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Groundfish of the Gulf of Alaska Management Area Fishery Management Plan Historical Amendments 41-50

Overview

Description
Historic amendments to the Fishery Management Plan for the Groundfish of the Gulf of Alaska Management Area
Fishing Type
Commercial
Action Status
Final Rule
Effective
Amendments to the Fishery Management Plan from 1996-2004

Summary

These actions are necessary to promote management and conservation of groundfish and other living marine resources. They are intended to further the goals and objectives contained in the fishery management plan that governs these fisheries.


Amendment 41

This amendment, submitted by the North Pacific Fishery Management Council established the License Limitation Program (LLP). The LLP limits the number, size, and specific operation of vessels that may be deployed in the groundfish fisheries in the exclusive economic zone off Alaska, except for demersal shelf rockfish east of 140 deg. W. long. and sablefish managed under the Individual Fishing Quota (IFQ) Program.

Federal Register

Amendment 42

This amendment allowed quota shares and their associated IFQ assigned to vessels in larger size categories to be used on smaller vessels. This action was necessary to increase the flexibility of QS use and transfer while maintaining the management goals of the IFQ Program. It was intended to relieve certain restrictions in the IFQ Program.

Federal Register

Supporting Materials

Amendment 43

This amendment was necessary to increase the consolidation levels for small quota share blocks for Pacific halibut and sablefish managed under the Individual Fishing Quota IFQ) program. This action was intended to maintain consistency with the objectives of the IFQ program (i.e., prevent excessive consolidation of quota share, maintain diversity of the fishing fleet, and allow new entrants into the fishery), while increasing the program's flexibility by allowing a moderately greater amount of quota share to be "swept-up'' into larger amounts that can be fished more economically.

Federal Register

Amendment 44

This amendment revised definitions of acceptable biological catch and overfishing levels for groundfish species or species groups. This action was necessary to ensure that conservation and management measures continue to be based upon the best scientific information available. It is intended to advance the North Pacific Fishery Management Council's ability to achieve, on a continuing basis, the optimum yield from fisheries under its authority.

Federal Register

Supporting Materials

Amendment 45

This amendment combined the third and fourth quarterly allowances for pollock in the three statistical areas of the combined Western and Central Regulatory Area into single seasonal allowances that become available on September 1 of each fishing year. Changes to the final 1996 harvest specifications of Gulf of Alaska pollock were also made to reflect the revised seasonal allowances. These measures were necessary to address management problems that had been identified by the fishing industry.

Federal Register

Supporting Materials

Amendment 46

This amendment removed black and blue rockfish from the complex of species managed under the plan. The rule makes conforming changes to the plan implementing regulations to reflect the removal of black and blue rockfish from the complex. The State of Alaska will regulate fishing for these species by vessels registered under State law. This action was necessary to allow the State to implement more responsive, regionally based, management of these species than was currently possible under the plan. The intended effect of this action was to repeal duplicative Federal regulations, provide for more responsive State management and prevent localized overfishing of black and blue rockfish stocks.

Federal Register

Supporting Materials

Amendment 47

This amendment created an interim North Pacific Groundfish Observer Program until a long-term program that addresses concerns about observer data integrity, equitable distribution of observer coverage costs, and observer compensation and working conditions is recommended by the Council and implemented by NOAA Fisheries. This Program superseded the Research Plan under Amendment 30.

Federal Register

Supporting Materials

Amendment 48

This amendment revised the administrative process used to establish annual harvest specifications and updated the plan by:

  • revising the description of the groundfish fisheries and participants
  • revising text to simplify wording and correct typographical errors
  • revising the description of the North Pacific Fishery Management Council Groundfish Plan Teams' responsibilities

Federal Register

Supporting Materials

Amendment 49

This amendment required all vessels fishing for groundfish in the Gulf of Alaska to retain all pollock and Pacific cod beginning January 1, 1998, and all shallow water flatfish beginning January 1, 2003. It also established a 15-percent minimum utilization standard for all at-sea processors beginning January 1, 1998, for pollock and Pacific cod and, beginning January 1, 2003, for shallow-water flatfish. This action was necessary to respond to the socioeconomic needs of the fishing industry that had been identified by the North Pacific Fishery Management Council.

Federal Register

Supporting Materials

Amendment 50

This amendment authorized the distribution of Pacific halibut taken as bycatch in the specified groundfish trawl fisheries off Alaska. Distribution is to economically disadvantaged individuals through tax-exempt organizations selected by NOAA Fisheries to be authorized distributors. This rule was applicable only until December 31, 2000, in order for management agencies to be able to assess the program prior to determining whether or not to continue it under a future regulatory amendment. The intended effect of this action was to reduce the amount of regulatory discards in the groundfish fisheries by processing dead halibut for human consumption.

Federal Register

Supporting Materials

Last updated by Alaska Regional Office on 06/14/2022

Electronic Monitoring North Pacific Observer Program Alaska IFQ - Halibut and Sablefish Alaska Recordkeeping and Reporting Alaska Halibut Bycatch Bycatch Alaska Prohibited Species Donation Program