SAFMC March 2016 Council Meeting

SAFMC Council Meeting

March 7-11, 2016

Westin Jekyll Island
110 Ocean Way
Jekyll Island, GA 31527
Phone: 1-888-627-8316 or 912-635-4545

Full Meeting Agenda 

Briefing Book Materials 

Webinar Registration: 

Watch the meeting LIVE as it happens - Sign up for daily Webinars by clicking on the REGISTER links in the table below. 

REGISTER - Monday, March 7  REGISTER - Tuesday, March 8
REGISTER - Wednesday, March 9 REGISTER - Thursday, March 10
REGISTER - Friday, March 11

Final Summary Motions - (posted after meeting concludes)

Schedule At-A-Glance:

{Except for advertised (scheduled) public hearings and public comment sessions, the times indicated on the agenda may be adjusted as necessary to accommodate the completion of agenda items. Interested parties should be aware that meetings may start earlier or later than indicated.}

Monday, March 7 

1:30 pm - 5:00 pm Law Enforcement Advisory Panel
1:30 pm - 2:30 pm Protected Resources Committee
2:30 pm - 5:00 pm Joint Dolphin Wahoo/Snapper Grouper Committee

Tuesday, March 8

8:30 am - 12:00 pm Law Enforcement Advisory Panel
8:30 am - 10:00 am Advisory Panel Selection Committee (PARTIALLY CLOSED)
10:00 am - 12:00 pm SEDAR Committee (PARTIALLY CLOSED)
1:30 pm - 2:30 pm Law Enforcement Committee
2:30 pm - 5:00 pm Snapper Grouper Committee

Wednesday, March 9

8:30 am - 5:30 pm Snapper Grouper Committee
5:30 pm  Formal Public Comment

Thursday, March 10

8:30 am -  10:00 am  Mackerel Committee
10:00 am - 12:00 pm Data Collection Committee
1:30 pm - 2:30 pm Data Collection Committee
2:30 pm - 3:30 pm Executive Finance Committee
3:30 pm - 5:00 pm ~South Atlantic Full Council Session~

Friday, March 11

8:30 am - 12:00 pm ~South Atlantic Full Council Session~


Wednesday, March 9 at 5:30 PM - Public Comment
Formal public comment accepted on meeting agenda items. See the meeting agenda and briefing book materials for details. 

Submitting written comments: Written comments on the following amendments and agenda items can be submitted up to the day of the public comment session. 

  • Snapper Grouper Amendment 36 (Spawning Special Management Zones & System Management Plan)
  • MPA System Management Plan
  • Oculina Review Report
  • Draft ESA/MSA Integration Agreement 
  • CMP Amendment 26 (King Mackerel Annual Catch Limits/Boundary/Management Measures)

Public comments can be e-mailed to Please include in the subject line of your e-mail the name of the amendment or agenda item for reference.


Snapper Grouper Committee Meeting

  • Items Scheduled for Final Approval:

    • Snapper Grouper Amendment 36 (Spawning Special Management Zones(SMZs)/System Management Plan) - considers using Spawning SMZs to provide additional protection to species in the snapper grouper fishery management unit, including speckled hind and warsaw grouper. The amendment would also revise the boundary of the Charleston Deep Reef MPA, and includes an action to address transit and anchoring provisions within newly designated Spawning SMZs.  The SMZ System Management Plan will specify the outreach, law enforcement, and monitoring/research projects necessary to effectively monitor and evaluate the SMZs.

    • MPA System Management Plan - Review of the System Management Plan for the eight (8) Deepwater Marine Protected Areas in the South Atlantic outlining research/monitoring, law enforcement, and outreach activities.

    • Oculina Review Report - Review of the Oculina review report outlining research/monitoring, law enforcement, and outreach activities.​

  • Other Amendments:

    • Snapper Grouper Amendment 37 (hogfish) - The amendment includes actions to modify the management boundary between the South Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico, establish two separate stocks in the South Atlantic with a “Georgia/North Carolina” stock and a “Florida Keys/East Florida” stock for management purposes, specify the MSY, MSST, ACLs and ACTs for both stocks and establish a rebuilding plan for the Florida Keys/East Florida stock.  The rebuilding plan includes measures to increase the minimum size limit, establish a commercial trip limit, reduce the recreational bag limit, and establish a recreational fishing season. The amendment would also establish Accountability Measures for both stocks. The Council will review public hearing comments.

    • Snapper Grouper Amendment 41 (mutton snapper)- Includes actions to specify the Maximum Sustainable Yield (MSY), Maximum Stock Size Threshold (MSST), revise the Annual Catch Limit (ACL) and Optimum Yield (OY) and recreational Annual Catch Target (ACT).  The amendment also includes options to modify the recreational bag limit. The Council will review scoping comments.

Data Collection Committee Meeting

  • Atlantic Generic For-Hire Reporting Amendment (electronic reporting for charter vessels) - The amendment will effect the fishery management plans for Snapper Grouper, Atlantic Dolphin Wahoo and Coastal Migratory Pelagic fisheries. The amendment includes actions to require mandatory electronic reporting for charter (six-pack) vessels and modifies existing reporting requirements for headboats. The reporting requirements would affect vessels involved in the South Atlantic Snapper Grouper fishery, Dolphin Wahoo fishery, and Coastal Migratory Pelagic fishery along the Atlantic coast. The Council will review public hearing comments.

  • Citizen Science Initiative - Update on the January 2016 Citizen Science Program Design Workshop and review of the Citizen Science Program Blueprint outlining proposed recommendations from the workshop.

Mackerel Committee Meeting

  • Coastal Migratory Pelagic Amendment 26 (king mackerel) - Actions in the amendment includes actions modify the king mackerel stock boundary and update king mackerel annual catch limits based on the recent stock assessment (SEDAR 38), revise Atlantic king mackerel commercial management for the Southern Zone, create an incidental catch allowance for Atlantic king mackerel in the shark gillnet fishery, update the Gulf commercial zone allocations, consider changing the recreational/commercial allocations for Gulf king mackerel, and revise the bag limit for Gulf king mackerel. The Council will review public hearing comments and is scheduled to approve the amendment for submission to the Secretary of Commerce.

Protected Resources Committee Meeting

  • Draft ESA/MSA Integration Agreement - The integration agreement is designed to improve the involvement of regional fishery management councils in the ESA section 7 consultation process. At the December 2015 Council meeting, the draft agreement was reviewed and Council is scheduled to approve the agreement at their March meeting.

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