Federal For-Hire Electronic Reporting Outreach in the South Atlantic

Project Contact: Kathleen Howington, Project Outreach Specialist; Contact Information: Kathleen.Howington@safmc.net; Office: 843-571-4366; Cell: 864-431-3005

Scroll down this page to read more about the project and upcoming training sessions!

In December 2016 the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council approved an amendment that, if implemented, would require weekly electronic reporting of all charter vessels operating under a South Atlantic federal for-hire permit. This amendment is under review by the Secretary of Commerce and NOAA Fisheries is working to develop an implementation plan.

If the amendment is approved, we expect implementation sometime in the summer of 2018. The public will have additional opportunities to comment on the proposed reporting requirements when NMFS publishes the notice of availability of the amendment and again when they publish the proposed rule.

While the amendment is being reviewed and an implementation plan is developed, the Council is gearing up to help charter operators understand the amendment and the potential application of electronic reporting.

The first step in our continued pilot/testing process will be to conduct webinars informing the public of about the amendment, setting up ACCSP user accounts for charter operators, and conducting trainings around the South Atlantic on how to access and use the pilot reporting system.
Learn more about the Amendment - click here

Click the links below for additional information:

Who might be affected by implementation?
If the amendment is implemented, South Atlantic federal for-hire permit in the following fisheries, may be required to report electronically on a weekly basis:

  • Snapper Grouper
  • Dolphin Wahoo
  • Coastal Migratory Pelagic

However, if you are a dual permit holder and already report to a more comprehensive reporting system (i.e. GARFO or Gulf of Mexico) you will not be required to report to the South Atlantic. The South Atlantic Council’s intent, as reflected in the amendment, is to recognize those reports submitted per GARFO or Gulf of Mexico Permits as fulfilling the requirements of the amendment.

What types of information might be reported?
Below is a table of some of the reporting information from the amendment that for-hire captains may have to report on a weekly basis using some type of electronic reporting system.

Vessel and Captain ID Start/end date of trip Start/end time of trip Hours fished
Location fished Number of anglers Number of crew Gear type used
Targeted species Average depth fished Types of species caught Charter fee
Number of discarded per species Number kept per species Fuel price Amount of fuel used

What electronic reporting tool might be used to submit reports?
Other regions that already require electronic reporting in fisheries often use web-based and mobile application-based tools to support electronic reporting. The reporting tool that may be used in the South Atlantic region has not been decided yet and will be part of the implementation plan being developed.

However, the Council has been conducting a pilot project for the past year to develop and test a tablet-based mobile application that would allow for-hire captains to submit fishing trips electronically. As part of the Council's upcoming training sessions, for-hire captains will have a chance to test out the pilot tablet application.

Project Contact:
Kathleen Howington, Project Outreach Specialist
Office: 843-571-4366
Cell: 864-431-3005


As mentioned above, in conjunction with the Atlantic Coast Cooperative Statistics Program (ACCSP) and the South Atlantic states, the Council worked on a pilot project that developed a tablet-based electronic reporting application to test as a possible tool for for-hire captains to report electronically. Captains attending training sessions will have the opportunity to test out this electronic reporting application.

In order to use the app and set up your account, each permit holder will be assigned a username and password, using the SERO database mailing contact information. Username and temporary password information will be provided in a second letter that will be mailed to all permit holders closer to the training dates in your area.

If you have other captains that operate your federally permitted vessel, they will need to have their own individual accounts set up as well, in order to learn how to use the pilot reporting system and to submit electronic reports under your permit.

To submit account information for other captains, you have two options:

1)      Fill out the additional account form at this link: https://safmc.wufoo.com/forms/satl-forhire-electronic-reportingaccount-info/

2)      Email Kathleen Howington (Kathleen.howington@safmc.net) the following information – Full name (first, middle, last, suffix), birth date, the names of the vessels the user will be associated with, permits associated with the user, mailing address for the user, and user's email.

Informational Webinars

Council staff will host informational webinars twice a month for federal for-hire permit holders to provide information about electronic reporting, the proposed amendment, and upcoming training sessions. Registration is required.  

If no one registers for the webinar by 6:00 PM, the webinar will be cancelled. If a webinar has registered participants and none have logged in by 6:15 PM, the webinar will be cancelled.

To help permit holders become familiar with the tablet application and the pilot reporting system, training sessions are being scheduled throughout North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and the East coast of Florida in 2017 and 2018 to educate permit holders on the amendment under review, the possible reporting requirements, and to learn how to use the pilot electronic reporting system that may be one of the tools used to fulfill the requirements once the amendment is implemented. We will be in touch with fishermen in each state several weeks in advance of the training in your area to provide further details.

Trainings have already occurred in South Carolina, Georgia, and North Carolina. But we will eventually revisit those states for in-person training sessions in 2018.

Florida In-Person Trainings                                
DATE/TIME: 2/20/18,  6:30 PM – 9:30 PM

CITY: Mayport Area

LOCATION: Gail Baker Community Center 2072 George Street, Atlantic Beach, FL 32233


DATE/TIME: 2/21/18,  6 PM – 9 PM

CITY: St. Augustine Area

LOCATION: Northeast Florida Marlin Association at Camachee Cove Marina 3030 Harbor Drive, St. Augustine, FL 32084


DATE/TIME: 2/22/18,  6 PM – 9 PM

CITY: New Smyrna Beach Area

LOCATION: Marine Discovery Center 520 Barracuda BLVD, New Smyrna Beach, FL 32169


Stay tuned for additional dates/locations of trainings being offered in other states!

The Amendment is currently under review by the National Marine Fisheries Service and the Secretary of Commerce.

Note: All of the outreach efforts currently underway by the Council are part of a pre-implementation plan.