Snapper Grouper Regulatory Amendment 28

Snapper Grouper Regulatory Amendment 28

The status of the golden tilefish stock in the South Atlantic was assessed through SEDAR 25 (2011) and an update was conducted in 2016 with data through 2014 (SEDAR 25 update 2016). The update determined the golden tilefish stock is undergoing overfishing but is not overfished. The updated assessment indicates that a large reduction in harvest is needed to end overfishing.

In March 2017, the Council requested the SSC consider recommending an interim ABC at 75% FMSYand requested that the SEFSC conduct an update to the assessment to address key uncertainties raised during the prior SSC and Council deliberations.  However, the SEFSC indicated that such an update could not be completed in 2017 due to concerns with analyst availability and otolith evaluation. At its April 2017 meeting, the SSC discussed the Council’s request but chose not to deviate from their previous ABC recommendation (based on the P* approach).

In June 2017, the Council requested that NMFS issue interim regulations to reduce overfishing of golden tilefish and set the ACL for 2018 at 323,000 pounds, the projected yield at 75% FMSY.  The interim rule became effective on January 2, 2018.

Regulatory Amendment 28 is being developed to establish permanent measures to end overfishing and revise management measures.  At their March 2018 meeting, the Council requested that the SSC again reconsider their ABC recommendation at their May 2018 meeting.  The Council directed staff to continue work on the amendment with the intent of approving for formal review in June 2018 and thus allow time for implementation before the interim rule expires.

In addition to adjusting catch levels, the amendment considers changing the fishing year start date for the hook-and-line component of the commercial sector. In June, the Council approved the amendment for formal review.

NOAA Fisheries published the final rule for Regulatory Amendment 28 on December 4, 2018 and regulations will become effective on January 4, 2019.



Council Process

  • Pre-Scoping:  2017
  • Scoping:  March 2018
  • Public Hearing:  June 2018
  • Final Approval:  June 2018

NMFS Process

  • Secretarial Review:  July 2018
  • Rule Making:  September 2018
  • Implementation:  January 4, 2019