The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council will hold a public hearing on Thursday, January 15, 2015, at 6:00 p.m. to solicit public comments on the Cost Recovery Amendment to the Atlantic Surfclam and Ocean Quahog Fishery Management Plan. The hearing will be held at the Ocean Pines Branch Library, 11107 Cathell Road, Berlin, MD, 21811, telephone (410) 208-4014.
This Amendment to the Atlantic Surfclam and Ocean Quahog Fishery Management Plan includes proposed measures to: (1) Collect fees and recovering costs associated with the management of the Atlantic surfclam and ocean quahog individual transferrable quota fisheries, (2) Facilitate incorporation of revised stock status determination criteria (i.e., biological reference points) for surfclams and ocean quahogs into the Fishery Management Plan, and (3) Modify or eliminate the optimum yield (OY) ranges for surfclam and ocean quahog currently in the plan.
The Amendment contains a range of management alternatives under consideration by the Council, and their expected impacts as indicated by the Environmental Assessment. During the public comment period, which will include public hearings, the public may comment on any aspect of the draft Amendment. Following a review of the comments and further development of alternatives, the Council will choose preferred management measures and submit the Amendment to the Secretary of Commerce for approval and publication of proposed and final rules, both of which have additional comment periods.
Comments may be submitted in writing or provided verbally at any of the four public hearings. Go to www.mafmc.org/actions/cost-recovery-amendment for additional details and to download the draft amendment.