The Mid-Atlantic Council and the ASMFC have scheduled fourteen scoping hearings September 29 – October 22 to gather public input on the range of issues to be considered in the Comprehensive Summer Flounder Amendment.
The draft Omnibus Amendment to Simplify Vessel Baselines is now available for public comment through September 22, 2014.
The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council voted during this week’s meeting in Washington, D.C. to suspend the Research Set-Aside (RSA) program in 2015
NOAA Fisheries has announced that, beginning in 2015, it plans to provide funding for inshore trawl surveys under the Northeast Area Monitoring and Assessment Program (NEAMAP).
During last week's meeting in Freehold, New Jersey, the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council initiated a framework to consider opening the recreational black sea bass fishery earlier in the year in 2015.
Last month the Northeast Fisheries Science Center released a new butterfish stock assessment which concluded that the stock is not overfished and that overfishing is not occurring. The fishery's status had previously been characterized as "unknown."
During last week's meeting in Montauk, New York, the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council adopted golden tilefish management measures for the next three years.
An Open Letter to Federal Fishery Permit Holders in the Northeast Regarding Observers and At-Sea Monitors
Today, leadership from NOAA Fisheries Northeast and the chairmen of the New England and Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Councils issued an open letter to the fishing industry urging cooperation and respect for fishery observers and at-sea monitors during what is a difficult fishing year for many. Read more...
Last week the Council approved an acceptable biological catch (ABC) limit of 5.5 million pounds for black sea bass for both 2013 and 2014. If approved by NMFS, the ABC would result in a recreational harvest limit of 2.26 million pounds and a commercial quota of 2.17 million pounds.
The Commercial Fisheries Research Foundation is currently administering a voucher program for fishing vessel owners to obtain financial assistance to install one or both promising gear modifications onboard their vessels for use in small mesh fisheries (including squid, whiting, and scup) to avoid unwanted bycatch of winter flounder.
The Atlantic Coastal Cooperative Statistics Program (ACCSP) has brought together fishermen, dealers, and fisheries managers to evaluate electronic reporting on the Atlantic coast. The first part of this project is a survey to collect attitudes and opinions from Atlantic coast fishermen and dealers about the current state of electronic reporting.
The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council has scheduled two scoping hearings for the public to provide comments on Amendment 16 to the Atlantic mackerel, squid, and butterfish fishery management plan.
The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council will hold a series of public hearings next week to collect comments on Special Management Zone designation for Delaware reefs.
During the most recent Council meeting, more than 40 members of the public turned out in person or online to ask questions and discuss the storm's impacts with Council members and National Marine Fisheries Service representatives. The next day, the Council unanimously approved a resolution of support for the federal fisheries disaster declaration in the Mid-Atlantic region following Hurricane Sandy (full text below). The resolution was introduced by Chairman Rick Robins and was passed unanimously by the full Council.
December Council Meeting Summary
December 10-13, 2012
At last week’s meeting in Baltimore, MD, the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council considered a number of issues related to the recreational black sea bass fishery. The fishery closed on November 1 after preliminary landings estimates indicated that the harvest limit had been exceeded. This closure prompted concerns related to the black sea bass stock assessment and the current accountability measures that could result in a recreational fishery closure in 2014.