Summer Flounder, Scup, Black Sea Bass

1988: Original FMP established management plan for summer flounder.

1991: Amendment 1 established an overfishing definition for summer flounder.

1993: Amendment 2 established rebuilding schedule, commercial quotas, recreational harvest limits, size limits, gear restrictions, permits, and reporting requirements for summer flounder. This amendment also created the Summer Flounder Monitoring Committee.

1993: Amendment 3 revised the exempted fishery line for summer flounder, increased the large mesh net threshold for summer flounder, and established otter trawl retention requirements for large mesh use in the summer flounder fishery.

1993: Amendment 4 revised state-specific shares for summer flounder commercial quota allocation.

1993: Amendment 5 allowed states to combine or transfer summer flounder commercial quota.

1994: Amendment 6 set criteria for allowance of multiple nets on board commercial vessels for summer flounder, established a deadline for publishing catch limits, and established commercial management measures for summer flounder.

1995: Amendment 7 revised the fishing mortality rate reduction schedule for summer flounder.

1996: Amendment 8 incorporated Scup FMP into Summer Flounder FMP and established scup management measures, including commercial quotas, recreational harvest limits, size limits, gear restrictions, permits, and reporting requirements.

1996: 1996 Regulatory Amendment established seasonal quota periods for the commercial scup fishery.

1996: Amendment 9 incorporated Black Sea Bass into the Summer Flounder FMP and established black sea bass measures, including commercial quotas, recreational harvest limits, size limits, gear restrictions, permits, and reporting requirements.

1997: Amendment 10 modified commercial minimum mesh requirements, continued commercial vessel moratorium, prohibited transfer of summer flounder at sea, and established special permit for party/charter sector for summer flounder.

1998: Amendment 11 modified certain provisions related to vessel replacement and upgrading, permit history transfer, splitting, and permit renewal regulations.

1999: Amendment 12 revised the FMP to comply with the SFA and established framework adjustment process.

2001: Framework 1 established quota set-aside for research for summer flounder, scup, and black sea bass.

2001: Framework 2 established state-specific conservation equivalency measures.

2003: Framework 3 allowed the rollover of winter scup quota and revised the start date for summer quota period for scup fishery.

2003: Framework 4 established a system to transfer scup at sea.

2003: Amendment 13 addressed the disapproved sections of Amendment 12, revised black sea bass commercial quota system, and addressed other black sea bass mgmt. measures. (Amendment 13 Appendices)

2004: Framework 5 established multi-year specification setting of quota for all three species.

2006: Framework 6 established region-specific conservation equivalency measures for summer flounder.

2007: Framework 7  built flexibility into process to define and update status determination criteria for each plan species.

2007: Amendment 16 implemented standardized bycatch reporting methodology. Final Rule - 1/28/2008.

2007: Amendment 14 established a rebuilding schedule for scup and made scup GRAs modifiable through framework adjustment process.

2011: Amendment 15 is an omnibus amendment that implemented Acceptable Biological Catches (ABCs) and Annual Catch Limits (ACLs) to avoid overfishing and ensure accountability.

2013: Amendment 19 - Omnibus Recreational Accountability Amendment modified the accountability measures for the Council's recreational fisheries

2015: Amendment 17 is an omnibus amendment that implemented a new Standardized Bycatch Reporting Methodology to address a legal challenge. Final Rule.

2015: Framework 8 - Black Sea Bass May Opening Framework allowed the black sea bass recreational fishery to begin on May 15 of each year, instead of May 19, to provide additional fishing opportunities. Final Rule.

2015: Amendment 18 - Omnibus Amendment to Simplify Vessel Baselines eliminated the requirement for vessel owners to submit "did not fish" reports for the months or weeks when their vessel was not fishing and removed some of the restrictions for upgrading vessels listed on Federal fishing permits. Final Rule.

2016: Framework 9 - Scup GRA Framework (2016) modified the southern and eastern boundaries of the Southern Scup Gear Restricted Area (in effect January 1-March 15).

2017: Amendment 20 - Unmanaged Forage Omnibus Amendment implemented management measures to prevent the development of new, and the expansion of existing, commercial fisheries on certain forage species in the Mid-Atlantic. Final Rule.

2017: Framework 10 - Omnibus For-Hire Electronic Trip Report Framework implemented a requirement for vessels that hold party/charter permits for Council-managed species to submit vessel trip reports electronically (eVTRs) while on a trip carrying passengers for hire. Final Rule.

2018: Framework 11 - Omnibus Acceptable Biological Catch Framework established a process for setting constant multi-year Acceptable Biological Catch (ABC) limits for Council-managed fisheries. This action clarifies that the Atlantic Bluefish, Tilefish, and Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, and Butterfish FMPs will now automatically incorporate the best available scientific information in calculating ABCs (as all other Mid-Atlantic management plans do) rather than requiring a separate management action to adopt them. This action also clarifies the process for setting ABCs for each of the four types of ABC control rules. Final Rule.

2018: Framework 12 - Scup Quota Period Framework modified the dates of the commercial scup quota periods, moving the month of October from the Summer Period to the Winter II Period. Final Rule.

2018: Framework 13 - Commercial Accountability Measures Framework modified the accountability measures required for overages not caused by directed landings (i.e., discards) in the summer flounder, scup, and black sea bass fisheries. Final Rule.

Spiny Dogfish

2000: The Original Spiny Dogfish Fishery Management Plan established management of Atlantic spiny dogfish fisheries and initiated stock rebuilding. Final Rule - 1/11/2000.

2006Framework 1 created a mechanism for specification of multi-year management measures. Final Rule - 1/19/2006.

2007Amendment 1 was an omnibus amendment that implemented a Standardized Bycatch Reporting Methodology (SBRM). Final Rule - 1/28/2008.

2009Framework 2 built flexibility into process to define and update status determination criteria. Final Rule - 6/24/2009.

2011Amendment 2 was an omnibus amendment that implemented Acceptable Biological Catches (ABCs) and Annual Catch Limits (ACLs) to avoid overfishing and ensure accountability. Final Rule - 9/29/2011.

2014Amendment 3 added the spiny dogfish fishery to the Research Set‐Aside (RSA) program, updated Essential Fish Habitat definitions, established provisions to maintain existing management measures (including quota) in the event of delayed rulemaking, and eliminated seasonal allocation of the coast wide commercial quota. Final Rule - 7/15/2014.

2015Amendment 4 was an omnibus amendment that implemented a new Standardized Bycatch Reporting Methodology to address a legal challenge. Final Rule - 6/30/2015.

2017Amendment 5 (Unmanaged Forage Omnibus Amendment) was an omnibus amendment that implemented management measures to prevent the development of new, and the expansion of existing, commercial fisheries on certain forage species in the Mid-Atlantic. See the Unmanaged Forage Amendment page for more information about this action. Final Rule - 8/28/2017.

2018: Framework 3 (Omnibus Acceptable Biological Catch Framework) modifies the Council's process for setting catch limits. Specifically, this framework (1) establishes a process for setting constant multi-year Acceptable Biological Catch (ABCs) limits for Council-managed fisheries; (2) clarifies that the Atlantic Bluefish, Tilefish, and Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, and Butterfish FMPs will now automatically incorporate the best available scientific information in calculating ABCs (as all other Mid-Atlantic management plans do) rather than requiring a separate management action to adopt them; and (3) clarifies the process for setting ABCs for each of the four types of ABC control rules. Final Rule - 4/11/2018.

Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, Butterfish

1978: Atlantic Mackerel FMP established management of Atlantic mackerel fishery

1978: Atlantic Butterfish FMP established management of Atlantic butterfish fishery

1978: Squid FMP established management of squid fisheries

1979: Atlantic Mackerel Amendment 1 continued management of the Atlantic mackerel fishery

1979: Squid Amendment 1 continued management of the squid fishery

1980: Atlantic Butterfish Amendment 1 continued management of the Atlantic butterfish fishery

1980: Atlantic Mackerel Amendment 2 continued management of the Atlantic mackerel fishery.

1980: Atlantic Butterfish Amendment 2 continued management of the Atlantic butterfish fishery.

1983: Merged FMP consolidated management of Atlantic mackerel, squid, and butterfish fisheries under a single FMP.

1984: Amendment 1 implemented squid OY adjustment mechanism and revised the Atlantic mackerel mortality rate.

1986: Amendment 2 revised squid bycatch TALFF allowances, implemented framework adjustment process, converted expiration of fishing permits from indefinite to annual, and equated fishing year with calendar year.

1991: Amendment 3 established overfishing definitions for all four species.

1991: Amendment 4 limited the activity of directed foreign fishing and joint venture transfers to foreign vessels and allowed for specification of OY for Atlantic mackerel for up to three years.

1996: Amendment 5 adjusted Loligo MSY; eliminated directed foreign fisheries for Loligo, Illex, and butterfish; instituted a dealer and vessel reporting system; instituted an operator permitting system; implemented a limited access system for Loligo, Illex and butterfish; and expanded the management unit to include all Atlantic mackerel, Loligo, Illex, and butterfish under U.S. jurisdiction.

1997: Amendment 6 revised the overfishing definitions for Loligo, Illex, and butterfish; established directed fishery closure at 95% of DAH forLoligo, Illex and butterfish with post-closure trip limits for each species; and established a mechanism for seasonal management of theIllex fishery to improve the yield-per recruit.

1997: Amendment 7 established consistency among FMPs in the NE region of the U.S. relative to vessel permitting, replacement and upgrade criteria.

1998: Amendment 8 brought the FMP into compliance with new and revised National Standards and other required provisions of the Sustainable Fisheries Act. This action also added a framework adjustment procedure.

2001: Framework 1 created a quota set-aside for the purpose of conducting scientific research

2002: Framework 2 extended the moratorium on entry to the Illex fishery for an additional year; established that previous year specifications apply when specifications for the management unit are not published prior to the start of the fishing year (excluding TALFF specifications); and allowed for the specification of management measures for Loligo for a period of up to three years.

2003: Framework 3 extended the moratorium on entry to the Illex fishery for an additional year.

2004: Framework 4 extended the moratorium on entry to the Illex fishery for an additional five years

2007: Amendment 12 implemented standardized bycatch reporting methodology.

2008: Amendment 9 allowed for multi-year specifications for all four managed species (mackerel, butterfish, Illex, and Loligo) for up to 3 years; extended the moratorium on entry into the Illex fishery, without a sunset provision; adopted biological reference points for Loligo recommended by the stock assessment review committee (SARC); designated EFH for Loligo eggs based on available information; and prohibited bottom trawling by MSB-permitted vessels in Lydonia and Oceanographer Canyons.

2010: Amendment 10 implemented a butterfish rebuilding program, increased the Loligo minimum mesh in Trimesters 1 and 3, and implemented a 72-hour trip notification requirement for the Loligo fishery.

2010: Amendment 13 implemented Annual Catch Limits (ACLs), Annual Catch Targets (ACTs), and Accountability Measures (AMs).

2011: Amendment 11 implemented Limited Access in the Atl. mackerel fishery, updated EFH for all MSB species, and established a recreational-commercial allocation.

2012: Framework 5 broadened the scope of individuals who can perform hold measurements for limited access mackerel vessels

2012: Framework 6 clarified the Council's risk policy and describes the limited circumstances under which acceptable biological catch (ABC) can be increased for stocks without status determination criteria on overfishing.

2013: Framework 7 converted the butterfish mortality cap from a catch cap to a discard cap

2014: Amendment 14 implemented a variety of reporting and monitoring requirements for Atlantic mackerel and longfin squid fisheries, and implemented a river herring and shad catch cap for the Atlantic mackerel fishery (Appendices). Final Rule.

2013: Amendment 17 modified accountability measures for the Council's recreational fisheries, including Atlantic mackerel. Final Rule.

2014: Framework 8 implemented changes to improve operation of the butterfish discard cap in the longfin squid fishery and the directed butterfish fishery. Final Rule.

2018: Amendment 15 implemented Standardized Bycatch Reporting Methodology. Final Rule.

2018: Amendment 19 eliminated the requirement for vessel owners to submit "did not fish" reports for the months or weeks when their vessel was not fishing. This action also removed some of the restrictions for upgrading vessels listed on Federal fishing permits. Final Rule.

2015: Framework 9 established measures to enhance catch monitoring and address slippage (catch that is discarded before it has been sampled by observers) in the Atlantic mackerel fishery.

2016: Amendment 16 - Deep Sea Corals Amendment established management measures to protect deep sea corals from the impacts of commercial fishing gear in the Mid-Atlantic region. Final Rule.

2017: Amendment 18 - Unmanaged Forage Omnibus Amendment implemented management measures to prevent the development of new, and the expansion of existing, commercial fisheries on certain forage species in the Mid-Atlantic. Final Rule.

2017: Framework 10 - Omnibus For-Hire Electronic Trip Reporting Framework implemented a requirement for vessels that hold party/charter permits for Council-managed species to submit vessel trip reports electronically (eVTRs) while on a trip carrying passengers for hire.

2018: Framework 11 - Omnibus Acceptable Biological Catch Framework established a process for setting constant multi-year Acceptable Biological Catch (ABCs) limits for Council-managed fisheries; clarified that the Atlantic Bluefish, Tilefish, and Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, and Butterfish FMPs will now automatically incorporate the best available scientific information in calculating ABCs (as all other Mid-Atlantic management plans do) rather than requiring a separate management action to adopt them; clarified the process for setting ABCs for each of the four types of ABC control rules. Final Rule.

2018: Amendment 20 - Squid Amendment reduced latent directed permits, created limited access incidental permits, and lowered Trimester 2 post-closure trip limit to 250 pounds to discourage directed fishing after closures. Final Rule.

2018: Framework 12 - Atlantic Mackerel Closure Provisions Framework allow the possession of 5,000 lb of Atlantic mackerel after 100 percent of the domestic annual harvest is caught instead of prohibiting the possession of Atlantic mackerel for the rest of the year. Final Rule.

Bluefish

1990: Original FMP established management of Atlantic bluefish fisheries

2000: Amendment 1 brought the FMP into compliance with new and revised National Standards and other required provisions of the Sustainable Fisheries Act, implemented a rebuilding plan, and required that a commercial quota and recreational harvest limit be based on projected stock size estimates as derived from the latest stock assessment information. Amendment 1 - Volume 2 (Appendices).

2001: Framework 1 created a quota set-aside for the purpose of conducting scientific research. Final Rule.

2007: Amendment 2 implemented standardized bycatch reporting methodology. Final Rule.

2011: Amendment 3 established Annual Catch Limits (ACLs) and Accountability Measures (AMs). Final Rule.

2013: Amendment 4 modified the accountability measures for the Council's recreational fisheries. Final Rule.

2015: Amendment 5 implemented a new Standardized Bycatch Reporting Methodology to address a legal challenge. Final Rule.

2017: Amendment 6 - Unmanaged Forage Omnibus Amendment implemented management measures to prevent the development of new, and the expansion of existing, commercial fisheries on certain forage species in the Mid-Atlantic. Final Rule.

2017: Framework 2 - Omnibus For-Hire Electronic Trip Reporting Framework implemented a requirement for vessels that hold party/charter permits for Council-managed species to submit vessel trip reports electronically (eVTRs) while on a trip carrying passengers for hire.

2018: Framework 3 - Omnibus Acceptable Biological Catch Framework established a process for setting constant multi-year Acceptable Biological Catch (ABC) limits for Council-managed fisheries. This action clarifies that the Atlantic Bluefish, Tilefish, and Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, and Butterfish FMPs will now automatically incorporate the best available scientific information in calculating ABCs (as all other Mid-Atlantic management plans do) rather than requiring a separate management action to adopt them. This action also clarifies the process for setting ABCs for each of the four types of ABC control rules. Final Rule.

Surfclam and Ocean Quahog

Original FMP (1977)

  • Established management of surfclam and ocean quahog fisheries through September 1979
  • Established quarterly quotas for surfclams
  • Established annual quotas for ocean quahogs
  • Established effort limitation, permit, and logbook provisions
  • Instituted a moratorium on entry into the surfclam fishery for one year to allow time for the development of an alternative limited entry system such as a "stock certificate" program

Amendment 1 (1979)

  • Extended management authority through December 31, 1979
  • Maintained the moratorium

Amendment 2 (1979)

  • Extended the FMP through the end of 1981
  • Divided the surfclam portion of the management unit into the New England and Mid-Atlantic Area
  • Introduced a "bad weather make up day"
  • Maintained the moratorium in the Mid-Atlantic Area

Amendment 3 (1981)

  • Extended the FMP indefinitely
  • Imposed a 5.5" surfclam minimum size limit in the Mid-Atlantic Area
  • Expanded the surfclam fishing week in the Mid-Atlantic Area to Sunday - Thursday from Monday – Thursday
  • Established a framework basis for quota setting
  • Proposed a permit limitation system to replace the moratorium which was disapproved by NMFS
  • NMFS extended the moratorium  

Amendment 4 (1984)

  • Provided that any unharvested portion of a bimonthly allocation be added to the immediately following bimonthly allocation rather than being prorated over all remaining bimonthly periods and that trip and weekly limits be by vessel classes based on relative fishing power
  • Amendment 4 was implemented on an emergency basis for 180 days beginning 1 July 1984
  • NMFS subsequently determined that the document was not structurally complete for review

Amendment 5 (1985)

  • Allowed for revision of the surfclam minimum size limit provision
  • Extended the size limit throughout the entire fishery
  • Instituted a requirement that cages be tagged

Amendment 6 (1986)

  • Divided the New England Area into the Nantucket Shoals and Georges Bank Areas, the dividing line being 69° N Longitude
  • Combined the provisions of Amendment 4 with the Mid-Atlantic Council's Amendment 6 into one document
  • Replaced the bimonthly quotas with quarterly quotas
  • Eliminate the weekly landing limits for the Nantucket Shoals Area
  • Clarified the quota adjustment provisions for the Nantucket Shoals and Georges Bank Areas
  • Established one landing per trip provision

Amendment 7 (1987)

  • Changed the quota distribution on Georges Bank to equal quarterly quotas
  • Revised the roll over provisions

Amendment 8 (1988)

  • Replaced the regulated fishing time system in the surfclam and ocean quahog fisheries with an individual transferable quota (ITQ) system

Amendment 9 (1996)

  • Revised the overfishing definitions for surfclams and ocean quahogs in response to a scientific review by NMFS

Amendment 10 (1998)

  • Provided management measures for the small artisanal fishery for ocean quahogs (mahogany clams) off the northeast coast of Maine

Amendment 11 (1998)

  • Achieved consistency among Mid-Atlantic and New England FMPs on vessel replacement and upgrade provisions, permit history transfer and splitting and renewal regulations for fishing vessels issued Northeast Limited Access Federal Fishery permits

Amendment 12 (1998)

  • Brought the FMP into compliance with the new and revised National Standards and other requirements of the 1996 Sustainable Fisheries Act
  • Established a framework adjustment process
  • Implemented an Operator Permit requirement for fishermen that did not already have them for other fisheries
  • The Regional Administrator partially approved Amendment 12 with the exceptions of the proposed surfclam overfishing definition and the fishing gear impacts to EFH section. 

Amendment 13 (2003)

  • Appendices
  • Addressed various disapproved sections of Amendment 12 

Amendment 14 (2007)

  • Standardized bycatch reporting methodology

Framework 1 (2007)

  • Addressed issues related to Vessel Monitoring Systems (VMS) and enforcement

Amendment 16 (2011)

  • Established Annual Catch Limits (ACLs) and Accountability Measures (AMs)

Amendment 15 (2015)

  • Final Rule
  • Standardized Bycatch Reporting Methodology

Amendment 18 (2015)

  • Final Rule
  • Eliminated the requirement for vessel owners to submit "did not fish" reports for the months or weeks when their vessel was not fishing
  • Removed some of the restrictions for upgrading vessels listed on Federal fishing permits

Amendment 17 (2016)

  • Establishes a cost recovery program for the individual transferable quota (ITQ) fishery, as required by the Magnuson-Stevens Act. 
  • Contains provisions to remove the optimum yield ranges from the management plan and to change how biological reference points are incorporated into the plan.

Amendment 19 - Unmanaged Forage Omnibus Amendment (2017)

  • Final Rule
  • Implements management measures to prevent the development of new, and the expansion of existing, commercial fisheries on certain forage species in the Mid-Atlantic

Framework 2 - Omnibus Acceptable Biological Catch Framework (2018)

  • Final Rule
  • Establishes a process for setting constant multi-year Acceptable Biological Catch (ABCs) limits for Council-managed fisheries;
  • Clarifies that the Atlantic Bluefish, Tilefish, and Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, and Butterfish FMPs will now automatically incorporate the best available scientific information in calculating ABCs (as all other Mid-Atlantic management plans do) rather than requiring a separate management action to adopt them;
  • Clarifies the process for setting ABCs for each of the four types of ABC control rules.

Tilefish

2001: The Original Tilefish FMP initiated management for golden tilefish and included management and administrative measures to ensure effective management of the tilefish resource. The FMP also implemented a limited entry program and a tiered commercial quota allocation of the TAL. Other elements of the original FMP included: a stock rebuilding strategy; permits and reporting requirements for commercial vessels, operators, and dealers; a prohibition on the use of gear other than longline gear by limited-access tilefish vessels (later amended see discussion below); and a framework adjustment process. Final Rule - 9/26/2001.

2001Framework 1 added provisions for a research set-aside quota. Final Rule - 8/10/2001.

2007Amendment 2 was an Omnibus Amendment that implemented a Standardized Bycatch Reporting Methodology (SBRM). Final Rule - 1/28/2008.

2009Amendment 1 (Appendices and Figures) implemented an Individual Fishing Quota in the directed golden tilefish fishery. It also implemented new reporting requirements and gear modifications, addressed recreational fishing issues, and reviewed the EFH components of the FMP, including implementing gear restricted areas to prevent bottom trawling in habitat areas of particular concern. Final Rule - 8/24/2009.

2011Amendment 3 was an omnibus amendment that implemented Acceptable Biological Catches (ABCs) and Annual Catch Limits (ACLs) to avoid overfishing and ensure accountability. Final Rule - 9/29/2011.

2015Amendment 4 was an omnibus amendment that implemented a new Standardized Bycatch Reporting Methodology to address a legal challenge. Final Rule - 6/30/2015.

2017Amendment 5 (Unmanaged Forage Omnibus Amendment) was an omnibus amendment that implemented management measures to prevent the development of new, and the expansion of existing, commercial fisheries on certain forage species in the Mid-Atlantic. See the Unmanaged Forage Amendment page for more information about this action. Final Rule - 8/28/2017.

2017: Framework 3 - Omnibus For-Hire Electronic Trip Reporting Framework implemented a requirement for vessels that hold party/charter permits for Council-managed species to submit vessel trip reports electronically (eVTRs) while on a trip carrying passengers for hire. Final Rule - 9/11/2017.

2017Amendment 6 (Blueline Tilefish Amendment) added blueline tilefish (Caulolatilus microps) as a managed species in the Tilefish Fishery Management Plan, changing the name of the plan to the Golden and Blueline Tilefish Fishery Management Plan. See the Blueline Tilefish Amendment page for more information about this action. Final Rule - 11/15/2017.

2018: Framework 2 implemented several changes intended to improve and simplify the administration of the golden tilefish fishery. These changes include removing an outdated reporting requirement, proscribing allowed gear for the recreational fishery, adding landings ratios/qualifiers in the incidental fishery, requiring commercial golden tilefish be landed with the head and fins attached, and revising how assumed discards are accounted for when setting harvest limits. Final Rule - 3/13/2018.

2018: Framework 4 (Omnibus Acceptable Biological Catch Framework) modifies the Council's process for setting catch limits. Specifically, this framework (1) establishes a process for setting constant multi-year Acceptable Biological Catch (ABCs) limits for Council-managed fisheries; (2) clarifies that the Atlantic Bluefish, Tilefish, and Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, and Butterfish FMPs will now automatically incorporate the best available scientific information in calculating ABCs (as all other Mid-Atlantic management plans do) rather than requiring a separate management action to adopt them; and (3) clarifies the process for setting ABCs for each of the four types of ABC control rules. Final Rule - 4/11/2018.