At its September 2020 meeting, the Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) recommended National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) implement an emergency action to extend the Limited Entry Fixed Gear (LEFG) sablefish primary (tier) fishery through December 31. NMFS is currently evaluating the Council’s recommendation. If approved, this action would add an additional “major” cumulative limit period (period 6) from November 1 through December 31, 2020. This action would also temporarily raise the limit on annual permit transfers for LEFG sablefish-endorsed permits to two different vessels for 2020. Fishery participants interested in completing a permit transfer before period 6 must submit a permit transfer request by close of business (COB) October 30 for the transfer to be effective by the start of the new cumulative limit period.
To submit a permit transfer request:
- Download the Change of Vessel Registration and/or Permit Owner Application from our website
- Complete the form and email it and any supplemental documents to the Fisheries Permits Office at: WCR-Permits@noaa.gov
- Forms may be submitted at any time up to close of business on October 30th and post-dated to the beginning of period 6. We encourage permit holders to submit requests early to ensure they can be processed in the desired timeframe.
- Need help? Call or email us at (206)526-4353 or WCR-Permits@noaa.gov.
NMFS is providing additional information through this notice to aid the fleet in planning for this emergency action. This action was recommended by members of industry and Council advisory bodies to provide relief to primary fishery participants impacted by operational delays related to the on-going pandemic. NMFS is in the process of reviewing the Council’s request, and, if approved, this action would change the primary fishery season closing date from October 31 to December 31. More information on this emergency action can be found through the Council webpage and September 2020 decision document.
NMFS anticipates the decision on approval of this emergency action would occur near the end of October; we will provide additional information when it is available.