The commercial hook-and-line component for golden tilefish in federal waters of the South Atlantic will close at 12:01 a.m., local time, on July 23, 2020.
WHY THIS CLOSURE IS HAPPENING:
The 2020 commercial catch limit for the golden tilefish hook-and-line component is 82,935 pounds gutted weight. Commercial landings are projected to reach the commercial catch limit and harvest must close to prevent the catch limit from being exceeded.
DURING AND AFTER THE CLOSURE:
- The closure prohibitions for the commercial hook-and-line component apply in both state and federal waters for vessels that have a federal commercial South Atlantic Snapper-Grouper permit.
- The South Atlantic golden tilefish commercial longline component already closed on March 23, 2020, for the remainder of the fishing year. Therefore, all commercial harvest and sale of South Atlantic golden tilefish will be prohibited effective at 12:01 a.m., local time, July 23, 2020. Harvest or possession is limited to the golden tilefish recreational bag and possession limits when the recreational sector is open, without regard to where the golden tilefish was harvested (i.e. in state or federal waters).
- Golden tilefish bag and possession limits and the prohibition on sale/purchase apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or federal waters.
- The prohibitions on harvest or possession and sale or purchase during the closure do not apply to fish that were harvested, landed ashore, and sold prior to 12:01 a.m., local time, on July 23, 2020, and were held in cold storage by a dealer or processor.
- The 2020 fishing season for golden tilefish commercial hook-and-line component in the South Atlantic will open on January 1, 2021, with a commercial catch limit of 82,935 pounds gutted weight.
This bulletin provides only a summary of the existing regulations. The complete list of regulations can be found in the Federal Register or at https://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-idx?SID=383bc195ccbeab4fd6bec1c24905df34&node=sp50.12.622.i&rgn=div6.
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