12/4/18 – NOAA Fisheries – FB-084: New Federal Regulations for Golden Tilefish in the South Atlantic Region

South Atlantic Fishery Bulletin 
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FB18-084
FISHERY BULLETIN ISSUE DATE: December 4, 2018

CONTACT: Sustainable Fisheries, 727-824-5305

 

New Federal Regulations for Golden Tilefish in the South Atlantic Region

KEY MESSAGE:
NOAA Fisheries has published a final rule which revises the catch limits for golden tilefish.  The final rule reduces golden tilefish catch limits based on the most recent population assessment.  The purpose of the final rule is to end overfishing (rate of removal is too high) of golden tilefish in the South Atlantic.
WHEN RULE WILL TAKE EFFECT: 
  • The final rule is effective on January 4, 2019.
WHAT THIS MEANS: 
  • The final rule establishes a total catch limit at 342,000 pounds gutted weight (lbs gw).
  • This final rule specifies the commercial and recreational catch limits and component commercial quotas using the existing allocations.
  • Catch limits under the final rule are:
Total catch limit
Commercial catch limit
Commercial Hook-and-Line catch limit
Commercial Longline catch limit
Recreational catch limit
(pounds gutted weight)
(pounds gutted weight)
(pounds gutted weight)
(pounds gutted weight)
(numbers of fish)
342,000
331,740
82,935
248,805
2,316
FORMAL FEDERAL REGISTER NAME/NUMBER: 83 FR 62508, published December 4, 2018.

This bulletin serves as a Small Entity Compliance Guide, complying with section 212 of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQs)
Why is the reduction in the catch limit necessary? 
  • In April 2016, a population assessment update for golden tilefish was completed.  The update assessment indicated that the golden tilefish population is undergoing overfishing but is not overfished (population abundance is too low).
  • As mandated by the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council and NOAA Fisheries must end overfishing of golden tilefish.  The final rule for Amendment 28 reduces the catch limit to end overfishing of golden tilefish.
  • An interim rule, which temporarily reduced overfishing of golden tilefish, is effective through January 3, 2019.  This final rule replaces the interim measures.
What are the actions in the final rule? 
  • The final rule establishes a total catch limit at 342,000 pounds gutted weight (lbs gw).
  • This final rule specifies the commercial and recreational sector catch limits and component commercial quotas using the existing sector allocations of 97 percent commercial and 3 percent recreational, as well as allocating 25 percent of the commercial ACL to the hook-and-line component and 75 percent of the commercial ACL to the longline component.
  • The final rule revises the commercial and recreational catch limits for golden tilefish in the South Atlantic (See Table 1 below).
Table 1. Revised commercial and recreational catch limits for golden tilefish.
Total catch limit
Commercial catch limit
Commercial Hook-and-Line catch limit
Commercial Longline catch limit
Recreational catch limit
(pounds gutted weight)
(pounds gutted weight)
(pounds gutted weight)
(pounds gutted weight)
(numbers of fish)
342,000
331,740
82,935
248,805
2,316
Where can I find more information on the environmental assessment and the final rule?
  • Contact NOAA Fisheries, Southeast Regional Office
By Mail: Karla Gore
NOAA Fisheries, Southeast Regional Office
Sustainable Fisheries Division
263 13th Avenue South
St. Petersburg, Florida 33701-5505
By FAX: (727) 824-5308
By Phone: (727) 824-5305
The environmental assessment and rule may be found online at the NOAA Fisheries Southeast Regional Office Web site at:https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/action/regulatory-amendment-28-golden-tilefish-annual-catch-limits.