to fish with, set, haul back, 
possess on board a vessel unless stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2, 
or fail to remove any large mesh gillnet gear from the Mudhole North 
Management Area.
    (ii) Gear limitations and requirements--large mesh gillnet gear. 
From January 1 through April 30, except during February 15 through March 
15 and April 1 through April 20 as described in paragraph (b)(2)(i) of 
this section, no person may fish with, set, haul back, possess on board 
a vessel unless stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove 
any large mesh gillnet gear in the Mudhole North Management Area unless 
the gear complies with the specified gear characteristics described in 
paragraphs (b)(2)(ii)(A) through (F) of this section. During this 
period, no vessel may enter or remain in the Mudhole North Management 
Area with large mesh gillnet gear on board, unless the gear complies 
with the specified gear characteristics described in paragraphs 
(b)(2)(ii)(A) through (F) of this section, or is stowed in accordance 
with Sec. 229.2. In order to comply with these specified gear 
characteristics, the gear must have all the following characteristics:
    (A) Floatline length. The floatline is not more than 3,900 ft 
(1,188.7 m).
    (B) Twine size. The twine is at least 0.035 inches (0.90 mm) in 
diameter.
    (C) Size of nets. Individual nets or net panels are not more than 
300 ft (91.44 m or 50 fathoms) in length.
    (D) Number of nets. The total number of individual nets or net 
panels for a vessel, including all nets on board the vessel, hauled by 
the vessel or deployed by the vessel, does not exceed 80.
    (E) Number of nets per string. The total number of nets or net 
panels in a net string does not exceed 13.
    (F) Tie-down system. The gillnet gear is equipped with tie-downs 
spaced not more than 24 ft (7.3 m) apart along the floatline, and each 
tie-down is not more than 48 inches (18.90 cm) in length from the point 
where it connects to the floatline to the point where it connects to the 
lead line.
    (iii) Gear limitations and requirements--small mesh gillnet gear. 
From January 1 through April 30, except during February 15 through March 
15 as described in paragraph (b)(2)(i) of this section, no person may 
fish with, set, haul back, possess on board a vessel unless stowed in 
accordance with Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove any small mesh gillnet 
gear in the Mudhole North Management Area unless the gear complies with 
the specified gear characteristics described in paragraphs 
(b)(2)(iii)(A) through (F) of this section. During this period, no 
vessel may enter or remain in the Mudhole North Management Area with 
small mesh gillnet gear on board unless the gear complies with the 
specified gear characteristics described in paragraphs (b)(2)(iii)(A) 
through (F) of this section, or is stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2. 
In order to comply with these specified gear characteristics, the gear 
must have all the following characteristics:
    (A) Floatline length. The floatline is not more than 3,000 ft (914.4 
m) in length.
    (B) Twine size. The twine is at least 0.031 inches (0.81 mm) in 
diameter.
    (C) Size of nets. Individual nets or net panels are not more than 
300 ft (91.4 m or 50 fathoms) in length.
    (D) Number of nets. The total number of individual nets or net 
panels for a vessel, including all nets on board the vessel, hauled by 
the vessel or deployed by the vessel, does not exceed 45.

[[Page 51]]

    (E) Number of nets per string. The total number of nets or net 
panels in a net string does not exceed 10.
    (F) Tie-down system. Tie-downs are prohibited.
    (3) Mudhole South Management Area. The Mudhole South Management Area 
is bounded by straight lines connecting the following points in the 
order stated:

                      Mudhole South Management Area
------------------------------------------------------------------------
              Point                       N. Lat.            W. Long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
MS1..............................  4005.0.....  7331.0
MS2..............................  4005.0.....  7300.0
MS3..............................  3951.0.....  7300.0
MS4..............................  3951.0.....  7331.0
MS1..............................  4005.0.....  7331.0
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (i) Closures. From February 1 through March 15, it is prohibited to 
fish with, set, haul back, possess on board a vessel unless stowed in 
accordance with Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove any large or small mesh 
gillnet gear in the Mudhole South Management Area. In addition, from 
April 1 through April 20, it is prohibited to fish with, set, haul back, 
possess on board a vessel unless stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2, 
or fail to remove any large mesh gillnet gear from the Mudhole South 
Management Area.
    (ii) Gear limitations and requirements--large mesh gillnet gear. 
From January 1 through April 30, except during February 1 through March 
15 and April 1 through April 20 as described in paragraph (b)(3)(i) of 
this section, no person may fish with, set, haul back, possess on board 
a vessel unless stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove 
any large mesh gillnet gear in the Mudhole South Management Area unless 
the gear complies with the specified gear characteristics described in 
paragraphs (b)(3)(ii)(A) through (F) of this section. During this 
period, no vessel may enter or remain in the Mudhole South Management 
Area with large mesh gillnet gear on board, unless the gear complies 
with the specified gear characteristics described in paragraphs 
(b)(3)(ii)(A) through (F) of this section, or is stowed in accordance 
with Sec. 229.2. In order to comply with these specified gear 
characteristics, the gear must have all the following characteristics:
    (A) Floatline length. The floatline is not more than 3,900 ft 
(1,188.7 m).
    (B) Twine size. The twine is at least 0.035 inches (0.90 mm) in 
diameter.
    (C) Size of nets. Individual nets or net panels are not more than 
300 ft (91.44 m or 50 fathoms) in length.
    (D) Number of nets. The total number of individual nets or net 
panels for a vessel, including all nets on board the vessel, hauled by 
the vessel or deployed by the vessel, does not exceed 80.
    (E) Number of nets per string. The total number of nets or net 
panels in a net string does not exceed 13.
    (F) Tie-down system. The gillnet gear is equipped with tie-downs 
spaced not more than 24 ft (7.3 m) apart along the floatline, and each 
tie-down is not more than 48 inches (18.90 cm) in length from the point 
where it connects to the floatline to the point where it connects to the 
lead line.
    (iii) Gear limitations and requirements--small mesh gillnet gear. 
From January 1 through April 30 of each year, except during February 1 
through March 15 as described in paragraph (b)(3)(i) of this section, no 
person may fish with, set, haul back, possess on board a vessel unless 
stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove any small mesh 
gillnet gear in the Mudhole South Management Area unless the gear 
complies with the specified gear characteristics described in paragraphs 
(b)(3)(iii)(A) through (F) of this section. During this period, no 
vessel may enter or remain in the Mudhole South Management Area with 
small mesh gillnet gear on board unless the gear complies with the 
specified gear characteristics described in paragraphs (b)(3)(iii)(A) 
through (F) of this section, or is stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2. 
In order to comply with these specified gear characteristics, the gear 
must have all the following characteristics:
    (A) Floatline length. The floatline is not more than 3,000 ft (914.4 
m) in length.
    (B) Twine size. The twine is at least 0.031 inches (0.81 mm) in 
diameter.
    (C) Size of nets. Individual nets or net panels are not more than 
300 ft (91.4 m or 50 fathoms) in length.
    (D) Number of nets. The total number of individual nets or net 
panels for a vessel, including all nets on board the vessel, hauled by 
the vessel or deployed by the vessel, does not exceed 45.

[[Page 52]]

    (E) Number of nets per string. The total number of nets or net 
panels in a net string does not exceed 10.
    (F) Tie-down system. Tie-downs are prohibited.
    (4) Southern Mid-Atlantic Management Area. The Southern Mid-Atlantic 
Management Area is bounded by straight lines connecting the following 
points in the order stated:

                  Southern Mid-Atlantic Management Area
------------------------------------------------------------------------
             Point                   N. Lat.              W. Long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
SMA1..........................  3847.0..  7505.0 (DE
                                                    shoreline)
SMA2..........................  3847.0..  7230.0
SMA3..........................  3351.1..  7230.0
SMA4..........................  3351.1..  7832.5 (NC/
                                                    SC border)
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (i) Closures. From February 15 through March 15, it is prohibited to 
fish with, set, haul back, possess on board a vessel unless stowed in 
accordance with Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove any large mesh gillnet 
gear from the Southern Mid-Atlantic Management Area.
    (ii) Gear limitations and requirements--large mesh gillnet gear. 
From February 1 through April 30, except during February 15 through 
March 15 as described in paragraph (b)(4)(i) of this section, no person 
may fish with, set, haul back, possess on board a vessel unless stowed 
in accordance with Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove any large mesh gillnet 
gear in the Southern Mid-Atlantic Management Area unless the gear 
complies with the specified gear characteristics described in paragraphs 
(b)(4)(ii)(A) through (F) of this section. During this period, no vessel 
may enter or remain in the Southern Mid-Atlantic Management Area with 
large mesh gillnet gear on board, unless the gear complies with the 
specified gear characteristics described in paragraphs (b)(4)(ii)(A) 
through (F) of this section, or is stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2. 
In order to comply with these specified gear characteristics, the gear 
must have all the following characteristics:
    (A) Floatline length. The floatline is not more than 3,900 ft 
(1,188.7 m) in length.
    (B) Twine size. The twine is at least 0.035 inches (0.90 mm) in 
diameter.
    (C) Size of nets. Individual nets or net panels are not more than 
300 ft (91.4 m or 50 fathoms) in length.
    (D) Number of nets. The total number of individual nets or net 
panels for a vessel, including all nets on board the vessel, hauled by 
the vessel or deployed by the vessel, does not exceed 80.
    (E) Number of nets per string. The total number of nets or net 
panels in a net string does not exceed 13.
    (F) Tie-down system. The gillnet gear is equipped with tie-downs 
spaced not more than 24 ft (7.3 m) apart along the floatline, and each 
tie-down is not more than 48 inches (18.90 cm) in length from the point 
where it connects to the floatline to the point where it connects to the 
lead line.
    (iii) Gear limitations and requirements--small mesh gillnet gear. 
From February 1 through April 30, no person may fish with, set, haul 
back, possess on board a vessel unless stowed in accordance with 
Sec. 229.2, or fail to remove any small mesh gillnet gear in the 
Southern Mid-Atlantic Management Area unless the gear complies with the 
specified gear characteristics described in paragraphs (b)(4)(iii)(A) 
through (F) of this section. During this period, no vessel may enter or 
remain in the Southern Mid-Atlantic Management Area with small mesh 
gillnet gear on board, unless the gear complies with the specified gear 
characteristics described in paragraphs (b)(4)(iii)(A) through (F) of 
this section, or is stowed in accordance with Sec. 229.2. In order to 
comply with these specified gear characteristics, the gear must have all 
the following characteristics:
    (A) Floatline length. The floatline is no longer than 2,118 ft 
(645.6 m).
    (B) Twine size. The twine is at least 0.031 inches (0.81 mm) in 
diameter.
    (C) Size of nets. Individual nets or net panels are not more than 
300 ft (91.4 m or 50 fathoms) in length.
    (D) Number of nets. The total number of individual nets or net 
panels for a vessel, including all nets on board the vessel, hauled by 
the vessel or deployed by the vessel, does not exceed 45.
    (E) Number of nets per string. The total number of nets or net 
panels in a net string does not exceed 7.
    (F) Tie-down system. Tie-downs are prohibited.

[[Page 53]]

    (c) Research permits. An exemption to the requirements set forth in 
this section may be acquired for the purposes of conducting scientific 
or gear research within the restricted areas described in this section. 
A scientific research permit must be acquired through NMFS' existing 
permit application process, administered by NMFS.
    (d) Other special measures. The Assistant Administrator may revise 
the requirements of this section through notification published in the 
Federal Register if NMFS determines that the boundary or timing of a 
closed area is inappropriate, or that gear modifications are not 
reducing bycatch to below the stock's PBR level.

[75 FR 7399, Feb. 19, 2010]



Sec. 229.35  Bottlenose Dolphin Take Reduction Plan.

    (a) Purpose and scope. The purpose of this section is to implement 
the Bottlenose Dolphin Take Reduction Plan (BDTRP) to reduce incidental 
mortality and serious injury of strategic stocks of bottlenose dolphins 
within the Western North Atlantic coastal morphotype in specific 
Category I and II commercial fisheries from New Jersey through Florida. 
Specific Category I and II commercial fisheries within the scope of the 
BDTRP are indentified and updated in the annual List of Fisheries. Gear 
restricted by this section includes small, medium, and large mesh 
gillnets and pound nets. The geographic scope of the BDTRP is all tidal 
and marine waters within 6.5 nautical miles (12 km) of shore from the 
New York-New Jersey border southward to Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, 
and within 14.6 nautical miles (27 km) of shore from Cape Hatteras, 
southward to, and including the east coast of Florida down to the 
fishery management council demarcation line between the Atlantic Ocean 
and the Gulf of Mexico (as described in Sec. 600.105 of this title).
    (b) Definitions. In addition to the definitions contained in the 
Act, Secs. 216.3 and 229.2 of this chapter, the terms defined in this 
section shall have the following definitions, even if a contrary 
definition exists in the Act, Sec. 216.3, or Sec. 229.2:
    Beach means landward of and including the mean low water line.
    Beach/water interface means the mean low water line.
    Bottlenose Dolphin Pound Net Regulated Area means all Virginia 
marine waters of the Atlantic Ocean within 3 nautical miles (5.56 km) of 
shoreline and all adjacent tidal waters, bounded on the north by 
3801.6 N. (Maryland/Virginia border) and on the south by 
3633 N (Virginia/North Carolina border); and all southern 
Virginia waters of the mainstem Chesapeake Bay bounded on the south and 
west by the Hampton Roads Bridge Tunnel across the James River and the 
Coleman Memorial Bridge across the York River; and north and east by the 
following points connected by straight lines in the order listed:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
             Point                          Area description
------------------------------------------------------------------------
1.............................  Where 3719.0 N. lat. meets the
                                 shoreline of the Severn River fork,
                                 near Stump Point, Virginia (western
                                 portion of Mobjack Bay), which is
                                 approximately 7626.75 W. long.
2.............................  3719.0 N. lat., 7613.0
                                 W. long.
3.............................  3713.0 N. lat., 7613.0
                                 W. long.
4.............................  Where 3713.0 N. lat. meets the
                                 eastern shoreline of Chesapeake Bay,
                                 Virginia, near Elliotts Creek, which is
                                 approximately 7600.75 W. long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Large mesh gillnet means a gillnet constructed with a mesh size 
greater than or equal to 7-inches (17.8 cm) stretched mesh.
    Medium mesh gillnet means a gillnet constructed with a mesh size of 
greater than 5-inches (12.7 cm) to less than 7-inches (17.8 cm) 
stretched mesh.
    New Jersey, Delaware, and Maryland State waters means the area 
consisting of all marine and tidal waters, within 3 nautical miles (5.56 
km) of shore, bounded on the north by 40o 30 N. (New York/New 
Jersey border at the coast) and on the south by 38o 01.6 N. 
(Maryland/Virginia border at the coast).
    Night means any time between one hour after sunset and one hour 
prior to sunrise.
    Northern North Carolina State waters means the area consisting of 
all marine and tidal waters, within 3 nautical miles (5.56 km) of shore, 
bounded on the north by 36 33 N. (Virginia/North Carolina 
border at the coast) and on the south by 34 35.4 N. (Cape 
Lookout, North Carolina).

[[Page 54]]

    Northern Virginia State waters means the area consisting of all 
marine and tidal waters, within 3 nautical miles (5.56 km) of shore, 
bounded on the north by 38 01.6 N. (Virginia/Maryland border 
at the coast) and on the south by 37 07.23 N. (Cape Charles 
Light on Smith Island in the Chesapeake Bay mouth).
    Small mesh gillnet means a gillnet constructed with a mesh size of 
less than or equal to 5-inches (12.7 cm) stretched mesh.
    South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida waters means the area 
consisting of all marine and tidal waters, within 14.6 nautical miles 
(27 km) of shore, bounded on the north by a line extending in a 
direction of 1353455" from true north from the North Carolina/
South Carolina border at 335107.9" N. and 783232.6" 
W., and on the south by the fishery management council demarcation line 
between the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico (as described in 
Sec. 600.105 of this title).
    Southern North Carolina State waters means the area consisting of 
all marine and tidal waters, within 3 nautical miles (5.56 km) of shore, 
bounded on the north by 3435.4 N. (Cape Lookout, North 
Carolina), and on the south by a line extending in a direction of 
1353455" from true north from the North Carolina/South 
Carolina border at 335107.9" N. and 783232.6" W.
    Southern Virginia State waters means the area consisting of all 
marine and tidal waters, within 3 nautical miles (5.56 km) of shore, 
bounded on the north by 37 07.23 N. (Cape Charles Light on 
Smith Island in the Chesapeake Bay mouth) and on the south by 36 
33 N. (Virginia/North Carolina border at the coast).
    (c) BDTRP regulated waters--(1) Gillnets. The regulations pertaining 
to gillnets in this section apply to New Jersey, Delaware, and Maryland 
State waters; Northern North Carolina State waters; Northern Virginia 
State waters; South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida waters; Southern 
North Carolina State waters; and Southern Virginia State waters as 
defined in Sec. 229.35(b), except for the waters identified in 
Sec. 229.34(a)(2), with the following modification and addition. From 
Chincoteague to Ship Shoal Inlet in Virginia (37 52 N. 75 
24.30 W. to 37 11.90 N. 75 48.30 W) and 
South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida waters, those waters landward of 
the 72 COLREGS demarcation line (International Regulations for 
Preventing Collisions at Sea, 1972), as depicted or noted on nautical 
charts published by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 
(Coast Charts 1:80,000 scale), and as described in 33 CFR part 80 are 
excluded from the regulations.
    (2) Pound nets. The regulations pertaining to pound nets in this 
section apply to the Bottlenose Dolphin Pound Net Regulated Area.
    (d) Regional management measures--(1) New Jersey, Delaware, and 
Maryland State waters--(i) Medium and large mesh gillnets. From June 1 
through October 31, in New Jersey, Delaware, and Maryland state waters, 
no person may fish with any medium or large mesh anchored gillnet gear 
at night unless such person remains within 0.5 nautical mile (0.93 km) 
of the closest portion of each gillnet and removes all such gear from 
the water and stows it on board the vessel before the vessel returns to 
port.
    (ii) [Reserved]
    (2) Virginia state waters--(i) Medium and large mesh gillnets. From 
June 1 through October 31, in Southern Virginia State waters and 
Northern Virginia State waters, no person may fish with any medium or 
large mesh anchored gillnet gear at night unless such person remains 
within 0.5 nautical mile (0.93 km) of the closest portion of each 
gillnet and removes all such gear from the water and stows it on board 
the vessel before the vessel returns to port.
    (ii) Pound nets. (A) Year-round, any offshore pound net in the 
Bottlenose Dolphin Pound Net Regulated Area must use a modified pound 
net leader.
    (B) Year-round, any nearshore and offshore pound nets set in the 
Bottlenose Dolphin Pound Net Regulated Area must have all three 
continuous sections as defined in 50 CFR 229.2, except that one or more 
sections may be missing for a maximum period of 10 days for purposes of 
setting, removing, and/or repairing pound nets.
    (C) The pound net licensee and the vessel operator of any offshore 
pound net set in the Bottlenose Dolphin Pound Net Regulated Area must 
have

[[Page 55]]

completed modified pound net leader compliance training and possess on 
board the vessel a valid modified pound net leader compliance training 
certificate issued by NMFS. NMFS retains discretion to provide 
exemptions in limited circumstances where appropriate. Notice will be 
given by NMFS announcing the times and locations of modified pound net 
leader compliance training.
    (3) Southern Virginia State waters--(i) Large mesh gillnets. From 
November 1 through December 31, in Southern Virginia State waters, no 
person may fish with, possess on board a vessel unless stowed, or fail 
to remove from the water, any large mesh gillnet gear at night.
    (ii) [Reserved]
    (4) Northern North Carolina State waters--(i) Small mesh gillnets. 
From May 1 through October 31, in Northern North Carolina State waters, 
no person may fish with any small mesh gillnet gear longer than 1,000 
feet (304.8 m).
    (ii) Medium mesh gillnets. From November 1 through April 30 of the 
following year, in Northern North Carolina State waters, no person may 
fish with any medium mesh gillnet at night.
    (iii) Large mesh gillnets. (A) From April 15 through December 15, in 
Northern North Carolina State waters, no person may fish with any large 
mesh gillnet.
    (B) From December 16 through April 14 of the following year, in 
Northern North Carolina State waters, no person may fish with any large 
mesh gillnet without tie-downs at night.
    (5) Southern North Carolina State waters--(i) Medium mesh gillnets. 
From November 1 through April 30 of the following year, in Southern 
North Carolina State waters, no person may fish with any medium mesh 
gillnet at night.
    (ii) Large mesh gillnets. (A) From April 15 through December 15, in 
Southern North Carolina State waters, no person may fish with any large 
mesh gillnet.
    (B) From December 16 through April 14 of the following year, in 
Southern North Carolina State waters, no person may fish, possess on 
board unless stowed, or fail to remove from the water, any large mesh 
gillnet at night.
    (6) South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida waters--(i) Gillnets. Year-
round, in South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida waters, no person may 
fish with any gillnet gear unless such person remains within 0.25 
nautical miles (0.46 km) of the closest portion of the gillnet. Gear 
shall be removed from the water and stowed on board the vessel before 
the vessel returns to port.
    (ii) [Reserved]

[71 FR 24796, Apr. 26, 2006, as amended at 73 FR 77533, Dec. 19, 2008; 
77 FR 45270, July 31, 2012; 80 FR 6929, Feb. 9, 2015]



Sec. 229.36  Atlantic Pelagic Longline Take Reduction Plan (PLTRP).

    (a) Purpose and scope. The purpose of this section is to implement 
the PLTRP to reduce incidental mortality and serious injury of long-
finned and short-finned pilot whales and Risso's dolphins in the 
Atlantic pelagic longline fishery off the U.S. east coast, a component 
of the Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico large pelagics longline 
fishery.
    (1) Persons subject to this section. The regulations in this section 
apply to the owner and operator of any vessel that has been issued or is 
required to be issued an Atlantic HMS tunas, swordfish, or shark permit 
under Sec. 635.4 of this title and that has pelagic longline gear 
onboard as described under Sec. 635.21(c) of this title.
    (2) Geographic scope. The geographic scope of the PLTRP is the 
Atlantic Federal EEZ off the U.S. East Coast. The regulations specified 
in paragraphs (b) through (d) of this section apply throughout the 
Atlantic Federal EEZ off the U.S. East Coast. The regulation specified 
in paragraph (e) of this section applies to all U.S. Atlantic pelagic 
longline vessels operating in the EEZ portion of the Mid-Atlantic Bight.
    (b) Definitions. In addition to the definitions contained in the 
MMPA and Secs. 216.3 and 229.2 of this chapter, the following 
definitions apply.
    (1) Cape Hatteras Special Research Area (CHSRA) means all waters 
inside and including the rectangular boundary described by the following 
lines: 35 N. lat., 75 W. long., 36 25' N. lat., and 74 35' W. long.

[[Page 56]]

    (2) Mid-Atlantic Bight means the area bounded by straight lines 
connecting the mid-Atlantic states' internal waters and extending to 71 
W. long. between 35 N. lat. and 43 N. lat.
    (3) Observer means an individual authorized by NMFS, or a designated 
contractor, placed aboard a commercial fishing vessel to record 
information on marine mammal interactions, fishing operations, marine 
mammal life history information, and other scientific data; to collect 
biological specimens; and to perform other scientific investigations.
    (4) Pelagic longline has the same meaning as in Sec. 635.2 of this 
title.
    (c) Marine Mammal Handling and Release Placard. The placard, 
``Marine Mammal Handling/Release Guidelines: A Quick Reference for 
Atlantic Pelagic Longline Gear,'' must be kept posted inside the 
wheelhouse and on the working deck. You may contact the NMFS Southeast 
Regional Office at (727) 824-5312 to request additional copies of the 
placard.
    (d) CHSRA--(1) Special observer requirements. If you deploy or fish 
with pelagic longline gear in the CHSRA, or intend to do so, you must 
call NMFS Southeast Fisheries Science Center (SEFSC), 1-888-254-2558, at 
least 48 hours, but no more than 96 hours, prior to embarking on your 
fishing trip. This requirement is in addition to any existing selection 
and notification requirement for observer coverage by the Pelagic 
Observer Program. If, upon calling in, you are informed by the NMFS 
SEFSC that no observer will be assigned and that no special research 
requirements will apply for that trip, then you need not wait until your 
stated date and time of departure and may depart on your fishing trip 
immediately. If you are assigned an observer, you must take the observer 
during that fishing trip. If you do not take the observer, you are 
prohibited from deploying or fishing with pelagic longline gear in the 
CHSRA for that fishing trip. You must comply with all provisions of 
Sec. 229.7, Monitoring of incidental mortalities and serious injuries. 
In addition, all provisions of 50 CFR 600.746, Observers, apply. No 
waivers will be granted under Sec. 229.7(c)(3) or Sec. 600.746(f). A 
vessel that would otherwise be required to carry an observer, but is 
inadequate or unsafe for purposes of carrying an observer and for 
allowing operation of normal observer functions, is prohibited from 
deploying or fishing with pelagic longline gear in the CHSRA.
    (2) Special research requirements. In addition to observing normal 
fishing activities, observers may conduct additional scientific 
investigations aboard your vessel designed to support the goals of the 
PLTRP. The observer will inform you of the specific additional 
investigations that may be conducted during your trip. An observer may 
direct you to modify your fishing behavior, gear, or both. Instead of 
carrying an observer, you may be required to carry and deploy gear 
provided by NMFS or an observer or modify your fishing practices. By 
calling in per Sec. 229.36(d)(1), you are agreeing to take an observer. 
You are also acknowledging you are both willing and able to participate 
in research, as per this paragraph, in the CHSRA consistent with the 
PLTRP without any compensation. If you are assigned any special research 
requirements, you must participate in the research for the duration of 
the assignment. If you do not participate in the research, you are 
prohibited from deploying or fishing with pelagic longline gear in the 
CHSRA for that fishing trip.
    (3) Exception for transit. If pelagic longline gear is appropriately 
stowed, a vessel may transit through the CHSRA without meeting the 
observer and research requirements specified in Sec. 229.36(d)(1) and 
Sec. 229.36(d)(2). For the purpose of this paragraph, transit means non-
stop progression through the area. Pelagic longline gear is 
appropriately stowed if all gangions, hooks, and buoys are disconnected 
from the mainline; hooks are not baited; longline left on the drum is 
covered with a tarp; and all other gear components are either stowed 
below deck or secured on deck and covered with a tarp.
    (e) Gear restrictions. No person may deploy a pelagic longline that 
exceeds 20 nautical miles (nm) (37.04 km) in length in the Mid-Atlantic 
Bight, including in the CHSRA, unless they have a written letter of 
authorization

[[Page 57]]

from the Director, NMFS Southeast Fishery Science Center to use a 
pelagic longline exceeding 20 nm (37.04 km) in the CHSRA in support 
research for reducing bycatch of marine mammals in the pelagic longline 
fishery.

[74 FR 23358, May 19, 2009]



Sec. 229.37  False Killer Whale Take Reduction Plan.

    (a) Purpose and scope. The purpose of this section is to implement 
the False Killer Whale Take Reduction Plan to reduce mortality and 
serious injury of the Hawaii Pelagic and Hawaii Insular stocks of false 
killer whales in the Hawaii-based deep-set and shallow-set pelagic 
longline fisheries. The requirements in this section apply to vessel 
owners and operators, and vessels registered for use with Hawaii 
longline limited access permits issued under Sec. 665.801(b) of this 
title.
    (b) Definitions. In addition to the definitions contained in 
Sec. 229.2, terms in this section have the following meanings:
    (1) Deep-set or Deep-setting has the same meaning as the definition 
at Sec. 665.800 of this title.
    (2) Longline gear has the same meaning as the definition at 
Sec. 665.800 of this title.
    (c) Gear requirements. (1) While deep-setting, the owner and 
operator of a vessel registered for use under a Hawaii longline limited 
access permit must use only hooks meeting the following specifications:
    (i) Circle hook with hook shank containing round wire that can be 
measured with a caliper or other appropriate gauge, with a wire diameter 
not to exceed 4.5 mm (0.177 in); and
    (ii) Offset not to exceed 10 degrees.
    (2) While deep-setting, owners and operators of vessels registered 
for use under a valid Hawaii longline limited access permit must use 
leaders and branch lines that all have a diameter of 2.0 mm or larger if 
the leaders and branch lines are made of monofilament nylon. If any 
other material is used for a leader or branch line, that material must 
have a breaking strength of at least 400 lb (181 kg).
    (d) Prohibited area management. (1) Main Hawaiian Islands Longline 
Fishing Prohibited Area. Longline fishing is prohibited in the portion 
of the EEZ around Hawaii bounded by straight lines connecting the 
following coordinated in the order listed:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                      Point                         N. lat.    W. long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
A...............................................  1805 W. longitude on the west, 154 
30 W. longitude on the east, the Papahanaumokuakea Marine 
National Monument and the Main Hawaiian Islands Longline Fishing 
Prohibited Area on the north, and the EEZ boundary on the south.
    (e) Southern Exclusion Zone trigger and procedures. (1) The 
Assistant Administrator will publish in the Federal Register the 
expected observer coverage for a fishing year, the potential biological 
removal level for the Hawaii Pelagic stock of false killer whales, and 
the associated trigger calculated using the specifications in paragraph 
(e)(2) of this section. This trigger will remain in effect until 
superseded by publication of a revised trigger.
    (2) As used in this section, trigger means the number of observed 
false killer whale mortalities or serious injuries in the deep-set 
longline fishery that occur in the EEZ around Hawaii, and that serves as 
the bycatch threshold for closing the Southern Exclusion Zone to deep-
set longline fishing. The trigger is calculated as the larger of these 
two values:
    (i) Two; or
    (ii) The smallest number of observed false killer whale mortalities 
or serious injuries that, when extrapolated based on the percentage 
observer coverage in the deep-set longline fishery

[[Page 58]]

for that year, exceeds the Hawaii Pelagic false killer whale stock's 
potential biological removal level.
    (3) Unless otherwise subject to paragraph (e)(4) of this section, if 
there is an observed false killer whale mortality or serious injury in 
the EEZ around Hawaii on a declared deep-set longline trip that meets 
the established trigger for a given fishing year, the Southern Exclusion 
Zone will be closed to deep-set longline fishing until the end of that 
fishing year.
    (4) If during the same calendar year following closure of the 
Southern Exclusion Zone in accordance with paragraph (e)(3) of this 
section, there is one observed false killer whale mortality or serious 
injury on a declared deep-set longline trip anywhere in the EEZ around 
Hawaii, then NMFS shall immediately convene the False Killer Whale Take 
Reduction Team.
    (5) If in the subsequent calendar year following closure of the 
Southern Exclusion Zone in accordance with paragraph (e)(3) of this 
section, there is an observed false killer whale mortality or serious 
injury in the EEZ around Hawaii on a declared deep-set longline trip 
that meets the established trigger for a given fishing year, the 
Southern Exclusion Zone will be closed to deep-set longline fishing 
until the area is reopened by the Assistant Administrator as per 
criteria in paragraph (e)(7) of this section.
    (6) Upon determining that closing the Southern Exclusion Zone is 
warranted pursuant to the procedures in paragraphs (e)(1) through (e)(5) 
of this section, the Assistant Administrator will provide notice to 
Hawaii longline permit holders and the False Killer Whale Take Reduction 
Team, publish a notice in the Federal Register, and post information on 
the NMFS Pacific Islands Regional Office web site. The notice will 
announce that the fishery will be closed beginning at a specified date, 
which is not earlier than 7 days and not later than 15 days, after the 
date of filing the closure notice for public inspection at the Office of 
the Federal Register.
    (7) Reopening criteria. If the Southern Exclusion Zone is closed 
pursuant to the procedure in paragraphs (e)(1) through (e)(6) of this 
section, the Assistant Administrator would reopen the Southern Exclusion 
Zone if one or more of the follow criteria were met:
    (i) The Assistant Administrator determines, upon consideration of 
the False Killer Whale Take Reduction Team's recommendations and 
evaluation of all relevant circumstances, that reopening of the Southern 
Exclusion Zone is warranted;
    (ii) In the 2-year period immediately following the date of the 
Southern Exclusion Zone closure, the deep-set longline fishery has zero 
observed false killer whale incidental mortalities and serious injuries 
within the remaining open areas of the EEZ around Hawaii;
    (iii) In the 2-year period immediately following the date of the 
closure, the deep-set longline fishery has reduced its total rate of 
false killer whale incidental mortality and serious injury (including 
the EEZ around Hawaii, the high seas, and the EEZ around Johnston Atoll 
(but not Palmyra Atoll) by an amount equal to or greater than the rate 
that would be required to reduce false killer whale incidental mortality 
and serious injury within the EEZ around Hawaii to below the Hawaii 
Pelagic false killer whale stock's potential biological removal level; 
or
    (iv) The average estimated level of false killer whale incidental 
mortality and serious injury in the deep-set longline fishery within the 
remaining open areas of the EEZ around Hawaii for up to the 5 most 
recent years is below the potential biological removal level for the 
Hawaii Pelagic stock of false killer whales at that time.
    (8) Upon determining that reopening the Southern Exclusion Zone is 
warranted pursuant to the procedures in paragraph (e)(7) of this 
section, the Assistant Administrator will provide notice to Hawaii 
longline permit holders and the False Killer Whale Take Reduction Team, 
publish a notice in the Federal Register, and post information on the 
NMFS Pacific Islands Regional Office web site. The notice will announce 
that the fishery will be reopened beginning at a specified date, which 
is not earlier than 7 days and not later than 15 days, after the date of 
filing the closure notice for public inspection at the Office of the 
Federal Register.

[[Page 59]]

    (f) Marine mammal handling and release. (1) Each year, both the 
owner and the operator of a vessel registered for use with a longline 
permit issued under Sec. 665.801 of this title must attend and be 
certified for completion of a workshop conducted by NMFS on interaction 
mitigation techniques for sea turtles, seabirds, and marine mammals, as 
required under Sec. 665.814 of this title.
    (2) Longline vessel operators (captains) must supervise and be in 
visual and/or verbal contact with the crew during any handling or 
release of marine mammals.
    (3) A NMFS-approved placard setting forth marine mammal handling 
and/or release procedures must be posted on the longline vessel in a 
conspicuous place that is regularly accessible and visible to the crew.
    (4) A NMFS-approved placard instructing vessel crew to notify the 
captain in the event of a marine mammal interaction must be posted on 
the longline vessel in a conspicuous place that is regularly accessible 
and visible to the crew.

[77 FR 71285, 71286, Nov. 29, 2012, as amended at 77 FR 71286, 71286, 
Nov. 29, 2012]

[[Page 60]]



   Sec. Figure 1 to Part 229--Drift Gillnet Pinger Configuration and 
                          Extender Requirements
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TR22JA99.001


[64 FR 3434, Jan. 22, 1999]
      

[[Page 61]]



                          SUBCHAPTER D_WHALING





PART 230_WHALING PROVISIONS--Table of Contents



Sec.
230.1  Purpose and scope.
230.2  Definitions.
230.3  General prohibitions.
230.4  Aboriginal subsistence whaling.
230.5  Licenses for aboriginal subsistence whaling.
230.6  Quotas and other restrictions.
230.7  Salvage of stinkers.
230.8  Reporting by whaling captains.

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 916 et seq.

    Source: 61 FR 29631, June 11, 1996, unless otherwise noted.



Sec. 230.1  Purpose and scope.

    The purpose of the regulations in this part is to implement the 
Whaling Convention Act (16 U.S.C. 916 et seq.) by prohibiting whaling 
except for aboriginal subsistence whaling allowed by the International 
Whaling Commission. Provisions of the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 
1972 (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.) and the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (16 
U.S.C. 1531 et seq.) also pertain to human interactions with whales. 
Rules elsewhere in this chapter govern such topics as scientific 
research permits, and incidental take and harassment of marine mammals.



Sec. 230.2  Definitions.

    Aboriginal subsistence whaling means whaling authorized by paragraph 
13 of the Schedule annexed to and constituting a part of the Convention.
    Assistant Administrator means the Assistant Administrator for 
Fisheries of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
    Authorized officer means:
    (1) Any commissioned, warrant, or petty officer of the U.S. Coast 
Guard;
    (2) Any special agent or enforcement officer of the National Marine 
Fisheries Service;
    (3) Any officer designated by the head of a Federal or state agency 
that has entered into an agreement with the Secretary of Commerce or the 
Commandant of the Coast Guard to enforce the provisions of the Whaling 
Convention Act; or
    (4) Any Coast Guard personnel accompanying and acting under the 
direction of any person described in paragraph (1) of this definition.
    Calf means any whale less than 1 year old or having milk in its 
stomach.
    Commission means the International Whaling Commission established by 
article III of the Convention.
    Convention means the International Convention for the Regulation of 
Whaling signed at Washington on December 2, 1946.
    Cooperative agreement means a written agreement between the National 
Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and a Native American whaling 
organization for the cooperative management of aboriginal subsistence 
whaling operations.
    Landing means bringing a whale or any parts thereof onto the ice or 
land in the course of whaling operations.
    Native American whaling organization means an entity recognized by 
the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration as representing and 
governing Native American whalers for the purposes of cooperative 
management of aboriginal subsistence whaling.
    Regulations of the Commission means the regulations in the Schedule 
annexed to and constituting a part of the Convention, as modified, 
revised, or amended by the Commission from time to time.
    Stinker means a dead, unclaimed whale found upon a beach, stranded 
in shallow water, or floating at sea.
    Strike means hitting a whale with a harpoon, lance, or explosive 
device.
    Wasteful manner means a method of whaling that is not likely to 
result in the landing of a struck whale or that does not include all 
reasonable efforts to retrieve the whale.
    Whale products means any unprocessed part of a whale and blubber, 
meat, bones, whale oil, sperm oil, spermaceti, meal, and baleen.
    Whaling means the scouting for, hunting, striking, killing, 
flensing, or landing of a whale, and the processing of whales or whale 
products.

[[Page 62]]

    Whaling captain or captain means any Native American who is 
authorized by a Native American whaling organization to be in charge of 
a vessel and whaling crew.
    Whaling crew means those Native Americans under the control of a 
captain.
    Whaling village means any U.S. village recognized by the Commission 
as having a cultural and/or subsistence need for whaling.



Sec. 230.3  General prohibitions.

    (a) No person shall engage in whaling in a manner that violates the 
Convention, any regulation of the Commission, or this part.
    (b) No person shall engage in whaling without first having obtained 
a license or scientific research permit issued by the Assistant 
Administrator.
    (c) No person shall ship, transport, purchase, sell, offer for sale, 
import, export, or possess any whale or whale products taken or 
processed in violation of the Convention, any regulation of the 
Commission, or this part, except as specified in Sec. 230.4(f).
    (d) No person shall fail to make, keep, submit, or furnish any 
record or report required of him/her by the Convention, any regulation 
of the Commission, or this part.
    (e) No person shall refuse to permit any authorized officer to 
enforce the Convention, any regulation of the Commission, or this part.



Sec. 230.4  Aboriginal subsistence whaling.

    (a) No person shall engage in aboriginal subsistence whaling, except 
a whaling captain licensed pursuant to Sec. 230.5 or a member of a 
whaling crew under the control of a licensed captain.
    (b) No whaling captain shall engage in whaling that is not in 
accordance with the regulations of the Commission, this part, and the 
relevant cooperative agreement.
    (c) No whaling captain shall engage in whaling for any calf or any 
whale accompanied by a calf.
    (d) No whaling captain shall engage in whaling without an adequate 
crew or without adequate supplies and equipment.
    (e) No person may receive money for participation in aboriginal 
subsistence whaling.
    (f) No person may sell or offer for sale whale products from whales 
taken in an aboriginal subsistence hunt, except that authentic articles 
of Native handicrafts may be sold or offered for sale.
    (g) No whaling captain shall continue to whale after:
    (1) The quota set for his/her village by the relevant Native 
American whaling organization is reached;
    (2) The license under which he/she is whaling is suspended as 
provided in Sec. 230.5(b); or
    (3) The whaling season for that species has been closed pursuant to 
Sec. 230.6.
    (h) No whaling captain shall claim domicile in more than one whaling 
village.
    (i) No person may salvage a stinker without complying with the 
provisions of Sec. 230.7.
    (j) No whaling captain shall engage in whaling with a harpoon, 
lance, or explosive dart that does not bear a permanent distinctive mark 
identifying the captain as the owner thereof.
    (k) No whaling captain shall engage in whaling in a wasteful manner.



Sec. 230.5  Licenses for aboriginal subsistence whaling.

    (a) A license is hereby issued to whaling captains identified by the 
relevant Native American whaling organization.
    (b) The Assistant Administrator may suspend the license of any 
whaling captain who fails to comply with the regulations in this part.



Sec. 230.6  Quotas and other restrictions.

    (a) Quotas for aboriginal subsistence whaling shall be set in 
accordance with the regulations of the Commission. Quotas shall be 
allocated to each whaling village or captain by the appropriate Native 
American whaling organization. The Assistant Administrator shall publish 
in the Federal Register, at least annually, aboriginal subsistence 
whaling quotas and any other limitations on aboriginal subsistence 
whaling deriving from regulations of the Commission. These quotas and 
restrictions shall also be incorporated in the relevant cooperative 
agreements.

[[Page 63]]

    (b) The relevant Native American whaling organization shall monitor 
the whale hunt and keep tally of the number of whales landed and struck. 
When a quota is reached, the organization shall declare the whaling 
season closed, and there shall be no further whaling under that quota 
during the calendar year. If the organization fails to close the whaling 
season after the quota has been reached, the Assistant Administrator may 
close it by filing notification in the Federal Register.



Sec. 230.7  Salvage of stinkers.

    (a) Any person salvaging a stinker shall submit to the Assistant 
Administrator or his/her representative an oral or written report 
describing the circumstances of the salvage within 12 hours of such 
salvage. He/she shall provide promptly to the Assistant Administrator or 
his/her representative each harpoon, lance, or explosive dart found in 
or attached to the stinker. The device shall be returned to the owner 
thereof promptly, unless it is retained as evidence of a possible 
violation.
    (b) There shall be a rebuttable presumption that a stinker has been 
struck by the captain whose mark appears on the harpoon, lance, or 
explosive dart found in or attached thereto, and, if no strike has been 
reported by such captain, such strike shall be deemed to have occurred 
at the time of recovery of the device.



Sec. 230.8  Reporting by whaling captains.

    (a) The relevant Native American whaling organization shall require 
each whaling captain licensed pursuant to Sec. 230.5 to provide a 
written statement of his/her name and village of domicile and a 
description of the distinctive marking to be placed on each harpoon, 
lance, and explosive dart.
    (b) Each whaling captain shall provide to the relevant Native 
American whaling organization an oral or written report of whaling 
activities including but not limited to the striking, attempted 
striking, or landing of a whale and, where possible, specimens from 
landed whales. The Assistant Administrator is authorized to provide 
technological assistance to facilitate prompt reporting and collection 
of specimens from landed whales, including but not limited to ovaries, 
ear plugs, and baleen plates. The report shall include at least the 
following information:
    (1) The number, dates, and locations of each strike, attempted 
strike, or landing.
    (2) The length (taken as the straight-line measurement from the tip 
of the upper jaw to the notch between the tail flukes) and the sex of 
the whales landed.
    (3) The length and sex of a fetus, if present in a landed whale.
    (4) An explanation of circumstances associated with the striking or 
attempted striking of any whale not landed.
    (c) If the relevant Native American whaling organization fails to 
provide the National Marine Fisheries Service the required reports, the 
Assistant Administrator may require the reports to be submitted by the 
whaling captains directly to the National Marine Fisheries Service.



 SUBCHAPTER E_TRANSPORTATION AND LABELING OF FISH OR WILDLIFE [RESERVED]



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                      SUBCHAPTER F_AID TO FISHERIES





PART 253_FISHERIES ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS--Table of Contents



                            Subpart A_General

Sec.
253.1  Purpose.

                   Subpart B_Fisheries Finance Program

253.10  General definitions.
253.11  General FFP credit standards and requirements.
253.12  Credit application.
253.13  Initial investigation and approval.
253.14  Loan documents.
253.15  Recourse against other parties.
253.16  Actual cost.
253.17  Insurance.
253.18  Closing.
253.19  Dual-use CCF.
253.20  Fees.
253.21  Demand by guaranteed noteholder and payment.
253.22  Program operating guidelines.
253.23  Default and liquidation.
253.24  Enforcement violations and adverse actions.
253.25  Other administrative requirements.
253.26  Traditional loans.
253.27  IFQ financing.
253.28  Halibut sablefish IFQ loans.
253.29  CDQ loans.
253.30  Crab IFQ loans.
253.31-253.49  [Reserved]

                 Subpart C_Interjurisdictional Fisheries

253.50  Definitions.
253.51  Apportionment.
253.52  State projects.
253.53  Other funds.
253.54  Administrative requirements.

    Authority: 46 U.S.C. 53701 and 16 U.S.C. 4101 et seq.

    Source: 75 FR 78623, Dec. 16, 2010, unless otherwise noted.



                            Subpart A_General



Sec. 253.1  Purpose.

    (a) The regulations in this part pertain to fisheries assistance 
programs. Subpart B of this part governs the Fisheries Finance Program 
(FFP or the Program), which makes capacity neutral long-term direct 
fisheries and aquaculture loans. The FFP conducts all credit 
investigations, makes all credit determinations and holds and services 
all credit collateral.
    (b) Subpart C of this part implements Public Law 99-659 (16 U.S.C. 
4100 et seq.), which has two objectives:
    (1) Promote and encourage State activities in support of the 
management of interjurisdictional fishery resources identified in 
interstate or Federal fishery management plans; and
    (2) Promote and encourage management of interjurisdictional fishery 
resources throughout their range.
    (3) The scope of this part includes guidance on making financial 
assistance awards to States or Interstate Commissions to undertake 
projects in support of management of interjurisdictional fishery 
resources in both the executive economic zone (EEZ) and State waters, 
and to encourage States to enter into enforcement agreements with either 
the Department of Commerce or the Department of the Interior.



                   Subpart B_Fisheries Finance Program



Sec. 253.10  General definitions.

    The terms used in this subpart have the following meanings:
    Act means Chapter 537 of Title 46 of the U.S. Code, (46 U.S.C. 
53701-35), as may be amended from time to time.
    Actual cost means the sum of all amounts for a project paid by an 
obligor (or related person), as well as all amounts that the Program 
determines the obligor will become obligated to pay, as such amounts are 
calculated by Sec. 253.16.
    Applicant means the individual or entity applying for a loan (the 
prospective obligor).
    Application means the documents provided to or requested by NMFS 
from an applicant to apply for a loan.
    Application fee means 0.5 percent of the dollar amount of financing 
requested.
    Approval in principle letter (AIP) means a written communication 
from NMFS to the applicant expressing the

[[Page 65]]

agency's commitment to provide financing for a project, subject to all 
applicable regulatory and Program requirements and in accordance with 
the terms and conditions contained in the AIP.
    Aquaculture facility means land, structures, appurtenances, 
laboratories, water craft built in the U.S., and any equipment used for 
the hatching, caring for, or growing fish, under controlled 
circumstances for commercial purposes, as well as the unloading, 
receiving, holding, processing, or distribution of such fish.
    Capital Construction Fund (CCF), as described under 46 U.S.C. 53501-
17, allows owners of eligible vessels to reserve capital for replacement 
vessels, additional vessels, reconstruction of vessels, or reconstructed 
vessels, built in the United States and documented under the laws of the 
United States, for operation in the fisheries of the United States.
    Captain means a vessel operator or a vessel master.
    Charter fishing means fishing from a vessel carrying a ``passenger 
for hire,'' as defined in 46 U.S.C. 2101(21a), such passenger being 
engaged in recreational fishing, from whom consideration is provided as 
a condition of carriage on the vessel, whether directly or indirectly 
flowing to the owner, charterer, operator, agent, or any other person 
having an interest in the vessel.
    Citizen means a ``citizen of the United States,'' as described in 46 
U.S.C. 104, or an entity who is a citizen for the purpose of documenting 
a vessel in the coastwise trade under 46 U.S.C. 50501.
    Crewman means any individual, other than a captain, a passenger for 
hire, or a fisheries observer working on a vessel that is engaged in 
fishing.
    Demand means a noteholder's request that a debtor or guarantor pay a 
note's full principal and interest balance.
    Facility means a fishery or an aquaculture facility.
    Fish means finfish, mollusks, crustaceans and all other forms of 
aquatic animal and plant life, other than marine mammals and birds.
    Fisheries harvest authorization means any transferable permit, 
license or other right, approval, or privilege to engage in fishing.
    Fishery facility means land, land structures, water craft that do 
not engage in fishing, and equipment used for transporting, unloading, 
receiving, holding, processing, preserving, or distributing fish for 
commercial purposes (including any water craft used for charter 
fishing).
    Fishing means:
    (1) The catching, taking, or harvesting of fish;
    (2) The attempted catching, taking, or harvesting of fish;
    (3) Any other activity which can reasonably be expected to result in 
the catching, taking, or harvesting of fish;
    (4) Any operations at sea in support of, or in preparation for, any 
activity described in paragraphs (1) through (3) of this section.
    (5) Fishing does not include any scientific research activity which 
is conducted by a scientific research vessel.
    Fishing industry for the purposes of this part, means the broad 
sector of the national economy comprised of persons or entities that are 
engaged in or substantially associated with fishing, including 
aquaculture, charter operators, guides, harvesters, outfitters, 
processors, suppliers, among others, without regard to the location of 
their activity or whether they are engaged in fishing for wild stocks or 
aquaculture.
    Guarantee means a guarantor's contractual promise to repay 
indebtedness if an obligor fails to repay as agreed.
    Guarantee fee means one percent of a guaranteed note's average 
annual unpaid principal balance.
    Guaranteed note means a promissory note from an obligor to a 
noteholder, the repayment of which the United States guarantees.
    IFQ means Individual Fishing Quota, which is a Federal permit under 
a limited access system to harvest a quantity of fish, expressed by a 
unit or units representing a percentage of the total allowable catch of 
a fishery that may be received or held for exclusive use by a person. 
IFQ does not include community development quotas.
    Noteholder means a guaranteed note payee.
    Obligor means a party primarily liable for payment of the principal 
of or

[[Page 66]]

interest on an obligation, used interchangeably with the terms ``note 
payor'' or ``notemaker.''
    Origination year means the year in which an application for a loan 
is accepted for processing.
    Program means the Fisheries Finance Program, Financial Services 
Division, National Marine Fisheries Service, National Oceanic and 
Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce.
    Project means:
    (1) The refinancing or construction of a new fishing vessel or the 
financing or refinancing of a fishery or aquaculture facility or the 
refurbishing or purchase of an existing vessel or facility, including, 
but not limited to, architectural, engineering, inspection, delivery, 
outfitting, and interest costs, as well as the cost of any consulting 
contract the Program requires;
    (2) The purchase or refinance of any limited access privilege, IFQ, 
fisheries access right, permit, or other fisheries harvest 
authorization, for which the actual cost of the purchase of such 
authorization would be eligible under the Act for direct loans;
    (3) Activities (other than fishing capacity reduction, as set forth 
in part 600.1000 of this title) that assist in the transition to reduced 
fishing capacity;
    (4) Technologies or upgrades designed to improve collection and 
reporting of fishery-dependent data, to reduce bycatch, to improve 
selectivity or reduce adverse impacts of fishing gear, or to improve 
safety; or
    (5) Any other activity that helps develop the U.S. fishing industry, 
including, but not limited to, measures designed or intended to improve 
a vessel's fuel efficiency, to increase fisheries exports, to develop an 
underutilized fishery, or to enhance financial stability, financial 
performance, growth, productivity, or any other business attribute 
related to fishing or fisheries.
    RAM means the Restricted Access Management division in the Alaska 
Regional Office of NMFS or the office that undertakes the duties of this 
division to issue or manage quota shares.
    Refinancing means newer debt that either replaces older debt or 
reimburses applicants for previous expenditures.
    Refinancing/assumption fee means a one time fee assessed on the 
principal amount of an existing FFP note to be refinanced or assumed.
    Refurbishing means any reconstruction, reconditioning, or other 
improvement of existing vessels or facilities, but does not include 
routine repairs or activities characterized as maintenance.
    Security documents mean all documents related to the collateral 
securing the U.S. Note's repayment and all other assurances, 
undertakings, and contractual arrangements associated with financing or 
guarantees provided by NMFS.
    Underutilized fishery means any stock of fish (a) harvested below 
its optimum yield or (b) limited to a level of harvest or cultivation 
below that corresponding to optimum yield by the lack of aggregate 
facilities.
    U.S. means the United States of America and, for citizenship 
purposes, includes the fifty states, Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, 
American Samoa, the Territory of the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, the 
Republic of the Marshal Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, the 
Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and any other 
commonwealth, territory, or possession of the United States, or any 
political subdivision of any of them.
    U.S. Note means a promissory note payable by the obligor to the 
United States.
    Useful life means the period during which project property will, as 
determined by the Program, remain economically productive.
    Vessel means any vessel documented under U.S. law and used for 
fishing.
    Wise use means the development, advancement, management, 
conservation, and protection of fishery resources, that is not 
inconsistent with the National Standards for Fishery Conservation and 
Management (16 U.S.C. 1851) and any other relevant criteria, as may be 
specified in applicable statutes, regulations, Fishery Management Plans, 
or NMFS guidance.

[[Page 67]]



Sec. 253.11  General FFP credit standards and requirements.

    (a) Principal. Unless explicitly stated otherwise in these 
regulations or applicable statutes, the amount of any loan may not 
exceed 80 percent of actual cost, as such term is described in 
Sec. 253.16; provided that the Program may approve an amount that is 
less, in accordance with its credit determination.
    (b) Interest rate. Each loan's annual interest rate will be 2 
percent greater than the U.S. Department of Treasury's cost of borrowing 
public funds of an equivalent maturity at the time the loan closes.
    (c) Ability and experience requirements. An obligor and the majority 
of its principals must demonstrate the ability, experience, resources, 
character, reputation, and other qualifications the Program deems 
necessary for successfully operating the project property and protecting 
the Program's interest in the project.
    (d) Lending restrictions. Unless it can document that unique or 
extraordinary circumstances exist, the Program will not provide 
financing:
    (1) For venture capital purposes; or
    (2) To an applicant who cannot document successful fishing industry 
ability and experience of a duration, degree, and nature that the 
Program deems necessary to successfully repay the requested loan.
    (e) Income and expense projections. The Program, using conservative 
income and expense projections for the project property's operation, 
must determine that projected net earnings can service all debt, 
properly maintain the project property, and protect the Program's 
interest against risks of loss, including the industry's cyclical 
economics.
    (f) Working capital. The Program must determine that a project has 
sufficient initial working capital to achieve net earnings projections, 
fund all foreseeable contingencies, and protect the Program's interest 
in the project. In making its determination, the Program will use a 
conservative assessment of an applicant's financial condition, and at 
the Program's discretion, some portion of projected working capital 
needs may be met by something other than current assets minus 
liabilities (i.e., by a line or letter of credit, non-current assets 
readily capable of generating working capital, a guarantor with 
sufficient financial resources, etc.).
    (g) Audited financial statements. Audited financial statements will 
ordinarily be required for any obligor with large or financially complex 
operations, as determined by the program, whose financial condition the 
Program believes cannot be otherwise assessed with reasonable certainty.
    (h) Consultant services. Expert consulting services may be necessary 
to help the Program assess a project's economic, technical, or financial 
feasibility. The Program will notify the applicant if an expert is 
required. The Program will select and employ the necessary consultant, 
but require the applicant to reimburse the Program for any fees charged 
by the consultant. In the event that an application requires expert 
consulting services, the loan will not be closed until the applicant 
fully reimburses the Program for the consulting fees. This cost may, at 
the Program's discretion, be included in the amount of the note. For a 
declined application, the Program may reimburse itself from the 
application fee as described in Sec. 253.12, including any portion known 
as the commitment fee that could otherwise be refunded to the applicant.
    (i) Property inspections. The Program may require adequate condition 
and valuation inspection of all property used as collateral as the basis 
for assessing the property's worth and suitability for lending. The 
Program may also require these at specified periods during the life of 
the loan. These must be conducted by competent and impartial inspectors 
acceptable to the Program. Inspection cost(s) will be at an applicant's 
expense. Those occurring before application approval may be included in 
actual cost, as actual cost is described in Sec. 253.16.
    (j) Collateral. The Program shall have first lien(s) on all primary 
project property pledged as collateral. The Program, at its discretion, 
may request additional collateral and will consider any additional 
collateral in its credit determinations.
    (k) No additional liens. All primary project property pledged as 
collateral,

[[Page 68]]

including any additional collateral, shall be free of additional liens, 
unless the Program, at the request of the applicant, expressly waives 
this requirement in writing.
    (l) General FFP credit standards apply. Unless explicitly stated 
otherwise in these rules, all FFP direct lending is subject to the above 
general credit standards and requirements found in Secs. 253.12 through 
253.30. The Program may adjust collateral, guarantee and other 
requirements to reflect individual credit risks.
    (m) Adverse legal proceedings. The Program, at its own discretion, 
may decline or hold in abeyance any loan approval or disbursement(s) to 
any applicant found to have outstanding lawsuits, citations, hearings, 
liabilities, appeals, sanctions or other pending actions whose negative 
outcome could significantly impact, in the opinion of the Program, the 
financial circumstances of the applicant.



Sec. 253.12  Credit application.

    (a) Applicant. (1) An applicant must be a U.S. citizen and be 
eligible to document a vessel in the coastwise trade: and
    (2) Only the legal title holder of project property, or its parent 
company (or the lessee of an appropriate long-term lease) may apply for 
a loan; and
    (3) An applicant and the majority of its principals must generally 
have the ability, experience, resources, character, reputation, and 
other qualifications the Program deems necessary for successfully 
operating, utilizing, or carrying out the project and protecting the 
Program's interest; and
    (4) Applicants should apply to the appropriate NMFS Regional 
Financial Services Branch to be considered.
    (b) Application fee. An application fee of 0.5 percent of the dollar 
amount of an application is due when the application is formally 
accepted. Upon submission, 50 percent of the application fee, known as 
the ``filing fee,'' is non-refundable; the remainder, known as the 
``commitment fee,'' may be refunded if the Program declines an 
application or an applicant withdraws its application before the Program 
issues an AIP letter, as described in Sec. 253.13(e). The Program will 
not issue an AIP letter if any of the application fee remains unpaid. No 
portion of the application fee shall be refunded once the Program issues 
an AIP letter.
    (c) False statement. A false statement on an application is grounds 
for denial or termination of funds, grounds for possible punishment by a 
fine or imprisonment as provided in 18 U.S.C. 1001 and an event of a 
security default.



Sec. 253.13  Initial investigation and approval.

    (a) The Program shall undertake a due diligence investigation of 
every application it receives to determine if, in the Program's sole 
judgment, the application is both:
    (1) Eligible for a loan because it meets applicable loan 
requirements; and
    (2) Qualified for a loan because the project is deemed an acceptable 
credit risk.
    (b) The Program will approve eligible and qualified applicants by 
evaluating the information obtained during the application and 
investigation process.
    (c) Among other investigations, applicants may be subject to a 
background check, fisheries violations check and credit review. 
Background checks are intended to reveal if any key individuals 
associated with the applicant have been convicted of or are presently 
facing criminal charges such as fraud, theft, perjury, or other matters 
which significantly reflect on the applicant's honesty or financial 
integrity.
    (d) The Program, at its own discretion, may decline or delay 
approval of any loans or disbursements to any applicant found to have 
outstanding citations, notices of violations, or other pending legal 
actions or unresolved claims.
    (e) The Program may place any terms and conditions on such approvals 
that the Program, in its sole discretion, deems necessary and 
appropriate.
    (f) Credit decision. (1) The Program shall issue to approved 
applicants an AIP letter, which shall describe the terms and conditions 
of the loan, including (but not limited to) loan amounts, maturities, 
additional collateral, repayment sources or guarantees.

[[Page 69]]

Such terms and conditions are at the Program's sole discretion and shall 
also be incorporated in security documents that the Program prepares. An 
applicant's non-acceptance of any terms and conditions may result in an 
applicant's disqualification.
    (2) Any application the Program deems ineligible or unqualified will 
be declined.



Sec. 253.14  Loan documents.

    (a) U.S. Note. (1) The U.S. Note will be in the form the Program 
prescribes.
    (2) The U.S. Note evidences the obligor's indebtedness to the United 
States.
    (i) For financing approved after October 11, 1996, the U.S. Note 
evidences the obligor's actual indebtedness to the U.S.; and
    (ii) For financing originating before October 11, 1996, that 
continues to be associated with a Guaranteed Note, the U.S. Note shall 
evidence the obligor's actual indebtedness to the U.S. upon the 
Program's payment of any or all of the sums due under the Guaranteed 
Note or otherwise disbursed on the obligor's behalf.
    (iii) The U.S. Note will, among other things, contain provisions to 
add to its principal balance all amounts the Program advances or incurs, 
including additional interest charges and costs incurred to protect its 
interest or accommodate the obligor.
    (3) The U.S. Note shall be assignable by the Program, at its sole 
discretion.
    (b) Security documents. (1) Each security document will be in the 
form the Program prescribes.
    (2) The Program will, at a minimum, require the pledge of adequate 
collateral, generally in the form of a security interest or mortgage 
against all property associated with a project or security as otherwise 
required by the Program.
    (3) The Program will require such other security as it deems 
necessary and appropriate, given the circumstances of each obligor and 
the project.
    (4) The security documents will, among other things, contain 
provisions to secure the repayment of all additional amounts the Program 
advances or incurs to protect its interest or accommodate the obligor, 
including additional interest charges and fees.



Sec. 253.15  Recourse against parties.

    (a) Form. Recourse by borrowers or guarantors may be by a repayment 
guarantee, irrevocable letter of credit, additional tangible or 
intangible collateral, or other form acceptable to the Program.
    (b) Principals accountable. The principal parties in interest, who 
ultimately stand most to benefit from the project, will ordinarily be 
held financially accountable for the project's performance. The Program 
may require recourse against:
    (1) All major shareholders of a closely-held corporate obligor;
    (2) The parent corporation of a subsidiary corporate obligor;
    (3) The related business entities of the obligor if the Program 
determines that the obligor lacks substantial pledged assets other than 
the project property or is otherwise lacking in any credit factor 
required to approve the application;
    (4) Any or all major limited partners;
    (5) Non-obligor spouses of applicants or obligors in community 
property states; and/or
    (6) Against any others it deems necessary to protect its interest.
    (c) Recourse against parties. Should the Program determine that a 
secondary means of repayment from other sources is necessary (including 
the net worth of parties other than the obligor), the Program may 
require secured or unsecured recourse against any such secondary 
repayment sources.
    (d) Recourse unavailable. Where appropriate recourse is unavailable, 
the conservatively projected net liquidating value of the obligor's 
assets (as such assets are pledged to the Program) must, in the 
Program's credit judgment, substantially exceed all projected Program 
exposure or other risks of loss.



Sec. 253.16  Actual cost.

    Actual cost shall be determined as follows:
    (a) The actual cost of a vessel shall be the sum of:
    (1) The total cost of the project depreciated on a straight-line 
basis, over

[[Page 70]]

the project property's useful life, using a 10-percent salvage value; 
and
    (2) The current market value of appurtenant limited access 
privileges or transferable limited access privileges vested in the name 
of the obligor, the subject vessel or their owners, provided that such 
privileges are utilized by or aboard the subject vessel and will be 
pledged as collateral for the subject FFP financing.
    (b) The actual cost of a facility shall be the sum of:
    (1) The total cost of the project, not including land, depreciated 
on a straightline basis over the Project Property's useful life, using a 
10-percent salvage value;
    (2) The current market value of the land that will be pledged as 
collateral for the subject FFP financing, provided that such land is 
utilized by the facility; and
    (3) The net present value of the payments due under a long term 
lease of land or marine use rights, provided that they meet the 
following requirements:
    (i) The project property must be located at such leased space or 
directly use such marine use rights;
    (ii) Such lease or marine use right must have a duration the Program 
deems sufficient; and
    (iii) The lease or marine use right must be assigned to the Program 
such that the Program may foreclose and transfer such lease to another 
party.
    (c) The actual cost of a transferable limited access privilege shall 
be determined as follows:
    (1) For financing the purchase of limited access privileges, the 
actual cost shall be the purchase cost.
    (2) For refinancing limited access privileges, the actual cost shall 
be the current market value.
    (d) The actual cost of any Project that includes any combination of 
items described in paragraphs (a), (b) or (c) of this section shall be 
the sum of such calculations.



Sec. 253.17  Insurance.

    (a) All insurable collateral property and other risks shall be 
continuously insured so long as any balance of principal or interest on 
a Program loan or guarantee remains outstanding.
    (b) Insurers must be acceptable to the Program.
    (c) Insurance must be in such forms and amounts and against such 
risks the Program deems necessary to protect the United States' 
interest.
    (d) Insurance must be endorsed to include the requirements the 
Program deems necessary and appropriate.
    (1) Normally and as appropriate, the Program will be named as an 
additional insured, mortgagee, or loss payee, for the amount of its 
interest; any waiver of this requirement must be in writing;
    (2) Cancellation will require adequate advance written notice;
    (3) The Program will be adequately protected against other insureds' 
breaches of policy warranties, negligence, omission, etc., in the case 
of marine insurance, vessel seaworthiness will be required;
    (4) The insured must provide coverage for any other risk or casualty 
the Program may require.



Sec. 253.18  Closing.

    (a) Approval in principle letters. Every closing will be in strict 
accordance with a final approval in principle letter.
    (b) Contracts. Promissory notes, security documents, and any other 
documents the Program may require will be on standard Program forms that 
may not be altered without Program written approval. The Program will 
ordinarily prepare all contracts, except certain pledges involving real 
property or other matters involving local law, which will be prepared by 
each obligor's attorney at the direction and approval of the Program.
    (c) Additional requirements. At its discretion the Program may 
require services from applicant's attorneys, other contractors or 
agents. Real property services required from an applicant's attorney or 
agent may include, but are not limited to: Title search, title 
insurance, mortgage and other document preparation, document execution 
and recording, escrow and disbursement, and legal opinions and other 
assurances. The Program will notify the applicant in advance if any such 
services

[[Page 71]]

are required of the applicant's attorneys, contractors or other agents. 
Applicants are responsible for all attorney's fees, as well as those of 
any other private contractor. Attorneys and other contractors must be 
satisfactory to the Program.
    (d) Closing schedules. The Program will not be liable for adverse 
interest-rate fluctuations, loss of commitments, or other consequences 
of an inability by any of the parties to meet the closing schedule.



Sec. 253.19  Dual-use CCF.

    The Program may require the pledge of a CCF account or annual 
deposits of some portion of the project property's net income into a 
dual-use CCF. A dual-use CCF provides the normal CCF tax-deferral 
benefits, but also gives the Program control of CCF withdrawals, 
recourse against CCF deposits, ensures an emergency refurbishing reserve 
(tax-deferred) for project property, and provides additional collateral.



Sec. 253.20  Fees.

    (a) Application fee. See Secs. 253.10 and 253.12(b).
    (b) Guarantee fee. For existing Guaranteed Loans, an annual 
guarantee fee will be due in advance and will be based on the guaranteed 
note's repayment provisions for the prospective year. The first annual 
guarantee fee is due at guarantee closing. Each subsequent guarantee fee 
is due and payable on the guarantee closing's anniversary date. Each is 
fully earned when due, and shall not subsequently be refunded for any 
reason.
    (c) Refinancing or assumption fee. The Program will assess a fee of 
one quarter of one (1) percent of the note to be refinanced or assumed. 
This fee is due upon application for refinancing or assumption of a 
guaranteed or direct loan. Upon submission, the fee shall be non-
refundable. The Program may waive a refinancing or assumption fee's 
payment when the refinancing or assumption's primary purpose will 
benefit the United States.
    (d) Where payable. Fees are payable by check to ``U.S. Department of 
Commerce/NOAA.'' Other than those collected at application or closing, 
fees are payable by mailing checks to the ``U.S. Department of Commerce, 
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Marine 
Fisheries Service,'' to such address as the Program may designate. To 
ensure proper crediting, each check should include the official case 
number the Program assigns.



Sec. 253.21  Demand by guaranteed noteholder and payment.

    Every demand by the guaranteed noteholder must be delivered in 
writing to the Program and must include the noteholder's certified 
record of the date and amount of each payment made on the guaranteed 
note and the manner of its application. The only period during which a 
guaranteed noteholder can make demand for a payment default begins on 
the thirty-first day of the payment default and continues through the 
ninetieth day of a payment default. The noteholder must possess evidence 
of the demand's timely delivery.



Sec. 253.22  Program operating guidelines.

    The Program may issue policy and administrative guidelines, as the 
need arises.



Sec. 253.23  Default and liquidation.

    Upon default under the terms of any note, guarantee, security 
agreement, mortgage, or other security document the Program shall take 
remedial actions including, but not limited to, where appropriate, 
retaking or arrest of collateral, foreclosure, restructuring, debarment, 
referral for debt collection, or liquidation as it deems best able to 
protect the U.S. Government's interest.



Sec. 253.24  Enforcement violations and adverse actions.

    (a) Compliance with applicable law. All applicants and Program 
participants shall comply with applicable law.
    (b) Applicant disqualification. (1) Any issuance of any citation or 
Notice of Violation and Assessment by NMFS enforcement or other 
enforcement authority may constitute grounds for the Program to:
    (i) Delay application or approval processing;
    (ii) Delay loan closing;

[[Page 72]]

    (iii) Delay disbursement of loan proceeds;
    (iv) Disqualify an applicant or obligor; or
    (v) Declare default.
    (2) The Program will not approve loans or disburse funds to any 
applicant found to have an outstanding, final and unappealable fisheries 
fine or other unresolved penalty until either: Such fine is paid or 
penalty has been resolved; or the applicant enters into an agreement to 
pay the penalty and makes all payments or installments as they are due. 
Failure to pay or resolve any such fine or penalty in a reasonable 
period of time will result in the applicant's disqualification.
    (c) Foreclosure in addition to other penalties. In the event that a 
person with an outstanding balance on a Program loan or guarantee 
violates any ownership, lease, use, or other provision of applicable 
law, such person may be subject to foreclosure of property, in addition 
to any fines, sanctions, or other penalties.



Sec. 253.25  Other administrative requirements.

    (a) Debt Collection Act. In accordance with the provisions of the 
Debt Collection Improvement Act of 1996, a person may not obtain any 
Federal financial assistance in the form of a loan (other than a 
disaster loan) or loan guarantee if the person has an outstanding debt 
(other than a debt under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986) with any 
Federal agency which is in a delinquent status, as determined under 
standards prescribed by the Secretary of the Treasury.
    (b) Certifications. Applicants must submit a completed Form CD-511, 
``Certifications Regarding Debarment, Suspension and Other 
Responsibility Matters; Drug-Free Workplace Requirements and Lobbying,'' 
or its equivalent or successor form, if any.
    (c) Taxpayer identification. An applicant classified for tax 
purposes as an individual, limited liability company, partnership, 
proprietorship, corporation, or legal entity is required to submit along 
with the application a taxpayer identification number (TIN) (social 
security number, employer identification number as applicable, or 
registered foreign organization number). Recipients who either fail to 
provide their TIN or provide an incorrect TIN may have application 
processing or funding suspended until the requirement is met.
    (d) Audit inquiry. An audit of a Program loan may be conducted at 
any time. Auditors, selected at the discretion of the Program or other 
agency of the United States, shall have access to any and all books, 
documents, papers and records of the obligor or any other party to a 
financing that the auditor(s) deem(s) pertinent, whether written, 
printed, recorded, produced or reproduced by any mechanical, magnetic or 
other process or medium.
    (e) Paperwork Reduction Act. The application requirements contained 
in these rules have been approved under OMB control number 0648-0012. 
The applications for the halibut/sablefish QS crew member eligibility 
certificate have been approved under OMB control number 0648-0272. 
Notwithstanding any other provisions of law, no person is required to 
respond to, nor shall any person be subject to a penalty for failure to 
comply with, a collection of information subject to the requirements of 
the Paperwork Reduction Act unless that collection of information 
displays a currently valid OMB control number.



Sec. 253.26  Traditional loans.

    (a) Eligible projects. Financing or refinancing up to 80 percent of 
a project's actual cost shall be available to any citizen who is 
determined to be eligible and qualified under the Act and these rules, 
except--
    (1) The Program will not finance the cost of new vessel 
construction.
    (2) The Program will not finance a vessel refurbishing project that 
materially increases an existing vessel's harvesting capacity.
    (b) Financing or refinancing. (1) Projects, other than those 
specified in paragraphs (a) (1) and (a)(2) of this section, may be 
financed, as well as refinanced.
    (2) Notwithstanding paragraph (a)(1) of this section, the Program 
may refinance the construction cost of a vessel whose construction cost 
has already been financed (or otherwise paid) prior to the submission of 
a loan application.

[[Page 73]]

    (3) Notwithstanding paragraph (a)(2) of this section, the Program 
may refinance the refurbishing cost of a vessel whose initial 
refurbishing cost has already been financed (or otherwise paid) prior to 
the submission of a loan application.
    (4) The Program may finance or refinance the purchase or 
refurbishment of any vessel or facility for which the Secretary has:
    (i) Accelerated and/or paid outstanding debts or obligations;
    (ii) Acquired; or
    (iii) Sold at foreclosure.
    (c) Existing vessels and facilities. The Program may finance the 
purchase of an existing vessel or existing fishery facility if such 
vessel or facility will be refurbished in the United States and will be 
used in the fishing industry.
    (d) Fisheries modernization. Notwithstanding any of this part, the 
Program may finance or refinance any:
    (1) Activities that assist in the transition to reduced fishing 
capacity; or
    (2) Technologies or upgrades designed to:
    (i) Improve collection and reporting of fishery-dependent data;
    (ii) Reduce bycatch;
    (iii) Improve selectivity;
    (iv) Reduce adverse impacts of fishing gear; or
    (v) Improve safety.
    (e) Guaranty transition. Upon application by the obligor, any 
guaranteed loans originated prior to October 11, 1996, may be refinanced 
as direct loans, regardless of the original purpose of the guaranteed 
loan.
    (f) Maturity. Maturity may not exceed 25 years, but shall not exceed 
the project property's useful life. The Program, at its sole discretion, 
may set a shorter maturity period.
    (g) Credit standards. Traditional loans are subject to all Program 
general credit standards and requirements. Collateral, guarantee and 
other requirements may be adjusted in accordance with the Program's 
assessment of individual credit risks.



Sec. 253.27  IFQ financing.

    The Program may finance or refinance the project cost of purchasing, 
including the reimbursement of obligors for expenditures previously made 
for purchasing, individual fishing quotas in accordance with the 
applicable sections of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and 
Management Act or any other statute.



Sec. 253.28  Halibut sablefish IFQ loans.

    (a) Specific definitions. For the purposes of this section, the 
following definitions apply:
    (1) Entry-level fishermen means fishermen who do not own any IFQ in 
the year they apply for a loan.
    (2) Fishermen who fish from small vessels means fishermen wishing to 
purchase IFQ for use on Category B, Category C, or Category D vessels, 
but who do not own, in whole or in part, any Category A or Category B 
vessels, as such vessels are defined in 50 CFR 679.40(a)(5) of this 
title.
    (3) Halibut sablefish quota share means a halibut or sablefish 
permit, the face amount of which is used as the basis for the annual 
calculation of a person's halibut or sablefish IFQ, also abbreviated as 
``HSQS'' or ``halibut/sablefish QS.''
    (4) Halibut/Sablefish IFQ means the annual catch limit of halibut or 
sablefish that may be harvested by a person who is lawfully allocated 
halibut or sablefish quota share, a harvest privilege for a specific 
portion of the total allowable catch of halibut or sablefish.
    (b) Entry level fishermen. The Program may finance up to 80 percent 
of the cost of purchasing HSQS by an entry level fisherman who:
    (1) Does not own any halibut/sablefish QS during the origination 
year;
    (2) Applies for a loan to purchase a quantity of halibut/sablefish 
QS that is not greater than the equivalent of 8,000 lb. (3,628.7 kg) of 
IFQ during the origination year;
    (3) Possesses the appropriate transfer eligibility documentation 
duly issued by RAM for HSQS;
    (4) Intends to be present aboard the vessel, as may be required by 
applicable regulations; and
    (5) Meets all other Program eligibility, qualification, lending and 
credit requirements.
    (c) Fishermen fishing from small vessels. The Program may finance up 
to 80 percent of the cost of purchasing HSQS by a fisherman who fishes 
from a small

[[Page 74]]

vessel, provided that any such fisherman shall:
    (1) Apply for a loan to purchase halibut or sablefish QS for use on 
vessel Categories B, C, or D, as defined under 50 CFR 679.40(a)(5) of 
this title;
    (2) Not own an aggregate quantity of halibut/sablefish QS (including 
the loan QS) of more than the equivalent of 50,000 lb. (22,679.6 kg) of 
IFQ during the origination year;
    (3) Not own, in whole or in part, directly or indirectly (including 
through stock or other ownership interest) any vessel of the type that 
would have been assigned Category A or Category B HSQS under 50 CFR 
679.40(a)(5);
    (4) Possess the appropriate transfer eligibility documentation duly 
issued by the RAM for HSQS;
    (5) Intend to be present aboard the vessel, as may be required by 
applicable regulations, as IFQ associated with halibut/sablefish QS 
financed by the loan is harvested; and
    (6) Meet all other Program eligibility, qualification, lending and 
credit requirements.
    (d) Refinancing. (1) The Program may refinance any existing debts 
associated with HSQS an applicant currently holds, provided that--
    (i) The HSQS being refinanced would have been eligible for Program 
financing at the time the applicant purchased it, and
    (ii) The applicant meets the Program's applicable lending 
requirements.
    (2) The refinancing is in an amount up to 80 percent of HSQS' 
current market value; however, the Program will not disburse any amount 
that exceeds the outstanding principal balance, plus accrued interest 
(if any), of the existing HSQS debt being refinanced.
    (3) In the event that the current market value of HSQS and principal 
loan balance do not meet the 80 percent requirement in paragraph (d)(2) 
of this section, applicants seeking refinancing may be required to 
provide additional down payment.
    (e) Maturity. Loan maturity may not exceed 25 years, but may be 
shorter depending on credit and other considerations.
    (f) Repayment. Repayment will be by equal quarterly installments of 
principal and interest.
    (g) Security. Although quota share(s) will be the primary collateral 
for a HSQS loan, the Program may require additional security pledges to 
maintain the priority of the Program's security interest. The Program, 
at its option, may also require all parties with significant ownership 
interests to personally guarantee loan repayment for any applicant that 
is a corporation, partnership, or other entity. Subject to the Program's 
credit risk determination, some projects may require additional 
security, collateral, or credit enhancement.
    (h) Crew member transfer eligibility certification. The Program will 
accept RAM certification as proof that applicants are eligible to hold 
HSQS. The application of any person determined by RAM to be unable to 
receive such certification will be declined. Applicants who fail to 
obtain appropriate transfer eligibility certification within 45 working 
days of the date of application may lose their processing priority.
    (i) Program credit standards. HSQS loans, regardless of purpose, are 
subject to all Program general credit standards and requirements. 
Collateral, guarantee and other requirements may be adjusted to 
individual credit risks.



Sec. 253.29  CDQ loans.

    (a) FFP actions. The Program may finance or refinance up to 80 
percent of a project's actual cost.
    (b) Eligible projects. Eligible projects include the purchase of all 
or part of ownership interests in fishing or processing vessels, 
shoreside fish processing facilities, permits, quota, and cooperative 
rights in any of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands fisheries.
    (c) Eligible entities. The following communities, in accordance with 
applicable law and regulations are eligible to participate in the loan 
program:
    (1) The villages of Akutan, Atka, False Pass, Nelson Lagoon, 
Nikolski, and Saint George through the Aleutian Pribilof Island 
Community Development Association.
    (2) The villages of Aleknagik, Clark's Point, Dillingham, Egegik, 
Ekuk,

[[Page 75]]

Ekwok, King Salmon/Savonoski, Levelock, Manokotak, Naknek, Pilot Point, 
Port Heiden, Portage Creek, South Naknek, Togiak, Twin Hills, and 
Ugashik through the Bristol Bay Economic Development Corporation.
    (3) The village of Saint Paul through the Central Bering Sea 
Fishermen's Association.
    (4) The villages of Chefornak, Chevak, Eek, Goodnews Bay, Hooper 
Bay, Kipnuk, Kongiganak, Kwigillingok, Mekoryuk, Napakiak, Napaskiak, 
Newtok, Nightmute, Oscarville, Platinum, Quinhagak, Scammon Bay, Toksook 
Bay, Tuntutuliak, and Tununak through the Coastal Villages Region Fund.
    (5) The villages of Brevig Mission, Diomede, Elim, Gambell, Golovin, 
Koyuk, Nome, Saint Michael, Savoonga, Shaktoolik, Stebbins, Teller, 
Unalakleet, Wales, and White Mountain through the Norton Sound Economic 
Development Corporation.
    (6) The villages of Alakanuk, Emmonak, Grayling, Kotlik, Mountain 
Village, and Nunam Iqua through the Yukon Delta Fisheries Development 
Association.
    (7) Any new groups established by applicable law.
    (d) Loan terms. (1) CDQ loans may have terms up to thirty years, but 
shall not exceed the project property's useful life. The Program, at its 
sole discretion, may set a shorter maturity period.
    (2) CDQ loans are subject to all Program general credit standards 
and requirements. Collateral, guarantee and other requirements may be 
adjusted to individual credit risks.



Sec. 253.30  Crab IFQ loans.

    (a) Specific definitions. For the purposes of this section, the 
following definitions apply:
    (1) Crab means those crab species managed under the Fishery 
Management Plan for Bering Sea/Aleutian Island (BSAI) King and Tanner 
Crab.
    (2) Crab FMP means the Fishery Management Plan for BSAI King and 
Tanner Crab.
    (3) Crab quota share means a BSAI King and Tanner Crab permit, the 
base amount of which is used as a basis for the annual calculation of a 
person's Crab IFQ, also abbreviated as ``Crab QS.''
    (b) Crab captains or crewmen. The Program may finance up to 80 
percent of the cost of purchasing Crab QS by a citizen:
    (1) Who is or was:
    (i) A captain of a crab fishing vessel, or
    (ii) A crew member of a crab fishing vessel;
    (2) Who has been issued the appropriate documentation of eligibility 
by RAM;
    (3) Whose aggregate holdings of QS will not exceed any limit on Crab 
QS holdings that may be in effect in the Crab FMP implementing 
regulations or applicable statutes in effect at the time of loan 
closing; and will not hold either individually or collectively, based on 
the initial QS pool, as published in 50 CFR part 680, Table 8; and
    (4) Who, at the time of initial application, meets all other 
applicable eligibility requirements to fish for crab or hold Crab QS 
contained in the Crab FMP implementing regulations or applicable 
statutes in effect at the time of loan closing.
    (c) Refinancing. (1) The Program may refinance any existing debts 
associated with Crab QS that an applicant currently holds, provided 
that:
    (i) The Crab QS being refinanced would have been eligible for 
Program financing at the time the applicant purchased it;
    (ii) The applicant meets the Program's applicable lending 
requirements; and
    (iii) The applicant would meet the requirements found in the Crab 
FMP implementing regulations at the time any such refinancing loan would 
close.
    (2) The Program may refinance an amount up to 80 percent of Crab 
QS's current market value; however, the Program will not disburse any 
amount that exceeds the outstanding principal balance, plus accrued 
interest (if any), of the existing Crab QS debt being refinanced.
    (3) In the event that the current market value of Crab QS and 
current principal balance do not meet the 80 percent requirement in 
paragraph (c)(2) of

[[Page 76]]

this section, applicants seeking refinancing may be required to provide 
additional down payment.
    (d) Maturity. Loan maturity may not exceed 25 years, but may be 
shorter depending on credit and other considerations.
    (e) Repayment. Repayment schedules will be set by the loan 
documents.
    (f) Security. Although the quota share will be the primary 
collateral for a Crab QS loan, the Program may require additional 
security pledges to maintain the priority of the Program's security 
interest. The Program, at its option, may also require all parties with 
significant ownership interests to personally guarantee loan repayment 
for any applicant that is a corporation, partnership, or other entity. 
Subject to the Program's credit risk determination, some projects may 
require additional security, collateral, or credit enhancement.
    (g) Crew member transfer eligibility certification. The Program will 
accept RAM transfer eligibility certification as proof that applicants 
are eligible to hold Crab QS. The application of any person determined 
by RAM to be unable to receive such certification will be declined. 
Applicants who fail to obtain appropriate transfer eligibility 
certification within 45 working days of the date of application may lose 
their processing priority.
    (h) Crab Quota Share Ownership Limitation. A program obligor must 
comply with all applicable maximum amounts, as may be established by 
NMFS regulations, policy or North Pacific Fishery Management Council 
action.
    (i) Program credit standards. Crab QS loans are subject to all 
Program general credit standards and requirements. Collateral, guarantee 
and other requirements may be adjusted to individual credit risks.



Secs. 253.31-253.49  [Reserved]



                 Subpart C_Interjurisdictional Fisheries



Sec. 253.50  Definitions.

    The terms used in this subpart have the following meanings:
    Act means the Interjurisdictional Fisheries Act of 1986, Public Law 
99-659 (Title III).
    Adopt means to implement an interstate fishery management plan by 
State action or regulation.
    Commercial fishery failure means a serious disruption of a fishery 
resource affecting present or future productivity due to natural or 
undetermined causes. It does not include either:
    (1) The inability to harvest or sell raw fish or manufactured and 
processed fishery merchandise; or
    (2) Compensation for economic loss suffered by any segment of the 
fishing industry as the result of a resource disaster.
    Enforcement agreement means a written agreement, signed and dated, 
between a state agency and either the Secretary of the Interior or 
Secretary of Commerce, or both, to enforce Federal and state laws 
pertaining to the protection of interjurisdictional fishery resources.
    Federal fishery management plan means a plan developed and approved 
under the Magnuson Fishery Conservation and Management Act (16 U.S.C. 
1801 et seq.).
    Fisheries management means all activities concerned with 
conservation, restoration, enhancement, or utilization of fisheries 
resources, including research, data collection and analysis, monitoring, 
assessment, information dissemination, regulation, and enforcement.
    Fishery resource means finfish, mollusks, and crustaceans, and any 
form of marine or Great Lakes animal or plant life, including habitat, 
other than marine mammals and birds.
    Interjurisdictional fishery resource means:
    (1) A fishery resource for which a fishery occurs in waters under 
the jurisdiction of one or more states and the U.S. Exclusive Economic 
Zone; or
    (2) A fishery resource for which an interstate or a Federal fishery 
management plan exists; or
    (3) A fishery resource which migrates between the waters under the 
jurisdiction of two or more States bordering on the Great Lakes.

[[Page 77]]

    Interstate Commission means a commission or other administrative 
body established by an interstate compact.
    Interstate compact means a compact that has been entered into by two 
or more states, established for purposes of conserving and managing 
fishery resources throughout their range, and consented to and approved 
by Congress.
    Interstate Fisheries Research Program means research conducted by 
two or more state agencies under a formal interstate agreement.
    Interstate fishery management plan means a plan for managing a 
fishery resource developed and adopted by the member states of an 
Interstate Marine Fisheries Commission, and contains information 
regarding the status of the fishery resource and fisheries, and 
recommends actions to be taken by the States to conserve and manage the 
fishery resource.
    Landed means the first point of offloading fishery resources.
    NMFS Regional Director means the Director of any one of the five 
National Marine Fisheries Service regions.
    Project means an undertaking or a proposal for research in support 
of management of an interjurisdictional fishery resource or an 
interstate fishery management plan.
    Research means work or investigative study, designed to acquire 
knowledge of fisheries resources and their habitat.
    Secretary means the Secretary of Commerce or his/her designee.
    State means each of the several states, the District of Columbia, 
the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, American Samoa, the Virgin Islands, 
Guam, or the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.
    State agency means any department, agency, commission, or official 
of a state authorized under the laws of the State to regulate commercial 
fisheries or enforce laws relating to commercial fisheries.
    Value means the monetary worth of fishery resources used in 
developing the apportionment formula, which is equal to the price paid 
at the first point of landing.
    Volume means the weight of the fishery resource as landed, at the 
first point of landing.



Sec. 253.51  Apportionment.

    (a) Apportionment formula. The amount of funds apportioned to each 
state is to be determined by the Secretary as the ratio which the 
equally weighted average of the volume and value of fishery resources 
harvested by domestic commercial fishermen and landed within such state 
during the 3 most recent calendar years for which data satisfactory to 
the Secretary are available bears to the total equally weighted average 
of the volume and value of all fishery resources harvested by domestic 
commercial fishermen and landed within all of the states during those 
calendar years.
    (1) The equally weighted average value is determined by the 
following formula:
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TR16DE10.000

[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TR16DE10.001

    (2) Upon appropriation of funds by Congress, the Secretary will take 
the following actions:
    (i) Determine each state's share according to the apportionment 
formula.
    (ii) Certify the funds to the respective NMFS Regional Director.
    (iii) Instruct NMFS Regional Directors to promptly notify states of 
funds' availability.

[[Page 78]]

    (b) No state, under the apportionment formula in paragraph (a) of 
this section, that has a ratio of one-third of 1 percent or higher may 
receive an apportionment for any fiscal year that is less than 1 percent 
of the total amount of funds available for that fiscal year.
    (c) If a State's ratio under the apportionment formula in paragraph 
(b) of this section is less than one-third of 1 percent, that state may 
receive funding if the state:
    (1) Is signatory to an interstate fishery compact;
    (2) Has entered into an enforcement agreement with the Secretary 
and/or the Secretary of the Interior for a fishery that is managed under 
an interstate fishery management plan;
    (3) Borders one or more of the Great Lakes;
    (4) Has entered into an interstate cooperative fishery management 
agreement and has in effect an interstate fisheries management plan or 
an interstate fisheries research Program; or
    (5) Has adopted a Federal fishery management plan for an 
interjurisdictional fishery resource.
    (d) Any state that has a ratio of less than one-third of 1 percent 
and meets any of the requirements set forth in paragraphs (c)(1) through 
(5) of this section may receive an apportionment for any fiscal year 
that is not less than 0.5 percent of the total amount of funds available 
for apportionment for such fiscal year.
    (e) No state may receive an apportionment under this section for any 
fiscal year that is more than 6 percent of the total amount of funds 
available for apportionment for such fiscal year.
    (f) Unused apportionments. Any part of an apportionment for any 
fiscal year to any state:
    (1) That is not obligated during that year;
    (2) With respect to which the state notifies the Secretary that it 
does not wish to receive that part; or
    (3) That is returned to the Secretary by the state, may not be 
considered to be appropriated to that state and must be added to such 
funds as are appropriated for the next fiscal year. Any notification or 
return of funds by a state referred to in this section is irrevocable.



Sec. 253.52  State projects.

    (a) General--(1) Designation of state agency. The Governor of each 
state shall notify the Secretary of which agency of the state government 
is authorized under its laws to regulate commercial fisheries and is, 
therefore, designated receive financial assistance awards. An official 
of such agency shall certify which official(s) is authorized in 
accordance with state law to commit the state to participation under the 
Act, to sign project documents, and to receive payments.
    (2) States that choose to submit proposals in any fiscal year must 
so notify the NMFS Regional Director before the end of the third quarter 
of that fiscal year.
    (3) Any state may, through its state agency, submit to the NMFS 
Regional Director a completed NOAA Grants and Cooperative Agreement 
Application Package with its proposal for a project, which may be 
multiyear. Proposals must describe the full scope of work, 
specifications, and cost estimates for such project.
    (4) States may submit a proposal for a project through, and request 
payment to be made to, an Interstate Fisheries Commission. Any payment 
so made shall be charged against the apportionment of the appropriate 
state(s). Submitting a project through one of the Commissions does not 
remove the matching funds requirement for any state, as provided in 
paragraph (c) of this section.
    (b) Evaluation of projects. The Secretary, before approving any 
proposal for a project, will evaluate the proposal as to its 
applicability, in accordance with 16 U.S.C. 4104(a)(2).
    (c) State matching requirements. The Federal share of the costs of 
any project conducted under this subpart, including a project submitted 
through an Interstate Commission, cannot exceed 75 percent of the total 
estimated cost of the project, unless:
    (1) The state has adopted an interstate fishery management plan for 
the fishery resource to which the project applies; or
    (2) The state has adopted fishery regulations that the Secretary has 
determined are consistent with any Federal

[[Page 79]]

fishery management plan for the species to which the project applies, in 
which case the Federal share cannot exceed 90 percent of the total 
estimated cost of the project.
    (d) Financial assistance award. If the Secretary approves or 
disapproves a proposal for a project, he or she will promptly give 
written notification, including, if disapproved, a detailed explanation 
of the reason(s) for the disapproval.
    (e) Restrictions. (1) The total cost of all items included for 
engineering, planning, inspection, and unforeseen contingencies in 
connection with any works to be constructed as part of such a proposed 
project shall not exceed 10 percent of the total cost of such works, and 
shall be paid by the state as a part of its contribution to the total 
cost of the project.
    (2) The expenditure of funds under this subpart may be applied only 
to projects for which a proposal has been evaluated under paragraph (b) 
of this section and approved by the Secretary, except that up to $25,000 
each fiscal year may be awarded to a state out of the state's regular 
apportionment to carry out an ``enforcement agreement.'' An enforcement 
agreement does not require state matching funds.
    (f) Prosecution of work. All work must be performed in accordance 
with applicable state laws or regulations, except when such laws or 
regulations are in conflict with Federal laws or regulations such that 
the Federal law or regulation prevails.



Sec. 253.53  Other funds.

    (a) Funds for disaster assistance. (1) The Secretary shall retain 
sole authority in distributing any disaster assistance funds made 
available under section 308(b) of the Act. The Secretary may distribute 
these funds after he or she has made a thorough evaluation of the 
scientific information submitted, and has determined that a commercial 
fishery failure of a fishery resource arising from natural or 
undetermined causes has occurred. Funds may only be used to restore the 
resource affected by the disaster, and only by existing methods and 
technology. Any fishery resource used in computing the states' amount 
under the apportionment formula in Sec. 253.601(a) will qualify for 
funding under this section. The Federal share of the cost of any 
activity conducted under the disaster provision of the Act shall be 
limited to 75 percent of the total cost.
    (2) In addition, pursuant to section 308(d) of the Act, the 
Secretary is authorized to award grants to persons engaged in commercial 
fisheries for uninsured losses determined by the Secretary to have been 
suffered as a direct result of a fishery resource disaster. Funds may be 
distributed by the Secretary only after notice and opportunity for 
public comment of the appropriate limitations, terms, and conditions for 
awarding assistance under this section. Assistance provided under this 
section is limited to 75 percent of an uninsured loss to the extent that 
such losses have not been compensated by other Federal or State 
Programs.
    (b) Funds for interstate commissions. Funds authorized to support 
the efforts of the three chartered Interstate Marine Fisheries 
Commissions to develop and maintain interstate fishery management plans 
for interjurisdictional fisheries will be divided equally among the 
Commissions.



Sec. 253.54  Administrative requirements.

    Federal assistance awards made as a result of this Act are subject 
to all Federal laws, Executive Orders, Office of Management and Budget 
Circulars as incorporated by the award; Department of Commerce and NOAA 
regulations; policies and procedures applicable to Federal financial 
assistance awards; and terms and conditions of the awards.



PART 259_CAPITAL CONSTRUCTION FUND TAX REGULATIONS--Table of Contents



Sec.
259.1  Definitions.
259.2  Applying for a Capital Construction Fund Agreement 
          (``Agreement'').
259.3  Acquisition, construction, or reconstruction.
259.4  Constructive deposits and withdrawals; ratification of 
          withdrawals (as qualified) made without first having obtained 
          Secretary's consent; first tax year for which an Agreement is 
          effective.
259.5  Maximum deposit amounts and time to deposit.

[[Page 80]]

259.6  Termination of inactive and zero balance accounts.
259.7  Annual deposit and withdrawal reports required.
259.8  CCF accounts.
259.9  Conditional consents to withdrawal qualification.
259.10  Miscellaneous.

    Authority: 46 U.S.C. 53501, formerly 46 U.S.C. App. 1177 and 1177-1.

    Source: 82 FR 24565, May 30, 2017, unless otherwise noted.



Sec. 259.1  Definitions.

    As used in this part:
    Act means Chapter 535 of Title 46 of the U.S. Code (46 U.S.C. 53501-
53517), as may be amended from time to time.
    Agreement means the contract to participate in the program between 
the approved CCF applicant (party) and the Secretary.
    Agreement vessel means any eligible vessel or qualified vessel which 
is subject to an Agreement.
    Citizen of the United States means any person who is a United States 
citizen and any corporation or partnership organized under the laws of 
any state which meets the requirements for documenting vessels in the 
U.S. coastwise trade.
    Commercial fishing means fishing in which the fish harvested, either 
in whole or in part, are intended to enter commerce or enter commerce 
through sale, barter or trade.
    Depository means the bank or brokerage account(s) listed in the 
Agreement where the CCF funds will be physically held.
    Eligible vessel means--
    (1) A vessel--
    (i) Constructed in the United States (and, if reconstructed, 
reconstructed in the United States), constructed outside of the United 
States but documented under the laws of the United States on April 15, 
1970, or constructed outside the United States for use in the United 
States foreign trade pursuant to a contract made before April 15, 1970;
    (ii) Documented under the laws of the United States if 5 net tons or 
greater; and
    (iii) Operated in the foreign or domestic commerce of the United 
States or in the fisheries of the United States; and
    (2) A commercial fishing vessel or vessel which will carry fishing 
parties for hire--
    (i) Constructed in the United States and, if reconstructed, 
reconstructed in the United States;
    (ii) State registered if at least 2 net tons but fewer than 5 net 
tons or Documented under the laws of the United States if 5 net tons or 
greater;
    (iii) Owned by a citizen of the United States;
    (iv) Having its home port in the United States; and
    (v) Operated in the commercial fisheries of the United States.
    Extension period means the first day following the end of the Filing 
period and ending on the last day of the party's last filing extension.
    Filing period means the first day following the end of the Tax Year 
and ending on the party's last day to file their tax return absent a 
filing extension.
    Limited Access System means a system that limits participation in a 
fishery to those satisfying certain eligibility criteria or requirements 
contained in a fishery management plan or associated regulation.
    Qualified vessel means--
    (1) A vessel--
    (i) Constructed in the United States (and, if reconstructed, 
reconstructed in the United States), constructed outside of the United 
States but documented under the laws of the United States on April 15, 
1970, or constructed outside the United States for use in the United 
States foreign trade pursuant to a contract made before April 15, 1970;
    (ii) Documented under the laws of the United States if 5 net tons or 
greater; and
    (iii) Agreed, between the Secretary and the person maintaining the 
capital construction fund established under 46 U.S.C. 53503, to be 
operated in the fisheries of the United States; and
    (2) A commercial fishing vessel or vessel which will carry fishing 
parties for hire--
    (i) Constructed in the United States and, if reconstructed, 
reconstructed in the United States;

[[Page 81]]

    (ii) State registered if at least 2 net tons but fewer than 5 net 
tons or Documented under the laws of the United States if 5 net tons or 
greater;
    (iii) Owned by a citizen of the United States;
    (iv) Having its home port in the United States; and
    (v) Operated in the commercial fisheries of the United States; and
    (3) Gear which is permanently fixed to the vessel. The expenditure 
for gear and certain nets which are not fixed to the vessel (pots, 
traps, longline, seine nets, gill set nets and gill drift nets) is 
excluded from the amount eligible for qualified withdrawals of CCF 
funds.
    Schedule A means the section of the Agreement that designates the 
income producing vessel from which deposits are made to a designated 
account.
    Schedule B means the section of the Agreement that designates the 
qualified project for which the CCF funds are to be expended.
    Secretary means the Secretary of Commerce with respect to eligible 
or qualified vessels operated or to be operated in the fisheries of the 
United States.
    Tax due date means the date the party's Federal tax return must be 
filed, including extensions, with the Internal Revenue Service.
    Tax year means the period between January 1 and December 31 for 
Calendar year filers or the designated fiscal year for fiscal year 
filers.
    United States means the United States of America and, for 
citizenship purposes, includes the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, American 
Samoa, Guam, the U.S. Virgin Islands, the Republic of the Marshall 
Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, the Commonwealth of the 
Northern Mariana Islands, and any other commonwealth, territory, or 
possession of the United States, or any political subdivision of any of 
them.



Sec. 259.2  Applying for a Capital Construction Fund Agreement (``Agreement'').

    (a) General qualifications. To be eligible to enter into an 
Agreement an applicant must:
    (1) Be a citizen of the United States (citizenship requirements are 
those necessary for documenting vessels in the coastwise trade within 
the meaning of section 2 of the Shipping Act, 1916, as amended);
    (2) Own or lease one or more eligible vessels (as defined at 46 
U.S.C. 53501) operating in the foreign or domestic commerce of the 
United States;
    (3) Have an acceptable plan to acquire, construct, or reconstruct 
one or more qualified vessels (as defined at 46 U.S.C. 53501). The plan 
must be a firm representation of the applicant's actual intentions. 
Qualified vessels must be for commercial operation in the fisheries of 
the United States. If the vessel is 5 net tons or over, it must be 
documented with a fishery trade endorsement. Dual documentation in both 
the fisheries and the coastwise trade of the United States is 
permissible. Any vessel which will carry fishing parties for hire must 
be inspected and certified (under 46 CFR part 176) by the U.S. Coast 
Guard as qualified to carry more than six passengers. If the vessel 
weighs fewer than 5 net tons the party must demonstrate to the 
Secretary's satisfaction that the carrying of fishing parties for hire 
will constitute its primary activity.
    (b) Content of application. Applicants seeking an Agreement must 
submit a formal application providing the following information:
    (1) Name and Tax Identification Number (TIN) of applicant;
    (2) Proof of U.S. citizenship;
    (3) The first taxable year for which the Agreement is to apply (see 
Sec. 259.4 for the latest time at which applications for an Agreement 
relating to the previous taxable year may be received);
    (4) The following information regarding each eligible vessel which 
is to be incorporated in Schedule A of the Agreement:
    (i) Name of vessel,
    (ii) Official number or, in the case of vessels weighing under 5 net 
tons, the State registration number, where required,
    (iii) Type of vessel (i.e., catching vessel, processing vessel, 
transporting vessel, charter vessel, barge, passenger carrying fishing 
vessel, etc.),
    (iv) General characteristics (i.e., net tonnage, fish-carrying 
capacity, age, length, type of fishing gear, number of

[[Page 82]]

passengers carried or in the case of vessels operating in the foreign or 
domestic commerce the various uses of the vessel, etc.),
    (v) Whether it is owned or leased and, if leased, the name of the 
owner, and a copy of the lease,
    (vi) Date and place of construction,
    (vii) If reconstructed, date of redelivery and place of 
reconstruction,
    (viii) Trade (or trades) in which the vessel is documented and date 
last documented,
    (ix) The fishery of operation (which in this section means each 
species or group of species). Each species must be specifically 
identified by the acceptable common names of fish, shellfish, or other 
living marine resources which each vessel catches, processes, or 
transports or will catch, process, or transport for commercial purposes 
such as marketing or processing the catch),
    (x) The area of operation (which for fishing vessels means the 
general geographic areas in which each vessel will catch, process, or 
transport, or charter for each species or group of species of fish, 
shellfish, or other living marine resources),
    (5) The specific objectives to be achieved by the accumulation of 
assets in a Capital Construction Fund (to be incorporated in Schedule B 
of the Agreement) including:
    (i) Number of vessels,
    (ii) Type of vessel (i.e., catching, processing, transporting, or 
passenger carrying fishing vessels),
    (iii) General characteristics (i.e., net tonnage, fish-carrying 
capacity, age, length, type of fishing gear, number of passengers 
carried),
    (iv) Cost of projects,
    (v) Amount of indebtedness to be paid for vessels to be constructed, 
acquired, or reconstructed (all notes, mortgages, or other evidence of 
indebtedness must be submitted as soon as available, together with 
sufficient additional evidence to establish that full proceeds of the 
indebtedness to be paid from a CCF account under an Agreement, were used 
solely for the purpose of the construction, acquisition, or 
reconstruction of Schedule B vessels),
    (vi) Date of construction, acquisition, or reconstruction,
    (vii) Fishery of operation (which in this section means each species 
or group of species must be specifically identified by acceptable common 
name of fish, shellfish, or other living marine resources), and
    (viii) Area of operation (which in this section means the general 
geographic areas in which each vessel will operate for each species or 
group of species of fish, shellfish, or other living marine resources),
    (c) Filing. The application must be signed and submitted to the 
Financial Services Division of the National Marine Fisheries Service. As 
a general rule, the Agreement must be executed and entered into by the 
taxpayer on or prior to the due date for the filing of the Federal tax 
return in order to be effective for the tax year to which that return 
relates. It is in the Applicant's best interest to file at least 45 days 
in advance of such date.



Sec. 259.3  Acquisition, construction, or reconstruction.

    CCF funds cannot be used for any vessel acquisition, construction, 
or reconstruction that increases harvesting capacity in a fishery or 
fisheries, other than in a limited access system in which the fisheries 
management authority establishes harvesting limits.
    (a) Acquisition. CCF funds can be used to acquire any used qualified 
vessel that will fish in a limited access system in which the fisheries 
management authority establishes harvesting limits. If the fishery or 
fisheries is not a limited access system, CCF funds can only be used to 
replace an existing, recently sunken, or scrapped vessel and its 
existing harvesting capacity. The replaced vessel must lose its 
fisheries trade endorsement and the vessel owner must notify the Coast 
Guard Documentation Center of that fact.
    (b) Construction. CCF funds can be used to construct a new qualified 
vessel that will fish in a limited access system in which the fisheries 
management authority establishes harvesting limits. If the fishery or 
fisheries is not a limited access system, CCF funds can only be used to 
replace an existing, recently sunken, or scrapped vessel and its 
existing harvesting capacity. The replaced vessel must lose its 
fisheries

[[Page 83]]

trade endorsement and the vessel owner must notify the Coast Guard 
Documentation Center of that fact.
    (c) Reconstruction. Reconstruction may include rebuilding, 
replacing, reconditioning, refurbishing, repairing, converting and/or 
improving any portion of a vessel. A reconstruction project must, 
however, either substantially prolong the useful life of the 
reconstructed vessel, increase its value, materially increase its 
safety, reliability, or energy efficiency, or adapt it to a different 
commercial use in the fishing trade or industry. No vessel more than 25 
years old at the time of withdrawal shall be a qualified vessel for the 
purpose of reconstruction unless a special showing is made, to the 
Secretary's discretionary satisfaction, that the type and degree of 
reconstruction intended will result in an efficient and productive 
vessel with an economically useful life of at least 10 years beyond the 
date reconstruction is completed.
    (d) Time permitted for construction or reconstruction. Construction 
or reconstruction must be completed within 18 months from the date 
construction or reconstruction first commences, unless otherwise 
consented to by the Secretary.



Sec. 259.4  Constructive deposits and withdrawals; ratification of
withdrawals (as qualified) made without first having obtained 
Secretary's consent; first tax year for which an Agreement is effective.

    (a) Constructive deposits and withdrawals (before Agreement executed 
date). Constructive deposits and withdrawals are deemed to have been 
deposited to and withdrawn from a designated CCF account even though the 
funds were not physically deposited. Constructive deposits and 
withdrawals shall be permissible only during the ``Tax Year'' for which 
a written application for an Agreement is submitted to the Secretary. 
Once the Secretary executes the Agreement, the constructive deposit and 
withdrawal period ends. All deposits must be physically deposited into a 
designated CCF account.
    (1) All qualified deposits and expenditures occurring within the 
period specified directly above, that are within the eligible ceilings 
specified at 46 U.S.C. 53505, may be consented to by the Secretary as 
constructive deposits and withdrawals. In order for the Secretary to 
provide his or her consent for constructive deposit and withdrawal 
treatment, the applicant must include a written request with the 
application and provide sufficient supporting data to enable the 
Secretary to evaluate the request. This written request must be 
submitted no later than the ``Extension Period'' for that party's 
initial tax year.
    (2) [Reserved]
    (b) Constructive deposits and withdrawals (after the Agreement 
effective date). The Secretary shall not permit constructive deposits or 
withdrawals after the effective date of an Agreement. Deposits made 
after the effective date of an Agreement must be physically deposited 
into a dedicated CCF account.
    (c) First tax year for which an Agreement is effective. In order for 
an Agreement to be effective for any applicant's ``Tax Year,'' the 
written application must be submitted to the Secretary before the end of 
the ``Filing Period'' or ``Extension Period'' for that tax year, 
whichever applies. If the written application is received by the 
Secretary, after the end of the ``Filing Period'' or ``Extension 
Period,'' whichever applies, then the Agreement will be first effective 
for the next succeeding ``Tax Year.''
    (1) It is in the applicant's best interest to submit his or her 
written application at least 45 days in advance of the end of his or her 
tax due date. If the written application is submitted too close to the 
tax due date, and the Secretary is not ultimately able to execute the 
Agreement, the applicant must bear the burden of negotiating with the 
Internal Revenue Service for relief. The Secretary shall regard any 
penalties related to this denied application as due to the applicant's 
failure to apply for an Agreement in a timely manner.
    (2) [Reserved]
    (d) Ratification of withdrawals, as qualified, made without first 
having obtained Secretary's prior consent. Any withdrawals made after 
the effective date of an Agreement without the Secretary's consent are 
automatically

[[Page 84]]

non-qualified withdrawals, unless the Secretary subsequently consents to 
them by ratification.
    (1) The Secretary may ratify, as qualified, any withdrawal made 
without the Secretary's prior consent, provided the withdrawal would 
have resulted in the Secretary's consent had it been requested before 
withdrawal.
    (2) The Secretary may issue his or her retroactive consent, if 
appropriate, as work priorities permit. However, if the Secretary is 
unable to issue retroactive consent for withdrawals made without his or 
her consent, then those withdrawals, and any associated penalties, will 
be deemed due to the party's failure to apply in a timely manner.
    (3) It is recommended that a party submit his or her request for 
withdrawal at least 45 days in advance of the expected date of 
withdrawal. Withdrawals made without the Secretary's consent, in 
reliance on obtaining the Secretary's consent, are made purely at a 
party's own risk. Should any withdrawal made without the Secretary's 
consent prove, for any reason, to be one which the Secretary will not or 
cannot consent to ratify, then the result will be an unqualified 
withdrawal and/or an involuntary termination of the Agreement.
    (4) Should a party withdraw CCF funds for a project not previously 
deemed an eligible Schedule B objective without having first obtained 
the Secretary's consent, the Secretary may entertain an application to 
amend the Agreement's Schedule B objectives as the prerequisite to 
consenting by ratification to the withdrawal.
    (5) Redeposit of any withdrawals made without the Secretary's 
consent, and for which such consent is not subsequently given (either by 
ratification or otherwise), shall not be permitted. If the non-qualified 
withdrawal adversely affects the Agreement's general status the 
Secretary may terminate the Agreement.



Sec. 259.5  Maximum deposit amounts and time to deposit.

    (a) Other than the maximum annual ceilings established by the Act, 
the Secretary shall not establish an annual ceiling. However, deposits 
can no longer be made once a party has deposited 100 percent of the 
anticipated cost of all Schedule B objectives unless the Agreement is 
then amended to establish additional Schedule B objectives.
    (b) Ordinarily, the Secretary shall permit deposits to accumulate 
prior to commencement of any given Schedule B objective for a maximum of 
ten years. However, at the Secretary's sole discretion and based on good 
and sufficient cause shown, the time period may be extended.



Sec. 259.6  Termination of inactive and zero balance accounts.

    (a) If a Schedule B objective has not commenced within 10 years from 
the date the Agreement was established, and has not been extended by 
written approval of the Secretary, the Agreement is considered inactive 
and subject to termination.
    (b) If the account balance of all depositories of an Agreement is 
zero dollars 10 years after the date it was established, and has not 
been extended through amendment, the Agreement is considered inactive 
and subject to termination unless its Schedule B objective has 
commenced.
    (c) A certified letter will be sent to holders of Agreements 
identified for termination informing them that the agreement will 
terminate 60 days after the date of the letter unless the deficiencies 
identified in the letter are addressed.



Sec. 259.7  Annual deposit and withdrawal reports required.

    (a) The Secretary will require from each party an annual deposit and 
withdrawal report for each CCF depository. Failure to submit such 
reports may be cause for involuntary termination of the party's 
Agreement.
    (1) A final deposit and withdrawal report at the end of the tax 
year, which shall be submitted not later than 30 days after expiration 
of the due date, for filing the party's Federal income tax return. The 
report must be made on a form prescribed by the Secretary using a 
separate form for each CCF depository.
    (2) Each report must bear a certification that the deposit and 
withdrawal information given includes all annual

[[Page 85]]

deposit and withdrawal activity for each CCF depository. Negative 
reports must be submitted in those cases where there is no deposit and/
or withdrawal activity.
    (b) The Secretary, at his or her discretion, may, after due notice, 
disqualify withdrawals and/or involuntarily terminate the Agreement for 
the participant's failure to submit the required annual deposit and 
withdrawal reports.
    (c) Additionally, each party shall submit, not later than 30 days 
after expiration of the party's tax due date, a copy of the party's 
Federal Income Tax Return filed with IRS for the preceding tax year. 
Failure to submit the Federal Income Tax Return shall, after due notice, 
be cause for the same adverse action specified in paragraph (b) of this 
section.



Sec. 259.8  CCF accounts.

    (a) General. Each CCF account in a scheduled depository shall have 
an account number, which must be reflected on the reports required by 
Sec. 259.7. All CCF accounts shall be reserved only for CCF 
transactions. There shall be no intermingling of CCF and non-CCF 
transactions and there shall be no pooling of 2 or more CCF accounts 
without the prior consent of the Secretary. Safe deposit boxes, safes, 
or the like shall not be eligible CCF depositories without the 
Secretary's consent, which shall be granted solely at his or her 
discretion.
    (b) Assignment. The use of funds held in a CCF depository for 
transactions in the nature of a countervailing balance, compensating 
balance, pledge, assignment, or similar security arrangement shall 
constitute a material breach of the Agreement unless prior written 
consent of the Secretary is obtained.
    (c) Depositories. Section 53506(a) of the Act provides that amounts 
in a CCF account must be kept in a depository or depositories specified 
in the Agreements and be subject to such trustee or other fiduciary 
requirements as the Secretary may require. Unless otherwise specified in 
the Agreement, the party may select the type or types of accounts in 
which the assets of the Fund may be deposited.



Sec. 259.9  Conditional consents to withdrawal qualification.

    The Secretary may conditionally consent to the qualification of a 
withdrawal. This consent is conditioned upon the timely submission, to 
the Secretary, of the items requested by the Secretary in the withdrawal 
approval letter. Failure to provide these items in a timely manner, and 
after due notice, will result in nonqualification of the withdrawal and/
or involuntary termination of the Agreement.



Sec. 259.10  Miscellaneous.

    (a) Wherever the Secretary prescribes time constraints, the postmark 
date shall control if mailed. If a private delivery service is used, 
including Federal Express or United Parcel Service, the date listed on 
the label shall control. Submission of CCF transactions by email or 
facsimile is only allowable when an original signature is not required.
    (b) All CCF information received by the Secretary shall be held 
strictly confidential to the extent permitted by law, except that it may 
be published or disclosed in statistical form provided such publication 
does not disclose, directly or indirectly, the identity of the fund 
holder.
    (c) While recognizing that precise regulations are necessary in 
order to treat similarly situated parties similarly, the Secretary also 
realizes that precision in regulations can sometimes cause inequitable 
effects to result from unavoidable, unintended, or minor discrepancies 
between the regulations and the circumstances they attempt to govern. 
The Secretary will, consequently, at his or her discretion, as a matter 
of privilege and not as a matter of right, attempt to afford relief to 
parties where literal application of the purely procedural, as opposed 
to substantive, aspects of these regulations would otherwise work an 
inequitable hardship. This privilege will be sparingly granted and no 
party should act in reliance on its being granted.
    (d) These Secs. 259.1 through 259.10 are applicable to all 
Agreements first entered into (or amended) on or after the date these 
sections are adopted.

[[Page 86]]

    (e) These Secs. 259.1 through 259.10 are specifically incorporated 
in all Agreements existing prior to the date these sections are adopted.

[[Page 87]]



SUBCHAPTER G_PROCESSED FISHERY PRODUCTS, PROCESSED PRODUCTS THEREOF, AND 
                  CERTAIN OTHER PROCESSED FOOD PRODUCTS





PART 260_INSPECTION AND CERTIFICATION--Table of Contents



  Subpart A_Inspection and Certification of Establishments and Fishery 
                     Products for Human Consumption

Sec.
260.1  Administration of regulations.

                               Definitions

260.6  Terms defined.
260.7  Designation of official certificates, memoranda, marks, other 
          identifications, and devices for purposes of the Agricultural 
          Marketing Act.

                           Inspection Service

260.12  Where inspection service is offered.
260.13  Who may obtain inspection service.
260.14  How to make application.
260.15  Information required in connection with application.
260.16  Filing of application.
260.17  Record of filing time.
260.18  When application may be rejected.
260.19  When application may be withdrawn.
260.20  Disposition of inspected sample.
260.21  Basis of inspection and grade or compliance determination.
260.22  Order of inspection service.
260.23  Postponing inspection service.
260.24  Financial interest of inspector.
260.25  Forms of certificates.
260.26  Issuance of certificates.
260.27  Issuance of corrected certificates.
260.28  Issuance of an inspection report in lieu of an inspection 
          certificate.
260.29  Disposition of inspection certificates.
260.30  Report of inspection results prior to issuance of formal report.

                            Appeal Inspection

260.36  When appeal inspection may be requested.
260.37  Where to file for an appeal inspection and information required.
260.38  When an application for an appeal inspection may be withdrawn.
260.39  When appeal inspection may be refused.
260.40  Who shall perform appeal inspection.
260.41  Appeal inspection certificate.

                  Licensing of Samplers and Inspectors

260.47  Who may become licensed sampler.
260.48  Application to become a licensed sampler.
260.49  Inspectors.
260.50  Suspension or revocation of license of licensed sampler or 
          licensed inspector.
260.51  Surrender of license.

                                Sampling

260.57  How samples are drawn by inspectors or licensed samplers.
260.58  Accessibility for sampling.
260.59  How officially drawn samples are to be identified.
260.60  How samples are to be shipped.
260.61  Sampling plans and procedures for determining lot compliance.
260.62  Issuance of certificate of sampling.
260.63  Identification of lots sampled.

                            Fees and Charges

260.69  Payment fees and charges.
260.70  Schedule of fees.
260.71  [Reserved]
260.72  Fees for inspection service performed under cooperative 
          agreement.
260.73  Disposition of fees for inspections made under cooperative 
          agreement.
260.74  Fee for appeal inspection.
260.76  [Reserved]
260.77  Fees for score sheets.
260.78  Fees for additional copies of inspection certificates.
260.79  Travel and other expenses.
260.80  Charges for inspection service on a contract basis.
260.81  Readjustment and increase in hourly rates of fees.

                              Miscellaneous

260.84  Policies and procedures.
260.86  Approved identification.
260.88  Political activity.
260.90  Compliance with other laws.
260.91  Identification.
260.93  Debarment and suspension.

   Requirements for Plants Operating Under Continuous Inspection on a 
                             Contract Basis

260.96  Application for fishery products inspection service on a 
          contract basis at official establishments.
260.97  Conditions for providing fishery products inspection service at 
          official establishments.
260.98  Premises.
260.99  Buildings and structures.
260.100  Facilities.
260.101  Lavatory accommodations.
260.102  Equipment.

[[Page 88]]

260.103  Operations and operating procedures shall be in accordance with 
          an effective sanitation program.
260.104  Personnel.

                          Labeling Requirements

260.200-260.201  [Reserved]

    Authority: Sec. 6, 70 Stat. 1122, 16 U.S.C. 742e; secs. 203, 205, 60 
Stat. 1087, 1090 as amended; 7 U.S.C. 1622, 1624; Reorganization Plan 
No. 4 of 1970 (84 Stat. 2090).

    Source: 31 FR 16052, Dec. 15, 1966, unless otherwise noted.



  Subpart A_Inspection and Certification of Establishments and Fishery 
                     Products for Human Consumption



Sec. 260.1  Administration of regulations.

    The Secretary of Commerce is charged with the administration of the 
regulations in this part except that he may delegate any or all of such 
functions to any officer or employee of the National Marine Fisheries 
Service of the Department in his discretion. \1\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ All functions of the Department of Agriculture which pertain to 
fish, shellfish, and any products thereof, now performed under the 
authority of title II of the Act of August 14, 1946, popularly known as 
the Agricultural Marketing Act of 1946, as amended (7 U.S.C. 1621-1627) 
including but not limited to the development and promulgation of grade 
standards, the inspection and certification, and improvement of 
transportation facilities and rates for fish and shellfish and any 
products thereof, were transferred to the Department of the Interior by 
the Director of the Budget (23 FR 2304) pursuant to section 6(a) of the 
Act of Aug. 8, 1956, popularly known as the Fish and Wildlife Act of 
1956 (16 U.S.C. 742e). Reorganization Plan No. 4 of 1970 (84 Stat. 2090) 
transferred, among other things, such functions from the U.S. Department 
of the Interior to the U.S. Department of Commerce.

[36 FR 21037, Nov. 3, 1971]

                               Definitions



Sec. 260.6  Terms defined.

    Words in the regulations in this part in the singular form shall be 
deemed to import the plural and vice versa, as the case may demand. For 
the purposes of the regulations in this part, unless the context 
otherwise requires, the following terms shall have the following 
meanings:
    Acceptance number. ``Acceptance number'' means the number in a 
sampling plan that indicates the maximum number of deviants permitted in 
a sample of a lot that meets a specific requirement.
    Act. ``Act'' means the applicable provisions of the Agricultural 
Marketing Act of 1946 (60 Stat. 1087 et seq., as amended; 7 U.S.C. 1621 
et seq.).
    Applicant. ``Applicant'' means any interested party who requests 
inspection service under the regulations in this part.
    Case. ``Case'' means the number of containers (cased or uncased) 
which, by the particular industry are ordinarily packed in a shipping 
container.
    Certificate of loading. ``Certificate of loading'' means a 
statement, either written or printed, issued pursuant to the regulations 
in this part, relative to check-loading of a processed product 
subsequent to inspection thereof.
    Certificate of sampling. ``Certificate of sampling'' means a 
statement, either written or printed issued pursuant to the regulations 
in this part, identifying officially drawn samples and may include a 
description of condition of containers and the condition under which the 
processed product is stored.
    Class. ``Class'' means a grade or rank of quality.
    Condition. ``Condition'' means the degree of soundness of the 
product which may affect its merchantability and includes, but is not 
limited to those factors which are subject to change as a result of age, 
improper preparation and processing, improper packaging, improper 
storage, or improper handling.
    Department. ``Department'' means the U.S. Department of Commerce.
    Deviant. ``Deviant'' means a sample unit affected by one or more 
deviations or a sample unit that varies in a specifically defined manner 
from the requirements of a standard, specification, or other inspection 
document.
    Deviation. ``Deviation'' means any specifically defined variation 
from a particular requirement.
    Director. ``Director'' means the Director of the National Marine 
Fisheries Service.

[[Page 89]]

    Establishment. ``Establishment'' means any premises, buildings, 
structures, facilities, and equipment (including vehicles) used in the 
processing, handling, transporting, and storage of fish and fishery 
products.
    Inspection certificate. ``Inspection certificate'' means a 
statement, either written or printed, issued pursuant to the regulations 
in this part, setting forth in addition to appropriate descriptive 
information relative to a processed product, and the container thereof, 
the quality and condition, or any part thereof, of the product and may 
include a description of the conditions under which the product is 
stored.
    Inspection service. ``Inspection service'' means:
    (1) The sampling pursuant to the regulations in this part;
    (2) The determination pursuant to the regulations in this part of:
    (i) Essential characteristics such as style, type, size, or identity 
of any processed product which differentiates between major groups of 
the same kind;
    (ii) The class, quality, and condition of any processed product, 
including the condition of the container thereof by the examination of 
appropriate samples;
    (3) The issuance of any certificate of sampling, inspection 
certificates, or certificates of loading of a processed product, or any 
report relative to any of the foregoing; or
    (4) Performance by an inspector of any related services such as to 
observe the preparation of the product from its raw state through each 
step in the entire process; or observe conditions under which the 
product is being harvested, prepared, handled, stored, processed, 
packed, preserved, transported, or held; or observe sanitation as a 
prerequisite to the inspection of the processed product, either on a 
contract basis or periodic basis; or checkload the inspected processed 
product in connection with the marketing of the product, or any other 
type of service of a consultative or advisory nature related herewith.
    Inspector. ``Inspector'' means any employee of the Department 
authorized by the Secretary or any other person licensed by the 
Secretary to investigate, sample, inspect, and certify in accordance 
with the regulations in this part to any interested party the class, 
quality and condition of processed products covered in this part and to 
perform related duties in connection with the inspection service.
    Interested party. ``Interested party'' means any person who has a 
financial interest in the commodity involved.
    Licensed sampler. ``Licensed sampler'' means any person who is 
authorized by the Secretary to draw samples of processed products for 
inspection service, to inspect for identification and condition of 
containers in a lot, and may, when authorized by the Secretary, perform 
related services under the act and the regulations in this part.
    Lot. ``Lot'' has the following meanings:
    (1) For the purpose of charging fees and issuing certificates, 
``Lot'' means any number of containers of the same size and type which 
contain a processed product of the same type and style located in the 
same or adjacent warehouses and which are available for inspection at 
any one time: Provided, That:
    (i) Processed products in separate piles which differ from each 
other as to grade or other factors may be deemed to be separate lots;
    (ii) Containers in a pile bearing an identification mark different 
from other containers of such processed product in that pile, if 
determined to be of lower grade or deficient in other factors, may be 
deemed to be a separate lot; and
    (iii) If the applicant requests more than one inspection certificate 
covering different portions of such processed product, the quantity of 
the product covered by each certificate shall be deemed to be a separate 
lot.
    (2) For the purpose of sampling and determining the grade or 
compliance with a specification, ``Lot'' means each pile of containers 
of the same size and type containing a processed product of the same 
type and style which is separated from other piles in the same 
warehouse, but containers in the same pile bearing an identification 
mark different from other containers in that

[[Page 90]]

pile may be deemed to be a separate lot.
    Official establishment. ``Official establishment'' means any 
establishment which has been approved by National Marine Fisheries 
Service, and utilizes inspection service on a contract basis.
    Officially drawn sample. ``Officiallydrawn sample'' means any sample 
that has been selected from a particular lot by an inspector, licensed 
sampler, or by any other person authorized by the Secretary pursuant to 
the regulations in this part.
    Person. ``Person'' means any individual, partnership, association, 
business trust, corporation, any organized group of persons (whether 
incorporated or not), the United States (including, but not limited to, 
any corporate agencies thereof), any State, county, or municipal 
government, any common carrier, and any authorized agent of any of the 
foregoing.
    Plant. ``Plant'' means the premises, buildings, structures, and 
equipment (including, but not being limited to, machines, utensils, and 
fixtures) employed or used with respect to the manufacture or production 
of processed products.
    Processed product. ``Processed product'' means any fishery product 
or other food product covered under the regulations in this part which 
has been preserved by any recognized commercial process, including, but 
not limited to, canning, freezing, dehydrating, drying, the addition of 
chemical substances, or by fermentation.
    Quality. ``Quality'' means the inherent properties of any processed 
product which determine the relative degree of excellence of such 
product, and includes the effects of preparation and processing, and may 
or may not include the effects of packing media, or added ingredients.
    Rejection number. ``Rejection number'' means the number in a 
sampling plan that indicates the minimum number of deviants in a sample 
that will cause a lot to fail a specific requirement.
    Sample. ``Sample'' means any number of sample units to be used for 
inspection.
    Sample unit. ``Sample unit'' means a container and/or its entire 
contents, a portion of the contents of a container or other unit of 
commodity, or a composite mixture of a product to be used for 
inspection.
    Sampling. ``Sampling'' means the act of selecting samples of 
processed products for the purpose of inspection under the regulations 
in this part.
    Secretary. ``Secretary'' means the Secretary of the Department or 
any other officer or employee of the Department authorized to exercise 
the powers and to perform the duties of the Secretary in respect to the 
matters covered by the regulations in this part.
    Shipping container. ``Shipping container'' means an individual 
container designed for shipping a number of packages or cans ordinarily 
packed in a container for shipping or designed for packing unpackaged 
processed products for shipping.
    Unofficially drawn sample. ``Unofficially drawn sample'' means any 
sample that has been selected by any person other than an inspector or 
licensed sampler, or by any other person not authorized by the Director 
pursuant to the regulations in this part.
    Wholesome. ``Wholesome'' means the minimum basis of acceptability 
for human food purposes, of any fish or fishery product as defined in 
section 402 of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, as amended.

[31 FR 16052, Dec. 15, 1966, as amended at 36 FR 21037, Nov. 3, 1971]



Sec. 260.7  Designation of official certificates, memoranda, marks,
other identifications, and devices for purposes of the Agricultural
Marketing Act.

    Subsection 203(h) of the Agricultural Marketing Act of 1946 provides 
criminal penalties for various specified offenses relating to official 
certificates, memoranda, marks or other identifications and devices for 
making such marks or identifications, issued or authorized under section 
203 of said act, and certain misrepresentations concerning the 
inspection or grading of agricultural products under said section. For 
the purposes of said subsection and the provisions in this part, the 
terms listed below shall have the respective meanings specified:

[[Page 91]]

    Official certificate. ``Official certificate'' means any form of 
certification, either written or printed, including those defined in 
Sec. 260.6, used under this part to certify with respect to the 
inspection, class, grade, quality, size, quantity, or condition of 
products (including the compliance of products with applicable 
specifications).
    Official device. ``Official device'' means a stamping appliance, 
branding device, stencil, printed label, or any other mechanically or 
manually operated tool that is approved by the Director for the purpose 
of applying any official mark or other identification to any product or 
the packaging material thereof.
    Official identification. ``Official identification'' means any 
United States (U.S.) standard designation of class, grade, quality, 
size, quantity, or condition specified in this part or any symbol, 
stamp, label, or seal indicating that the product has been graded or 
inspected and/or indicating the class, grade, quality, size, quantity, 
or condition of the product approved by the Director and authorized to 
be affixed to any product, or affixed to or printed on the packaging 
material of any product.
    Official mark. ``Official mark'' means the grade mark, inspection 
mark, combined form of inspection and grade mark, and any other mark, or 
any variations in such marks, including those prescribed in Sec. 260.86, 
approved by the Secretary and authorized to be affixed to any product, 
or affixed to or printed on the packaging material of any product, 
stating that the product was graded or inspected or both, or indicating 
the appropriate U.S. Grade or condition of the product, or for the 
purpose of maintaining the identity of products graded or inspected or 
both under this part.
    Official memorandum. ``Official memorandum'' means any initial 
record of findings made by an authorized person in the process of 
grading, inspecting, or sampling pursuant to this part, any processing 
or plant-operation report made by an authorized person in connection 
with grading, inspecting, or sampling under this part, and any report 
made by an authorized person of services performed pursuant to this 
part.

                           Inspection Service



Sec. 260.12  Where inspection service is offered.

    Inspection service may be furnished wherever an inspector or 
licensed sampler is available and the facilities and conditions are 
satisfactory for the conduct of such service.



Sec. 260.13  Who may obtain inspection service.

    An application for inspection service may be made by any interested 
party, including, but not limited to, the United States and any 
instrumentality or agency thereof, any State, county, municipality, or 
common carrier, and any authorized agent in behalf of the foregoing.



Sec. 260.14  How to make application.

    An application for inspection service may be made to the officer of 
inspection or to any inspector, at or nearest the place where the 
service is desired. An up-to-date list of the Inspection Field Offices 
of the Department may be obtained upon request to the Director. 
Satisfactory proof that the applicant is an interested party shall be 
furnished.



Sec. 260.15  Information required in connection with application.

    Application for inspection service shall be made in the English 
language and may be made orally (in person or by telephone), in writing, 
or by telegraph. If an application for inspection service is made 
orally, such application shall be confirmed promptly in writing. In 
connection with each application for inspection service, there shall be 
furnished such information as may be necessary to perform an inspection 
on the processed product for which application for inspection is made, 
including but not limited to, the name of the product, name and address 
of the packer or plant where such product was packed, the location of 
the product, its lot or car number, codes or other identification marks, 
the number of containers, the type and size of the containers, the 
interest of the applicant in the product, whether the lot has been 
inspected previously to the application by any Federal agency and the 
purpose for which inspection is desired.

[[Page 92]]



Sec. 260.16  Filing of application.

    An application for inspection service shall be regarded as filed 
only when made in accordance with the regulations in this part.



Sec. 260.17  Record of filing time.

    A record showing the date and hour when each application for 
inspection or for an appeal inspection is received shall be maintained.



Sec. 260.18  When application may be rejected.

    An application for inspection service may be rejected by the 
Secretary (a) for noncompliance by the applicant with the regulations in 
this part, (b) for nonpayment for previous inspection services rendered, 
(c) when the product is not properly identifiable by code or other 
marks, or (d) when it appears that to perform the inspection service 
would not be to the best interests of the Government. Such applicant 
shall be promptly notified of the reason for such rejection.



Sec. 260.19  When application may be withdrawn.

    An application for inspection service may be withdrawn by the 
applicant at any time before the inspection is performed: Provided, 
That, the applicant shall pay at the hourly rate prescribed in 
Sec. 260.70 for the time incurred by the inspector in connection with 
such application, any travel expenses, telephone, telegraph or other 
expenses which have been incurred by the inspection service in 
connection with such application.

[31 FR 16052, Dec. 15, 1966, as amended at 36 FR 18738, Sept. 21, 1971]



Sec. 260.20  Disposition of inspected sample.

    Any sample of a processed product that has been used for inspection 
may be returned to the applicant, at his request and expense; otherwise 
it shall be destroyed, or disposed of to a charitable institution.



Sec. 260.21  Basis of inspection and grade or compliance determination.

    (a) Inspection service shall be performed on the basis of the 
appropriate U.S. standards for grades of processed products, Federal, 
Military, Veterans Administration or other government agency 
specifications, written contract specification, or any written 
specification or instruction which is approved by the Secretary.
    (b) Unless otherwise approved by the Director compliance with such 
grade standards, specifications, or instructions shall be determined by 
evaluating the product, or sample, in accordance with the requirements 
of such standards, specifications, or instructions: Provided, That when 
inspection for quality is based on any U.S. grade standard which 
contains a scoring system the grade to be assigned to a lot is the grade 
indicated by the average of the total scores of the sample units: 
Provided further, That:
    (1) Such sample complies with the applicable standards of quality 
promulgated under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act;
    (2) Such sample complies with the product description;
    (3) Such sample meets the indicated grade with respect to factors of 
quality which are not rated by score points; and
    (4) With respect to those factors of quality which are rated by 
score points, each of the following requirements is met:
    (i) None of the sample units falls more than one grade below the 
indicated grade because of any quality factor to which a limiting rule 
applies;
    (ii) None of the sample units falls more than 4 score points below 
the minimum total score for the indicated grade; and
    (iii) The number of sample units classed as deviants does not exceed 
the applicable acceptance number indicated in the sampling plans 
contained in Sec. 260.61. A ``deviant,'' as used in this paragraph, 
means a sample unit that falls into the next grade below the indicated 
grade but does not score more than 4 points below the minimum total 
score for the indicated grade.
    (5) If any of the provisions contained in paragraphs (b)(3) and (4) 
of this section are not met the grade is determined by considering such 
provisions in connection with succeedingly lower

[[Page 93]]

grades until the grade of the lot, if assignable, is established.



Sec. 260.22  Order of inspection service.

    Inspection service shall be performed, insofar as practicable, in 
the order in which applications therefor are made except that precedence 
may be given to any such applications which are made by the United 
States (including, but not being limited to, any instrumentality or 
agency thereof) and to any application for an appeal inspection.



Sec. 260.23  Postponing inspection service.

    If the inspector determines that it is not possible to accurately 
ascertain the quality or condition of a processed product immediately 
after processing because the product has not reached equilibrium in 
color, or drained weight, or for any other substantial reason, he may 
postpone inspection service for such period as may be necessary.



Sec. 260.24  Financial interest of inspector.

    No inspector shall inspect any processed product in which he is 
directly or indirectly financially interested.



Sec. 260.25  Forms of certificates.

    Inspection certificates, certificates of sampling or loading, and 
other memoranda concerning inspection service shall be issued on forms 
approved by the Secretary.



Sec. 260.26  Issuance of certificates.

    (a) An inspection certificate may be issued only by an inspector: 
Provided, That, another employee of the inspection service may sign any 
such certificate covering any processed product inspected by an 
inspector when given power of attorney by such inspector and authorized 
by the Secretary, to affix the inspector's signature to an inspection 
certificate which has been prepared in accordance with the facts set 
forth in the notes, made by the inspector, in connection with the 
inspection.
    (b) A certificate of loading shall be issued and signed by the 
inspector or licensed sampler authorized to check the loading of a 
specific lot of processed products: Provided, That, another employee of 
the inspection service may sign such certificate of loading covering any 
processed product checkloaded by an inspector or licensed sampler when 
given power of attorney by such inspector or licensed sampler and 
authorized by the Secretary to affix the inspector's or licensed 
sampler's signature to a certificate of loading which has been prepared 
in accordance with the facts set forth in the notes made by the 
inspector or licensed sampler in connection with the checkloading of a 
specific lot of processed products.



Sec. 260.27  Issuance of corrected certificates.

    A corrected inspection certificate may be issued by the inspector 
who issued the original certificate after distribution of a certificate 
if errors, such as incorrect dates, code marks, grade statements, lot or 
car numbers, container sizes, net or drained weights, quantities, or 
errors in any other pertinent information require the issuance of a 
corrected certificate. Whenever a corrected certificate is issued, such 
certificate shall supersede the inspection certificate which was issued 
in error and the superseded certificate shall become null and void after 
the issuance of the corrected certificate.



Sec. 260.28  Issuance of an inspection report in lieu of an inspection
certificate.

    A letter report in lieu of an inspection certificate may be issued 
by an inspector when such action appears to be more suitable than an 
inspection certificate: Provided, That, the issuance of such report is 
approved by the Secretary.



Sec. 260.29  Disposition of inspection certificates.

    The original of any inspection certificate, issued under the 
regulations in this part, and not to exceed four copies thereof, if 
requested prior to issuance, shall be delivered or mailed promptly to 
the applicant, or person designated by the applicant. All other copies 
shall

[[Page 94]]

be filed in such manner as the Secretary may designate. Additional 
copies of any such certificates may be supplied to any interested party 
as provided in Sec. 260.78.



Sec. 260.30  Report of inspection results prior to issuance of formal
report.

    Upon request of any interested party, the results of an inspection 
may be telegraphed or telephoned to him, or to any other person 
designated by him, at his expense.

                            Appeal Inspection



Sec. 260.36  When appeal inspection may be requested.

    An application for an appeal inspection may be made by any 
interested party who is dissatisfied with the results of an inspection 
as stated in an inspection certificate, if the lot of processed products 
can be positively identified by the inspection service as the lot from 
which officially drawn samples were previously inspected. Such 
application shall be made within thirty (30) days following the day on 
which the previous inspection was performed, except upon approval by the 
Secretary the time within which an application for appeal inspection may 
be made, may be extended.



Sec. 260.37  Where to file for an appeal inspection and information
required.

    (a) Application for an appeal inspection may be filed with:
    (1) The inspector who issued the inspection certificate on which the 
appeal covering the processed product is requested; or
    (2) The inspector in charge of the office of inspection at or 
nearest the place where the processed product is located.
    (b) The application for appeal inspection shall state the location 
of the lot of processed products and the reasons for the appeal; and 
date and serial number of the certificate covering inspection of the 
processed product on which the appeal is requested, and such application 
may be accompanied by a copy of the previous inspection certificate and 
any other information that may facilitate inspection. Such application 
may be made orally (in person or by telephone), in writing, or by 
telegraph. If made orally, written confirmation shall be made promptly.



Sec. 260.38  When an application for an appeal inspection may be withdrawn.

    An application for appeal inspection may be withdrawn by the 
applicant at any time before the appeal inspection is performed: 
Provided, That the applicant shall pay at the hourly rate prescribed in 
Sec. 260.70, for the time incurred by the inspector in connection with 
such application, any travel expenses, telephone, telegraph, or other 
expenses which have been incurred by the inspection service in 
connection with such application.

[31 FR 16052, Dec. 15, 1966, as amended at 36 FR 18738, Sept. 21, 1971]



Sec. 260.39  When appeal inspection may be refused.

    An application for an appeal inspection may be refused if:
    (a) The reasons for the appeal inspection are frivolous or not 
substantial;
    (b) The quality or condition of the processed product has undergone 
a material change since the inspection covering the processed product on 
which the appeal inspection is requested;
    (c) The lot in question is not, or cannot be made accessible for the 
selection of officially drawn samples;
    (d) The lot relative to which appeal inspection is requested cannot 
be positively identified by the inspector as the lot from which 
officially drawn samples were previously inspected; or
    (e) There is noncompliance with the regulations in this part. Such 
applicant shall be notified promptly of the reason for such refusal.



Sec. 260.40  Who shall perform appeal inspection.

    An appeal inspection shall be performed by an inspector or 
inspectors (other than the one from whose inspection the appeal is 
requested) authorized for this purpose by the Secretary and, whenever 
practical, such appeal inspection shall be conducted jointly by two such 
inspectors: Provided, That the inspector who made the inspection on 
which the appeal is requested may be authorized to draw the samples when

[[Page 95]]

another inspector or licensed sampler is not available in the area where 
the product is located.



Sec. 260.41  Appeal inspection certificate.

    After an appeal inspection has been completed, an appeal inspection 
certificate shall be issued showing the results of such appeal 
inspection; and such certificate shall supersede the inspection 
certificate previously issued for the processed product involved. Each 
appeal inspection certificate shall clearly identify the number and date 
of the inspection certificate which it supersedes. The superseded 
certificate shall become null and void upon the issuance of the appeal 
inspection certificate and shall no longer represent the quality or 
condition of the processed product described therein. The inspector or 
inspectors issuing an appeal inspection certificate shall forward notice 
of such issuance to such persons as he considers necessary to prevent 
misuse of the superseded certificate if the original and all copies of 
such superseded certificate have not previously been delivered to the 
inspector or inspectors issuing the appeal inspection certificate. The 
provisions in the regulations in this part concerning forms of 
certificates, issuance of certificates, and disposition of certificates 
shall apply to appeal inspection certificates, except that copies of 
such appeal inspection certificates shall be furnished all interested 
parties who received copies of the superseded certificate.

                  Licensing of Samplers and Inspectors



Sec. 260.47  Who may become licensed sampler.

    Any person deemed to have the necessary qualifications may be 
licensed as a licensed sampler to draw samples for the purpose of 
inspection under the regulations in this part. Such a license shall bear 
the printed signature of the Secretary, and shall be countersigned by an 
authorized employee of the Department. Licensed samplers shall have no 
authority to inspect processed products under the regulations in this 
part except as to identification and condition of the containers in a 
lot. A licensed sampler shall perform his duties pursuant to the 
regulations in this part as directed by the Director.



Sec. 260.48  Application to become a licensed sampler.

    Application to become a licensed sampler shall be made to the 
Secretary on forms furnished for that purpose. Each such application 
shall be signed by the applicant in his own handwriting, and the 
information contained therein shall be certified by him to be true, 
complete, and correct to the best of his knowledge and belief, and the 
application shall contain or be accompanied by:
    (a) A statement showing his present and previous occupations, 
together with names of all employers for whom he has worked, with 
periods of service, during the 10 years previous to the date of his 
application;
    (b) A statement that, in his capacity as a licensed sampler, he will 
not draw samples from any lot of processed products with respect to 
which he or his employer is an interested party;
    (c) A statement that he agrees to comply with all terms and 
conditions of the regulations in this part relating to duties of 
licensed samplers; and
    (d) Such other information as may be requested.



Sec. 260.49  Inspectors.

    Inspections will ordinarily be performed by employees under the 
Secretary who are employed as Federal Government employees for that 
purpose. However, any person employed under any joint Federal-State 
inspection service arrangement may be licensed, if otherwise qualified, 
by the Secretary to make inspections in accordance with this part on 
such processed products as may be specified in his license. Such license 
shall be issued only in a case where the Secretary is satisfied that the 
particular person is qualified to perform adequately the inspection 
service for which such person is to be licensed. Each such license shall 
bear the printed signature of the Secretary and shall be countersigned 
by an authorized employee of the Department. An inspector shall perform 
his duties pursuant to the regulations in this part as directed by the 
Director.

[[Page 96]]



Sec. 260.50  Suspension or revocation of license of licensed sampler
or licensed inspector.

    Pending final action by the Secretary, the Director may, whenever he 
deems such action necessary, suspend the license of any licensed 
sampler, or licensed inspector, issued pursuant to the regulations in 
this part, by giving notice of such suspension to the respective 
licensee, accompanied by a statement of the reasons therefor. Within 7 
days after the receipt of the aforesaid notice and statement of reasons 
by such licensee, he may file an appeal, in writing, with the Secretary 
supported by any argument or evidence that he may wish to offer as to 
why his license should not be suspended or revoked. After the expiration 
of the aforesaid 7 day period and consideration of such argument and 
evidence, the Secretary shall take such action as he deems appropriate 
with respect to such suspension or revocation.



Sec. 260.51  Surrender of license.

    Upon termination of his services as a licensed sampler or licensed 
inspector, or suspension or revocation of his license, such licensee 
shall surrender his license immediately to the office of inspection 
serving the area in which he is located. These same provisions shall 
apply in a case of an expired license.

                                Sampling



Sec. 260.57  How samples are drawn by inspectors or licensed samplers.

    An inspector or a licensed sampler shall select samples, upon 
request, from designated lots of processed products which are so placed 
as to permit thorough and proper sampling in accordance with the 
regulations in this part. Such person shall, unless otherwise directed 
by the Secretary, select sample units of such products at random, and 
from various locations in each lot in such manner and number, not 
inconsistent with the regulations in this part, as to secure a 
representative sample of the lot. Samples drawn for inspection shall be 
furnished by the applicant at no cost to the Department.



Sec. 260.58  Accessibility for sampling.

    Each applicant shall cause the processed products for which 
inspection is requested to be made accessible for proper sampling. 
Failure to make any lot accessible for proper sampling shall be 
sufficient cause for postponing inspection service until such time as 
such lot is made accessible for proper sampling.



Sec. 260.59  How officially drawn samples are to be identified.

    Officially drawn samples shall be marked by the inspector or 
licensed sampler so such samples can be properly identified for 
inspection.



Sec. 260.60  How samples are to be shipped.

    Unless otherwise directed by the Secretary, samples which are to be 
shipped to any office of inspection shall be forwarded to the office of 
inspection serving the area in which the processed prodcuts from which 
the samples were drawn is located. Such samples shall be shipped in a 
manner to avoid, if possible, any material change in the quality or 
condition of the sample of the processed product. All transportation 
charges in connection with such shipments of samples shall be at the 
expense of the applicant and wherever practicable, such charges shall be 
prepaid by him.



Sec. 260.61  Sampling plans and procedures for determining lot
compliance.

    (a) Except as otherwise provided for in this section in connection 
with in-plant inspection and unless otherwise approved by the Secretary, 
samples shall be selected from each lot in the exact number of sample 
units indicated for the lot size in the applicable single sampling plan 
or, at the discretion of the inspection service, any comparable multiple 
sampling plan: Provided, That at the discretion of the inspection 
service the number of sample units selected may be increased to the 
exact number of sample units indicated for any one of the larger sample 
sizes provided for in the appropriate plans.
    (b) Under the single sampling plans with respect to any specified 
requirement:

[[Page 97]]

    (1) If the number of deviants (as defined in connection with the 
specific requirements) in the sample does not exceed the acceptance 
number prescribed for the sample size the lot meets the requirement;
    (2) If the number of deviants (as defined in connection with the 
specific requirement) in the sample exceeds the acceptance number 
prescribed for the sample size the lot fails the requirement.
    (c) Under the multiple sampling plans inspection commences with the 
smallest sample size indicated under the appropriate plan and with 
respect to any specified requirement:
    (1) If the number of deviants (as defined in connection with the 
specific requirement) in the sample being considered does not exceed the 
acceptance number prescribed for that sample size the lot meets the 
requirement;
    (2) If the number of deviants (as defined in connection with the 
specific requirement) in the sample being considered equals or exceeds 
the rejection number prescribed for that sample size the lot fails the 
requirement; or
    (3) If the number of deviants (as defined in connection with the 
specific requirement) in the sample being considered falls between the 
acceptance and rejection numbers of the plan, additional sample units 
are added to the sample so that the sample thus cumulated equals the 
next larger cumulative sample size in the plan. It may then be 
determined that the lot meets or fails the specific requirement by 
considering the cumulative sample and applying the procedures outlined 
in paragraphs (c)(1) and (2) of this section or by considering 
successively larger samples cumulated in the same manner until the lot 
meets or fails the specific requirement.
    (d) If in the conduct of any type of in-plant inspection the sample 
is examined before the lot size is known and the number of sample units 
exceeds the prescribed sample size for such lot but does not equal any 
of the prescribed larger sample sizes the lot may be deemed to meet or 
fail a specific requirement in accordance with the following procedure:
    (1) If the number of deviants (as defined in connection with the 
specific requirement) in the nonprescribed sample does not exceed the 
acceptance number of the next smaller sample size the lot meets the 
requirements;
    (2) If the number of deviants (as defined in connection with the 
specific requirement) in the nonprescribed sample equals the acceptance 
number prescribed for the next larger sample size additional sample 
units shall be selected to increase the sample to the next larger 
prescribed sample size;
    (3) If the number of deviants (as defined in connection with the 
specific requirement) in the nonprescribed sample exceeds the acceptance 
number prescribed for the next larger sample size the lot fails the 
requirement.
    (e) In the event that the lot compliance determination provisions of 
a standard or specification are based on the number of specified 
deviations instead of deviants the procedures set forth in this section 
may be applied by substituting the word ``deviation'' for the word 
``deviant'' wherever it appears.
    (f) Sampling plans referred to in this section are those contained 
in Tables I, II, III, IV, V, and VI which follow or any other plans 
which are applicable. For processed products not included in these 
tables, the minimum sample size shall be the exact number of sample 
units prescribed in the table, container group, and lot size that, as 
determined by the inspector, most closely resembles the product, type, 
container size and amount of product to be samples.

[[Page 98]]



                                                                           Single Sampling Plans and Acceptance Levels
                      Table I--Canned or Similarly Processed Fishery Products, and Products Thereof Containing Units of Such Size and Character as to be Readily Separable
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                      Lot size (number of containers)
           Container size group           ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                 group 1
 
Any type of container of less volume than   3,600 or less    3,601-14,400   14,401-48,000   48,001-96,000  156,001-228,000   228,001-300,000   300,001-420,000      Over 420,000
 that of a No. 300 size can (300  407)..                                                  96,001-156,000
 
                 group 2
 
Any type of container of a volume equal     2,400 or less    2,401-12,000   12,001-24,000   24,001-48,000   72,001-108,000   108,001-168,000   168,001-240,000      Over 240,000
 to or exceeding that of a No. 300 size                                                     48,001-72,000
 can, but not exceeding that of a No. 3
 cylinder size can (404  700)...........
 
                 group 3
 
Any type of container of a volume           1,200 or less     1,201-7,200    7,201-15,000   15,001-24,000    24,001-36,000     36,001-60,000     60,001-84,000    84,001-120,000    Over 120,000
 exceeding that of a No. 3 cylinder size
 can, but not exceeding that of a No. 12
 size can (603  812)....................
 
                 group 4
 
Any type of container of a volume             200 or less         201-800       801-1,600     1,601-2,400      2,401-3,600       3,601-8,000      8,001-16,000     16,001-28,000
 exceeding that of a No. 12 size can, but                                                                                                                            Over 28,000
 not exceeding that of a 5-gallon
 container...............................
 
                 group 5
 
Any type of container of a volume              25 or less           26-80          81-200         201-400          401-800         801-1,200       1,201-2,000       2,001-3,200      Over 3,200
 exceeding that of a 5-gallon container..
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[[Page 99]]

 
                                                                                    Single sampling plans \1\
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sample size (number of sample units) \2\.               3               6              13              21               29                38                48                60              72
Acceptance number........................               0               1               2               3                4                 5                 6                 7
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ For extension of the single sample sizes beyond 72 sample units, refer to table V of this section; for multiple sampling plans comparable to the various single sampling plans refer to
  table VI of this section.
\2\ The sample units for the various container size groups are as follows: Groups 1, 2, and 3--1 container and its entire contents. Groups 4 and 5--approximately 2 pounds of product. When
  determined by the inspector that a 2-pound sample unit is inadequate, a larger sample unit may be substituted.


                      Table II--Frozen or Similarly Processed Fishery Products, and Products Thereof Containing Units of Such Size and Character as to be Readily Separable
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                      Lot size (number of containers)
           Container size group           ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                 group 1
 
Any type of container of 1 pound or less    2,400 or less    2,401-12,000   12,001-24,000   24,001-48,000    48,001-72,000    72,001-108,000   108,001-168,000   168,001-240,000    Over 240,000
 net weight..............................
 
                 group 2
 
Any type of container over 1 pound but      1,800 or less     1,801-8,400    8,401-18,000   18,001-36,000    36,001-60,000     60,001-96,000    96,001-132,000   132,001-168,000    Over 168,000
 not over 4 pounds net weight............
 
                 group 3
 
Any type of container over 4 pounds but       900 or less       901-3,600    3,601-10,800   10,801-18,000    18,001-36,000     36,001-60,000     60,001-84,000    84,001-120,000    Over 120,000
 not over 10 pounds net weight...........
 
                 group 4
 
Any type of container over 10 pounds but      200 or less         201-800       801-1,600     1,601-2,400      2,401-3,600       3,601-8,000      8,001-16,000     16,001-28,000     Over 28,000
 not over 100 pounds net weight..........
 
                 group 5
 
Any type of container over 100 pounds net      25 or less           26-80          81-200         201-400          401-800         801-1,200       1,201-2,000       2,001-3,200      Over 3,200
 weight..................................
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                    Single sampling plans \1\
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sample size (number of sample units) \2\.               3               6              13              21               29                38                48                60              72

[[Page 100]]

 
Acceptance number........................               0               1               2               3                4                 5                 6                 7               8
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ For extension of the single sample sizes beyond 72 sample units, refer to table V of this section; for multiple sampling plans comparable to the various single sampling plans refer to
  table VI of this section.
\2\ The sample units for the various container size groups are as follows: Groups 1, 2, and 3--1 container and its entire contents. Groups 4 and 5--approximately 3 pounds of product. When
  determined by the inspector that a 3-pound sample unit is inadequate, a larger sample unit or 1 or more containers and their entire contents may be substituted for 1 or more sample units of
  3 pounds.


                        Table III--Canned, Frozen, or Otherwise Processed Fishery and Related Products, and Products Thereof of a Comminuted, Fluid, or Homogeneous State
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                        Lot size (number of containers)
           Container size group \1\           --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                   group 1
 
Any type of container of 12 ounces or less...      5,400 or  5,401-21,600   21,601-62,400   62,401-112,000   112,001-174,000   174,001-240,000   240,001-360,000   360,001-480,000  Over 480,000
                                                       less
 
                   group 2
 
Any type of container over 12 ounces but not       3,600 or  3,601-14,400   14,401-48,000    48,001-96,000    96,001-156,000   156,001-228,000   228,001-300,000   300,001-420,000  Over 420,000
 over 60 ounces..............................          less
 
                   group 3
 
Any type of container over 60 ounces but not       1,800 or   1,801-8,400    8,401-18,000    18,001-60,000     36,001-60,000     60,001-96,000    96,001-132,000   132,001-168,000  Over 168,000
 over 160 ounces.............................          less
 
                   group 4
 
Any type of container over 160 ounces but not   200 or less       201-800       801-1,600      1,601-3,200       3,201-8,000      8,001-16,000     16,001-24,000     24,001-32,000   Over 32,000
 over 10 gallons or 100 pounds whichever is
 applicable..................................
 
                   group 5
 
Any type of container over 10 gallons or 100     25 or less         26-80          81-200          201-400           401-800         801-1,200       1,201-2,000       2,001-3,200    Over 3,200
 pounds whichever is applicable..............
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                    Single sampling plans \2\
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sample size (number of sample units) \3\.....             3             6              13               21                29                38                48                60            72

[[Page 101]]

 
Acceptance number............................             0             1               2                3                 4                 5                 6                 7             8
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Ounces pertain to either fluid ounces of volume or avoirdupois ounces of net weight whichever is applicable for the product involved.
\2\ For extension of the single sample sizes beyond 72 sample units, refer to table V of this section; for multiple sampling plans comparable to the various single sampling plans refer to
  table VI of this section.
\3\ The sample units for the various container size groups are as follows: Groups 1, 2, and 3--1 container and its entire contents. A smaller sample unit may be substituted in group 3 at the
  inspector's discretion. Groups 4, 5, and 6--approximately 16 ounces of product. When determined by the inspector that a 16-ounce sample unit is inadequate, a larger sample unit may be
  substituted.


                                                                        Table IV--Dehydrated Fishery and Related Products
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                      Lot size (number of containers)
          Container size group           -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                 group 1
 
Any type of container of 1 pound or less   1,800 or less     1,801-8,400    8,401-18,000   18,001-36,000     36,001-60,000     60,001-96,000    96,001-132,000   132,001-168,000    Over 168,000
 net weight.............................
 
                 group 2
 
Any type of container over 1 pound but       900 or less       901-3,600    3,601-10,800   10,801-18,000     18,001-36,000     36,001-60,000     60,001-84,000    84,001-120,000    Over 120,000
 not over 6 pounds net weight...........
 
                 group 3
 
Any type of container over 6 pounds but      200 or less         201-800       801-1,600     1,601-3,200       3,201-8,000      8,001-16,000     16,001-24,000     24,001-32,000     Over 32,000
 not over 20 pounds net weight..........
 
                 group 4
 
Any type of container over 20 pounds but      48 or less          49-400       401-1,200     1,201-2,000       2,001-2,800       2,801-6,000       6,001-9,600      9,601-15,000     Over 15,000
 not over 100 pounds net weight.........
 
                 group 5
 
Any type of container over 100 pounds         16 or less           17-80          81-200         201-400           401-800         801-1,200       1,201-2,000       2,001-3,200      Over 3,200
 net weight.............................
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                    Single sampling plans \1\
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sample size (number of sample units) \2\               3               6              13              21                29                38                48                60              72
Acceptance number.......................               0               1               2               3                 4                 5                 6                 7               8
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ For extension of the single sample sizes beyond 72 sample units, refer to table V of this section; for multiple sampling plans comparable to the various single sampling plans refer to
  table VI of this section.
\2\ The sample units for the various container size groups are as follows: Group 1--1 container and its entire contents. Groups 2, 3, 4, and 5--1 container and its entire contents or a smaller
  sample unit when determined by the inspector to be adequate.


[[Page 102]]


                                                     Table V--Single Sampling Plans for Use in Increasing Sample Size Beyond 72 Sample Units
Sample size, n.....................................................   84   96  108  120  132  144  156  168  180  192  204  216  230  244  258  272  286  300  314  328  342  356  370  384  400
Acceptance numbers, c..............................................    9   10   11   12   13   14   15   16   17   18   19   20   21   22   23   24   25   26   27   28   29   30   31   32   33
 


                                                               Multiple Sampling Plans \1\
                                   Table VI--Multiple Sampling Plans Comparable to the Indicated Single Sampling Plans
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Indicated single sampling plan:
  Single sample size, n.........         6             13             21             29             38             48             60             72
                                 -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
  Acceptance numbers, c.........         1              2              3              4              5              6              7              8
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Cumulative sample sizes, nc, and   nc    c    r   nc    c    r   nc    c    r   nc    c    r   nc    c    r   nc    c    r   nc    c    r   nc    c    r
 acceptance numbers, c,
    and rejection numbers, r,       4    0    2    8    0    3   10    0    3   12    0    4   14    0    4   16    0    4   18    0    5   22    0    5
     for multiple sampling.
                                    6    0    2   10    0    3   14    1    4   16    0    4   20    0    5   24    1    5   28    1    6   32    1    7
                                    8    1    2   12    1    3   18    1    4   20    1    5   26    1    6   32    2    6   38    2    7   42    2    8
                                                  14    2    3   22    2    5   24    2    5   32    2    6   40    3    8   48    3    8   52    3    9
                                                                 26    4    5   28    3    6   38    3    7   48    4    8   58    4    8   62    5   10
                                                                                32    3    6   44    6    7   56    7    8   68    8    9   72    6   10
                                                                                36    5    6                                                82    9   10
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ These multiple sampling plans may be used in lieu of the single sampling plans listed at the heading of each column.


[[Page 103]]



Sec. 260.62  Issuance of certificate of sampling.

    Each inspector and each licensed sampler shall prepare and sign a 
certificate of sampling to cover the samples drawn by the respective 
person, except that an inspector who inspects the samples which he has 
drawn need not prepare a certificate of sampling. One copy of each 
certificate of sampling prepared shall be retained by the inspector or 
licensed sampler (as the case may be) and the original and all other 
copies thereof shall be disposed of in accordance with the instructions 
of the Secretary.



Sec. 260.63  Identification of lots sampled.

    Each lot from which officially drawn samples are selected shall be 
marked in such manner as may be prescribed by the Secretary, if such 
lots do not otherwise possess suitable identification.

                            Fees and Charges



Sec. 260.69  Payment fees and charges.

    Fees and charges for any inspection service shall be paid by the 
interested party making the application for such service, in accordance 
with the applicable provisions of the regulations in this part, and, if 
so required by the person in charge of the office of inspection serving 
the area where the services are to be performed, an advance of funds 
prior to rendering inspection service in an amount suitable to the 
Secretary, or a surety bond suitable to the Secretary, may be required 
as a guarantee of payment for the services rendered. All fees and 
charges for any inspection service, performed pursuant to the 
regulations in this part shall be paid by check, draft, or money order 
made payable to the National Marine Fisheries Service. Such check, 
draft, or money order shall be remitted to the appropriate regional or 
area office serving the geographical area in which the services are 
performed, within ten (10) days from the date of billing, unless 
otherwise specified in a contract between the applicant and the 
Secretary, in which latter event the contract provisions shall apply.

[36 FR 21038, Nov. 3, 1971]



Sec. 260.70  Schedule of fees.

    (a) Unless otherwise provided in a written agreement between the 
applicant and the Secretary, the fees to be charged and collected for 
any inspection service performed under the regulations in this part at 
the request of the United States, or any other agency or instrumentality 
thereof, will be published as a notice in the Federal Register and will 
be in accordance with Sec. 260.81.
    (b) Fees are reviewed annually to ascertain that the hourly fees 
charged are adequate to recover the costs of the services rendered.
    (1) The TYPE I (Contract Inspection) hourly fee is determined by 
dividing the estimated annual costs by the estimated annual billable 
hours.
    (2) The TYPE II (Lot Inspection) hourly fee is determined by adding 
a factor of 50 percent to the TYPE I fee, to cover additional costs 
(down-time, etc.) associated with conducting lot inspection services.
    (3) The TYPE III (Miscellaneous and Consulting) hourly fee is 
determined by adding a factor of 25 percent to the TYPE I fee, to cover 
the additional costs (down-time, etc.) associated with conducting 
miscellaneous inspection services.

[48 FR 24901, June 3, 1983]



Sec. 260.71  [Reserved]



Sec. 260.72  Fees for inspection service performed under cooperative
agreement.

    The fees to be charged and collected for any inspection or similar 
service performed under cooperative agreement shall be those provided 
for by such agreement.



Sec. 260.73  Disposition of fees for inspections made under cooperative
agreement.

    Fees for inspection under a cooperative agreement with any State or 
person shall be disposed of in accordance with the terms of such 
agreement. Such portion of the fees collected under a cooperative 
agreement as may be due the United States shall be remitted in 
accordance with Sec. 260.69.

[[Page 104]]



Sec. 260.74  Fee for appeal inspection.

    The fee to be charged for an appeal inspection shall be at the rates 
prescribed in this part for other inspection services: Provided, That, 
if the result of any appeal inspection made for any applicant, other 
than the United States or any agency or instrumentality thereof, 
discloses that a material error was made in the inspection on which the 
appeal is made, no inspection fee shall be assessed.



Sec. 260.76  [Reserved]



Sec. 260.77  Fees for score sheets.

    If the applicant for inspection service requests score sheets 
showing in detail the inspection of each container or sample inspected 
and listed thereon, such score sheets may be furnished by the inspector 
in charge of the office of inspection serving the area where the 
inspection was performed; and such applicant shall be changed at the 
rate of $2.75 for each 12 sampled units, or fraction thereof, inspected 
and listed on such score sheets.



Sec. 260.78  Fees for additional copies of inspection certificates.

    Additional copies of any inspection certificate other than those 
provided for in Sec. 260.29, may be supplied to any interested party 
upon payment of a fee of $2.75 for each set of five (5) or fewer copies.



Sec. 260.79  Travel and other expenses.

    Charges may be made to cover the cost of travel and other expenses 
incurred in connection with the performance of any inspection service, 
including appeal inspections: Provided, That, if charges for sampling or 
inspection are based on an hourly rate, an additional hourly charge may 
be made for travel time including time spent waiting for transportation 
as well as time spent traveling, but not to exceed 8 hours of travel 
time for any one person for any one day: And provided further, That, if 
travel is by common carrier, no hourly charge may be made for travel 
time outside the employee's official work hours.



Sec. 260.80  Charges for inspection service on a contract basis.

    Irrespective of fees and charges prescribed in the foregoing 
sections, the Secretary may enter into a written memorandum of 
understanding or contract, whichever may be appropriate, with any 
administrative agency charged with the administration of a marketing 
order effective pursuant to the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 
1937, as revised (16 U.S.C. 661 et seq.) for the making of inspections 
pursuant to said agreement or order on such basis as will reimburse the 
National Marine Fisheries Service of the Department for the full cost of 
rendering such inspection service as may be determined by the Secretary. 
Likewise, the Secretary may enter into a written memorandum of 
understanding or contract, whichever may be appropriate, with an 
administrative agency charged with the administration of a similar 
program operated pursuant to the laws of any State.

[36 FR 21038, Nov. 3, 1971]



Sec. 260.81  Readjustment and increase in hourly rates of fees.

    (a) When Federal Pay Act increases occur, the hourly rates for 
inspection fees will automatically be increased on the effective date of 
the pay act by an amount equal to the increase received by the average 
GS grade level of fishery product inspectors receiving such pay 
increases.
    (b) The hourly rates of fees to be charged for inspection services 
will be subject to review and reevaluation for possible readjustment not 
less than every 3 years: Provided, That, the hourly rates of fees to be 
charged for inspection services will be immediately reevaluated as to 
need for readjustment with each Federal Pay Act increase.

[35 FR 15925, Oct. 9, 1970]

                              Miscellaneous



Sec. 260.84  Policies and procedures.

    The policies and procedures pertaining to any of the inspection 
services are contained within the NMFS Fishery Products Inspection 
Manual.

[[Page 105]]

The policies and procedures are available from the Secretary to any 
interested party by writing to Document Approval and Supply Services 
Branch, Inspection Services Division, P.O. Drawer 1207, 3207 Frederic 
St., Pascagoula, MS 39568-1207.

[61 FR 9369, Mar. 8, 1996]



Sec. 260.86  Approved identification.

    (a) Grade marks: The approved grade mark or identification may be 
used on containers, labels, or otherwise indicated for any processed 
product that:
    (1) Has been packed under inspection as provided in this part to 
assure compliance with the requirements for wholesomeness established 
for the raw product and of sanitation established for the preparation 
and processing operations, and (2) has been certified by an inspector as 
meeting the requirements of such grade, quality or classification.

The grade marks approved for use shall be similar in form and design to 
the examples of Figures 1 to 5 of this section.

Shield using red, white, and blue background or other colors appropriate 
                              for label.  
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TC01JY91.061

                                Figure 1

                     Shield with plain background.  
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TC01JY91.062

                                Figure 2
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TC01JY91.063

                                Figure 3
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TC01JY91.064

                                Figure 4
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TC01JY91.065

                                Figure 5
    (b) Inspection marks: The approved inspection marks may be used on 
containers, labels, or otherwise indicated for any processed product 
that:
    (1) Has been packed under inspection as provided in this part to 
assure compliance with the requirements for wholesomeness established 
for the raw product and of sanitation established for the preparation 
and processing operations, and (2) has been certified by

[[Page 106]]

an inspector as meeting the requirements of such quality or grade 
classification as may be approved by the Secretary.

The inspection marks approved for use shall be similar in form and 
design to the examples in Figures 6, 7, and 8 of this section.

                  Statement enclosed within a circle.  
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TC01JY91.066

                                Figure 6

               Statement without the use of the circle.  
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TC01JY91.067

                                Figure 7

               Statement without the use of the circle.  
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TC01JY91.068

                                Figure 8
    (c) Combined grade and inspection marks: The grade marks set forth 
in paragraph (a) of this section, and the inspection marks, Figures 7 
and 8, set forth in paragraph (b) of this section, may be combined into 
a consolidated grade and inspection mark for use on processed products 
that have been packed under inspection as provided in this part.
    (d) Products not eligible for approved identification: Processed 
products which have not been packed under inspection as provided in this 
part shall not be identified by approved grade or inspection marks, but 
such products may be inspected on a lot inspection basis as provided in 
this part and identified by an authorized representative of the 
Department by stamping the shipping cases and inspection certificate(s) 
covering such lot(s) as appropriate, with marks similar in form and 
design to the examples in Figures 9 and 10 of this section.  
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TC01JY91.069

                                Figure 9

[[Page 107]]

[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TC01JY91.070

                                Figure 10
    (e) Removal of labels bearing inspection marks: At the time a lot of 
fishery products is found to be mislabeled and the labels on the 
packages are not removed within ten (10) consecutive calendar days, the 
following procedure shall be applicable:
    (1) The processor, under the supervision of the inspector, shall 
clearly and conspicuously mark all master cases in the lot by means of a 
``rejected by USDC Inspector'' stamp provided by the Department.
    (2) The processor shall be held accountable to the Department for 
all mislabeled products until the products are properly labeled.
    (3) Clearance for the release of the relabeled products shall be 
obtained by the processor from the inspector.
    (f) Users of inspection services having an inventory of labels which 
bear official approved identification marks stating ``U.S. Department of 
the Interior'' or otherwise referencing the Interior Department, will be 
permitted to use such marks until December 31, 1971, except that upon 
written request the Director, National Marine Fisheries Service, may 
extend such period for the use of specific labels.

[36 FR 4609, Mar. 10, 1971]



Sec. 260.88  Political activity.

    All inspectors and licensed samplers are forbidden, during the 
period of their respective appointments or licenses, to take an active 
part in political management or in political campaigns. Political 
activities in city, county, State, or national elections, whether 
primary or regular, or in behalf of any party or candidate, or any 
measure to be voted upon, are prohibited. This applies to all appointees 
or licensees, including, but not limited to, temporary and cooperative 
employees and employees on leave of absence with or without pay. Willful 
violation of this section will constitute grounds for dismissal in the 
case of appointees and revocation of licenses in the case of licensees.



Sec. 260.90  Compliance with other laws.

    None of the requirements in the regulations in this part shall 
excuse failure to comply with any Federal, State, county, or municipal 
laws applicable to the operation of food processing establishments and 
to processed food products.



Sec. 260.91  Identification.

    Each inspector and licensed sampler shall have in his possession at 
all times and present upon request, while on duty, the means of 
identification furnished by the Department to such person.



Sec. 260.93  Debarment and suspension.

    (a) Debarment. Any person may be debarred from using or benefiting 
from the inspection service provided under the regulations of this 
subchapter or under the terms of any inspection contract, and such 
debarment may apply to one or more plants under his control, if such 
person engages in one or more of the following acts or activities:
    (1) Misrepresenting, misstating, or withholding any material or 
relevant facts or information in conjunction with any application or 
request for an inspection contract, inspection service, inspection 
appeal, lot inspection, or other service provided for under the 
regulations of this subchapter.
    (2) Using on a processed product any label which displays any 
official identification, official device, or official mark, when the 
label is not currently approved for use by the Director or his delegate.

[[Page 108]]

    (3) Using on a processed product any label which displays the words 
``Packed Under Federal Inspection, U.S. Department of Commerce'', or 
which displays any official mark, official device, or official 
identification, or which displays a facsimile of the foregoing, when 
such product has not been inspected under the regulations of this 
subchapter.
    (4) Making any statement or reference to the U.S. Grade of any 
processed product or any inspection service provided under the 
regulations of this subchapter on the label or in the advertising of any 
processed product, when such product has not been inspected under the 
regulations of this subchapter.
    (5) Making, using, issuing or attempting to issue or use in 
conjunction with the sale, shipment, transfer or advertisement of a 
processed product any certificate of loading, certificate of sampling, 
inspection certificate, official device, official identification, 
official mark, official document, or score sheet which has not been 
issued, approved, or authorized for use with such product by an 
inspector.
    (6) Using any of the terms ``United States'', ``Officially graded'', 
``Officially inspected'', ``Government inspected'', ``Federally 
inspected'', ``Officially sampled'', or words of similar import or 
meanings, or using any official device, official identification, or 
official mark on the label, on the shipping container, or in the 
advertising of any processed product, when such product has not been 
inspected under the regulations of this subchapter.
    (7) Using, attempting to use, altering or reproducing any 
certificate, certificate form, design, insignia, mark, shield, device, 
or figure which simulates in whole or in part any official mark, 
official device, official identification, certificate of loading, 
certificate of sampling, inspection certificate or other official 
certificate issued pursuant to the regulations of this subchapter.
    (8) Assaulting, harassing, interfering, obstructing or attempting to 
interfere or obstruct any inspector or sampler in the performance of his 
duties under the regulations of this subchapter.
    (9) Violating any one or more of the terms of any inspection 
contract or the provisions of the regulations of this subchapter.
    (10) Engaging in acts or activities which destroy or interfere with 
the purposes of the inspection program or which have the effect of 
undermining the integrity of the inspection program.
    (b) Temporary suspension. (1) Whenever the Director has reasonable 
cause to believe that any person has engaged in any act or activity 
described in paragraph (a) of this section, and in such act or activity, 
in the judgment of the Director, would cause serious and irreparable 
injury to the inspection program and services provided under the 
regulations of this subchapter, the Director may, without a hearing, 
temporarily suspend, either before or after the institution of a 
debarment hearing, the inspection service provided under the regulations 
of this subchapter or under any inspection contract for one or more 
plants under the control of such person. Notice of suspension shall be 
served by registered or certified mail, return receipt requested, and 
the notice shall specifically state those acts or activities of such 
person which are the bases for the suspension. The suspension shall 
become effective five (5) days after receipt of the notice.
    (2) Once a person has received a notice of a temporary suspension, a 
debarment hearing will be set for 30 days after the effective date of 
the suspension. Within 60 days after the completion of the debarment 
hearing, the Hearing Examiner shall determine, based upon evidence of 
record, whether the temporary suspension shall be continued or 
terminated. A temporary suspension shall be terminated by the Hearing 
Examiner if he determines that the acts or activities, which were the 
bases for the suspension, did not occur or will not cause serious and 
irreparable injury to the inspection program and services provided under 
the regulations of this subchapter. This determination of the Hearing 
Examiner on the continuation or termination of the temporary suspension 
shall be final and there shall be no appeal of this determination. The 
initial decision by the Hearing Examiner on the debarment shall be made 
in accordance with

[[Page 109]]

paragraph (b)(1), Decisions, of this section.
    (3) After a debarment hearing has been instituted against any person 
by a suspension, such suspension will remain in effect until a final 
decision is rendered on the debarment in accordance with the regulations 
of this section or the temporary suspension is terminated by the Hearing 
Examiner.
    (4) When a debarment hearing has been instituted against any person 
not under suspension, the Director may, in accordance with the 
regulations of this paragraph (b) temporarily suspend such person, and 
the suspension will remain in effect until a final decision on the 
debarment is rendered in accordance with the regulations of this section 
or the temporary suspension is terminated by the Hearing Examiner.
    (c) Hearing Examiner. All hearing shall be held before a Hearing 
Examiner appointed by the Secretary or the Director.
    (d) Hearing. If one or more of the acts or activities described in 
paragraph (a) of this section have occurred, the Director may institute 
a hearing to determine the length of time during which the person shall 
be debarred and those plants to which the debarment shall apply. No 
person may be debarred unless there is a hearing, as prescribed in this 
section, and it has been determined by the Hearing Examiner, based on 
evidence of record, that the one or more of the activities described in 
paragraph (a) of this section have occurred. Any debarment or suspension 
must be instituted within two (2) years of the time when such acts or 
activities described in paragraph (a) of this section have occurred.
    (e) Notice of hearing. The Director shall notify such person of the 
debarment hearing by registered or certified mail, return receipt 
requested. The notice shall set forth the time and place of the hearing, 
the specific acts or activities which are the basis for the debarment 
hearing, the time period of debarment being sought, and those plants to 
which the debarment shall apply. Except for the debarment hearing 
provided for in paragraph (b) of this section the hearing will be set 
for a time not longer than 120 days after receipt of the notice of 
hearing.
    (f) Time and place of hearing. The hearing shall be held at a time 
and place fixed by the Director: Provided, however, The Hearing Examiner 
may, upon a proper showing of inconvenience, change the time and place 
of the hearing. Motions for change of time or place of the hearing must 
be mailed to or served upon the Hearing Examiner no later than 10 days 
before the hearing.
    (g) Right to counsel. In all proceedings under this section, all 
persons and the Department of Commerce shall have the right to be 
represented by counsel, in accordance with the rules and regulations set 
forth in title 43, Code of Federal Regulations, part 1.
    (h) Form, execution, and service of documents. (1) All papers to be 
filed under the regulations in this section shall be clear and legible; 
and shall be dated, signed in ink, contain the docket description and 
title of the proceeding, if any, and the address of the signatory. Five 
copies of all papers are required to be filed. Documents filed shall be 
executed by:
    (i) The person or persons filing same,
    (ii) by an authorized officer thereof if it be a corporation or,
    (iii) by an attorney or other person having authority with respect 
thereto.
    (2) All documents, when filed, shall show that service has been made 
upon all parties to the proceeding. Such service shall be made by 
delivering one copy to each party in person or by mailing by first-class 
mail, properly addressed with postage prepaid. When a party has appeared 
by attorney or other representative, service on such attorney or other 
representative will be deemed service upon the party. The date of 
service of document shall be the day when the matter served is deposited 
in the U.S. mail, shown by the postmark thereon, or is delivered in 
person, as the case may be.
    (3) A person is deemed to have appeared in a hearing by the filing 
with the Director a written notice of his appearance or his authority in 
writing to appear on behalf of one of the persons to the hearing.
    (4) The original of every document filed under this section and 
required to

[[Page 110]]

be served upon all parties to a proceeding shall be accompanied by a 
certificate of service signed by the party making service, stating that 
such service has been made upon each party to the proceeding. 
Certificates of service may be in substantially the following form:

    I hereby certify that I have this day served the foregoing document 
upon all parties of record in this proceeding by: (1) Mailing postage 
prepaid, (2) delivering in person, a copy to each party.
    Dated at __________ this _____ day of ______, 19__
                                              Signature ________________

    (i) Procedures and evidence. (1) All parties to a hearing shall be 
entitled to introduce all relevant evidence on the issues as stated in 
the notice for hearing or as determined by the Hearing Examiner at the 
outset of or during the hearing.
    (2) Technical rules of evidence shall not apply to hearings 
conducted pursuant to this section, but rules or principles designed to 
assure production of the most credible evidence available and to subject 
testimony to test by cross-examination shall be applied where reasonably 
necessary.
    (j) Duties of Hearing Examiner. The Hearing Examiner shall have the 
authority and duty to:
    (1) Take or cause depositions to be taken.
    (2) Regulate the course of the hearings.
    (3) Prescribe the order in which evidence shall be presented.
    (4) Dispose of procedural requests or similar matters.
    (5) Hear and initially rule upon all motions and petitions before 
him.
    (6) Administer oaths and affirmations.
    (7) Rule upon offers of proof and receive competent, relevant, 
material, reliable, and probative evidence.
    (8) Control the admission of irrelevant, immaterial, incompetent, 
unreliable, repetitious, or cumulative evidence.
    (9) Hear oral arguments if the Hearing Examiner determined such 
requirement is necessary.
    (10) Fix the time for filing briefs, motions, and other documents to 
be filed in connection with hearings.
    (11) Issue the initial decision and dispose of any other pertinent 
matters that normally and properly arise in the course of proceedings.
    (12) Do all other things necessary for an orderly and impartial 
hearing.
    (k) The record. (1) The Director will designate an official reporter 
for all hearings. The official transcript of testimony taken, together 
with any exhibits and briefs filed therewith, shall be filed with the 
Director. Transcripts of testimony will be available in any proceeding 
under the regulations of this section, at rates fixed by the contract 
between the United States of America and the reporter. If the reporter 
is an employee of the Department of Commerce, the rate will be fixed by 
the Director.
    (2) The transcript of testimony and exhibits, together with all 
briefs, papers, and all rulings by the Hearing Examiner shall constitute 
the record. The initial decision will be predicated on the same record, 
as will be final decision.
    (l) Decisions. (1) The Hearing Examiner shall render the initial 
decision in all debarment proceedings before him. The same Hearing 
Examiner who presides at the hearing shall render the initial decision 
except when such Examiner becomes unavailable to the Department of 
Commerce. In such case, another Hearing Examiner will be designated by 
the Secretary or Director to render the initial decision. Briefs, or 
other documents, to be submitted after the hearing must be received not 
later than twenty (20) days after the hearing, unless otherwise extended 
by the Hearing Examiner upon motion by a party. The initial decision 
shall be made within sixty (60) days after the receipt of all briefs. If 
no appeals from the initial decision is served upon the Director within 
ten (10) days of the date of the initial decision, it will become the 
final decision on the 20th day following the date of the initial 
decision. If an appeal is received, the appeal will be transmitted to 
the Secretary who will render the final decision after considering the 
record and the appeal.
    (2) All initial and final decisions shall include a statement of 
findings and conclusions, as well as the reasons or bases therefore, 
upon the material

[[Page 111]]

issues presented. A copy of each decision shall be served on the parties 
to the proceeding, and furnished to interested persons upon request.
    (3) It shall be the duty of the Hearing Examiner, and the Secretary 
where there is an appeal, to determine whether the person has engaged in 
one or more of the acts or activities described in paragraph (a) of this 
section, and, if there is a finding that the person has engaged in such 
acts or activities, the length of time the person shall be debarred, and 
the plants to which the debarment shall apply.

[31 FR 16052, Dec. 15, 1966, as amended at 36 FR 18738, Sept. 21, 1971]

   Requirements for Plants Operating Under Continuous Inspection on a 
                           Contract Basis \1\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ Compliance with the above requirements does not excuse failure 
to comply with all applicable sanitary rules and regulations of city, 
county, State, Federal, or other agencies having jursidiction over such 
establishments and operations.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------



Sec. 260.96  Application for fishery products inspection service on a
contract basis at official establishments.

    Any person desiring to process and pack products in an establishment 
under fishery products inspection service on a contract basis, must 
receive approval of such buildings and facilities as an official 
establishment prior to the inauguration of such service. An application 
for inspection service to be rendered in an establishment shall be 
approved according to the following procedure:
    (a) Initial survey: When application has been filed for inspection 
service as aforesaid, NMFS inspector(s) shall examine the buildings, 
premises, and facilities according to the requirements of the fishery 
products inspection service and shall specify any additional facilities 
required for the service.
    (b) Final survey and establishment approval: Prior to the 
inauguration of the fishery products inspection service, a final survey 
of the buildings, premises, and facilities shall be made to verify that 
the buildings are constructed and facilities are in accordance with the 
approved drawings and the regulations in this part.
    (c) Drawings and specifications of new construction or proposed 
alterations of existing official establishments shall be furnished to 
the Director in advance of actual construction for prior approval with 
regard to compliance with requirements for facilities.

[36 FR 21039, Nov. 3, 1971]



Sec. 260.97  Conditions for providing fishery products inspection

    (a) The determination as to the inspection effort required to 
adequately provide inspection service at any establishment will be made 
by NMFS. The man-hours required may vary at different official 
establishments due to factors such as, but not limited to, size and 
complexity of operations, volume and variety of products produced, and 
adequacy of control systems and cooperation. The inspection effort 
requirement may be reevaluated when the contracting party or NMFS deems 
there is sufficient change in production, equipment and change of 
quality control input to warrant reevaluation. Inspectors will not be 
available to perform any of employee or management duties, however, they 
will be available for consultation purposes. NMFS reserves the right to 
reassign inspectors as it deems necessary.
    (b) NMFS shall not be held responsible:
    (1) For damages occurring through any act of commission or omission 
on the part of its inspectors when engaged in performing services; or
    (2) For production errors, such as processing temperatures, length 
of process, or misbranding of products; or
    (3) For failure to supply enough inspection effort during any period 
of service.
    (c) The contracting party will:
    (1) Use only wholesome raw material which has been handled or stored 
under sanitary conditions and is suitable for processings; maintain the 
official establishment(s), designated on the contract in such sanitary 
condition and to employ such methods of handling raw

[[Page 112]]

materials for processing as may be necessary to conform to the sanitary 
requirements precribed or approved by NMFS;
    (2) Adequately code each primary container and master case of 
products sold or otherwise distributed from a manufacturing, processing, 
packing, or repackaging activity to enable positive lot identification 
to facilitate, where necessary, the segregation of specific food lots 
that may have become contaminated or otherwise unfit for their intended 
use;
    (3) Not permit any labels on which reference is made to Federal 
inspection, to be used on any product which is not packed under fishery 
products inspection service nor permit any labels on which reference is 
made to any U.S. Grade to be used on any product which has not been 
officially certified as meeting the requirements of such grade; nor 
supply labels bearing reference to Federal inspection to another 
establishment unless the products to which such labels are to be applied 
have been packed under Federal inspection at an official establishment;
    (4) Not affix any label on which reference is made to Federal 
inspection to any container of processed foods, produced in any 
designated official establishment, with respect to which the grade of 
such product is not certified because of adulteration due to the 
presence of contaminants in excess of limits established in accordance 
with the regulations or guidelines issued pursuant to the Food, Drug, 
and Cosmetic Act, as amended;
    (5) Not, with respect to any product for which U.S. Grade Standards 
are in effect, affix any label on which reference is made to Federal 
inspection to any container of processed food which is substandard: 
Provided, That such label may be affixed to any container of such 
substandard quality product if such label bears a statement to indicate 
the substandard quality;
    (6) Not, with respect to any product for which U.S. Grade Standard 
are not in effect, affix any label on which reference is made to the 
Federal inspection to containers of processed foods, except with the 
approval of NMFS;
    (7) Furnish such reports of processing, packaging, grading, 
laboratory analyses, and output of products inspected, processed, and 
packaged at the designated official establish-ment(s) as may be 
requested by NMFS, subject to the approval of the Bureau of the Budget 
in accordance with the Federal Reports Act of 1942;
    (8) Make available for use by inspectors, adequate office space in 
the designated official establishment(s) and furnish suitable desks, 
office equipment, and files for the proper care and storage of 
inspection records;
    (9) Make laboratory facilities and necessary equipment available for 
the use of inspectors to inspect samples of processed foods and/or 
components thereof;
    (10) Furnish and provide laundry service, as required by NMFS, for 
coats, trousers, smocks, and towels used by inspectors during 
performance of duty in official establishment(s);
    (11) Furnish stenographic and clerical assistance as may be 
necessary in the typing of certificates and reports and the handling of 
official correspondence, as well as furnish the labor incident to the 
drawing and grading of samples and other work required to facilitate 
adequate inspection procedures whenever necessary;
    (12) Submit to NMFS, three (3) copies of new product specifications 
in a manner prescribed by NMFS, and three (3) end-product samples for 
evaluation and/or laboratory analysis on all products for approval, for 
which U.S. Grade Standards are not available, when inspection is to be 
applied to such products. If requested of NMFS, such new specifications 
and end-product samples shall be considered confidential;
    (13) Submit, as required by NMFS, for approval, proofs prior to 
printing and thereafter four (4) copies of any finished label which may 
or may not bear official identification marks, when such products are 
packed under Federal inspection on a contract basis;
    (14) Not make deceptive, fraudulent, or unauthorized use in 
advertising, or otherwise, of the fishery products inspection service, 
the inspection certificates or reports issued, or the containers on 
which official identification marks are embossed or otherwise 
identified, in connection with the sale of any processed products;

[[Page 113]]

    (15) Submit to NMFS, four (4) copies of each label which may or may 
not bear official identification marks, when such labels are to be 
withdrawn from inspection or when approved labels are disapproved for 
further use under inspection;
    (16) Notify NMFS in advance of the proposed use of any labels which 
require obliteration of any official identification marks, and all 
reference to the inspection service on approved labels which have been 
withdrawn or disapproved for use;
    (17) Accord representatives of NMFS at all reasonable times free and 
immediate access to establishment(s) and official establishment(s) under 
applicant's control for the purpose of checking codes, coded products, 
coding devices, coding procedures, official identification marks 
obliteration, and use of withdrawn or disapproved labels.
    (d) Termination of inspection services:
    (1) The fishery products inspection service, including the issuance 
of inspection reports, shall be rendered from the date of the 
commencement specified in the contract and continue until suspended or 
terminated:
    (i) By mutual consent;
    (ii) by either party giving the other party sixty (60) days' written 
notice specifying the date of suspension or termination;
    (iii) by one (1) day's written notice by NMFS in the event the 
applicant fails to honor any invoice within ten (10) days after date of 
receipt of such invoice covering the full costs of the inspection 
service provided, or in the event the applicant fails to maintain its 
designated plants in a sanitary condition or to use wholesome raw 
materials for processing as required by NMFS, or in the event the 
applicant fails to comply with any provisions of the regulations 
contained in this part;
    (iv) by automatic termination in case of bankruptcy, closing out of 
business, or change in controlling ownership.
    (2) In case the contracting party wishes to terminate the fishery 
products inspection service under the terms of paragraph (d)(1)(i) or 
(ii) of this section, either the service must be continued until all 
unused containers, labels, and advertising material on hand or in 
possession of his supplier bearing official identification marks, or 
reference to fishery products inspection service have been used, or said 
containers, labels, and advertising material must be destroyed, or 
official identification marks, and all other reference to the fishery 
products inspection service on said containers, labels, advertising 
material must be obliterated, or assurance satisfactory to NMFS must be 
furnished that such containers, labels, and advertising material will 
not be used in violation of any of the provisions of the regulations in 
the part.
    (3) In case the fishery products inspection service is terminated 
for cause by NMFS under the terms of paragraph (d)(1)(iii) of this 
section, or in case of automatic termination under terms of paragraph 
(d)(1)(iv) of this section, the contracting party must destroy all 
unused containers, labels, and advertising material on hand bearing 
official identification marks, or reference to fishery products 
inspection service, or must obliterate official identification marks, 
and all reference to the fishery products inspection service on said 
containers, labels and advertising material.

After termination of the fishery products inspection service, NMFS may, 
at such time or times as it may determine to be necessary, during 
regular business hours, enter the establishment(s) or other facilities 
in order to ascertain that the containers, labels, and advertising 
material have been altered or disposed of in the manner provided herein, 
to the satisfaction of NMFS.

[36 FR 21039, Nov. 3, 1971]



Sec. 260.98  Premises.

    The premises about an official establishment shall be free from 
conditions which may result in the contamination of food including, but 
not limited to, the following:
    (a) Strong offensive odors;
    (b) Improperly stored equipment, litter, waste, refuse, and uncut 
weeds or grass within the immediate vicinity of the buildings or 
structures that may constitute an attractant, breeding place, or 
harborage for rodents, insects, and other pests;
    (c) Excessively dusty roads, yards, or parking lots that may 
constitute a

[[Page 114]]

source of contamination in areas where food is exposed;
    (d) Inadequately drained areas that may contribute contamination to 
food products through seepage or foot-borne filth and by providing a 
breeding place for insects or micro-organisms;

If the grounds of an official establishment are bordered by grounds not 
under the official establishment operator's control of the kind 
described in paragraphs (b) through (d) of this section, care must be 
exercised in the official establishment by inspection, extermination, or 
other means to effect exclusion of pests, dirt, and other filth that may 
be a source of food contamination.

[36 FR 21040, Nov. 3, 1971]



Sec. 260.99  Buildings and structures.

    The buildings and structures shall be properly constructed and 
maintained in a sanitary condition, including, but not limited to the 
following requirements:
    (a) Lighting. There shall be sufficient light (1) consistent with 
the use to which the particular portion of the building is devoted, and 
(2) to provide for efficient cleaning. Belts and tables on which 
picking, sorting, or trimming operations are carried on shall be 
provided with sufficient nonglaring light to insure adequacy of the 
respective operation. Light bulbs, fixtures, skylights, or other glass 
suspended over exposed food in any step of preparation shall be of the 
safety type or otherwise protected to prevent food contamination in case 
of breakage.
    (b) Ventilation. There shall be sufficient ventilation in each room 
and compartment thereof to prevent excessive condensation of moisture 
and to insure sanitary and suitable processing and operating conditions. 
If such ventilation does not prevent excessive condensation, the 
Director may require that suitable facilities be provided to prevent the 
condensate from coming in contact with equipment used in processing 
operations and with any ingredient used in the manufacture or production 
of a processed product.
    (c) Drains and gutters. All drains and gutters shall be properly 
installed with approved traps and vents. The drainage and plumbing 
system must permit the quick runoff of all water from official 
establishment buildings, and surface water around buildings and on the 
premises; and all such water shall be disposed of in such a manner as to 
prevent a nuisance or health hazard. Tanks or other equipment whose 
drains are connected to the waste system must have such screens and 
vacuum breaking devices affixed so as to prevent the entrance of waste 
water, material, and the entrance of vermin to the processing tanks or 
equipment.
    (d) Water supply. There shall be ample supply of both hot and cold 
water; and the water shall be of safe and sanitary quality with adequate 
facilities for its (1) distribution throughout buildings, and (2) 
protection against contamination and pollution.

Sea water of safe suitable and sanitary quality may be used in the 
processing of various fishery products when approved by NMFS prior to 
use.
    (e) Construction. Roofs shall be weathertight. The walls, ceilings, 
partitions, posts, doors, and other parts of all buildings and 
structures shall be of such materials, construction, and finish as to 
permit their efficient and thorough cleaning. The floors shall be 
constructed of tile, cement, or other equally impervious material, shall 
have good surface drainage, and shall be free from openings or rough 
surfaces which would interfere with maintaining the floors in a clean 
condition.
    (f) Processing rooms. Each room and each compartment in which any 
processed products are handled, processed, or stored (1) shall be so 
designed and constructed as to insure processing and operating 
conditions of a clean and orderly character; (2) shall be free from 
objectional odors and vapors; and (3) shall be maintained in a clean and 
sanitary condition.
    (g) Prevention of animals and insects in official establishment(s). 
Dogs, cats, birds, and other animals (including, but not being limited 
to rodents and insects) shall be excluded from the rooms from which 
processed products are being prepared, handled, or stored and from any 
rooms from which ingredients (including, but not being limited to salt, 
sugar, spices, flour, batter, breading, and fishery products) are 
handled and stored. Screens, or other

[[Page 115]]

devices, adequate to prevent the passage of insects shall, where 
practical, be provided for all outside doors and openings. The use of 
chemical compounds such as cleaning agents, insecticides, bactericides, 
or rodent poisons shall not be permitted except under such precautions 
and restrictions as will prevent any possibility of their contamination 
of the processed product. The use of such compounds shall be limited to 
those circumstances and conditions as approved by NMFS.
    (h) Inspector's office. Furnished suitable and adequate office 
space, including, but not being limited to, light, heat, and janitor 
service shall be provided rent free in official establishments for use 
for official purposes by the inspector and NMFS representatives. The 
room or rooms designated for this purpose shall meet with the approval 
of NMFS and shall be conveniently located, properly ventilated, and 
provided with lockers or cabinets suitable for the protection and 
storage of inspection equipment and supplies and with facilities 
suitable for inspectors to change clothing.
    (i) Adequate parking space, conveniently located, for private or 
official vehicles used in connection with providing inspection services 
shall be provided.

[36 FR 21040, Nov. 3, 1971]



Sec. 260.100  Facilities.

    Each official establishment shall be equipped with adequate sanitary 
facilities and accommodations, including, but not being limited to, the 
following:
    (a) Containers approved for use as containers for processed products 
shall not be used for any other purpose.
    (b) No product or material not intended for human food or which 
creates an objectionable condition shall be processed, handled, or 
stored in any room, compartment, or place where any fishery product is 
manufactured, processed, handled, or stored.
    (c) Suitable facilities for cleaning and sanitizing equipment (e.g., 
brooms, brushes, mops, clean cloths, hose, nozzles, soaps, detergent, 
sprayers) shall be provided at convenient locations throughout the 
plant.

[36 FR 21040, Nov. 3, 1971]



Sec. 260.101  Lavatory accommodations.

    Modern lavatory accommodations, and properly located facilities for 
cleaning and sanitizing utensils and hands, shall be provided.
    (a) Adequate lavatory and toilet accommodations, including, but not 
being limited to, running hot water (135 F. or more) and cold water, 
soap, and single service towels, shall be provided. Such accommodations 
shall be in or near toilet and locker rooms and also at such other 
places as may be essential to the cleanliness of all personnel handling 
products.
    (b) Sufficient containers with covers shall be provided for used 
towels and other wastes.
    (c) An adequate number of hand washing facilities serving areas 
where edible products are prepared shall be operated by other than hand-
operated controls, or shall be of a continuous flow type which provides 
an adequate flow of water for washing hands.
    (d) Durable signs shall be posted conspicuously in each toilet room 
and locker room directing employees to wash hands before returning to 
work.
    (e) Toilet facilities shall be provided according to the following 
formula:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                Toilet
                      Number of persons                          bowls
                                                               required
------------------------------------------------------------------------
1 to 15, inclusive..........................................           1
16 to 35, inclusive.........................................           2
36 to 55, inclusive.........................................       \1\ 3
56 to 80, inclusive.........................................       \1\ 4
For each additional 30 persons in excess of 80..............       \1\ 1
------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Urinals may be substituted for toilet bowls but only to the extent
  of one-third of the total number of bowls required.


All toilet equipment shall be kept operative, in good repair, and in a 
sanitary condition.

[36 FR 21041, Nov. 3, 1971]



Sec. 260.102  Equipment.

    All equipment used for receiving, washing, segregating, picking, 
processing, packaging, or storing any processed products or any 
ingredients used in the manufacture or production thereof, shall be of 
such design, material, and construction as will:
    (a) Enable the examination, segregation, preparation, packaging, and 
other processing operations applicable to

[[Page 116]]

processed products, in an efficient, clean, and sanitary manner, and
    (b) Permit easy access to all parts to insure thorough cleaning and 
effective bactericidal treatment. Insofar as is practicable, all such 
equipment shall be made of smooth impermeable corrosion-resistant 
material that will not adversely affect the processed product by 
chemical action or physical contact. Such equipment shall be kept in 
good repair and sanitary condition. Such equipment shall be cleaned and 
sanitized at a frequency as is necessary or required in accordance with 
Good Manufacturing Practice Regulations, 21 CFR part 128.

[36 FR 21041, Nov. 3, 1971]



Sec. 260.103  Operations and operating procedures shall be in accordance
with an effective sanitation program.

    (a) All operators in the receiving transporting, holdings, 
segregating, preparing, processing, packaging, and storing of processed 
products and ingredients, used as aforesaid, shall be strictly in accord 
with clean and sanitary methods and shall be conducted as rapidly as 
possible and at temperatures that will inhibit and retard the growth of 
bacterial and other micro-organisms and prevent any deterioration or 
contamination of such processed products or ingredients thereof. 
Mechanical adjustments or practices which may cause contamination of 
foods by oil, dust, paint, scale, fumes, grinding materials, decomposed 
food, filth, chemicals, or other foreign materials shall not be 
conducted during any manufacturing or processing operation.
    (b) All processed products, raw materials, ingredients, and 
components thereof shall be subject to inspection during each 
manufacturing or processing operation. To assure a safe, wholesome 
finished product, changes in processing methods and procedures as may be 
required by the Director shall be effectuated as soon as practicable. 
All processed products which are not manufactured or prepared in 
accordance with the requirements contained in Secs. 260.96 to 260.104 or 
are unwholesome or otherwise not fit for human food shall be removed and 
segregated prior to any further processing operation.
    (c) Official establishments operating under Federal inspection 
should have an effective quality control program as appropriate for the 
nature of the products and processing operations.
    (d) All ingredients used in the manufacture or processing of any 
processed product shall be wholesome and fit for human food.
    (e) The methods and procedures employed in the receiving, 
segregating, handling, transporting, and processing of ingredients in 
official estab lishment(s) shall be adequate to result in a satisfactory 
processed product. Such methods and procedures include, but are not 
limited to, the following requirements:
    (1) Containers, utensils, pans, and buckets used for the storage or 
transporting of partially processed food ingredients shall not be nested 
unless rewashed and sanitized before each use;
    (2) Containers which are used for holding partially processed food 
ingredients shall not be stacked in such manner as to permit 
contamination of the partially processed food ingredients;
    (3) Packages or containers for processed products shall be clean 
when being filled with such products; and all reasonable precautions 
shall be taken to avoid soiling or contaminating the surface of any 
package or container liner which is, or will be, in direct contact with 
such products.
    (f) Retention tags: (1) Any equipment such as, but not limited to, 
conveyors, tillers, sorters, choppers, and containers which fail to meet 
appropriate and adequate sanitation requirements will be identified by 
the inspector in an appropriate and conspicuous manner with the word 
``RETAINED.'' Following such identification, the equipment shall not be 
used until the discrepancy has been resolved, the equipment reinspected 
and approved by the inspector and the ``RETAINED'' identification 
removed by the inspector.
    (2) Lot(s) of processed products that may be considered to be 
mislabeled and/or unwholesome by reason of contaminants or which may 
otherwise be in such condition as to require further evaluation or 
testing to determine that

[[Page 117]]

the product properly labeled and/or wholesome will be identified by the 
inspector in an appropriate and conspicuous manner with the word 
``RETAINED.'' Such lot(s) of product shall be held for reinspection or 
testing. Final disposition of the lot(s) shall be determined by NMFS and 
the removal of the ``RETAINED'' identification shall be performed by the 
inspector.

[36 FR 21041, Nov. 3, 1971]



Sec. 260.104  Personnel.

    The establishment management shall be responsible for taking all 
precautions to assure the following:
    (a) Disease control. No person affected by disease in a communicable 
form, or while a carrier of such disease, or while affected with boils, 
sores, infected wounds, or other abnormal sources of microbiological 
contamination, shall work in a food plant in any capacity in which there 
is a reasonable possibility of food ingredients becoming contaminated by 
such person, or of disease being transmitted by such person to other 
individuals.
    (b) Cleanliness. All persons, while working in direct contact with 
food preparation, food ingredients, or surfaces coming into contact 
therewith shall:
    (1) Wear clean outer garments, maintain a high degree of personal 
cleanliness, and conform to hygenic practices while on duty, to the 
extent necessary to prevent contamination of food products.
    (2) Wash and sanitize their hands thoroughly to prevent 
contamination by undesirable microorganisms before starting work, after 
each absence from the work station, and at any other time when the hands 
may have become soiled or contaminated.
    (3) Remove all insecure jewelry and, when food is being manipulated 
by hand, remove from hands any jewelry that cannot be adequately 
sanitized.
    (4) If gloves are used in food handling, maintain them in an intact, 
clean, and sanitary condition. Such gloves shall be of an impermeable 
material except where their usage would be inappropriate or incompatible 
with the work involved.
    (5) Wear hair nets, caps, masks, or other effective hair restraints. 
Other persons that may incidentally enter the processing areas shall 
comply with this requirement.
    (6) Not store clothing or other personal belongings, eat food, drink 
beverages, chew gum, or use tobacco in any form in areas where food or 
food ingredients are exposed or in areas used for washing equipment or 
utensils.
    (7) Take any other necessary precautions to prevent contamination of 
foods with microorganisms or foreign substances including, but not 
limited to perspiration, hair, cosmetics, tobacco, chemicals, and 
medicants.
    (c) Education and training. Personnel responsible for identifying 
sanitation failures or food contamination should have a background of 
education or experience, or a combination thereof, to provide a level of 
competency necessary for production of clean wholesome food. Food 
handlers and supervisors should receive appropriate training in proper 
food-handling techniques and food-protection principles and should be 
cognizant of the danger of poor personal hygiene and unsanitary 
practices, and other vectors of contamination.

[36 FR 21041, Nov. 3, 1971]

                          Labeling Requirements



Secs. 260.200-260.201  [Reserved]



PART 261_UNITED STATES STANDARDS FOR GRADES--Table of Contents



Sec.
261.101  Standard description.
261.102  Publication and removal of U.S. Grade Standards.
261.103  Basis for determination of a U.S. Standard for Grades.

    Authority: 7 U.S.C. 1621-1630.

    Source: 61 FR 9369, Mar. 8, 1996, unless otherwise noted.



Sec. 261.101  Standard description.

    A U.S. Standard for Grades authorized under this part is a standard 
for a fish or fishery product that has been developed and adopted by the 
voluntary seafood inspection program pursuant to the Agricultural 
Marketing Act of 1946 (7 U.S.C. 1621 et seq.) and

[[Page 118]]

other authorities delegated to the U.S. Department of Commerce.



Sec. 261.102  Publication and removal of U.S. Grade Standards.

    (a) The voluntary U.S. Standards for Grades adopted pursuant to this 
part shall be issued as Program policies and contained within the NMFS 
Fishery Products Inspection Manual. Compliance with voluntary standards 
issued as Program policies within the manual shall satisfy the 
requirements of this part. Compliance with a voluntary standard issued 
as a Program policy does not relieve any party from the responsibility 
to comply with the provisions of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic 
Act; or other Federal laws and regulations.
    (b) Notification of an application for a new grade standard shall be 
published in the Federal Register. If adopted, the grade standard shall 
be issued as a Program policy and contained in the NMFS Fishery Products 
Inspection Manual.
    (c) Recision and revision of a U.S. Standard for Grades will be made 
a Program policy amendment and contained in the NMFS Fishery Products 
Inspection Manual.
    (d) The NMFS Fishery Products Inspection Manual is available to 
interested parties.



Sec. 261.103  Basis for determination of a U.S. Standard for Grades.

    (a) To address the inherently distinct and dissimilar attributes 
found in the fishery product groups, each standard for grades should 
have a different scope and product description, product forms, sample 
sizes, definition of defects, etc. The Secretary will make the final 
determination regarding the content of a U.S. Standard for Grades.
    (b) A proposal for a new or revised U.S. grade standard may include 
the following:
    (1) Scope and product description, which describes the products that 
are eligible for grading using the standard (e.g., fish portion, fish 
fillet).
    (2) Product forms, which describe the types, styles and market forms 
covered by the standard (e.g., skin-off, tail-on, headless).
    (3) Grade and inspection marks, which describe the grades and 
inspection mark criteria for each grade category (e.g., Grade A  15 
points).
    (4) Grade determination, which describes the means by which the 
grade is determined (i.e., the factors rated by score points and those 
that are not). Standards may contain defect grouping limiting rules that 
contain additional provisions that must be met.
    (5) Sampling, which describes the method of sampling and sample unit 
sizes (e.g., 10 portions, 8 ounces, etc.).
    (6) Procedures that describe the process used to determine the 
product grade (e.g., label declarations, sensory evaluation).
    (7) Definitions of defects, which outline the defects associated 
with the products covered by the standard, defines them, and describes 
the method of counting or measuring the defects. This section may 
provide associated defect points or reference a defect table (e.g., 
bruises, blood spots, bones, black spots, coating defects, 1-inch 
squares, percent by weight, ratios).
    (8) Defect point assessment, which describes how to assess points 
and provides any special guidance that may be necessary to the 
particular standard (e.g., defect points for certain categories are 
added together and divided by the weight of the sample unit; the number 
of instances are counted to determine if it is slight, moderate, or 
excessive defect).
    (9) Tolerances for lot certification, which provide the sections 
from Title 50 CFR that regulate lot certification.
    (10) Hygiene, which specifies the sections of applicable Federal 
regulations regulating the safe, wholesome production of food for human 
consumption.
    (11) Methods of analysis, which describe the methods of analysis 
that will be used in the evaluation of the products covered by the 
standard for grades (e.g., net weight, deglazing, debreading).
    (12) Defect table, which is the table of defects and associated 
points to be assessed for each defect.

[[Page 119]]



                 SUBCHAPTER H_FISH AND SEAFOOD PROMOTION





PART 270_SPECIES-SPECIFIC SEAFOOD MARKETING COUNCILS--Table of Contents



Sec.
270.1  Scope.
270.2  Definitions.
270.3  Submission of application.
270.4  Review of application.
270.5  Conduct of referendum.
270.6  Sector participants eligible to vote.
270.7  Results of referendum.
270.8  Nomination and appointment of Council members.
270.9  Terms, vacancies and removal of Council members.
270.10  Responsibilities of a Council.
270.11  Responsibilities of NMFS.
270.12  Notice of Council meetings.
270.13  Books, records and reports.
270.14  Update of sector participant data.
270.15  Quality standards.
270.16  Deposit of funds.
270.17  Authority to impose assessments.
270.18  Method of imposing assessments.
270.19  Notice of assessment.
270.20  Payment of assessments.
270.21  Petition of objection.
270.22  Refunds.
270.23  Dissolution of Councils.

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 4001-4017

    Source: 72 FR 18111, Apr. 11, 2007, unless otherwise noted.



Sec. 270.1  Scope.

    This part 270 describes matters pertaining to the establishment, 
representation, organization, practices, procedures, and termination of 
Seafood Marketing Councils.



Sec. 270.2  Definitions.

    The following terms and definitions are in addition to or amplify 
those contained in the Fish and Seafood Promotion Act of 1986:
    Act means the Fish and Seafood Promotion Act of 1986 (Public Law 99-
659) and any subsequent amendments.
    Consumer education means actions undertaken to inform consumers of 
matters related to the consumption of fish and fish products.
    Council means a Seafood Marketing Council for one or more species of 
fish and fish products of that species established under section 210 of 
the Act (16 U.S.C. 4009).
    Expenditure means monetary or material worth of fishery products. 
Expenditure is determined at the point a receiver obtains product from a 
harvester or an importer obtains product from a foreign supplier. Value 
may be expressed in monetary units (the price a receiver pays to a 
harvester or an importer pays to a foreign supplier).
    Fiscal year means any 12-month period as NMFS may determine for each 
Council.
    Fish means finfish, mollusks, crustaceans, and all other forms of 
aquatic animal life used for human consumption; the term does not 
include marine mammals and seabirds.
    Harvester means any person in the business of catching or growing 
fish for purposes of sale in domestic or foreign markets.
    Importer means any person in the business of importing fish or fish 
products from another country into the United States and its 
territories, as defined by the Act, for commercial purposes, or who acts 
as an agent, broker, or consignee for any person or nation that 
produces, processes or markets fish or fish products outside of the 
United States for sale or for other commercial purposes in the United 
States.
    Marketer means any person in the business of selling fish or fish 
products in the wholesale, export, retail, or restaurant trade, but 
whose primary business function is not the processing or packaging of 
fish or fish products in preparation for sale.
    Marketing and promotion means any activity aimed at encouraging the 
consumption of fish or fish products or expanding or maintaining 
commercial markets for fish or fish products.
    Member means any person serving on any Council.
    Participant means a member of a sector or business identified in an 
application for a Council charter as being subject to the referendum or 
assessment process.
    Person means any individual, group of individuals, association, 
proprietorship, partnership, corporation, cooperative, or any private 
entity of the U.S. fishing industry organized or existing

[[Page 120]]

under the laws of the United States or any state, commonwealth, 
territory or possession of the United States who meets the eligibility 
requirements as defined in a proposed charter to vote in a referendum.
    Processor means any person in the business of preparing or packaging 
fish or fish products (including fish of the processor's own harvesting) 
for sale in domestic or foreign markets.
    Receiver means any person who owns fish processing vessels and any 
person in the business of acquiring (taking title to) fish directly from 
harvesters.
    Research means any type of research designed to advance the image, 
desirability, usage, marketability, production, quality and safety of 
fish and fish products.
    Secretary means the Secretary of Commerce, or the Secretary's 
designee.
    Sector means
    (1) The sector consisting of harvesters;
    (2) The sector consisting of importers;
    (3) The sector consisting of marketers;
    (4) The sector consisting of processors;
    (5) The sector consisting of receivers; or
    (6) The consumer sector consisting of persons professionally engaged 
in the dissemination of information pertaining to the nutritional 
benefits and preparation of fish and fish products;
    Sector participant means any individual, group of individuals, 
association, proprietorship, partnership, corporation, cooperative, or 
any private entity of the U.S. fishing industry organized or existing 
under the laws of the United States or any state, commonwealth, 
territory or possession of the United States who meets the eligibility 
requirements as defined in a proposed charter to vote in a referendum.
    Species means a fundamental category of taxonomic classification, 
ranking after genus, and consisting of animals that possess common 
characteristic(s) distinguishing them from other similar groups.
    Value means monetary or material worth of fishery products. Value is 
the difference between what a receiver is willing to pay for a product 
provided by a harvester and its market price or an importer is willing 
to pay for a product from a foreign supplier and its market price. Value 
may be expressed in monetary units representing consumer surplus or 
producer surplus.



Sec. 270.3  Submission of application.

    (a) Persons who meet the minimum requirements for sector 
participants as described in the proposed charter may file an 
application with NMFS for a charter for a Seafood Marketing Council for 
one or more species of fish and fish products of that species. One 
signed original and two copies of the completed application package must 
be submitted to the Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, National 
Marine Fisheries Service, NOAA, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, 
MD 20910. Applications should not be bound.
    (b) The application consists of four parts:
    (1) A document requesting NMFS to establish a Council;
    (2) A proposed charter under which the proposed Council will 
operate;
    (3) A list of eligible referendum participants; and
    (4) Analytical documentation addressing requirements of applicable 
law.
    (c) Content of application--(1) Application or requesting document. 
The application or requesting document submitted by the applicants to 
NMFS requesting that the Council be established, to the extent 
practicable, must include the signatures or corporate certifications, of 
no less than three sector participants representing each sector 
identified in accordance with paragraph (c)(2)(v) of this section and 
who, according to the available data, collectively accounted for, in the 
12-month period immediately preceding the month in which the application 
was filed, not less than 10 percent of the value of the fish or fish 
products specified in the charter that were handled during such period 
in each sector by those who meet the eligibility requirements to vote in 
the referendum as defined by the application. The application must also 
include a statement that, if established, the Council will have 
sufficient resources (e.g., cash, donated office space, services, 
supplies,

[[Page 121]]

etc.) available for initial administrative expenditures pending 
collection of assessments.
    (2) Proposed charter. A proposed charter must contain, at a minimum, 
the following information:
    (i) The name of the Council and a provision proclaiming its 
establishment;
    (ii) A declaration of the purposes and objectives of the Council;
    (iii) A description of the species of fish and fish products, 
including the scientific and common name(s), for which the Council will 
implement marketing and promotion plans under the Act. (The American 
Fisheries Society's ``List of Common and Scientific Names of Fishes from 
the United States and Canada'' (latest edition) or where available, an 
appropriate volume of its ``List of Common and Scientific Names of 
Aquatic Invertebrates of the United States and Canada'' (latest edition) 
should be used as the authority for all scientific and common names.);
    (iv) A description of the geographic area (state(s)) within the 
United States covered by the Council;
    (v) The identification of each sector and the number and terms of 
representatives for each sector that will be voting members on the 
Council. (The number of Council members should be manageable, while 
ensuring equitable geographic representation. The term for members will 
be 3 years. Initially, to ensure continuity, half of the members' terms 
will be 2 years and half will be 3 years. Reappointments are 
permissible.);
    (vi) The identification of those sectors (which must include a 
sector consisting of harvesters, a sector consisting of receivers, and, 
if subject to assessment, a sector consisting of importers), eligible to 
vote in the referendum to establish the Council;
    (vii) For each sector described under paragraph (c)(2)(v) of this 
section, a threshold level specifying the minimum requirements, as 
measured by income, volume of sales, or other relevant factors, that a 
person engaging in business in the sector must meet in order to 
participate in a referendum;
    (viii) A description of the rationale and procedures for determining 
assessment rates as provided in Sec. 270.18, based on a fixed amount per 
unit of weight or measure, or on a percentage of value of the product 
handled;
    (ix) The proposed rate or rates that will be imposed by the Council 
on receivers and, if subject to assessment, importers during its first 
year of operation;
    (x) The maximum amount by which an assessment rate for any period 
may be raised above the rate applicable for the immediately preceding 
period;
    (xi) The maximum rate or rates that can be imposed by a Council on 
receivers or importers during the operation of the Council;
    (xii) The maximum limit on the amount any one sector participant may 
be required to pay under an assessment for any period;
    (xiii) The procedures for providing refunds to sector participants 
subject to assessment who request the same in accordance with the time 
limits specified Sec. 270.22;
    (xiv) A provision setting forth the voting procedures by which votes 
may be cast by proxy;
    (xv) A provision that the Council will have voting members 
representing the harvesting, receiving and, if subject to assessment, 
importing sectors;
    (xvi) A provision setting forth the definition of a quorum for 
making decisions on Council business and the procedures for selecting a 
chairperson of the Council;
    (xvii) A provision that members of the Council will serve without 
compensation, but will be reimbursed for reasonable expenses incurred in 
performing their duties as members of the Council;
    (xviii) A provision containing a requirement for submission to NMFS 
the criteria and supporting data for evaluating the annual and/or multi-
year performance of proposed marketing plans and the Council's 
performance;
    (xix) A provision containing a requirement for submission of 
documentation as requested by NMFS for purposes of evaluating 
performance of proposed marking plans and the Council's related 
performance;
    (xx) Where adequate funds are not available, a provision containing 
the

[[Page 122]]

minimum number of participants needed for sustained operations that 
cannot receive assessment refunds;
    (xxi) A provision acknowledging that NMFS will have the right to 
participate in Council meetings;
    (xxii) A provision that the Council will conduct its activities in 
accordance with applicable NMFS requirements and that NMFS has final 
approval authority over proposed marketing plans and Council actions;
    (xxiii) A provision containing a requirement for the Council to 
arrange for a complete audit report to be conducted by an independent 
public accountant and submitted to NMFS at the end of each fiscal year;
    (xxiv) A provision containing a requirement for the Council to 
conduct a market assessment based on economic, market, social and 
demographic, and biological information as deemed necessary by NMFS; and
    (xxv) A provision containing a requirement for the Council to update 
the list of referendum participants on an annual basis.
    (3) List of referendum participants. The list of referendum 
participants, to the extent practicable, must identify the business name 
and address of all sector participants that the applicants believe meet 
the requirements for eligibility to vote in the referendum on the 
adoption of the proposed charter.
    (i) The list should include all sectors in which a sector 
participant meets the eligibility requirements to vote in a referendum. 
If a sector participant has more than one place of business located 
within the geographic area of the Council, all such places should be 
listed and the primary place of business should be designated. The 
agency will provide appropriate information in its possession of a non-
proprietary nature to assist the applicants in developing the list of 
sector participants.
    (ii) [Reserved]
    (4) Analytical documentation. The applicant must address the 
requirements of the Act, implementing regulations, and other applicable 
law, i.e., E.O. 12866, Regulatory Flexibility Act, National 
Environmental Policy Act, and other law as NMFS determines appropriate.



Sec. 270.4  Review of application.

    Within 180 days of receipt of the application to establish a 
Council, NMFS will:
    (a) Determine if the application is complete and complies with all 
of the requirements set out in Sec. 270.3 and complies with all 
provisions of the Act and other applicable laws.
    (b) Identify, to the extent practicable, those sector participants 
who meet the requirements for eligibility to participate in the 
referendum to establish the Council. NMFS may require additional 
information from the applicants or proposed participants in order to 
verify eligibility. NMFS may add names to or delete names from the list 
of sector participants believed eligible by the applicants until the 
time of the referendum based on additional information received.
    (c) If NMFS finds minor deficiencies in an application that can be 
corrected within the 180-day review period, NMFS will advise the 
applicants in writing of what must be submitted by a specific date to 
correct the minor deficiencies.
    (d) If NMFS makes a final negative determination, on an application, 
NMFS will advise the applicant in writing of the reason for the 
determination. The applicant may submit another application at any time 
thereafter. NMFS then has 180 days from receipt of the new application 
to render a final determination on its acceptability.



Sec. 270.5  Conduct of referendum.

    (a) Upon making affirmative determinations under Sec. 270.4, NMFS, 
within 90 days after the date of the last affirmative determination, 
will conduct a referendum on the adoption of the proposed charter.
    (b) NMFS will estimate the cost of conducting the referendum, notify 
the applicants, and request that applicants post a bond or provide other 
applicable security, such as a cashierSec. s check, to cover costs of 
the referendum.
    (c) NMFS will initially pay all costs of a referendum to establish a 
Council. Within two years after establishment, the Council must 
reimburse NMFS for the total actual costs of the referendum from 
assessments collected by

[[Page 123]]

the Council. If a referendum fails to result in establishment of a 
Council, NMFS will immediately recover all expenses incurred for 
conducting the referendum from the bond or security posted by 
applicants. In either case, such expenses will not include salaries of 
government employees or other administrative overhead, but will be 
limited to those additional direct costs incurred in connection with 
conducting the referendum.
    (d) No less than 30 days prior to holding a referendum, NMFS will:
    (1) Publish in the Federal Register the text of the proposed charter 
and the most complete list available of sector participants eligible to 
vote in the referendum; and
    (2) Provide for public comment, including the opportunity for a 
public meeting.



Sec. 270.6  Sector participants eligible to vote.

    (a) Any participant who meets the minimum requirements as measured 
by income, volume of sales or other relevant factors specified in the 
approved charter may vote in a referendum.
    (b) Only one vote may be cast by each participant who is eligible to 
vote, regardless of the number of individuals that make up such 
``participant'' and how many sectors the participant is engaged in. The 
vote may be made by any responsible officer, owner, or employee 
representing a participant.



Sec. 270.7  Results of referendum.

    (a) Favorable vote to establish a Council. NMFS will, by order of 
publication in the Federal Register, establish the Council and approve 
an acceptable proposed charter, if the referendum votes which are cast 
in favor of the proposed charter constitute a majority of the sector 
participants voting in each and every sector. Further, according to the 
best available data, the majority must collectively account for, in the 
12-month period immediately preceding the month in which the proposed 
charter was filed, at least 66 percent of the value of the fish and fish 
products described in the proposed charter handled during such period in 
each sector by those who meet the eligibility requirements to vote in 
the referendum as defined by the applicants.
    (b) Unfavorable vote to establish a Council. If a referendum fails 
to pass in any sector of the proposed Council, NMFS will not establish 
the Council or approve the proposed charter. NMFS will immediately 
recover the cost of conducting the referendum according to 
Sec. 270.5(c).
    (c) Notification of referendum results. NMFS will notify the 
applicants of the results of the referendum and publish the results of 
the referendum in the Federal Register.



Sec. 270.8  Nomination and appointment of Council members.

    (a) Within 30 days after a Council is established, NMFS will solicit 
nominations for Council members from the sectors represented on the 
Council in accordance with the approved charter. If the harvesters and 
receivers represented on the Council are engaged in business in two or 
more states, but within the geographic area of the Council, the 
nominations made under this section must, to the extent practicable, 
result in equitable representation for those states. Nominees must be 
knowledgeable and experienced with regard to the activities of, or have 
been actively engaged in the business of, the sector that such person 
will represent on the Council. Therefore, a resume will be required for 
each nominee.
    (b) In accordance with 16 U.S.C. 4009(f), NMFS will, within 60 days 
after the end of the 30-day period, appoint the members of the Council 
from among the nominees.



Sec. 270.9  Terms, vacancies, and removal of Council members.

    (a) A Council term is for 3 years, except for initial appointments 
to a newly established Council where:
    (1) Half of the Council member terms will be 2 years; and
    (2) Half of the Council member terms will be 3 years.
    (b) A vacancy on a Council will be filled, within 60 days after the 
vacancy occurs, in the same manner in which the original appointment was 
made. A member appointed to fill a vacancy occurring before the 
expiration of the

[[Page 124]]

term for which the member's predecessor was appointed will be appointed 
only for the remainder of such term.
    (c) Any person appointed under the Act who consistently fails or 
refuses to perform his or her duties properly and/or participates in 
acts of dishonesty or willful misconduct with respect to 
responsibilities under the Act will be removed from the Council by NMFS 
if two-thirds of the members of the Council recommend action. All 
requests from a Council to NMFS for removal of a Council member must be 
in writing and accompanied by a statement of the reasons upon which the 
recommendation is based.



Sec. 270.10  Responsibilities of a Council.

    (a) Each Council will:
    (1) Implement all terms of its approved charter;
    (2) Prepare and submit to NMFS, for review and approval under 
Sec. 270.11(a)(1), a marketing and promotion plan and amendments to the 
plan which contain descriptions of the projected consumer education, 
research, and other marketing and promotion activities of the Council;
    (3) Implement and administer an approved marketing and promotion 
plan and amendments to the plan;
    (4) Determine the assessment to be made under Sec. 270.18 and 
administer the collection of such assessments to finance Council 
expenses described in paragraph (b) of this section;
    (5) Receive, investigate and report to NMFS accounts of violations 
of rules or orders relating to assessments collected under Sec. 270.20, 
or quality standard requirements established under Sec. 270.15;
    (6) Prepare and submit to NMFS, for review and approval a budget (on 
a fiscal year basis) of the anticipated expenses and disbursements of 
the Council, including
    (i) All administrative and contractual expenses;
    (ii) The probable costs of consumer education, research, and other 
marketing and promotion plans or projects;
    (iii) The costs of the collection of assessments; and
    (iv) The expense of repayment of the costs of each referendum 
conducted in regard to the Council.
    (7) Comply with NMFS requirements, and prepare and submit to NMFS 
for review, evaluation, and verification of results and analysis an 
annual market assessment and related analytical documentation that is 
based on economic, market, social, demographic, and biological 
information as deemed necessary by NMFS;
    (8) Maintain books and records, prepare and submit to NMFS reports 
in accordance with respect to the receipt and disbursement of funds 
entrusted to it, and submit to NMFS a completed audit report conducted 
by an independent auditor at the end of each fiscal year;
    (9) Reimburse NMFS for the expenses incurred for the conduct of the 
referendum to establish the Council or any subsequent referendum to 
terminate the Council that fails;
    (10) Prepare and submit to NMFS report or proposals as the Council 
determines appropriate to further the purposes of the Act.
    (b) Funds collected by a Council under Sec. 270.17 will be used by 
the Council for--
    (1) Research, consumer education, and other marketing and promotion 
activities regarding the quality and marketing of fish and fish 
projects;
    (2) Other expenses, as described in Sec. 270.10(a)(1);
    (3) Such other expenses for the administration, maintenance, and 
functioning of the Council as may be authorized by NMFS; and
    (4) Any reserve fund established under paragraph (e)(4) of this 
section and any administrative expenses incurred by NMFS specified as 
reimbursable under this part.
    (c) Marketing and promotion plans and amendments to such plans 
prepared by a Council under paragraph (a)(2) of this section will be 
designed to increase the general demand for fish and fish products 
described in accordance with Sec. 270.3(c)(2)(iii) by encouraging, 
expanding, and improving the marketing, promotion and utilization of 
such fish and fish products, in domestic or foreign markets, or both, 
through consumer education, research,

[[Page 125]]

and other marketing and promotion activities.
    (d) Consumer education and other marketing and promotion activities 
carried out by a Council under a marketing and promotion plan and 
amendments to a plan may not contain references to any private brand or 
trade name and will avoid the use of deceptive acts or practices in 
promoting fish or fish products or with respect to the quality, value, 
or use of any competing product or group of products.
    (e) Authority of a Council. A Council may:
    (1) Sue and be sued;
    (2) Enter into contracts;
    (3) Employ and determine the salary of an executive director who 
may, with the approval of the Council employ and determine the salary of 
such additional staff as may be necessary;
    (4) Establish a reserve fund from monies collected and received 
under Sec. 270.17 to permit an effective and sustained program of 
research, consumer education, and other marketing and promotion 
activities regarding the quality and marketing of fish and fish products 
in years when production and assessment income may be reduced, but the 
total reserve fund may not exceed the amount budgeted for the current 
fiscal year of operation.
    (f) Amendment of a charter. A Council may submit to NMFS amendments 
to the text of the Council's charter. Any proposed amendments to a 
charter will be approved or disapproved in the same manner as the 
original charter was approved under Sec. 270.4 and Sec. 270.5 with the 
exception of Sec. 270.4(b).



Sec. 270.11  Responsibilities of NMFS.

    (a) In addition to the duties prescribed under 16 U.S.C. 4009, NMFS 
will:
    (1) Participate in Council meetings and review, for consistency with 
the provisions of 50 CFR part 270 and other applicable law, and approve 
or disapprove, marketing and promotion plans and budgets within 60 days 
after their submission by a Council;
    (2) Immediately notify a Council in writing of the disapproval of a 
marketing and promotion plan or budget, together with reasons for such 
disapproval;
    (3) Issue orders and amendments to such orders that are necessary to 
implement quality standards under Sec. 270.15;
    (4) Promulgate regulations necessary to carry out the purposes of 
this chapter;
    (5) Enforce the provisions of the Act;
    (6) Make all appointments to Councils in accordance with Sec. 270.8 
and the approved Council charter;
    (7) Approve the criteria and time frames under which a Council's 
performance will be evaluated; and
    (8) Implement the provisions of 16 U.S.C. 4001 et seq. in accordance 
with the available financial and management resources NMFS determines 
can be utilized.
    (b) NMFS may provide, on a reimbursable or other basis, such 
administrative or technical assistance as a Council may request for 
purposes of the initial organization and subsequent operation of the 
Council. However, a Council is responsible for the cost of preparing and 
submitting information (e.g., reports, evaluation data, etc.) requested 
by NMFS.



Sec. 270.12  Notice of Council meetings.

    The Council will give NMFS the same notice of its meetings as it 
gives to its members. NMFS will have the right to participate in all 
Council meetings.



Sec. 270.13  Books, records and reports.

    (a) The Council must submit to NMFS the following documents 
according to the schedule approved in the Council's charter:
    (1) A marketing assessment and promotion plan;
    (2) A financial report with respect to the receipt and disbursement 
of funds;
    (3) An audit report conducted by an independent public accountant; 
and
    (4) Other reports or data NMFS determines necessary to evaluate the 
Council's performance and verify the results of the market assessment 
and promotion plan..
    (b) All Council records, reports, and data must be maintained by the 
Council for a minimum of 3 years, even if the Council is terminated.

[[Page 126]]



Sec. 270.14  Update of sector participant data.

    The Council will submit to NMFS at the end of each fiscal year an 
updated list of sector participants who meet the minimum requirements 
for eligibility to participate in a referendum as stated in the approved 
charter.



Sec. 270.15  Quality standards.

    (a) Each Council may develop and submit to NMFS for approval or, 
upon the request of a Council, NMFS will develop quality standards for 
the species of fish or fish products described in the approved charter. 
Any quality standard developed under this paragraph must be consistent 
with the purposes of the Act.
    (b) A quality standard developed under paragraph (a) of this section 
may be adopted by a Council by a majority of its members following a 
referendum conducted by the Council among sector participants of the 
concerned sector(s). In order for a quality standard to be brought 
before Council members for adoption, the majority of the sector 
participants of the concerned sector(s) must vote in favor of the 
standard. Further, according to the best available data, the majority 
must collectively account for, in the 12-month period immediately 
preceding the month in which the referendum is held, not less than 66 
percent of the value of the fish or fish products described in the 
charter that were handled during such period in that sector by those who 
meet the eligibility requirements to vote in the referendum as defined 
by the petitioners.
    (c) The Council must submit a plan to conduct the referendum on the 
quality standards to NMFS for approval at least 60 days in advance of 
such referendum date. The plan must consist of the following:
    (1) Date(s) for conducting the referendum;
    (2) Method (by mail or in person);
    (3) Copy of the proposed notification to sector participants 
informing them of the referendum;
    (4) List of sector participants eligible to vote;
    (5) Name of individuals responsible for conducting the referendum;
    (6) Copy of proposed ballot package to be used in the referendum; 
and
    (7) Date(s) and location of ballot counting.
    (d) An official observer appointed by NMFS will be allowed to be 
present at the ballot counting and any other phase of the referendum 
process, and may take whatever steps NMFS deems appropriate to verify 
the validity of the process and results of the referendum.
    (e) Quality standards developed under this section of the 
regulations must, at a minimum, meet Food and Drug Administration (FDA) 
minimum requirements for fish and fish products for human consumption.
    (f) Quality standards must be consistent with applicable standards 
of the U.S. Department of Commerce (National Oceanic and Atmospheric 
Administration) or other recognized Federal standards and/or 
specifications for fish and fish products.
    (g) No quality standard adopted by a Council may be used in the 
advertising or promotion of fish or fish products as being inspected by 
the United States Government unless the standard requires sector 
participants to be in the U.S. Department of Commerce voluntary seafood 
inspection program.
    (h) The intent of quality standards must not be to discriminate 
against importers who are not members of the Council.
    (i) Quality standards must not be developed for the purpose of 
creating non-tariff barriers. Such standards must be compatible with 
U.S. obligations under the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, or 
under other international standards deemed acceptable by NMFS.
    (j) The procedures applicable to the adoption and the operation of 
quality standards developed under this subchapter also apply to 
subsequent amendments or the termination of such standards.
    (k) With respect to a quality standard adopted under this section, 
the Council must develop and file with NMFS an official identifier in 
the form of a symbol, stamp, label or seal that will be used to indicate 
that a fish or fish product meets the quality standard at the time the 
official identifier is

[[Page 127]]

affixed to the fish or fish product, or is affixed to or printed on the 
packaging material of the fish or fish product. The use of such 
identifier is governed by Sec. 270.15.



Sec. 270.16  Deposit of funds.

    All funds collected or received by a Council under this section must 
be deposited in an appropriate account in the name of the Council 
specified in its charter. Funds eligible to be collected or received by 
a Council must be limited to those authorized under the Act.
    (a) Pending disbursement, under an approved marketing plan and 
budget, funds collected through assessments authorized by the Act must 
be deposited in any interest-bearing account or certificate of deposit 
of a bank that is a member of the Federal Reserve System, or in 
obligations fully guaranteed as to principal and interest by the United 
States Government.
    (b) The Council may, however, pending disbursement of these funds, 
invest in risk-free, short-term, interest-bearing instruments.
    (1) Risk-free. All investments must be insured or fully 
collateralized with Federal Government securities. In the absence of 
collateral, accounts established at financial institutions should, in 
aggregate, total less than $100,000 to assure both principal and 
interest are federally insured in full.
    (2) Short-term. Generally, all investments should be for a 
relatively short time period (one year or less) to assure that the 
principal is maintained and readily convertible to cash.
    (3) Collateralization. Investments exceeding the $100,000 insurance 
coverage level must be fully collateralized by the financial 
institution.
    (i) Collateral must be pledged at face value and must be pledged 
prior to sending funds to the institution.
    (ii) Government securities are acceptable collateral. Declining 
balance, mortgage backed securities such as Government National Mortgage 
Association (GNMA) and Federal National Mortgage Association (FNMA) are 
not acceptable collateral.
    (iii) If an account has been established, collateral may be held at 
the local Federal Reserve Bank. Otherwise, another depository must hold 
the collateral.



Sec. 270.17  Authority to impose assessments.

    A Council will impose and administer the collection of the 
assessments that are necessary to pay for all expenses incurred by the 
Council in carrying out its functions under 50 CFR part 270.



Sec. 270.18  Method of imposing assessments.

    Assessments will be imposed on sector participants in the receiving 
sector or the importing sector or both as specified in an approved 
Council charter. Assessment rates will be based on value that may be 
expressed in monetary units or units of weight or volume.
    (a) An assessment on sector participants in the receiving sector 
will be in the form of a percentage of the value or a fixed amount per 
unit of weight or volume of the fish described in the charter when 
purchased by such receivers from fish harvesters.
    (b) An assessment on sector participants who own fish processing 
vessels and harvest the fish described in the charter will be in the 
form of a percentage of the value or on a fixed amount per unit of 
weight or volume of the fish described in the charter that is no less 
than the value if such fish had been purchased by a receiver other than 
the owner of the harvesting vessel.
    (c) An assessment on sector participants in the importing sector 
will be in the form of a percentage of the value that an importer pays 
to a foreign supplier, as determined for the purposes of the customs 
laws, or a fixed amount per unit of weight or volume, of the fish or 
fish products described in the charter when entered or withdrawn from 
warehouse for consumption, in the customs territory of the United States 
by such sector participants.
    (d) A Council may not impose an assessment on any person that was 
not eligible to vote in the referendum establishing the Council by 
reason of failure to meet the requirements specified under unless that 
person, after the date on which the referendum is held, meets the 
requirements of section.

[[Page 128]]

    (e) Any person may make voluntary payments or in-kind contributions 
to a Council for purposes of assisting the Council in carrying out its 
functions.



Sec. 270.19  Notice of assessment.

    (a) The Council must serve each person subject to assessment with 
notice that the assessment is due. The notice of assessment must 
contain:
    (1) A specific reference to the provisions of the Act, regulations, 
charter and referendum that authorize the assessment;
    (2) The amount of the assessment;
    (3) The period of time covered by the assessment;
    (4) The date the assessment is due and payable, which will not be 
earlier than 30 days from the date of the notice;
    (5) The form(s) of payment; and
    (6) To whom and where the payment must be made.
    (b) The notice must advise such person of his or her right to seek 
review of the assessment by filing a written petition of objection with 
NMFS at any time during the time period to which the assessment applies, 
including the right to request a hearing on the petition. The notice 
must state that the petition of objection must be filed in accordance 
with the procedures in Sec. 270.21.
    (c) The notice must also advise such persons of his or her right to 
a refund of the assessment as provided in Sec. 270.22. The notice must 
state that a refund may be requested for not less than 90 days from such 
collection, and provide that the Council will make the refund within 60 
days after the request for the refund is requested.



Sec. 270.20  Payment of assessments.

    Persons subject to an assessment would be required to pay the 
assessment on or before the date due, unless they have demanded a refund 
or filed a petition of objection with NMFS under Sec. 270.21. However, 
persons who have demanded a refund under Sec. 270.22 or filed a petition 
of objection under Sec. 270.21 may submit proof of these actions in leu 
of payment. In the case of a petition of objection, NMFs will inform the 
Council and the petitioner of its finding at which time petitioner must 
pay the revised assessment if applicable.



Sec. 270.21  Petition of objection.

    (a) Filing a petition. Any person issued a notice of assessment 
under Sec. 270.19 may request that NMFS modify or take other appropriate 
action regarding the assessment or promotion plan by filing a written 
petition of objection with NMFS. Petitions of objection may be filed:
    (1) Only if the petitioner determines one or more of the following 
criteria is not in accordance with the law:
    (i) The assessment;
    (ii) The plan upon which the assessment is based; or
    (iii) Any obligation imposed on the petitioner under the plan.
    (2) Only during the time period to which the assessment applies.
    (b) Contents of the petition of objection. A petition must be 
addressed to Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, National Marine 
Fisheries Service, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910, and 
must contain the following:
    (1) The petitioner's correct name, address, and principal place of 
business. If the petitioner is a corporation, this must be stated, 
together with the date and state of incorporation, and the names, 
addresses, and respective positions of its officers; if a partnership, 
the date and place of formation and the name and address of each 
partner;
    (2) The grounds upon which the petition of objection is based, 
including the specific terms or provisions of the assessment, the 
marketing and promotion plan, or obligation imposed by the plan, to 
which the petitioner objects;
    (3) A full statement of the facts upon which the petition is based, 
set forth clearly and concisely, accompanied by any supporting 
documentation;
    (4) The specific relief requested; and
    (5) A statement as to whether or not the petitioner requests a 
hearing.
    (c) Notice to Council. NMFS will promptly furnish the appropriate 
Council with a copy of the petition of objection.

[[Page 129]]

    (d) Opportunity for informal hearing. (1) Any person filing a 
petition of objection may request an informal hearing on the petition. 
The hearing request must be submitted with the petition of objection.
    (2) If a request for hearing is timely filed, or if NMFS determines 
that a hearing is advisable, NMFS will so notify the petitioner and the 
Council. NMFS will establish the applicable procedures, and designate 
who will be responsible for conducting a hearing. The petitioner, the 
Council, and any other interested party, may appear at the hearing in 
person or through a representative, and may submit any relevant 
materials, data, comments, arguments, or exhibits. NMFS may consolidate 
two or more hearing requests into a single proceeding.
    (3) Final decision. Following the hearing, or if no hearing is held, 
as soon as practicable, NMFS will decide the matter and serve written 
notice of the decision on the petitioner and the Council. NMFS's 
decision will be based on a consideration of all relevant documentation 
and other evidence submitted, and will constitute the final 
administrative decision and order of the agency. NMFS will have the 
discretion to waive collection of a contested assessment or revise, 
modify, or alter the assessment amount based on a Council method of 
assessment.



Sec. 270.22  Refunds.

    (a) Notwithstanding any other provision of the Act, any person who 
pays an assessment under the Act may demand and must promptly receive 
from the Council a refund of such assessment. A demand for refund must 
be made in accordance with procedures in the approved charter and within 
such time as will be prescribed by the Council and approved by NMFS. 
Procedures to provide such a refund must be established before any such 
assessment may be collected. Such procedures must allow any person to 
request a refund 90 days or more from such collection, and provide that 
such refund must be made within 60 days after demand for such refund is 
made.
    (b) Once a refund has been requested by a sector participant and 
paid by the Council, that sector participant may no longer participate 
in a referendum or other business of the Council during the remainder of 
the assessment rate period. Future assessments will only be sent to such 
a sector participant at the request of the sector participant. If 
assessments are paid during a future assessment rate period and no 
refund is requested, that sector participant may again participate in a 
referendum or other business of the Council.



Sec. 270.23  Dissolution of Councils.

    (a) Petition for termination. (1) A petition to terminate a Council 
may be filed with NMFS by no less than three sector participants in any 
one sector. Any petition filed under this subsection must be accompanied 
by a written document explaining the reasons for such petition.
    (2) If NMFS determines that a petition filed under paragraph (a)(1) 
of this section is accompanied by the signatures, or corporate 
certifications, of no less than three sector participants in the sector 
referred to in paragraph (a)(1) of this section who collectively 
accounted for, in the 12-month period immediately preceding the month in 
which the petition was filed, not less than 20 percent of the value of 
the fish or fish products described in Sec. 270.3(c)(2)(iii) that were 
handled by that sector during the period, NMFS within 90 days after the 
determination, will conduct a referendum for termination of the Council 
among all sector participants in that sector.
    (3) Not less than 30 days prior to holding a referendum, NMFS will 
publish an announcement in the Federal Register of the referendum, 
including an explanation of the reasons for the petition for termination 
filed under paragraph (a)(1) of this section and any other relevant 
information NMFS considers appropriate.
    (4) If the referendum votes which are cast in favor of terminating 
the Council constitute a majority of the sector participants voting and 
the majority, in the period in paragraph (a)(2) of this section, 
collectively accounted for not less than 66 percent of the value of such 
fish and fish products that were handled during such period by the 
sector in paragraph (a)(1) of this section,

[[Page 130]]

NMFS will by order of publication terminate the Council effective as of 
a date by which the affairs of the Council may be concluded on an 
orderly basis.
    (5) NMFS initially will pay all costs of a referendum conducted in 
Sec. 270.23. Prior to conducting such a referendum, NMFS will require 
petitioners to post a bond or other security acceptable to NMFS in an 
amount which NMFS determines to be sufficient to pay any expenses 
incurred for the conduct of the referendum.
    (6) If a referendum conducted under Sec. 270.23 fails to result in 
the termination of the Council, NMFS will immediately recover the amount 
of the bond posted by the petitioners under Sec. 270.23(a)(5).
    (7) If a referendum conducted under this subsection results in the 
termination of the Council, NMFS will recover the expenses incurred for 
the conduct of the referendum from the account established by the 
Council. If the amount remaining in such account is insufficient for 
NMFS to recover all expenses incurred for the conduct of the referendum, 
NMFS will recover the balance of the expenses from the petitioners that 
posted a bond under paragraph (a)(5) of this section.
    (b) Payment of remaining funds. If a Council is terminated under 
section Sec. 270.23(a)(4), NMFS, after recovering all expenses incurred 
for the conduct of the referendum under paragraph (a) of this section, 
will take such action as is necessary and practicable to ensure that 
moneys remaining in the account established by the Council under 
Sec. 270.17 are paid on a prorated basis to the sector participants from 
whom those moneys were collected under Sec. 270.20.



                        SUBCHAPTER I	J [RESERVED]



[[Page 131]]



                     SUBCHAPTER K_CONTINENTAL SHELF





PART 296_FISHERMEN'S CONTINGENCY FUND--Table of Contents



Sec.
296.1  Purpose.
296.2  Definitions.
296.3  Fishermen's contingency fund.
296.4  Claims eligible for compensation.
296.5  Instructions for filing claims.
296.6  NMFS processing of claims.
296.7  Burden of proof and presumption of causation.
296.8  Amount of award.
296.9  Initial determination.
296.10  Agency review.
296.11  Final determination.
296.12  Payment of costs.
296.13  Payment of award for claim.
296.14  Subrogation.
296.15  Judicial review.

    Authority: Pub. L. 97-212 (43 U.S.C. 1841 et seq.).

    Source: 47 FR 49600, Nov. 1, 1982, unless otherwise noted.



Sec. 296.1  Purpose.

    These regulations implement title IV of the Outer Continental Shelf 
Lands Act Amendments of 1978, as amended (title IV). Title IV 
establishes a Fishermen's Contingency Fund to compensate commercial 
fishermen for damage or loss caused by obstructions associated with oil 
and gas activities on the Outer Continental Shelf.



Sec. 296.2  Definitions.

    Area affected by Outer Continental Shelf activities means the area 
within a 3-mile radius of any casualty site which:
    (1) Includes any portion of a leased block, pipeline, easement, 
right of way, or other OCS oil and gas exploration, development, or 
production activity; or
    (2) Is otherwise associated (as determined by the Chief, Financial 
Services Division) with OCS oil and gas activities, such as, for 
example, expired lease areas, relinquished rights-of-way or easements, 
and areas used extensively by surface vessels supporting OCS oil and gas 
activities (areas landward of the OCS are included when such areas meet 
this criterion).
    Chief, FSD means Chief, Financial Services Division, National Marine 
Fisheries Service, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910; 
telephone: (301) 713-2396.
    Citizen of the United States means any person who is a United States 
citizen, any State, or any corporation, partnership, or association 
organized under the laws of any state which meets the requirements for 
documenting vessels in the U.S. coastwise trade.
    Commercial fisherman means any citizen of the United States who 
owns, operates, or is employed on a commercial fishing vessel.
    Commercial fishing vessel means any marine craft which is documented 
under the laws of the United States or, if under five net tons, 
registered under the laws of any State, and used for commercial fishing 
or activities directly related to commercial fishing.
    Easement means a right of use or easement granted under 30 CFR 
250.18.
    Fish means all forms of marine animal and plant life other than 
marine mammals, birds, and highly migratory species.
    Fishing gear means any commercial fishing vessel, and any equipment 
of such vessel.
    Fund means the Fishermen's Contingency Fund established by title IV 
of the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act Amendments of 1978.
    Holder means the owner of record of each lease, prelease exploratory 
drilling permit, easement, or right-of-way or any agent or assignee of 
an owner.
    Lease means any authority under section 8 or section 6 of the OCS 
Lands Act to develop and produce or explore for oil or gas.
    Negligence or fault includes, but is not limited to, failure to:
    (1) Remain outside of any navigation safety zone established around 
oil and gas rigs and platforms by any responsible Federal agency;
    (2) Avoid obstructions recorded on nautical charts or in the Notice 
to Mariners or marked by a buoy or other surface marker (casualties 
occurring within a one-quarter mile radius of obstructions so recorded 
or marked are presumed to involve negligence or fault of the claimant);

[[Page 132]]

    (3) Abide by established rules of the road;
    (4) Use proper care; or
    (5) Use due care and diligence to mitigate the damage or loss.
    Outer Continental Shelf means all submerged lands lying seaward and 
outside of the area of lands beneath navigable waters as defined in 43 
U.S.C. section 1301, and of which the subsoil and seabed appertain to 
the United States and are subject to its jurisdiction and control. 
Generally, but not in all cases, this includes all submerged lands lying 
seaward of the territorial sea (3 miles from a State's coastline, or 9 
miles from the coast of Texas or Florida).
    Person means an individual, partnership, corporation, association, 
public or private organization, government, or other entity.
    Resulting Economic Loss means the gross income, as estimated by the 
Chief, FSD, that a claimant will lose because of not being able to fish, 
or having to reduce fishing effort, during the period before the damaged 
or lost fishing gear concerned is repaired or replaced and available for 
use. This period must be reasonable. This period begins on the date of 
the casualty and stops on the date the damage could reasonably have been 
remedied by repair or replacement.
    Right-of-way means any right-of-way granted under section 5(e) of 
the OCS Lands Act or under 43 CFR 3340.0-5.
    Secretary means the Secretary of Commerce or his designee.

[47 FR 49600, Nov. 1, 1982, as amended at 61 FR 6322, Feb. 20, 1996]



Sec. 296.3  Fishermen's contingency fund.

    (a) General. There is established in the Treasury of the United 
States the Fishermen's Contingency Fund. The Fund is available without 
fiscal year limitation as a revolving fund to carry out the purposes of 
title IV of the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act Amendments of 1978, as 
amended.
    (b) Payments into the fund. Each Holder of an exploration permit, 
lease, easement, or rights-of-way for the construction of a pipeline, or 
a prelease exploration drilling permit issued or maintained under the 
Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act, in effect on or after June 30, 1982, 
shall pay assessments to the Fund. All pipeline right-of-way and 
easements are to be included for assessment except those constructed and 
operated lines within the confines of a single lease or group of 
contiguous leases under unitized operation or single operator. Payments 
will not be required for geological or geophysical permits, other than 
prelease exploratory drilling permits issued under section 11 of the 
Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (43 U.S.C. 1340).
    (1) Assessments to maintain the fund. When the total amount in the 
Fund is less than the Chief, FSD, determines is needed to pay Fund 
claims and expenses, the Chief, FSD, will notify the Secretary of the 
Interior that additional assessments are needed.
    (2) Billing and collections. The Secretary of the Interior will 
calculate the amounts to be paid by each Holder and shall notify each 
Holder of the dollar amount and the time and place for all payments. 
Each assessment shall be paid to the Secretary of the Interior no later 
than 45 days after the Secretary of the Interior sends notice of the 
assessment.
    (3) Annual assessment limits. No Holder shall be required to pay in 
excess of $5,000 for any lease, permit, easement or right-of-way in any 
calendar year.
    (c) Moneys recovered through subrogation. Any moneys recovered by 
the Secretary through the subrogation of a claimant's rights shall be 
deposited into the Fund.
    (d) Investments of the fund. Excess sums in the Fund will be 
invested in obligations of, or guaranteed by, the United States. Revenue 
from such investments shall be deposited in the Fund.
    (e) Litigation. The Fund may sue and be sued in its own name.



Sec. 296.4  Claims eligible for compensation.

    (a) Claimants. Damage or loss eligible for Fund compensation must be 
suffered by a commercial fisherman.
    (b) Damage or loss of fishing gear. Damage or loss is eligible for 
Fund compensation if it was caused by materials, equipment, tools, 
containers, or other items associated with OCS oil and gas exploration, 
development, or production activities. Damage or loss

[[Page 133]]

may be eligible for compensation even though it did not occur in OCS 
waters if the item causing the damage or loss was associated with oil 
and gas exploration, development, or production activities in OCS 
waters.
    (c) Exceptions. Damage or loss is not eligible for Fund 
compensation:
    (1) If the damage or loss was caused by the negligence or fault of 
the claimant;
    (2) If the damage or loss occurred prior to September 18, 1978;
    (3) To the extent that damage or loss exceeds the replacement value 
of the fishing gear involved;
    (4) For any portion of the damage or loss which can be compensated 
by insurance;
    (5) If the claim is not filed within 90 calendar days of the date 
the claimant or the claimant's agent first became aware of the damage or 
loss (or such longer period as the Secretary may allow under unusual and 
extenuating circumstances); or
    (6) If the damage or loss was caused by an obstruction unrelated to 
OCS oil and gas exploration, development, or production activities.

[47 FR 49600, Nov. 1, 1982, as amended at 50 FR 13796, Apr. 8, 1985; 61 
FR 6322, Feb. 20, 1996]



Sec. 296.5  Instructions for filing claims.

    (a) Fifteen-day report required to gain presumption of causation--
(1) General. Damages or losses are presumed to be qualified for 
compensation if certain requirements are satisfied. One requirement is 
that a report must be made to NMFS within fifteen (15) days after the 
date on which the vessel first returns to a port after discovering the 
damage or loss. Filing of a fifteen-day report must be followed up by 
filing a detailed claim.
    (2) When and how to file a fifteen-day report. To qualify for the 
presumption of causation, a fifteen-day report must be made to NMFS 
within fifteen days after the date on which the vessel first returns to 
a port after discovering the damage or loss. Satisfaction of the 
fifteen-day requirement is determined by the postmark, if the report is 
mailed; by the date of a call, if the report is telephoned or 
radiotelephoned; or, by the date of appearance, if the report is made in 
person. The fifteen-day report must be made to the Chief, Financial 
Services Division, National Marine Fisheries Service, 1315 East-West 
Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910; telephone: (301) 713-2396.
    (3) Contents of fifteen-day report. Each fifteen-day report must 
include the following information:
    (i) The claimant's name and address;
    (ii) The name of the commercial fishing vessel involved;
    (iii) The location of the obstruction which caused the damage or 
loss;
    (iv) A description of the nature of the damage or loss;
    (v) The date such damage or loss was discovered;
    (vi) If the fifteen-day report is made after the vessel returns to 
port, the date on which the vessel first returned to port after 
discovering the damage.
    (b) Form of claim. Claims must be in writing. Claims may be 
submitted on NOAA form 88-164. This form may be obtained from any NMFS 
regional office or from the Chief, FSD. Although claimants are not 
required to use this claim form, it will probably be to their benefit to 
do so.
    (c) Who must file and when and where to file claims. All claimants 
(including those who filed 15-day reports to gain the presumption of 
causation) must submit a claim application to the Chief, Financial 
Services Division, within 90 calendar days of the date the claimant or 
the claimant's agent first became aware of the damage or loss. The 
Chief, FSD, may allow a longer period for filing claims if, in his 
discretion, unusual and extenuating circumstances justify a longer 
period. The term ``filed'' means delivered in person, or mailed (as 
determined by the date of the postmark) to the Chief, Financial Services 
Division, National Marine Fisheries Service, 1825 Connecticut Avenue, 
NW., Washington, DC 20235. The Chief, FSD, suggests that mailed claims 
be sent by registered or certified mail, return receipt requested, so 
the claimant will have a record that the claim was received by the 
Chief, FSD.
    (d) Aggregating claims. If more than one commercial fisherman 
suffers loss or damage from the same incident (for example, when several 
members of the

[[Page 134]]

crew lost income due to loss of fishing time), all claims should be 
submitted on their behalf by the owner or operator of the commercial 
fishing vessel involved.
    (e) Contents of claim. Each claim must be signed by the claimant and 
must accurately and completely provide the following information:
    (1) The name, mailing address, telephone number, citizenship, and 
occupational status (for example, vessel owner, operator, or crew 
member) of each claimant;
    (2) The name and Coast Guard documentation number or State 
registration number of the commercial fishing vessel involved in the 
damage or loss;
    (3) The home port, type, and size of the vessel involved in the 
casualty;
    (4) A full statement of the circumstances of the damage or loss 
including:
    (i) The date when the casualty was first discovered by the claimant,
    (ii) The water depth (if known) and visibility at the time and 
location where the casualty occurred,
    (iii) The direction, speed, and activities of the claimant's vessel 
immediately before, during, and after the casualty (including a full 
description of both the deployment of any fishing gear which is the 
subject of the claim and all attempts at retrieval of the gear),
    (iv) The names and addresses of all witnesses to the casualty,
    (v) The location where the casualty occurred in Loran C coordinates 
or the next most accurate method of position fixing available to the 
claimant,
    (vi) A description of the item or obstruction (if sighted or 
recovered) which caused the casualty, and whether or not any surface 
markers were attached to or near the obstruction. Submit any available 
photographs of the item or obstruction. State reasons for believing the 
obstruction is associated with OCS oil and gas activities.
    (5) The amount claimed for property damage or loss and a full 
statement of the type and extent of damage or loss including:
    (i) An inventory of all components of fishing gear damaged or lost,
    (ii) The date, place, and cost of acquisition of all fishing gear 
damaged or lost and proof of its purchase (sales receipts, affidavits, 
or other evidence),
    (iii) One estimate from a commercial fishing gear repair or supply 
company of the present replacement or repair (whichever applies) cost of 
the damaged or lost fishing gear. If the gear will be repaired by the 
claimant himself, a detailed estimate by the claimant identifying the 
repair cost.
    (6) The amount claimed for economic loss and the basis for that 
amount with supporting documentation, as follows:
    (i) Trip tickets for the three vessel trips immediately before the 
trip during which the casualty was discovered and for the vessel trip 
immediately following the trip during which the casualty occurred.
    (ii) A statement of the amount of time involved on each of the 
vessel trips above (or if the casualty involves fixed gear, a statement 
of the number of gear units deployed on each of these trips).
    (iii) A statement of the amount of time lost from fishing because of 
the damage or loss and a full explanation of why this time period is 
reasonable.
    (iv) Documentation of the date replacement gear was ordered and 
received or the date gear repair began and ended. This documentation may 
consist of purchase orders, bills of lading, or statements from sellers 
or repairers.
    (7) The amount claimed for other consequential loss or costs 
(including fees for claim preparation, etc.) with suitable documentation 
of the amounts claimed (such as invoices, receipts, etc.).

[47 FR 49600, Nov. 1, 1982, as amended at 50 FR 13796, Apr. 8, 1985; 53 
FR 24645, June 29, 1988; 61 FR 6322, Feb. 20, 1996]



Sec. 296.6  NMFS processing of claims.

    (a) Action by NMFS. Upon receipt of a claim, the Chief, FSD, will:
    (1) Send an abstract of the claim to the Secretary of the Interior;
    (2) Send the reported location of any obstruction which was not 
recovered and retained to the National Ocean Survey, which will inform 
the Defense Mapping Agency Hydrographic/Topographic Center.
    (b) Actions by the Interior Department. Upon receipt of an abstract 
of a claim,

[[Page 135]]

the Interior Department will immediately:
    (1) Plot the casualty site, and advise NMFS whether the site is in 
an area affected by OCS activities;
    (2) make reasonable efforts to notify all persons known to have 
engaged in activities associated with OCS energy activity in the 
vicinity where the damage or loss occurred.
    (c) Responses to notice of claim. (1) Each person notified by the 
Interior Department will, within thirty days after receipt of the 
notice, advise the Chief, FSD, and the Interior Department whether he 
admits or denies responsibility for the damages claimed.
    (2) Each person notified by the Interior Department who fails to 
give timely and proper advice of admission or denial of responsibility 
shall be presumed to deny responsibility for the damages claimed.
    (3) If any person admits responsibility, the Chief, FSD, will 
initiate action to recover from that party any sums paid or to be paid 
for the claimed damages.
    (4) Any person referred to in this section, including lessees or 
permittees or their contractors or subcontractors, may submit evidence 
about any claim to the Chief, FSD.
    (d) Failure to meet filing requirements. The Chief, FSD, may reject 
any claim that does not meet the filing requirements. The Chief, FSD, 
will give a claimant whose claim is rejected written notice of the 
reasons for rejection within 30 days after the date on which the claim 
was filed. If the claimant does not refile an acceptable claim within 30 
days after the date of this written notice, the claimant is not eligible 
for Fund compensation unless there are extenuating circumstances.
    (e) Proceedings--(1) Location. Any required proceeding will be 
conducted within such United States judicial district as may be mutually 
agreeable to the claimant and the Assistant Administrator, NMFS, or his 
designee, or if no agreement can be reached, within the United States 
judicial district in which the claimant's home port is located.
    (2) Powers. For purposes of any proceeding, the Assistant 
Administrator, NMFS, or his designee, shall have the power to administer 
oaths and subpoena witnesses and the production of books, records, and 
other evidence relative to the issues involved.
    (3) Amendments to claims. A claimant may amend the claim at any time 
before the Chief, FSD, issues an initial determination.
    (4) Criminal penalty for fraudulent claims. Any person who files a 
fraudulent claim is subject to prosecution under 18 U.S.C. sections 287 
and 1001, each of which, upon conviction, imposes a penalty of not more 
than a $10,000 fine and 5 years' imprisonment, or both.

[47 FR 49600, Nov. 1, 1982, as amended at 61 FR 6322, Feb. 20, 1996]



Sec. 296.7  Burden of proof and presumption of causation.

    (a) Burden of proof. The claimant has the burden to establish, by a 
preponderance of the evidence, all facts necessary to qualify his claim, 
including:
    (1) The identity or nature of the item which caused the damage or 
loss; and
    (2) That the item is associated with oil and gas exploration, 
development, or production activities on the Outer Continental Shelf.
    (b) Presumption of causation. Notwithstanding the above, damages or 
losses are presumed to be caused by items associated with oil and gas 
exploration, development, or production activities on the OCS if the 
claimant establishes that:
    (1) The claimant's commercial fishing vessel was being used for 
commercial fishing and was located in an area affected by OCS oil and 
gas exploration, development, or production activities;
    (2) A report on the location of the obstruction which caused such 
damage or loss, and the nature of such damage or loss, was made within 
fifteen days after the date on which the vessel first returned to a port 
after discovering such damage;
    (3) There was no record on the most recent nautical charts issued by 
the National Ocean Survey, NOAA, or in any weekly Notice to Mariners 
issued by the Defense Mapping Agency Hydrographic/Topographic Center, in 
effect at least 15 days before the date the

[[Page 136]]

damage or loss occurred, then an obstruction existed in the immediate 
vicinity where the damage or loss occurred. In the case of damages 
caused by a pipeline, the presumption will be available regardless of 
whether the pipeline was recorded on charts or in the Notice to 
Mariners; and
    (4) There was no proper surface marker or lighted buoy attached, or 
closely anchored, to such obstruction.
    (c) Geographic exclusion from presumption of causation. Damage or 
loss occurring within a one-quarter mile radius of obstructions recorded 
on charts or in a Notice to Mariners, or properly marked, is presumed to 
involve the recorded or marked obstruction.



Sec. 296.8  Amount of award.

    (a) Actual damages. The award for damaged fishing gear will be the 
lesser of the gear's repair cost or replacement cost. The award for lost 
fishing gear will be the gear's replacement cost.
    (b) Consequential damages. An award may also include compensation 
for any damage or loss (except personal injury) that is incurred as a 
consequence of the fishing gear damage or loss.
    (c) Resulting economic loss. An award may also include 50 percent of 
the resulting economic loss from damage to or loss of fishing vessels 
and gear.
    (d) Attorney, CPA, consultant fees. An award may also include 
compensation for reasonable fees paid by the claimant to an attorney, 
CPA, or other consultant for the preparation or prosecution of a claim.
    (e) Negligence of claimant. (1) An award will be reduced to the 
extent that the loss or damage was caused by the negligence or fault of 
the claimant. (For example, a claimant who sustained $10,000 in damages 
and whose negligence or fault was found to be responsible for 40% of the 
damage would receive $6,000 in compensation. If the same claimant were 
responsible for 99% of the negligence or fault that caused the damage, 
the claimant would receive $100 in compensation).
    (2) Negligence of the owner or operator of the fishing vessel or 
gear will reduce crewmember awards to the same extent that it reduces an 
award to the vessel's owner or operator.
    (f) Insurance proceeds. An award will be reduced by the amount the 
claimant has, or reasonably would have, received under a commercial 
policy of full hull and machinery and protection and indemnity 
insurance, whether or not such insurance was in effect at the time the 
casualty occurred.

[47 FR 49600, Nov. 1, 1982, as amended at 50 FR 13796, Apr. 8, 1985]



Sec. 296.9  Initial determination.

    The Chief, FSD will make an initial determination on a claim within 
60 days after the day on which the claim is accepted for filing. The 
initial determination will state:
    (a) If the claim is disapproved, the reason for disapproval, or
    (b) If the claim is approved, the amount of compensation and the 
basis on which the amount was determined.



Sec. 296.10  Agency review.

    (a) Within 30 days after the Chief, FDS, issues an initial 
determination, the claimant, or any other interested person who 
submitted evidence relating to the initial determination, may ask the 
Assistant Administrator, NMFS, or his designee, for a review of the 
initial determination.
    (b) The petitioner may submit written or oral evidence within 30 
days of filing the petition for review.



Sec. 296.11  Final determination.

    (a) If a petition for review of an initial determination is filed 
within 30 days after the date the Chief, FSD, issues an initial 
determination, the Assistant Administrator, NMFS, or his designee will 
conduct a review of the initial determination, and will issue a final 
determination no later than 60 days after receipt of the request for 
review of the initial determination.
    (b) If a petition for review of an initial determination is not 
filed within 30 days after the day on which the Chief, FSD, issues an 
initial determination, the initial determination will become a final 
determination.



Sec. 296.12  Payment of costs.

    (a) By person denying responsibility for damage. Any person who is 
notified by the Interior Department and fails to

[[Page 137]]

respond or denies responsibility for the damages claimed will pay the 
costs of the proceedings if such person is subsequently found to be 
responsible for the damage claimed.
    (b) By the claimant. Any claimant who files a claim will pay the 
cost of the proceedings if such person is subsequently found to be 
responsible for the damage claimed.
    (c) By person denying responsibility for damage and the claimant. If 
more than one party is found to have responsibility for the damage 
claimed, then the cost of the proceedings will be apportioned between 
them.



Sec. 296.13  Payment of award for claim.

    (a) Upon an initial determination, the Chief, Financial Services 
Division, shall immediately disburse the claim awarded if the claimant 
signed as part of his/her application a statement agreeing to repay all 
or any part of the award if the award should for any reason be 
subsequently reduced.
    (b) [Reserved]

[61 FR 6322, Feb. 20, 1996]



Sec. 296.14  Subrogation.

    (a) The claim application will contain a subrogation statement 
signed by the claimant as a condition of payment of the claim which:
    (1) Assigns to the Fund the claimant's rights against third parties; 
and
    (2) Provides that the claimant will assist the Fund in any 
reasonable way to pursue those rights.
    (b) Collection of subrogated rights. If a reasonable chance of 
successful collection exists, NMFS will refer any subrogated rights to 
the Justice Department for collection.
    (c) Any moneys recovered through subrogation shall be deposited into 
the Fund.

[47 FR 49600, Nov. 1, 1982, as amended at 61 FR 6323, Feb. 20, 1996]



Sec. 296.15  Judicial review.

    Any claimant or other person who is aggrieved by a final 
determination may, no later than 30 days after the determination, seek 
judicial review of the determination in the United States District Court 
for such judicial district as may be mutually agreeable to the parties 
concerned or, if no agreement can be reached, in the United States 
District Court for the judicial district in which the claimant's home 
port is located.

                        PARTS 297	299 [RESERVED]

[[Page 139]]



        CHAPTER III--INTERNATIONAL FISHING AND RELATED ACTIVITIES




  --------------------------------------------------------------------
Part                                                                Page
300             International fisheries regulations.........         141
301-399

[Reserved]

[[Page 141]]



PART 300_INTERNATIONAL FISHERIES REGULATIONS--Table of Contents



                            Subpart A_General

Sec.
300.1  Purpose and scope.
300.2  Definitions.
300.3  Relation to other laws.
300.4  General prohibitions.
300.5  Facilitation of enforcement.

Subpart B [Reserved]

                Subpart C_Eastern Pacific Tuna Fisheries

300.20  Purpose and scope.
300.21  Definitions.
300.22  Eastern Pacific fisheries recordkeeping and written reports.
300.23  Eastern Pacific fisheries - Persons and vessels exempted.
300.24  Prohibitions.
300.25  Fisheries management.
300.26  Vessel monitoring system (VMS).
300.27  Incidental catch and tuna retention requirements.

                 Subpart D_South Pacific Tuna Fisheries

300.30  Purpose and scope.
300.31  Definitions.
300.32  Vessel licenses.
300.33  Compliance with applicable national laws.
300.34  Reporting requirements.
300.35  Vessel and gear identification.
300.36  Closed area stowage requirements.
300.37  Radio monitoring.
300.38  Prohibitions.
300.39  Exceptions.
300.40  Civil penalties.
300.41  Investigation notification.
300.42  Findings leading to removal from fishing area.
300.43  Observers.
300.44  Other inspections.
300.45  Vessel Monitoring System.
300.46  Transshipping requirements.

                   Subpart E_Pacific Halibut Fisheries

300.60  Purpose and scope.
300.61  Definitions.
300.62  Annual management measures.
300.63  Catch sharing plan and domestic management measures in Area 2A.
300.64  Fishing by U.S. treaty Indian tribes.
300.65  Catch sharing plan and domestic management measures in waters in 
          and off Alaska.
300.66  Prohibitions.
300.67  Charter halibut limited access program.

Figure 1 to Subpart E of Part 300--Boundaries for Sitka Sound Local Area 
          Management Plan (LAMP)
Figure 2 to Subpart E of Part 300--Southern Southeast Alaska Rural and 
          Non-Rural Areas
Figure 3 to Subpart E of Part 300--Northern Southeast Alaska Rural and 
          Non-Rural Areas
Figure 4 to Subpart E of Part 300--Prince William Sound Rural and Non-
          Rural Areas
Figure 5 to Subpart E of Part 300--Anchorage, Matanuska-Susitna, and 
          Kenai Rural and Non-Rural Areas
Figure 6 to Subpart E of Part 300--Alaska Peninsula and Aleutian Islands 
          Rural and Non-Rural Areas
Figure 7 to Subpart E of Part 300--Western and Central Alaska Rural and 
          Non-Rural Areas
Table 1 to Subpart E of Part 300--Determination of Commission Regulatory 
          Area 2C Annual Commercial Allocation From the Annual Combined 
          Catch Limit for Halibut
Table 2 to Subpart E of Part 300--Determination of Commission Regulatory 
          Area 3A Annual Commercial Allocation From the Annual Combined 
          Catch Limit for Halibut
Table 3 to Subpart E of Part 300--Determination of Commission Regulatory 
          Area 2C Annual Charter Halibut Allocation From the Annual 
          Combined Catch Limit
Table 4 to Subpart E of Part 300--Determination of Commission Regulatory 
          Area 3A Annual Charter Halibut Allocation From the Annual 
          Combined Catch Limit

        Subpart F_Fraser River Sockeye and Pink Salmon Fisheries

300.90  Purpose and scope.
300.91  Definitions.
300.92  Relation to other laws.
300.93  Reporting requirements.
300.94  Prohibitions and restrictions.
300.95  Treaty Indian fisheries.
300.96  Penalties.
300.97  Inseason orders.

               Subpart G_Antarctic Marine Living Resources

300.100  Purpose and scope.
300.101  Definitions.
300.102  Relationship to other treaties, conventions, laws, and 
          regulations.
300.103  Scientific research.
300.104  International Fisheries Trade Permits and AMLR first receiver 
          permits.
300.105  Preapproval for importation of frozen Dissostichus species.
300.106  Catch Documentation Scheme (CDS): Documentation and other 
          requirements.
300.107  Vessel permits and requirements.

[[Page 142]]

300.108  Vessel and gear identification.
300.109  Initiating a new fishery.
300.110  Exploratory fisheries.
300.111  Scientific observers.
300.112  Vessel monitoring system.
300.113  CCAMLR Ecosystem Monitoring Program sites.
300.114  Prohibitions.
300.115  Facilitation of enforcement and inspection.
300.116  Penalties.

   Subpart H_Vessels of the United States Fishing in Colombian Treaty 
                                 Waters

300.120  Purpose.
300.121  Definitions.
300.122  Relation to other laws.
300.123  Certificates and permits.
300.124  Recordkeeping and reporting.
300.125  Vessel identification.
300.126  Prohibitions.
300.127  Facilitation of enforcement.
300.128  Penalties.
300.129  Fishing year.
300.130  Vessel and gear restrictions.
300.131  Conch harvest limitations.
300.132  Lobster harvest limitations.

          Subpart I_United States-Canada Fisheries Enforcement

300.140  Purpose and scope.
300.141  Definitions.
300.142  Prohibitions.
300.143  Facilitation of enforcement.
300.144  Penalties and sanctions.

          Subpart J_U.S. Nationals Fishing in Russian Fisheries

300.150  Purpose.
300.151  Definitions.
300.152  Procedures.
300.153  Permit issuance.
300.154  Recordkeeping and reporting.
300.155  Requirements.
300.156  Prohibited acts.
300.157  Penalties.

        Subpart K_Transportation and Labeling of Fish or Wildlife

300.160  Requirement for marking of containers or packages.
300.161  Alternatives and exceptions.

                Subpart L_Pacific Albacore Tuna Fisheries

300.170  Purpose and scope.
300.171  Definitions.
300.172  Vessel list.
300.173  Vessel identification.
300.174  Logbook reports.
300.175  Hail-in and hail-out reports.
300.176  Prohibitions.

 Subpart M_International Trade Documentation and Tracking Programs for 
                        Highly Migratory Species

300.180  Purpose and scope.
300.181  Definitions.
300.182  International fisheries trade permit.
300.183  Permit holder reporting and recordkeeping requirements.
300.184  Species subject to permitting, documentation, reporting, and 
          recordkeeping requirements.
300.185  Documentation, reporting and recordkeeping requirements for 
          consignment documents and re-export certificates.
300.186  Completed and approved documents.
300.187  Validation requirements.
300.188  Ports of entry.
300.189  Prohibitions.

          Subpart N_Identification and Certification of Nations

300.200  Purpose and scope.
300.201  Definitions.
300.202  Identification and certification of nations engaged in illegal, 
          unreported, or unregulated fishing activities.
300.203  Identification and certification of nations engaged in bycatch 
          of protected living marine resources.
300.204  Identification and certification of nations whose vessels are 
          engaged in shark catch.
300.205  Effect of certification.
300.206  Denial of port privileges and import restrictions on fish or 
          fish products.
300.207  Alternative procedures for nations identified as having vessels 
          engaged in IUU fishing activities that are not certified in 
          this subpart.
300.208  Alternative procedures for nations identified as having vessels 
          engaged in bycatch of PLMRs that are not certified in this 
          subpart.
300.209  Alternative procedures for nations identified as having vessels 
          engaged in shark catch that are not certified in this subpart.

  Subpart O_Western and Central Pacific Fisheries for Highly Migratory 
                                 Species

300.210  Purpose and scope.
300.211  Definitions.
300.212  Vessel permit endorsements.
300.213  Vessel information.
300.214  Compliance with laws of other nations.
300.215  Observers.
300.216  Transshipping, bunkering and net sharing.
300.217  Vessel identification.

[[Page 143]]

300.218  Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.
300.219  Vessel monitoring system.
300.220  Confidentiality of information.
300.221  Facilitation of enforcement and inspection.
300.222  Prohibitions.
300.223  Purse seine fishing restrictions.
300.224  Longline fishing restrictions.
300.225  Eastern High Seas Special Management Area.
300.226  Oceanic whitetip shark and silky shark.
300.227  Framework for catch and fishing effort limits.

                  Subpart P_Vessels on IUU Vessel Lists

300.300  Purpose and scope.
300.301  Definitions.
300.302  Port entry by foreign, listed IUU vessels.
300.303  Port access by foreign, listed IUU vessels.
300.304  Prohibitions.

    Subpart Q_International Trade Documentation and Tracking Programs

300.320  Purpose and scope.
300.321  Definitions.
300.322  International Fisheries Trade Permit.
300.323  Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.
300.324  Seafood Traceability Program.
300.325  Prohibitions.

                      Subpart R_High Seas Fisheries

300.330  Purpose.
300.331  Definitions.
300.332  Issuing offices.
300.333  Vessel permits.
300.334  Fisheries authorized on the high seas.
300.335  Bottom fishing.
300.336  Vessel identification.
300.337  Requirements for Enhanced Mobile Transceiver Units (EMTUs).
300.338  Observers.
300.339  Transshipment on the high seas.
300.340  Prohibitions.
300.341  Reporting.

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 951 et seq., 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq., 16 U.S.C. 
5501 et seq., 16 U.S.C. 2431 et seq., 31 U.S.C. 9701 et seq.

    Source: 61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, unless otherwise noted.

    Editorial Note: Nomenclature changes to part 300 appear at 64 FR 
44431, Aug. 16, 1999, and at 76 FR 59305, Sept. 26, 2011.



                            Subpart A_General

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 2431 et seq., 31 U.S.C. 9701 et seq.



Sec. 300.1  Purpose and scope.

    The purpose of this part is to implement the fishery conservation 
and management measures provided for in the international treaties, 
conventions, or agreements specified in each subpart, as well as certain 
provisions of the Lacey Act Amendments of 1981. The regulations in this 
part apply, except where otherwise specified in this part, to all 
persons and all places subject to the jurisdiction of the United States 
under the acts implemented under each subpart.



Sec. 300.2  Definitions.

    In addition to the definitions in each act, agreement, convention, 
or treaty specified in subparts B through K of this part, the terms used 
in this part have the following meanings:
    Assistant Administrator means the Assistant Administrator for 
Fisheries, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department 
of Commerce, or a designee. Address: Room 14555, 1315 East-West Highway, 
Silver Spring, MD 20910.
    Authorized officer means:
    (1) Any commissioned, warrant, or petty officer of the U.S. Coast 
Guard; or any U.S. Coast Guard personnel accompanying and acting under 
the direction of a commissioned, warrant, or petty officer of the U.S. 
Coast Guard;
    (2) Any special agent or fisheries enforcement officer of NMFS; or
    (3) Any person designated by the head of any Federal or state agency 
that has entered into an agreement with the Secretary of Commerce or the 
Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard to enforce the provisions of any 
statute administered by the Secretary.
    CCAMLR inspector means a person designated by a member of the 
Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources as 
an inspector under Article XXIV of the Convention on the Conservation of 
Antarctic Marine Living Resources to verify compliance with measures in 
effect under the Convention.

[[Page 144]]

    Exclusive Economic Zone or EEZ means the zone established by 
Presidential Proclamation 5030, dated March 10, 1983, as defined in 16 
U.S.C. 1802(6).
    Fishing or to fish means:
    (1) The catching or taking of fish;
    (2) The attempted catching or taking of fish;
    (3) Any other activity that can reasonably be expected to result in 
the catching or taking of fish; or
    (4) Any operations at sea in support of, or in preparation for, any 
activity described in paragraphs (1) through (3) of this definition.
    Fishing vessel means any vessel, boat, ship, or other craft that is 
used for, equipped to be used for, or of a type normally used for 
fishing.
    IATTC means the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission, established 
pursuant to the Convention for the Establishment of an Inter-American 
Tropical Tuna Commission.
    Import means to land on, bring into, or introduce into, or attempt 
to land on, bring into, or introduce into, any place subject to the 
jurisdiction of the United States, whether or not such landing, 
bringing, or introduction, constitutes an importation within the meaning 
of the customs laws of the United States.
    IRCS means International Radio Call Sign.
    Magnuson-Stevens Act means the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation 
and Management Act, 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.
    National of the United States or U.S. national means any person 
subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, including, but not 
limited to, a citizen or resident of the United States, or a person 
employed on a vessel of the United States. In the case of a corporation, 
partnership or other non- natural person, this includes, but is not 
limited to, any entity that is the owner of a vessel of the United 
States.
    NMFS means the National Marine Fisheries Service, NOAA, Department 
of Commerce.
    NMFS Headquarters means NMFS, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, 
MD 20910. Attention: Office of International Affairs.
    Official number means the documentation number issued by the USCG or 
the certificate number issued by a state or the USCG for an undocumented 
vessel, or any equivalent number if the vessel is registered in a 
foreign nation.
    Operator means, with respect to any vessel, the master or other 
individual aboard and in charge of that vessel.
    Owner means, with respect to any vessel:
    (1) Any person who owns that vessel in whole or part (whether or not 
the vessel is leased or chartered);
    (2) Any charterer of the vessel, whether bareboat, time, or voyage;
    (3) Any person who acts in the capacity of a charterer, including 
but not limited to parties to a management agreement, operating 
agreement, or any similar agreement that bestows control over the 
destination, function, or operation of the vessel; or
    (4) Any agent designated as such by a person described in this 
definition.
    Person means any individual (whether or not a citizen or national of 
the United States), any corporation, partnership, association, or other 
entity (whether or not organized, or existing under the laws of any 
state), and any Federal, state, local, or foreign government or any 
entity of any such government.
    Regional Administrator means the Administrator of one of the six 
NMFS Regions, described in Table 1 of Sec. 600.502 of this title, or a 
designee.
    Science and Research Director means the Director of one of the six 
NMFS Fisheries Science Centers described in Table 1 of Sec. 600.502 of 
this title, or a designee, also known as the Science Director.
    Secretary means the Secretary of Commerce or a designee.
    USCG means the United States Coast Guard.
    Yellowfin tuna means any fish of the species Thunnus albacares 
(synonomy: Neothunnus macropterus).

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 76 FR 59305, Sept. 26, 2011]



Sec. 300.3  Relation to other laws.

    Other laws that may apply to fishing activities addressed herein are 
set forth in Sec. 600.705 of chapter VI of this title.

[[Page 145]]



Sec. 300.4  General prohibitions.

    It is unlawful for any person subject to the jurisdiction of the 
United States to:
    (a) Violate the conditions or restrictions of a permit issued under 
this part.
    (b) Fail to submit information, fail to submit information in a 
timely manner, or submit false or inaccurate information, with respect 
to any information required to be submitted, reported, communicated, or 
recorded pursuant to this part.
    (c) Make any false statement, oral or written, to an authorized 
officer concerning the catching, taking, harvesting, possession, 
landing, purchase, sale, or transfer of fish, or concerning any other 
matter subject to investigation by that officer under this part.
    (d) Conceal any material fact (including by omission), concerning 
any matter subject to investigation by an authorized officer under this 
part.
    (e) Refuse to allow an authorized officer to inspect any report or 
record required to be made or kept under this part.
    (f) Falsify, cover, or otherwise obscure, the name, home port, 
official number (if any), or any other similar marking or identification 
of any fishing vessel subject to this part such that the vessel cannot 
be readily identified from an enforcement vessel or aircraft.
    (g) Fail to comply immediately with any of the enforcement and 
boarding procedures specified in this part.
    (h) Refuse to allow an authorized officer to board a fishing vessel, 
or enter any other area of custody (i.e., any vessel, building, vehicle, 
live car, pound, pier, or dock facility where fish might be found) 
subject to such person's control, for the purpose of conducting any 
inspection, search, seizure, investigation, or arrest in connection with 
the enforcement of this part or any other applicable law.
    (i) Destroy, stave, or dispose of in any manner, any fish, gear, 
cargo, or other matter, upon any communication or signal from an 
authorized officer of the United States, or upon the approach of such an 
officer, enforcement vessel, or aircraft, before the officer has had the 
opportunity to inspect same, or in contravention of directions from such 
an officer.
    (j) Intentionally destroy evidence that could be used to determine 
if a violation of this part has occurred.
    (k) Assault, resist, oppose, impede, intimidate, threaten, obstruct, 
delay, prevent, or interfere, in any manner, with an authorized officer 
in the conduct of any boarding, inspection, search, seizure, 
investigation, or arrest in connection with enforcement of this part.
    (l) Resist a lawful arrest or detention for any act prohibited by 
this part.
    (m) Interfere with, delay, or prevent, by any means, the 
apprehension, arrest, or detection of another person, knowing that such 
person has committed any act prohibited by this part.
    (n) Interfere with, obstruct, delay, or prevent, by any means, an 
investigation, search, seizure, or disposition of seized property in 
connection with enforcement of this part.
    (o) Ship, transport, offer for sale, sell, purchase, import, export, 
or have custody, control, or possession of, any fish imported, exported 
or re-exported in violation of this part.
    (p) Import, export, or re-export any fish regulated under this part 
without a valid International Fisheries Trade Permit as required under 
Sec. 300.322 or applicable shipment documentation as required under 
Sec. 300.323.
    (q) Violate any provision of any statute implemented by this part.
    (r) Attempt to do any of the foregoing.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 81 FR 51133, Aug. 3, 2016]



Sec. 300.5  Facilitation of enforcement.

    (a) Compliance. The operator of, or any other person aboard, any 
fishing vessel subject to this part must immediately comply with 
instructions and signals issued by an authorized officer or CCAMLR 
inspector to stop the vessel, and with instructions to facilitate safe 
boarding and inspection of the vessel, its gear, equipment, fishing 
record (where applicable), and catch for purposes of enforcing this 
part.

[[Page 146]]

    (1) For the purposes of this section ``freeboard'' means the working 
distance between the top rail of the gunwale of a vessel and the water's 
surface. Where cut-outs are provided in the bulwarks for the purpose of 
boarding personnel, freeboard means the distance between the threshold 
of the bulwark cut-out and the water's surface.
    (2) For the purposes of this section, ``pilot ladder'' means a 
flexible ladder constructed and approved to meet the U.S. Coast Guard 
standards for pilot ladders at 46 CFR subpart 163.003 entitled Pilot 
Ladder.
    (b) Communications. (1) Upon being approached by a USCG vessel or 
aircraft, or other vessel or aircraft with an authorized officer or 
CCAMLR inspector aboard, the operator of a fishing vessel must be alert 
for communications conveying enforcement instructions.
    (2) VHF-FM radiotelephone is the preferred method of communicating 
between vessels. If the size of the vessel and the wind, sea, and 
visibility conditions allow, a loudhailer may be used instead of the 
radio. Hand signals, placards, high frequency radiotelephone, voice, 
flags, whistle or horn may be employed by an authorized officer or 
CCAMLR inspector, and message blocks may be dropped from an aircraft.
    (3) If other communications are not practicable, visual signals may 
be transmitted by flashing light directed at the vessel signaled. USCG 
units will normally use the flashing light signal ``L'' which, in the 
International Code of Signals, means ``you should stop your vessel 
instantly.''
    (4) Failure of a vessel's operator promptly to stop the vessel when 
directed to do so by an authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector, or by an 
enforcement vessel or aircraft, using loudhailer, radiotelephone, 
flashing light, flags, whistle, horn or other means constitutes prima 
facie evidence of the offense of refusal to allow an authorized officer 
or CCAMLR inspector to board.
    (5) A person aboard a vessel who does not understand a signal from 
an enforcement unit and who is unable to obtain clarification by 
loudhailer or radiotelephone must consider the signal to be a command to 
stop the vessel immediately.
    (c) Boarding. The operator of a vessel directed to stop must:
    (1) Monitor Channel 16, VHF-FM, if so equipped.
    (2) Stop immediately and lay to or, if appropriate and/or directed 
to do so by the authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector, maneuver in such 
a way as to allow the safe boarding of the vessel by the authorized 
officer or CCAMLR inspector and the boarding party.
    (3) Except for fishing vessels with a freeboard of 4 feet (1.25 m) 
or less, provide, when requested by an authorized officer or CCAMLR 
inspector, a pilot ladder capable of being used for the purpose of 
enabling the authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector to embark and 
disembark the vessel safely. The pilot ladder must be maintained in good 
condition and kept clean.
    (4) When necessary to facilitate the boarding or when requested by 
an authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector, provide a manrope or safety 
line, and illumination for the pilot ladder.
    (5) Take such other actions as necessary to facilitate boarding and 
to ensure the safety of the authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector and 
the boarding party.
    (d) Signals. The following signals, extracted from the International 
Code of Signals, may be sent by flashing light by an enforcement unit 
when conditions do not allow communications by loudhailer or 
radiotelephone. Knowledge of these signals by vessel operators is not 
required. However, knowledge of these signals and appropriate action by 
a vessel operator may preclude the necessity of sending the signal ``L'' 
and the necessity for the vessel to stop instantly.
    (1) ``AA'' repeated (.- .-) is the call to an unknown station. The 
operator of the signaled vessel should respond by identifying the vessel 
by radiotelephone or by illuminating the vessel's identification.
    (2) ``RY-CY'' (.-. -.-- -.-. -.--) means ``you should proceed at 
slow speed, a boat is coming to you.'' This signal is normally employed 
when conditions allow an enforcement boarding without the necessity of 
the vessel being boarded coming to a complete stop, or,

[[Page 147]]

in some cases, without retrieval of fishing gear that may be in the 
water.
    (3) ``SQ3'' (... --.- ...--) means ``you should stop or heave to; I 
am going to board you.''

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 73 FR 67809, Nov. 17, 2008]

Subpart B [Reserved]



                Subpart C_Eastern Pacific Tuna Fisheries

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 951 et seq.



Sec. 300.20  Purpose and scope.

    The regulations in this subpart are issued under the authority of 
the Tuna Conventions Act of 1950, as amended, (Act) and apply to persons 
and vessels subject to the jurisdiction of the United States. The 
regulations implement recommendations and other decisions of the Inter-
American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC) for the conservation and 
management of stocks of tunas and tuna-like species and other species of 
fish taken by vessels fishing for tunas and tuna-like species in the 
IATTC Convention Area. The Secretary of Commerce, in consultation with 
the Secretary of State and, with respect to enforcement measures, the 
U.S. Coast Guard, may promulgate such regulations as may be necessary to 
carry out the U.S. international obligations under the Convention for 
the Establishment of an Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission 
(Convention), the Convention for the Strengthening of the Inter-American 
Tropical Tuna Commission Established by the 1949 Convention between the 
United States of America and the Republic of Costa Rica (Antigua 
Convention), and the Act, including recommendations and other decisions 
adopted by the IATTC.

[82 FR 17385, Apr. 11, 2017]



Sec. 300.21  Definitions.

    In addition to the terms defined in Sec. 300.2, in the Act, the 
Convention for the Establishment of an Inter-American Tropical Tuna 
Commission (Convention), and the Convention for the Strengthening of the 
Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission Established by the 1949 
Convention between the United States of America and the Republic of 
Costa Rica (Antigua Convention), the terms used in this subpart have the 
following meanings. If a term is defined differently in Sec. 300.2, in 
the Act, or in the Antigua Convention, the definition in this section 
shall apply.
    Commercial with respect to commercial fishing, means fishing in 
which the fish harvested, either in whole or in part, are intended to 
enter commerce through sale, barter or trade.
    Commercial passenger fishing vessel means any vessel licensed for 
commercial passenger fishing purposes within the State out of which it 
is operating and from which, while under charter or hire, persons are 
legally permitted to conduct sportfishing activities.
    Convention Area or IATTC Convention Area means:
    (1) For the purpose of Sec. 300.22(b), all waters of the Pacific 
Ocean within the area bounded by the west coast of the Americas and by 
50 N. latitude from the coast of North America to its intersection with 
150 W. longitude, then 150 W. longitude to its intersection with 50 
S. latitude, and then 50 S. latitude to its intersection with the coast 
of South America; and
    (2) For the purpose of all other sections and paragraphs of this 
subpart, all waters of the Pacific Ocean within the area bounded by the 
west coast of the Americas and by 50 N. latitude from the coast of 
North America to its intersection with 150 W. longitude, then 150 W. 
longitude to its intersection with 4 S. latitude, then 4 S. to its 
intersection with 130 W. longitude, then 130 W. longitude to its 
intersection with 50 S. latitude, and then 50 S. latitude to its 
intersection with the coast of South America.
    Data buoy means, for the purpose of Sec. 300.25, a floating device, 
either drifting or anchored, which is deployed by one or more 
governmental or recognized scientific organizations or entities for the 
purpose of electronically collecting and measuring environmental data, 
and not for the purpose of fishing activities, and which has been 
reported to the IATTC by a Member or Cooperating non-Member of the 
Commission.

[[Page 148]]

    Dolphin set means a purse seine set where a class size 6 U.S. purse 
seine vessel (greater than 363 metric tons carrying capacity) deploys a 
net on, or encircles, dolphins to catch yellowfin tuna.
    Fish aggregating device (FAD) means a manmade raft or other floating 
object used to attract tuna and make them available to fishing vessels.
    Fishing trip means a period that a fishing vessel spends at sea 
between port visits and during which any fishing occurs.
    Fishing vessel means any vessel, boat, ship, or other craft that is 
used for, equipped to be used for, or of a type that is normally used 
for fishing or for assisting or supporting a vessel engaged in fishing, 
except purse seine skiffs.
    Floating object means any natural object or FAD around which fishing 
vessels may catch tuna.
    Floating object set means a purse seine set in which purse seine 
gear is deployed to encircle a floating object.
    Force majeure means, for the purpose of Sec. 300.25, a situation in 
which a vessel is disabled by mechanical and/or structural failure, fire 
or explosion.
    Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Branch means the Chief of the HMS 
Branch of the Sustainable Fisheries Division, National Marine Fisheries 
Service West Coast Region, Suite 4200, 501 W. Ocean Blvd., Long Beach, 
CA 90802.
    Incidental catch or incidental species means species caught while 
fishing with the primary purpose of catching a different species. An 
incidental catch is expressed as a percentage of the weight of the total 
fish on board.
    Land or Landing means to begin transfer of fish from a fishing 
vessel. Once transfer begins, all fish on board the vessel are counted 
as part of the landing.
    Longline gear means a type of fishing gear consisting of a main line 
that exceeds 1 nautical mile in length, is suspended horizontally in the 
water column anchored, floating, or attached to a vessel, and from which 
branch or dropper lines with hooks are attached.
    Mobulid ray means any animal in the family Mobulidae, which includes 
manta rays (Manta spp.) and devil rays (Mobula spp.).
    Observer means an individual placed aboard a fishing vessel under 
the IATTC observer program or any other international observer program 
in which the United States may participate.
    Overall length means registered length, or the horizontal distance 
between the outboard side of the foremost part of the stem and the 
outboard side of the aftermost part of the stern, excluding rudders, 
outboard motor brackets, and other similar fittings and attachments for 
a single-hull vessel; for a multi-hull vessel, it is the horizontal 
distance between the outboard side of the foremost part of the stem of 
the foremost hull and the outboard side of the aftermost part of the 
stern of the aftermost hull, excluding fittings or attachments (See 46 
CFR 69.203).
    Regional Administrator means the Regional Administrator for the West 
Coast Region, National Marine Fisheries Service, or a designee.
    Regional Vessel Register (hereafter referred to as Vessel Register) 
means the regional register of vessels authorized to fish for tuna and 
tuna-like species in the Convention Area, as established by the Inter-
American Tropical Tuna Commission in June 2000.
    South Pacific Tuna Treaty means the Treaty on Fisheries Between the 
Governments of Certain Pacific Island States and the Government of the 
United States of America (50 CFR part 300, subpart D).
    Sustainable Fisheries Division (SFD) means the Assistant Regional 
Administrator for the Sustainable Fisheries Division, West Coast Region, 
National Marine Fisheries Service, or a designee.
    Tender vessel means a vessel that does not engage in purse seine 
fishing but tends to FADs in support of tuna fishing operations.
    Transship means to unload fish from a vessel that caught fish to 
another vessel.
    Transshipment receiving vessel means any vessel, boat, ship, or 
other craft that is used to receive fish from a fishing vessel.
    Trip limit means the total allowable amount of a species by weight 
of fish that may be retained on board, transshipped, or landed from a 
single fishing

[[Page 149]]

trip by a vessel that harvests tuna or tuna-like species.
    Tropical tuna means any of the following species:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                Common name                        Scientific name
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Bigeye tuna...............................  Thunnus obesus.
Skipjack tuna.............................  Katsuwonus pelamis.
Yellowfin tuna............................  Thunnus albacares.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Tuna means any fish of the genus Thunnus and the species Euthynnus 
(Katsuwonus) pelamis.
    Vessel monitoring system (VMS) means an automated, remote system 
that provides information about a vessel's identity, location and 
activity, for the purposes of routine monitoring, control, surveillance 
and enforcement of area and time restrictions and other fishery 
management measures.
    VMS unit, sometimes known as a ``mobile transmitting unit,'' means a 
transceiver or communications device, including all hardware and 
software that is carried and operated on a vessel as part of a VMS.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 64 FR 29133, May 28, 1999; 64 
FR 44430, Aug. 16, 1999; 69 FR 67277, Nov. 17, 2004; 70 FR 19010, Apr. 
12, 2005; 74 FR 1618, Jan. 13, 2009; 74 FR 61050, Nov. 23, 2009; 76 FR 
287, Jan. 4, 2011; 76 FR 68337, Nov. 4, 2011; 79 FR 19489, Apr. 9, 2014; 
80 FR 38989, July 8, 2015; 80 FR 60538, Oct. 7, 2015; 81 FR 24504, Apr. 
26, 2016; 81 FR 50403, Aug. 1, 2016; 81 FR 86969, Dec. 2, 2016; 82 FR 
17385, Apr. 11, 2017]



Sec. 300.22  Eastern Pacific fisheries recordkeeping and written reports.

    (a) Logbooks. (1) The master or other person in charge of a 
commercial fishing vessel or commercial passenger fishing vessel (CPFV) 
authorized to fish for tuna and tuna-like species in the Convention 
Area, or a person authorized in writing to serve as the agent for either 
person, must keep an accurate log of operations conducted from the 
fishing vessel. For vessels greater than 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying 
capacity that are authorized to purse seine for tuna in the Convention 
Area, the log must include for each day the date, noon position (stated 
in latitude and longitude or in relation to known physical features), 
and the tonnage of fish on board, by species. The record and bridge log 
maintained and submitted at the request of the IATTC shall be sufficient 
to comply with this paragraph, provided the items of information 
specified by the IATTC are accurately entered in the log. For purse 
seine vessels of 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity or less and for 
non-purse seine vessels, maintaining and submitting any logbook required 
by existing state or federal regulation shall be sufficient to comply 
with this paragraph.
    (2) Whale shark encirclement reporting. The owner and operator of a 
purse seine fishing vessel of the United States that encircles a whale 
shark (Rhincodon typus) while commercially fishing in the Convention 
Area must ensure that the incident is recorded on the log that is 
required by this paragraph (a). The log must include the following 
information: The number of individual whale sharks with which the vessel 
interacted, details of how and why the encirclement happened, where it 
occurred, steps taken to ensure safe release, and an assessment of the 
life status of the whale shark upon release (including whether the 
animal was released alive, but subsequently died), as may be further 
specified by NMFS.
    (b) Vessel Register. The Vessel Register shall include, consistent 
with resolutions of the IATTC, all commercial fishing vessels and CPFVs 
authorized to fish for tuna and tuna-like species in the Convention 
Area. Except as provided under paragraph (b)(1) of this section, tuna 
purse seine vessels must be listed on the Vessel Register and 
categorized as active under paragraph (b)(4)(i) of this section in order 
to fish for tuna and tuna-like species in the Convention Area.
    (1) Exception. Once per year, a vessel that is permitted and 
authorized under an alternative international tuna purse seine fisheries 
management regime in the Pacific Ocean may exercise an option to fish 
with purse seine gear to target tuna in the Convention Area without 
being listed on the Vessel Register and without being categorized as 
active under paragraph (b)(4)(i) of this section, for a fishing trip 
that does not exceed 90 days in duration. No more than 32 of such trips 
are allowed each calendar year. After the commencement of the 32nd such 
trip, the Regional Administrator shall announce,

[[Page 150]]

in the Federal Register and by other appropriate means, that no more 
such trips are allowed for the remainder of the calendar year. Under 
Sec. 216.24(b)(6)(iii)(C) of this title, vessel assessment fees must be 
paid for vessels exercising this option.
    (2) Requirements for inclusion of purse seine vessels on the vessel 
register. The tuna purse seine portion of the Vessel Register shall 
include, consistent with resolutions of the IATTC, only vessels that 
fished in the Convention Area prior to June 28, 2002. Inclusion on the 
tuna purse seine portion of the Vessel Register is valid through 
December 31 of each year. New tuna purse seine vessels may be added to 
the Vessel Register at any time to replace those previously removed by 
the Regional Administrator, provided that the total capacity of the 
replacement vessel or vessels does not exceed that of the tuna purse 
seine vessel or vessels being replaced.
    (3) Vessel information. (i) Information on each commercial fishing 
vessel or CPFV authorized to use purse seine, longline, drift gillnet, 
harpoon, troll, rod and reel, or pole and line fishing gear to fish for 
tuna and tuna-like species in the Convention Area for sale shall be 
collected by the Regional Administrator to conform to IATTC resolutions 
governing the Vessel Register. This information initially includes, but 
is not limited to, the vessel name and registration number; the name and 
business address of the owner(s) and managing owner(s); a photograph of 
the vessel with the registration number legible; previous vessel name(s) 
and previous flag (if known and if any); port of registry; International 
Radio Call Sign; vessel length, beam, and moulded depth; gross tonnage, 
fish hold capacity in cubic meters, and carrying capacity in metric tons 
and cubic meters; engine horsepower; date and place where built; and 
type of fishing method or methods used. The required information shall 
be collected as part of existing information collections as described in 
this and other parts of the CFR.
    (ii) IMO numbers. For the purpose of this section, an ``IMO number'' 
is the unique six or seven digit number issued for a vessel under the 
ship identification number scheme adopted by the International Maritime 
Organization (IMO) and managed by the entity identified by the IMO 
(currently IHS Maritime) and is also known as a Lloyd's Register number.
    (iii) Requirement for IMO number. The owner of a fishing vessel of 
the United States used for commercial fishing for tuna and tuna-like 
species in the IATTC Convention Area shall ensure that an IMO number has 
been issued for the vessel if the vessel's Certificate of Documentation 
issued under 46 CFR part 67 indicates that the vessel's total internal 
volume is 100 gross register tons or greater. A vessel owner may request 
that an IMO number be issued for a vessel by following the instructions 
given by the administrator of the IMO ship identification number scheme; 
those instructions are currently available on the Web site of IHS 
Maritime.
    (iv) Request for exemption. In the event that a fishing vessel 
owner, after following the instructions given by the designated manager 
of the IMO ship identification number scheme, is unable to ensure that 
an IMO number is issued for the fishing vessel, the fishing vessel owner 
may request an exemption from the requirement from the West Coast 
Regional Administrator. The request must be sent by mail to NMFS West 
Coast Region, 501 W. Ocean Blvd., Suite 4200, Long Beach, CA 90802, and 
must include the vessel's name, the vessel's official number, a 
description of the steps taken to request an IMO number, and a 
description of any responses from the administrator of the IMO ship 
identification number scheme.
    (v) Exemption process. Upon receipt of a request for an exemption 
under paragraph (b)(3)(iv) of this section, the West Coast Regional 
Administrator will, to the extent he or she determines appropriate, 
assist the fishing vessel owner in requesting an IMO number. If the West 
Coast Regional Administrator determines that the fishing vessel owner 
has followed all appropriate procedures and yet is unable to obtain an 
IMO number for the fishing vessel, he or she will issue an exemption 
from the requirements of paragraph (b)(3)(iii) of this section for the 
vessel and its

[[Page 151]]

owner and notify the owner of the exemption. The West Coast Regional 
Administrator may limit the duration of the exemption. The West Coast 
Regional Administrator may rescind an exemption at any time. If an 
exemption is rescinded, the fishing vessel owner must comply with the 
requirements of paragraph (b)(3)(iii) of this section within 30 days of 
being notified of the rescission. If the ownership of a fishing vessel 
changes, an exemption issued to the former fishing vessel owner becomes 
void.
    (4) Purse seine vessel register status. For a purse seine vessel to 
be listed on the Vessel Register and to be categorized as either 
``active'' or ``inactive'' in the following calendar year, the vessel 
owner or managing owner must submit to the Regional Administrator the 
required permit applications, written notifications, and fees as 
described under Sec. 216.24(b) of this title and under paragraphs 
(b)(4)(i) and (b)(4)(iii) of this section.
    (i) Active status. As early as August 1 of each year, vessel owners 
or managing owners may request that a purse seine vessel qualified to be 
listed on the Vessel Register under paragraph (b)(2) of this section be 
categorized as active for the following calendar year. To request a 
purse seine vessel in excess of 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity be 
listed on the Vessel Register and be categorized as active, the vessel 
owner or managing owner must submit to the Regional Administrator the 
vessel permit application and payment of the permit application fee and 
vessel assessment fee. To request a purse seine vessel of 400 st (362.8 
mt) carrying capacity or less be listed on the Vessel Register and be 
categorized as active, the vessel owner or managing owner must submit to 
the Regional Administrator written notification including, but not 
limited to, a vessel photograph, the vessel information as described 
under paragraph (b)(3) of this section, and the owner or managing 
owner's signature and business telephone and fax numbers. If a purse 
seine vessel of 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity or less is required 
by the Agreement on the IDCP to carry an observer, the vessel owner or 
managing owner must also submit payment of the vessel assessment fee to 
the Regional Administrator. Vessel permit applications and written 
notifications must be submitted by fax to (562) 980-4047. The Regional 
Administrator must receive the vessel permit application or written 
notification and payment of the permit application fee and vessel 
assessment fee no later than September 15 for vessels for which a DML 
was requested for the following year and no later than November 30 for 
vessels for which a DML was not requested for the following year. 
Submission of the vessel permit application or written notification and 
payment of the vessel assessment fee and permit application fee will be 
interpreted by the Regional Administrator as a request for a vessel to 
be categorized as active. The following restrictions apply to active 
status:
    (A) The cumulative carrying capacity of all purse seine vessels 
categorized as active on the Vessel Register may not exceed 31,775 cubic 
meters in a given year;
    (B) A purse seine vessel may not be added to active status on the 
Vessel Register unless the captain of the vessel has obtained a valid 
operator permit under Sec. 216.24(b)(2) of this title;
    (C) Requests for active status will be prioritized according to the 
following hierarchy:
    (1) Requests received for vessels that were categorized as active in 
the previous year, unless the request for active status was determined 
to be frivolous by the Regional Administrator under paragraph (b)(4)(ii) 
of this section;
    (2) Requests received for vessels that were categorized as inactive 
under paragraph (b)(4)(iii) of this section in the previous year;
    (3) Requests for vessels not described in paragraphs (b)(4)(i)(C)(1) 
or (2) of this section will be prioritized on a first-come, first-served 
basis according to the date and time stamp printed by the incoming fax 
machine upon receipt, provided that the associated vessel assessment fee 
is paid by the applicable deadline described in Sec. 216.24(b)(6)(iii) 
of this title; and
    (4) Requests received from owners or managing owners of vessels that 
were determined by the Regional Administrator to have made a frivolous 
request

[[Page 152]]

for active status under paragraph (b)(4)(ii) of this section.
    (ii) Frivolous requests for active status. (A) Except as described 
under paragraph (b)(4)(ii)(B) of this section, requests for active 
status under paragraph (b)(4)(i) of this section will be considered 
frivolous if, for a vessel categorized as active in a given calendar 
year:
    (1) Less than 20 percent of the vessel's total landings, by weight, 
in that same year is comprised of tuna harvested by purse seine in the 
Convention Area; or
    (2) The vessel did not fish for tuna at all in the Convention Area 
in that same year.
    (B) Exceptions. Requests described under paragraph (b)(4)(ii)(A) of 
this section will not be considered frivolous requests if:
    (1) The vessel's catch pattern fell within the criteria described in 
pargraph (b)(4)(ii)(A) as a result of force majeure or other 
extraordinary circumstances as determined by the Regional Administrator; 
or
    (2) The vessel's carrying capacity is 400 st (362.8 mt) or less and 
landings of tuna caught by the vessel in the Convention Area comprise 50 
percent or less of the vessel's total landings, by weight, for a given 
calendar year.
    (iii) Inactive status. From August 1 through November 30 of each 
year, vessel owners or managing owners may request that purse seine 
vessels qualified to be listed on the Vessel Register under paragraph 
(b)(2) of this section be categorized as inactive for the following 
calendar year. To request a purse seine vessel in excess of 400 st 
(362.8 mt) carrying capacity be listed on the Vessel Register and 
categorized as inactive for the following calendar year, the vessel 
owner or managing owner must submit to the Regional Administrator 
payment of the associated vessel assessment fee. Payment of the vessel 
assessment fee consistent with inactive status will be interpreted by 
the Regional Administrator as a request for the vessel to be categorized 
as inactive. To request a purse seine vessel of 400 st (362.8 mt) 
carrying capacity or less be listed on the Vessel Register and 
categorized as inactive for the following calendar year, the vessel 
owner or managing owner must submit by mail to the Regional 
Administrator a written notification including, but not limited to, the 
vessel name and registration number and the vessel owner or managing 
owner's name, signature, business address, and business telephone and 
fax numbers. Payment of the vessel assessment fee is not required for 
vessels of 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity or less to be categorized 
as inactive. At any time during the year, a vessel owner or managing 
owner may request that a purse seine vessel qualified to be listed on 
the Vessel Register under paragraph (b)(2) of this section be 
categorized as inactive for the remainder of the calendar year. To 
request a purse seine vessel in excess of 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying 
capacity be listed on the Vessel Register and categorized as inactive 
for the remainder of the calendar year, the vessel owner or managing 
owner must submit to the Regional Administrator payment of the 
associated vessel assessment fee. To request a purse seine vessel of 400 
st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity or less be listed on the Vessel Register 
and categorized as inactive for the remainder of the calendar year, the 
vessel owner or managing owner must submit to the Regional Administrator 
written notification as described in this paragraph (payment of the 
vessel assessment fee is not required).
    (5) Removal from the vessel register. A vessel may be removed from 
the Vessel Register by the Regional Administrator:
    (i) If the vessel has sunk;
    (ii) Upon written request by the vessel's owner or managing owner;
    (iii) Following a final agency action on a permit sanction for a 
violation;
    (iv) For failure to pay a penalty or for default on a penalty 
payment agreement resulting from a final agency action for a violation;
    (v) If the U.S. Maritime Administration or the U.S. Coast Guard 
notifies NMFS that:
    (A) The owner has submitted an application for transfer of the 
vessel to foreign registry and flag; or
    (B) The documentation for the vessel will be or has been deleted for 
any reason.

[[Page 153]]

    (vi) If the vessel does not have a valid state registration or U.S. 
Coast Guard certificate of documentation;
    (vii) For tuna purse seine vessels, upon receipt of written 
notification from the owner or managing owner of the intent to transfer 
the vessel to foreign registry and flag, as described in paragraph 
(b)(8) of this section; or
    (viii) For tuna purse seine vessels, if the request for active 
status on the Vessel Register has been determined to be a frivolous 
request.
    (6) Process for Removal from the Vessel Register. When a vessel is 
removed from the Vessel Register under paragraph (b)(5) of this section, 
the Regional Administrator shall promptly notify the vessel owner in 
writing of the removal and the reasons therefor. For a removal from the 
Vessel Register under Sec. 300.22(b)(5)(iii), the Regional Administrator 
will not accept a request to reinstate the vessel to the Vessel Register 
for the term of the permit sanction. For a removal from the Vessel 
Register under Sec. 300.22(b)(5)(iv), the Regional Administrator will 
not accept a request to reinstate the vessel to the Vessel Register 
until such time as payment is made on the penalty or penalty agreement, 
or such other duration as NOAA and the vessel owner may agree upon.
    (7) Procedures for replacing purse seine vessels removed from the 
Vessel Register. (i) A purse seine vessel in excess of 400 st (362.8 mt) 
carrying capacity that was previously listed on the Vessel Register, but 
not included for a given year or years, may be added back to the Vessel 
Register and categorized as inactive at any time during the year, 
provided the owner or managing owner of the vessel pays the vessel 
assessment fee associated with inactive status. A purse seine vessel of 
400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity or less that was previously listed 
on the Vessel Register, but not included for a given year or years, may 
be added back to the Vessel Register and categorized as inactive at any 
time during the year, provided the owner or managing owner of the vessel 
submits written notification as described in paragraph (b)(4)(iii) of 
this section.
    (ii) A purse seine vessel may be added to the Vessel Register and 
categorized as active in order to replace a vessel removed from active 
status under paragraph (b)(5) of this section, provided the total 
carrying capacity of the active vessels does not exceed 31,775 cubic 
meters and the owner submits a complete request under paragraph 
(b)(7)(iv) or (b)(7)(v) of this section.
    (iii) After a purse seine vessel categorized as active is removed 
from the Vessel Register, the Regional Administrator will notify owners 
or managing owners of vessels categorized as inactive that replacement 
capacity is available on the active list of the Vessel Register. In the 
event that owners of inactive vessels do not request to replace a 
removed vessel, the Regional Administrator will notify owners of vessels 
eligible for, but not included on, the Vessel Register that replacement 
capacity is available on the active list of the Vessel Register.
    (iv) Vessel owners or managing owners may request a purse seine 
vessel of 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity or less be categorized as 
active to replace a vessel or vessels removed from the Vessel Register 
by submitting to the Regional Administrator written notification as 
described in paragraph (b)(4)(i) of this section and, only if the vessel 
is required by the Agreement on the IDCP to carry an observer, payment 
of the vessel assessment fee within 10 business days after submission of 
the faxed written notification. The replacement vessel will be eligible 
to be categorized as active on the Vessel Register if it has a carrying 
capacity equal to or less than the vessel or vessels being replaced. 
Payments received will be subject to a 10 percent surcharge for vessels 
that were listed as active on the Vessel Register in the previous 
calendar year, but not listed as inactive at the beginning of the 
calendar year for which active status was requested.
    (v) Vessel owners or managing owners may request a purse seine 
vessel in excess of 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity be categorized 
as active to replace a vessel or vessels removed from the Vessel 
Register by submitting to the Regional Administrator the vessel permit 
application as described under Sec. 216.24(b) of this title and payment 
of the vessel assessment fee and permit application fee within 10 
business days

[[Page 154]]

after submission of the faxed vessel permit application for the 
replacement vessel. The replacement vessel will be eligible to be 
categorized as active on the Vessel Register if it has a carrying 
capacity equal to or less than the vessel or vessels being replaced, and 
the captain of the replacement vessel possesses an operator permit under 
Sec. 216.24(b) of this title. Payments received will be subject to a 10 
percent surcharge for vessels that were listed as active on the Vessel 
Register in the previous calendar year, but not listed as inactive at 
the beginning of the calendar year for which active status was 
requested.
    (vi) The Regional Administrator will forward requests to replace 
vessels removed from the Vessel Register within 15 days of receiving 
each request.
    (8) The owner or managing owner of a purse seine vessel listed on 
the Vessel Register must provide written notification to the Regional 
Administrator prior to submitting an application for transfer of the 
vessel to foreign registry and flag. Written notification must be 
submitted by mail and received by the Regional Administrator at least 10 
business days prior to submission of the application for transfer. The 
written notification must include the vessel name and registration 
number; the expected date that the application for transfer will be 
submitted; and the vessel owner or managing owner's name and signature. 
Vessels that require approval by the U.S. Maritime Administration prior 
to transfer of the vessel to foreign registry and flag will not be 
subject to the notification requirement described in this paragraph.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 66 FR 49320, Sept. 27, 2001; 
70 FR 19010, Apr. 12, 2005; 74 FR 1618, Jan. 13, 2009; 76 FR 287, Jan. 
4, 2011; 76 FR 68337, Nov. 4, 2011; 79 FR 56018, Sept. 18, 2014; 81 FR 
1879, Jan. 14, 2016; 81 FR 36184, June 6, 2016]



Sec. 300.23  Eastern Pacific fisheries - Persons and vessels exempted.

    This subpart does not apply to:
    (a) Any person or vessel authorized by the IATTC, the Assistant 
Administrator, or any state of the United States to engage in fishing 
for research purposes.
    (b) Any person or vessel engaged in sport fishing for personal use.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 74 FR 1620, Jan. 13, 2009]



Sec. 300.24  Prohibitions.

    In addition to the prohibitions in Sec. 300.4, it is unlawful for 
any person or vessel subject to the jurisdiction of the United States 
to:
    (a) Land any species of tuna during the closed season for that 
species in excess of the amount allowed by the Regional Administrator.
    (b) [Reserved]
    (c) Use tender vessels in the Convention Area.
    (d) Transship purse seine-caught tuna at sea within the Convention 
Area.
    (e) Fail to retain any bigeye, skipjack, or yellowfin tuna caught by 
a fishing vessel of the United States of class size 4-6 using purse 
seine gear in the Convention Area as required under Sec. 300.27(a).
    (f) When using purse seine gear to fish for tuna in the Convention 
Area, fail to release any non-tuna species as soon as practicable after 
being identified on board the vessel during the brailing operation as 
required in Sec. 300.27(b).
    (g) Land any non-tuna fish species taken in a purse seine set in the 
Convention Area.
    (h) Fail to use the sea turtle handling, release, and resuscitation 
procedures in Sec. 300.27(c).
    (i) Fail to report information when requested by the Regional 
Administrator under Sec. 300.22.
    (j) Fail to provide written notification as described under 
Sec. 300.22(b)(8) to the Regional Administrator at least 10 business 
days prior to submission of an application to transfer a purse seine 
vessel listed on the Vessel Register to foreign registry and flag, 
unless transfer of the vessel requires approval by the U.S. Maritime 
Administration.
    (k) Use a U.S. fishing vessel over 24 meters in length to retain on 
board, transship, or land bigeye tuna caught by longline gear in the 
Convention Area or to fish in contravention of Sec. 300.25(a)(4)(i) or 
(ii).
    (l) Use a U.S. fishing vessel over 24 meters in overall length to 
fish with longline gear in the Pacific Ocean both

[[Page 155]]

inside and outside the Convention Area on the same fishing trip in 
contravention of Sec. 300.25(a)(4)(iii).
    (m) Fail to stow gear as required in Sec. 300.25(a)(4)(iv) or 
(e)(7).
    (n) Use a fishing vessel of class size 4-6 to fish with purse seine 
gear in the Convention Area in contravention of Sec. 300.25(e)(1), 
(e)(2), or (e)(5) or (e)(6).
    (o) Use a U.S. longline or purse seine fishing vessel used to fish 
for HMS within one nautical mile of an anchored data buoy while the 
fishing vessel is in the Convention Area in contravention of 
Sec. 300.25(f)(1).
    (p) Use a U.S. fishing vessel used for fishing for HMS, or any gear, 
equipment, or watercraft deployed by such a fishing vessel, to interact 
with a data buoy in the Convention Area in contravention of 
Sec. 300.25(f)(2).
    (q) Remove from the water a data buoy and place it on board or tow a 
data buoy with a U.S. fishing vessel used for fishing for HMS while the 
vessel is in the Convention Area without authorization by the owner of 
the data buoy or the owner's authorized representative in contravention 
of Sec. 300.25(f)(3).
    (r) In the event of an entanglement of a data buoy with a U.S. 
fishing vessel, or its fishing gear, equipment, or associated 
watercraft, used for fishing for HMS in the Convention Area, fail to 
promptly remove the data buoy with as little damage to the data buoy and 
its mooring and anchor lines as possible, in contravention of 
Sec. 300.25(f)(4).
    (s) Fail to take all reasonable measures to avoid fishing gear 
entanglement or interaction with drifting data buoys in contravention of 
Sec. 300.25(f)(5).
    (t) Use a U.S. fishing vessel to fish for HMS in the Convention Area 
and retain on board, transship, land, store, sell, or offer for sale any 
part or whole carcass of an oceanic whitetip shark (Carcharhinus 
longimanus) or fail to release unharmed, to the extent practicable, all 
oceanic whitetip sharks when brought alongside the vessel in 
contravention of Sec. 300.27(d).
    (u) Use a United States commercial fishing vessel in the Convention 
Area to target, retain on board, transship, or land Pacific bluefin tuna 
in contravention of Sec. 300.25(g)(3) through (5).
    (v) Fail to maintain, submit, or ensure submission of a log that 
includes all the information required in Sec. 300.22(a).
    (w) Set or attempt to set a purse seine on or around a whale shark 
(Rhincodon typus) in contravention of Sec. 300.27(e).
    (x) Fail to release a whale shark encircled in a purse seine net of 
a fishing vessel as required in Sec. 300.27(f).
    (y) Fail to install, activate, or operate a VMS unit as required in 
Sec. 300.26(c).
    (z) In the event of VMS unit failure or interruption; fail to repair 
or replace a VMS unit; fail to notify the Special-Agent-In-Charge, NOAA 
Office of Law Enforcement, Pacific Islands Division (or designee); and 
follow the instructions provided; or otherwise fail to act as provided 
in Sec. 300.26(c)(4).
    (aa) Disable, destroy, damage or operate improperly a VMS unit 
installed under Sec. 300.26, or attempt to do any of the same, or fail 
to ensure that its operation is not impeded or interfered with, as 
provided in Sec. 300.26(e).
    (bb) Fail to make a VMS unit installed under Sec. 300.26 or the 
position data obtained from it available for inspection, as provided in 
Sec. 300.26 (f) and (g).
    (cc) To retain on board, transship, store, land, sell, or offer for 
sale any part or whole carcass of a mobulid ray, as described in 
Sec. 300.27(g).
    (dd) Fail to handle or release a mobulid ray as required in 
Sec. 300.27(h).
    (ee) Fail to ensure characters of a unique code are marked indelibly 
on a FAD deployed or modified on or after January 1, 2017, in accordance 
with Sec. 300.25(h).
    (ff) Fail to record and report data on interactions or activities on 
FADs as required in Sec. 300.25(i).
    (gg) Use a commercial purse seine fishing vessel of the United 
States to retain on board, transship, store, or land any part or whole 
carcass of a silky shark (Carcharhinus falciformis) in contravention of 
Sec. 300.27(e).
    (hh) Use a U.S. longline vessel to catch silky shark in 
contravention of Sec. 300.27(f).

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996]

    Editorial Note: For Federal Register citations affecting 
Sec. 300.24, see the List of CFR

[[Page 156]]

Sections Affected, which appears in the Finding Aids section of the 
printed volume and at www.fdsys.gov.



Sec. 300.25  Fisheries management.

    (a) Longline tuna catch limits. (1) Fishing seasons for all tuna 
species begin on January 1 and end either on December 31 or when NMFS 
closes the fishery for a specific species.
    (2) For the calendar year 2017, there is a limit of 500 metric tons 
of bigeye tuna that may be caught by longline gear in the Convention 
Area by U.S. commercial fishing vessels that are over 24 meters in 
overall length.
    (3) NMFS will project a date the limit of bigeye tuna established 
under paragraph (a)(2) of this section will be reached (i.e., a closure 
date) by monitoring longline landings, data submitted in logbooks, and 
other available information. NMFS will publish a notice in the Federal 
Register at least 7 calendar days in advance of that projected closure 
date announcing that the limit has been reached. The Federal Register 
notice will specify that the restrictions described in paragraph (a)(4) 
of this section will be in effect through the end of the calendar year.
    (4) Once the closure date is announced, pursuant to paragraph (a)(3) 
of this section the following restrictions will apply during the period 
specified in the announcement:
    (i) A fishing vessel of the United States over 24 meters in overall 
length may not be used to retain on board, transship, or land bigeye 
tuna captured by longline gear in the Convention Area, except as 
follows:
    (A) Any bigeye tuna already on board a U.S. fishing vessel upon the 
effective closure date may be retained on board, transshipped, and/or 
landed, to the extent authorized by applicable laws and regulations, 
provided that the bigeye tuna is landed within 14 days after the 
effective closure date.
    (B) The 14-day limit is waived in the case of a U.S. fishing vessel 
that has already declared to NMFS, pursuant to Sec. 665.803(a) of this 
title, that the current trip type is shallow-setting. However, the 
number of bigeye tuna retained on board, transshipped, or landed must 
not exceed the number on board the vessel upon the effective closure 
date, as recorded by the NMFS observer on board the vessel.
    (ii) Bigeye tuna caught by a vessel of the United States over 24 
meters in overall length and using longline gear in the Convention Area 
may not be transshipped to a fishing vessel unless that fishing vessel 
is operated in compliance with a valid permit issued under Sec. 660.707 
or Sec. 665.801 of this title.
    (iii) A fishing vessel of the United States over 24 meters in 
overall length may not be used to fish in the Pacific Ocean using 
longline gear both inside and outside the Convention Area during the 
same fishing trip. The only exceptions are: a fishing trip during which 
the closure date was announced under paragraph (a)(3) of this section, 
and a trip for which a declaration has been made to NMFS, pursuant to 
Sec. 665.803(a) of this title, that the current trip is shallow-setting.
    (iv) If a fishing vessel of the United States over 24 meters in 
overall length is used to fish in the Pacific Ocean using longline gear 
outside the Convention Area and the vessel enters the Convention Area at 
any time during an effective closure period on the same fishing trip, 
the longline gear on the fishing vessel must be stowed in a manner so as 
not to be readily available for fishing. Specifically, the hooks, branch 
or dropper lines, and floats used to buoy the mainline must be stowed 
and not available for immediate use, and any power-operated mainline 
hauler on deck must be covered in such a manner that it is not readily 
available for use. This provision does not apply to trips in which 
vessels have made a declaration to NMFS, pursuant to Sec. 665.803(a) of 
this title, that the trip type is shallow-setting.
    (b) Use of tender vessels. No person subject to these regulations 
may use a tender vessel in the Convention Area.
    (c) Transshipments at sea. No person subject to these regulations 
may transship purse seine-caught tuna from one vessel to another vessel 
at sea within the Convention Area.
    (d) [Reserved]
    (e) Purse seine closures--(1) Closure periods--(i) General rule. A 
commercial purse seine fishing vessel of the United States of class size 
4-6 (more than 182 metric tons carrying capacity) may not

[[Page 157]]

be used to fish with purse seine gear in the Convention Area for 72 days 
during one of the following two closure periods:
    (A) From 0000 hours Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) July 29, 2017, 
to 2400 hours UTC October 8, 2017; or,
    (B) From 0000 hours UTC November 9, 2017, to 2400 hours UTC January 
19, 2018.
    (ii) Vessels with DMLs. Notwithstanding paragraph (e)(1)(i) of this 
section, a purse seine vessel for which a dolphin mortality limit has 
been assigned may fish during 10 days of the closure period the vessel 
selected, if the vessel makes no floating object sets during this 
period. The respective 10-day periods are:
    (A) From 0000 hours UTC September 29, 2017, to 2400 hours UTC 
October 8, 2017; and,
    (B) From 0000 hours UTC November 9, 2017, to 2400 hours UTC November 
18, 2017.
    (2) A vessel owner, manager, or association representative of a 
vessel that is subject to the requirements of paragraph (e)(1) of this 
section must, in 2017, provide written notification to the Regional 
Administrator declaring to which one of the two closure periods 
identified in paragraph (e)(1) of this section his or her vessel will 
adhere in that year. This written notification must be submitted by fax 
at (562) 980-4047 or email at RegionalAdministrator .WCRHMS@noaa.gov and 
must be received no later than July 1 2017. The written notification 
must include the vessel name and registration number, the closure dates 
that will be adhered to by that vessel, and the vessel owner or managing 
owner's name, signature, business address, and business telephone 
number.
    (3) If written notification is not submitted per paragraph (e)(2) of 
this section for a vessel subject to the requirements under paragraph 
(e)(1)(i) of this section, that vessel must adhere to the closure period 
under paragraph (e)(1)(i)(B) of this section.
    (4) Request for exemption due to force majeure. A request for 
exemption due to force majeure must be made to the Sustainable Fisheries 
Division by fax at (562) 980-4047 or emailed to RegionalAdministrator 
.WCRHMS@noaa.gov. The request must include the name and official number 
of the vessel, vessel owner or manager's name and signature, and 
evidence to support the request, which may include but is not limited to 
photographs, repair bills, certificates of departure from port, and in 
the case of a marine casualty, a completed copy of the U.S. Coast Guard 
Form CG-2692A (See 46 CFR 4.05-10).
    (i) If accepted by the Sustainable Fisheries Division, the request 
for exemption due to force majeure will be forwarded to the IATTC 
Director. If declined by the Sustainable Fisheries Division, within 10 
days of the date of that rejection, the applicant may give additional 
information or documentation to the Regional Administrator with a 
request that the initial decision be reconsidered by fax at (562) 980-
4047 or email to RegionalAdministrator .WCRHMS@noaa.gov; the Regional 
Administrator shall respond within 14 business days.
    (ii) If the request for an exemption due to force majeure is 
accepted by the IATTC, the vessel must observe a closure period of 30 
consecutive days in the same year during which the force majeure event 
occurred, in one of the two closure periods described in paragraph 
(e)(1) of this section.
    (5) A vessel of class size 4 (182 to 272 metric tons carrying 
capacity) may make one fishing trip of up to 30 days duration during the 
specified closure period in paragraph (e)(1) of this section, provided 
that the vessel carries an observer authorized pursuant to the Agreement 
on the International Dolphin Conservation Program during the entire 
fishing trip.
    (6) A fishing vessel of the United States of class size 4-6 (more 
than 182 metric tons carrying capacity) may not be used from 0000 hours 
on October 9 to 2400 hours on November 8 in 2017 to fish with purse 
seine gear within the area bounded at the east and west by 96 and 110 
W. longitude and bounded at the north and south by 4 N. and 3 S. 
latitude.
    (7) At all times while a vessel is in a time/area closed period 
established under paragraphs (e)(1) or (e)(6) of this section, unless 
fishing under exceptions established under paragraphs (e)(4) or

[[Page 158]]

(e)(5) of this section, the fishing gear of the vessel must be stowed in 
a manner as not to be readily available for fishing. In particular, the 
boom must be lowered as far as possible so that the vessel cannot be 
used for fishing, but so that the skiff is accessible for use in 
emergency situations; the helicopter, if any, must be tied down; and 
launches must be secured.
    (f) Restrictions on fishing in proximity to data buoys. (1) A 
longline or purse seine fishing vessel of the United States may not be 
used to fish for HMS within one nautical mile of an anchored data buoy 
in the Convention Area. The one-nautical-mile distance shall be measured 
from the data buoy to the nearest portion of the fishing vessel or items 
associated with the fishing vessel, such as gear or watercraft deployed 
by the fishing vessel, to the data buoy. This prohibition shall not 
apply if and when the fishing vessel is operated as part of a scientific 
research program that has received specific authorization by the IATTC 
or is conducting work on behalf of the IATTC.
    (2) A fishing vessel of the United States used to fish for HMS, or 
any fishing gear, equipment, or watercraft deployed by such a fishing 
vessel, may not be used to interact with a data buoy while the fishing 
vessel is in the Convention Area. Interact with a data buoy means to 
engage in conduct that could impair the functioning of a data buoy 
through actions that include but that are not limited to the following: 
encircling the buoy with fishing gear; tying up to or attaching the 
vessel, or any fishing gear, part or portion of the fishing vessel, 
including equipment such as watercraft, to a data buoy or its mooring; 
or cutting a data buoy anchor line.
    (3) A vessel operator, crew member, or other persons on board a 
fishing vessel of the United States that is used to fish for HMS may not 
remove a data buoy or any parts thereof from the water and place it on 
board the fishing vessel or tow a data buoy when in the Convention Area 
unless authorized to do so by the owner of the data buoy or an 
authorized representative or agent of the owner. When practicable, 
advance written authorization must be available onboard a U.S. fishing 
vessel that has taken on board or tows a data buoy. In all other cases, 
a written document (e.g., fax, email) verifying the authorization must 
be obtained by the vessel owner or operator within 15 days of landing.
    (4) In the event that a fishing vessel of the United States that is 
used to fish for HMS or any of its fishing gear, equipment, or 
associated watercraft, becomes entangled with a data buoy while the 
fishing vessel is in the Convention Area, the owner and operator of the 
fishing vessel must promptly remove the entangled fishing vessel, 
fishing gear, equipment, or associated watercraft with as little damage 
to the data buoy and its mooring and anchor lines as possible.
    (5) A vessel operator, crew member, or other persons on board a 
fishing vessel of the United States that is used to fish for HMS must 
take all reasonable measures to avoid fishing gear entanglement or 
interaction with drifting data buoys.
    (g) Pacific bluefin tuna (Thunnus orientalis) commercial catch 
limits in the eastern Pacific Ocean for 2017-2018. The following is 
applicable to the U.S. commercial fishery for Pacific bluefin tuna in 
the Convention Area in the years 2017 and 2018.
    (1) For the calendar year 2017, all commercial fishing vessels of 
the United States combined may capture, retain, transship, or land no 
more than 425 metric tons in the Convention Area.
    (2) In 2018, NMFS will publish a notice in the Federal Register 
announcing the 2018 catch limit. For the calendar year 2018, all 
commercial fishing vessels of the United States combined may capture, 
retain on board, transship, or land no more than the 2018 annual catch 
limit. The 2018 catch limit is calculated by adding any amount of the 
425 metric ton catch limit that was not caught in 2017, as determined by 
NMFS, to 175 metric tons, except as follows:
    (i) If 175 metric tons or less are caught in 2017, as determined by 
NMFS, then the 2018 catch limit is 425 metric tons; or,
    (ii) If greater than 425 metric tons are caught in 2017, as 
determined by

[[Page 159]]

NMFS, then the 2018 catch limit is calculated by subtracting the amount 
caught in 2017 from 600 metric tons.
    (3) In 2017 and 2018, a 25 metric ton trip limit will be in effect 
until NMFS anticipates that catch will be within 50 metric tons of the 
catch limit, after which a 2 metric ton trip limit will be in effect 
upon publication of a notice in the Federal Register by NMFS.
    (4) After NMFS determines that the catch limits under paragraphs 
(g)(1) and (g)(2) of this section are expected to be reached by a future 
date, NMFS will publish a fishing closure notice in the Federal Register 
announcing the effective date that targeting, retaining on board, 
transshipping, or landing Pacific bluefin tuna in the Convention Area 
shall be prohibited as described in paragraph (g)(5) of this section.
    (5) Beginning on the date announced in the fishing closure notice 
published under paragraph (g)(4) of this section through the end of the 
calendar year, a commercial fishing vessel of the United States may not 
be used to target, retain on board, transship, or land Pacific bluefin 
tuna captured in the Convention Area, with the exception that any 
Pacific bluefin tuna already on board a fishing vessel on the effective 
date of the notice may be retained on board, transshipped, and/or 
landed, to the extent authorized by applicable laws and regulations, 
provided such Pacific bluefin tuna is landed within 14 days after the 
effective date published in the fishing closure notice.
    (h) FAD identification requirements for purse seine vessels. (1) For 
each FAD deployed or modified on or after January 1, 2017, in the IATTC 
Convention Area, the vessel owner or operator must either: Obtain a 
unique code from HMS Branch; or use an existing unique identifier 
associated with the FAD (e.g., the manufacturer identification code for 
the attached buoy).
    (2) U.S. purse seine vessel owners and operators shall ensure the 
characters of the unique code or unique identifier be marked indelibly 
at least five centimeters in height on the upper portion of the attached 
radio or satellite buoy in a location that does not cover the solar 
cells used to power the equipment. For FADs without attached radio or 
satellite buoys, the characters shall be on the uppermost or emergent 
top portion of the FAD. The vessel owner or operator shall ensure the 
marking is visible at all times during daylight. In circumstances where 
the on-board observer is unable to view the code, the captain or crew 
shall assist the observer (e.g., by providing the FAD identification 
code to the observer).
    (i) FAD data reporting for purse seine vessels. U.S. vessel owners 
and operators must ensure that any interaction or activity with a FAD is 
reported using a standard format provided by the HMS Branch. The owner 
and operator shall ensure that the form is submitted to the address 
specified by the HMS Branch.

[64 FR 44431, Aug. 16, 1999]

    Editorial Note: For Federal Register citations affecting 
Sec. 300.25, see the List of CFR Sections Affected, which appears in the 
Finding Aids section of the printed volume and at www.fdsys.gov.



Sec. 300.26  Vessel monitoring system (VMS).

    (a) Assistant Director (AD), NOAA Office of Law Enforcement, Pacific 
Islands Division (or designee) and VMS Helpdesk contact information and 
business hours. (1) The contact information for the AD for the purpose 
of this section: 1845 Wasp Blvd., Building 176, Honolulu, HI 96818; 
telephone: (808) 725-6100; facsimile: 808-725-6199; email: 
pidvms@noaa.gov; business hours: Monday through Friday, except Federal 
holidays, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Hawaii Standard Time.
    (2) The contact information for the NOAA Office of Law Enforcement's 
VMS Helpdesk is telephone: (888) 219-9228, ext. 2; email: 
ole.helpdesk@noaa.gov. The business hours of the VMS Helpdesk are Monday 
through Friday, except Federal holidays, 7 a.m. to 11 p.m., Eastern 
Time.
    (b) Applicability. This section applies to any U.S. commercial 
fishing vessel that is 24 meters or more in overall length and engaging 
in fishing activities for tuna or tuna-like species in the Convention 
Area, and for which either of the following permits is required: Pacific 
highly migratory species permit under Sec. 660.707, or high seas fishing 
permit under Sec. 300.13 of this part.

[[Page 160]]

    (c) Provisions for Installation, Activation and Operation--(1) VMS 
Unit Installation. The vessel owner or operator must obtain and have 
installed on the fishing vessel, in accordance with instructions 
provided by the AD and the VMS unit manufacturer, a VMS unit that is 
type-approved by NOAA for fisheries in the IATTC Convention Area. The 
vessel owner or operator shall arrange for a NOAA-approved mobile 
communications service provider to receive and relay transmissions from 
the VMS unit to NOAA at a default reporting interval of at least once 
per hour. NOAA, the USCG, and other authorized entities are authorized 
to receive and relay transmissions from the VMS unit. The NOAA OLE VMS 
Helpdesk is available to provide instructions for VMS installation and a 
list of the current type-approved VMS units and mobile communication 
service providers.
    (2) VMS Unit Activation. If the VMS unit has not yet been activated 
as described in this paragraph, or if the VMS unit has been newly 
installed or reinstalled, or if the mobile communications service 
provider has changed since the previous activation, or if directed by 
the AD, the vessel owner or operator must, prior to leaving port:
    (i) Turn on the VMS unit to make it operational;
    (ii) Submit a written activation report to the AD, via mail, 
facsimile or email, that includes the vessel's name; the vessel's 
official number; the VMS unit manufacturer and identification number; 
and telephone, facsimile or email contact information for the vessel 
owner or operator; and
    (iii) Receive verbal or written confirmation from the AD that the 
proper VMS unit transmissions are being received from the VMS unit.
    (3) VMS Unit Operation. The vessel owner and operator shall 
continuously operate the VMS unit at all times, except that the VMS unit 
may be shut down while the vessel is in port or otherwise not at sea, or 
if, after the end of the fishing season, the vessel will no longer be 
engaging in fishing activities in the Convention Area for which either a 
Pacific highly migratory species permit or a high seas fishing permit is 
required, provided that the owner or operator:
    (i) Prior to shutting down the VMS unit, reports to the AD or the 
NOAA Office of Law Enforcement's VMS Helpdesk via facsimile, email, or 
web-form the following information: The intent to shut down the VMS 
unit; the vessel's name; the vessel's official number; an estimate for 
when the vessel's VMS may be turned back on; and telephone, facsimile or 
email contact information for the vessel owner or operator. In addition, 
the vessel owner or operator shall receive verbal or written 
confirmation from the AD before shutting down the VMS unit after the end 
of the fishing season; and
    (ii) When turning the VMS unit back on, report to the AD or the NOAA 
Office of Law Enforcement's VMS Helpdesk, via mail, facsimile or email, 
the following information: That the VMS unit has been turned on; the 
vessel's name; the vessel's official number; and telephone, facsimile or 
email contact information for the vessel owner or operator; and
    (iii) Prior to leaving port, receive verbal or written confirmation 
from the AD that proper transmissions are being received from the VMS 
unit.
    (4) Failure of VMS unit. If the VMS unit has become inoperable or 
transmission of automatic position reports from the VMS unit has been 
interrupted, or if notified by NOAA or the USCG that automatic position 
reports are not being received from the VMS unit or that an inspection 
of the VMS unit has revealed a problem with the performance of the VMS 
unit, the vessel owner or operator shall comply with the following 
requirements:
    (i) If the vessel is at port: The vessel owner or operator shall 
repair or replace the VMS unit and ensure it is operable before the 
vessel leaves port.
    (ii) If the vessel is at sea: The vessel owner, operator, or 
designee shall contact the AD by telephone, facsimile, or email at the 
earliest opportunity during the AD's business hours and identify the 
caller and vessel. The vessel operator shall follow the instructions 
provided by the AD which could include, but are not limited to, ceasing 
fishing, stowing fishing gear, returning

[[Page 161]]

to port, and/or submitting periodic position reports at specified 
intervals by other means; and repair or replace the VMS unit and ensure 
it is operable before starting the next trip.
    (5) Related VMS Requirements. Installing, carrying and operating a 
VMS unit in compliance with the requirements in part 300 of this title, 
part 660 of this title, or part 665 of this title relating to the 
installation, carrying, and operation of VMS units shall be deemed to 
satisfy the requirements of this paragraph (c), provided that the VMS 
unit is operated continuously and at all times while the vessel is at 
sea, unless the AD authorizes a VMS unit to be shut down as described in 
paragraph (c)(3) of this section, the VMS unit and mobile communications 
service providers are type-approved by NOAA for fisheries in IATTC 
Convention Area, and the specific requirements of paragraph (c)(4) of 
this section are followed. If the VMS unit is owned by NOAA, the 
requirement under paragraph (c)(4) of this section to repair or replace 
the VMS unit will be the responsibility of NOAA, but the vessel owner 
and operator shall be responsible for ensuring that the VMS unit is 
operable before leaving port or starting the next trip.
    (d) Costs. The vessel owner and operator shall be responsible for 
all costs associated with the purchase, installation and maintenance of 
the VMS unit and for all charges levied by the mobile communications 
service provider as necessary to ensure the transmission of automatic 
position reports to NOAA as required in paragraph (c) of this section. 
However, if NOAA is paying for the VMS-associated costs because the VMS 
unit is carried and operated under a requirement of part 300 of this 
title, part 660 of this title, or part 665 of this title, the vessel 
owner and operator shall not be responsible for costs that those 
regulations specify are the responsibility of NOAA. In addition, NOAA is 
responsible for the cost of any temporary increase in the default 
reporting interval to support active enforcement investigations of 
specific vessels.
    (e) Tampering. The vessel owner and operator must ensure that the 
VMS unit is not tampered with, disabled, destroyed, damaged or 
maintained improperly, and that its operation is not impeded or 
interfered with.
    (f) Inspection. The vessel owner and operator must make the VMS 
unit, including its antenna, connectors and antenna cable, available for 
inspection by authorized officers.
    (g) Access to data. The vessel owner and operator must make the 
vessel's position data obtained from the VMS unit or other means 
immediately and always available for inspection by NOAA personnel, USCG 
personnel, and authorized officers.

[80 FR 60538, Oct. 7, 2015]



Sec. 300.27  Incidental catch and tuna retention requirements.

    (a) Tuna retention requirements for purse seine vessels. Bigeye, 
skipjack, and yellowfin tuna caught in the Convention Area by a fishing 
vessel of the United States of class size 4-6 (more than 182 metric tons 
carrying capacity) using purse seine gear must be retained on board and 
landed, except for fish deemed unfit for human consumption for reasons 
other than size. This requirement shall not apply to the last set of a 
trip if the available well capacity is insufficient to accommodate the 
entire catch.
    (b) Release requirements for non-tuna species on purse seine 
vessels. All purse seine vessels must release all shark, billfish, ray 
(not including mobulid rays, which are subject to paragraph (g) of this 
section), dorado (Coryphaena hippurus), and other non-tuna fish species, 
except those being retained for consumption aboard the vessel, as soon 
as practicable after being identified on board the vessel during the 
brailing operation.
    (c) Sea turtle handling and release. All purse seine vessels must 
apply special sea turtle handling and release requirements, as follows:
    (1) Whenever a sea turtle is sighted in the net, a speedboat shall 
be stationed close to the point where the net is lifted out of the water 
to assist in release of the sea turtle;
    (2) If a sea turtle is entangled in the net, net roll shall stop as 
soon as the sea turtle comes out of the water and shall not resume until 
the sea turtle has been disentangled and released;

[[Page 162]]

    (3) If, in spite of the measures taken under paragraphs (c)(1) and 
(c)(2) of this section, a sea turtle is accidentally brought on board 
the vessel alive and active, the vessel's engine shall be disengaged and 
the sea turtle shall be released as quickly as practicable;
    (4) If a sea turtle brought on board under paragraph (c)(3) of this 
section is alive but comatose or inactive, the resuscitation procedures 
described in Sec. 223.206(d)(1)(i)(B) of this title shall be used before 
release of the turtle.
    (d) Oceanic whitetip shark restrictions. The crew, operator, or 
owner of a fishing vessel of the United States used to fish for HMS in 
the Convention Area shall be prohibited from retaining on board, 
transshipping, landing, storing, selling, or offering for sale any part 
or whole carcass of an oceanic whitetip shark (Carcharhinus longimanus) 
and must release unharmed, to the extent practicable, all oceanic 
whitetip sharks when brought alongside the vessel.
    (e) Silky shark restrictions for purse seine vessels. The crew, 
operator, and owner of a commercial purse seine fishing vessel of the 
United States used to fish for tuna or tuna-like species is prohibited 
from retaining on board, transshipping, storing, or landing any part or 
whole carcass of a silky shark (Carcharhinus falciformis) that is caught 
in the Convention Area.
    (f) Silky shark restrictions for longline vessels. The crew, 
operator, and owner of a longline vessel of the United States used to 
fish for tuna or tuna-like species must limit the retained catch of 
silky sharks caught in the IATTC Convention Area to a maximum of 20 
percent in weight of the total catch during each fishing trip that 
occurs in whole or in part in the IATTC Convention Area.
    (g) Whale shark restrictions for purse seine vessels. Owners, 
operators, and crew of fishing vessels of the United States commercially 
fishing for tuna in the Convention Area may not set or attempt to set a 
purse seine on or around a whale shark (Rhincodon typus) if the animal 
is sighted prior to the commencement of the set or the attempted set.
    (h) Whale shark release. The crew, operator, and owner of a fishing 
vessel of the United States commercially fishing for tuna in the 
Convention Area must release as soon as possible, any whale shark that 
is encircled in a purse seine net, and must ensure that all reasonable 
steps are taken to ensure its safe release.
    (i) Mobulid ray restrictions. The crew, operator, and owner of a 
U.S. commercial fishing vessel is prohibited from retaining on board, 
transshipping, storing, landing, selling, or offering for sale any part 
or whole carcass of a mobulid ray that is caught in the IATTC Convention 
Area, except as provided in the following sentence. In the case of any 
mobulid ray caught in the IATTC Convention Area on an observed purse 
seine vessel that is not seen during fishing operations and is delivered 
into the vessel hold, the mobulid ray may be stored on board and landed, 
but the vessel owner or operator must show the whole mobulid ray to the 
on-board observer at the point of landing for recording purposes, and 
then dispose of the mobulid ray at the direction of the responsible 
government authority. In U.S. ports the responsible governmental 
authority is the NOAA Office of Law Enforcement divisional office 
nearest to the port, or other authorized personnel. Mobulid rays that 
are caught and landed in this manner may not be sold or bartered, but 
may be donated for purposes of domestic human consumption consistent 
with relevant laws and policies.
    (j) Mobulid ray handling and release. The crew, operator, and owner 
of a U.S. commercial fishing vessel must promptly release unharmed, to 
the extent practicable, any mobulid ray (whether live or dead) caught in 
the IATTC Convention Area as soon as it is seen in the net, on the hook, 
or on the deck, without compromising the safety of any persons. If a 
mobulid ray is live when caught, the crew, operator, and owner of a U.S. 
commercial fishing vessel must use the release procedures described in 
the following two paragraphs.
    (1) No mobulid ray may be gaffed, no mobulid ray may be lifted by 
the gill slits or spiracles or by using bind wire against or inserted 
through the body, and no holes may be punched through the bodies of 
mobulid ray (e.g., to pass

[[Page 163]]

a cable through for lifting the mobulid ray).
    (2) Applicable to purse seine operations, large mobulid rays must be 
brailed out of the net by directly releasing the mobulid ray from the 
brailer into the ocean. Large mobulid rays that cannot be released 
without compromising the safety of persons or the mobulid ray before 
being landed on deck, must be returned to the water as soon as possible, 
either utilizing a ramp from the deck connecting to an opening on the 
side of the boat, or lowered with a sling or net, using a crane if 
available. The minimum size for the sling or net must be at least 25 
feet in diameter.

[81 FR 50403, Aug. 1, 2016, as amended at 81 FR 86970, Dec. 2, 2016]



                 Subpart D_South Pacific Tuna Fisheries

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 973-973r.



Sec. 300.30  Purpose and scope.

    This subpart implements the South Pacific Tuna Act of 1988 (Act) and 
the Treaty on Fisheries Between the Governments of Certain Pacific 
Island States and the Government of the United States of America 
(Treaty) and applies to persons and vessels subject to the jurisdiction 
of the United States.



Sec. 300.31  Definitions.

    In addition to the terms defined in Sec. 300.2, in the Act, and in 
the Treaty, and unless the context requires otherwise, the terms used in 
this subpart have the following meanings. If a term is defined 
differently in Sec. 300.2, the Act, or the Treaty, the definition in 
this section shall apply.
    Administrator means the individual or organization designated by the 
Pacific Island Parties to act on their behalf under the Treaty and 
notified to the United States.
    Applicable national law means any of the laws of Pacific Island 
Parties in the following table and any regulations or other instruments 
having the force of law implemented pursuant to these laws:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
         Pacific Island Party                         Laws
------------------------------------------------------------------------
AUSTRALIA                              Antarctic Marine Living Resources
                                        Conservation Act, 1981.
                                       Fisheries Management Act, 1991.
                                       Fisheries Administration Act,
                                        1991.
                                       Statutory Fishing Rights Charge
                                        Act, 1991.
                                       Fisheries Legislation
                                        (Consequential Provisions) Act,
                                        1991.
                                       Foreign Fishing Licences Levy
                                        Act, 1991.
                                       Fishing Levy Act, 1991.
                                       Fisheries Agreements (Payments)
                                        Act, 1991.
                                       Torres Strait Fisheries Act,
                                        1984.
                                       Whale Protection Act, 1980.
COOK ISLANDS                           Exclusive Economic Zone (Foreign
                                        Fishing Craft) Regulations,
                                        1979.
                                       Territorial Sea and Exclusive
                                        Economic Zone Act, 1977.
                                       Marine Resources Act, 1989.
FEDERATED STATES OF MICRONESIA         Titles 18 and 24 of the Code of
                                        the Federated States of
                                        Micronesia, as amended by Public
                                        Law Nos. 2-28, 2-31, 3-9, 3-10,
                                        3-34, and 3-80.
FIJI                                   Fisheries Act (Cap. 158).
                                       Fisheries Regulations (Cap. 158).
                                       Marine Spaces Act (Cap. 158A).
                                       Marine Spaces (Foreign Fishing
                                        Vessels) Regulations, 1979.
KIRIBATI                               Fisheries Ordinance, 1979.
                                       Fisheries (Amendment) Act, 1984.
                                       Marine Zones (Declaration) Act,
                                        1983.
                                       Fisheries (Pacific Island States'
                                        Treaty with the United States)
                                        Act 1988.
MARSHALL ISLANDS                       Title 33, Marine Resources Act,
                                        as amended by P.L. 1989-56, P.L.
                                        1991-43, and P.L. 1992-25 of the
                                        Marshall Islands Revised Code.
NAURU                                  Interpretation Act, 1971.
                                       Interpretation Act (Amendment)
                                        Act No. 1 1975.
                                       Interpretation Act (Amendment)
                                        Act No. 2 1975.
                                       Marine Resources Act, 1978.
NEW ZEALAND                            Antarctic Marine Living Resources
                                        Act, 1981.
                                       Continental Shelf Act, 1964.
                                       Conservation Act, 1987.

[[Page 164]]

 
                                       Driftnet Prohibition Act, 1991.
                                       Exclusive Economic Zone (Foreign
                                        Fishing Craft) Regulations,
                                        1978.
                                       Fishing Industry Board Act, 1963.
                                       Fisheries Act, 1983.
                                       Marine Mammals Protection Act,
                                        1978.
                                       Marine Reserves Act, 1971.
                                       Marine Pollution Act, 1974.
                                       Meat Act, 1964.
                                       Territorial Sea and Exclusive
                                        Economic Zone Act, 1977.
                                       Tokelau (Territorial Sea and
                                        Exclusive Economic Zone) Act,
                                        1977.
                                       Submarine Cables and Pipelines
                                        Protection Act, 1966.
                                       Sugar Loaf Islands Marine
                                        Protected Area Act, 1991.
                                       Wildlife Act, 1953.
NIUE                                   Niue Fish Protection Ordinance
                                        1965.
                                       Sunday Fishing Prohibition Act
                                        1980.
                                       Territorial Sea and Exclusive
                                        Economic Zone Act 1978.
PALAU                                  Palau National Code, Title 27.
PAPUA NEW GUINEA                       Fisheries Act (Cap 214).
                                       Fisheries Regulations (Cap 214).
                                       Fisheries (Torres Strait
                                        Protected Zone) Act, 1984.
                                       National Seas Act (Cap 361).
                                       Tuna Resources Management Act
                                        (Cap 224).
                                       Whaling Act (Cap 225).
SOLOMON ISLANDS                        Delimitation of Marine Waters
                                        Act, 1978.
                                       Fisheries Act, 1972.
                                       Fisheries Limits Act, 1977.
                                       Fisheries Regulations, 1972.
                                       Fisheries (Foreign Fishing
                                        Vessels) Regulations, 1981.
                                       Fisheries (United States of
                                        America) (Treaty) Act 1988.
TONGA                                  Fisheries Act, 1989.
TUVALU                                 Fisheries Act (Cap 45).
                                       Fisheries (Foreign Fishing
                                        Vessel) Regulations, 1982.
                                       Marine Zones (Declaration) Act,
                                        1983.
                                       Foreign Fishing Vessels Licensing
                                        (US Treaty) Order 1987.
VANUATU                                Fisheries Act 1982 (Cap 158).
                                       Fisheries Regulations, 1983.
                                       Maritime Zones Act 1981 (Cap
                                        138).
SAMOA                                  Exclusive Economic Zone Act,
                                        1977.
                                       Territorial Sea Act, 1971.
                                       Fisheries Act, 1988.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Authorized inspector means any individual authorized by a Pacific 
Island Party or the Secretary to conduct inspections, to remove samples 
of fish and to gather any other information relating to fisheries in the 
Licensing Area.
    Authorized officer means any officer who is authorized by the 
Secretary, or the Secretary of Transportation, or the head of any 
Federal or state agency that has entered into an enforcement agreement 
with the Secretary under section 10(a) of the Act.
    Authorized party officer means any officer authorized by a Pacific 
Island Party to enforce the provisions of the Treaty.
    Closed area means any of the areas in the following table, as 
depicted on charts provided by the Regional Administrator and as further 
described in additional information that may be provided by the Regional 
Administrator:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
         Pacific Island Party                         Area
------------------------------------------------------------------------
AUSTRALIA                              All waters within the seaward
                                        boundary of the Australian
                                        Fishing Zone (AFZ) west of a
                                        line connecting the point of
                                        intersection of the outer limit
                                        of the AFZ by the parallel of
                                        latitude 25 30 South
                                        with the point of intersection
                                        of the meridian of longitude 151
                                        East by the outer limit of the
                                        AFZ and all waters south of the
                                        parallel of latitude 25 30 South.
COOK ISLANDS                           Territorial Sea.
FEDERATED STATES OF MICRONESIA         Three nautical mile territorial
                                        sea and nine nautical mile
                                        exclusive fishery zone and on
                                        all named banks and reefs as
                                        depicted on the following
                                        charts:
                                       DMAHTC NO 81019 (2nd. ed., Mar.
                                        1945; revised 7/17/72; corrected
                                        through NM 3/78 of 21 June
                                        1978).
                                       DMAHTC NO 81023 (3rd. ed., 7 Aug.
                                        1976).

[[Page 165]]

 
                                       DMAHTC NO 81002 (4th. ed., 26
                                        Jan. 1980; corrected through NM
                                        4/80).
FIJI                                   Internal waters, archipelagic
                                        waters and territorial seas of
                                        Fiji and Rotuma and its
                                        Dependencies.
KIRIBATI                               Within archipelagic waters as
                                        established in accordance with
                                        Marine Zones (Declaration) Act
                                        1983; within 12 nautical miles
                                        drawn from the baselines from
                                        which the territorial seas is
                                        measured; and within 2 nautical
                                        miles of any anchored fish
                                        aggregating device within the
                                        Kiribati exclusive economic zone
                                        for which notification of its
                                        location shall be given by
                                        geographical coordinates.
MARSHALL ISLANDS                       12 nautical mile territorial sea
                                        and area within two nautical
                                        miles of any anchored fish
                                        aggregating device within the
                                        Marshall Islands exclusive
                                        economic zone for which
                                        notification of its location
                                        shall be given by geographical
                                        coordinates.
NAURU                                  The territorial waters as defined
                                        by Nauru Interpretation Act,
                                        1971, Section 2.
NEW ZEALAND                            Territorial waters; waters within
                                        6 nautical miles of outer
                                        boundary of territorial waters;
                                        all waters to west of New
                                        Zealand main islands and south
                                        of 39 South latitude; all waters
                                        to east of New Zealand main
                                        islands south of 40 South
                                        latitude; and in respect of
                                        Tokelau: areas within 12
                                        nautical miles of all island and
                                        reef baselines; twelve and one
                                        half nautical miles either side
                                        of a line joining Atafu and
                                        Nukunonu and Faka'ofo; and
                                        coordinates as follows:
                                       Atafu: 83510" S,
                                        1722930" W
                                       Nukunonu: 90625" S,
                                        1715210" W 91130" S, 1714700" W
                                       Faka'ofo: 92230" S,
                                        1711630" W
NIUE                                   Territorial sea and within 3
                                        nautical miles of Beveridge
                                        Reef, Antiope Reef and Haran
                                        Reef as depicted by appropriate
                                        symbols on NZ 225F (chart
                                        showing the territorial sea and
                                        exclusive economic zone of Niue
                                        pursuant to the Niue Territorial
                                        Sea and Exclusive Economic Zone
                                        Act of 1978).
PALAU                                  Within 12 nautical miles of all
                                        island baselines in the Palau
                                        Islands; and the area:
                                       commencing at the north-
                                        easternmost intersection of the
                                        outer limit of the 12 nautical
                                        mile territorial sea of Palau by
                                        the arc of a circle having a
                                        radius of 50 nautical miles and
                                        its center at Latitude
                                        071634" North,
                                        longitude 1342825"
                                        East, being at about the center
                                        of the reef entrance to Malakal
                                        Pass; running thence generally
                                        south-easterly, southerly, south-
                                        westerly, westerly, north-
                                        westerly, northerly and north-
                                        easterly along that arc to its
                                        intersection by the outer limit
                                        of the 12 nautical mile
                                        territorial sea; and thence
                                        generally northerly, north-
                                        easterly, easterly, south-
                                        easterly and southerly along
                                        that outer limit to the point of
                                        commencement.
                                       Where for the purpose of these
                                        specifications it is necessary
                                        to determine the position on the
                                        surface of the Earth of a point,
                                        line or area, it shall be
                                        determined by reference to the
                                        World Geodetic System 1984; that
                                        is to say, by reference to a
                                        spheroid having its center at
                                        the center of the Earth and a
                                        major (equatorial) radius of
                                        6,378,137 meters and a
                                        flattening of 1/298.2572.
PAPUA NEW GUINEA                       All territorial seas,
                                        archipelagic and internal
                                        waters.
SOLOMON ISLANDS                        All internal waters, territorial
                                        seas and archipelagic waters;
                                        and such additional waters
                                        around the main group
                                        archipelago, as defined under
                                        the Delimitation of Marine
                                        Waters Act 1978, not exceeding
                                        sixty nautical miles.
TONGA                                  All waters with depths of not
                                        more than 1,000 meters, within
                                        the area bounded by the
                                        fifteenth and twenty third and
                                        one half degrees of south
                                        latitudes and the one hundred
                                        and seventy third and the one
                                        hundred and seventy seventh
                                        degrees of west longitudes; also
                                        within a radius of twelve
                                        nautical miles from the islands
                                        of Teleki Tonga and Teleki
                                        Tokelau.
TUVALU                                 Territorial sea and waters within
                                        two nautical miles of all named
                                        banks, that is Macaw, Kosciusko,
                                        Rose, Bayonnaise and Hera, in
                                        Tuvalu exclusive economic zone,
                                        as depicted on the chart
                                        entitled ``Tuvalu Fishery
                                        Limits'' prepared by the United
                                        Kingdom Hydrographic Department,
                                        Taunton, January 11, 1981.
VANUATU                                Archipelagic waters and the
                                        territorial sea, and internal
                                        waters.
SAMOA                                  Territorial sea; reefs, banks and
                                        sea-mounts and within 2 nautical
                                        miles of any anchored fish
                                        aggregating device within the
                                        Samoa exclusive economic zone
                                        for which notification of its
                                        location shall be given by
                                        geographical coordinates.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    FFA Vessel Register means the registry of fishing vessels maintained 
by the FFA, comprising those vessels which are in good standing and 
licensed to fish in the waters of FFA member countries, including those 
vessels licensed under Sec. 300.32.
    Fishing means searching for, catching, taking, or harvesting fish; 
attempting to search for, catch, take, or harvest fish; engaging in any 
other activity that can reasonably be expected to result in the 
locating, catching, taking, or harvesting of fish; placing, searching 
for, or recovering fish aggregating devices or associated electronic 
equipment such as radio beacons; any operations at sea directly in 
support of, or in preparation for, any activity described in this 
paragraph; or aircraft use, relating to the activities described in this 
definition, except for flights in

[[Page 166]]

emergencies involving the health or safety of crew members or the safety 
of a vessel.
    Fishing arrangement means an arrangement between a Pacific Island 
Party and the owner of a U.S. fishing vessel that complies with section 
6(b) of the Act.
    Fishing vessel or vessel means any boat, ship, or other craft that 
is used for, equipped to be used for, or of a type normally used for 
commercial fishing, and that is documented under the laws of the United 
States.
    Licensing Area means all waters in the Treaty Area except for:
    (1) Those waters subject to the jurisdiction of the United States in 
accordance with international law.
    (2) Those waters within closed areas.
    (3) Those waters within limited areas closed to fishing.
    Licensing period means the period of validity of licenses issued in 
accordance with the Treaty.
    Operator means any person who is in charge of, directs or controls a 
vessel, including the owner, charterer and master.
    Pacific Island Party means a Pacific island nation that is a party 
to the Treaty.
    Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency or FFA means the organization 
established by the 1979 South Pacific Forum Fisheries Agency Convention.
    Regional Administrator means the Regional Administrator, Pacific 
Islands Region, NMFS, 1845 Wasp Blvd., Bldg. 176, Honolulu, HI 96818, 
facsimile: 808-725-5215, or a designee.
    Transship means to unload any or all of the fish on board a licensed 
vessel either ashore or onto another vessel.
    Treaty Area means all waters north of 60 S. lat. and east of 90 E. 
long., subject to the fisheries jurisdiction of Pacific Island Parties, 
and all other waters within rhumb lines connecting the following points, 
except for waters subject to the jurisdiction in accordance with 
international law of a State which is not a party to the Treaty:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
       Point                Latitude                  Longitude
------------------------------------------------------------------------
A                    23539" S      1410000" E
B                    10135" N      1404835" E
C                    10135" N      1293000" E
D                    100000" N     1293000" E
E                    140000" N     1400000" E
F                    140000" N     1420000" E
G                    123000" N     1420000" E
H                    123000" N     1580000" E
I                    150000" N     1580000" E
J                    150000" N     1650000" E
K                    180000" N     1650000" E
L                    180000" N     1740000" E
M                    120000" N     1740000" E
N                    120000" N     1760000" E
O                    50000" N      1760000" E
P                    10000" N      1800000"
Q                    10000" N      1640000" W
R                    80000" N      1640000" W
S                    80000" N      1580000" W
T                    00000"        1500000" W
U                    60000" S      1500000" W
V                    60000" S      1460000" W
W                    120000" S     1460000" W
X                    260000" S     1570000" W
Y                    260000" S     1740000" W
Z                    400000" S     1740000" W
AA                   400000" S     1710000" W
AB                   460000" S     1710000" W
AC                   550000" S     1800000"
AD                   590000" S     1600000" E
AE                   590000" S     1520000" E and
                                             north along the 152 degrees
                                             of East longitude until
                                             intersecting the Australian
                                             200-nautical-mile limit.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    UTC means Universal Coordinated Time.
    Vessel Monitoring System Unit or VMS unit, sometimes known as a 
``mobile transmitting unit,'' means Administrator-approved and NMFS-
approved VMS unit hardware and software that is installed on a vessel 
pursuant to Sec. 300.45. The VMS units are a component of the regional 
vessel monitoring system administered by the FFA, as well as of the 
vessel monitoring system administered by NMFS, and as such are used to 
transmit information between the vessel and the Administrator and NMFS 
and/or other reporting points designated by NMFS.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 72 FR 6149, Feb. 9, 2007; 75 
FR 74643, Dec. 1, 2010; 79 FR 64110, Oct. 28, 2014]



Sec. 300.32  Vessel licenses.

    (a) Each vessel fishing in the Licensing Area must have a license 
issued by the Administrator for the licensing period being fished, 
unless exempted by Sec. 300.39. Each licensing period begins on June 15 
and ends on June 14 of the following year.

[[Page 167]]

    (b) Upon receipt, the license or a copy or facsimile thereof must be 
carried on board the vessel when in the Licensing Area or Closed Areas, 
and must be produced at the request of authorized officers, authorized 
party officers, or authorized inspectors. A vessel may be used to fish 
in the Licensing Area if the license has been issued but not yet 
received, provided that the license number is available on board.
    (c) The total number of licenses that may be issued and valid at any 
point in time is 45, five of which shall be reserved for fishing vessels 
of the United States engaged in joint venture arrangements.
    (1) For the purpose of this section, the licenses reserved for 
vessels engaged in joint venture arrangements are referred to as ``joint 
venture licenses,'' and the remaining licenses are referred to as 
``general licenses.''
    (2) A joint venture arrangement is one in which the subject vessel 
and its operators are engaged in fishing-related activities designed to 
maximize the benefits generated for the Pacific Island Parties from the 
operations of fishing vessels licensed pursuant to the Treaty, as 
determined by the Administrator. Such activities can include the use of 
canning, transshipment, vessel slipping and repair facilities located in 
the Pacific Island Parties; the purchase of equipment and supplies, 
including fuel supplies, from suppliers located in the Pacific Island 
Parties; and the employment of nationals of the Pacific Island Parties 
on board such vessels.
    (d) Licenses are issued by the Administrator. The Administrator will 
issue licenses only for applications that have been approved by the 
Regional Administrator. The Regional Administrator's approval is 
indicated by the signature of the Regional Administrator on the part of 
the application form labeled ``Schedule 1.'' Upon approval by the 
Regional Administrator of a license application, the complete 
application will be forwarded to the Administrator for consideration. 
Except as provided in paragraph (n) of this section, prior to approving 
license applications for a given licensing period, the Regional 
Administrator will issue pre-approvals of license applications that 
serve the purpose of temporarily reserving approvals up until the time 
complete applications are due to be received by the Regional 
Administrator.
    (e) The Regional Administrator, in his or her sole discretion, may 
approve fewer license applications than there are licenses available for 
any given licensing period or at any given time.
    (f) A pre-approval or approval issued by the Regional Administrator 
pursuant to this section:
    (1) Shall not confer any right of compensation to the recipient of 
such pre-approval or approval;
    (2) Shall not create, or be construed to create, any right, title, 
or interest in or to a license or any fish; and
    (3) Shall be considered a grant of permission to the recipient of 
the pre-approval or approval to proceed with the process of seeking a 
license from the Administrator.
    (g) A pre-approval or approval issued by the Regional Administrator 
pursuant to this section is subject to being rescinded at any time if 
the Regional Administrator determines that an administrative error has 
been made in its granting, false information has been provided by the 
applicant, circumstances have changed such that the information provided 
by the applicant is no longer accurate, true or valid, or if the 
applicant or vessel no longer meets the requirements for licensing under 
this subpart or under the Act or other applicable law. NMFS will notify 
the applicant of its rescission of a pre-approval or approval within 14 
days of the rescission. In the event that the Regional Administrator 
rescinds an approval after the license has been issued, NMFS will notify 
the Administrator of such, and request that the Administrator 
immediately revoke the license.
    (h) Application process for general licenses. (1) A vessel operator 
who satisfies the requirements for licensing under the Act and under 
this subpart may apply for a general license.
    (2) In order for a general license to be issued for a vessel, an 
applicant must submit a complete application to, and obtain an 
application approval from, the Regional Administrator.
    (3) Except for the 2011-2012 licensing period, prior to submitting a 
complete application, an applicant may request

[[Page 168]]

pre-approval of an application by the Regional Administrator by 
submitting an expression of interest. A pre-approval of an application 
establishes that the applicant is eligible to be considered for one of 
the available licenses following timely submission of a complete 
application. Although submission of an expression of interest is 
entirely voluntary, applications that have not been pre-approved might 
not be eligible for approval if the number of applications exceeds the 
number of available licenses for a given licensing period. A pre-
approval will be deemed to be void if the applicant fails to submit a 
complete application by the date established in paragraph (h)(6) of this 
section.
    (4) Except as provided in paragraph (n) of this section, in order to 
obtain a pre-approval for a given licensing period, either an expression 
of interest or a complete application must be submitted to and received 
by the Regional Administrator no later than June 1st of the year 
preceding the year in which the licensing period begins.
    (5) An expression of interest must include the information listed 
below, which may be submitted by electronic or hard-copy correspondence 
following instructions provided by the Regional Administrator.
    (i) If the expression of interest is for a vessel for which, as of 
the June 1st due date for submitting such expression of interest, NMFS 
has issued an application approval for the licensing period that starts 
that year (i.e., a renewal of the license is being sought), the 
expression of interest shall include:
    (A) The licensing period for which the license is being sought.
    (B) The current name, IRCS, and annual USCG Certificate of 
Documentation number of the vessel.
    (ii) For all other expressions of interest that do not meet the 
criteria in paragraph (h)(5)(i) of this section, the expression of 
interest shall include:
    (A) The licensing period for which the license is being sought.
    (B) The full name and address of each person who is, or who is 
anticipated to be, an operator of the vessel for which a license is 
sought, and for each such person, a statement of whether the person is, 
or is anticipated to be, owner, charterer, and/or master of the vessel.
    (C) A statement of whether or not the vessel to be licensed is 
known, and if it is known, the current name, IRCS, and annual USCG 
Certificate of Documentation number, if any, of the vessel.
    (D) A copy of the vessel's current USCG Certificate of 
Documentation. If the vessel has not been issued such a document, then a 
statement of whether application has been or will be made for a USCG 
Certificate of Documentation, including identification of all 
endorsements sought in such application.
    (E) If the vessel is known, a list of the licensing periods, if any, 
during which a license for the vessel was issued under this section.
    (F) If the vessel is known, a statement of the total amount, in 
metric tons, of any tuna species landed or transshipped from the vessel 
at United States ports, including ports located in any of the States, 
for each of the calendar years 1988 through the current year.
    (6) A complete application for a given licensing period may be 
submitted to the Regional Administrator at any time up to May 15th 
within the licensing period, but in order to be considered for approval 
in the event that more applications are received by the Regional 
Administrator than there are licenses available, a complete application 
must be received by the Regional Administrator as follows:
    (i) No later than February 5th of the year in which the licensing 
period begins; or
    (ii) If a pre-approval of the application was issued in accordance 
with paragraphs (k)(8) or (k)(9) of this section, not later than the 
date specified by NMFS in the notification of such pre-approval (which 
will be calculated by NMFS to be no later than 194 days from the date of 
mailing of the notification of the pre-approval).
    (7) License application forms, which include the ``Schedule 1'' form 
and the FFA Vessel Register application form, are available from the 
Regional Administrator. The complete application must be received by the 
Regional Administrator as specified in paragraph (h)(6) of this section. 
An application

[[Page 169]]

shall not be complete, and shall not be subject to processing, unless it 
contains all of the information specified on the ``Schedule 1'' form and 
all the items listed in paragraphs (h)(7)(i) through (h)(7)(x) of this 
section, as follows:
    (i) The licensing period for which the license is requested.
    (ii) The name of an agent, located in Port Moresby, Papua New 
Guinea, who, on behalf of the license holder, will receive and respond 
to any legal process issued in accordance with the Treaty.
    (iii) Documentation from an insurance company showing that the 
vessel will be fully insured for the licensing period against all risks 
and liabilities normally covered by maritime liability insurance.
    (iv) If the owner or charterer is the subject of proceedings under 
the bankruptcy laws of the United States, a statement that the owner or 
charterer will be financially able to fulfill any and all 
responsibilities under the Treaty, Act, and regulations, including the 
payment of any penalties or fines.
    (v) A copy of the vessel's current annual USCG Certificate of 
Documentation.
    (vi) Electronic versions of full color photographs of the vessel in 
its current form and appearance, including a bow-to-stern side-view 
photograph of the vessel that clearly and legibly shows the vessel 
markings, and a photograph of every area of the vessel that is marked 
with the IRCS assigned to the vessel.
    (vii) A schematic stowage/well plan for the vessel.
    (viii) A copy of the VMS unit installation certificate, issued by 
the Administrator-authorized person who installed the VMS unit, for the 
VMS unit installed on the vessel in accordance with Sec. 300.45.
    (ix) An FFA Vessel Register application form that includes all the 
applicable information specified in the form.
    (x) In the case of an application for a vessel that does not meet 
the criteria in paragraph (h)(5)(i) of this section, any information 
under paragraph (h)(5)(ii) of this section that has not already been 
provided or that has changed since it was previously submitted.
    (i) Application process for joint venture licenses. (1) A vessel 
operator who satisfies the requirements for licensing under the Act and 
under this subpart may apply for a joint venture license.
    (2) The applicant, in coordination with one or more Pacific Island 
Parties, shall contact the Administrator to determine the specific 
information and documents that are required by the Administrator in 
order to obtain an initial approval from the Administrator for a joint 
venture license. The applicant shall submit such required information 
and documents directly to the Administrator. Once an initial approval is 
obtained from the Administrator, the applicant shall submit a complete 
application package, as described in paragraph (h)(7) of this section, 
to the Regional Administrator, along with dated documentation of the 
Administrator's initial approval, and a letter or other documentation 
from the relevant national authority or authorities of the Pacific 
Island Party or Parties identifying the joint venture partner or 
partners and indicating the Party's or Parties' approval of the joint 
venture arrangement and its or their concurrence that a joint venture 
license may be issued for the vessel.
    (j) Appeals--(1) Eligibility. Any applicant who is denied a pre-
approval or an approval under this section may appeal the denial. The 
appeal must be made in writing and must clearly state the basis for the 
appeal and the nature of the relief that is requested. The appeal must 
be received by the Regional Administrator not later than 14 days after 
the date that the notice of denial is postmarked.
    (2) Appeal review. Upon receipt of an appeal, the Regional 
Administrator will appoint a designee who will review the basis of the 
appeal and issue an initial written decision. The written decision will 
be mailed to the applicant within 30 days of receipt of the appeal. If 
the appellant does not request a review within 10 days of mailing of the 
initial decision, the initial decision is the final administrative 
action of the Department of Commerce. If, within 10 days of mailing of 
the initial decision, the Regional Administrator receives from the 
appellant a written request for review of the initial decision, the

[[Page 170]]

Assistant Administrator or a designee will review the basis of the 
appeal and issue a final written decision. The final decision will be 
made within 30 days of receipt of the request for review of the initial 
decision. The decision of the Assistant Administrator or designee 
constitutes the final administrative action of the Department of 
Commerce.
    (k) Procedures used by the Secretary to review and process 
applications for general licenses. The procedures in this paragraph 
apply to the process used by NMFS, on behalf of the Secretary and in 
consultation with the Secretary of State, to review expressions of 
interest and complete applications, and to approve applications. For the 
purpose of this section, NMFS' approval of an application means the 
signing by the Regional Administrator of the ``Schedule 1'' part of the 
application form, indicating that the application is complete and that 
it meets the requirements of the Act and of this subpart for forwarding 
to the Administrator. For the purpose of this section, NMFS' pre-
approval of an application means that the Regional Administrator has 
initially determined that the applicant is eligible for a general 
license, but that the application has not yet been approved for 
forwarding to the Administrator.
    (1) NMFS will pre-approve no more applications for a given licensing 
period than there are licenses available for that licensing period. A 
pre-approval will be deemed to be void if the applicant fails to submit 
a complete application by the date established in paragraph (h)(6) of 
this section.
    (2) NMFS will approve no more applications for a given licensing 
period than there are licenses available for that licensing period.
    (3) NMFS will not approve a license application if it determines 
that:
    (i) The application is not in accord with the Treaty, Act, or 
regulations;
    (ii) The owner or charterer is the subject of proceedings under the 
bankruptcy laws of the United States, and reasonable financial 
assurances have not been provided to the Secretary that the owner or 
charterer will be financially able to fulfill any and all 
responsibilities under the Treaty, Act, and regulations, including the 
payment of any penalties or fines;
    (iii) The owner or charterer has not established to the satisfaction 
of the Secretary that the vessel will be fully insured for the licensing 
period against all risks and liabilities normally covered by maritime 
liability insurance; or
    (iv) The owner or charterer has not paid any final penalty assessed 
by the Secretary in accordance with the Act.
    (4) Except as provided in paragraph (n) of this section, no later 
than July 16th of each year, NMFS will pre-approve applications from 
among the expressions of interest and complete applications that were 
received by June 1st of the current year for the licensing period that 
starts the following year as provided in this paragraph. If the number 
of expressions of interest and complete applications does not exceed the 
number of licenses available, all applications that meet the 
requirements of paragraphs (h)(4) and (h)(5) of this section and that 
satisfy the relevant requirements for licensing under the Act and this 
subpart will be pre-approved. If the number of expressions of interest 
and complete applications exceeds the number of licenses available, 
those that meet the requirements of paragraphs (h)(4) and (h)(5) of this 
section and that satisfy the relevant requirements for licensing under 
the Act and this subpart will be prioritized for pre-approval as 
follows:
    (i) First priority will be given to expressions of interest and 
complete applications for vessels for which, as of June 1st of that 
year, application approvals have been issued by NMFS for the licensing 
period that starts that year (i.e., anticipated license renewal 
applications), provided that such vessels continue to satisfy the 
requirements for licensing under the Act and this subpart, and provided 
such vessels have no unsatisfied civil penalties or fines assessed by 
the Secretary under the Act that have become final.
    (ii) Second priority will be given to expressions of interest and 
complete applications scored using the following system, in descending 
order of the sum of the points assigned:
    (A) 15 points will be assigned for a vessel that has been issued, or 
will be

[[Page 171]]

issued by the date complete applications are due to be received by the 
Regional Administrator under paragraph (h)(6) of this section, a valid 
USCG Certificate of Documentation with a fishery endorsement.
    (B) 1 point will be assigned for each licensing period, starting 
with the 1988-1989 licensing period, in which a license had been issued 
for the vessel pursuant to the Act, for a total of no more than 10 
points.
    (C) 1 point will be assigned for each calendar year in which at 
least 3,000 metric tons of fish were landed or transshipped from the 
vessel in United States ports, including ports located in any of the 
States, as determined by the Regional Administrator. The applicable 
period shall run from 1988 through the last calendar year prior to the 
year in which the applied-for licensing period starts, and the total 
number of points assigned shall be no more than 5.
    (D) In the event that two or more vessels receive the same sum 
number of points under paragraphs (k)(4)(ii)(A) through (k)(4)(ii)(C) of 
this section, priority will be given to the vessel from which the 
greatest amount of fish, by weight, was landed or transshipped in United 
States ports, including ports located in any of the States, starting in 
calendar year 1988 and ending in the year prior to the year in which the 
applied-for licensing period starts, as determined by the Regional 
Administrator. In the event that that does not resolve the tie, priority 
will be given by lottery, which will be conducted by the Regional 
Administrator.
    (5) Except as provided in paragraph (n) of this section, no later 
than July 26th of each year, NMFS will send notifications by mail to all 
applicants that submitted expressions of interest or complete 
applications by June 1st of that year, indicating whether their 
applications (for the licensing period that starts the following year) 
have been pre-approved.
    (6) No later than March 7th of each year, NMFS will approve 
applications (for the licensing period that starts that year) that 
satisfy all of the following conditions:
    (i) The application was pre-approved;
    (ii) The information associated with the application has not changed 
since the point of pre-approval in a way such that pre-approval would 
not have been made using the updated information;
    (iii) The complete application was received by February 5th of the 
same year; and
    (iv) The applicant satisfies the requirements for licensing under 
the Act and this subpart.
    (7) No later than March 17th of each year, NMFS will notify all 
applicants (for the licensing period that starts that year) who 
submitted complete applications by February 5th of that year, whether 
their applications have been approved under paragraph (k)(6) of this 
section, and in cases where they have not, whether their applications 
are being considered for approval under paragraph (k)(8) of this 
section.
    (8) In the event that additional licenses for a given licensing 
period are available after issuing the approvals under paragraph (k)(6) 
of this section, NMFS will, after final administrative action by the 
Department of Commerce on any appeals made under paragraph (j) of this 
section, do the following:
    (i) If the number of outstanding expressions of interest (i.e., 
expressions of interest that have not been pre-approved) received by 
June 1st of the year preceding the year in which the licensing period 
begins, plus the number of outstanding complete applications (i.e., 
complete applications that have not been approved) received by February 
5th of the year in which the licensing period begins, exceeds the number 
of licenses available, NMFS will review all such outstanding expressions 
of interest and complete applications and apply the process described in 
paragraphs (k)(9)(i)(A) through (k)(9)(i)(C) of this section to pre-
approve and approve applications from among that pool of applicants;
    (ii) If the number of outstanding expressions of interest received 
by June 1st of the year preceding the year in which the licensing period 
begins, plus the number of outstanding complete applications received by 
February 5th of the year in which the licensing period begins, does not 
exceed the number of licenses available:

[[Page 172]]

    (A) No later than June 15th of the year in which the licensing 
period begins, NMFS will pre-approve all such outstanding expressions of 
interest and complete applications that satisfy the relevant 
requirements for licensing under the Act and this subpart;
    (B) No later than June 25th of the year in which the licensing 
period begins, NMFS will notify all such outstanding applicants of the 
pre-approvals, and for those applicants that submitted expressions of 
interest but not complete applications, also notify them of the date by 
which a complete application must be received in order to be issued an 
application approval (which will be calculated by NMFS to be no later 
than 194 days from the date of mailing of the notification of the pre-
approval);
    (C) NMFS will review all complete applications received by the 
required date from applicants pre-approved under paragraph (8)(ii)(A) of 
this section, and within 30 days of such receipt, approve the 
application, if and as appropriate and if the applicant satisfies the 
requirements for licensing under the Act and this subpart; and
    (D) If and as long as the number of approvals plus outstanding (not 
voided) pre-approvals does not exceed the total number of licenses 
available under paragraph (c) of this section, NMFS will review all 
complete applications received after February 5th of the year in which 
the licensing period begins and before May 16th within the licensing 
period and, as they are received and in the order they are received 
(based on the day of receipt), will approve those applications that 
satisfy the requirements for licensing under the Act and this subpart 
until no more approvals are available. In the event that two or more 
complete applications are received on the same day, priority for 
approval will be given by lottery, which will be conducted by the 
Regional Administrator.
    (iii) Within 10 days of approving an application, NMFS will notify 
the applicant.
    (9) If a license or application approval that has been issued for a 
given licensing period becomes available before or during that licensing 
period, NMFS will do the following:
    (i) If there are any outstanding expressions of interest received by 
June 1st of the year preceding the year in which the licensing period 
begins or outstanding complete applications received by February 5th of 
the year in which the licensing period begins, NMFS will review all such 
outstanding expressions of interest and complete applications and pre-
approve and approve applications for that license from among that pool 
as follows:
    (A) Within 45 days of NMFS becoming aware of the availability of the 
license, NMFS will pre-approve an application using the prioritization 
criteria and point-assigning system described in paragraphs (k)(4)(i) 
and (k)(4)(ii) of this section;
    (B) Within 55 days of NMFS becoming aware of the availability of the 
license NMFS will notify all active applicants as to whether their 
applications have been pre-approved, and for those applications that 
have been pre-approved, notify each applicant of the date by which a 
complete application, if not already received, must be received (which 
will be calculated by NMFS to be no later than 194 days from the date of 
mailing of the notification of the pre-approval); and
    (C) Within 30 days of receiving a complete application that had been 
pre-approved, NMFS will approve the application, if and as appropriate 
and if the applicant satisfies the requirements of this subpart.
    (ii) If there are no outstanding expressions of interest received by 
June 1st of the year preceding the year in which the licensing period 
begins and no outstanding complete applications received by February 5th 
of the year in which the licensing period begins, if and as long as the 
number of approvals plus outstanding (not voided) pre-approvals does not 
exceed the number of licenses available, NMFS will review all complete 
applications received after February 5th of the year in which the 
licensing period begins and before May 16th within the licensing period 
and, in the order they are received (based on the day of receipt), will 
approve those applications that satisfy the requirements for licensing 
under the Act and this subpart until no more approvals are available. In 
the event that two or

[[Page 173]]

more complete applications are received on the same day, priority for 
approval will be given by lottery, which will be conducted by the 
Regional Administrator.
    (iii) Within 10 days of approving an application, NMFS will notify 
the applicant.
    (l) Procedures used by the Secretary to review and process 
applications for joint venture licenses. NMFS, on behalf of the 
Secretary and in consultation with the Secretary of State, will review 
and approve applications for joint venture licenses as described in 
paragraph (k) of this section for general licenses, except that NMFS 
will not consider expressions of interest for joint venture licenses or 
pre-approve applications for joint venture licenses. In the event that 
NMFS receives for a given licensing period more applications for joint 
venture licenses than there are licenses available, it will approve the 
applications in the chronological order that the Administrator has 
provided its initial approval.
    (m) Transferability of application approvals. Application approvals 
from NMFS are not transferable among vessel owners or operators or 
license applicants. Application approvals are transferable among 
vessels, subject to the following requirements:
    (1) A vessel operator may seek to transfer a general or joint 
venture license to another vessel that meets the requirements for 
licensing under this subpart and the Act, only if the license has been 
valid for the vessel for at least 365 consecutive days and all the fees 
required by the Administrator for the current licensing period have been 
paid to the Administrator. The vessel operator may seek to transfer the 
license by submitting a written request to the Regional Administrator 
along with a complete application for the other vessel as described in 
paragraph (h)(7) of this section. Any such transfer may be subject to 
additional fees for the registration of the vessel on the FFA Vessel 
Register, as specified in paragraph (b) of Sec. 300.45.
    (2) Upon receipt of a request and complete application under 
paragraph (m)(1) of this section, the Regional Administrator, after 
determining that all the fees required for the vessel by the 
Administrator for the current licensing period have been paid, that the 
ownership of the licensed vessel and the ownership of the vessel to 
which the application approval would be transferred are identical, and 
that the transferee vessel meets the requirements for licensing under 
this subpart and the Act, will approve the application and notify the 
applicant of such within 10 days of the determination.
    (3) If a licensed vessel is lost or destroyed, and the operators of 
the vessel apply for a license for another vessel for the licensing 
period during which the vessel was lost, or for either of the two 
subsequent licensing periods, NMFS will consider the replacement vessel 
to have the license application approval status and history of the lost 
or destroyed vessel for the purpose of applying the prioritization 
criteria of paragraph (k)(4) of this section, provided that the 
ownership of the lost or destroyed vessel and the ownership of the 
replacement vessel, as determined by the Regional Administrator, are 
identical, and the replacement vessel meets the requirements for 
licensing under this subpart and the Act.
    (n) Procedures for 2011-2012 licensing period. For the licensing 
period that starts June 15, 2011, and for that licensing period only, 
pre-approvals may not be sought and will not be issued by NMFS. NMFS 
will rank order those applications received by February 5, 2011, for the 
2011-2012 licensing period by applying the criteria in paragraphs 
(k)(4)(i) and (k)(4)(ii) of this section, except that in lieu of using 
the criteria in (k)(4)(i), first priority will be given to applications 
for vessels that as of February 5, 2011, have valid licenses for the 
2010-2011 licensing period.

[75 FR 74644, Dec. 1, 2010]



Sec. 300.33  Compliance with applicable national laws.

    The operator of the vessel shall comply with each of the applicable 
national laws, and the operator of the vessel shall be responsible for 
the compliance by the vessel and its crew with each of the applicable 
national laws, and the vessel shall be operated in accordance with those 
laws.

[[Page 174]]



Sec. 300.34  Reporting requirements.

    (a) Holders of licenses issued under Sec. 300.32 shall comply with 
the reporting requirements of this section with respect to the licensed 
vessels.
    (b) Any information required to be recorded, or to be notified, 
communicated or reported pursuant to a requirement of these regulations, 
the Act, or the Treaty shall be true, complete and correct. Any change 
in circumstances that has the effect of rendering any of the information 
provided false, incomplete or misleading shall be communicated 
immediately to the Regional Administrator.
    (c) The operator of any vessel licensed under Sec. 300.32 must 
prepare and submit accurate, complete, and timely notifications, 
requests, and reports with respect to the licensed vessel, as described 
in paragraphs (c)(1) through (10) of this section.
    (1) Catch report forms. A record of catch, effort and other 
information must be maintained on board the vessel, on catch report 
forms (also known as ``Regional Purse Seine Logsheets'', or RPLs) 
provided by the Regional Administrator. At the end of each day that the 
vessel is in the Licensing Area, all information specified on the form 
must, for that day, be recorded on the form. The completed catch report 
form must be mailed by registered airmail to the Administrator within 14 
days of the vessel's next entry into port for the purpose of unloading 
its fish catch. A copy of the completed catch report form must also be 
submitted to, and received by, the Regional Administrator within 2 days 
of the vessel reaching port.
    (2) Unloading and transshipment logsheet forms. At the completion of 
any unloading or transshipment of fish from the vessel, all the 
information specified on unloading and transshipment logsheet forms 
provided by the Regional Administrator must, for that unloading or 
transshipment, be recorded on such forms. A separate form must be 
completed for each fish processing destination to which the unloaded or 
transshipped fish are bound. The completed unloading and transshipment 
logsheet form or forms must be mailed by registered airmail to the 
Administrator within 14 days of the completion of the unloading or 
transshipment. The submitted form must be accompanied by a report or 
reports of the size breakdown of the catch as determined by the receiver 
or receivers of the fish, and such report must be signed by the receiver 
or receivers. A copy of the completed unloading and transshipment 
logsheet, including a copy of the accompanying report or reports of the 
size breakdown of the catch as determined by the receiver or receivers 
of the fish, must also be submitted to, and received by, the Regional 
Administrator within 2 days of the completion of the unloading or 
transshipment.
    (3) Port departure reports. Before the vessel's departure from port 
for the purpose of beginning a fishing trip in the Licensing Area, a 
report must be submitted to the Administrator by telex, transmission via 
VMS unit, facsimile, or e-mail that includes the following information: 
Report type (``LBEG''); Regional Register number; trip begin date; date 
and time (in UTC) of report; IRCS; port name; weight of catch on board 
(in metric tons) for each of skipjack tuna, yellowfin tuna, and all 
other species combined; intended action; and estimated date of 
departure. This information must be reported in the format provided by 
the Regional Administrator.
    (4) Entry into port for unloading reports. At least 24 hours before 
the vessel's entry into port for the purpose of unloading fish from any 
trip involving fishing within the Licensing Area, a report must be 
submitted to the Administrator by telex, transmission via VMS unit, 
facsimile, or e-mail that includes the following information: Report 
type (``LFIN''); FFA Regional Register number; trip begin date; date and 
time (in UTC) of report; IRCS; port name; weight of catch on board (in 
metric tons) for each of skipjack tuna, yellowfin tuna, and all other 
species combined; intended action; and estimated date and time (in UTC) 
of entry into port. This information must be reported in the format 
provided by the Regional Administrator.
    (5) Intent to transship notification and request. At least 48 hours 
before transshipping any or all of the fish on board

[[Page 175]]

the vessel, a notification must be submitted to the Administrator and a 
request must be submitted to the Pacific Island Party in whose 
jurisdiction the transshipment is requested to occur. The notification 
to the Administrator and the request to the Pacific Island Party may be 
identical. The notification and request must include the following 
information: Name of vessel; IRCS; vessel position (latitude and 
longitude to nearest minute of arc); weight of catch on board the vessel 
(in metric tons) for each of skipjack tuna, yellowfin tuna, and all 
other species combined; and the date, time (in UTC), and location where 
such transshipment is requested to occur. The notification to the 
Administrator must be reported in the format provided by the Regional 
Administrator and submitted by telex, transmission by VMS unit, 
facsimile, or e-mail. The request to the Pacific Island Party must be 
reported in the format provided by the Regional Administrator and sent 
via the means and to the address provided by the Regional Administrator.
    (6) Zone entry and exit reports. Each time the vessel enters or 
exits the waters under the jurisdiction of a Pacific Island Party, a 
report must be submitted to that Pacific Island Party that includes the 
following information: Report type (``ZENT'' for entry or ``ZEXT'' for 
exit); FFA Regional Register number; trip begin date; date and time (in 
UTC) of the entry or exit; IRCS; vessel position (latitude and longitude 
to nearest minute of arc); weight of catch on board (in metric tons) for 
each of skipjack tuna, yellowfin tuna, and all other species combined; 
and intended action. This information must be reported in the format 
provided by the Regional Administrator and sent via the means and to the 
address provided by the Regional Administrator.
    (7) Weekly reports. Each Wednesday while the vessel is within the 
waters under the jurisdiction of a Pacific Island Party, a report must 
be submitted to that Pacific Island Party that includes the following 
information: Report type (``WEEK''); FFA Regional Register number; trip 
begin date; date and time (in UTC) of report; IRCS; vessel position 
(latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc); weight of catch on 
board (in metric tons) for each of skipjack tuna, yellowfin tuna, and 
all other species combined; intended action; and whether or not there is 
a vessel observer on board (``Y'' or ``N''). This information must be 
reported in the format provided by the Regional Administrator and sent 
via the means and to the address provided by the Regional Administrator.
    (8) Port entry reports. At least 24 hours before the vessel's entry 
into port of any Pacific Island Party, a report must be submitted to 
that Pacific Island Party that includes the following information: 
Report type (``PENT''); FFA Regional Register number; trip begin date; 
date and time (in UTC) of report; IRCS; vessel position (latitude and 
longitude to nearest minute of arc); weight of catch on board (in metric 
tons) for each of skipjack tuna, yellowfin tuna, and all other species 
combined; estimated time (in UTC) of entry into port; port name; and 
intended action. This information must be reported in the format 
provided by the Regional Administrator and sent via the means and to the 
address provided by the Regional Administrator.
    (9) Transshipment reports. Upon completion of transshipment of any 
or all of the fish on board the vessel, a report must be submitted to 
the Administrator and to the Pacific Island Party in whose jurisdiction 
the transshipment occurred. The report must include the following 
information: Report type (``TRANS''); FFA Regional Register number; trip 
begin date; date and time (in UTC) of the transshipment; IRCS; vessel 
position at time of transshipment (latitude and longitude to nearest 
minute of arc); amount of fish transshipped (in metric tons) for each of 
skipjack tuna, yellowfin tuna, and all other species combined; name of 
vessel to which the fish were transshipped; and the destination of the 
transshipped fish. The report to the Administrator must be reported in 
the format provided by the Regional Administrator and submitted by 
telex, transmission by VMS unit, facsimile, or e-mail. The report to the 
Pacific Island Party must be reported in the format provided by the 
Regional Administrator and sent via the means and to

[[Page 176]]

the address provided by the Regional Administrator.
    (10) Other reports and notifications to Pacific Island Parties. 
Reports and notifications must be submitted to the relevant Pacific 
Island Parties in each of the circumstances and in the manner described 
in the subparagraphs of this paragraph. Unless otherwise indicated in 
this paragraph, the reports must be prepared in the format provided by 
the Regional Administrator and sent via the means and to the address 
provided by the Regional Administrator.
    (i) Australia. (A) Each day while the vessel is within the 
Australian Fishing Zone, a report must be submitted that includes the 
following information: Vessel position (latitude and longitude to 
nearest minute of arc); and the amount of catch made during the previous 
day, by species.
    (B) At least 24 hours before entering the Australian Fishing Zone, a 
notification must be submitted that indicates an intent to enter the 
Australian Fishing Zone.
    (ii) Fiji. (A) Each day while the vessel is in Fiji fisheries 
waters, a report must be submitted that includes the following 
information: vessel name; IRCS; country of registration of the vessel; 
and vessel position at the time of the report (latitude and longitude to 
nearest minute of arc).
    (B) Each week while the vessel is in Fiji fisheries waters, a report 
must be submitted that includes the amount of the catch made during the 
preceding week, by species.
    (iii) Kiribati. (A) At least 24 hours before entering a Closed Area 
under the jurisdiction of Kiribati, a notification must be submitted 
that includes the following information: vessel name; IRCS; vessel 
position at the time of the report (latitude and longitude to nearest 
minute of arc); the reason for entering the Closed Area; and the 
estimated time (in UTC) of entry into the Closed Area (latitude and 
longitude to nearest minute of arc).
    (B) Immediately upon entry into or exit from a Closed Area under the 
jurisdiction of Kiribati, a report must be submitted that includes the 
following information: report type (``CAENT'' for entry or ``CAEXT'' for 
exit); the number of the vessel's license issued under Sec. 300.32; 
IRCS; date and time (in UTC) of the report; vessel position (latitude 
and longitude to nearest minute of arc); amount of the catch on board 
the vessel, by species; and status of the boom (``up'' or ``down''), net 
(``deployed'' or ``stowed''), and skiff (``deployed'' or ``stowed'').
    (C) At least 24 hours prior to fueling the vessel from a tanker in 
the area of jurisdiction of Kiribati, a report must be submitted that 
includes the following information: report type (``SBUNK''); the number 
of the vessel's license issued under Sec. 300.32; IRCS; trip start date; 
name of port from which trip started; amount of the catch on board the 
vessel, by species; estimated time of bunkering; estimated position of 
bunkering (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc); and name of 
tanker.
    (D) After fueling the vessel from a tanker in the area of 
jurisdiction of Kiribati, but no later than 12 noon local time on the 
following day, a report must be submitted that includes the following 
information: report type (``FBUNK''); the number of the vessel's license 
issued under Sec. 300.32; IRCS; start time of bunkering; end time of 
bunkering; amount of fuel received, in kiloliters; and name of tanker.
    (iv) New Zealand. (A) At least 24 hours before entering the 
exclusive economic zone of New Zealand, a notification must be submitted 
that includes the following information: name of vessel; IRCS; position 
of point of entry into the exclusive economic zone of New Zealand 
(latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc); amount of catch on 
board the vessel, by species; and condition of the catch on board the 
vessel (``fresh'' or ``frozen'').
    (B) For each day that the vessel is in the exclusive economic zone 
of New Zealand, a notification must be submitted no later than noon of 
the following day of the vessel's position (latitude and longitude to 
nearest minute of arc) at noon.
    (C) For each week or portion thereof that the vessel is in the 
exclusive economic zone of New Zealand, a report that covers the period 
from 12:01 a.m. on Monday to 12 midnight on the following Sunday must be 
submitted and received by noon of the following

[[Page 177]]

Wednesday (local time). The report must include the amount of the catch 
taken in the exclusive economic zone of New Zealand during the reporting 
period.
    (D) At least 10 days prior to an intended transshipment in an area 
under the jurisdiction of New Zealand, a notification must be submitted 
that includes the intended port, date, and time of transshipment.
    (E) At least 24 hours prior to exiting the exclusive economic zone 
of New Zealand, a notification must be submitted that includes the 
following information: position of the intended point of exit (latitude 
and longitude to nearest minute of arc); the amount of catch on board 
the vessel, by species; and condition of the catch on board the vessel 
(``fresh'' or ``frozen'').
    (v) Solomon Islands. (A) At least 24 hours prior to entry into 
Solomon Islands Fisheries Limits, a report must be submitted that 
includes the following information: expected vessel position (latitude 
and longitude to nearest minute of arc) and expected date and time of 
entry.
    (B) For each week or portion thereof that the vessel is in the 
exclusive economic zone of Solomon Islands, a report that covers the 
period from 12:01 a.m. on Monday to 12 midnight on the following Sunday 
must be submitted and received by noon of the following Tuesday (local 
time). The report must include the amount of the catch taken and the 
number of fishing days spent in the exclusive economic zone of Solomon 
Islands during the reporting period.
    (vi) Tonga. (A) Each day while the vessel is in the exclusive 
economic zone of Tonga, a report must be submitted that includes the 
vessel's position (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc).
    (B) [Reserved]
    (vii) Tuvalu. (A) At least 24 hours prior to entering Tuvalu fishery 
limits, a report must be submitted that includes the following 
information: vessel name; IRCS; country of registration of the vessel; 
the number of the vessel's license issued under Sec. 300.32; intended 
vessel position (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc) at 
entry; and amount of catch on board the vessel, by species.
    (B) Every seventh day that the vessel is in Tuvalu fishery limits, a 
report must be submitted that includes vessel position (latitude and 
longitude to nearest minute of arc) and the total amount of catch on 
board the vessel.
    (C) Immediately upon exit from Tuvalu fishery limits, a notification 
must be submitted that includes vessel position (latitude and longitude 
to nearest minute of arc) and the total amount of catch on board the 
vessel.

[72 FR 6151, Feb. 9, 2007]



Sec. 300.35  Vessel and gear identification.

    While a vessel is in the Licensing Area, a Limited Area closed to 
fishing, or a Closed Area, a recent and up-to-date copy of the 
International Code of Signals (INTERCO) shall be on board and accessible 
at all times. The operator shall comply with the 1989 Food and 
Agricultural Organization standard specifications for the marking and 
identification of fishing vessels. The international radio call sign of 
the vessel shall be painted in white on a black background, or in black 
on a white background, and be clear, distinct, and uncovered, in the 
following manner:
    (a) On both sides of the vessel's hull or superstructure, with each 
letter and number being at least 1 m high and having a stroke width of 
16.7 cm, with the background extending to provide a border around the 
mark of not less than 16.7 cm.
    (b) On the vessel's deck, on the body of any helicopter and on the 
hull of any skiff, with each letter and number being at least 30 cm 
high, and having a stroke width of 5 cm with the background extending to 
provide a border around the mark of not less than 5 cm.
    (c) On any other equipment being carried by and intended to be 
separated from the vessel during normal fishing operations, with each 
letter and number being at least 10 cm high and having a stroke width of 
1.7 cm, with the background extending to provide a border around the 
mark of not less than 1.7 cm.

[[Page 178]]



Sec. 300.36  Closed area stowage requirements.

    At all times while a vessel is in a Closed Area, the fishing gear of 
the vessel shall be stowed in a manner as not to be readily available 
for fishing. In particular, the boom shall be lowered as far as possible 
so that the vessel cannot be used for fishing, but so that the skiff is 
accessible for use in emergency situations; the helicopter, if any shall 
be tied down; and launches shall be secured.



Sec. 300.37  Radio monitoring.

    The international distress frequency, 2.182 mHz, and 156.8 mHz 
(Channel 16, VHF) shall be monitored continuously from the vessel for 
the purpose of facilitating communication with the fisheries management, 
surveillance and enforcement authorities of the Parties.



Sec. 300.38  Prohibitions.

    (a) Except as provided for in Sec. 300.39, in addition to the 
prohibitions in Sec. 300.4, it is unlawful for any person subject to the 
jurisdiction of the United States to do any of the following:
    (1) To violate the Act or any provision of any regulation or order 
issued pursuant to Act.
    (2) To use a vessel for fishing in violation of an applicable 
national law.
    (3) To violate the terms and conditions of any fishing arrangement 
to which that person is a party.
    (4) To use a vessel for fishing in any Closed Area.
    (5) To refuse to permit any authorized officer or authorized party 
officer to board a fishing vessel for purpose of conducting a search or 
inspection in connection with the enforcement of the Act or the Treaty.
    (6) To refuse to comply with the instructions of an authorized 
officer or authorized party officer relating to fishing activities under 
the Treaty.
    (7) To refuse to permit an authorized inspector full access to any 
place where fish taken in the Licensing Area is unloaded.
    (8) To refuse to allow an authorized inspector to remove samples of 
fish from a vessel that fished in the Licensing Area.
    (9) To forcibly assault, resist, oppose, impede, intimidate, or 
interfere with:
    (i) Any authorized officer, authorized party officer or authorized 
inspector in the conduct of a search or inspection in connection with 
the enforcement of these regulations, the Act or the Treaty; or
    (ii) An observer in the conduct of observer duties under the Treaty.
    (10) To transship fish on board a vessel that fished in the 
Licensing Area, except in accordance with the requirements of 
Sec. 300.46.
    (11) To fail to have installed, allow to be programmed, carry, or 
have operational a VMS unit while in the Treaty Area as specified in 
Sec. 300.45(a).
    (12) To fail to activate a VMS unit, to interrupt, interfere with, 
or impede the operation of a VMS unit, to tamper with, alter, damage, or 
disable a VMS unit, or to move or remove a VMS unit without prior 
notification as specified in Sec. 300.45(e).
    (13) In the event of a VMS unit failure or breakdown or interruption 
of automatic position reporting in the Treaty Area, to fail to submit 
manual position reports as specified in Sec. 300.45(f).
    (14) In the event of a VMS unit failure or breakdown or interruption 
of automatic position reporting in the Treaty Area and if directed by 
the Administrator or an authorized officer, to fail to stow fishing gear 
or take the vessel to a designated port as specified in Sec. 300.45(f).
    (15) To fail to repair or replace a VMS unit as specified in 
Sec. 300.45(h).
    (b) Except as provided for in Sec. 300.39, it is unlawful for any 
person subject to the jurisdiction of the United States when in the 
Licensing Area:
    (1) To use a vessel to fish unless validly licensed as required by 
the Administrator.
    (2) To use a vessel for directed fishing for southern bluefin tuna 
or for fishing for any kinds of fish other than tunas, except that fish 
may be caught as an incidental bycatch.
    (3) To use a vessel for fishing by any method, except the purse-
seine method.
    (4) To use any vessel to engage in fishing after the revocation of 
its license, or during the period of suspension of an applicable 
license.

[[Page 179]]

    (5) To operate a vessel in such a way as to disrupt or in any other 
way adversely affect the activities of traditional and locally based 
fishermen and fishing vessels.
    (6) To use a vessel to fish in a manner inconsistent with an order 
issued by the Secretary under Sec. 300.42 (section 11 of the Act).
    (7) Except for circumstances involving force majeure and other 
emergencies involving the health or safety of crew members or the safety 
of the vessel, to use aircraft in association with fishing activities of 
a vessel, unless it is identified on the license application for the 
vessel, or any amendment thereto.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 72 FR 6153, Feb. 9, 2007]



Sec. 300.39  Exceptions.

    (a) The prohibitions of Sec. 300.38 and the licensing requirements 
of Sec. 300.32 do not apply to fishing for albacore tuna by vessels 
using the trolling method or to fishing by vessels using the longline 
method in the high seas areas of the Treaty Area.
    (b) The prohibitions of Sec. 300.38(a)(4), (a)(5), and (b)(3) do not 
apply to fishing under the terms and conditions of a fishing 
arrangement.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 72 FR 6153, Feb. 9, 2007]



Sec. 300.40  Civil penalties.

    The procedures of 15 CFR part 904 apply to the assessment of civil 
penalties, except as modified by the requirements of section 8 of the 
Act.



Sec. 300.41  Investigation notification.

    Upon commencement of an investigation under section 10(b)(1) of the 
Act, the operator of any vessel concerned shall have 30 days after 
receipt of notification of the investigation and the operator's rights 
under section 10(b)(1) to submit comments, information, or evidence 
bearing on the investigation, and to request in writing that the 
Secretary provide the operator an opportunity to present the comments, 
information, or evidence orally to the Secretary or the Secretary's 
representative.



Sec. 300.42  Findings leading to removal from fishing area.

    (a) Following an investigation conducted under section 10(b) of the 
Act, the Secretary, with the concurrence of the Secretary of State, and 
upon the request of the Pacific Island Party concerned, may order a 
fishing vessel that has not submitted to the jurisdiction of that 
Pacific Island Party to leave immediately the Licensing Area, all 
Limited Areas, and all Closed Areas upon making a finding that:
    (1) The fishing vessel--
    (i) While fishing in the Licensing Area did not have a license 
issued under Sec. 300.32 to fish in the Licensing Area, and that under 
the terms of the Treaty the fishing is not authorized to be conducted in 
the Licensing Area without such a license.
    (ii) Was involved in any incident in which an authorized officer, 
authorized party officer, or observer was allegedly assaulted with 
resultant bodily harm, physically threatened, forcibly resisted, refused 
boarding or subjected to physical intimidation or physical interference 
in the performance of duties as authorized by the Act or the Treaty;
    (iii) Has not made full payment within 60 days of any amount due as 
a result of a final judgement or other final determination deriving from 
a violation in waters within the Treaty Area of a Pacific Island Party; 
or
    (iv) Was not represented by an agent for service of process in 
accordance with the Treaty; or
    (2) There is probable cause to believe that the fishing vessel--
    (i) Was used in violation of section 5(a)(4), (a)(5), (b)(2), or 
(b)(3) of the Act;
    (ii) Used an aircraft in violation of section 5(b)(7) of the Act; or
    (iii) Was involved in an incident in which section 5(a)(7) of the 
Act was violated.
    (b) Upon being advised by the Secretary of State that proper 
notification to Parties has been made by a Pacific Island Party that 
such Pacific Island Party is investigating an alleged infringement of 
the Treaty by a vessel in waters under the jurisdiction of that Pacific 
Island Party, the Secretary shall order the vessel to leave those

[[Page 180]]

waters until the Secretary of State notifies the Secretary that the 
order is no longer necessary.
    (c) The Secretary shall rescind any order issued on the basis of a 
finding under paragraphs (a)(1) (iii) or (iv) of this section 
(subsections 11(a)(1) (C) or (D) of the Act) as soon as the Secretary 
determines that the facts underlying the finding do not apply.
    (d) An order issued in accordance with this section is not subject 
to judicial review.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 72 FR 6154, Feb. 9, 2007]



Sec. 300.43  Observers.

    (a) The operator and each member of the crew of a vessel shall allow 
and assist any person identified as an observer under the Treaty by the 
Pacific Island Parties:
    (1) To board the vessel for scientific, compliance, monitoring and 
other functions at the point and time notified by the Pacific Island 
Parties to the Secretary.
    (2) Without interfering unduly with the lawful operation of the 
vessel, to have full access to and use of facilities and equipment on 
board the vessel that the observer may determine are necessary to carry 
out observer duties; have full access to the bridge, fish on board, and 
areas that may be used to hold, process, weigh and store fish; remove 
samples; have full access to vessel's records, including its log and 
documentation for the purpose of inspection and copying; have reasonable 
access to navigation equipment, charts, and radios, and gather any other 
information relating to fisheries in the Licensing Area.
    (3) To disembark at the point and time notified by the Pacific 
Island Parties to the Secretary.
    (4) To carry out observer duties safely.
    (b) The operator shall provide the observer, while on board the 
vessel, at no expense to the Pacific Island Parties, with food, 
accommodation and medical facilities of reasonable standard as may be 
acceptable to the Pacific Island Party whose representative is serving 
as the observer.



Sec. 300.44  Other inspections.

    The operator and each member of the crew of any vessel from which 
any fish taken in the Licensing Area is unloaded or transshipped shall 
allow, or arrange for, and assist any authorized inspector, authorized 
party officer, or authorized officer to have full access to any place 
where the fish is unloaded or transshipped, to remove samples, to have 
full access to the vessel's records, including its log and documentation 
for the purpose of inspection and photocopying, and to gather any other 
information relating to fisheries in the Licensing Area without 
interfering unduly with the lawful operation of the vessel.



Sec. 300.45  Vessel Monitoring System.

    (a) Applicability. Holders of vessel licenses issued under 
Sec. 300.32 are required, in order to have the licensed vessel in the 
Treaty Area, to:
    (1) Have installed a VMS unit on board the licensed vessel;
    (2) Allow the Administrator, its agent, or a person authorized by 
the Administrator to program the VMS unit to transmit position and 
related information to the Administrator;
    (3) If directed by the Regional Administrator, allow NMFS, its 
agent, or a person authorized by NMFS to program the VMS unit to 
transmit position and related information to NMFS; and
    (4) Carry and have operational the VMS unit at all times while in 
the Treaty Area, except as provided in paragraphs (f) and (g) of this 
section.
    (b) FFA Vessel Register. Purse seine vessels must be in good 
standing on the FFA Vessel Register maintained by the Administrator in 
order to be licensed under the Treaty. FFA Vessel Register application 
forms may be obtained from the Regional Administrator or the 
Administrator or from the FFA Web site: http://www.ffa.int. Purse seine 
vessel owners or operators must submit completed FFA Vessel Register 
applications to the Regional Administrator for transmittal to the 
Administrator and pay fees for registration of their vessel(s) on the 
FFA Vessel Register annually. The vessel owner or operator may submit a 
completed FFA Vessel Register application form at any time,

[[Page 181]]

but the application must be received by the Regional Administrator at 
least seven days before the first day of the next licensing period to 
avoid the potential lapse of the registration and license between 
licensing periods.
    (c) VMS unit installation. A VMS unit required under this section 
must be installed by a person authorized by the Administrator. A list of 
Administrator-authorized VMS unit installers may be obtained from the 
Regional Administrator or the Administrator.
    (d) Hardware and software specifications. The VMS unit installed and 
carried on board a vessel to comply with the requirements of this 
section must consist of hardware and software that is approved by the 
Administrator and approved by NMFS. A current list of hardware and 
software approved by the Administrator may be obtained from the 
Administrator. A current list of hardware and software approved by NMFS 
may be obtained from NMFS.
    (e) Service activation. Other than when in port or in a shipyard and 
having given proper notification to the Administrator as specified in 
paragraph (g) of this section, the owner or operator of a vessel 
licensed under Sec. 300.32 must, when the vessel is in the Treaty Area:
    (1) Activate the VMS unit on board the licensed vessel to transmit 
automatic position reports;
    (2) Ensure that no person interrupts, interferes with, or impedes 
the operation of the VMS unit or tampers with, alters, damages, or 
disables the VMS unit, or attempts any of the same; and
    (3) Ensure that no person moves or removes the VMS unit from the 
installed position without first notifying the Administrator by 
telephone, facsimile, or e-mail of such movement or removal.
    (f) Interruption of VMS unit signal. When a vessel owner or operator 
is notified by the Administrator or an authorized officer that automatic 
position reports are not being received, or the vessel owner or operator 
is otherwise alerted or aware that transmission of automatic position 
reports has been interrupted, the vessel owner and operator must comply 
with the following:
    (1) The vessel owner or operator must submit manual position reports 
that include vessel name, call sign, current position (latitude and 
longitude to the nearest minute), date, and time to the Administrator by 
telephone, facsimile, or e-mail at intervals of no greater than eight 
hours or a shorter interval if and as specified by the Administrator or 
an authorized officer. The reports must continue to be submitted until 
the Administrator has confirmed to the vessel owner or operator that the 
VMS unit is properly transmitting position reports. If the manual 
position reports cannot be made, the vessel operator or owner must 
notify the Administrator of such as soon as possible, by any means 
possible.
    (2) If directed by the Administrator or an authorized officer, the 
vessel operator must immediately stow the fishing gear in the manner 
described in Sec. 300.36, take the vessel directly to a port designated 
by the Administrator or authorized officer, and notify the Administrator 
by telephone, facsimile, or e-mail as soon as possible that the vessel 
is being taken to port with fishing gear stowed.
    (g) Shutdown of VMS unit while in port or in shipyard. When a vessel 
is in port and not moving, the VMS unit may be shut down, provided that 
the Administrator has been notified by telephone, facsimile, or e-mail 
that the vessel is in port and of the intended shutdown, and only as 
long as manual position reports as described in paragraph (f)(1) of this 
section are submitted to the Administrator at intervals of no greater 
than 24 hours or a shorter interval if and as specified by the 
Administrator or an authorized officer. If the VMS unit is shut down 
while the vessel is in port, the vessel owner or operator must notify 
the Administrator by telephone, facsimile, or e-mail as soon as possible 
after the vessel's departure from port. When the vessel is in a 
shipyard, the VMS unit may be shut down and the submission of manual 
position reports is not required, provided that the Administrator has 
been notified by telephone, facsimile, or e-mail that the vessel is in 
the shipyard and of the intended VMS unit shutdown. If the VMS unit is 
shut down while the vessel is in a shipyard, the vessel owner or 
operator must notify the Administrator by telephone, facsimile, or e-
mail as soon

[[Page 182]]

as possible after the vessel's departure from the shipyard.
    (h) VMS unit repair and replacement. After a fishing trip during 
which interruption of automatic position reports has occurred, the 
vessel's owner or operator must have the VMS unit repaired or replaced 
prior to the vessel's next trip. If the VMS unit is replaced, the new 
VMS unit must be installed by an Administrator-authorized VMS unit 
installer, as specified in paragraph (c) of this section. In making such 
repairs or replacements, conformity with the current requirements must 
be met before the vessel may lawfully operate under the Treaty.
    (i) Access to data. As a condition to obtaining a license, holders 
of vessel licenses issued under Sec. 300.32 must allow the Regional 
Administrator, an authorized officer, the Administrator or an authorized 
party officer or designees access to the vessel's position data obtained 
from the VMS unit at the time of, or after, its transmission to the 
vendor or receiver.

[72 FR 6154, Feb. 9, 2007, as amended at 75 FR 74648, Dec. 1, 2010]



Sec. 300.46  Transshipping requirements.

    (a) Applicability. This section applies to vessels licensed under 
Sec. 300.32.
    (b) Transshipping may only be done at the time and place authorized 
for transshipment by the Pacific Island Parties, following the 
notification and request requirements of Sec. 300.34(c)(5).
    (c) The operator and each member of the crew of a vessel from which 
any fish taken in the Licensing Area is transshipped must:
    (1) Allow and assist any person identified as an officer of the 
Pacific Island Party to:
    (i) Have full access to the vessel and any place where such fish is 
being transshipped and the use of facilities and equipment that the 
officer may determine is necessary to carry out his or her duties;
    (ii) Have full access to the bridge, fish on board and areas which 
may be used to hold, process, weigh and store fish;
    (iii) Remove samples;
    (iv) Have full access to the vessel's records, including its log and 
documentation, for the purpose of inspection and copying; and
    (v) Gather any other information required to fully monitor the 
activity without interfering unduly with the lawful operation of the 
vessel; and
    (2) Not assault, obstruct, resist, delay, refuse boarding to, 
intimidate, or interfere with any person identified as an officer of the 
Pacific Island Party in the performance of his or her duties.
    (d) Transshipping at sea may only be done:
    (1) In a designated area in accordance with such terms and 
conditions as may be agreed between the operator of the vessel and the 
Pacific Island Party in whose jurisdiction the transshipment is to take 
place;
    (2) In accordance with the requirements of Sec. 300.34; and
    (3) If the catch is transshipped to a carrier vessel duly authorized 
in accordance with national laws.

[72 FR 6155, Feb. 9, 2007]



                   Subpart E_Pacific Halibut Fisheries

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 773-773k.



Sec. 300.60  Purpose and scope.

    This subpart implements the North Pacific Halibut Act of 1982 (Act) 
and is intended to supplement, not conflict with, the annual fishery 
management measures adopted by the International Pacific Halibut 
Commission (Commission) under the Convention between the United States 
and Canada for the Preservation of the Halibut Fishery of the Northern 
Pacific Ocean and Bering Sea (Convention).



Sec. 300.61  Definitions.

    In addition to the terms defined in Sec. 300.2 and those in the Act 
and the Convention, the terms used in this subpart have the following 
meanings. If a term is defined differently in Sec. 300.2, the Act, or 
the Convention, the definition in this section shall apply.

[[Page 183]]

    Alaska Native tribe means, for purposes of the subsistence fishery 
for Pacific halibut in waters in and off Alaska, a Federally recognized 
Alaska Native tribe that has customary and traditional use of halibut 
and that is listed in Sec. 300.65(g)(2) of this part.
    Annual combined catch limit, for purposes of commercial and sport 
fishing in Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A, means the annual total 
allowable halibut removals (halibut harvest plus wastage) by persons 
fishing IFQ and by charter vessel anglers.
    Annual commercial catch limit, for purposes of commercial fishing in 
Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A, means the annual commercial 
allocation minus an area-specific estimate of commercial halibut 
wastage.
    Annual guided sport catch limit, for purposes of sport fishing in 
Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A, means the annual guided sport 
allocation minus an area-specific estimate of guided sport halibut 
wastage.
    Area 2A includes all waters off the States of California, Oregon, 
and Washington.
    Area 2C includes all waters off Alaska that are east of a line 
running 340 true from Cape Spencer Light (58 11 54" N. lat., 
136 38 24" W. long.) and south and east of a line running 205 
true from said light.
    Area 3A means all waters between Area 2C and a line extending from 
the most northerly point on Cape Aklek (574115" N. latitude, 
1553500" W. longitude) to Cape Ikolik (571717" N. 
latitude, 1544718" W. longitude), then along the Kodiak Island 
coastline to Cape Trinity (564450" N. latitude, 
1540844" W. longitude), then 140 true.
    Charter halibut permit means a permit issued by the National Marine 
Fisheries Service pursuant to Sec. 300.67.
    Charter vessel, for purposes of Secs. 300.65, 300.66, and 300.67, 
means a vessel used while providing or receiving sport fishing guide 
services for halibut.
    Charter vessel angler, for purposes of Secs. 300.65, 300.66, and 
300.67, means a person, paying or non-paying, receiving sport fishing 
guide services for halibut.
    Charter vessel fishing trip, for purposes of Secs. 300.65, 300.66, 
and 300.67, means the time period between the first deployment of 
fishing gear into the water from a charter vessel by a charter vessel 
angler and the offloading of one or more charter vessel anglers or any 
halibut from that vessel.
    Charter vessel guide, for purposes of Secs. 300.65, 300.66 and 
300.67, means a person who holds an annual sport fishing guide license 
or registration issued by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, or a 
person who provides sport fishing guide services.
    Charter vessel operator, for purposes of Sec. 300.65, means the 
person in control of the charter vessel during a charter vessel fishing 
trip.
    Chiniak Bay means all waters bounded by the shoreline and straight 
lines connecting the coordinates in the order listed:
    (1) North from Cape Chiniak (5737.22 N. lat., 
1529.36 W. long.);
    (2) To Buoy #1 at Williams Reef (5750.36 N. lat., 
1528.82 W. long.);
    (3) To East Cape on Spruce Island (5754.89 N. lat., 
15219.45 W. long.);
    (4) To Termination Point on Kodiak Island (5751.31 N. 
lat., 15224.01 W. long.); and
    (5) Connecting to a line running counterclockwise along the 
shoreline of Kodiak Island to Cape Chiniak (5737.22 N. lat., 
1529.36 W. long.).
    Commercial fishing means fishing, the resulting catch of which 
either is, or is intended to be, sold or bartered but does not include 
subsistence fishing.
    Commission means the International Pacific Halibut Commission.
    Commission regulatory area means an area defined by the Commission 
for purposes of the Convention identified in 50 CFR 300.60 and 
prescribed in the annual management measures published pursuant to 50 
CFR 300.62.
    Community charter halibut permit means a permit issued by NMFS to a 
Community Quota Entity pursuant to Sec. 300.67.
    Compensation, for purposes of sport fishing for Pacific halibut in 
Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A, means direct or indirect payment, 
remuneration, or other benefits received in return for services, 
regardless of the source; for this definition, ``benefits'' includes 
wages or other employment benefits given directly or indirectly to an 
individual or organization, and any

[[Page 184]]

dues, payments, fees, or other remuneration given directly or indirectly 
to a fishing club, business, organization, or individual who provides 
sport fishing guide services; and does not include reimbursement for the 
actual daily expenses for fuel, food, or bait.
    Crew member, for purposes of Secs. 300.65 and 300.67, means an 
assistant, deckhand, or similar person who works directly under the 
supervision of, and on the same vessel as, a charter vessel guide or 
operator of a vessel with one or more charter vessel anglers on board.
    Customary trade means, for purposes of the subsistence fishery for 
Pacific halibut in waters in and off Alaska, the non-commercial exchange 
of subsistence halibut for anything other than items of significant 
value.
    Fishing means the taking, harvesting, or catching of fish, or any 
activity that can reasonably be expected to result in the taking, 
harvesting, or catching of fish, including:
    (1) The deployment of any amount or component part of setline gear 
anywhere in the maritime area; or
    (2) The deployment of longline pot gear as defined in Sec. 679.2 of 
this title, or component part of that gear in Commission regulatory 
areas 2C, 3A, 3B, and that portion of Area 4A in the Gulf of Alaska west 
of Area 3B and east of 17000 W. long.
    Fishing week, for purposes of Sec. 300.65(d), means a time period 
that begins at 0001 hours, A.l.t., Monday morning and ends at 2400 
hours, A.l.t., the following Sunday night.
    Guided Angler Fish (GAF) means halibut transferred within a year 
from a Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A IFQ permit holder to a GAF 
permit that is issued to a person holding a charter halibut permit, 
community charter halibut permit, or military charter halibut permit for 
the corresponding area.
    Guided Angler Fish (GAF) permit means an annual permit issued by the 
National Marine Fisheries Service pursuant to Sec. 300.65(c)(5)(iii).
    Guided Angler Fish (GAF) permit holder means the person identified 
on a GAF permit.
    Halibut harvest means the catching and retaining of any halibut.
    Head-on length means a straight line measurement passing over the 
pectoral fin from the tip of the lower jaw with the mouth closed to the 
extreme end of the middle of the tail.
    Individual Fishing Quota (IFQ), for purposes of this subpart, means 
the annual catch limit of halibut that may be harvested by a person who 
is lawfully allocated a harvest privilege for a specific portion of the 
annual commercial catch limit of halibut.
    IFQ fishing trip, for purposes of the subpart, means the period 
beginning when a vessel operator commences harvesting IFQ halibut and 
ending when the vessel operator lands any species.
    IFQ halibut means any halibut that is harvested with setline gear as 
defined in this section or fixed gear as defined in Sec. 679.2 of this 
title while commercial fishing in any IFQ regulatory area defined in 
Sec. 679.2 of this title.
    Military charter halibut permit means a permit issued by NMFS to a 
United States Military Morale, Welfare and Recreation Program pursuant 
to Sec. 300.67.
    Overall length of a vessel means the horizontal distance, rounded to 
the nearest ft/meter, between the foremost part of the stem and the 
aftermost part of the stern (excluding bowsprits, rudders, outboard 
motor brackets, and similar fittings or attachments).
    Person includes an individual, corporation, firm, or association.
    Power hauling means using electrically, hydraulically, or 
mechanically powered devices or attachments or other assisting devises 
or attachments to deploy and retrieve fishing gear. Power hauling does 
not include the use of hand power, a hand powered crank, a fishing rod, 
a downrigger, or a hand troll gurdy.
    Rural means, for purposes of the subsistence fishery for Pacific 
halibut in waters in and off Alaska, a community of Alaska listed at 
Sec. 300.65(g)(1) or an area of Alaska described at Sec. 300.65(g)(3) in 
which the non-commercial, customary, and traditional use of fish and 
game for personal or family consumption is a principal characteristic of 
the economy or area and in which there is a long-term, customary, and 
traditional use of halibut.

[[Page 185]]

    Rural resident means, for purposes of the subsistence fishery for 
Pacific halibut in waters in and off Alaska:
    (1) An individual domiciled in a rural community listed in the table 
at Sec. 300.65(g)(1) and who has maintained a domicile in rural 
communities listed in the table at Sec. 300.65(g)(1), or in rural areas 
described at Sec. 300.65(g)(3), for the 12 consecutive months 
immediately preceding the time when the assertion of residence is made, 
and who is not claiming residency in another state, territory, or 
country; or
    (2) An individual domiciled in a rural area described at 
Sec. 300.65(g)(3) and who has maintained a domicile in rural areas 
described at Sec. 300.65(g)(3), or in rural communities listed in the 
table at Sec. 300.65(g)(1), for the 12 consecutive months immediately 
preceding the time when the assertion of residence is made, and who is 
not claiming residency in another state, territory, or country.
    Setline gear means one or more stationary, buoyed, and anchored 
lines with hooks attached.
    Sport fishing means:
    (1) In regulatory area 2A, all fishing other than commercial fishing 
and treaty Indian ceremonial and subsistence fishing; and
    (2) In waters in and off Alaska, all fishing other than commercial 
fishing and subsistence fishing.
    Sport fishing guide services, for purposes of Secs. 300.65(d) and 
300.67, means assistance, for compensation or with the intent to receive 
compensation, to a person who is sport fishing, to take or attempt to 
take halibut by accompanying or physically directing the sport fisherman 
in sport fishing activities during any part of a charter vessel fishing 
trip. Sport fishing guide services do not include services provided by a 
crew member, as defined at Sec. 300.61.
    Subarea 2A-1 includes all waters off the coast of Washington that 
are north of the Quinault River, WA (4721.00 N. lat) and east 
of 12544.00' W. long; all waters off the coast of Washington that are 
between the Quinault River, WA (4721.00 N. lat) and Point 
Chehalis, WA (4653.30 N. lat.), and east of 12508.50 
W. long.; and all inland marine waters of Washington.
    Subsistence means, with respect to waters in and off Alaska, the 
non-commercial, long-term, customary and traditional use of halibut.
    Subsistence halibut means halibut caught by a rural resident or a 
member of an Alaska Native tribe for direct personal or family 
consumption as food, sharing for personal or family consumption as food, 
or customary trade.
    Subsistence halibut registration certificate (SHARC) means 
documentation, issued by NMFS, of the registration required at 
Sec. 300.65(i).
    Treaty Indian tribes means the Hoh, Jamestown S'Klallam, Lower Elwha 
S'Klallam, Lummi, Makah, Port Gamble S'Klallam, Quileute, Quinault, 
Skokomish, Suquamish, Swinomish, Tulalip, and Nooksack tribes.
    Valid, with respect to a charter halibut permit for purposes of 
Secs. 300.66 and 300.67, means the charter halibut permit that is 
currently in effect.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996]

    Editorial Note: For Federal Register citations affecting 
Sec. 300.61, see the List of CFR Sections Affected, which appears in the 
Finding Aids section of the printed volume and at www.fdsys.gov.



Sec. 300.62  Annual management measures.

    Annual management measures may be added and modified through 
adoption by the Commission and publication in the Federal Register by 
the Assistant Administrator, with immediate regulatory effect. Such 
measures may include, inter alia, provisions governing: Licensing of 
vessels, inseason actions, regulatory areas, fishing periods, closed 
periods, closed areas, catch limits (quotas), fishing period limits, 
size limits, careful release of halibut, vessel clearances, logs, 
receipt and possession of halibut, fishing gear, retention of tagged 
halibut, supervision of unloading and weighing, and sport fishing for 
halibut. The Assistant Administrator will publish the Commission's 
regulations setting forth annual management measures in the Federal 
Register by March 15 each year. Annual management measures may be 
adjusted inseason by the Commission.

[[Page 186]]



Sec. 300.63  Catch sharing plan and domestic management measures in Area 2A.

    (a) A catch sharing plan (CSP) may be developed by the Pacific 
Fishery Management Council and approved by NMFS for portions of the 
fishery. Any approved CSP may be obtained from the Administrator, West 
Coast Region, NMFS.
    (b)(1) Each year, before January 1, NMFS will publish a proposal to 
govern the recreational fishery under the CSP for the following year and 
will seek public comment. The comment period will extend until after the 
Commission's annual meeting, so the public will have the opportunity to 
consider the final area 2A total allowable catch (TAC) before submitting 
comments. After the Commission's annual meeting and review of public 
comments, NMFS will publish in the Federal Register the final rule 
governing sport fishing in area 2A. Annual management measures may be 
adjusted inseason by NMFS.
    (2) A portion of the commercial TAC is allocated as incidental catch 
in the salmon troll fishery in Area 2A. Each year the landing 
restrictions necessary to keep the fishery within its allocation will be 
recommended by the Pacific Fishery Management Council at its spring 
meetings, and will be published in the Federal Register along with the 
annual salmon management measures.
    (3) A portion of the Area 2A Washington recreational TAC is 
allocated as incidental catch in the sablefish primary fishery north of 
4653.30' N. lat, (Pt. Chehalis, Washington), which is regulated under 
50 CFR 660.231. This fishing opportunity is only available in years in 
which the Area 2A TAC is greater than 900,000 lb (408.2 mt,) provided 
that a minimum of 10,000 lb (4.5 mt) is available above a Washington 
recreational TAC of 214,100 lb (97.1 mt). Each year that this harvest is 
available, the landing restrictions necessary to keep this fishery 
within its allocation will be recommended by the Pacific Fishery 
Management Council at its spring meetings, and will be published in the 
Federal Register. These restrictions will be designed to ensure the 
halibut harvest is incidental to the sablefish harvest and will be based 
on the amounts of halibut and sablefish available to this fishery, and 
other pertinent factors. The restrictions may include catch or landing 
ratios, landing limits, or other means to control the rate of halibut 
landings.
    (i) In years when this incidental harvest of halibut in the 
sablefish primary fishery north of 4653.30 N. lat. is allowed, 
it is allowed only for vessels using longline gear that are registered 
to groundfish limited entry permits with sablefish endorsements and that 
possess the appropriate incidental halibut harvest license issued by the 
Commission.
    (ii) It is unlawful for any person to possess, land or purchase 
halibut south of 4653.30 N. lat. that were taken and retained 
as incidental catch authorized by this section in the sablefish primary 
fishery.
    (4) The commercial longline fishery in area 2A is governed by the 
annual management measures published pursuant to Secs. 300.62 and 
300.63.
    (5) The treaty Indian fishery is governed by Sec. 300.64 and tribal 
regulations. The annual quota for the fishery will be announced with the 
Commission regulations under Sec. 300.62
    (c) Flexible Inseason Management Provisions for Sport Halibut 
Fisheries in Area 2A. (1) The Regional Administrator, NMFS West Coast 
Region, after consultation with the Chairman of the Pacific Fishery 
Management Council, the Commission Executive Director, and the Fisheries 
Director(s) of the affected state(s), or their designees, is authorized 
to modify regulations during the season after making the following 
determinations:
    (i) The action is necessary to allow allocation objectives to be 
met.
    (ii) The action will not result in exceeding the catch limit for the 
area.
    (iii) If any of the sport fishery subareas north of Cape Falcon, 
Oregon are not projected to utilize their respective quotas by September 
30, NMFS may take inseason action to transfer any projected unused quota 
to another Washington sport subarea.
    (iv) If any of the sport fishery subareas south of Leadbetter Point, 
Washington, are not projected to utilize their respective quotas by 
their season

[[Page 187]]

ending dates, NMFS may take inseason action to transfer any projected 
unused quota to another Oregon sport subarea.
    (v) Notwithstanding regulations at (c)(1)(i) of this section, if the 
total estimated yelloweye rockfish bycatch mortality from recreational 
halibut trips in all Oregon subareas is projected to exceed 22 percent 
of the annual Oregon recreational yelloweye rockfish harvest guideline, 
NMFS may take inseason action to reduce yelloweye rockfish bycatch 
mortality in the halibut fishery while allowing allocation objectives to 
be met to the extent possible.
    (2) Flexible inseason management provisions include, but are not 
limited to, the following:
    (i) Modification of sport fishing periods;
    (ii) Modification of sport fishing bag limits;
    (iii) Modification of sport fishing size limits;
    (iv) Modification of sport fishing days per calendar week;
    (v) Modification of subarea quotas; and
    (vi) Modification of the Stonewall Bank Yelloweye Rockfish 
Conservation Area (YRCA) restrictions off Oregon using YRCA expansions 
as defined in groundfish regulations at 50 CFR 660.70(g) or (h).
    (3) Notice procedures. (i) Actions taken under this section will be 
published in the Federal Register.
    (ii) Actual notice of inseason management actions will be provided 
by a telephone hotline administered by the West Coast Region, NMFS, at 
206-526-6667 or 800-662-9825. Since provisions of these regulations may 
be altered by inseason actions, sport fishers should monitor the 
telephone hotline for current information for the area in which they are 
fishing.
    (4) Effective dates. (i) Any action issued under this section is 
effective on the date specified in the publication or at the time that 
the action is filed for public inspection with the Office of the Federal 
Register, whichever is later.
    (ii) If time allows, NMFS will invite public comment prior to the 
effective date of any inseason action filed with the Federal Register. 
If the Regional Administrator determines, for good cause, that an 
inseason action must be filed without affording a prior opportunity for 
public comment, public comments will be received for a period of 15 days 
after publication of the action in the Federal Register.
    (iii) Any inseason action issued under this section will remain in 
effect until the stated expiration date or until rescinded, modified, or 
superseded. However, no inseason action has any effect beyond the end of 
the calendar year in which it is issued.
    (5) Availability of data. The Regional Administrator will compile, 
in aggregate form, all data and other information relevant to the action 
being taken and will make them available for public review during normal 
office hours at the West Coast Regional Office, NMFS, Sustainable 
Fisheries Division, 7600 Sand Point Way NE., Seattle, Washington.
    (d) Fishery Election in Area 2A. (1) A vessel that fishes in Area 2A 
may participate in only one of the following three fisheries in Area 2A:
    (i) The sport fishery under section 26 of the annual domestic 
management measures and IPHC regulations;
    (ii) The commercial directed fishery for halibut during the fishing 
period(s) established in section 8 of the annual domestic management 
measures and IPHC regulations and/or the incidental retention of halibut 
during the sablefish primary fishery described at 50 CFR 660.231; or
    (iii) The incidental catch fishery during the salmon troll fishery 
as authorized in section 8 of the annual domestic management measures 
and IPHC regulations.
    (2) No person shall fish for halibut in the sport fishery in Area 2A 
under section 24 of the annual domestic management measures and IPHC 
regulations from a vessel that has been used during the same calendar 
year for commercial halibut fishing in Area 2A or that has been issued a 
permit for the same calendar year for the commercial halibut fishery in 
Area 2A.
    (3) No person shall fish for halibut in the directed commercial 
halibut fishery during the fishing periods established in section 8 of 
the annual domestic management measures and IPHC

[[Page 188]]

regulations and/or retain halibut incidentally taken in the sablefish 
primary fishery in Area 2A from a vessel that has been used during the 
same calendar year for the incidental catch fishery during the salmon 
troll fishery as authorized in Section 8 of the annual domestic 
management measures and IPHC regulations.
    (4) No person shall fish for halibut in the directed commercial 
halibut fishery and/or retain halibut incidentally taken in the 
sablefish primary fishery in Area 2A from a vessel that, during the same 
calendar year, has been used in the sport halibut fishery in Area 2A or 
that is licensed for the sport charter halibut fishery in Area 2A.
    (5) No person shall retain halibut in the salmon troll fishery in 
Area 2A as authorized under section 8 of the annual domestic management 
measures and IPHC regulations taken on a vessel that, during the same 
calendar year, has been used in the sport halibut fishery in Area 2A, or 
that is licensed for the sport charter halibut fishery in Area 2A.
    (6) No person shall retain halibut in the salmon troll fishery in 
Area 2A as authorized under section 8 of the annual domestic management 
measures and IPHC regulations taken on a vessel that, during the same 
calendar year, has been used in the directed commercial halibut fishery 
during the fishing periods established in Section 8 of the annual 
domestic management measures and IPHC regulations and/or retained 
halibut incidentally taken in the sablefish primary fishery for Area 2A 
or that is licensed to participate in these commercial fisheries during 
the fishing periods established in Section 8 of the annual domestic 
management measures and IPHC regulations in Area 2A.
    (e) Area 2A Non-Treaty Commercial Fishery Closed Areas. (1) Non-
treaty commercial vessels operating in the directed commercial fishery 
for halibut in Area 2A are required to fish outside of a closed area, 
known as the Rockfish Conservation Area (RCA), that extends along the 
coast from the U.S./Canada border south to 4010 N. lat. 
Between the U.S./Canada border and 4616 N. lat., the eastern 
boundary of the RCA, is the shoreline. Between 4616 N. lat. 
and 4010 N. lat., the RCA is defined along an eastern boundary 
by a line approximating the 30-fm (55-m) depth contour. Coordinates for 
the 30-fm (55-m) boundary are listed at 50 CFR 660.71(e). Between the 
U.S./Canada border and 4010 N. lat., the RCA is defined along 
a western boundary approximating the 100-fm (183-m) depth contour. 
Coordinates for the 100-fm (183-m) boundary are listed at 50 CFR 
660.73(a).
    (2) Non-treaty commercial vessels operating in the incidental catch 
fishery during the sablefish primary fishery north of Pt. Chehalis, 
Washington, in Area 2A are required to fish outside of a closed area. 
Under Pacific Coast groundfish regulations at 50 CFR 660.230, fishing 
with limited entry fixed gear is prohibited within the North Coast 
Commercial YRCA. It is unlawful to take and retain, possess, or land 
halibut taken with limited entry fixed gear within the North Coast 
Commercial YRCA. The North Coast Commercial YRCA is an area off the 
northern Washington coast, overlapping the northern part of the North 
Coast Recreational YRCA, and is defined by straight lines connecting 
latitude and longitude coordinates. Coordinates for the North Coast 
Commercial YRCA are specified in groundfish regulations at 50 CFR 
660.70(b).
    (3) Non-treaty commercial vessels operating in the incidental catch 
fishery during the salmon troll fishery in Area 2A are required to fish 
outside of a closed area. Under the Pacific Coast groundfish regulations 
at 50 CFR 660.330(10), fishing with salmon troll gear is prohibited 
within the Salmon Troll YRCA. It is unlawful for commercial salmon troll 
vessels to take and retain, possess or land fish within the Salmon Troll 
YRCA. The Salmon Troll YRCA is an area off the northern Washington coast 
and is defined by straight lines connecting latitude and longitude 
coordinates. Coordinates for the Salmon Troll YRCA are specified in 
groundfish regulations at 50 CFR 660.70(c), and in salmon regulations at 
50 CFR 660.405.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996]

    Editorial Note: For Federal Register citations affecting 
Sec. 300.63, see the List of CFR Sections Affected, which appears in the

[[Page 189]]

Finding Aids section of the printed volume and at www.fdsys.gov.



Sec. 300.64  Fishing by U.S. treaty Indian tribes.

    (a) Halibut fishing in subarea 2A-1 by members of U.S. treaty Indian 
tribes located in the State of Washington is governed by this section.
    (b) Commercial fishing for halibut by treaty Indians is permitted 
only in subarea 2A-1 with hook-and-line gear in conformance with the 
season and quota established annually by the Commission.
    (c) Commercial fishing periods and management measures to implement 
paragraph (b) of this section will be established by treaty Indian 
tribal regulations.
    (d) Commercial fishing for halibut by treaty Indians shall comply 
with the Commission's management measures governing size limits, careful 
release of halibut, logs, receipt and possession, and fishing gear 
(published pursuant to Sec. 300.62), except that the 72-hour fishing 
restriction preceding the opening of a halibut fishing period shall not 
apply to treaty Indian fishing.
    (e) Ceremonial and subsistence fishing for halibut by treaty Indians 
in subarea 2A-1 is permitted with hook-and-line gear from January 1 to 
December 31.
    (f) No size or bag limits shall apply to the ceremonial and 
subsistence fishery, except that when commercial halibut fishing is 
prohibited pursuant to paragraph (b) of this section, treaty Indians may 
take and retain not more than two halibut per person per day.
    (g) Halibut taken for ceremonial and subsistence purposes shall not 
be offered for sale or sold.
    (h) Any member of a U.S. treaty Indian tribe who is engaged in 
commercial or ceremonial and subsistence fishing under this section must 
have on his or her person a valid treaty Indian identification card 
issued pursuant to 25 CFR part 249, subpart A, and must comply with the 
treaty Indian vessel and gear identification requirements of Final 
Decision No. 1 and subsequent orders in United States v. Washington 384 
F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash., 1974).
    (i) The following table sets forth the fishing areas of each of the 
13 treaty Indian tribes fishing pursuant to this section. Within subarea 
2A-1, boundaries of a tribe's fishing area may be revised as ordered by 
a Federal Court.

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                   Tribe                             Boundaries
------------------------------------------------------------------------
HOH.......................................  The area between
                                             4754.30 N. lat.
                                             (Quillayute River) and
                                             4721.00 N. lat.
                                             (Quinault River) and east
                                             of 12544.00 W.
                                             long.
JAMESTOWN S'KLALLAM.......................  Those locations in the
                                             Strait of Juan de Fuca and
                                             Puget Sound as determined
                                             in or in accordance with
                                             Final Decision No. 1 and
                                             subsequent orders in United
                                             States v. Washington, 384
                                             F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash.,
                                             1974), and particularly at
                                             626 F. Supp. 1486, to be
                                             places at which the
                                             Jamestown S'Klallam Tribe
                                             may fish under rights
                                             secured by treaties with
                                             the United States.
LOWER ELWHA S'KLALLAM.....................  Those locations in the
                                             Strait of Juan de Fuca and
                                             Puget Sound as determined
                                             in or in accordance with
                                             Final Decision No. 1 and
                                             subsequent orders in United
                                             States v. Washington, 384
                                             F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash.,
                                             1974), and particularly at
                                             459 F. Supp. 1049 and 1066
                                             and 626 F. Supp. 1443, to
                                             be places at which the
                                             Lower Elwha S'Klallam Tribe
                                             may fish under rights
                                             secured by treaties with
                                             the United States.
LUMMI.....................................  Those locations in the
                                             Strait of Juan de Fuca and
                                             Puget Sound as determined
                                             in or in accordance with
                                             Final Decision No. 1 and
                                             subsequent orders in United
                                             States v. Washington, 384
                                             F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash.,
                                             1974), and particularly at
                                             384 F. Supp. 360, as
                                             modified in Subproceeding
                                             No. 89-08 (W.D. Wash.,
                                             February 13, 1990)
                                             (decision and order re:
                                             cross-motions for summary
                                             judgement), to be places at
                                             which the Lummi Tribe may
                                             fish under rights secured
                                             by treaties with the United
                                             States.
MAKAH.....................................  The area north of
                                             4802.25 N. lat.
                                             (Norwegian Memorial) and
                                             east of 12544.00
                                             W. long.
NOOKSACK..................................  Those locations in the
                                             Strait of Juan de Fuca and
                                             Puget Sound as determined
                                             in or in accordance with
                                             Final Decision No. 1 and
                                             subsequent orders in United
                                             States v. Washington, 384
                                             F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash.
                                             1974), and particularly at
                                             459 F. Supp. 1049, to be
                                             places at which the
                                             Nooksack Tribe may fish
                                             under rights secured by
                                             treaties with the United
                                             States.
PORT GAMBLE S'KLALLAM.....................  Those locations in the
                                             Strait of Juan de Fuca and
                                             Puget Sound as determined
                                             in or in accordance with
                                             Final Decision No. 1 and
                                             subsequent orders in United
                                             States v. Washington, 384
                                             F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash.,
                                             1974), and particularly at
                                             626 F. Supp. 1442, to be
                                             places at which the Port
                                             Gamble S'Klallam Tribe may
                                             fish under rights secured
                                             by treaties with the United
                                             States.
QUILEUTE..................................  The area between
                                             4810.00 N. lat.
                                             (Cape Alava) and
                                             4731.70 N. lat.
                                             (Queets River) and east of
                                             12544.00 W. long

[[Page 190]]

 
QUINAULT..................................  The area between
                                             4740.10 N. lat.
                                             (Destruction Island) and
                                             4653.30 N. lat.
                                             (Point Chehalis) and east
                                             of 12508.50 W.
                                             long.
SKOKOMISH.................................  Those locations in the
                                             Strait of Juan de Fuca and
                                             Puget Sound as determined
                                             in or in accordance with
                                             Final Decision No. 1 and
                                             subsequent orders in United
                                             States v. Washington, 384
                                             F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash.,
                                             1974), and particularly at
                                             384 F. Supp. 377, to be
                                             places at which the
                                             Skokomish Tribe may fish
                                             under rights secured by
                                             treaties with the United
                                             States.
SUQUAMISH.................................  Those locations in the
                                             Strait of Juan de Fuca and
                                             Puget Sound as determined
                                             in or in accordance with
                                             Final Decision No. 1 and
                                             subsequent orders in United
                                             States v. Washington, 384
                                             F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash.,
                                             1974), and particularly at
                                             459 F. Supp. 1049, to be
                                             places at which the
                                             Suquamish Tribe may fish
                                             under rights secured by
                                             treaties with the United
                                             States.
SWINOMISH.................................  Those locations in the
                                             Strait of Juan de Fuca and
                                             Puget Sound as determined
                                             in or in accordance with
                                             Final Decision No. 1 and
                                             subsequent orders in United
                                             States v. Washington, 384
                                             F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash.,
                                             1974), and particularly at
                                             459 F. Supp. 1049, to be
                                             places at which the
                                             Swinomish Tribe may fish
                                             under rights secured by
                                             treaties with the United
                                             States.
TULALIP...................................  Those locations in the
                                             Strait of Juan de Fuca and
                                             Puget Sound as determined
                                             in or in accordance with
                                             Final Decision No. 1 and
                                             subsequent orders in United
                                             States v. Washington, 384
                                             F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash.,
                                             1974), and particularly at
                                             626 F. Supp. 1531-1532, to
                                             be places at which the
                                             Tulalip Tribe may fish
                                             under rights secured by
                                             treaties with the United
                                             States.
------------------------------------------------------------------------


[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 74 FR 11697, Mar. 19, 2009; 76 
FR 14319, Mar. 16, 2011; 81 FR 18795, Apr. 1, 2016]



Sec. 300.65  Catch sharing plan and domestic management measures in
waters in and off Alaska.

    (a) A catch sharing plan (CSP) may be developed by the North Pacific 
Fishery Management Council and approved by NMFS for portions of the 
fishery. Any approved CSP may be obtained from the Administrator, Alaska 
Region, NMFS.
    (b) The catch sharing plan for Commission regulatory area 4 
allocates the annual commercial catch limit among Areas 4C, 4D, and 4E 
and will be adopted by the Commission as annual management measures and 
published in the Federal Register as required in Sec. 300.62.
    (c) Catch sharing plan (CSP) for Commission Regulatory Areas 2C and 
3A--(1) General. The catch sharing plan for Commission regulatory areas 
2C and 3A:
    (i) Allocates the annual combined catch limit for Commission 
regulatory areas 2C and 3A in order to establish the annual commercial 
catch limit and the annual guided sport catch limit for the halibut 
commercial fishing and sport fishing seasons, pursuant to paragraphs 
(c)(3) and (4) of this section; and
    (ii) Authorizes the use of Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A 
halibut IFQ as guided angler fish (GAF) for harvest by charter vessel 
anglers in the corresponding area, pursuant to paragraph (c)(5) of this 
section.
    (2) Implementation. The Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A CSP 
annual combined catch limits, annual commercial catch limits, and annual 
guided sport catch limits are adopted by the Commission as annual 
management measures and published by NMFS in the Federal Register as 
required in Sec. 300.62.
    (3) Annual commercial catch limits. (i) The Commission regulatory 
areas 2C and 3A annual commercial catch limits are determined by 
subtracting wastage from the allocations in Tables 1 and 2 of this 
subpart E, adopted by the Commission as annual management measures, and 
published in the Federal Register as required in Sec. 300.62.
    (ii) Commercial fishing in Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A is 
governed by the Commission's annual management measures and by 
regulations at 50 CFR part 679, subparts A, B, D, and E.
    (4) Annual guided sport catch limits. (i) The Commission regulatory 
areas 2C and 3A annual guided sport catch limits are determined by 
subtracting wastage from the allocations in Tables 3 and 4 of this 
subpart E, adopted by the Commission as annual management measures, and 
published in the Federal Register as required in Sec. 300.62.

[[Page 191]]

    (ii) Sport fishing by charter vessel anglers in Commission 
regulatory areas 2C and 3A is governed by the Commission's annual 
management measures and by regulations at 50 CFR part 300, subparts A 
and E.
    (5) Guided Angler Fish (GAF). This paragraph (Sec. 300.65(c)(5)) 
governs the transfer of Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A halibut 
between individual fishing quota (IFQ) and guided angler fish (GAF), the 
issuance of GAF permits, and GAF use.
    (i) General. (A) GAF is derived from halibut IFQ that is transferred 
from a Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A IFQ permit holder's account 
held by a person who also holds quota share (QS), as defined in 
Sec. 679.2 of this title, to a GAF permit holder's account for the same 
regulatory area.
    (B) A GAF permit authorizes a charter vessel angler to retain GAF 
that are caught in the Commission regulatory area specified on a GAF 
permit:
    (1) During the sport halibut fishing season adopted by the 
Commission as annual management measures and published in the Federal 
Register as required in Sec. 300.62, and
    (2) Subject to the GAF use restrictions at paragraphs (c)(5)(iv)(A) 
through (K) of this section.
    (C) NMFS will return unharvested GAF to the IFQ permit holder's 
account from which the GAF were derived on or after fifteen calendar 
days prior to the closing of the commercial halibut fishing season each 
year, subject to paragraph (c)(5)(ii) of this section and underage 
provisions at Sec. 679.40(e) of this title.
    (ii) Transfer Between IFQ and GAF--(A) General. A transfer between 
IFQ and GAF means any transaction in which halibut IFQ passes between an 
IFQ permit holder and a GAF permit holder as:
    (1) A transfer of IFQ to GAF, in which halibut IFQ equivalent 
pounds, as defined in Sec. 679.2 of this title, are transferred from a 
Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A IFQ permit account, converted to 
number(s) of GAF as specified in paragraph (c)(5)(ii)(E) of this 
section, and assigned to a GAF permit holder's account in the same 
management area;
    (2) A transfer of GAF to IFQ, in which GAF in number(s) of fish are 
transferred from a GAF permit holder's account in Commission regulatory 
area 2C or 3A, converted to IFQ equivalent pounds as specified in 
paragraph (c)(5)(ii)(E) of this section, and assigned to the same IFQ 
permit holder's account from which the GAF were derived; or
    (3) The return of unharvested GAF by NMFS to the IFQ permit holder's 
account from which it was derived, on or after 15 calendar days prior to 
the closing of the commercial halibut fishing season.
    (B) Transfer procedure--(1) Application for Transfer Between IFQ and 
GAF. A transfer between IFQ and GAF requires Regional Administrator 
review and approval of a complete Application for Transfer Between IFQ 
and GAF. Both the transferor and the transferee are required to complete 
and sign the application. Transfers will be conducted via methods 
approved by NMFS. The Regional Administrator shall provide an 
Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF on the NMFS Alaska Region 
Web site at http://alaskafisheries.noaa.gov/ram/default.htm. An 
Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF is not required for the 
return of unharvested GAF by NMFS to the IFQ permit holder's account 
from which it was derived, 15 calendar days prior to the closing of the 
commercial halibut fishing season for that year.
    (2) Application timing. The Regional Administrator will not approve 
any Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF before annual IFQ is 
issued for each year or after one month prior to the closing of the 
commercial fishing season for that year. Applications to transfer GAF to 
IFQ will be accepted from August 1 through August 31 only.
    (3) Transfer due to court order, operation of law, or as part of a 
security agreement. NMFS may approve an Application for Transfer Between 
IFQ and GAF to return GAF to the IFQ permit holder's account from which 
it derived pursuant to a court order, operation of law, or a security 
agreement.
    (4) Notification of decision on application. (i) Persons who submit 
an Application for Transfer Between IFQ and

[[Page 192]]

GAF to the Regional Administrator will receive notification of the 
Regional Administrator's decision to approve or disapprove the 
application for transfer.
    (ii) If an Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF is 
disapproved, NMFS will provide the reason(s) in writing by mail, posted 
on the date of that decision.
    (iii) Disapproval of an Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF 
may be appealed pursuant to Sec. 679.43 of this title.
    (iv) The Regional Administrator will not approve a transfer between 
IFQ and GAF on an interim basis if an applicant appeals a disapproval of 
an Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF pursuant to Sec. 679.43 
of this title.
    (5) IFQ and GAF accounts. (i) Accounts affected by either a Regional 
Administrator-approved Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF or 
the return of unharvested GAF to IFQ on or after 15 calendar days prior 
to the closing of the commercial halibut fishing season for that year 
will be adjusted on the date of approval or return. Applications for 
Transfer Between IFQ and GAF that are transfers of GAF to IFQ that have 
been approved by the Regional Administrator will be completed not 
earlier than September 1. Any necessary permits will be sent with the 
notification of the Regional Administrator's decision on the Application 
for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF.
    (ii) Upon approval of an Application for Transfer Between IFQ and 
GAF for an initial transfer from IFQ to GAF, NMFS will establish a new 
GAF account for the GAF applicant's account and issue the resulting new 
GAF and IFQ permits. If a GAF account already exists from a previous 
transfer from the same IFQ account in the corresponding management area 
in that year, NMFS will modify the GAF recipient's GAF account and the 
IFQ transferor's permit account and issue modified GAF and IFQ permits 
upon approval of an Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF.
    (iii) On or after 15 calendar days prior to the closing of the 
commercial halibut fishing season, NMFS will convert unharvested GAF 
from a GAF permit holder's account back into IFQ equivalent pounds as 
specified in paragraph (c)(5)(ii)(E)(2) of this section, and return the 
resulting IFQ equivalent pounds to the IFQ permit holder's account from 
which the GAF were derived, unless prevented by regulations at 15 CFR 
part 904.
    (C) Complete application. Applicants must submit a completed 
Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF to the Regional 
Administrator as instructed on the application. NMFS will notify 
applicants with incomplete applications of the specific information 
necessary to complete the application.
    (D) Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF approval criteria. 
An Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF will not be approved 
until the Regional Administrator has determined that:
    (1) The person applying to transfer IFQ to GAF or receive IFQ from a 
transfer of GAF to IFQ:
    (i) Possesses at least one unit of halibut quota share (QS), as 
defined in Sec. 679.2 of this title, in the applicable Commission 
regulatory area, either Area 2C or Area 3A, for which the transfer of 
IFQ to GAF is requested;
    (ii) Has been issued an annual IFQ Permit, as defined in 
Sec. 679.4(d)(1) of this title, for the Commission regulatory area 
corresponding to the person's QS holding, either Area 2C or Area 3A, 
resulting from that halibut QS; and
    (iii) Has an IFQ permit holder's account with an IFQ amount equal to 
or greater than amount of IFQ to be transferred in the Commission 
regulatory area, either Area 2C or Area 3A, for which the transfer of 
IFQ to GAF is requested.
    (2) The person applying to receive or transfer GAF possesses a valid 
charter halibut permit, community charter halibut permit, or military 
charter halibut permit in the Commission regulatory area (Area 2C or 
Area 3A) that corresponds to the IFQ permit area from or to which the 
IFQ will be transferred.
    (3) For a transfer of IFQ to GAF:
    (i) The transfer between IFQ and GAF must not cause the GAF permit 
issued to exceed the GAF use limits in paragraphs (c)(5)(iv)(H)(1) and 
(2) of this section;

[[Page 193]]

    (ii) The transfer must not cause the person applying to transfer IFQ 
to exceed the GAF use limit in paragraph (c)(5)(iv)(H)(3) of this 
section; and
    (iii) There must be no fines, civil penalties, sanctions, or other 
payments due and owing, or outstanding permit sanctions, resulting from 
Federal fishery violations involving either person or permit.
    (4) If a Community Quota Entity (CQE), as defined in Sec. 679.2 of 
this title, submits a ``Community Quota Entity Application for Transfer 
Between Individual Fishing Quota (IFQ) and Guided Angler Fish (GAF),'' 
the application will not be approved until the Regional Administrator 
has determined that:
    (i) The CQE applying to transfer IFQ to GAF is eligible to hold IFQ 
on behalf of the eligible community in Commission regulatory area 2C or 
3A designated in Table 21 to 50 CFR part 679;
    (ii) The CQE applying to transfer IFQ to GAF has received 
notification of approval of eligibility to receive IFQ for that 
community as described in Sec. 679.41(d)(1) of this title;
    (iii) The CQE applying to receive GAF from a Commission regulatory 
area 2C or 3A IFQ permit holder holds one or more charter halibut 
permits or community charter halibut permits for the corresponding area; 
and
    (iv) The CQE applying to transfer between IFQ and GAF has submitted 
a complete annual report(s) as required by Sec. 679.5(t) of this title.
    (E) Conversion between IFQ and GAF--(1) General. An annual 
conversion factor will be calculated to convert between net pounds 
(whole number, no decimal points) of halibut IFQ and number(s) of GAF 
(whole number, no decimal points) for Area 2C and Area 3A. This 
conversion factor will be posted on the NMFS Alaska Region Web site 
before the beginning of each commercial halibut fishing season.
    (2) Conversion calculation. The net pounds of IFQ transferred to or 
from an IFQ permit holder in Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A will be 
equal to the number(s) of GAF transferred to or from the GAF account of 
a GAF permit holder in the corresponding area, multiplied by the 
estimated average net weight determined as follows. For the first 
calendar year after the effective date of this rule, the average net 
weight will be estimated for all halibut harvested by charter vessel 
anglers during the most recent year without a size limit in effect. 
After the first calendar year after the effective date of this rule, the 
average net weight will be estimated from the average length of GAF 
retained in that area during the previous year as reported to RAM via 
the GAF electronic reporting system. If no GAF were harvested in a year, 
the conversion factor will be calculated using the same method as for 
the first calendar year after the effective date of this rule. NMFS will 
round up to the nearest whole number (no decimals) when transferring IFQ 
to GAF and when transferring GAF to IFQ. Expressed algebraically, the 
conversion formula is:
    IFQ net pounds = (number of GAF  average net weight).
    (3) The total number of net pounds converted from unharvested GAF 
and transferred to the IFQ permit holder's account from which it derived 
cannot exceed the total number of net pounds NMFS transferred from the 
IFQ permit holder's account to the GAF permit holder's account for that 
area in the current year.
    (iii) Guided Angler Fish (GAF) permit--(A) General. (1) A GAF permit 
authorizes a charter vessel angler to catch and retain GAF in the 
specified Commission regulatory area, subject to the limits in 
paragraphs (c)(5)(iv)(A) through (K) of this section, during a charter 
vessel fishing trip authorized by the charter halibut permit, community 
charter halibut permit, or military charter halibut permit that is 
designated on the GAF permit.
    (2) A GAF permit authorizes a charter vessel angler to catch and 
retain GAF in the specified Commission regulatory area from the time of 
permit issuance until any of the following occurs:
    (i) The amount of GAF in the GAF permit holder's account is zero;
    (ii) The permit expires at 11:59 p.m. (Alaska local time) on the day 
prior to 15 days prior to the end of the commercial halibut fishing 
season for that year;
    (iii) NMFS replaces the GAF permit with a modified GAF permit 
following

[[Page 194]]

NMFS approval of an Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF; or
    (iv) The GAF permit is revoked or suspended under 15 CFR part 904.
    (3) A GAF permit is issued for use in a Commission regulatory area 
(2C or 3A) to the person who holds a valid charter halibut permit, 
community charter halibut permit, or military charter halibut permit in 
the corresponding Commission regulatory area. Regulations governing 
issuance, transfer, and use of charter halibut permits are located in 
Sec. 300.67.
    (4) A GAF permit is assigned to only one charter halibut permit, 
community charter halibut permit, or military charter halibut permit 
held by the GAF permit holder in the corresponding Commission regulatory 
area (2C or 3A).
    (5) If a charter vessel angler harvests GAF from a charter vessel 
with a charter vessel guide on board, a legible copy of a valid GAF 
permit and the assigned charter halibut permit, community charter 
halibut permit, or military charter halibut permit appropriate for the 
Commission regulatory area (2C or 3A) must be carried by the charter 
vessel operator on board the charter vessel used to harvest GAF at all 
times that such fish are retained on board and must be presented for 
inspection on request of any authorized officer. If a charter vessel 
angler harvests GAF from a charter vessel without a charter vessel guide 
on board, the charter vessel guide must retain the legible copy of the 
GAF permit and the assigned charter halibut permit, community charter 
halibut permit, or military charter halibut permit must be on the 
charter vessel with the charter vessel angler.
    (6) No person may alter, erase, mutilate, or forge a GAF permit or 
document issued under this section (Sec. 300.65(c)(5)(iii)). Any such 
permit or document that has been intentionally altered, erased, 
mutilated, or forged is invalid.
    (7) GAF permit holders must retain GAF permit(s) and associated GAF 
permit logs for two years after the end of the fishing year for which 
the GAF permit(s) was issued and make the GAF permit available for 
inspection upon the request of an authorized officer (as defined in 
Commission regulations).
    (B) Issuance. The Regional Administrator will issue a GAF permit 
upon approval of an Application to Transfer Between IFQ and GAF.
    (C) Transfer. GAF authorized by a GAF permit under this paragraph 
(Sec. 300.65(c)(5)(iii)) are not transferable to another GAF permit, 
except as provided under paragraph (c)(5)(ii) of this section.
    (iv) GAF use restrictions. (A) If a charter vessel angler harvests 
GAF from a charter vessel with a charter vessel guide on board, the 
charter vessel guide must have on board a legible copy of a valid GAF 
permit and the valid charter halibut permit, community charter halibut 
permit, or military charter halibut permit assigned to the GAF permit 
for the area of harvest. If a charter vessel angler harvests GAF from a 
charter vessel without a charter vessel guide on board, the legible copy 
of the valid GAF permit must be on board the same vessel as the charter 
vessel guide, and the original charter halibut permit, community charter 
halibut permit, or military charter halibut permit assigned to the GAF 
permit for the area of harvest must be on the charter vessel with the 
charter vessel angler.
    (B) The total number of GAF on board a vessel cannot exceed the 
number of unharvested GAF in the GAF permit holder's GAF account at the 
time of harvest.
    (C) The total number of halibut retained by a charter vessel angler 
harvesting GAF cannot exceed the sport fishing daily bag limit in effect 
for unguided sport anglers at the time of harvest adopted by the 
Commission as annual management measures and published in the Federal 
Register as required in Sec. 300.62.
    (D) Retained GAF are not subject to any length limit implemented by 
the Commission's annual management measures and published in the Federal 
Register as required in Sec. 300.62, if applicable.
    (E) Each charter vessel angler retaining GAF must comply with the 
halibut possession requirements adopted by the Commission as annual 
management

[[Page 195]]

measures and published in the Federal Register as required in 
Sec. 300.62.
    (F) The charter vessel guide must ensure that each charter vessel 
angler complies with paragraphs (c)(5)(iv)(A) through (E) of this 
section.
    (G) The charter vessel guide must be physically present when the GAF 
halibut is harvested and must immediately remove the tips of the upper 
and lower lobes of the caudal (tail) fin to mark all halibut caught and 
retained as GAF. If the GAF halibut is filleted, the entire carcass, 
with head and tail connected as a single piece, must be retained on 
board the charter vessel on which the halibut was caught until all 
fillets are offloaded.
    (H) Except as provided in paragraph (c)(5)(iv)(I) of this section, 
during the halibut sport fishing season adopted by the Commission as 
annual management measures and published in the Federal Register as 
required in Sec. 300.62, the following GAF use and IFQ transfer limits 
shall apply. GAF use limits do not apply to military charter halibut 
permits.
    (1) No more than 400 GAF may be assigned to a GAF permit that is 
assigned to a charter halibut permit or community charter halibut permit 
endorsed for six (6) or fewer charter vessel anglers in a year,
    (2) No more than 600 GAF may be assigned to a GAF permit that is 
assigned to a charter halibut permit endorsed for more than six (6) 
charter vessel anglers in a year; and
    (3) In Commission regulatory area 2C, a maximum of 1,500 pounds or 
ten (10) percent, whichever is greater, of the start year fishable IFQ 
pounds for an IFQ permit, may be transferred from IFQ to GAF. In 
Commission regulatory area 3A, a maximum of 1,500 pounds or fifteen (15) 
percent, whichever is greater, of the start year fishable IFQ pounds for 
an IFQ permit, may be transferred from IFQ to GAF. Start year fishable 
pounds is the sum of IFQ equivalent pounds, as defined in Sec. 679.2 of 
this title, for an area, derived from QS held, plus or minus adjustments 
made to that amount pursuant to Sec. 679.40(d) and (e) of this title.
    (I) The halibut QS equivalent of net pounds of halibut IFQ that is 
transferred to GAF is included in the computation of halibut QS use caps 
in Sec. 679.42(f)(1)(i) and (ii) of this title.
    (J) A CHP holder receiving GAF from a CQE is subject to 
Sec. 679.42(f)(6) of this title. For a CHP holder who receives GAF from 
a CQE, the net poundage equivalent of all halibut IFQ received as GAF is 
included in the computation of that person's IFQ halibut holdings in 
Sec. 679.42(f)(6) of this title.
    (K) Applicability of GAF use restrictions to CQEs. The GAF use 
restrictions in paragraph (c)(5)(iv)(H) of this section do not apply if:
    (1) A CQE transfers IFQ as GAF to a GAF permit that is assigned to 
one or more charter halibut permits held by that CQE or community 
charter halibut permits held by that CQE;
    (2) A CQE transfers IFQ as GAF to another CQE holding one or more 
charter halibut permits or community charter halibut permits; or
    (3) A CQE transfers IFQ as GAF to a GAF permit that is assigned to a 
charter halibut permit held by an eligible community resident (as 
defined at Sec. 679.2) of that CQE community, as defined for purposes of 
the Catch Sharing Plan for Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A in 
Sec. 679.2 of this title, holding one or more charter halibut permits.
    (d) Charter vessels in Commission regulatory area 2C and 3A--(1) 
General requirements--(i) Logbook submission. For a charter vessel 
fishing trip during which halibut were caught and retained on or after 
the first Monday in April and on or before December 31, Alaska 
Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) Saltwater Sport Fishing Charter Trip 
Logbook data sheets must be submitted to the ADF&G and postmarked or 
received no later than 14 calendar days after the Monday of the fishing 
week (as defined in 50 CFR 300.61) in which the halibut were caught and 
retained. Logbook sheets for a charter vessel fishing trip during which 
halibut were caught and retained on January 1 through the first Sunday 
in April, must be submitted to the ADF&G and postmarked or received no 
later than the second Monday in April.
    (ii) The charter vessel guide is responsible for complying with the 
reporting requirements of this paragraph

[[Page 196]]

(d). The person whose business was assigned an Alaska Department of Fish 
and Game Saltwater Sport Fishing Charter Trip Logbook is responsible for 
ensuring that the charter vessel guide complies with the reporting 
requirements of this paragraph (d).
    (2) Retention and inspection of logbook. A person who is required to 
provide information pursuant to paragraph (d)(4) of this section, or 
whose business was assigned an Alaska Department of Fish and Game 
Saltwater Sport Fishing Charter Trip Logbook and whose charter vessel 
anglers retain halibut is required to:
    (i) Retain all logbook data pages showing halibut harvest for 2 
years after the end of the fishing year for which the logbook was 
issued, and
    (ii) Make the logbook available for inspection upon the request of 
an authorized officer (as defined in Commission regulations).
    (3) Charter vessel guide and crew restriction in Commission 
regulatory areas 2C and 3A. A charter vessel guide, charter vessel 
operator, or crew member may not catch and retain halibut during a 
charter vessel fishing trip in Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A, 
except that charter vessel operators who are charter vessel anglers may 
catch and retain halibut during a charter vessel fishing trip if the 
charter vessel guide is on a separate charter vessel.
    (4) Recordkeeping and reporting requirements in Commission 
regulatory area 2C and 3A--(i) General requirements. Each charter vessel 
angler and charter vessel guide in Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A 
must comply with the following recordkeeping and reporting requirements, 
except as specified in paragraph (d)(4)(iii)(C) of this section, by the 
end of the calendar day or by the end of the charter vessel fishing 
trip, whichever comes first, unless otherwise specified.
    (ii) Logbook reporting requirements--(A) Charter vessel angler 
signature requirement. Each charter vessel angler who retains halibut 
caught in Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A must acknowledge that his 
or her name, license number (if required), and number of halibut 
retained (kept) are recorded correctly by signing the Alaska Department 
of Fish and Game Saltwater Charter Logbook data sheet on the line that 
corresponds to the angler's information.
    (B) Charter vessel guide requirements. If halibut were caught and 
retained in Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A, the charter vessel 
guide must record the following information (see paragraphs 
(d)(4)(ii)(B)(1) through (10) of this section) in the Alaska Department 
of Fish and Game Saltwater Charter Logbook:
    (1) Guide license number. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game 
sport fishing guide license or registration number held by the charter 
vessel guide who certified the logbook data sheet.
    (2) Date. Month and day for each charter vessel fishing trip taken. 
A separate logbook data sheet is required for each charter vessel 
fishing trip if two or more trips are taken on the same day. A separate 
logbook data sheet is required for each calendar day that halibut are 
caught and retained during a multi-day trip. A separate logbook sheet is 
required if more than one charter halibut permit is used on a trip.
    (3) Charter halibut permit (CHP) number. The NMFS CHP number(s) 
authorizing charter vessel anglers on that charter vessel fishing trip 
to catch and retain halibut.
    (4) Guided Angler Fish (GAF) permit number. The NMFS GAF permit 
number(s) authorizing charter vessel anglers on that charter vessel 
fishing trip to harvest GAF.
    (5) Statistical area. The primary Alaska Department of Fish and Game 
statistical area code in which halibut were caught and retained.
    (6) Angler sport fishing license number and printed name. Before a 
charter vessel fishing trip begins, record the first and last name of 
each paying or non-paying charter vessel angler on board that will fish 
for halibut. For each angler required to be licensed, record the Alaska 
Sport Fishing License number for the current year, resident permanent 
license number, or disabled veteran license number. For youth anglers 
not required to be licensed, record the word ``youth'' in place of the 
license number.

[[Page 197]]

    (7) Number of halibut retained. For each charter vessel angler, 
record the total number of non-GAF halibut caught and kept.
    (8) Number of GAF retained. For each charter vessel angler, record 
the total number of GAF kept.
    (9) Guide signature. The charter vessel guide acknowledges that the 
recorded information is correct by signing the logbook data sheet.
    (10) Angler signature. The charter vessel guide is responsible for 
ensuring that charter vessel anglers that retain halibut comply with the 
signature requirements at paragraph (d)(4)(ii)(A) of this section.
    (iii) GAF reporting requirements--(A) General. (1) Upon retention of 
a GAF halibut, the charter vessel guide must immediately record on the 
GAF permit log (on the back of the GAF permit) the date that the fish 
was caught and retained and the total length of that fish as described 
in paragraphs (d)(4)(iii)(D)(5) and (7) of this section. If GAF halibut 
are retained on a charter vessel without a charter vessel guide on 
board, the charter vessel guide must also comply with the reporting 
requirements in paragraph (d)(4)(iii)(A)(5) of this section.
    (2) In addition to the recordkeeping and reporting requirements in 
paragraphs (d)(4)(i) and (ii) of this section, a GAF permit holder must 
use the NMFS-approved electronic reporting system on the Alaska Region 
Web site at http://alaskafisheries.noaa.gov/ to submit a GAF landings 
report.
    (3) A GAF permit holder must submit a GAF landings report by 11:59 
p.m. (Alaska local time) on the last calendar day of a fishing trip for 
each day on which a charter vessel angler retained GAF authorized by the 
GAF permit held by that permit holder.
    (4) If a GAF permit holder is unable to submit a GAF landings report 
due to hardware, software, or Internet failure for a period longer than 
the required reporting time, or a correction must be made to information 
already submitted, the GAF permit holder must contact NOAA Office of Law 
Enforcement, Juneau, AK, at 800-304-4846 (Select Option 1).
    (5) If a GAF is retained on a charter vessel without a charter 
vessel guide on board, the charter vessel guide must immediately record 
in the ADF&G Saltwater Charter Logbook the GAF permit number under which 
GAF were caught and retained, and the number of GAF kept under the 
corresponding charter vessel angler's name.
    (B) Electronic Reporting of GAF. A GAF permit holder must obtain, at 
his or her own expense, the technology to submit GAF landing reports to 
the NMFS-approved reporting system for GAF landings.
    (C) NMFS-Approved Electronic Reporting System. The GAF permit holder 
agrees to the following terms (see paragraphs (d)(4)(iii)(C)(1) through 
(3) of this section):
    (1) To use any NMFS online service or reporting system only for 
authorized purposes;
    (2) To safeguard the NMFS Person Identification Number and password 
to prevent their use by unauthorized persons; and
    (3) To accept the responsibility of and acknowledge compliance with 
Sec. 300.4(a) and (b), Sec. 300.65(d), and Sec. 300.66(p) and (q).
    (D) Information entered for each GAF caught and retained. The GAF 
permit holder must enter the following information for each charter 
vessel fishing trip in which GAF were retained under the authorization 
of the permit holder's GAF permit into the NMFS-approved electronic 
reporting system (see paragraphs (d)(4)(iii)(D)(1) through (9) of this 
section) by 11:59 p.m. (Alaska local time) on the last day of a charter 
fishing trip in which a charter vessel angler retained GAF:
    (1) Logbook number from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game 
Saltwater Sport Fishing Charter Trip Logbook.
    (2) Vessel identification number for vessel on which GAF were caught 
and retained:
    (i) State of Alaska issued boat registration (AK number), or
    (ii) U.S. Coast Guard documentation number.
    (3) GAF permit number under which GAF were caught and retained.
    (4) Alaska Department of Fish and Game sport fishing guide license 
or

[[Page 198]]

registration number held by the charter vessel guide who certified the 
logbook data sheet.
    (5) Date that GAF was caught and retained.
    (6) Number of GAF caught and retained.
    (7) Length of each GAF caught and retained. Halibut lengths are 
measured in inches in a straight line from the anterior-most tip of the 
lower jaw with the mouth closed to the extreme end of the middle of the 
tail.
    (8) Community charter halibut permit only: Community or Port where 
the charter vessel fishing trip began (i.e., where charter vessel 
anglers boarded the vessel).
    (9) Community charter halibut permit only: Community or Port where 
the charter vessel fishing trip ended (i.e., where charter vessel 
anglers or fish were offloaded from the vessel).
    (E) Properly reported landing. (1) The GAF permit holder is 
responsible for ensuring that all GAF harvested on board a vessel are 
debited from the GAF permit holder's account under which the GAF were 
retained.
    (2) A GAF landing confirmation number issued by the NMFS-approved 
electronic reporting system and recorded by the GAF permit holder on the 
GAF permit log used to record the dates and lengths of retained GAF, as 
required in paragraph (d)(4)(iii)(A)(1) of this section, constitutes 
confirmation that the GAF permit holder's GAF landing is properly 
reported and the GAF permit holder's account is properly debited.
    (3) Instructions for correcting a submitted GAF landing electronic 
report are at (d)(4)(iii)(A)(4) of this section.
    (5) Carcass retention requirement for size-restricted halibut. If a 
size-restricted halibut is filleted on board the charter vessel, the 
entire carcass, with head and tail connected as a single piece, must be 
retained on board the charter vessel on which it was caught until all 
fillets are offloaded.
    (e) The Local Area Management Plan (LAMP) for Sitka Sound provides 
guidelines for participation in the halibut fishery in Sitka Sound.
    (1) For purposes of this section, Sitka Sound means (See Figure 1 to 
subpart E):
    (i) With respect to paragraph (e)(2) of this section, that part of 
the Commission regulatory area 2C that is enclosed on the north and 
east:
    (A) By a line from Kruzof Island at 572030" N. lat., 
1354510" W. long. to Chichagof Island at 572203" N. 
lat., 1354300" W. long., and
    (B) By a line from Chichagof Island at 572235" N. lat., 
1354118" W. long. to Baranof Island at 572217" N. 
lat., 1354057" W. long.; and
    (C) That is enclosed on the south and west by a line from Cape 
Edgecumbe at 565954" N. lat., 1355127" W. long. to 
Vasilief Rock at 564856" N. lat., 1353230" W. long., 
and
    (D) To the green day marker in Dorothy Narrows at 564917" 
N. lat., 1352245" W. long. to Baranof Island at 
564917" N. lat., 1352236" W. long.
    (ii) With respect to paragraphs (e)(3), (e)(4), and (e)(5) of this 
section, that part of the Commission Regulatory Area 2C that is enclosed 
on the north and east:
    (A) By a line from Kruzof Island at 572030" N. lat., 
1354510" W. long. to Chichagof Island at 572203" N. 
lat., 1354300" W. long., and
    (B) A line from Chichagof Island at 572235" N. lat., 
1354118" W. long. to Baranof Island at 572217" N. 
lat., 1354057" W. lat.; and
    (C) That is enclosed on the south and west by a line from Sitka 
Point at 565923" N. lat., 1354934" W. long., to 
Hanus Point at 565155" N. lat., 1353030" W. long.,
    (D) To the green day marker in Dorothy Narrows at 564917" 
N. lat., 1352245" W. long. to Baranof Island at 
564917" N. lat., 1352236" W. long.
    (2) A person using a vessel greater than 35 ft (10.7 m) in overall 
length, as defined at 50 CFR 300.61, is prohibited from fishing for IFQ 
halibut with setline gear, as defined at 50 CFR 300.61, within Sitka 
Sound as defined in paragraph (e)(1)(i) of this section.
    (3) A person using a vessel less than or equal to 35 ft (10.7 m) in 
overall length, as defined at 50 CFR 300.61:
    (i) Is prohibited from fishing for IFQ halibut with setline gear 
within Sitka Sound, as defined in paragraph (e)(1)(ii) of this section, 
from June 1 through August 31; and

[[Page 199]]

    (ii) Is prohibited, during the remainder of the designated IFQ 
season, from retaining more than 2,000 lb (0.91 mt) of IFQ halibut 
within Sitka Sound, as defined in paragraph (e)(1)(ii) of this section, 
per IFQ fishing trip, as defined in 50 CFR 300.61.
    (4) No charter vessel shall engage in sport fishing, as defined at 
Sec. 300.61, for halibut within Sitka Sound, as defined in paragraph 
(e)(1)(ii) of this section, from June 1 through August 31.
    (i) No charter vessel shall retain halibut caught while engaged in 
sport fishing, as defined at Sec. 300.61, for other species, within 
Sitka Sound, as defined in paragraph (e)(1)(ii) of this section, from 
June 1 through August 31.
    (ii) Notwithstanding paragraphs (e)(4) and (e)(4)(i) of this 
section, halibut harvested outside Sitka Sound, as defined in paragraph 
(e)(1)(ii) of this section, may be retained onboard a charter vessel 
engaged in sport fishing, as defined in Sec. 300.61, for other species 
within Sitka Sound, as defined in paragraph (e)(1)(ii) of this section, 
from June 1 through August 31.
    (5) Setline gear may not be used in a 4 nm radius extending south 
from Low Island at 5700.70 N. lat., 13536.57 W. 
long. within Sitka Sound, as defined in paragraph (e)(1)(ii) of this 
section, from June 1 through August 31.
    (f) Sitka Pinnacles Marine Reserve. (1) For purposes of this 
paragraph (f), the Sitka Pinnacles Marine Reserve means an area totaling 
2.5 square nm off Cape Edgecumbe, defined by straight lines connecting 
the following points in a counterclockwise manner:

    5655.5 N lat., 13554.0 W long;
    5657.0 N lat., 13554.0 W long;
    5657.0 N lat., 13557.0 W long;
    5655.5 N lat., 13557.0 W long.

    (2) No person shall engage in commercial, sport or subsistence 
fishing, as defined at Sec. 300.61, for halibut within the Sitka 
Pinnacles Marine Reserve.
    (3) No person shall anchor a vessel within the Sitka Pinnacles 
Marine Reserve if halibut is on board.
    (g) Subsistence fishing in and off Alaska. No person shall engage in 
subsistence fishing for halibut unless that person meets the 
requirements in paragraphs (g)(1), (g)(2), or (g)(3) of this section.
    (1) A person is eligible to harvest subsistence halibut if he or she 
is a rural resident of a community with customary and traditional uses 
of halibut listed in the following table:

                       Halibut Regulatory Area 2C
------------------------------------------------------------------------
              Rural Community                     Organized Entity
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Angoon....................................  Municipality
Coffman Cove..............................  Municipality
Craig.....................................  Municipality
Edna Bay..................................  Census Designated Place
Elfin Cove................................  Census Designated Place
Gustavus..................................  Census Designated Place
Haines....................................  Municipality
Hollis....................................  Census Designated Place
Hoonah....................................  Municipality
Hydaburg..................................  Municipality
Hyder.....................................  Census Designated Place
Kake......................................  Municipality
Kasaan....................................  Municipality
Klawock...................................  Municipality
Klukwan...................................  Census Designated Place
Metlakatla................................  Census Designated Place
Meyers Chuck..............................  Census Designated Place
Naukati...................................  Municipality
Pelican...................................  Municipality
Petersburg................................  Municipality
Point Baker...............................  Census Designated Place
Port Alexander............................  Municipality
Port Protection...........................  Census Designated Place
Saxman....................................  Municipality
Sitka.....................................  Municipality
Skagway...................................  Municipality
Tenakee Springs...........................  Municipality
Thorne Bay................................  Municipality
Whale Pass................................  Census Designated Place
Wrangell..................................  Municipality
------------------------------------------------------------------------


                       Halibut Regulatory Area 3A
------------------------------------------------------------------------
              Rural Community                     Organized Entity
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Akhiok....................................  Municipality
Chenega Bay...............................  Census Designated Place
Cordova...................................  Municipality
Karluk....................................  Census Designated Place
Kodiak City...............................  Municipality
Larsen Bay................................  Municipality
Nanwalek..................................  Census Designated Place
Old Harbor................................  Municipality
Ouzinkie..................................  Municipality
Port Graham...............................  Census Designated Place
Port Lions................................  Municipality
Seldovia..................................  Municipality
Tatitlek..................................  Census Designated Place
Yakutat...................................  Municipality
------------------------------------------------------------------------


                       Halibut Regulatory Area 3B
------------------------------------------------------------------------
              Rural Community                     Organized Entity
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Chignik Bay...............................  Municipality
Chignik Lagoon............................  Census Designated Place
Chignik Lake..............................  Census Designated Place
Cold Bay..................................  Municipality
False Pass................................  Municipality
Ivanof Bay................................  Census Designated Place
King Cove.................................  Municipality
Nelson Lagoon.............................  Census Designated Place
Perryville................................  Census Designated Place

[[Page 200]]

 
Sand Point................................  Municipality
------------------------------------------------------------------------


                       Halibut Regulatory Area 4A
------------------------------------------------------------------------
              Rural Community                     Organized Entity
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Akutan....................................  Municipality
Nikolski..................................  Census Designated Place
Unalaska..................................  Municipality
------------------------------------------------------------------------


                       Halibut Regulatory Area 4B
------------------------------------------------------------------------
              Rural Community                     Organized Entity
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Adak......................................  Census Designated Place
Atka......................................  Municipality
------------------------------------------------------------------------


                       Halibut Regulatory Area 4C
------------------------------------------------------------------------
              Rural Community                     Organized Entity
------------------------------------------------------------------------
St. George................................  Municipality
St. Paul..................................  Municipality
------------------------------------------------------------------------


                       Halibut Regulatory Area 4D
------------------------------------------------------------------------
              Rural Community                     Organized Entity
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Gambell...................................  Municipality
Savoonga..................................  Municipality
Diomede (Inalik)..........................  Municipality
------------------------------------------------------------------------


                       Halibut Regulatory Area 4E
------------------------------------------------------------------------
              Rural Community                     Organized Entity
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Alakanuk..................................  Municipality
Aleknegik.................................  Municipality
Bethel....................................  Municipality
Brevig Mission............................  Municipality
Chefornak.................................  Municipality
Chevak....................................  Municipality
Clark's Point.............................  Municipality
Council...................................  Census Designated Place
Dillingham................................  Municipality
Eek.......................................  Municipality
Egegik....................................  Municipality
Elim......................................  Municipality
Emmonak...................................  Municipality
Golovin...................................  Municipality
Goodnews Bay..............................  Municipality
Hooper Bay................................  Municipality
King Salmon...............................  Census Designated Place
Kipnuk....................................  Census Designated Place
Kongiganak................................  Census Designated Place
Kotlik....................................  Municipality
Koyuk.....................................  Municipality
Kwigillingok..............................  Census Designated Place
Levelock..................................  Census Designated Place
Manokotak.................................  Municipality
Mekoryak..................................  Municipality
Naknek....................................  Census Designated Place
Napakiak..................................  Municipality
Napaskiak.................................  Municipality
Newtok....................................  Census Designated Place
Nightmute.................................  Municipality
Nome......................................  Municipality
Oscarville................................  Census Designated Place
Pilot Point...............................  Municipality
Platinum..................................  Municipality
Port Heiden...............................  Municipality
Quinhagak.................................  Municipality
Scammon Bay...............................  Municipality
Shaktoolik................................  Municipality
Sheldon Point (Nunam Iqua)................  Municipality
Shishmaref................................  Municipality
Solomon...................................  Census Designated Place
South Naknek..............................  Census Designated Place
St. Michael...............................  Municipality
Stebbins..................................  Municipality
Teller....................................  Municipality
Togiak....................................  Municipality
Toksook Bay...............................  Municipality
Tuntutuliak...............................  Census Designated Place
Tununak...................................  Census Designated Place
Twin Hills................................  Census Designated Place
Ugashik...................................  Census Designated Place
Unalakleet................................  Municipality
Wales.....................................  Municipality
White Mountain............................  Municipality
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (2) A person is eligible to harvest subsistence halibut if he or she 
is a member of an Alaska Native tribe with customary and traditional 
uses of halibut listed in the following table:

                       Halibut Regulatory Area 2C
------------------------------------------------------------------------
      Place with Tribal Headquarters           Organized Tribal Entity
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Angoon....................................  Angoon Community Association
Craig.....................................  Craig Community Association
Haines....................................  Chilkoot Indian Association
Hoonah....................................  Hoonah Indian Association
Hydaburg..................................  Hydaburg Cooperative
                                             Association
Juneau....................................  Aukquan Traditional Council
                                            Central Council Tlingit and
                                             Haida Indian Tribes
                                            Douglas Indian Association
Kake......................................  Organized Village of Kake
Kasaan....................................  Organized Village of Kasaan
Ketchikan.................................  Ketchikan Indian Corporation
Klawock...................................  Klawock Cooperative
                                             Association
Klukwan...................................  Chilkat Indian Village
Metlakatla................................  Metlakatla Indian Community,
                                             Annette Island Reserve
Petersburg................................  Petersburg Indian
                                             Association
Saxman....................................  Organized Village of Saxman
Sitka.....................................  Sitka Tribe of Alaska
Skagway...................................  Skagway Village
Wrangell..................................  Wrangell Cooperative
                                             Association
------------------------------------------------------------------------


                       Halibut Regulatory Area 3A
------------------------------------------------------------------------
      Place with Tribal Headquarters           Organized Tribal Entity
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Akhiok....................................  Native Village of Akhiok
Chenega Bay...............................  Native Village of Chanega
Cordova...................................  Native Village of Eyak
Karluk....................................  Native Village of Karluk

[[Page 201]]

 
Kenai-Soldotna............................  Kenaitze Indian Tribe
                                            Village of Salamatoff
Kodiak City...............................  Lesnoi Village (Woody
                                             Island)
                                            Native Village of Afognak
                                            Shoonaq' Tribe of Kodiak
Larsen Bay................................  Native Village of Larsen Bay
Nanwalek..................................  Native Village of Nanwalek
Ninilchik.................................  Ninilchik Village
Old Harbor................................  Village of Old Harbor
Ouzinkie..................................  Native Village of Ouzinkie
Port Graham...............................  Native Village of Port
                                             Graham
Port Lions................................  Native Village of Port Lions
Seldovia..................................  Seldovia Village Tribe
Tatitlek..................................  Native Village of Tatitlek
Wasilla...................................  Village of Kanatak
Yakutat...................................  Yakutat Tlingit Tribe
------------------------------------------------------------------------


                       Halibut Regulatory Area 3B
------------------------------------------------------------------------
      Place with Tribal Headquarters           Organized Tribal Entity
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Chignik Bay...............................  Native Village of Chignik
Chignik Lagoon............................  Native Village of Chignik
                                             Lagoon
Chignik Lake..............................  Chignik Lake Village
False Pass................................  Native Village of False Pass
Ivanof Bay................................  Ivanoff Bay Village
King Cove.................................  Agdaagux Tribe of King Cove
                                            Native Village of Belkofski
Nelson Lagoon.............................  Native Village of Nelson
                                             Lagoon
Perryville................................  Native Village of Perryville
Sand Point................................  Pauloff Harbor Village
                                            Native Village of Unga
                                            Qagan Tayagungin Tribe of
                                             Sand Point Village
------------------------------------------------------------------------


                       Halibut Regulatory Area 4A
------------------------------------------------------------------------
      Place with Tribal Headquarters           Organized Tribal Entity
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Akutan....................................  Native Village of Akutan
Nikolski..................................  Native Village of Nikolski
Unalaska..................................  Qawalingin Tribe of Unalaska
------------------------------------------------------------------------


                       Halibut Regulatory Area 4B
------------------------------------------------------------------------
      Place with Tribal Headquarters           Organized Tribal Entity
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Atka......................................  Native Village of Atka
------------------------------------------------------------------------


                       Halibut Regulatory Area 4C
------------------------------------------------------------------------
      Place with Tribal Headquarters           Organized Tribal Entity
------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
St. George................................  Pribilof Islands Aleut
St. Paul..................................   Communities of St. Paul
                                             Island and St. George
                                             Island
------------------------------------------------------------------------


                       Halibut Regulatory Area 4D
------------------------------------------------------------------------
      Place with Tribal Headquarters           Organized Tribal Entity
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Gambell...................................  Native Village of Gambell
Savoonga..................................  Native Village of Savoonga
Diomede (Inalik)..........................  Native Village of Diomede
                                             (Inalik)
------------------------------------------------------------------------


                       Halibut Regulatory Area 4E
------------------------------------------------------------------------
      Place with Tribal Headquarters           Organized Tribal Entity
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Alakanuk..................................  Village of Alakanuk
Aleknagik.................................  Native Village of Aleknagik
Bethel....................................  Orutsararmuit Native Village
Brevig Mission............................  Native Village of Brevig
                                             Mission
Chefornak.................................  Village of Chefornak
Chevak....................................  Chevak Native Village
Clark's Point.............................  Village of Clark's Point
Council...................................  Native Village of Council
Dillingham................................  Native Village of Dillingham
                                            Native Village of Ekuk
                                            Native Village of Kanakanak
Eek.......................................  Native Village of Eek
Egegik....................................  Egegik Village
Elim......................................  Native Village of Elim
Emmonak...................................  Chuloonawick Native Village
                                            Emmonak Village
Golovin...................................  Chinik Eskimo Community
Goodnews Bay..............................  Native Village of Goodnews
                                             Bay
Hooper Bay................................  Native Village of Hooper Bay
                                            Native Village of Paimiut
King Salmon...............................  King Salmon Tribal Council
Kipnuk....................................  Native Village of Kipnuk
Kongiganak................................  Native Village of Kongiganak
Kotlik....................................  Native Village of Hamilton
                                            Village of Bill Moore's
                                             Slough
                                            Village of Kotlik
Koyuk.....................................  Native Village of Koyuk
Kwigillingok..............................  Native Village of
                                             Kwigillingok
Levelock..................................  Levelock Village
Manokotak.................................  Manokotak Village
Mekoryak..................................  Native Village of Mekoryak
Naknek....................................  Naknek Native Village
Napakiak..................................  Native Village of Napakiak
Napaskiak.................................  Native Village of Napaskiak
Newtok....................................  Newtok Village
Nightmute.................................  Native Village of Nightmute
                                            Umkumiute Native Village
Nome......................................  King Island Native Community
                                            Nome Eskimo Community
Oscarville................................  Oscarville Traditional
                                             Village
Pilot Point...............................  Native Village of Pilot
                                             Point
Platinum..................................  Platinum Traditional Village
Port Heiden...............................  Native Village of Port
                                             Heiden
Quinhagak.................................  Native Village of Kwinhagak
Scammon Bay...............................  Native Village of Scammon
                                             Bay
Shaktoolik................................  Native Village of Shaktoolik
Sheldon Point (Nunam Iqua)................  Native Village of Sheldon's
                                             Point
Shishmaref................................  Native Village of Shishmaref
Solomon...................................  Village of Solomon
South Naknek..............................  South Naknek Village
St. Michael...............................  Native Village of Saint
                                             Michael
Stebbins..................................  Stebbins Community
                                             Association
Teller....................................  Native Village of Mary's
                                             Igloo
                                            Native Village of Teller
Togiak....................................  Traditional Village of
                                             Togiak
Toksook Bay...............................  Native Village of Toksook
                                             Bay
Tuntutuliak...............................  Native Village of
                                             Tuntutuliak
Tununak...................................  Native Village of Tununak
Twin Hills................................  Twin Hills Village

[[Page 202]]

 
Ugashik...................................  Ugashik Village
Unalakleet................................  Native Village of Unalakleet
Wales.....................................  Native Village of Wales
White Mountain............................  Native Village of White
                                             Mountain
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (3) A person is eligible to harvest subsistence halibut if he or she 
is a rural resident in one of the rural areas of Alaska described as 
follows:
    (i) Southeast Alaska east of 141 W. long., except for the land 
areas of the Ketchikan Gateway Borough as described at paragraph 
(g)(4)(i) of this section, the land areas of the City and Borough of 
Juneau, and the Ketchikan and Juneau non-subsistence marine waters areas 
as defined in paragraphs (h)(3)(i) and (h)(3)(ii) of this section (see 
figures 2 and 3 to this subpart E).
    (ii) The Alaska Peninsula, Aleutian Islands, Kodiak Island 
Archipelago, and the area south of the northern boundary of the Bristol 
Bay Borough and south of 5839.2 N. lat. (see figures 5, 6, and 
7 to this subpart E).
    (iii) Nelson, Nunivak, and Saint Lawrence Islands (see figure 6 to 
this subpart E).
    (iv) All other areas of Alaska within ten statute miles of mean high 
water on the Bering Sea and Pacific Ocean coasts, south of Cape 
Espenberg, including along the Kuskokwim River to Bethel, and that are 
not specified as non-rural land or water areas as defined in paragraph 
(g)(4) of this section (see figures 4, 5, 6, and 7 to this subpart E).
    (4) Non-rural areas consist of the non-subsistence marine waters 
areas defined in paragraph (h)(3) of this section and the land areas of 
the following cities and boroughs for purposes of the subsistence 
fishery for Pacific halibut in waters in and off Alaska:
    (i) The Ketchikan Gateway Borough on May 18, 2008. This area 
encompasses all those islands bounded on the east, north, and west by 
Behm Canal, Behm Narrows, and Clarence Strait to its junction with 
Nichols Passage, and on the south by Nichols and Revillagigedo Channel 
to its junction with Behm Canal. The designated boundaries extend to the 
center line of Behm Canal, Behm Narrows, Clarence Strait, Nichols 
Passage, and Revillagigedo Channel, and include all the area of 
Revillagigedo, Gravina, Pennock, Betton, Grant and other Clover Passage 
and Naha Bay Islands, Hassler, Gedney, Black, Smeaton, Manzanita, 
Rudyerd, and Bold Islands, and all other offshore and adjacent islands 
and inlets thereto (see figure 2 to this subpart E).
    (ii) The City and Borough of Juneau (see figure 3 to this subpart 
E).
    (iii) The Greater Anchorage Area Borough (see figures 4 and 5 to 
this subpart E).
    (iv) The Matanuska-Susitna Borough (see figure 5 to this subpart E).
    (v) The Kenai Peninsula Borough excluding the area of the Seldovia 
Census Designated Place, the area south and west of that place, and the 
area south and west of a line that runs from 5927.5 N. lat., 
15131.7 W. long. to 5912.5 N. lat., 
15118.5 W. long (see figure 5 to this subpart E).
    (vi) The City of Valdez (see figures 4 and 5 to this subpart E).
    (h) Limitations on subsistence fishing. Subsistence fishing for 
halibut may be conducted only by persons who qualify for such fishing 
pursuant to paragraph (g) of this section and who hold a valid 
subsistence halibut registration certificate in that person's name 
issued by NMFS pursuant to paragraph (i) of this section, provided that 
such fishing is consistent with the following limitations.
    (1) Subsistence fishing is limited to setline gear and hand-held 
gear, including longline, handline, rod and reel, spear, jig and hand-
troll gear.
    (i) Subsistence fishing gear set or retrieved from a vessel while 
engaged in subsistence fishing for halibut must not have more than the 
allowable number of hooks per vessel, or per person registered in 
accordance with paragraph (i) of this section and aboard the vessel, 
whichever is less, according to the regulatory area and permit type 
indicated in the following table:

[[Page 203]]



----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
           Regulatory Area                         Permit Type                        Gear Restrictions
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2C--Except Sitka Sound, and           SHARC...............................  30 hooks per vessel
 Ketchikan and Juneau non-
 subsistence marine waters areas
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Ceremonial Permit...................  30 hooks per vessel
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Educational Permit..................  30 hooks per vessel
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Community Harvest Permit............  30 hooks per person onboard up to 90
                                                                             hooks per vessel
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2C--Sitka Sound                       SHARC...............................  September 1 through May 31: 30 hooks
                                                                             per vessel
                                                                           -------------------------------------
                                        ..................................  June 1 through August 31: 15 hooks
                                                                             per vessel; no power hauling
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Ceremonial Permit...................  September 1 through May 31: 30 hooks
                                                                             per vessel
                                                                           -------------------------------------
                                        ..................................  June 1 through August 31: fishing
                                                                             under Ceremonial Permit not allowed
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Educational Permit..................  30 hooks per vessel
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Community Harvest Permit............  fishing under Community Harvest
                                                                             Permit not allowed
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2C--Ketchikan and Juneau non-         SHARC...............................  general subsistence halibut fishing
 subsistence marine waters areas                                             not allowed
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Ceremonial Permit...................  30 hooks per vessel
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Educational Permit..................  30 hooks per vessel
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Community Harvest Permit............  fishing under Community Harvest
                                                                             Permit not allowed
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
3A--Except Chiniak Bay, and           SHARC...............................  30 hooks per person onboard up to 90
 Anchorage-Matsu-Kenai and Valdez                                            hooks per vessel
 non-subsistence marine waters areas
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Ceremonial Permit...................  30 hooks per person onboard up to 90
                                                                             hooks per vessel
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Educational Permit..................  30 hooks per person onboard up to 90
                                                                             hooks per vessel
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Community Harvest Permit............  30 hooks per person onboard up to 90
                                                                             hooks per vessel
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
3A--Chiniak Bay                       SHARC...............................  30 hooks per person onboard up to 60
                                                                             hooks per vessel
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Ceremonial Permit...................  30 hooks per person onboard up to 90
                                                                             hooks per vessel
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Educational Permit..................  30 hooks per person onboard up to 90
                                                                             hooks per vessel
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Community Harvest Permit............  30 hooks per person onboard up to 90
                                                                             hooks per vessel
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
3A--Anchorage-Matsu-Kenai and Valdez  SHARC...............................  general subsistence halibut fishing
 non-subsistence marine waters areas                                         not allowed
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Ceremonial Permit...................  30 hooks per person onboard up to 90
                                                                             hooks per vessel
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Educational Permit..................  30 hooks per person onboard up to 90
                                                                             hooks per vessel
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Community Harvest Permit............  fishing under Community Harvest
                                                                             Permit not allowed
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
3B                                    SHARC...............................  30 hooks per person onboard up to 90
                                                                             hooks per vessel
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
4A and 4B                             SHARC...............................  30 hooks per person onboard up to 90
                                                                             hooks per vessel
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
4C, 4D, and 4E                        SHARC...............................  no hook limit
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (ii) All setline gear marker buoys carried on board or used by any 
vessel regulated under this section shall be marked with the following: 
first initial, last name, and address (street,

[[Page 204]]

city, and state), followed by the letter ``S'' to indicate that it is 
used to harvest subsistence halibut.
    (iii) Markings on setline marker buoys shall be in characters at 
least 4 inches (10.16 cm) in height and 0.5 inch (1.27 cm) in width in a 
contrasting color visible above the water line and shall be maintained 
so the markings are clearly visible.
    (2) The retention of subsistence halibut is limited per person 
eligible to conduct subsistence fishing for halibut and onboard the 
vessel according to the following table:

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
           Regulatory Area                         Permit Type                        Retention Limits
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2C--Except Sitka Sound, and           SHARC...............................  20 halibut per day per vessel and in
 Ketchikan and Juneau non-                                                   possession
 subsistence marine waters areas
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Ceremonial Permit...................  25 halibut per permit
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Educational Permit..................  25 halibut per permit
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Community Harvest Permit............  no daily or possession limit
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2C--Sitka Sound                       SHARC...............................  September 1 through May 31: 10
                                                                             halibut per day per vessel and in
                                                                             possession
                                                                           -------------------------------------
                                        ..................................  June 1 through August 31: 5 halibut
                                                                             per day per vessel and in
                                                                             possession
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Ceremonial Permit...................  September 1 through May 31: 25
                                                                             halibut per permit
                                                                           -------------------------------------
                                        ..................................  June 1 through August 31: fishing
                                                                             under Ceremonial Permit not allowed
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Educational Permit..................  25 halibut per permit
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Community Harvest Permit............  fishing under Community Harvest
                                                                             Permit not allowed
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2C--Ketchikan and Juneau non-         SHARC...............................  general subsistence halibut fishing
 subsistence marine waters areas                                             not allowed
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Ceremonial Permit...................  25 halibut per permit
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Educational Permit..................  25 halibut per permit
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Community Harvest Permit............  fishing under Community Harvest
                                                                             Permit not allowed
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
3A--Including Chiniak Bay, but        SHARC...............................  20 halibut per person per day and in
 excluding Anchorage-Matsu-Kenai and                                         possession
 Valdez non-subsistence marine
 waters areas
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Ceremonial Permit...................  25 halibut per permit
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Educational Permit..................  25 halibut per permit
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Community Harvest Permit............  no daily or possession limit
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
3A--Anchorage-Matsu-Kenai and Valdez  SHARC...............................  general subsistence halibut fishing
 non-subsistence marine waters areas                                         not allowed
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Ceremonial Permit...................  25 halibut per permit
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Educational Permit..................  25 halibut per permit
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                      Community Harvest Permit............  fishing under Community Harvest
                                                                             Permit not allowed
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
3B                                    SHARC...............................  20 halibut per person per day and in
                                                                             possession
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
4A and 4B                             SHARC...............................  20 halibut per person per day; no
                                                                             possession limit
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
4C, 4D, and 4E                        SHARC...............................  no daily or possession limit
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (3) Subsistence fishing may be conducted in any waters in and off 
Alaska except in the four non-subsistence marine waters areas defined as 
follows:
    (i) Ketchikan non-subsistence marine waters area in Commission 
regulatory area 2C (see Figure 2 to subpart E) is defined as those 
waters between a line from Caamano Point at 5529.90 N. lat., 
13158.25 W. long. to Point Higgins at 5527.42 N. 
lat., 13150.00 W. long. and a point at 5511.78 N. 
lat., 13105.13 W. long., located on Point Sykes to a

[[Page 205]]

point at 5512.22 N. lat., 13105.70 W. long., located 
one-half mile northwest of Point Sykes to Point Alava at 
5511.54 N. lat., 13111.00 W. long. and within one 
mile of the mainland and the Gravina and Revillagigedo Island 
shorelines, including within one mile of the Cleveland Peninsula 
shoreline and east of the longitude of Niblack Point at 
13207.23 W. long., and north of the latitude of the 
southernmost tip of Mary Island at 5502.66 N. lat.;
    (ii) Juneau non-subsistence marine waters area in Commission 
regulatory area 2C (see Figure 3 to subpart E) is defined as those 
waters of Stephens Passage and contiguous waters north of the latitude 
of Midway Island Light (5750.21 N. lat.), including the waters 
of Taku Inlet, Port Snettisham, Saginaw Channel, and Favorite Channel, 
and those waters of Lynn Canal and contiguous waters south of the 
latitude of the northernmost entrance of Berners Bay (5843.07 
N. lat.), including the waters of Berners Bay and Echo Cove, and those 
waters of Chatham Strait and contiguous waters north of the latitude of 
Point Marsden (5803.42 N. lat.), and east of a line from Point 
Couverden at 5811.38 N. lat., 13503.40 W. long., to 
Point Augusta at 5802.38 N. lat., 13457.11 W. long.;
    (iii) The Anchorage-Matsu-Kenai non-subsistence marine waters area 
in Commission Regulatory Area 3A (see figures 4, 5, 6, and 7 to this 
subpart E) is defined as:
    (A) All waters of Cook Inlet north of a line extending from the 
westernmost point of Hesketh Island at 5930.40 N. lat., except 
those waters within mean lower low tide from a point one mile south of 
the southern edge of the Chuitna River (6105.00 N. lat., 
15101.00 W. long.) south to the easternmost tip of Granite 
Point (6101.00 N. lat., 15123.00 W. long.) (Tyonek 
subdistrict); and
    (B) All waters of Alaska south of 5930.40 N. lat. on the 
western shore of Cook Inlet to Cape Douglas (5851.10 N. lat.) 
and in the east to Cape Fairfield (14850.25 W. long.), except 
those waters of Alaska west of a line from the easternmost point of 
Jakolof Bay (15131.90 W. long.), and following the shore to a 
line extending south from the easternmost point of Rocky Bay 
(15118.41 W. long.); and
    (iv) Valdez non-subsistence marine waters area in Commission 
regulatory area 3A (see figures 4 and 5 to this subpart E) is defined as 
the waters of Port Valdez and Valdez Arm located north of 
6101.38 N. lat., and east of 14643.80 W. long.
    (4) Waters in and off Alaska that are not specifically identified as 
non-subsistence marine waters areas in paragraph (h)(3) of this section 
are rural for purposes of subsistence fishing for halibut. Subsistence 
fishing may be conducted in any rural area by any person with a valid 
subsistence halibut registration certificate in his or her name issued 
by NMFS under paragraph (i) of this section, except that:
    (i) A person who is not a rural resident but who is a member of an 
Alaska Native tribe that is located in a rural area and that is listed 
in the table in paragraph (g)(2) of this section is limited to 
conducting subsistence fishing for halibut only in his or her area of 
tribal membership.
    (ii) A person who is a resident outside the State of Alaska but who 
is a member of an Alaska Native tribe that is located in a rural area 
and that is listed in the table in paragraph (g)(2) of this section is 
limited to conducting subsistence fishing for halibut only in his or her 
area of tribal membership.
    (iii) For purposes of this paragraph (h)(4), ``area of tribal 
membership'' means rural areas of the Commission regulatory area under 
which the Organized Tribal Entity is listed in the tables set out in 
paragraph (g)(2) of this section, or the Bering Sea closed area adjacent 
to the rural area in which the Alaska Native tribal headquarters is 
located.
    (i) Subsistence registration. A person must register as a 
subsistence halibut fisher and possess a valid subsistence halibut 
registration certificate in his or her name issued by NMFS before he or 
she begins subsistence fishing for halibut in waters in and off Alaska.
    (1) A subsistence halibut registration certificate will be issued to 
any person who registers according to paragraph (i)(2) of this section 
and who is qualified to conduct subsistence fishing for halibut 
according to paragraph (g) of

[[Page 206]]

this section. The Alaska Region, NMFS, may enter into cooperative 
agreements with Alaska Native tribal governments or their representative 
organizations for purposes of identifying persons qualified to conduct 
subsistence fishing for halibut according to paragraph (g) of this 
section.
    (2) Registration. To register as a subsistence halibut fisherman, a 
person may request a cooperating Alaska Native tribal government or 
other entity designated by NMFS to submit an application on his or her 
behalf to the Alaska Region, NMFS. Alternatively, a person may apply by 
submitting a completed application to the Alaska Region, NMFS. 
Application forms are available on the NMFS Alaska Region Web site at 
http://alaskafisheries.noaa.gov, or by contacting NMFS at 800-304-4846, 
Option 2. NMFS will process a SHARC Application for an Alaska Native 
Tribal Member or a SHARC Application for a Rural Resident provided that 
an application is completed, with all applicable fields accurately 
filled-in, and all required additional documentation is submitted. 
Initial applications for a SHARC must be signed and mailed or faxed to 
NMFS (see instructions on form). Renewals may be submitted 
electronically, mailed, or faxed.
    (i) Non-electronic submittal. The applicant must sign and date the 
application certifying that all information is true, correct, and 
complete. The applicant must submit the paper application as indicated 
on the application.
    (ii) Electronic submittal. An individual can submit a SHARC renewal 
on-line using an application available at the Alaska Region website. By 
using the SHARC number and date of birth, and by submitting the 
application form, the applicant certifies that all information is true, 
correct, and complete.
    (3) Expiration of registration. Each subsistence halibut 
registration certificate will be valid only for the period of time 
specified on the certificate. A person eligible to harvest subsistence 
halibut under paragraph (g) of this section may renew his or her 
registration certificate that is expired or will expire within 3 months 
by following the procedures described in paragraph (i)(2) of this 
section. A subsistence halibut registration certificate will expire:
    (i) 2 years from the date of its issuance to a person eligible to 
harvest subsistence halibut under paragraph (g)(1) of this section, and
    (ii) 4 years from the date of its issuance to a person eligible to 
harvest subsistence halibut under paragraph (g)(2) of this section.
    (j) Community Harvest Permit (CHP). An Area 2C or Area 3A community 
or Alaska Native tribe listed in paragraphs (g)(1) or (g)(2) of this 
section may apply for a CHP, which allows a community or Alaska Native 
tribe to appoint one or more individuals from its respective community 
or Alaska Native tribe to harvest subsistence halibut from a single 
vessel under reduced gear and harvest restrictions. The CHP consists of 
a harvest log and up to five laminated permit cards. A CHP is a permit 
subject to regulation under Sec. 679.4(a) of this title.
    (1) Qualifications. (i) NMFS may issue a CHP to any community or 
Alaska Native tribe that applies according to paragraph (j)(2) of this 
section and that is qualified to conduct subsistence fishing for halibut 
according to paragraph (g) of this section.
    (ii) NMFS will issue a CHP to a community in Area 2C or Area 3A only 
if:
    (A) The applying community is listed as eligible in Area 2C or Area 
3A according to paragraph (g)(1) of this section; and
    (B) No Alaska Native tribe listed in paragraph (g)(2) of this 
section exists in that community.
    (iii) NMFS will issue a CHP to an Alaska Native tribe in Area 2C or 
Area 3A only if the applying tribe is listed as eligible in Area 2C or 
Area 3A according to paragraph (g)(2) of this section.
    (iv) Eligible communities or Alaska Native tribes may appoint only 
one CHP Coordinator per community or tribe.
    (2) Application. A community or Alaska Native tribe may apply for a 
CHP by submitting an application to the Alaska Region, NMFS. 
Applications must be mailed to: Restricted Access Management Program, 
NMFS, Alaska Region, P.O. Box 21668, Juneau, AK 99802-1668. A complete 
application must include:

[[Page 207]]

    (i) The name of the community or Alaska Native tribe requesting the 
CHP;
    (ii) The full name of the person who is designated as the CHP 
Coordinator for each community or Alaska Native tribe, the designated 
CHP Coordinator's mailing address (number and street, city, state, and 
zip code), community of residence (the rural community or residence from 
paragraph (g)(1) of this section) or the Alaska Native tribe if 
applicable (as indicated in paragraph (g)(2) of this section), and the 
daytime telephone number; and
    (iii) Any previously issued CHP harvest logs.
    (3) Restrictions. Subsistence fishing for halibut under a CHP shall 
be valid only:
    (i) In Area 2C or Area 3A, except that a CHP may not be used:
    (A) Within Sitka Sound as defined in paragraph (e)(1)(ii) of this 
section (see Figure 1 to this subpart E); or
    (B) Within the Ketchikan, Juneau, Anchorage-Matsu-Kenai, and Valdez 
non-subsistence marine waters areas as defined in paragraph (h)(3) of 
this section (see figures 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7 to this subpart E).
    (ii) To persons in possession of a valid subsistence halibut 
registration certificate issued in accordance with paragraph (i) of this 
section for the same community or Alaska Native tribe listed on the CHP;
    (iii) On a single vessel on which a CHP card is present; and
    (iv) If subsistence fishing gear set or retrieved from a vessel on 
which the CHP card is present does not exceed the restrictions of 
paragraph (h) of this section.
    (4) Expiration of permit. Each CHP will be valid only for the period 
of time specified on the permit. A CHP will expire one year from the 
date of issuance to a community or Alaska Native tribe eligible to 
harvest halibut under paragraph (g) of this section. A community or 
Alaska Native tribe eligible to harvest subsistence halibut under 
paragraph (g) of this section may renew its CHP that is expired or will 
expire within three months by following the procedures described in 
paragraph (j)(2) of this section.
    (5) Duties of the CHP coordinator. Each CHP Coordinator must ensure:
    (i) The designated harvesters who may fish under the CHP are 
identified on the Community Harvest Permit harvest log when the CHP is 
issued to the designated harvesters;
    (ii) The CHP remains in the possession of the CHP Coordinator or 
other tribal or government authority when not in use and is issued to 
the designated harvesters when necessary; and
    (iii) All required recordkeeping and data reporting of subsistence 
harvests under the CHP are performed.
    (6) Harvest log submission. Each Community Harvest Permit harvest 
log must be submitted to NMFS on or before the date of expiration by 
facsimile or mail. Harvest logs must be mailed to RAM at the address 
given in paragraph (j)(2) of this section or faxed to 907-586-7354. The 
log must provide information on:
    (i) The subsistence fisher's identity including his or her full 
name, subsistence halibut registration certificate number, date of 
birth, mailing address (number and street, city, state, and zip code), 
community of residence, daytime phone number, and tribal identity (if 
appropriate); and
    (ii) The subsistence halibut harvest including whether the 
participant fished for subsistence halibut during the period specified 
on the permit, and if so, the date harvest occurred, the number and 
weight (in pounds) of halibut harvested, the type of gear and number of 
hooks used, the Commission regulatory area and local water body from 
which the halibut were harvested, and the number of lingcod and rockfish 
caught while subsistence fishing for halibut.
    (k) Ceremonial Permit or Educational Permit. An Area 2C or Area 3A 
Alaska Native tribe that is listed in paragraph (g)(2) of this section 
may apply for a Ceremonial or Educational Permit, allowing the tribe to 
harvest up to 25 halibut per permit issued. The Ceremonial and 
Educational Permits each consist of a harvest log and a single laminated 
permit card. Ceremonial and Educational Permits are permits subject to 
regulation under Sec. 679.4(a) of this title.

[[Page 208]]

    (1) Qualifications. (i) NMFS may issue a Ceremonial or Educational 
Permit to any Alaska Native tribe that completes an application 
according to paragraph (k)(2) of this section and that is qualified to 
conduct subsistence fishing for halibut according to paragraph (g)(2) of 
this section.
    (ii) Eligible Alaska Native tribes may appoint only one Ceremonial 
Permit Coordinator per tribe.
    (iii) Eligible educational programs may appoint only one authorized 
Instructor per Educational Permit.
    (2) Application. An Alaska Native tribe may apply for a Ceremonial 
or Educational Permit by submitting an application to the Alaska Region, 
NMFS. Applications must be mailed to: Restricted Access Management 
Program, NMFS, Alaska Region, P.O. Box 21668, Juneau, AK 99802-1668.
    (i) A complete application must include:
    (A) The name of the Alaska Native tribe requesting the Ceremonial or 
Educational Permit;
    (B) The name of the person designated as the Ceremonial Permit 
Coordinator for each Alaska Native tribe or the name of the person 
designated as the Instructor for an Educational Permit, the Ceremonial 
Permit Coordinator or Instructor's mailing address (number and street, 
city, state, and zip code), and the daytime telephone number;
    (C) Any previously issued Ceremonial Permit harvest logs from any 
expired Ceremonial Permit if applying for a Ceremonial Permit; and
    (D) Any previously issued Educational Permit harvest logs from any 
expired Educational Permit if applying for an Educational Permit.
    (ii) NMFS will issue a Ceremonial Permit for the harvest of halibut 
associated with traditional cultural events only if the application:
    (A) Indicates the occasion of cultural or ceremonial significance; 
and
    (B) Identifies the person designated by the eligible Alaska Native 
tribe as the Ceremonial Permit Coordinator.
    (iii) NMFS will issue an Educational Permit only if the application:
    (A) Includes the name and address of the educational institution or 
organization;
    (B) Includes the instructor's name;
    (C) Demonstrates the enrollment of qualified students;
    (D) Describes minimum attendance requirements of the educational 
program; and
    (E) Describes standards for the successful completion of the 
educational program.
    (3) Restrictions. Subsistence fishing for halibut under Ceremonial 
or Educational Permits shall be valid only:
    (i) In Area 3A, except:
    (A) In the Anchorage-Matsu-Kenai non-subsistence marine waters area 
defined in paragraph (h)(3) of this section (see figures 4, 5, 6, and 7 
to this subpart E), only the following tribes may use a Ceremonial or 
Educational permit:
    (1) Kenaitze Indian Tribe;
    (2) Seldovia Village Tribe;
    (3) Ninilchik Village;
    (4) Native Village of Port Graham;
    (5) Native Village of Nanwalek; and
    (6) Village of Salamatoff.
    (B) In the Valdez non-subsistence marine waters area defined in 
paragraph (h)(3) of this section (see figures 4 and 5 to this subpart 
E), only the Native Village of Tatitlek may use a Ceremonial or 
Educational permit.
    (ii) In Area 2C, except:
    (A) In the Ketchikan non-subsistence marine waters area defined in 
paragraph (h)(3) of this section (see figure 2 to this subpart E), only 
the following tribes may use a Ceremonial or Educational permit:
    (1) Central Council of Tlingit/Haida Indians;
    (2) Ketchikan Indian Corporation; and
    (3) Organized Village of Saxman;
    (B) In the Juneau non-subsistence marine waters area defined in 
paragraph (h)(3) of this section (see figure 3 to this subpart E), only 
the following tribes may use a Ceremonial or Educational permit:
    (1) Central Council of Tlingit/Haida Indians;
    (2) Douglas Indian Association; and
    (3) Aukquan Traditional Council.
    (C) A Ceremonial Permit may not be used within Sitka Sound from June 
1 through August 31;
    (iii) On a single vessel on which the Ceremonial or Educational 
Permit card is present;

[[Page 209]]

    (iv) On the vessel on which the instructor is present for 
Educational Permits;
    (v) To persons in possession of a valid subsistence halibut 
registration certificate issued in accordance with paragraph (i) of this 
section for the same Alaska Native tribe listed on the Ceremonial or 
Educational Permit, except that students enrolled in an educational 
program may fish under an Educational Permit without a subsistence 
halibut registration certificate; and
    (vi) If subsistence fishing gear set or retrieved from a vessel on 
which the Ceremonial or Educational Permit card is present does not 
exceed the restrictions of paragraph (h) of this section.
    (4) Expiration of permits. Each Ceremonial or Educational Permit 
will be valid only for the period of time specified on the permit. 
Ceremonial and Educational Permits will expire 30 days from the date of 
issuance to an Alaska Native tribe eligible to harvest halibut under 
paragraph (g)(2) of this section. A tribe eligible to harvest 
subsistence halibut under paragraph (g)(2) of this section may apply for 
additional Ceremonial or Educational Permits at any time.
    (5) Duties of Ceremonial Permit Coordinators and Instructors. Each 
Ceremonial Permit Coordinator or Instructor must ensure:
    (i) The designated harvesters or students who may fish under the 
Ceremonial or Educational Permit are identified on the Ceremonial/
Educational Permit harvest log when the permit is used;
    (ii) The Ceremonial Permit remains in the possession of the 
Ceremonial Permit Coordinator or other tribal authority when not in use 
and is issued to designated harvesters when necessary; and
    (iii) All required recordkeeping and data reporting of subsistence 
harvests under the Ceremonial or Educational Permit are performed.
    (6) Harvest log submission. Submission of a Ceremonial or 
Educational Permit log shall be required upon the expiration of each 
permit and must be received by Restricted Access Management within 15 
days of the expiration by facsimile or mail. Harvest logs must be mailed 
to RAM at the address given in paragraph (k)(2) of this section or faxed 
to 907-586-7354. The log must provide information on:
    (i) The subsistence fisher's identity including his or her full 
name, subsistence halibut registration certificate number if applicable 
(students do not need a SHARC), date of birth, mailing address (number 
and street, city, state, and zip code), community of residence, daytime 
phone number, and tribal identity;
    (ii) The subsistence halibut harvest including whether the 
participant fished for subsistence halibut during the period indicated 
on the permit, and if so, the date when harvest occurred, the number and 
weight (in pounds) of halibut harvested, the type of gear and number of 
hooks used, the Commission regulatory area and local water body from 
which the halibut were harvested, and the number of lingcod and rockfish 
caught while subsistence fishing for halibut.
    (l) Appeals. If Restricted Access Management (RAM) determines that 
an application is deficient, it will prepare and send an Initial 
Administrative Determination (IAD) to the applicant. The IAD will 
indicate the deficiencies in the application or any additional provided 
information. An applicant who receives an IAD may appeal RAM's findings 
pursuant to Sec. 679.43 of this title.

[68 FR 18156, Apr. 15, 2003]

    Editorial Note: For Federal Register citations affecting 
Sec. 300.65, see the List of CFR Sections Affected, which appears in the 
Finding Aids section of the printed volume and at www.fdsys.gov.



Sec. 300.66  Prohibitions.

    In addition to the general prohibitions specified in 50 CFR 300.4, 
it is unlawful for any person to do any of the following:
    (a) Fish for halibut except in accordance with the annual management 
measures published pursuant to 50 CFR 300.62.
    (b) Fish for halibut except in accordance with the catch sharing 
plans and domestic management measures implemented under Secs. 300.63, 
300.65, and 300.67.

[[Page 210]]

    (c) Fish for halibut in Sitka Sound in violation of the Sitka Sound 
LAMP implemented under 50 CFR 300.65(e).
    (d) Fish for halibut or anchor a vessel with halibut on board within 
the Sitka Pinnacles Marine Reserve defined at 50 CFR 300.65(f).
    (e) Fish for subsistence halibut in and off Alaska unless the person 
is qualified to do so under Sec. 300.65(g), possesses a valid 
subsistence halibut registration certificate pursuant to Sec. 300.65(i), 
and makes this certificate available for inspection by an authorized 
officer on request, except that students enrolled in a valid educational 
program and fishing under an Educational Permit issued pursuant to 
Sec. 300.65(k) do not need a subsistence halibut registration 
certificate.
    (f) Fish for subsistence halibut in and off Alaska with gear other 
than that described at 50 CFR 300.65(h)(1) and retain more halibut than 
specified at 50 CFR 300.65(h)(2).
    (g) Fish for subsistence halibut in and off Alaska in a non-
subsistence marine waters area specified at Sec. 300.65(h)(3).
    (h) Conduct subsistence fishing for halibut while commercial fishing 
or sport fishing for halibut, as defined in Sec. 300.61, from the same 
vessel on the same calendar day, or possess on board a vessel halibut 
harvested while subsistence fishing with halibut harvested while 
commercial fishing or sport fishing, except that persons authorized to 
conduct subsistence fishing under Sec. 300.65(g), and who land their 
total annual harvest of halibut:
    (1) In Commission regulatory Areas 4D or 4E may retain, with 
harvests of Community Development Quota (CDQ) halibut, subsistence 
halibut harvested in Commission regulatory areas 4D or 4E that are 
smaller than the size limit specified in the annual management measures 
published pursuant to Sec. 300.62; or
    (2) In Commission regulatory Areas 4C, 4D or 4E may retain, with 
harvests of CDQ halibut, subsistence halibut harvested in Commission 
regulatory areas 4C, 4D or 4E that are equal to or greater than the size 
limit specified in the annual management measures published pursuant to 
Sec. 300.62.
    (i) Conduct commercial and sport fishing for halibut, as defined in 
Sec. 300.61, from the same vessel on the same calendar day.
    (j) Fish for subsistence halibut from a charter vessel or retain 
subsistence halibut onboard a charter vessel if anyone other than the 
owner of record, as indicated on the State of Alaska vessel 
registration, or the owner's immediate family is aboard the charter 
vessel and unless each person engaging in subsistence fishing onboard 
the charter vessel holds a subsistence halibut registration certificate 
in the person's name pursuant to Sec. 300.65(i) and complies with the 
gear and harvest restrictions found at Sec. 300.65(h). For purposes of 
this paragraph (i), the term ``charter vessel'' means a vessel that is 
registered, or that should be registered, as a sport fishing guide 
vessel with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.
    (k) Retain or possess subsistence halibut for commercial purposes; 
cause subsistence halibut to be sold, bartered, or otherwise entered 
into commerce; or solicit exchange of subsistence halibut for commercial 
purposes, except that a person who qualified to conduct subsistence 
fishing for halibut under Sec. 300.65(g), and who holds a subsistence 
halibut registration certificate in the person's name under 
Sec. 300.65(i), may be reimbursed for the expense of fishing for 
subsistence halibut under the following conditions:
    (1) Persons who qualify as rural residents under Sec. 300.65(g)(1) 
or (g)(3) and hold a SHARC in the person's name under Sec. 300.65(i) may 
be reimbursed for actual expenses for ice, bait, food, and fuel directly 
related to subsistence fishing for halibut, by residents of the same 
rural community or by rural residents residing within ten statute miles 
of the rural location listed on the person's SHARC application; or
    (2) Persons who qualify as Alaska Native tribal members under 
Sec. 300.65(g)(2) and hold a SHARC in the person's name under 
Sec. 300.65(i) may be reimbursed for actual expenses for ice, bait, 
food, and fuel directly related to subsistence fishing for halibut, by 
any Alaska Native tribe, or its members, or residents of the same rural 
community or by rural residents residing within ten statute miles of the 
rural location

[[Page 211]]

listed on the person's SHARC application.
    (l) Retain subsistence halibut harvested under a CHP, Ceremonial 
Permit, or Educational Permit together in any combination or with 
halibut harvested under any other license or permit.
    (m) Fillet, mutilate, or otherwise disfigure subsistence halibut in 
any manner that prevents the determination of the number of fish caught, 
possessed, or landed.
    (n) Exceed any of the harvest or gear limitations specified at 
Sec. 300.65(c)(5) or adopted by the Commission as annual management 
measures and published in the Federal Register as required in 
Sec. 300.62.
    (o) Transfer subsistence halibut to charter vessel anglers.
    (p) Fail to comply with the requirements of Secs. 300.65 and 300.67.
    (q) Fail to submit or submit inaccurate information on any report, 
license, catch card, application, or statement required or submitted 
under Secs. 300.65 and 300.67, or submit inaccurate information to an 
authorized officer.
    (r) Refuse to present valid identification, U.S. Coast Guard 
operator's license, permit, license, or Alaska Department of Fish and 
Game Saltwater Sport Fishing Charter Trip logbook upon the request of an 
authorized officer.
    (s) Be a charter vessel guide with charter vessel anglers on board, 
or a charter vessel operator if the charter vessel guide is not on 
board, in Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A without an original valid 
charter halibut permit for the regulatory area in which the charter 
vessel is operating during a charter vessel fishing trip.
    (t) Be a charter vessel guide in Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A 
with more charter vessel anglers catching and retaining halibut during a 
charter vessel fishing trip than the total angler endorsement number 
specified on the charter halibut permit(s) or community charter halibut 
permit(s) in use for that trip.
    (u) Be a charter vessel guide of a charter vessel on which one or 
more charter vessel anglers are catching and retaining halibut in both 
Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A during one charter vessel fishing 
trip.
    (v) Be a charter vessel guide or a charter vessel operator during a 
charter vessel fishing trip in Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A with 
one or more charter vessel anglers that are catching and retaining 
halibut without having on board the vessel with the charter vessel 
anglers a State of Alaska Department of Fish and Game Saltwater Charter 
Logbook in which the charter vessel guide has specified the following:
    (1) The person named on the charter halibut permit or permits being 
used during that charter vessel fishing trip;
    (2) The charter halibut permit or permits number(s) being used 
during that charter vessel fishing trip; and
    (3) The name and State-issued vessel registration (AK number) or 
U.S. Coast Guard documentation number of the charter vessel.

[68 FR 18156, Apr. 15, 2003, as amended at 70 FR 16754, Apr. 1, 2005; 72 
FR 30728, June 4, 2007; 72 FR 67669, Nov. 30, 2007; 73 FR 30524, May 28, 
2008; 73 FR 52797, Sept. 11, 2008; 73 FR 54942, Sept. 24, 2008; 74 FR 
21228, May 6, 2009; 74 FR 57110, Nov. 4, 2009; 75 FR 600, Jan. 5, 2010; 
78 FR 75890, Dec. 12, 2013; 80 FR 35206, June 19, 2015]



Sec. 300.67  Charter halibut limited access program.

    This section establishes limitations on using a vessel on which 
charter vessel anglers catch and retain Pacific halibut in International 
Pacific Halibut Commission (IPHC) regulatory areas 2C and 3A.
    (a) General permit requirements. (1) In addition to other applicable 
permit, licensing, or registration requirements, any charter vessel 
guide of a charter vessel during a charter vessel fishing trip with one 
or more charter vessel anglers catching and retaining Pacific halibut on 
board must have on board the vessel an original valid charter halibut 
permit or permits endorsed for the regulatory area in which the charter 
vessel is operating and endorsed for at least the number of charter 
vessel anglers who are catching and retaining Pacific halibut. Each 
charter halibut permit holder must ensure that the charter vessel 
operator and charter

[[Page 212]]

vessel guide of the charter vessel comply with all requirements of 
Secs. 300.65, 300.66, and 300.67.
    (2) Area endorsement. A charter halibut permit is valid only in the 
International Pacific Halibut Commission regulatory area for which it is 
endorsed. Regulatory areas are defined in the annual management measures 
published pursuant to Sec. 300.62.
    (3) Charter vessel angler endorsement. A charter halibut permit is 
valid for up to the maximum number of charter vessel anglers on a single 
charter vessel for which the charter halibut permit is endorsed.
    (b) Qualifications for a charter halibut permit. A charter halibut 
permit for IPHC regulatory area 2C must be based on meeting 
participation requirements in area 2C. A charter halibut permit for IPHC 
regulatory area 3A must be based on meeting participation requirements 
in area 3A. Qualifications for a charter halibut permit in each area 
must be determined separately and must not be combined.
    (1) NMFS will issue a charter halibut permit to a person who meets 
the following requirements:
    (i) The person applies for a charter halibut permit within the 
application period specified in the Federal Register and completes the 
application process pursuant to paragraph (h) of this section.
    (ii) The person is the individual or non-individual entity to which 
the State of Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) issued the ADF&G 
Business Owner Licenses that authorized logbook fishing trips that meet 
the minimum participation requirements described in paragraphs 
(b)(1)(ii)(A) and (b)(1)(ii)(B) of this section for one or more charter 
halibut permits, unless the person is applying as a successor-in-
interest.
    (A) Reported five (5) bottomfish logbook fishing trips or more 
during one year of the qualifying period; and
    (B) Reported five (5) halibut logbook fishing trips or more during 
the recent participation period.
    (iii) If the person is applying as a successor-in-interest to the 
person to which ADF&G issued the Business Owner Licenses that authorized 
logbook fishing trips that meet the participation requirements described 
in paragraphs (b)(1)(ii) of this section for one or more charter halibut 
permits, NMFS will require the following written documentation:
    (A) If the applicant is applying on behalf of a deceased individual, 
the applicant must document that the individual is deceased, that the 
applicant is the personal representative of the deceased's estate 
appointed by a court, and that the applicant specifies who, pursuant to 
the applicant's personal representative duties, should receive the 
permit(s) for which application is made; or
    (B) If the applicant is applying as a successor-in-interest to an 
entity that is not an individual, the applicant must document that the 
entity has been dissolved and that the applicant is the successor-in-
interest to the dissolved entity.
    (iv) If more than one applicant claims that they are the successor-
in-interest to a dissolved entity, NMFS will award the permit or permits 
for which the dissolved entity qualified in the name(s) of the 
applicants that submitted a timely application and proved that they are 
a successor-in-interest to the dissolved entity.
    (2) Notwithstanding any other provision in this subpart, and except 
as provided in paragraph (b)(1)(iv) of this section,
    (i) One logbook fishing trip shall not be credited to more than one 
applicant;
    (ii) One logbook fishing trip made pursuant to one ADF&G Business 
Owner License shall not be credited to more than one applicant; and
    (iii) Participation by one charter halibut fishing business shall 
not be allowed to support issuance of permits to more than one 
applicant.
    (3) For purposes of this section, the term ``ADF&G Business Owner(s) 
License(s)'' includes a ``business registration,'' ``sport fish business 
owner license,'' ``sport fish business license,'' and ``ADF&G business 
license''.
    (c) Number of charter halibut permits. An applicant that meets the 
participation requirements in paragraph (b) of this section will be 
issued the number of charter halibut permits equal to the

[[Page 213]]

lesser of the number of permits determined by paragraphs (c)(1) or 
(c)(2) of this section as follows:
    (1) The total number of bottomfish logbook fishing trips made 
pursuant to the applicant's ADF&G Business License in the applicant-
selected year divided by five, and rounded down to a whole number; or
    (2) The number of vessels that made the bottomfish logbook fishing 
trips in the applicant-selected year.
    (d) Designation of transferability. Each permit issued to an 
applicant under paragraph (c) of this section will be designated as 
transferable or non-transferable.
    (1) Minimum participation criteria for a transferable permit are 
described in paragraphs (d)(1)(i) and (d)(1)(ii) of this section as 
follows:
    (i) Reported fifteen (15) bottomfish logbook fishing trips or more 
from the same vessel during one year of the qualifying period; and
    (ii) Reported fifteen (15) halibut logbook fishing trips or more 
from the same vessel during the recent participation period.
    (iii) The vessel used during the recent participation period is not 
required to be the same vessel used during the qualifying period.
    (2) The number of transferable charter halibut permits issued to an 
applicant will be equal to the lesser of the number of vessels that met 
the minimum transferable permit qualifications described in paragraphs 
(d)(1)(i) or (d)(1)(ii) of this section.
    (e) Angler endorsement. A charter halibut permit will be endorsed as 
follows:
    (1) The angler endorsement number for the first transferable permit 
for an area issued to an applicant will be the greatest number of 
charter vessel anglers reported on any logbook trip in the qualifying 
period in that area.
    (2) The angler endorsement number for each subsequent transferable 
permit issued to the same applicant for the same area will be the 
greatest number of charter vessel anglers reported by the applicant on 
any logbook trip in the qualifying period for a vessel not already used 
in that area to determine an angler endorsement, until all transferable 
permits issued to the applicant are assigned an angler endorsement.
    (3) The angler endorsement number for the first non-transferable 
permit for an area issued to an applicant will be the greatest number of 
charter vessel anglers reported on any logbook trip in the qualifying 
period for a vessel not already used to determine an angler endorsement 
in that area.
    (4) The angler endorsement number for each subsequent non-
transferable permit issued to the same applicant for the same area will 
be the greatest number of charter vessel anglers reported by the 
applicant on any logbook trip in the qualifying period for a vessel not 
already used in that area to determine an angler endorsement, until all 
non-transferable permits issued to the applicant are assigned an angler 
endorsement.
    (5) The angler endorsement number will be four (4) if the greatest 
number of charter vessel anglers reported on any logbook fishing trip 
for an area in the qualifying period is less than four (4), or no 
charter vessel anglers were reported on any of the applicant's logbook 
fishing trips in the applicant-selected year.
    (6) The angler endorsement number will be six (6) on a charter 
halibut permit issued pursuant to military service under paragraph 
(g)(3) of this section.
    (f) For purposes of this section, the following terms are defined as 
follows:
    (1) Applicant-selected year means the year in the qualifying period, 
2004 or 2005, selected by the applicant for NMFS to use in determining 
the applicant's number of transferable and nontransferable permits.
    (2) Bottomfish logbook fishing trip means a logbook fishing trip in 
the qualifying period that was reported to the State of Alaska in a 
Saltwater Charter Logbook with one of the following pieces of 
information: The statistical area(s) where bottomfish fishing occurred, 
the boat hours that the vessel engaged in bottomfish fishing, or the 
number of rods used from the vessel in bottomfish fishing.
    (3) Halibut logbook fishing trip means a logbook fishing trip in the 
recent participation period that was reported to the State of Alaska in 
a Saltwater Charter Logbook within the time limit

[[Page 214]]

for reporting the trip in effect at the time of the trip with one of the 
following pieces of information: The number of halibut that was kept, 
the number of halibut that was released, the statistical area(s) where 
bottomfish fishing occurred, or the boat hours that the vessel engaged 
in bottomfish fishing.
    (4) Logbook fishing trip means a bottomfish logbook fishing trip or 
a halibut logbook fishing trip that was reported as a trip to the State 
of Alaska in a Saltwater Charter Logbook within the time limits for 
reporting the trip in effect at the time of the trip, except that for 
multi-day trips, the number of trips will be equal to the number of days 
of the multi-day trip, e.g., a two day trip will be counted as two 
trips.
    (5) Official charter halibut record means the information prepared 
by NMFS on participation in charter halibut fishing in Area 2C and Area 
3A that NMFS will use to implement the Charter Halibut Limited Access 
Program and evaluate applications for charter halibut permits.
    (6) Qualifying period means the sport fishing season established by 
the International Pacific Halibut Commission (February 1 through 
December 31) in 2004 and 2005.
    (7) Recent participation period means the sport fishing season 
established by the International Pacific Halibut Commission (February 1 
through December 31) in 2008.
    (g) Unavoidable circumstance. Unavoidable circumstance claims must 
be made pursuant to paragraph (h)(6) of this section, and will be 
limited to persons who would be excluded from the charter halibut 
fishery entirely unless their unavoidable circumstance is recognized. 
This unavoidable circumstance provision cannot be used to upgrade the 
number of permits issued or to change a non-transferable permit to a 
transferable permit, and is limited to the following circumstances.
    (1) Recent participation period. An applicant for a charter halibut 
permit that meets the participation requirement for the qualifying 
period, but does not meet the participation requirement for the recent 
participation period, may receive one or more charter halibut permits if 
the applicant proves paragraphs (g)(1)(i) through (iv) of this section 
as follows:
    (i) The applicant had a specific intent to operate a charter halibut 
fishing business in the recent participation period;
    (ii) The applicant's specific intent was thwarted by a circumstance 
that was:
    (A) Unavoidable;
    (B) Unique to the owner of the charter halibut fishing business; and
    (C) Unforeseen and reasonably unforeseeable by the owner of the 
charter halibut fishing business;
    (iii) The circumstance that prevented the applicant from operating a 
charter halibut fishing business actually occurred; and
    (iv) The applicant took all reasonable steps to overcome the 
circumstance that prevented the applicant from operating a charter 
halibut fishing business in the recent participation period.
    (v) If the applicant proves the foregoing (see paragraphs (g)(1)(i) 
through (iv) of this section), the applicant will receive the number of 
transferable and non-transferable permits and the angler endorsements on 
these permits that result from the application of criteria in paragraphs 
(b), (c), (d), (e), and (f) of this section.
    (2) Qualifying period. An applicant for a charter halibut permit 
that meets the participation requirement for the recent participation 
period but does not meet the participation requirement for the 
qualifying period, may receive one or more permits if the applicant 
proves paragraphs (g)(2)(i) through (iv) of this section as follows:
    (i) The applicant had a specific intent to operate a charter halibut 
fishing business in at least one year of the qualifying period;
    (ii) The applicant's specific intent was thwarted by a circumstance 
that was:
    (A) Unavoidable;
    (B) Unique to the owner of the charter halibut fishing business; and
    (C) Unforeseen and reasonably unforeseeable by the owner of the 
charter halibut fishing business;
    (iii) The circumstance that prevented the applicant from operating a 
charter

[[Page 215]]

halibut fishing business actually occurred; and
    (iv) The applicant took all reasonable steps to overcome the 
circumstance that prevented the applicant from operating a charter 
halibut fishing business in at least one year of the qualifying period.
    (v) If the applicant proves the foregoing (see paragraphs (g)(2)(i) 
through (iv) of this section), the applicant will receive either:
    (A) One non-transferable permit with an angler endorsement of four 
(4); or
    (B) The number of transferable and non-transferable permits, and the 
angler endorsement on those permits, that result from the logbook 
fishing trips that the applicant proves likely would have taken by the 
applicant but for the circumstance that thwarted the applicant's 
specific intent to operate a charter halibut fishing business in one 
year of the qualifying period and the applicant did not participate 
during the other year of the qualifying period.
    (3) Military service. An applicant for a charter halibut permit that 
meets the participation requirement in the recent participation period, 
but does not meet the participation requirement for the qualifying 
period, may receive one or more permits if the applicant proves the 
following:
    (i) The applicant was ordered to report for active duty military 
service as a member of a branch of the U.S. military, National Guard, or 
military reserve during the qualifying period; and
    (ii) The applicant had a specific intent to operate a charter 
halibut fishing business that was thwarted by the applicant's order to 
report for military service.
    (iii) The number of transferable and non-transferable charter 
halibut permit(s) that an applicant may receive under paragraph (g)(3) 
of this section will be based on the criteria in paragraph (g)(2)(v)(B) 
of this section. Angler endorsements on all such charter halibut permits 
will be pursuant to paragraph (e)(2) of this section.
    (h) Application for a charter halibut permit. (1) An application 
period of no less than 60 days will be specified by notice in the 
Federal Register during which any person may apply for a charter halibut 
permit. Any application that is submitted by mail and postmarked, or 
submitted by hand delivery or facsimile, after the last day of the 
application period will be denied. Electronic submission other than by 
facsimile will be denied. Applications must be submitted to the address 
given in the Federal Register notice of the application period.
    (2) Charter halibut permit. To be complete, a charter halibut permit 
application must be signed and dated by the applicant, and the applicant 
must attest that, to the best of the applicant's knowledge, all 
statements in the application are true and the applicant complied with 
all legal requirements for logbook fishing trips in the qualifying 
period and recent participation period that were reported under the 
applicant's ADF&G Business Owner Licenses. An application for a charter 
halibut permit will be made available by NMFS. Completed applications 
may be submitted by mail, hand delivery, or facsimile at any time during 
the application period announced in the Federal Register notice of the 
application period described at paragraph (h)(1) of this section.
    (3) Application procedure. NMFS will create the official charter 
halibut record and will accept all application claims that are 
consistent with the official charter halibut record. If an applicant's 
claim is not consistent with the official charter halibut record, NMFS 
will issue non-transferable interim permit(s) for all undisputed permit 
claims, and will respond to the applicant by letter specifying a 30-day 
evidentiary period during which the applicant may provide additional 
information or argument to support the applicant's claim for disputed 
permit(s). Limits on the 30-day evidentiary period are as follows:
    (i) An applicant shall be limited to one 30-day evidentiary period; 
and
    (ii) Additional information received after the 30-day evidentiary 
period has expired will not be considered for purposes of the initial 
administrative determination.
    (4) After NMFS evaluates the additional information submitted by the 
applicant during the 30-day evidentiary period, it will take one of the 
following two actions.

[[Page 216]]

    (i) If NMFS determines that the applicant has met its burden of 
proving that the official charter halibut record is incorrect, NMFS will 
amend the official charter halibut record and use the official charter 
halibut record, as amended, to determine whether the applicant is 
eligible to receive one or more charter halibut permits, the nature of 
those permits and the angler and area endorsements on those permits; or
    (ii) If NMFS determines that the applicant has not met its burden of 
proving that the official charter halibut record is incorrect, NMFS will 
notify the applicant by an initial administration determination, 
pursuant to paragraph (h)(5) of this section.
    (5) Initial Administration Determination (IAD). NMFS will send an 
IAD to the applicant following the expiration of the 30-day evidentiary 
period if NMFS determines that the applicant has not met its burden of 
proving that the official charter halibut record is incorrect or that 
other reasons exist to initially deny the application. The IAD will 
indicate the deficiencies in the application and the deficiencies with 
the information submitted by the applicant in support of its claim.
    (6) Appeal. An applicant that receives an IAD may appeal to the 
Office of Administrative Appeals (OAA) pursuant to Sec. 679.43 of this 
title.
    (i) If the applicant does not apply for a charter halibut permit 
within the application period specified in the Federal Register, the 
applicant will not receive any interim permits pending final agency 
action on the application.
    (ii) If the applicant applies for a permit within the specified 
application period and OAA accepts the applicant's appeal, the applicant 
will receive the number and kind of interim permits which are not in 
dispute, according to the information in the official charter halibut 
record.
    (iii) If the applicant applies for a permit within the specified 
application period and OAA accepts the applicant's appeal, but according 
to the information in the official charter halibut record, the applicant 
would not be issued any permits, the applicant will receive one interim 
permit with an angler endorsement of four (4).
    (iv) All interim permits will be non-transferable and will expire 
when NMFS takes final agency action on the application.
    (i) Transfer of a charter halibut permit--(1) General. A transfer of 
a charter halibut permit is valid only if it is approved by NMFS. NMFS 
will approve a transfer of a charter halibut permit if the permit to be 
transferred is a transferable permit issued under paragraph (d)(2) of 
this section, if a complete transfer application is submitted, and if 
the transfer application meets the standards for approval in paragraph 
(i)(2) of this section.
    (2) Standards for approval of transfers. NMFS will transfer a 
transferable charter halibut permit to a person designated by the 
charter halibut permit holder if, at the time of the transfer the 
following standards are met:
    (i) The person designated to receive the transferred permit is a 
U.S. citizen or a U.S. business with a minimum of 75 percent U.S. 
ownership;
    (ii) The parties to the transfer do not owe NMFS any fines, civil 
penalties or any other payments;
    (iii) The transfer is not inconsistent with any sanctions resulting 
from Federal fishing violations;
    (iv) The transfer will not cause the designated recipient of the 
permit to exceed the permit limit at paragraph (j) of this section, 
unless an exception to that limit applies;
    (v) The GAF permit is not assigned to a charter halibut permit for 
which the GAF account contains unharvested GAF, pursuant to Sec. 300.65 
(c)(5)(iii)(A)(3) and (4);
    (vi) A transfer application is completed and approved by NMFS; and
    (vii) The transfer does not violate any other provision in this 
part.
    (3) For purposes of paragraph (i)(2) of this section, a U.S. 
business with a minimum of 75 percent U.S. ownership means a 
corporation, partnership, association, trust, joint venture, limited 
liability company, limited liability partnership, or any other entity 
where at least 75 percent of the interest in such entity, at each tier 
of ownership of such entity and in the aggregate, is owned and 
controlled by citizens of the United States.

[[Page 217]]

    (4) Application to transfer a charter halibut permit. To be 
complete, a charter halibut permit transfer application must have 
notarized and dated signatures of the applicants, and the applicants 
must attest that, to the best of the applicants' knowledge, all 
statements in the application are true. An application to transfer a 
charter halibut permit will be made available by NMFS. Completed 
transfer applications may be submitted by mail or hand delivery at any 
time to the addresses listed on the application. Electronic or facsimile 
deliveries will not be accepted.
    (5) Denied transfer applications. If NMFS does not approve a charter 
halibut permit transfer application, NMFS will inform the applicant of 
the basis for its disapproval.
    (6) Transfer due to court order, operation of law or as part of a 
security agreement. NMFS will transfer a charter halibut permit based on 
a court order, operation of law or a security agreement, if NMFS 
determines that a transfer application is complete and the transfer will 
not violate an eligibility criterion for transfers.
    (j) Charter halibut permit limitations--(1) General. A person may 
not own, hold, or control more than five (5) charter halibut permits 
except as provided by paragraph (j)(4) of this section. NMFS will not 
approve a transfer application that would result in the applicant that 
would receive the transferred permit holding more than five (5) charter 
halibut permits except as provided by paragraph (j)(6) of this section.
    (2) Ten percent ownership criterion. In determining whether two or 
more persons are the same person for purposes of paragraph (j)(1) of 
this section, NMFS will apply the definition of an ``affiliation for the 
purpose of defining AFA entities'' at Sec. 679.2 of this title.
    (3) A permit will cease to be a valid permit if the permit holder 
is:
    (i) An individual and the individual dies; or
    (ii) A non-individual (e.g., corporation or partnership) and 
dissolves or changes as defined at paragraph (j)(5) of this section.
    (iii) A transferable permit may be made valid by transfer to an 
eligible recipient.
    (4) Exception for initial recipients of permits. Notwithstanding the 
limitation at paragraph (j)(1) of this section, NMFS may issue more than 
five (5) charter halibut permits to an initial recipient that meets the 
requirements described in paragraphs (b), (d), and (e) of this section 
for more than five (5) charter halibut permits, subject to the following 
limitations:
    (i) This exception applies only to an initial recipient as the 
recipient exists at the time that it is initially issued the permits;
    (ii) If an initial recipient of transferable permit(s) who is an 
individual dies, the individual's successor-in-interest may not hold 
more than five (5) charter halibut permits;
    (iii) If an initial recipient permit holder that is a non-
individual, such as a corporation or a partnership, dissolves or 
changes, NMFS will consider the new entity a new permit holder and the 
new permit holder may not hold more than five (5) charter halibut 
permits.
    (5) For purposes of this paragraph (j), a ``change'' means:
    (i) For an individual, the individual has died, in which case NMFS 
must be notified within 30 days of the individual's death; and
    (ii) For a non-individual entity, the same as defined at 
Sec. 679.42(j)(4)(i) of this title, in which case the permit holder must 
notify NMFS within 15 days of the effective date of the change as 
required at Sec. 679.42(j)(5) of this title.
    (6) Exception for transfer of permits. Notwithstanding the 
limitation at paragraph (j)(1) of this section, NMFS may approve a 
permit transfer application that would result in the person that would 
receive the transferred permit(s) holding more than five (5) 
transferable charter halibut permits if the parties to the transfer meet 
the following conditions:
    (i) The designated person that would receive the transferred permits 
does not hold any charter halibut permits;
    (ii) All permits that would be transferred are transferable permits;

[[Page 218]]

    (iii) The permits that would be transferred are all of the 
transferable permits that were awarded to an initial recipient who 
exceeded the permit limitation of five (5) permits; and
    (iv) The person transferring its permits also is transferring its 
entire charter vessel fishing business, including all the assets of that 
business, to the designated person that would receive the transferred 
permits.
    (k) Community charter halibut permit--(1) General. A Community Quota 
Entity (CQE), as defined in Sec. 679.2 of this title, representing an 
eligible community listed in paragraph (k)(2) of this section, may 
receive one or more community charter halibut permits. A community 
charter halibut permit issued to a CQE will be designated for area 2C or 
area 3A, will be non-transferable, and will have an angler endorsement 
of six (6).
    (2) Eligible communities. Each community charter halibut permit 
issued to a CQE under paragraph (k)(1) of this section will specify the 
name of an eligible community on the permit. Only the following 
communities are eligible to receive community charter halibut permits:
    (i) For Area 2C: Angoon, Coffman Cove, Edna Bay, Game Creek, Hollis, 
Hoonah, Hydaburg, Kake, Kasaan, Klawock, Metlakatla, Meyers Chuck, 
Naukati Bay, Pelican, Point Baker, Port Alexander, Port Protection, 
Tenakee, Thorne Bay, Whale Pass.
    (ii) For Area 3A: Akhiok, Chenega Bay, Halibut Cove, Karluk, Larsen 
Bay, Nanwalek, Old Harbor, Ouzinkie, Port Graham, Port Lyons, Seldovia, 
Tatitlek, Tyonek, Yakutat.
    (3) Limitations. The maximum number of community charter halibut 
permits that may be issued to a CQE for each eligible community the CQE 
represents is as follows:
    (i) A CQE representing an eligible community or communities in 
regulatory area 2C may receive a maximum of four (4) community charter 
halibut permits per eligible community designated for Area 2C.
    (ii) A CQE representing an eligible community or communities in 
regulatory area 3A may receive a maximum of seven (7) community charter 
halibut permits per eligible community designated for Area 3A.
    (4) NMFS will not approve a transfer that will cause a CQE 
representing a community or communities to hold more than the total 
number of permits described in paragraphs (k)(4)(i) and (k)(4)(ii) of 
this section, per community, including community charter halibut permits 
granted to the CQE under this paragraph (k) and any charter halibut 
permits acquired by the CQE by transfer under paragraph (i) of this 
section.
    (i) The maximum number of charter halibut and community charter 
halibut permits that may be held by a CQE per community represented by 
the CQE in regulatory area 2C is eight (8).
    (ii) The maximum number of charter halibut and community charter 
halibut permits that may be held by a CQE per community represented by 
the CQE in regulatory area 3A is fourteen (14).
    (5) Limitation on use of permits. The following limitations apply to 
community charter halibut permits issued to a CQE under paragraph (k)(1) 
of this section.
    (i) Every charter vessel fishing trip authorized by such a permit 
and on which halibut are caught and retained must begin or end at a 
location(s) specified on the application for a community charter halibut 
permit and that is within the boundaries of the eligible community 
designated on the permit. The geographic boundaries of the eligible 
community will be those defined by the United States Census Bureau.
    (ii) Community charter halibut permits may be used only within the 
regulatory area for which they are designated to catch and retain 
halibut.
    (6) Application procedure. To be complete, a community charter 
halibut permit application must be signed and dated by the applicant, 
and the applicant must attest that, to the best of the applicants' 
knowledge, all statements in the application are true and complete. An 
application for a community charter halibut permit will be made 
available by NMFS and may be submitted by mail, hand delivery, or 
facsimile at any time to the address(s) listed on the application. 
Electronic deliveries other than facsimile will not be accepted.

[[Page 219]]

    (7) An annual report on the use of charter halibut permits must be 
submitted by the CQE as required at Sec. 679.5(t) of this title.
    (l) Military charter halibut permit. NMFS will issue a military 
charter halibut permit without an angler endorsement to an applicant 
provided that the applicant is a Morale, Welfare and Recreation Program 
of the United States Armed Services.
    (1) Limitations. A military charter halibut permit is non-
transferable and may be used only in the regulatory area (2C or 3A) 
designated on the permit.
    (2) Application procedure. An applicant may apply for a military 
charter halibut permit at any time. To be complete, a military charter 
halibut permit application must be signed and dated by the applicant, 
and the applicant must attest that, to the best of the applicants' 
knowledge, all statements in the application are true and complete. An 
application for a military charter halibut permit will be made available 
by NMFS and may be submitted by mail, hand delivery, or facsimile at any 
time to the address(s) listed on the application. Electronic deliveries 
other than facsimile will not be accepted.

[75 FR 600, Jan. 5, 2010, as amended at 75 FR 56909, Sept. 17, 2010; 78 
FR 33650, June 4, 2013; 78 FR 75890, Dec. 12, 2013; 80 FR 35207, June 
19, 2015]



Sec. Figure 1 to Subpart E of Part 300--Sitka Local Area Management Plan
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TR18JY05.000


[[Page 220]]





Sec. Figure 2 to Subpart E of Part 300--Southern Southeast Alaska Rural 
                           and Non-Rural Areas
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TR04NO09.008


[74 FR 57110, Nov. 4, 2009]

[[Page 221]]



Sec. Figure 3 to Subpart E of Part 300--Northern Southeast Alaska Rural 
                           and Non-Rural Areas
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TR04NO09.009


[74 FR 57110, Nov. 4, 2009]

[[Page 222]]



 Sec. Figure 4 to Subpart E of Part 300--Prince William Sound Rural and 
                             Non-Rural Areas
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TR04NO09.010


[74 FR 57110, Nov. 4, 2009]

[[Page 223]]



 Sec. Figure 5 to Subpart E of Part 300--Anchorage, Matanuska-Susitna, 
                   and Kenai Rural and Non-Rural Areas
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TR04NO09.011


[74 FR 57110, Nov. 4, 2009]

[[Page 224]]



 Sec. Figure 6 to Subpart E of Part 300--Alaska Peninsula and Aleutian 
                    Islands Rural and Non-Rural Areas
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TR04NO09.012


[74 FR 57110, Nov. 4, 2009]

[[Page 225]]



Sec. Figure 7 to Subpart E of Part 300--Western and Central Alaska Rural 
                           and Non-Rural Areas
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TR04NO09.013


[74 FR 57110, Nov. 4, 2009]

[[Page 226]]



  Sec. Table 1 to Subpart E of Part 300-- Determination of Commission 
Regulatory Area 2C Annual Commercial Allocation From the Annual Combined 
                         Catch Limit for Halibut

------------------------------------------------------------------------
  If the area 2C annual combined catch       then the area 2C annual
     limit (CCL) in net pounds is:          commercial allocation is:
------------------------------------------------------------------------
<5,000,000 lb..........................  81.7% of the Area 2C CCL.
$5,000,000 and 5,755,000 lb............  the Area 2C CCL minus a fixed
                                          915,000-lb allocation to the
                                          charter halibut fishery.
>5,755,000 lb..........................  84.1% of the Area 2C CCL.
------------------------------------------------------------------------


[78 FR 75890, Dec. 12, 2013]



   Sec. Table 2 to Subpart E of Part 300--Determination of Commission 
Regulatory Area 3A Annual Commercial Allocation From the Annual Combined 
                         Catch Limit for Halibut

------------------------------------------------------------------------
  If the area 3A annual combined catch       then the area 3A annual
     limit (CCL) in net pounds is:          commercial allocation is:
------------------------------------------------------------------------
<10,000,000 lb.........................  81.1% of the Area 3A CCL.
$10,000,000 and 10,800,000 lb..........  the Area 3A CCL minus a fixed
                                          1,890,000-lb allocation to the
                                          charter halibut fishery.
>10,800,000 and 20,000,000 lb..........  82.5% of the Area 3A CCL.
>20,000,000 and 25,000,000 lb..........  the Area 3A CCL minus a fixed
                                          3,500,000-lb allocation to the
                                          charter halibut fishery.
>25,000,000 lb.........................  86.0% of the Area 3A CCL.
------------------------------------------------------------------------


[78 FR 75890, Dec. 12, 2013]



   Sec. Table 3 to Subpart E of Part 300--Determination of Commission 
  Regulatory Area 2C Annual Charter Halibut Allocation From the Annual 
                          Combined Catch Limit

------------------------------------------------------------------------
  If the area 2C annual combined catch   then the area 2C annual charter
  limit for halibut in net pounds is:             allocation is:
------------------------------------------------------------------------
<5,000,000 lb..........................  18.3% of the Area 2C CCL.
$5,000,000 and 5,755,000 lb............  915,000 lb.
>5,755,000 lb..........................  15.9% of the Area 2C CCL.
------------------------------------------------------------------------


[78 FR 75890, Dec. 12, 2013]



   Sec. Table 4 to Subpart E of Part 300--Determination of Commission 
  Regulatory Area 3A Annual Charter Halibut Allocation From the Annual 
                          Combined Catch Limit

------------------------------------------------------------------------
  If the area 3A annual combined catch
 limit (CCL) for halibut in net pounds   then the area 3A annual charter
                  is:                             allocation is:
------------------------------------------------------------------------
<10,000,000 lb.........................  18.9% of the Area 3A annual
                                          combined catch limit.
$10,000,000 and 10,800,000 lb..........  1,890,000 lb.
>10,800,000 and 20,000,000 lb..........  17.5% of the Area 3A annual
                                          combined catch limit.
>20,000,000 and 25,000,000 lb..........  3,500,000 lb.
>25,000,000 lb.........................  14.0% of the Area 3A annual
                                          combined catch limit.
------------------------------------------------------------------------


[78 FR 75890, Dec. 12, 2013]



        Subpart F_Fraser River Sockeye and Pink Salmon Fisheries

    Authority: Pacific Salmon Treaty Act, 16 U.S.C. 3636(b).



Sec. 300.90  Purpose and scope.

    This subpart implements the Pacific Salmon Treaty Act of 1985 (16 
U.S.C. 3631-3644) (Act) and is intended to supplement, not conflict 
with, the fishery

[[Page 227]]

regimes and Fraser River Panel regulations adopted under the Treaty 
between the Government of the United States of America and the 
Government of Canada Concerning Pacific Salmon, signed at Ottawa, 
January 28, 1985 (Treaty).



Sec. 300.91  Definitions.

    In addition to the terms defined in Sec. 300.2 and those in the Act 
and the Treaty, the terms used in this subpart have the following 
meanings. If a term is defined differently in Sec. 300.2, the Act, or 
the Treaty, the definition in this section shall apply.
    All-citizen means any person who is not a treaty Indian fishing in 
that treaty Indian's tribal treaty fishing places pursuant to treaty 
Indian tribal fishing regulations (whether in compliance with such 
regulations or not).
    Authorized officer means, in addition to those individuals 
identified under authorized officer at Sec. 300.2, any state, Federal, 
or other officer as may be authorized by the Secretary in writing, 
including any treaty Indian tribal enforcement officer authorized to 
enforce tribal fishing regulations.
    Commission means the Pacific Salmon Commission established by the 
Pacific Salmon Treaty.
    Consistent regulation or consistent order means any Federal, state, 
or treaty Indian tribal regulation or order that is in addition to and 
not in conflict with (at least as restrictive as) any regime of the 
Commission, Fraser River Panel regulation, inseason order of the 
Secretary, or these regulations.
    Fishing gear--
    (1) Gill net means a fishing net of single web construction, not 
anchored, tied, staked, placed, or weighted in such a manner that it 
cannot drift.
    (2) Purse seine means all types of fishing gear consisting of a lead 
line, cork line, auxiliary lines, purse line and purse rings and of mesh 
net webbing fashioned in such a manner that it is used to encircle fish, 
and in addition prevent their escape under the bottom or lead line of 
the net by drawing in the bottom of the net by means of the purse line 
so that it forms a closed bag.
    (3) Reef net means a non-self-fishing open bunt square or 
rectangular section of mesh netting suspended between two anchored boats 
fashioned in such a manner that to impound salmon passing over the net, 
the net must be raised to the surface.
    (4) Troll fishing gear means one or more lines that drag hooks with 
bait or lures behind a moving fishing vessel.
    (5) Treaty Indian fishing gear means fishing gear defined 
authorized, and identified under treaty Indian tribal laws and 
regulations in accordance with the requirements of Final Decision No. 1 
and subsequent orders in United States v. Washington, 384 F. Supp. 312 
(W.D. Wash., 1974).
    Fraser River Panel means the Fraser River Panel established by the 
Pacific Salmon Treaty.
    Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) means the United States' portion of 
the Fraser River Panel Area specified in Annex II of the Treaty as 
follows:
    (1) The territorial water and the high seas westward from the 
western coast of Canada and the United States of America and from a 
direct line drawn from Bonilla Point, Vancouver Island, to the 
lighthouse of Tatoosh Island, Washington--which line marks the entrance 
of Juan de Fuca Strait--and embraced between 48 and 49 N. lat., 
excepting therefrom, however, all the waters of Barkley Sound, eastward 
of a straight line drawn from Amphitrite Point to Cape Beale and all the 
waters of Nitinat Lake and the entrance thereto.
    (2) The waters included within the following boundaries: Beginning 
at Bonilla Point, Vancouver Island, thence along the aforesaid direct 
line drawn from Bonilla Point to Tatoosh Lighthouse, Washington, 
described in paragraph (1) of this definition, thence to the nearest 
point of Cape Flattery, thence following the southerly shore of Juan de 
Fuca Strait to Point Wilson, on Whidbey Island, thence following the 
western shore of the said Whidbey Island, to the entrance to Deception 
Pass, thence across said entrance to the southern side of Reservation 
Bay, on Fidalgo Island, thence following the western and northern shore 
line of the said Fidalgo Island to Swinomish Slough, crossing the said 
Swinomish Slough, in line with the track of the Great Northern Railway 
(Burlington Northern Railroad), thence northerly

[[Page 228]]

following the shoreline of the mainland to Atkinson Point at the 
northerly entrance to Burrard Inlet, British Columbia, thence in a 
straight line to the southern end of Bowen Island, then westerly 
following the southern shore of Bowen Island to Cape Roger Curtis, 
thence in a straight line to Gower Point, thence westerly following the 
shoreline to Welcome Point on Sechelt Peninsula, thence in a straight 
line to Point Young on Lasqueti Island, thence in a straight line to 
Dorcas Point on Vancouver Island, thence following the eastern and 
southern shores of the said Vancouver Island, to the starting point at 
Bonilla Point, as shown on the British Admiralty Chart Number 579, and 
on the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey Chart Number 6300, as corrected to 
March 14, 1930, copies of which are annexed to the 1930 Convention 
between Canada and the United States of America for Protection, 
Preservation, and Extension of the Sockeye Salmon Fishery in the Fraser 
River System as amended, signed May 26, 1930. [Note: U.S. Coast and 
Geodetic Survey Chart Number 6300 has been replaced and updated by NOAA 
Chart Number 18400.]
    (3) The Fraser River and the streams and lakes tributary thereto.
    (4) The Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) includes Puget Sound 
Management and Catch Reporting Areas 4B, 5, 6, 6A, 6B, 6C, 6D, 7, 7A, 
7B, 7C, 7D, and 7E as defined in the Washington State Administrative 
Code at Chapter 220-22 as of June 27, 1986.
    Fraser River Panel regulations means regulations applicable to the 
Fraser River Panel Area that are recommended by the Commission (on the 
basis of proposals made by the Fraser River Panel) and approved by the 
Secretary of State.
    Mesh size means the distance between the inside of one knot to the 
outside of the opposite (vertical) knot in one mesh of a net.
    Pink salmon means Oncorhynchus gorbuscha.
    Sockeye salmon means the anadromous form of Oncorhynchus nerka.
    Treaty fishing places (of an Indian tribe) means locations within 
the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) as determined in or in accordance 
with Final Decision No. 1 and subsequent orders in United States v. 
Washington, 384 F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash. 1974), to be places at which 
that treaty Indian tribe may take fish under rights secured by treaty 
with the United States.
    Treaty Indian means any member of a treaty Indian tribe whose treaty 
fishing place is in the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) or any assistant 
to a treaty Indian authorized to assist in accordance with 
Sec. 300.95(d).
    Treaty Indian tribe means any of the federally recognized Indian 
tribes of the State of Washington having fishing rights secured by 
treaty with the United States to fish for salmon stocks subject to the 
Pacific Salmon Treaty in treaty fishing places within the Fraser River 
Panel Area (U.S.). Currently these tribes are the Makah, Tribe, Lower 
Elwha Klallam Tribe, Port Gamble Klallam Tribe, Jamestown Klallam Tribe, 
Suquamish Tribe, Lummi Tribe, Nooksack Tribe, the Swinomish Indian 
Tribal Community, and the Tulalip Tribe.



Sec. 300.92  Relation to other laws.

    (a) Insofar as they are consistent with this part, any other 
applicable Federal law or regulation, or any applicable law and 
regulations of the State of Washington or of a treaty Indian tribe with 
treaty fishing rights in the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) will 
continue to have force and effect in the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) 
with respect to fishing activities addressed herein.
    (b) Any person fishing subject to this subpart is bound by the 
international boundaries now recognized by the United States within the 
Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) described in Sec. 300.91, notwithstanding 
any dispute or negotiation between the United States and Canada 
regarding their respective jurisdictions, until such time as different 
boundaries are published by the United States.
    (c) Any person fishing in the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) who 
also fishes for groundfish in the EEZ should consult Federal regulations 
at part 663 of this title for applicable requirements, including the 
requirement that vessels engaged in commercial fishing for

[[Page 229]]

groundfish (except commercial passenger vessels) have vessel 
identification in accordance with Sec. 663.6. Federal regulations 
governing salmon fishing in the EEZ, which includes a portion of the 
Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.), are at part 661 of this title. Annual 
regulatory modifications are published in the Federal Register.
    (d) Except as otherwise provided in this subpart, general provisions 
governing off-reservation fishing by treaty Indians are found at 25 CFR 
part 249, subpart A. Additional general and specific provisions 
governing treaty Indian fisheries are found in regulations and laws 
promulgated by each treaty Indian tribe for fishermen fishing pursuant 
to tribal authorization.
    (e) Nothing in this subpart relieves a person from any other 
applicable requirements lawfully imposed by the United States, the State 
of Washington, or a treaty Indian tribe.



Sec. 300.93  Reporting requirements.

    Any person fishing for sockeye or pink salmon within the Fraser 
River Panel Area (U.S.) and any person receiving or purchasing fish 
caught by such persons are subject to State of Washington reporting 
requirements at Washington Administrative Code, Chapter 220-69. Treaty 
Indian fishermen are subject also to tribal reporting requirements. No 
separate Federal reports are required.



Sec. 300.94  Prohibitions and restrictions.

    In addition to the prohibitions in Sec. 300.4, the following 
prohibitions and restrictions apply.
    (a) In addition to the prohibited acts set forth in the Act at 16 
U.S.C. 3637(a), the following restrictions apply to sockeye and pink 
salmon fishing in the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.):
    (1) The Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) is closed to sockeye and pink 
salmon fishing, unless opened by Fraser River Panel regulations or by 
inseason orders of the Secretary issued under Sec. 300.97 that give 
effect to orders of the Fraser River Panel, unless such orders are 
determined not to be consistent with domestic legal obligations. Such 
regulations and inseason orders may be further implemented by 
regulations promulgated by the United States, the State of Washington, 
or any treaty Indian tribe, which are also consistent with domestic 
legal obligations.
    (2) It is unlawful for any person or fishing vessel subject to the 
jurisdiction of the United States to fish for, or take and retain, any 
sockeye or pink salmon:
    (i) Except during times or in areas that are opened by Fraser River 
Panel regulations or by inseason order, except that this provision will 
not prohibit the direct transport of legally caught sockeye or pink 
salmon to offloading areas.
    (ii) By means of gear or methods not authorized by Fraser River 
Panel regulations, inseason orders, or other applicable Federal, state, 
or treaty Indian tribal law.
    (iii) In violation of any applicable area, season, species, zone, 
gear, or mesh size restriction.
    (b) It is unlawful for any person or fishing vessel subject to the 
jurisdiction of the United States to--
    (1) Remove the head of any sockeye or pink salmon caught in the 
Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.), or possess a salmon with the head 
removed, if that salmon has been marked by removal of the adipose fin to 
indicate that a coded wire tag has been implanted in the head of the 
fish.
    (2) Fail to permit an authorized officer to inspect a record or 
report required by the State of Washington or treaty Indian tribal 
authority.
    (c) Notwithstanding paragraph (a) of this section, nothing in this 
subpart will be construed to prohibit the retention of sockeye or pink 
salmon caught by any person while lawfully engaged in a fishery for 
subsistence or ceremonial purposes pursuant to treaty Indian tribal 
regulations, for recreational purposes pursuant to recreational fishing 
regulations promulgated by the State of Washington, or as otherwise 
authorized by treaty Indian tribal or State of Washington law or 
regulation, provided that such treaty Indian tribal or State regulation 
is consistent with U.S.-approved Commission fishery regimes, Fraser 
River Panel regulations, or inseason orders of the Secretary applicable 
to fishing in the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.).

[[Page 230]]

    (d) The following types of fishing gear are authorized, subject to 
the restrictions set forth in this subpart and according to the times 
and areas established by Fraser River Panel regulations or inseason 
orders of the Secretary:
    (1) All citizens: Gill net, purse seine, reef net, and troll fishing 
gear. Specific restrictions on all citizens gear are contained in the 
Washington State Administrative Code of Chapter 220-47.
    (2) Treaty Indians: Treaty Indian fishing gear.
    (e) Geographic descriptions of Puget Sound Salmon Management and 
Catch Reporting Areas, which are referenced in the Commission's regimes, 
Fraser River Panel regulations, and in inseason orders of the Secretary, 
are found in the Washington State Administrative Code at Chapter 220-22.



Sec. 300.95  Treaty Indian fisheries.

    (a) Any treaty Indian must comply with this section when fishing for 
sockeye and pink salmon at the treaty Indian tribe's treaty fishing 
places in the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) during the time the 
Commission or the Secretary exercises jurisdiction over these fisheries. 
Fishing by a treaty Indian outside the applicable Indian tribe's treaty 
fishing places will be subject to the Fraser River Panel regulations and 
inseason orders applicable to all citizens, as well as to the 
restrictions set forth in this section.
    (b) Nothing in this section will relieve a treaty Indian from any 
applicable law or regulation imposed by a treaty Indian tribe, or from 
requirements lawfully imposed by the United States or the State of 
Washington in accordance with the requirements of Final Decision No. 1 
and subsequent orders in United States v. Washington, 384 F. Supp. 312 
(W.D. Wash., 1974).
    (c) Identification. (1) Any treaty Indian fishing under the 
authority of this subpart must have in his or her possession at all 
times while fishing or engaged in any activity related to fishing the 
treaty Indian identification required by 25 CFR 249.3 or by applicable 
tribal law.
    (2) Any person assisting a treaty Indian under the authority of 
paragraph (d) of this section must have in his or her possession at all 
such times a valid identification card issued by the Bureau of Indian 
Affairs or by a treaty Indian tribe, identifying the holder as a person 
qualified to assist a treaty Indian. The identification card must 
include the name of the issuing tribe, the name, address, date of birth, 
and photograph of the assistant, and the name and identification number 
of the treaty Indian whom the assistant is authorized to assist.
    (3) Identification described in paragraph (c) (1) or (2) of this 
section must be shown on demand to an authorized officer by the treaty 
Indian or authorized assistant.
    (4) Any treaty Indian fishing under this subpart must comply with 
the treaty Indian vessel and gear identification requirements of Final 
Decision No. 1 and subsequent orders in United States v. Washington, 384 
F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash., 1974).
    (d) Fishing assistance. (1) Any member of a treaty Indian tribe 
fishing under this subpart may, if authorized by the treaty Indian's 
tribe, receive fishing assistance from, and only from, the treaty Indian 
tribal member's spouse, forebears, children, grandchildren, and 
siblings, as authorized by the U.S. District Court for the Western 
District of Washington in United States v. Washington, 384 F. Supp. 312 
(W.D. Wash., 1974). For purposes of this section, the treaty Indian 
tribal member whom the assistant is authorized to assist must be present 
aboard the fishing vessel at all times while engaged in the exercise of 
treaty Indian fishing rights subject to this subpart.
    (2) No treaty Indian may, while fishing at a treaty fishing place in 
accordance with treaty-secured fishing rights, permit any person 16 
years of age or older other than the authorized holder of a currently 
valid identification card issued in accordance with the requirements of 
paragraphs (c) (1) and (2) of this section to fish for said treaty 
Indian, assist said treaty Indian in fishing, or use any gear or fishing 
location identified as said treaty Indian's gear or location.
    (3) Treaty Indians are prohibited from participating in a treaty 
Indian fishery under this section at any time persons who are not treaty 
Indians are

[[Page 231]]

aboard the fishing vessel or in contact with fishing gear operated from 
the fishing vessel, unless such persons are authorized employees or 
officers of a treaty Indian tribe or tribal fisheries management 
organization, the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission, the Commission, 
or a fisheries management agency of the United States or the State of 
Washington.



Sec. 300.96  Penalties.

    Any treaty Indian who commits any act that is unlawful under this 
subpart normally will be referred to the applicable tribe for 
prosecution and punishment. If such tribe fails to prosecute such 
persons in a diligent manner for the offense(s) referred to the tribe, 
or if other good cause exists, such treaty Indian may be subject to the 
penalties and procedures described in the Magnuson-Stevens Act.



Sec. 300.97  Inseason orders.

    (a) During the fishing season, the Secretary may issue orders that 
establish fishing times and areas consistent with the annual Commission 
regime and inseason orders of the Fraser River Panel. Inseason orders 
will be consistent with domestic legal obligations. Violation of such 
inseason orders is violation of this subpart.
    (b) Notice of inseason orders. (1) Official notice of such inseason 
orders is available from NMFS (for orders applicable to all-citizen 
fisheries) and from the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission (for 
orders applicable to treaty Indian fisheries) through Area Code 206 
toll-free telephone hotlines. All-citizen fisheries: the hotline 
telephone number is published in the inseason notice procedures section 
of the annual management measures for West Coast Salmon Fisheries, 
published in the Federal Register; Treaty Indian fisheries hotline: 1-
800-562-6142.
    (2) Notice of inseason orders of the Secretary and other applicable 
tribal regulations may be published and released according to tribal 
procedures in accordance with Final Decision No. 1 and subsequent orders 
in United States v. Washington, 384 F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash., 1974).
    (3) Inseason orders may also be communicated through news releases 
to radio and television stations and newspapers in the Fraser River 
Panel Area (U.S.).
    (4) Inseason orders of the Secretary will also be published in the 
Federal Register as soon as practicable after they are issued.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 74 FR 44771, Aug. 31, 2009]



               Subpart G_Antarctic Marine Living Resources

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 2431 et seq., 31 U.S.C. 9701 et seq.

    Source: 82 FR 6223, Jan. 19, 2017, unless otherwise noted.



Sec. 300.100  Purpose and scope.

    (a) This subpart implements the Antarctic Marine Living Resources 
Convention Act of 1984 (AMLRCA or Act), 16 U.S.C. 2431 et seq.
    (b) This subpart regulates--
    (1) The harvesting of Antarctic marine living resources and other 
associated activities by any person subject to the jurisdiction of the 
United States or by any vessel of the United States.
    (2) The import, export, and re-export into the United States of any 
Antarctic marine living resource.



Sec. 300.101  Definitions.

    In addition to the terms defined in Sec. 300.2, in the Act, and in 
the Convention on the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources, 
done at Canberra, Australia, May 7, 1980 (Convention) the terms used in 
this subpart have the following meanings for purposes of this subpart. 
If a term is defined differently in Sec. 300.2, than in the Act, or 
Convention, the definition in this section shall apply.
    ACA means the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (16 U.S.C. 2401, et 
seq.).
    Annual or biennial measure means a conservation measure that:
    (1) Applies to the operation of the Convention's commercial or 
exploratory fisheries such as gear, catch, and effort restrictions and 
time and area closures;
    (2) Generally expires after one or two fishing season(s); and

[[Page 232]]

    (3) Does not require the development of policy options or a 
regulatory framework.
    Antarctic convergence means a line joining the following points 
along the parallels of latitude and meridians of longitude:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                   Lat.                                 Long.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
50 S......................................  0.
50 S......................................  30 E.
45 S......................................  30 E.
45 S......................................  80 E.
55 S......................................  80 E.
55 S......................................  150 E.
60 S......................................  150 E.
60 S......................................  50 W.
50 S......................................  50 W.
50 S......................................  0.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Antarctic marine living resources or AMLR(s) means:
    (1) The populations of finfish, mollusks, crustaceans, and all other 
species of living organisms, including birds, found south of the 
Antarctic Convergence;
    (2) All parts or products of those populations and species set forth 
in paragraph (1) of this definition.
    Centralized Vessel Monitoring System (C-VMS) means the system 
operated by the Secretariat of CCAMLR that receives reports of 
positional and other information from satellite-linked mobile 
transceiver units located on vessels that are submitted to the CCAMLR 
Secretariat, either directly from the vessel or through the relevant 
flag State.
    Commission or CCAMLR means the Commission for the Conservation of 
Antarctic Marine Living Resources established under Article VII of the 
Convention.
    Convention Area means all waters south of the Antarctic Convergence.
    Dealer means a person who imports AMLRs into, or exports or re-
exports AMLRs from, the United States.
    Dissostichus catch document (DCD) is a document generated through 
CCAMLR's electronic catch documentation scheme (CDS), containing 
information relating to the harvest, landing, and transshipment of 
Dissostichus species.
    Dissostichus export document (DED) is a document generated through 
the CCAMLR's electronic CDS, containing information relating to the 
export of Dissostichus spp.
    Dissostichus re-export document (DRED) is a document generated 
through CCAMLR's electronic CDS, containing information relating to the 
re-export of Dissostichus spp.
    Dissostichus species or Dissostichus spp. means Patagonian toothfish 
and Antarctic toothfish, and any parts or products therefrom.
    Enhanced mobile transceiver unit or EMTU means a transceiver or 
communication device, including all hardware and software, carried and 
operated on a vessel as part of a vessel monitoring system.
    Export means any movement of fish or fish product from a territory 
under the control of the State or free trade zone of landing, or, where 
that State or free trade zone forms part of a customs union, any other 
Member State of that customs union.
    First receiver means the person who first receives AMLRs landed from 
a vessel licensed under 50 CFR 300.107 at a U.S. port.
    Fish means finfish, mollusks, and crustaceans.
    Fishery means:
    (1) One or more stocks of fish that are treated as a unit for 
purposes of conservation and management and that are identified on the 
basis of geographical, scientific, technical, recreational, and economic 
characteristics.
    (2) Any fishing for such stocks.
    Harvesting vessel means any vessel of the United States (including 
any boat, ship, or other craft), that is used for, equipped to be used 
for, or of a type that is normally used for harvesting.
    Import means the physical entering or bringing of a fish or fish 
product into any part of the geographical territory under the control of 
a State, except where the catch is landed or transshipped within the 
definitions of landing or transshipment.
    Individual permit means a National Science Foundation (NSF) permit 
issued under 45 CFR part 670; or an NSF award letter (demonstrating that 
the individual has received an award from NSF to do research in the 
Antarctic); or a marine mammal permit issued under Sec. 216.31 of this 
chapter; or

[[Page 233]]

an endangered species permit issued under Sec. 222.21 of this chapter.
    Inspection vessel means a vessel carrying a CCAMLR inspector and 
displaying the pennant approved by CCAMLR to identify such vessel.
    International observer means a scientific observer operating in 
accordance with the CCAMLR Scheme of International Scientific 
Observation and the terms of a bilateral arrangement concluded between 
the United States and another member of CCAMLR for the placement of a 
U.S. national onboard a vessel flagged by another member of CCAMLR or 
for the placement of the national of another member of CCAMLR onboard a 
vessel of the United States.
    Land or Landing means to begin offloading any fish, to arrive in 
port with the intention of offloading any fish, or to cause any fish to 
be offloaded. However, for purposes of catch documentation as provided 
for in Sec. 300.106, land or landing means the initial unloading or 
transfer of Dissostichus spp. in any form from a vessel to dockside even 
if such fish are subsequently transferred to a container or to another 
vessel in a port or free trade zone.
    National observer means a U.S. national placed and operating onboard 
a vessel of the United States as a scientific observer in accordance 
with Sec. 300.111.
    National Seafood Inspection Laboratory means the NMFS laboratory 
located at 3209 Frederic Street, Pascagoula, MS 39567, telephone (228) 
769-8964, email PTFReporting@noaa.gov.
    Office of Law Enforcement (OLE) refers to the NOAA Office of Law 
Enforcement.
    Port-to-port means from the time the vessel leaves port to the time 
that the vessel returns to port and at all points in between.
    Real-time means as soon as possible, but at least every hour with no 
more than a 1-hour delay.
    Recreational fishing means fishing with hook and line for personal 
use and not for sale.
    Re-export means any movement of a fish or fish product from a 
territory under the control of a State, free trade zone, or Member State 
of a customs union of import unless that State, free trade zone, or any 
Member State of that customs union is the first place of landing, in 
which case the movement is an export within the definition of export.
    Seal excluder device means a barrier within the body of a trawl 
comprised of a metal frame, nylon mesh, or any material that results in 
an obstruction to seals between the mouth opening and the cod end of the 
trawl. The body of the trawl net forward of the barrier must include an 
escape opening through which seals entering the trawl can escape.
    Specially Validated Dissostichus Catch Document (SVDCD) means a 
Dissostichus catch document that has been specially issued by a State to 
accompany seized or confiscated Dissostichus spp. offered for sale or 
otherwise disposed of by the State.
    Transship or transshipment means the transfer of fish or fish 
products, other AMLRs, or any other goods or materials directly from one 
vessel to another. However, for purposes of catch documentation as 
provided for in Sec. 300.106, transship or transshipment means the 
transfer of Dissostichus spp. that has not been previously landed, from 
one vessel directly to another, either at sea or in port.
    Vessel Monitoring System (VMS) means a system that uses satellite-
linked EMTUs installed on vessels to allow a flag State or other entity 
to receive automatic transmission of positional and other information 
related to vessel activity.



Sec. 300.102  Relationship to other treaties, conventions, laws, and regulations.

    (a) Other conventions and treaties to which the United States is a 
party and other Federal statutes and implementing regulations may impose 
additional restrictions on the harvesting and importation into the 
United States of AMLRs.
    (b) The ACA implements the Antarctic Treaty Agreed Measures for the 
Conservation of Antarctic Fauna and Flora (12 U.S.T. 794). The ACA and 
its implementing regulations (45 CFR part 670) apply to certain defined 
activities of U.S. citizens south of 60 S. lat.

[[Page 234]]

    (c) The Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972 (16 U.S.C. 1361 et 
seq.), the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.), the 
Migratory Bird Treaty Act (16 U.S.C. 701 et seq.), and their 
implementing regulations also apply to the harvesting and importation of 
AMLRs.
    (d) Rule making exceptions. When implementing conservation measures 
adopted and notified by CCAMLR, NMFS may apply the following exceptions 
to Administrative Procedure Act (APA) rulemaking requirements at 5 
U.S.C. 553(b)-(d):
    (1) The foreign affairs function exception of the APA, 5 U.S.C. 
553(a)(1); or
    (2) The exception under subsection 307(b) of AMLRCA, 16 U.S.C. 
2436(b), that provides that, notwithstanding 5 U.S.C. 553(b)-(d), NMFS 
may publish in the Federal Register a final regulation to implement any 
CCAMLR-adopted conservation measure--
    (i) That has been in effect for 12 months or less, beginning on the 
date that the Commission notifies the United States of the conservation 
measure under Article IX of the Convention; and
    (ii) With respect to which the Secretary of State does not notify 
the Commission in accordance with section 305(a)(1) of AMLRCA within the 
time period allotted for objections under Article IX of the Convention.
    (e) Annual or biennial measures. NMFS may implement annual or 
biennial measures adopted by CCAMLR as conditions to vessel permits 
issued under section 300.107, instead of through rulemaking.



Sec. 300.103  Scientific research.

    (a) This section applies to any person, using a vessel for research 
purposes, who intends to catch more than 1 tonne of finfish or krill or 
use gear other than longline, trawl, or pot to catch Dissostichus spp.
    (b) Any person planning to use a vessel for research purposes, when 
the estimated research catch is expected to be less than 50 tonnes of 
finfish in a season, and no more than the amounts specified in Table 1, 
must notify the Assistant Administrator at least 2 months in advance of 
the planned research using the CCAMLR Format for Notification of 
Research Vessel Activity, Format 1. A copy of the format is available 
from NMFS Headquarters. The format requires:
    (1) Name and registration number of vessel;
    (2) Division and subarea in which research is to be carried out;
    (3) Estimated dates of entering and leaving the Convention Area;
    (4) Purposes of research; and
    (5) Fishing equipment to be used (bottom trawl, midwater trawl, 
longline, crab pots, other).

  Table 1--Taxa-Specific Thresholds for Notification of Research Vessel
                                Activity
------------------------------------------------------------------------
             Taxon                  Gear type          Expected catch
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Thresholds for finfish taxa:
    Dissostichus spp..........  Longline.........  5 tonnes.
                                Trawl............  5 tonnes.
                                Pot..............  5 tonnes.
                                Other............  0 tonnes.
    Champsocephalus gunnari...  All..............  10 tonnes.
Thresholds for non-finfish
 taxa:
    Krill.....................  All..............  0.1 percent of the
                                                    catch limit for a
                                                    given area.
    Squid.....................
    Crabs.....................
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (c) Any person planning to use any vessel for research purposes, 
when the estimated research catch is expected to be more than 50 tonnes 
or greater than the amounts specified in Table 1 must report the details 
of the research plan to NMFS using CCAMLR Format 2 for Notification of 
Research Vessel Activity. The format must be submitted to Assistant 
Administrator at least 7 months in advance of the planned start date for 
the research. A copy of the format is available from NMFS Headquarters. 
The format requires:

[[Page 235]]

    (1) Description of the main objective of the research;
    (2) Description of the fishery operations;
    (3) Description of the survey design, data collection, and analysis;
    (4) Proposed catch limit;
    (5) Description of the research capability; and
    (6) Description of the reporting for evaluation and review.
    (d) Where the expected catch is more than 50 tonnes of fish or 
greater than the amounts specified in Table 1, the planned fishing for 
research purposes shall not proceed until the Assistant Administrator 
authorizes the person in writing that he or she may proceed. Such 
authorization may be provided after completion of review of the 
scientific research plan by the CCAMLR Scientific Committee and 
Commission.
    (e) A summary of the results of any research subject to these 
provisions must be provided to the Assistant Administrator within 150 
days of the completion of the research and a full report must be 
provided within 11 months.
    (f) Catch, effort, and biological data resulting from the research 
must be reported using the reporting format for research vessels in 
accordance with relevant conservation measures, with a copy to NMFS 
Headquarters.



Sec. 300.104  International Fisheries Trade Permits and AMLR first receiver permits.

    (a) General. (1) A person may import, export, or re-export AMLR into 
the United States only under a NMFS-issued International Fisheries Trade 
Permit (IFTP). For AMLRs to be released for entry into the United 
States, the product must be accompanied by a vessel permit, individual 
permit, AMLR first receiver permit, or IFTP.
    (2) All shipments of Dissostichus spp. must also be accompanied by 
accurate, complete and valid CDS documentation (including all required 
validations and DEDs/DREDs) as described in Sec. 300.106, and, in the 
case of shipments of frozen Dissostichus species, a preapproval 
certificate issued under Sec. 300.105, as well as verifiable information 
that the harvesting vessel was reporting to C-VMS from port-to-port, 
regardless of where the fish were harvested. For purposes of entry of 
Dissostichus spp. into the United States, NMFS will only accept 
electronic CDS documents described in Sec. 300.106.
    (3) Imports of fresh or frozen Dissostichus spp. accompanied by an 
SVDCD are prohibited.
    (b) International Fisheries Trade Permit. A person intending to 
import, export, or re-export AMLR must possess a valid IFTP issued under 
Sec. 300.322 and file required data sets electronically with Customs and 
Border Protection (CBP) at the time, or in advance, of importation, 
exportation or re-exportation. ``Required data set'' has the same 
meaning as Sec. 300.321 (see definition of ``Documentation and data sets 
required''). See Sec. 300.322 for IFTP application procedures and permit 
regulations. The IFTP holder may only conduct those specific activities 
stipulated by the IFTP.
    (c) AMLR First Receiver Permits--(1) General. First receivers of 
AMLR catch landed from a vessel permitted under Sec. 300.107 at a U.S. 
port of landing must possess an AMLR first receiver permit and may only 
conduct those activities described in the permit. A person issued, or 
required to have been issued a first receiver permit under this subpart 
may only receive fish from a U.S. vessel that has a valid vessel permit 
issued under Sec. 300.107 as well as a valid High Seas Fishing Permit 
issued under 50 CFR part 300, subpart R.
    (2) Application. Applications for the AMLR first receiver permit are 
available from NMFS Headquarters.
    (3) Issuance. NMFS may issue an AMLR first receiver permit if the 
permit application is complete and NMFS determines that the activity 
proposed by the first receiver meets the requirements of the Act. First 
receivers of AMLR required to have a first receiver permit may only 
receive AMLR that were harvested in a manner consistent with CCAMLR 
conservation measures and this subpart.
    (4) Duration. Unless revoked or suspended, an AMLR first receiver 
permit is valid from its date of issuance to its date of expiration.
    (5) Prohibition on transfer or assignment. AMLR first receiver 
permits are valid only for the person to whom

[[Page 236]]

NMFS issued the permit and may not be transferred or assigned.
    (6) Changes in information submitted by permit applicants or permit 
holders:
    (i) Changes in pending applications. Applicants for an AMLR first 
receiver permit must report any change in the information contained in 
the application to the Assistant Administrator in writing as soon as 
possible.
    (ii) Changes occurring after permit issuance. An AMLR first receiver 
permit holder must report any change to information previously submitted 
to the Assistant Administrator in writing within 15 days of the change. 
Based on such information, the Assistant Administrator may revise the 
permit effective upon notification to the permit holder.
    (7) Fees. NMFS may charge a fee to recover the administrative 
expenses of permit issuance. NMFS will determine the fee in accordance 
with the procedures in the NOAA finance handbook, available from NMFS, 
for calculating administrative costs of special products and services.
    (8) Reporting and recordkeeping requirements. First receivers of 
AMLRs who have been issued, or are required to have, a first receiver 
permit under this subpart must:
    (i) Accurately maintain all reports and records required by their 
first receiver permit and this subpart at their place of business;
    (ii) Maintain the original permit at their place of business;
    (iii) Make their permit, and all required reports and records, 
available for inspection upon the request of an authorized officer; and
    (iv) Within the time specified in the permit, submit a copy of such 
reports and records to NMFS at an address designated by NMFS.
    (d) Revision, suspension, or revocation. NMFS may revise, suspend, 
or revoke an IFTP, or first receiver permit, issued under this section 
based upon a violation of the permit, the Act, or this subpart.
    (e) A person may not import a marine mammal into the United States 
unless authorized and accompanied by an import permit issued under the 
Marine Mammal Protection Act and/or the Endangered Species Act.



Sec. 300.105  Preapproval for importation of frozen Dissostichus species.

    (a) A NMFS-issued preapproval certificate is required to import each 
shipment of frozen Dissostichus species.
    (b) Application. Application forms for a preapproval certificate are 
available from NMFS Headquarters and the National Seafood Inspection 
Laboratory. With the exception of the U.S. Customs 7501 entry number, a 
complete and accurate application must be received by NMFS for each 
preapproval certificate at least 10 working days before the anticipated 
date of the importation. Dealers must supply the U.S. Customs 7501 entry 
number at least three working days prior to the expected arrival of a 
shipment of frozen Dissostichus species at a U.S. port.
    (c) Fees. A person must include the processing fee with each 
preapproval certificate application. NMFS will determine the fee under 
the NOAA finance handbook procedures for calculating administrative 
costs of special products and services and user fees collected for 
administrative expenses associated with processing applications for 
preapproval certificates.
    (d) Issuance. NMFS may issue a preapproval certificate for 
importation of a shipment of frozen Dissostichus species if the 
preapproval application form is complete and NMFS determines that the 
activity proposed by the applicant meets the requirements of the Act and 
that the resources were not harvested in violation of any CCAMLR 
conservation measure or in violation of any regulation in this subpart. 
No preapproval will be issued for Dissostichus species without 
verifiable documentation that the harvesting vessel reported to C-VMS 
continuously and in real-time from port-to-port, regardless of where 
such Dissostichus species were harvested.
    (e) Duration. A preapproval certificate is valid until the 
Dissostichus product specified in the preapproval application is 
imported.
    (f) Transfer. A person may not transfer or assign a preapproval 
certificate.
    (g) Changes in information. (1) For pending preapproval 
certificates, applicants must report in writing to NMFS any changes in 
the information submitted in their preapproval certificate

[[Page 237]]

applications. NMFS may extend the processing period for the application 
as necessary to review and consider any changes.
    (2) Issued preapprovals. For issued preapproval certificates, the 
certificate holder must report in writing to NMFS any changes to 
information included in the preapproval certificate application. Any 
changes related to fish being imported, such as harvesting vessel or 
country of origin, type and quantity of the fish to be imported or 
Convention statistical subarea from which the resource was harvested, 
will void the preapproval certificate and the shipment may not be 
imported unless authorized by NMFS through issuance of a revised or new 
preapproval certificate.
    (3) The provision of false information in a preapproval application, 
or the failure to report a change in the information contained in a 
preapproval application, voids the application or preapproval as 
applicable.
    (h) NMFS will not issue a preapproval certificate for any shipment 
of Dissostichus species:
    (1) Identified as originating from a high seas area designated by 
the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations as 
Statistical Area 51 or Statistical Area 57 in the eastern and western 
Indian Ocean outside and north of the Convention Area;
    (2) Determined to have been harvested or transshipped in 
contravention of any CCAMLR Conservation Measure in force at the time of 
harvest or transshipment;
    (3) Determined to have been harvested or transshipped by a vessel 
identified by CCAMLR as having engaged in illegal, unreported and 
unregulated (IUU) fishing; or
    (3) Accompanied by inaccurate, incomplete, invalid, or improperly 
validated CDS documentation or by a SVDCD.

    Editorial Note: At 82 FR 6223, Jan. 19, 2017, subpart G to part 300 
was revised, and Sec. 300.105 was set out with two paragraphs designated 
(h)(3).



Sec. 300.106  Catch Documentation Scheme (CDS): Documentation and
other requirements.

    (a) General. (1) CCAMLR CDS document(s) must accompany all shipments 
of Dissostichus species as required in this section.
    (2) No shipment of Dissostichus species shall be released for entry 
into the United States unless accompanied by an accurate, complete, 
valid and validated CCAMLR CDS document.
    (3) Dissostichus species shall not be released for entry into the 
United States unless all of the applicable requirements of the CCAMLR 
Conservation Measures and U.S. regulations have been met.
    (b) Harvesting vessels. (1) A U.S. vessel harvesting or attempting 
to harvest Dissostichus species, whether within or outside of the 
Convention Area, must possess a valid vessel permit issued under 
Sec. 300.107, a valid High Seas Fishing Permit issued under 50 CFR part 
300, subpart R, as well as DCD issued by NMFS, which is non-
transferable. The master of the harvesting vessel must ensure that catch 
and other information specified on the DCD are accurately recorded.
    (2) Prior to offloading Dissostichus species, the master of the 
harvesting vessel must:
    (i) Electronically convey, by the most rapid means possible, catch 
and other information to NMFS and record on the DCD a confirmation 
number received from NMFS;
    (ii) Obtain on the DCD (or copies thereof) the signature(s) of the 
following persons: If catch is offloaded for transshipment, the master 
of the vessel(s) to which the catch is transferred; or if catch is 
offloaded for landing, the signature of both the responsible official(s) 
designated by NMFS in the vessel permit and the recipient of the catch 
at the port(s) of landing; and
    (iii) Sign the DCD (or copies thereof), electronically convey by the 
most rapid means possible each copy to NMFS and provide a copy to each 
recipient of the catch.
    (3) The master of the harvesting vessel must submit the original DCD 
(and all copies thereof with original signatures) to NMFS no later than 
30 days after the end of the fishing season for

[[Page 238]]

which the vessel permit was issued and retain copies of the DCD for a 
period of 2 years.
    (c) Transshipment vessels. (1) A U.S. vessel transshipping or 
attempting to transship Dissostichus species, whether within or outside 
of the Convention Area, must possess a valid vessel permit issued under 
Sec. 300.107 and a valid High Seas Fishing Permit issued under subpart R 
of this part. The master of a U.S. vessel receiving Dissostichus species 
by transshipment must, upon receipt of Dissostichus species, sign each 
DCD provided by the master of the vessel that offloads Dissostichus 
species.
    (2) Prior to landing Dissostichus species, the master of the 
transshipping vessel must:
    (i) Obtain on each DCD (or copies thereof) the signature(s) of both 
the responsible official(s) designated by NMFS in the vessel permit and 
the recipient of the catch at the port(s) of landing; and
    (ii) Sign each DCD (or copies thereof), and electronically convey by 
the most rapid means possible each copy to NMFS and to the flag state(s) 
of the offloading vessel(s) and provide a copy to each recipient of 
Dissostichus species.
    (3) The master of the transshipping vessel must submit all DCDs with 
original signatures to NMFS no later than 30 days after offloading and 
retain copies for a period of 2 years.
    (d) First receivers. Any person who receives Dissostichus species 
landed by a vessel at a U.S. port must hold an AMLR first receiver 
permit issued under Sec. 300.104 and must sign the DCD(s) provided by 
the master of the vessel and retain copies at their place of business 
for a period of 2 years. A person issued, or required to have been 
issued, a first receiver permit under this subpart may only receive fish 
from a U.S. vessel that has a valid vessel permit issued under 
Sec. 300.107 as well as a valid High Seas Fishing Permit issued under 50 
CFR part 300, subpart R.
    (e) Import. (1) A person who imports fresh Dissostichus species must 
hold an IFTP issued under Sec. 300.322. To import frozen Dissostichus 
species into the United States, a person must:
    (i) Obtain a preapproval certificate issued under Sec. 300.105 for 
each shipment. Among the information required on the application, 
applicants must provide the document number and export reference number 
on the DED or DRED corresponding to the intended import shipment and, if 
requested by NMFS, additional information for NMFS to verify that the 
harvesting vessel reported to the C-VMS continuously and in real-time, 
from port-to-port, regardless of where the fish were harvested;
    (ii) Ensure that the quantity of toothfish listed on the DED (or the 
Dissostichus re-export document if product is a re-export) matches the 
quantity listed on the preapproval application within a variance of 10 
percent; and
    (iii) Provide copies of the DED or DRED as needed to persons who re-
export Dissostichus species.
    (2) Imports of fresh Dissostichus species do not require a 
preapproval certificate. If the amount or value of the fresh 
Dissostichus species to be imported is below thresholds that trigger the 
requirement to file entry documentation with U.S. Customs and Border 
Protection via the Automated Commercial Environment (see definition in 
Sec. 300.321), the importer must complete a report of each shipment and 
submit the report to NMFS within 24 hours following importation. 
Verification of the harvesting vessel's reporting to C-VMS from port-to-
port is not required for imports of fresh Dissostichus species.
    (f) Re-export. (1) To re-export Dissostichus species, a person must 
hold an IFTP issued under Sec. 300.322 and:
    (i) Submit to NMFS a complete and accurate application for a NMFS 
Dissostichus re-export document, and
    (ii) Obtain validation by a responsible official(s) designated by 
NMFS and receive an electronically-generated DRED.
    (2) When applying for a re-export approval, a person must reference 
or include the approval number issued by NOAA, for the original 
validated Dissostichus import document.
    (g) Export. (1) To export U.S.-harvested Dissostichus species, the 
person

[[Page 239]]

must possess an IFTP issued under Sec. 300.322 and:
    (i) Submit to NMFS a complete and accurate NMFS application for a 
DED; and
    (ii) Obtain validation by a responsible official(s) designated by 
NMFS and receive an electronically-generated DED.
    (2) Any person who exports Dissostichus species must include the 
original validated DED with the export shipment.
    (h) Recordkeeping. Any person who imports, exports or re-exports 
Dissostichus spp. must:
    (1) Retain a copy of all CDS documents at the person's place of 
business for a period of 2 years from the date on the documents and 
provide copies as needed to NMFS; and
    (2) Make the IFTP and all CDS documents and other records and 
reports required by this subpart available for inspection upon request 
of an authorized officer.



Sec. 300.107  Vessel permits and requirements.

    (a) General. In addition to the High Seas Fishing Permit 
requirements at 50 CFR part 300, subpart R:
    (1) Every vessel of the United States that attempts to harvest or 
harvests any AMLR must have a vessel permit authorizing the harvest 
issued under this subpart, unless the attempt or harvest occurs during 
recreational fishing or is covered by an individual permit. Boats 
launched from a vessel issued a vessel permit do not require a separate 
permit, but are covered by the permit issued to the launching vessel. 
Any enforcement action that results from the activities of a launched 
boat will be taken against the owner and operator of the launching 
vessel.
    (2) Any vessel of the United States that receives or attempts to 
receive any harvested AMLR from another vessel at sea, regardless of 
whether such transshipment occurs in the Convention Area or that 
receives, or attempts to receive any other goods or materials from 
another vessel in the Convention Area, must have a vessel permit 
authorizing transshipment issued under this subpart. Transshipment 
vessels must comply with the permitting provisions of this section. This 
requirement does not apply to scientific research vessels or to 
transshipments covered under an individual permit.
    (3) Permits issued under this section do not authorize vessels or 
persons subject to the jurisdiction of the United States to harass, 
capture, harm, kill, harvest, or importo Marine mammals. No marine 
mammals may be taken in the course of commercial fishing operations 
unless the taking is authorized under the Marine Mammal Protection Act 
and/or the Endangered Species Act pursuant to an exemption or permit 
granted by the appropriate agency.
    (b) Responsibility of owners and operators. (1) The owners and 
operators of vessels permitted, or required to be permitted, under this 
subpart are jointly and severally responsible for compliance with the 
Act, this subpart, and any permit issued under the Act and this subpart.
    (2) The owners and operators of each such vessel are responsible for 
the acts of their employees and agents constituting violations, 
regardless of whether the specific acts were authorized or forbidden by 
the owners or operators, and regardless of knowledge concerning their 
occurrence.
    (3) The owner of a vessel issued a vessel permit under this subpart 
must report any sale, change in ownership, or other disposition of the 
vessel to the Assistant Administrator as soon as possible but no later 
than 15 days after the change.
    (4) The owner and operator of a harvesting vessel issued a permit to 
fish for krill in the Convention Area using trawl gear must install a 
seal excluder device and may not possess onboard or deploy trawl gear 
without a seal excluder device installed.
    (c) Application. Application forms for vessel permits are available 
from NMFS Headquarters.
    (1) A separate, fully completed and accurate application is required 
for each vessel for which a permit is requested.
    (2) NMFS must receive applications for vessel permits no later than 
April 1 for the fishing season that will commence on or after December 1 
of that year.

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    (3) Applications for a permit to harvest krill must, to the extent 
possible, identify the products to be derived from the anticipated krill 
catch.
    (4) NMFS will only accept permit applications for vessels that have 
been issued an International Maritime Organization (IMO) number.
    (5) NMFS may charge a fee to recover the administrative expense of 
permit issuance. NMFS will determine the fee in accordance with 
procedures in the NOAA finance handbook, available from NMFS, for 
calculating administrative costs of special products and services and 
user fees.
    (d) Issuance. The Assistant Administrator may issue a vessel permit 
if the Assistant Administrator determines that the harvesting or 
transshipment activities described in the application will meet the 
requirements of the Act and will not:
    (1) Decrease the size of any harvested population to levels below 
those that ensure its stable recruitment. For this purpose, the 
Convention provides that its size should not be allowed to fall below a 
level close to that which ensures the greatest net annual increment.
    (2) Upset the ecological relationships between harvested, dependent, 
and related populations of AMLRs and the restoration of depleted 
populations to levels that will ensure stable recruitment.
    (3) Cause changes or increase the risk of changes in the marine 
ecosystem that are not potentially reversible over 2 or 3 decades, 
taking into account the state of available knowledge of the direct and 
indirect impact of harvesting, the effects of the introduction of alien 
species, the effects of associated activities on the marine ecosystem 
and the effects of environmental changes, with the aim of making 
possible the sustained conservation of AMLRs.
    (4) Violate the Convention or any conservation measures in force 
with respect to the United States under the Convention. The Convention 
and the schedule of conservation measures in force can be found on the 
CCAMLR Web site: www.ccamlr.org.
    (e) Duration. A vessel permit is valid from its date of issuance to 
its date of expiration unless it is revoked or suspended.
    (f) Transfer. Permits are not transferable or assignable. A permit 
is valid only for the vessel to which it is issued.
    (g) Display. Each vessel must have on board, at all times, a valid 
vessel permit and the vessel operator must produce it for inspection 
upon the request of an authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector.
    (h) Changes in information submitted by permit applicants or 
holders--(1) Changes in pending applications. Applicants for a vessel 
permit must report to the Assistant Administrator in writing any change 
in the information contained in the application. The processing period 
for the application will be extended as necessary to review the change.
    (2) Changes occurring after permit issuance--(i) Requested changes 
in the location, manner, or amount of harvesting. Any changes in the 
location, manner or amount of harvesting must be proposed in writing to 
the Assistant Administrator and may not be undertaken unless authorized 
by the Assistant Administrator through a permit revision or issuance of 
a new permit. If the Assistant Administrator determines that the 
requested change in the location, manner, or amount of harvesting could 
significantly affect the status of any Antarctic marine living resource, 
the Assistant Administrator will treat the requested change as an 
application for a new permit and so notify the holder.
    (ii) Changes other than in the location, manner or amount of 
harvesting. For changes other than those addressed in paragraph 
(h)(2)(i) of this section, the owner or operator of a vessel that has 
been issued a vessel permit must report to the Assistant Administrator 
in writing any change in previously submitted information as soon as 
possible but no later than within 15 days after the change. Based on 
such reported information, the Assistant Administrator may revise the 
permit and any revised permit would be effective upon notification to 
the permit holder.
    (i) Conditions and restrictions. The vessel permit will contain 
conditions and restrictions that the Assistant Administrator deems 
necessary for implementation of conservation measures that

[[Page 241]]

apply to the harvesting or transshipment activities. The Assistant 
Administrator may revise the vessel permit to include additional 
conditions and restrictions on the harvesting vessel as necessary to 
implement conservation measures in force with respect to the United 
States or to achieve the purposes of the Convention or the Act. Any 
additional conditions or restrictions will be effective upon 
notification to the permit holder.
    (j) Revision, suspension, or revocation for violations. A vessel 
permit may be revised, suspended, or revoked if the harvesting vessel is 
involved in the commission of any violation of its permit, the Act, or 
this subpart. The Assistant Administrator may deny a vessel permit if 
the applicant or harvesting vessel was previously involved in the 
commission of any violation of its permit, the Act, or this subpart. 
Failure to report a change in the information contained in an 
application within 15 days of the change is a violation of this subpart 
and voids the application or permit, as applicable. If a change in 
vessel ownership is not reported, the violation is chargeable to the 
previous owner.
    (k) Transshipment notification. The vessel operator must notify the 
CCAMLR Secretariat of transshipments of AMLRs, bait, or fuel, and submit 
a confirmation of the notification to NMFS Headquarters, no later than 
72 hours before the transshipment will take place. The vessel operator 
must notify the CCAMLR Secretariat of transfers of all other goods, and 
submit a confirmation of the notification to NMFS Headquarters, no later 
than 2 hours before the transshipment will take place. Notifications of 
intended transshipments shall include the following information, for all 
vessels involved:
    (1) Names, registration numbers, and IMO numbers;
    (2) International radio call signs;
    (3) Flag State;
    (4) Type of vessels, length, gross registered tonnage and carrying 
capacity;
    (5) Proposed time and position, in latitude and longitude, of 
transshipment; and
    (6) Details of the type and amount of catches and/or other goods, 
such as food stores and fuel, involved in the transshipment.
    (l) Reporting and recordkeeping requirements. The operator of any 
vessel required to have a vessel permit under this subpart must:
    (1) Accurately maintain on board the vessel all CCAMLR reports and 
records required by its permit.
    (2) Make such reports and records available for inspection upon the 
request of an authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector.
    (3) Within the time specified in the vessel permit, submit a copy of 
such reports and records to NMFS.
    (4) Install a NMFS-approved EMTU on board U.S. flagged vessels 
harvesting AMLR for use in real-time C-VMS port-to-port reporting to a 
NMFS-designated land-based fisheries monitoring center or centers. The 
requirements for the installation and operation of the VMS are set forth 
in Sec. 300.112.
    (5) Provide advance notice of the vessel's entry into port using the 
CCAMLR Port Inspection Report, including the written declaration that 
the vessel has not engaged in or supported illegal, unreported and 
unregulated (IUU) fishing in the Convention Area and has complied with 
relevant CCAMLR requirements. The CCAMLR Port Inspection Report, and 
instructions for its submission, is available from NMFS Headquarters.



Sec. 300.108  Vessel and gear identification.

    (a) Vessel identification. (1) A vessel issued a permit under this 
subpart must be marked with the vessel's name and its International 
Radio Call Sign (IRCS) amidships on both the port and starboard sides of 
the superstructure or hull, so that it is visible at all times from an 
enforcement or inspection vessel. Fixtures inclined at an angle to the 
vessel's side or superstructure would be considered as suitable provided 
that the angle of inclination would not prevent sighting of the IRCS 
from another vessel or from the air. The vessel's IRCS shall also be 
marked on the deck. Should an awning or other temporary cover be placed 
so as to obscure the mark on the deck, the awning or cover shall also be 
marked with the IRCS.

[[Page 242]]

The marks should be placed athwartship with the top of the numbers or 
letters towards the bow.
    (2) Boats, skiffs and craft carried by the vessel for fishing 
operations shall bear the same mark as the vessel, except that a 
numerical suffix specific for the boat, skiff, or craft must follow the 
IRCS.
    (3) The vessel identification must be in a color in contrast to the 
background and must be permanently affixed to the vessel in block Roman 
alphabet letters and Arabic numerals using good quality marine paints. 
The letters and numbers shall be: At least 1 meter in height (h) for the 
IRCS placed on the hull, superstructure and/or inclined surfaces and at 
least 0.3 meter for marks placed on deck. The length of the hyphen shall 
be half the height of the letters and numbers. The width of the stroke 
for all letters, numbers and the hyphen shall be h/6. The space between 
letters and/or numbers shall not exceed h/4 nor be less than h/6. The 
space between adjacent letters having sloping sides (e.g., A and V) 
shall not exceed h/8 nor be less than h/10. If a contrasting color is 
used for the background of the marks, it shall extend to provide a 
border around the mark of at least h/6.
    (4) The marks and the background shall be maintained in good 
condition at all times.
    (b) Navigational lights and shapes. Each vessel issued a vessel 
permit must display the lights and shapes prescribed by the 
International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea, 1972 (TIAS 
8587, and 1981 amendment TIAS 10672), for the activity in which the 
harvesting vessel is engaged (as described at 33 CFR part 81).
    (c) Gear identification. (1) The operator of each fishing vessel 
must ensure that all deployed fishing gear is clearly marked at all 
times at the surface with a buoy displaying the vessel identification of 
the harvesting vessel (see paragraph (a) of this section) to which the 
gear belongs, a light visible for 2 miles at night in good visibility, 
and a radio buoy.
    (2) The operator of each harvesting vessel must ensure that deployed 
longlines and strings of traps or pots, and gillnets are clearly marked 
at all times at the surface at each terminal end with a buoy displaying 
the vessel identification of the harvesting vessel to which the gear 
belongs (see paragraph (a) of this section), a light visible for 2 miles 
at night in good visibility, and a radio buoy.
    (3) Unmarked or incorrectly identified fishing gear may be 
considered abandoned and may be disposed of in accordance with 
applicable CCAMLR Conservation Measures in force with respect to the 
United States by any authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector.
    (d) Maintenance. The operator of each vessel issued a vessel permit 
must:
    (1) Keep the vessel and gear identification clearly legible and in 
good condition at all times;
    (2) Ensure that nothing on the vessel obstructs the view of the 
markings from an enforcement or inspection vessel or aircraft; and
    (3) Ensure that the proper navigational lights and shapes are 
displayed for the vessel's activity and are properly functioning.



Sec. 300.109  Initiating a new fishery.

    (a) A new fishery, for purposes of this section, is a fishery that 
uses bottom trawls on the high seas of the Convention Area or a fishery 
for a species, using a particular method, in a statistical subarea or 
division for which:
    (1) Information on distribution, abundance, demography, potential 
yield and stock identity from comprehensive research/surveys or 
exploratory fishing has not been submitted to CCAMLR;
    (2) Catch and effort data have never been submitted to CCAMLR; or
    (3) Catch and effort data from the two most recent seasons in which 
fishing occurred have not been submitted to CCAMLR.
    (b) Persons intending to develop a new fishery shall notify the 
Assistant Administrator no later than April 1 for the fishing season 
that will commence on or after December 1 and shall not initiate the 
fishery pending NMFS and CCAMLR review or until a vessel permit has been 
used under this subpart.
    (c) The notification shall be accompanied by a complete vessel 
permit application required under Sec. 300.107 and information on:

[[Page 243]]

    (1) The nature of the proposed fishery, including target species, 
methods of fishing, proposed region and maximum catch levels proposed 
for the forthcoming season;
    (2) Biological information on the target species from comprehensive 
research/survey cruises, such as distribution, abundance, demographic 
data and information on stock identity;
    (3) Details of dependent and related species and the likelihood of 
them being affected by the proposed fishery;
    (4) Information from other fisheries in the region or similar 
fisheries elsewhere that may assist in the evaluation of potential 
yield; and
    (5) If the proposed fishery will be undertaken using bottom trawl 
gear, the known and anticipated impacts of this gear on vulnerable 
marine ecosystems, including benthos and benthic communities.



Sec. 300.110  Exploratory fisheries.

    (a) An exploratory fishery, for purposes of this section, is a 
fishery that was previously defined as a new fishery under Sec. 300.109.
    (b) A fishery continues to be classified by CCAMLR as an exploratory 
fishery until sufficient information is available to:
    (1) Evaluate the distribution, abundance, and demography of the 
target species, leading to an estimate of the fishery's potential yield;
    (2) Review the fishery's potential impacts on dependent and related 
species; and
    (3) Allow the CCAMLR Scientific Committee to formulate and provide 
advice to the Commission on appropriate harvest catch levels and fishing 
gear.
    (c) The operator of any vessel engaging in an exploratory fishery 
must submit, by the date specified in the vessel permit issued under 
Sec. 300.107, catch, effort, and related biological, ecological, and 
environmental data as required by a data collection plan for the fishery 
formulated by the CCAMLR Scientific Committee.
    (d) In addition to the requirements in Sec. 300.107, any person 
planning to enter an exploratory fishery must notify the Assistant 
Administrator no later than April 1 for the fishing season that will 
commence on or after December 1 and shall not enter the fishery pending 
NMFS and CCAMLR review or until a vessel permit has been used under this 
subpart. The Assistant Administrator will not issue a permit to enter an 
exploratory fishery until after the requirements of Sec. 300.107 have 
been met and CCAMLR has considered the notification.
    (e) The notification shall be accompanied by a complete vessel 
permit application required under Sec. 300.107 and information on:
    (1) The nature of the exploratory fishery, including target species, 
methods of fishing, proposed region and maximum catch levels proposed 
for the forthcoming season;
    (2) Specification and full description of the types of fishing gear 
to be used;
    (3) Biological information on the target species from comprehensive 
research/survey cruises, such as distribution, abundance, demographic 
data and information on stock identity; details of dependent and related 
species and the likelihood of their being affected by the proposed 
fishery;
    (4) Information from other fisheries in the region or similar 
fisheries elsewhere that may assist in the evaluation of potential 
yield;
    (5) If the proposed fishery will be undertaken using bottom trawl 
gear, information on the known and anticipated impacts of this gear on 
vulnerable marine ecosystems, including benthos and benthic communities; 
and
    (6) Any other information the Assistant Administrator requires to 
fully implement the relevant conservation measures.



Sec. 300.111  Scientific observers.

    (a) Except as otherwise specified, this section applies to both 
national observers and international observers, as well as to vessels of 
the United States carrying, or required to carry, such observers.
    (b) All vessels of the United States fishing in the Convention Area 
must carry one or more scientific observers as required by CCAMLR 
conservation measures or as specified in a vessel permit issued under 
this subpart.
    (c) All vessels of the United States conducting longline sink rate 
testing

[[Page 244]]

outside the Convention Area and pursuant to CCAMLR protocols must carry 
one or more scientific observers as specified in the vessel permit 
issued under this subpart.
    (d) Procurement of observers by vessel. Owners of vessels required 
to carry scientific observers under this section must arrange for 
observer services in coordination with the NMFS Southwest Fisheries 
Science Center Antarctic Ecosystem Research Division. The vessel owner 
is required to pay for observer services through an observer service 
provider who has provided observer services to the Federal government 
within the past year. In situations where no qualified observer is 
available through a qualified observer provider, the Secretary may 
authorize a vessel owner to arrange for an observer by alternative 
methods. An observer may not be paid directly by the vessel owner.
    (e) Vessel responsibilities. An operator of a vessel required to 
carry one or more scientific observers must:
    (1) Accommodations and food. Provide, at no cost to the observers or 
the United States, accommodations and food on the vessel for the 
observer or observers that are equivalent to those provided for officers 
of the vessel; and
    (2) Safe conditions. Maintain safe conditions on the vessel for the 
protection of observers including adherence to all U.S. Coast Guard and 
other applicable rules, regulations, or statutes pertaining to safe 
operation of the vessel and have on board:
    (i) A valid Commercial Fishing Vessel Safety Decal issued within the 
past 2 years that certifies compliance with regulations found in 33 CFR 
chapter I and 46 CFR chapter I;
    (ii) A certificate of compliance issued pursuant to 46 CFR 28.710; 
or
    (iii) A valid certificate of inspection pursuant to 46 U.S.C. 3311.
    (3) Health and safety regulations. Comply with the observer health 
and safety regulations at part 600 of this title.
    (4) Transmission of data. Facilitate transmission of observer data 
by allowing observers, on request, to use the vessel's communications 
equipment and personnel for the confidential entry, transmission, and 
receipt of work-related messages.
    (5) Vessel position. Allow observers access to, and the use of, the 
vessel's navigation equipment and personnel, on request, to determine 
the vessel's position, course and speed.
    (6) Access. Allow observers free and unobstructed access to the 
vessel's bridge, trawl or working decks, holding bins, processing areas, 
freezer spaces, weight scales, cargo holds, and any other space that may 
be used to hold, process, weigh, or store fish or fish products at any 
time.
    (7) Prior notification. Notify observers at least 15 minutes before 
fish are brought on board, or fish and fish products are transferred 
from the vessel, to allow sampling the catch or observing the transfer, 
unless the observers specifically request not to be notified.
    (8) Records. Allow observers to inspect and copy the vessel's DCD, 
product transfer forms, any other logbook or document required by 
regulations or CCAMLR conservation measures, printouts or tallies of 
scale weights, scale calibration records, bin sensor readouts, and 
production records.
    (9) Assistance. Provide all other reasonable assistance to enable 
observers to carry out their duties, including, but not limited to:
    (i) Measuring decks, codends, and holding bins;
    (ii) Providing the observers with a safe work area adjacent to the 
sample collection site;
    (iii) Collecting bycatch when requested by the observers;
    (iv) Collecting and carrying baskets of fish when requested by 
observers; and
    (v) Allowing observers to determine the sex of fish when this 
procedure will not decrease the value of a significant portion of the 
catch.
    (10) Transfer at sea. (i) Ensure that transfers of observers at sea 
via small boat or raft are carried out during daylight hours, under safe 
conditions, and with the agreement of observers involved.
    (ii) Notify observers at least 3 hours before observers are 
transferred, such that the observers can collect personal belongings, 
equipment, and scientific samples.

[[Page 245]]

    (iii) Provide a safe pilot ladder and conduct the transfer to ensure 
the safety of observers during transfers.
    (iv) Provide an experienced crew member to assist observers in the 
small boat or raft in which any transfer is made.
    (f) Insurance. The observer service provider or vessel owner must 
provide insurance for national observers that provides compensation in 
the event of an injury or death during the entire deployment, from the 
point of hire location to return, equivalent to the standards of the 
North Pacific Groundfish Observer Program set forth in Sec. 679.50 of 
this title.
    (g) Educational requirements. National observer candidates must:
    (1) Have a Bachelor's degree or higher from an accredited college or 
university with a major in one of the natural sciences; or
    (2) Have successfully completed a minimum of 30 semester hours or 
equivalent in applicable biological sciences with extensive use of 
dichotomous keys in at least one course.
    (h) Health requirements. National observers, and U.S. observers 
deployed as international observers, must have a signed and dated 
statement from a licensed physician that he or she has physically 
examined the observer. The statement must confirm that, based upon the 
physical examination, the observer does not have any health problems or 
conditions that would jeopardize that individual's safety or the safety 
of others while deployed, or prevent the observer from performing his or 
her duties satisfactorily. The statement must declare that, prior to the 
examination, the physician was made aware of the duties of an observer 
and the dangerous, remote and rigorous nature of the work. The 
physician's statement must be submitted to the NMFS Southwest Fisheries 
Science Center Antarctic Ecosystem Research Division program office 
prior to approval of an observer. The physical exam must have occurred 
during the 12 months prior to the observer's deployment. The physician's 
statement will expire 12 months after the physical exam occurred. A new 
physical exam must be performed, and accompanying statement submitted, 
prior to any deployment occurring after the expiration of the statement.
    (i) Standards of observer conduct. (1) Observers:
    (i) Must not have a direct financial interest in the fishery being 
observed, including but not limited to:
    (A) Any ownership, mortgage holder, or other secured interest in a 
vessel, shoreside or floating stationary processor facility involved in 
the catching, taking, harvesting or processing of fish;
    (B) Any business involved with selling supplies or services to any 
vessel, shoreside or floating stationary processing facility; or
    (C) Any business involved with purchasing raw or processed products 
from any vessel, shoreside or floating stationary processing facilities.
    (ii) Must not solicit or accept, directly or indirectly, any 
gratuity, gift, favor, entertainment, loan, or anything of monetary 
value from anyone who either conducts activities that are regulated by 
NMFS or has interests that may be substantially affected by the 
performance or nonperformance of the observers' official duties.
    (iii) Must not serve as observers on any vessel or at any shoreside 
or floating stationary processing facility owned or operated by a person 
who previously employed the observers.
    (iv) Must not solicit or accept employment as a crew member or an 
employee of a vessel, shoreside processor, or stationary floating 
processor while employed by an observer provider.
    (2) Provisions for remuneration of observers under this section do 
not constitute a conflict of interest.
    (j) Standards of observer behavior. Observers must:
    (1) Avoid any behavior that could adversely affect the confidence of 
the public in the integrity of the CCAMLR Scheme of International 
Scientific Observation or of the government, including but not limited 
to the following:
    (2) Perform their assigned duties as described in the CCAMLR 
Scientific Observers Manual and must complete the CCAMLR Scientific 
Observer Logbooks and submit them to the CCAMLR Data Manager at the 
intervals specified by the Data Manager.

[[Page 246]]

    (3) Accurately record their sampling data, write complete reports, 
and report accurately any observations of suspected violations of 
regulations relevant to conservation of marine resources or their 
environment.
    (4) Not disclose collected data and observations made on board the 
vessel or in the processing facility to any person, except the owner or 
operator of the observed vessel or processing facility or NMFS.
    (5) Refrain from engaging in any illegal actions or any other 
activities that would reflect negatively on their image as professional 
scientists, on other observers, or on the CCAMLR Scheme of International 
Scientific Observation as a whole. This includes, but is not limited to:
    (i) Refrain from engaging in the use, possession, or distribution of 
illegal drugs; or
    (ii) Refrain from engaging in physical sexual contact with personnel 
of the vessel or processing facility to which the observer is assigned, 
or with any vessel or processing plant personnel who may be 
substantially affected by the performance or non-performance of the 
observer's official duties.
    (k) Sampling station--(1) Minimum work space aboard at sea 
processing vessels. The observer must have a working area of 4.5 square 
meters, including the observer's sampling table, for sampling and 
storage of fish to be sampled. The observer must be able to stand 
upright and have a work area at least 0.9 meter (m) deep in the area in 
front of the table and scale.
    (2) Table aboard at-sea processing vessels. The observer sampling 
station must include a table at least 0.6 m deep, 1.2 m wide and 0.9 m 
high and no more than 1.1 m high. The entire surface area of the table 
must be available for use by the observer. Any area for the observer 
sampling scale is in addition to the minimum space requirements for the 
table. The observer's sampling table must be secured to the floor or 
wall.
    (3) Other requirement for at-sea processing vessels. The sampling 
station must be in a well-drained area that includes floor grating (or 
other material that prevents slipping), lighting adequate for day or 
night sampling, and a hose that supplies fresh or sea water to the 
observer.



Sec. 300.112  Vessel monitoring system.

    (a) Requirement for use. Within 30 days after NMFS publishes in the 
Federal Register a list of approved EMTUs and associated communications 
service providers for the AMLR fishery, an owner or operator of a vessel 
that has been issued a vessel permit under Sec. 300.107 must ensure that 
such vessel has a NMFS-type-approved, operating EMTU installed and 
continuously operating for the duration of any fishing trip involving 
the harvesting of AMLR.
    (b) Installing and activating the EMTU. Only EMTUs that have been 
approved by NMFS for use in the AMLR fishery may be used. The vessel 
owner or operator shall obtain and have installed on the fishing vessel, 
by a qualified marine electrician and in accordance with any 
instructions provided by the VMS Helpdesk or OLE, a NMFS type-approved 
EMTU.
    (c) Interference with the EMTU. No person may interfere with, tamper 
with, alter, damage, disable, or impede the operation of the EMTU, or 
attempt any of the same.
    (d) Interruption of operation of the VMS. When a vessel's EMTU is 
not operating properly, the owner or operator must immediately contact 
OLE, and follow instructions from that office. If notified by NMFS that 
a vessel's EMTU is not operating properly, the owner and operator must 
follow instructions from that office. In either event, such instructions 
may include, but are not limited to, manually communicating to a 
location designated by NMFS the vessel's positions or returning to port 
until the EMTU is operable.
    (e) Access to data. OLE is authorized to receive and relay 
transmissions from the EMTU. OLE will share a vessel's position data 
obtained from the EMTU, if requested, with other NMFS offices, the USCG, 
and their authorized officers and designees.
    (f) Installation and operation of the VMS. NMFS has authority over 
the installation and operation of the EMTU. NMFS may authorize the 
connection or order the disconnection of additional equipment, including 
a computer, to

[[Page 247]]

any EMTU when deemed appropriate by NMFS.



Sec. 300.113  CCAMLR Ecosystem Monitoring Program sites.

    (a) General. (1) Any person subject to the jurisdiction of the 
United States must apply for and be granted an entry permit authorizing 
specific activities prior to entering a CCAMLR Ecosystem Monitoring 
Program (CEMP) site designated in accordance with the CCAMLR 
conservation measure describing the procedure for according protection 
for CEMP sites.
    (2) If a CEMP site is also a site specially protected under the 
Antarctic Treaty (or the Protocol on Environmental Protection to the 
Antarctic Treaty and its Annexes, such as the sites listed in 45 CFR 
670.29), an applicant seeking to enter such site must apply to the 
Director of the NSF for a permit under applicable provisions of the ACA 
or any superseding legislation. The permit granted by NSF shall 
constitute a joint CEMP/ACA Protected Site permit and any person holding 
such a permit must comply with the appropriate CEMP site management 
plan. In all other cases, an applicant seeking a permit to enter a CEMP 
site must apply to the Assistant Administrator for a CEMP permit in 
accordance with the provisions of this section.
    (b) Responsibility of CEMP permit holders and persons designated as 
agents under a CEMP permit. (1) The CEMP permit holder and person 
designated as agents under a CEMP permit are jointly and severally 
responsible for compliance with the Act, this subpart, and any permit 
issued under this subpart.
    (2) The CEMP permit holder and agents designated under a CEMP permit 
are responsible for the acts of their employees and agents constituting 
violations, regardless of whether the specific acts were authorized or 
forbidden by the CEMP permit holder or agents, and regardless of 
knowledge concerning their occurrence.
    (c) Prohibitions regarding the Antarctic Treaty System and other 
applicable treaties and statutes. Holders of permits to enter CEMP 
Protected Sites are not authorized to undertake any activities within a 
CEMP Protected Site that are not in compliance with the conditions of 
the CEMP permit and the provisions of:
    (1) The Antarctic Treaty, including the Agreed Measures for the 
Conservation of Antarctic Fauna and Flora (including the Protocol on the 
Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty and its Annexes), as 
implemented by the ACA and any superseding legislation. (Persons 
interested in conducting activities subject to the Antarctic Treaty or 
the Protocol should contact the Office of Polar Programs, NSF).
    (2) The Convention for the Conservation of Antarctic Seals.
    (3) The Convention and its Conservation Measures in force, 
implemented under the Act.
    (d) Prohibitions on takings. Permits issued under this section do 
not authorize any takings as defined in the applicable statutes and 
implementing regulations governing the activities of persons in 
Antarctica.
    (e) Issuance criteria. Permits designated in this section may be 
issued by the Assistant Administrator upon a determination that:
    (1) The specific activities meet the requirements of the Act;
    (2) There is sufficient reason, established in the CEMP permit 
application, that the scientific purpose for the intended entry cannot 
be served elsewhere; and
    (3) The actions permitted will not violate any provisions or 
prohibitions of the site's management plan submitted in compliance with 
the CCAMLR Conservation Measure describing the procedure for according 
protection to CEMP sites.
    (f) Application process. An applicant seeking a CEMP permit from the 
Assistant Administrator to enter a CEMP site shall include the following 
in the application.
    (1) A detailed justification that the scientific objectives of the 
applicant cannot be accomplished elsewhere and a description of how said 
objectives will be accomplished within the terms of the site's 
management plan.
    (2) A statement signed by the applicant that the applicant has read 
and fully understands the provisions and prohibitions of the site's 
management

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plan. Prospective applicants may obtain copies of the relevant 
management plans and the CCAMLR Conservation Measure describing the 
procedure for according protection to CEMP sites by requesting them from 
NMFS Headquarters.
    (g) Conditions. CEMP permits issued under this section will contain 
special and general conditions including a condition that the permit 
holder shall submit a report describing the activities conducted under 
the permit within 30 days of the expiration of the CEMP permit.
    (h) Transfer. CEMP permits are not transferable or assignable. A 
CEMP permit is valid only for the person to whom it is issued.
    (i) Additional conditions and restrictions. The Assistant 
Administrator may revise the CEMP permit effective upon notification of 
the permit holder, to impose additional conditions and restrictions as 
necessary to achieve the purposes of the Convention, the Act and the 
CEMP Management Plan. The CEMP permit holder must, as soon as possible, 
notify any and all agents operating under the permit of any and all 
revisions or modifications to the permit.
    (j) Revocation or suspension. CEMP permits may be revoked or 
suspended based upon information received by the Assistant Administrator 
and such revocation or suspension shall be effective upon notification 
to the permit holder.
    (1) A CEMP permit may be revoked or suspended based on a violation 
of the permit, the Act, or this subpart.
    (2) Failure to report a change in the information submitted in a 
CEMP permit application within 10 days of the change is a violation of 
this subpart and voids the application or permit, as applicable. Title 
15 CFR part 904 governs permit sanctions under this subpart.
    (k) Exceptions. Entry into a CEMP site is lawful if committed under 
emergency conditions to prevent the loss of human life, avoid 
compromising human safety, prevent the loss of vessels or aircraft, or 
to prevent environmental damage.
    (l) Protected sites. Sites protected by the Antarctic Treaty and 
regulated under the ACA are listed at 45 CFR part 670 subpart F.



Sec. 300.114  Prohibitions.

    In addition to the prohibitions in Sec. 300.4, it is unlawful for 
any person to:
    (a) Harvest any AMLR without a permit for such activity as required 
by Sec. 300.107.
    (b) Import into, or export or re-export from, the United States any 
AMLR: Taken by a vessel of the United States without a permit issued 
under this subpart or by a foreign-flagged vessel without valid 
authorization from the applicable flag state to harvest those resources; 
without accurate, complete, valid and properly validated CDS 
documentation as required by Sec. 300.106; without an IFTP as required 
by Sec. 300.104; or in violation of the terms and conditions for such 
import, export or re-export as specified on the IFTP.
    (c) Engage in or benefit from harvesting or other associated 
activities in violation of the provisions of the Convention or in 
violation of a conservation measure in force with respect to the United 
States under Article IX of the Convention.
    (d) Ship, transport, offer for sale, sell, purchase, import, export, 
re-export or have custody, control or possession of, any AMLR that was 
harvested in violation of a conservation measure in force with respect 
to the United States under Article IX of the Convention or in violation 
of any regulation promulgated under the Act, without regard to the 
citizenship of the person that harvested, or vessel that was used in the 
harvesting of, the AMLR.
    (e) Refuse to allow any CCAMLR inspector or authorized officer to 
board a vessel of the United States or a vessel subject to the 
jurisdiction of the United States for the purpose of conducting any 
search, investigation, or inspection authorized by the Act, this 
subpart, or any permit issued under the Act.
    (f) Refuse to provide appropriate assistance, including access as 
necessary to communications equipment, to any CCAMLR inspector or 
authorized officer.
    (g) Refuse to sign a written notification of alleged violations of 
CCAMLR

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conservation measures in force prepared by a CCAMLR inspector.
    (h) Assault, resist, oppose, impede, intimidate, or interfere with a 
CCAMLR inspector or authorized officer in the conduct of any boarding, 
search, investigation, or inspection authorized by the Act, this 
subpart, or any permit issued under the Act.
    (i) Use any vessel to engage in harvesting, or receive, import, 
export or re-export, AMLRs after the revocation, or during the period of 
suspension, of an applicable permit issued under the Act.
    (j) Fail to identify, falsely identify, fail to properly maintain, 
or obscure the identification of a harvesting vessel or its gear as 
required by this subpart.
    (k) Fish in an area where fishing is prohibited by the Commission, 
other than for scientific research purposes in accordance with 
Sec. 300.103.
    (l) Violate or attempt to violate any provision of this subpart, the 
Act, any other regulation promulgated under the Act or the conditions of 
any permit issued under the Act.
    (m) Provide incomplete or inaccurate information about the harvest, 
transshipment, landing, import, export, or re-export of applicable 
species on any document required under this subpart.
    (n) Receive AMLR from a vessel, without holding an AMLR first 
receiver permit as required under Sec. 300.104, or receive AMLR from a 
fishing vessel that does not hold a valid vessel permit issued under 
Sec. 300.107.
    (o) Import, export or re-export Dissostichus spp. harvested or 
transshipped by a vessel identified by CCAMLR as having engaged in 
illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing, originating from a 
high seas area designated by the Food and Agriculture Organization of 
the United Nations as Statistical Area 51 or Statistical Area 57 or 
accompanied by inaccurate, incomplete, invalid, or improperly validated 
CDS documentation or import or re-export Dissostichus spp. accompanied 
by a SVDCD.
    (p) Import shipments of frozen Dissostichus spp. without a 
preapproval issued under Sec. 300.105.
    (q) Observers. (1) Assault, resist, oppose, impede, intimidate, 
harass, bribe, or interfere with an observer.
    (2) Interfere with or bias the sampling procedure employed by an 
observer, including physical, mechanical, or other sorting or discarding 
of catch before sampling.
    (3) Tamper with, destroy, or discard an observer's collected 
samples, equipment, records, photographic film, papers, or personal 
effects without the express consent of the observer.
    (4) Prohibit or bar by command, impediment, threat, coercion, or by 
refusal of reasonable assistance, an observer from collecting samples, 
conducting product recovery rate determinations, making observations, or 
otherwise performing the observer's duties.
    (5) Harass an observer by conduct that has sexual connotations, has 
the purpose or effect of interfering with the observer's work 
performance, or otherwise creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive 
environment.
    (6) Fish for or process fish without observer coverage required 
under Sec. 300.111.
    (7) Require, pressure, coerce, or threaten an observer to perform 
duties normally performed by crew members, including, but not limited 
to, cooking, washing dishes, standing watch, vessel maintenance, 
assisting with the setting or retrieval of gear, or any duties 
associated with the processing of fish, from sorting the catch to the 
storage of the finished product.
    (8) Refuse to provide appropriate assistance, including access as 
necessary to communications equipment, to an observer.
    (r) Vessel monitoring systems. (1) Use any vessel of the United 
States issued, or required to be issued, an AMLR vessel permit to 
conduct fishing operations unless that vessel carries a NMFS-type-
approved EMTU and complies with the requirements described in this 
subpart.
    (2) Fail to install, activate, repair or replace an EMTU prior to 
leaving port as specified in this subpart.
    (3) Fail to operate and maintain an EMTU on board the vessel at all 
times as specified in this subpart.

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    (4) Tamper with, damage, destroy, alter, or in any way distort, 
render useless, inoperative, ineffective, or inaccurate the EMTU 
requir