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Request for Comments: Proposed Rule for a Framework Action to Modify Vermilion Snapper Catch Levels in the Gulf of Mexico

December 06, 2022

FB22-071: Gulf of Mexico Fishery Bulletin. For more information, contact: Rich Malinowski, (727) 824-5305; Rich.Malinowski@noaa.gov.

Key Message:

NOAA Fisheries requests your comments on a Proposed Rule for a framework action under the Fishery Management Plan for the Reef Fish Resources of the Gulf of Mexico to modify catch levels of vermilion snapper.  These changes are based on the results of the most recent stock assessment and the recommendations of the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council’s Scientific and Statistical Committee and Reef Fish Advisory Panel. 

The stock assessment used data from the Marine Recreational Information Program Fishing Effort Survey, which replaced the Marine Recreational Information Program Coastal Household Telephone Survey.  Had data from the Fishing Effort Survey been available when the prior stock assessment was completed, the overfishing limit would have been almost double the current overfishing limit of 3,490,000 pounds whole weight.


Comments are due by January 5, 2023


Summary Of Proposed Changes:

The current and proposed overfishing limit (OFL), acceptable biological catch (ABC), and stock annual catch limit (ACL) are shown below in pounds whole weight. 

Current Harvest Levels









Proposed Harvest Levels









At its January 2022 meeting, the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council unanimously approved the framework action.  The Proposed Rule would revise the regulations for the annual catch limit specified in the framework action.  


How To Comment On The Proposed Rule:

The comment period is open now through January 5, 2023.  You may submit comments by electronic submission or by postal mail.  Comments sent by any other method (such as e-mail), to any other address or individual, or received after the end of the comment period, may not be considered by NOAA Fisheries.


Formal Federal Register Name/Number: 87 FR 74588, published December 6, 2022.

 Electronic Submissions: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal. 

1. Go to https://www.regulations.gov/document/NOAA_FRDOC_0001-6428

2. Click the "Comment" icon, complete the required fields.

3. Enter or attach your comments.

Mail: Submit written comments to Rich Malinowski, Southeast Regional Office, NMFS, 263 13th Avenue South, St. Petersburg, FL 33701.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


What are the proposed changes?

  • The framework action and Proposed Rule would increase the vermilion snapper OFL from 3,490,000 pounds whole weight to 8,600,000 pounds whole weight, the ABC from 3,110,000 pounds whole weight to 7,270,000 pounds whole weight, and the ACL from 3,110,000 pounds whole weight to 5,452,500 pounds whole weight.


 What is the new data collection method for the Marine Recreational Information Program?

  • Launched in 2015, the Marine Recreational Information Program-Fishing Effort Survey replaced the Marine Recreational Information Program-Coastal Household Telephone Survey in 2018.  Both survey methods collect data needed to estimate marine recreational fishing effort (number of fishing trips) by shore and private/rental boat anglers on the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico coasts.  The Coastal Household Telephone Survey used random-digit dialing of homes in coastal counties to contact fishermen.  The new mail-based Fishing Effort Survey uses fishing license and registration information as one way to identify and contact fishermen (supplemented with data from the U.S. Postal Service).  NOAA Fisheries conducted side-by-side testing of Coastal Household Telephone Survey and Fishing Effort Survey from 2015 to 2017 to develop a calibration model for transitioning between the two data currencies.  Landings estimates for vermilion snapper derived from the Fishing Effort Survey are greater than those from the Coastal Household Telephone Survey.


Where can I find more information on Vermilion Snapper Framework Action?

  • Contact NOAA Fisheries, Southeast Regional Office

     By Mail: Rich Malinowski

     NOAA Fisheries, Southeast Regional Office

     Sustainable Fisheries Division

     263 13th Avenue South

     St. Petersburg, Florida 33701-5505

     By FAX: (727) 824-5308

     By Phone: (727) 824-5305


NOAA's Text Message Alert Program allows you to receive important fishery related alerts via text message (SMS).  Standard message & data rates may apply.  You may opt-out at any time.


Text alerts you may receive include:

  • Immediate fishery openings and closures
  • Any significant changes to fishing regulations that happen quickly


Sign up for one or more of the following groups:

  • Gulf of Mexico Recreational Fisheries Related Alerts
    • Text GULFRECFISH to 888777
  • Gulf of Mexico Commercial Fisheries Related Alerts
    • Text GULFCOMMFISH to 888777
  • South Atlantic Recreational Fisheries Related Alerts
    • Text SATLRECFISH to 888777
  • South Atlantic Commercial Fisheries Related Alerts
    • Text SATLCOMMFISH to 888777
  • Caribbean Fisheries Related Alerts
    • Text CARIBFISH to 888777


Quick Glance Contact List for the NOAA Fisheries Southeast Regional Office

Permits Mailbox: The Permits Office in St. Petersburg, Florida now has a Permits mailbox in the front lobby (263 13th Ave. South, St. Petersburg, Florida 33701).  You can now drop off original permits for permit transfers.  Envelopes with information labels will be provided so that your documents can be attached to the correct application.  The mailbox will be checked daily.  For more information, contact the Permits Office at 877-376-4877.


Other contacts:

Media: Allison Garrett, 727-551-5750

Last updated by Southeast Regional Office on December 06, 2022