2021 Pacific Halibut Catch Sharing Plan
NOAA Fisheries is currently working on a rulemaking to approve the Pacific Fishery Management Council's recommended adjustments to the Catch Sharing Plan and issue recreational management measures. The International Pacific Halibut Commission (IPHC) will continue issuing commercial and recreational charter licenses for the 2021 season.
Since 1988, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) has implemented Catch Sharing Plans that allocate the IPHC regulatory Area 2A Pacific halibut catch limit between treaty Indian and non-Indian harvesters, and among non-Indian commercial and sport fisheries. The Council develops Catch Sharing Plans in accordance with the Northern Pacific Halibut Act of 1982. In 1995, NMFS approved a Council-recommended, long-term Catch Sharing Plan (60 FR 14651, March 20, 1995 (pdf)). The Council has recommended and NMFS has approved adjustments to the Catch Sharing Plan each year to address the changing needs of these fisheries. In addition, each year NMFS must issue management measures to govern the sport fishery (50 CFR 300.63(b)(1)). These measures include the recreational fishery seasons, allocations, closed areas, and bag limits for Area 2A.