Approval of 2023 and 2024 Sector Operations Plans and Allocation of 2023 Northeast Multispecies Annual Catch Entitlements
We are approving fishing years 2023 and 2024 sector operations plans and contracts for 15 groundfish sectors and granting 18 regulatory exemptions to improve the efficiency and flexibility of sector vessels. We are also allocating preliminary fishing year 2023 annual catch entitlements based on Framework Adjustments 61 and 63 to the Northeast Multispecies Fishery Management Plan, and announcing default specifications for nine Northeast multispecies stocks (Georges Bank (GB) cod; GB haddock; Gulf of Maine (GOM) haddock; Southern New England/Mid-Atlantic yellowtail flounder; Cape Cod/GOM yellowtail flounder; American plaice; witch flounder; white hake; and pollock).
Approval of sector operations plans and contracts is necessary to allocate annual catch entitlements to the sectors for sectors to operate. This action allows limited access permit holders to continue to operate or form sectors, as authorized under the Northeast Multispecies Fishery Management Plan, and exempts sectors from certain effort control regulations.