Unmanaged Forage Amendment - Public Hearing #1

  • NCDENR Washington Regional Office Hearing Room 943 Washington Street Washington, NC 27889

The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council will hold seven public hearings in May and June 2016 to solicit public input on the Unmanaged Forage Omnibus Amendment. The Council is also soliciting written comments on the amendment through 11:59 pm on Friday June 17, 2016. The goal of this amendment is to prohibit the development of new and expansion of existing directed commercial fisheries on unmanaged forage species in Mid-Atlantic Federal waters until the Council has had an adequate opportunity to both assess the scientific information relating to any new or expanded directed fisheries and consider potential impacts to existing fisheries, fishing communities, and the marine ecosystem.

Hearing Schedule

The public hearings will be held between May 17, 2016 and June 8, 2016. The dates and times of each hearing are listed below.

  1. Tuesday May 17, 2016. 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm. — North Carolina Department of Marine Fisheries Washington Regional Office Hearing Room. 943 Washington Street, Washington, NC, 27889. Telephone: 252-946-6481.
  2. Wednesday May 18, 2016. 6:30 – 8:00 pm. — Hilton Virginia Beach Oceanfront. 3001 Atlantic Avenue, Virginia Beach, VA, 23451. Telephone: 757-213-3000.
  3. Thursday May 19, 2016. 6:30-8:00 pm. — Stockton Seaview Hotel and Golf Club. 401 South New York Road, Galloway, NJ 08205. Telephone: 855-894-8698.
  4. Monday May 23, 2016. 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm. — University of Rhode Island Bay Campus Corless Auditorium. 215 South Ferry Road, Narragansett, RI, 02882. Telephone: 401-874-6222.
  5. Tuesday May 24, 2016. 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm. — New York Department of Environmental Conservation Bureau of Marine Resources Hearing Room. 205 North Belle Mead Ave, Suite 1, East Setauket, NY, 11733. Telephone: 631-444-0430.
  6. Monday June 6, 2016. 6:30 – 8:00 pm. — Hilton Suites Oceanfront. 3200 North Baltimore Avenue, Ocean City, Maryland, 21842. Telephone: 410-289-6444.
  7. Wednesday June 8, 2016. 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm. — Webinar. Click here for connection details.

Written Comments

Written comments may be sent through mail, email, or fax through 11:59 pm on Friday June 17, 2016.

  • Mail to Dr. Chris Moore, Executive Director, Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council, 800 North State Street, Suite 201, Dover, DE, 19901 (please write “unmanaged forage public hearing comments” on the outside of the envelope.)
  • Fax to: Dr. Chris Moore, Executive Director, Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council at 302-674-5399 (please write “unmanaged forage public hearing comments” in the subject line.)
  • Email to Julia Beaty, Fishery Management Specialist, at jbeaty@mafmc.org  (please include “unmanaged forage public hearing comments” in the subject line.)
  • Online at http://www.mafmc.org/comments/unmanaged-forage-amendment-comments

Background

The goal of the Unmanaged Forage Omnibus Amendment is to prohibit the development of new and expansion of existing directed commercial fisheries on unmanaged forage species in Mid-Atlantic Federal waters until the Council has had an adequate opportunity to both assess the scientific information relating to any new or expanded directed fisheries and consider potential impacts to existing fisheries, fishing communities, and the marine ecosystem. This action is needed to protect the structure and function of marine ecosystems in the Mid-Atlantic and to advance an ecosystem approach to fisheries management in the Mid-Atlantic. In this context, “unmanaged” refers to species not currently managed by the Mid-Atlantic, New England, or South Atlantic Fishery Management Councils, or the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission. The Council has proposed a range of management alternatives to meet the goal of the amendment. The Council is seeking public comment on these alternatives.

More information on the amendment and the management alternatives can be found in the Public Hearing Document.

Special Accommodations

These meetings are physically accessible to people with disabilities.  Requests for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aid should be directed to M. Jan Saunders, 302-526-5251, at least 5 days prior to the meeting date.