Pacific Halibut Sport Fishing by Guided Sport Charter Vessels in Alaska - Federal Register Rules and Notices
NOAA Fisheries proposes regulations that would require Charter Halibut Permits (CHPs) to be registered annually with NOAA Fisheries. In 2010, NOAA Fisheries implemented a Charter Halibut Limited Access Program that issued a limited number of CHPs to persons who operate in the guided sport (charter) halibut fishery on the waters of International Pacific Halibut Commission Regulatory Areas 2C and 3A. The proposed annual registration of CHPs is intended to improve the enforcement of CHP transfer limitations and ownership caps, as well as provide additional information to NOAA Fisheries and the North Pacific Fishery Management Council on any changes in CHP ownership and participation.
The harvest of halibut in Alaska occurs in three fisheries—the commercial, sport, and subsistence fisheries. The commercial halibut fishery is managed under the IFQ Program. The sport fishery includes guided and unguided anglers. Guided anglers are commonly called “charter” anglers because they fish from chartered vessels. Throughout this preamble, the term “charter fishery” is used to refer to the fishery prosecuted by guided anglers. The subsistence fishery provides an opportunity for rural residents and members of an Alaska Native tribe to retain halibut for personal use or customary trade.
The following sections of the preamble summarize charter fishery management. Sections 3.1 and 3.2 of the RIR prepared for this action provides additional detail on charter halibut management programs that have been implemented in Areas 2C and 3A.