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2014 Regional Fishery Council Appointments

U.S. Commerce Department Announces 

2014 Regional Fishery Council Appointments

June 26, 2014  -- The following was released by NOAA:

The U.S. Commerce Department today announced the appointment of 22 new and returning members to the eight regional fishery management councils that partner with NOAA's Fisheries Service to manage ocean fish stocks. The new and reappointed council members begin their three-year terms on August 11.

The councils were established by the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act to prepare fishery management plans for marine fish stocks in their regions. NOAA's Fisheries Service works closely with the councils as plans are developed, and then reviews, approves, and implements the fishery management plans. Council members represent diverse groups, including commercial and recreational fishing industries, environmental organizations and academia, and they carry out the act's requirements to end overfishing, rebuild fish stocks, and manage them sustainably.

"All of us at NOAA Fisheries are eager to start working with our new council members, and to continue the work we've been doing with returning members," said Eileen Sobeck, assistant NOAA administrator for fisheries. "The partnerships we have with the councils are more important than ever in order to continue the positive momentum we've been making with federally managed species in recent years."

Each year, approximately one-third of the total 72 appointed members to the eight regional councils are appointed by the Secretary of Commerce. The Secretary selects members from nominations submitted by the governors of fishing states, territories and tribal governments.

Council members are appointed to both obligatory (state-specific) and at-large (regional) seats. Council members serve a three-year term and can be reappointed to serve three consecutive terms.Asterisks preceding a member's name indicate a reappointment. 

New England Council

The New England Council includes members from Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island. The appointees for 2014 will fill four at-large seats.

At-large seats:

*Thomas D. Dempsey (Massachusetts)

Elizabeth "Libby" M. P. Etrie (Massachusetts)

*Peter T. Kendall (New Hampshire)

*Mary Beth Nickell-Tooley (Maine)

 

Mid-Atlantic Council

The Mid-Atlantic Council includes members from the states of Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Virginia. The appointees for 2014 will fill obligatory seats for Maryland, North Carolina, New York, and Pennsylvania and one at-large seat.

 

Obligatory seats:

*G.(George) W. Elliott (Pennsylvania)

*Francis "Dewey" Hemilright, Jr. (North Carolina)

*Howard J. King, III (Maryland)

*John G. McMurray (New York)

 

At-large seat:

*Laurie A. Nolan (New York)

 

South Atlantic Council

The South Atlantic Council includes members from Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina. The appointees for 2014 will fill two at-large seats.

 

At-large seats:

William "Chester" Brewer, Jr. (Florida)

Mark E. Brown (South Carolina)

 

Caribbean Council

The Caribbean Council includes members from Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The appointee for 2014 will fill an obligatory seat for Puerto Rico.

 

Obligatory seat:

Marcos R. Hanke (Puerto Rico)

 

Gulf Council

The Gulf Council includes members from Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas. The appointees for 2014 will fill three at-large seats.

 

At-large seats:

*Pamela J. Dana (Florida)

Gregory W. Stunz (Texas)

David A. Walker (Alabama)

 

Pacific Council

The Pacific Council includes members from California, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington. The appointees for 2014 will fill an obligatory seat for Washington and one at-large seat.

 

Obligatory seat:

*Richard "Rich" H. Lincoln (Washington)

 

At-large seat:

*Jeffrey "Jeff" N. Feldner (Oregon)

 

North Pacific Council

The North Pacific Council includes members from Alaska and Washington. The appointees for 2014 will fill an obligatory seat for Alaska and an obligatory seat for Washington.

 

Obligatory seats:

*John J. Henderschedt (Washington)

Simon Kinneen (Alaska)

 

Western Pacific Council

The Western Pacific Council includes members from American Samoa, Guam, Hawaii, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. The appointees for 2014 will fill an obligatory seat for Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands and two at-large seats.

 

Obligatory seat:

John E. Gourley (Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands)

At-large seats:

*Edwin "Ed" A. Ebisui, Jr. (Hawaii)

*Frederick M. Rice (Hawaii)

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Info Alerts

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Rep. Steve Southerland, II took a leading role today in the House Natural Resources Committee’s approval of legislation reauthorizing the Magnuson-Stevens Act, the primary law governing America’s fisheries. The committee approved on a bipartisan basis five Southerland amendments injecting common sense into fishery data collection and fishery disaster declarations.

“Today’s votes in committee were the first step in ensuring our fishermen have a voice in establishing any new catch share programs, while addressing inflexibility in rebuilding plans and moving us closer to a data collection solution,” said Southerland. “At a time when our coastal communities are suffering due to flawed fishery management based on inadequate science, I am pleased this bill puts us on a path to a more common sense approach that addresses the problems we currently face in the Gulf of Mexico. I look forward to ensuring our fishermen’s interests are addressed as I work with members of both parties to pass a Magnuson-Stevens Act reauthorization in the House this year.”

The Southerland provisions approved by the committee would:

• Direct the U.S. Secretary of Commerce to issue a fishery disaster determination within 90 days of receiving a request;

• Ensure that the tens of thousands of red snapper killed by rig removal explosions, also known as “Idle Iron,” are not counted against the annual catch limit for Gulf fishermen;

• Ensure that red snapper confiscated from illegal foreign poachers are not counted against the total allowable catch for American fishermen;

• Prohibit the harvest rights of fish allocated for public consumption to be traded away from the commercial sector by sale or lease.

Permalink: http://southerland.house.gov/index.cfm/2014/5/southerland-takes-leading-role-in-fisheries-reauthorization


NEWS

Nominations sought for open positions on the Marine Fisheries Advisory Committee. Nominations accepted through July 7, 2014.

(May 23, 2014)  The Marine Fisheries Advisory Committee (MAFAC) advises the Secretary of Commerce on all living marine resource matters that are the responsibility of the Department of Commerce.  The Committee draws on its members’ expertise and other sources to evaluate and make recommendations to the Secretary and NOAA on the development and implementation of Department regulations, policies, and programs critical to the mission and goals of the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS).  

MAFAC members represent a wide spectrum of fisheries, protected resources, and marine habitat interests; environmental, academic, tribal, consumer, and other related national interests.  Nominees should possess demonstrable expertise in a field related to the management of living marine resources and be able to fulfill the time commitments required for two annual meetings and between-meeting subcommittee work.  Individuals serve for a term of three years for no more than two consecutive terms, if re-appointed. 

The committee functions solely as an advisory body (complying fully with the Federal Advisory Committee Act) who reports to the Secretary.

Full nomination instructions and guidelines are detailed in the Federal Register notice

For more information please contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


MAFAC current schedule of known in-person outreach events, CLICK HERE   This will be updated as new events are added or specific dates are identified.  If there is a meeting near you, PLEASE do your best to attend, and have folks from your community attend.

In addition to the in-person events list review the quick fact sheet. CLICK HERE  that you should feel free to share, and last but not least, the website! http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/sfa/management/recreational/policy/index.html MAFAC will be accepting online comment soon, but for now the website is the place to find everything you may want to know about their process, including info for a few webinars.


NOPC Update
I. Mid-Atlantic RPB Approves Ocean Planning Framework, Charts Next Moves
The
 Mid-Atlantic Regional Planning Body (RPB) convened in Baltimore, MD last week for its second in-person meeting
 
The RPB approved a
 regional ocean planning framework, talked about next steps to carry out the goals and objectives identified in the approved framework, received briefings on and discussed energy, habitat, and navigation-related activities in the Mid-Atlantic, and heard public comments (see summaries below, and meeting presentations are available here).  The RPB noted that some things not reflected in the approved framework could still be incorporated going forward.

II. NOAA Regulations for New Sanctuary Nomination Process Expected In June
The
 Unified Agenda released by the White House Office of Management and Budgetlast week projects that NOAA will take final action in June to re-establish the national marine sanctuary nomination process.

III. Infrastructure Bill Includes Resiliency Provision, Excludes Ocean Endowment
Following six months of congressional negotiations that culminated with the
announcement of a conference agreement earlier this month, the U.S. House andSenate last week passed the Water Resources Reform and Development Act of 2014.

IV. NOAA Seeks To Fill Vacancies On 8 Nat’l. Marine Sanctuary Advisory Councils
NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries earlier this month
 announced that it is seeking applications for vacancies on 8 national marine sanctuary advisory councils.

V. NOAA Seeks Marine Fisheries Advisory Committee Applications 
NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) last week
 announced that it is seeking applications to fill upcoming vacancies on the Marine Fisheries Advisory Committee (MAFAC) beginning in fall 2014.  Nominations are due by Monday, July 7, 2014
Please read the complete NOPC Update by Clicking Here

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Cancellation of CVC Policy Letter 15-05: Requirements for Out-of-Water Survival Craft

On February 8, 2016, the President signed H.R. Bill 4188, the “Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2015” into law. In it, section 301 amended the out-of-water survival craft requirements in Title 46 United States Code (U.S.C.) §3104, limiting its applicability. This Marine Safety Information Bulletin (MSIB) notifies the public of these changes and hereby cancels the now obsolete CVC Policy Letter 15-05, which concerned previous out-of-water survival craft requirements.

Section 301 of the 2015 Coast Guard Authorization Act (CGAA) had two significant effects on the applicability of out-of-water survival craft. First, it amended 46 U.S.C. §3104, paragraph (a), requiring that only “passenger vessels” that operate in cold waters and are built or undergo a major conversion after January 1, 2016 shall be equipped with out-of-water survival craft. "Passenger vessel" is defined in 46 U.S.C. §2101(22) as a vessel of at least 100 gross tons (among other criteria). Currently, Title 46 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), Subchapter H - Passenger Vessels and 46 CFR, Subchapter W - Lifesaving Appliances and Arrangements dictates the survival craft requirements for passenger vessels of at least 100 gross tons. The lowest category of survival craft authorized in Subchapter W is the Inflatable Buoyant Apparatus (IBAs), with which, no part of an individual is immersed in water. Therefore, passenger vessels properly in compliance with Subchapters H and W already meet the out-of-water survival craft requirements directed in the amended 46 U.S.C. §3104.

Second, the 2015 CGAA removed the language in the previous amendment of 46 U.S.C. §3104 that restricted the Coast Guard from approving any in-water survival craft (e.g., life floats and buoyant apparatus) for the purposes of all of Part B of Title 46 U.S.C. Therefore, because the other inspected vessels (small passenger vessels, offshore supply vessels, sailing school vessels, and cargo vessels as mentioned in the CVC Policy Letter 15-05) were not specifically named in the 2015 CGAA, they may continue to use their existing in-water survival craft beyond February 26, 2016. Furthermore, all fixed manned offshore platforms may continue to use in-water survival craft beyond February 26, 2016, as well. The Coast Guard will be issuing separate correspondence to survival craft manufactures re-authorizing or extending their type approval certificates for in-water survival craft. Lastly, a separate information bulletin will be issued explaining the survival craft requirements specifically for uninspected commercial fishing vessels.

Again, as a result of the 2015 CGAA, CVC Policy Letter 15-05 is rendered obsolete and the Coast Guard is cancelling it effective immediately. The Coast Guard stands ready to answer the questions of vessel and offshore platform owners and operators regarding their specific survival craft requirements.

Questions concerning this matter may be directed to the Office of Commercial Vessel Compliance, Commandant (CG-CVC) at 202-372-1220, or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Questions specifically concerning survival craft type approvals should be directed to the Office of Design and Engineering Standards, Commandant (CG-ENG) at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 

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USCG Notices 02-2016...Maps/Strainers

  Electronic Charts and Publication NVIC 01-16

 

News Release

February 08, 2016

U.S. Coast Guard Headquarters

Contact: Headquarters Public Affairs

Office: (202) 372-4630

US Coast Guard approves official electronic charts

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Coast Guard published guidance Feb. 5 that allows mariners to use electronic charts and publications instead of paper charts, maps and publications.

The Navigation and Vessel Inspection Circular, NVIC 01-16 establishes uniform guidance on what is now considered equivalent to chart and publication carriage requirements.

Combining the suite of electronic charts from the U.S. hydrographic authorities and the Electronic Charting System (ECS) standards published this past summer by the Radio Technical Commission for Maritime Services, the Coast Guard believes official electronic charts provide mariners with a substitute for the traditional official paper charts. 

“After consultation with our Navigation Safety Advisory Committee, the Coast Guard will allow mariners to use official electronic charts instead of paper charts, if they choose to do so. With real-time voyage planning and monitoring information at their fingertips, mariners will no longer have the burden of maintaining a full portfolio of paper charts,” said Capt. Scott J. Smith, the chief of the U.S. Coast Guard’s Office of Navigation Systems.

The new guidance applies to vessels subject to U.S. chart, or map, and publication carriage requirements codified in Titles 33 and 46 CFR and provides a voluntary alternative means to comply with those requirements.

“Mariners have been requesting the recognition of this capability for some time,” said Smith.  “When you combine the new expanded Automatic Identification System carriage requirement and the capability that an ECS provides, it should provide a platform to move American waterways into the 21st century.”

This technology will also allow mariners to take advantage of information and data to enhance situational awareness during voyage planning and while underway.

“Together, with our industry and international partners, we are leveraging modern technology to contribute to the safety, security and prosperity of our nation,” said Smith.

 View NVIC 01-16 at: http://www.uscg.mil/hq/cg5/nvic/pdf/2016/NVIC_01-16_electronic_charts_and_publications.pdf

 

 

Nonmetallic Sea Strainer Use on Small Passenger Vessels

The US Coast Guard issued a policy letter concerning sea strainers constructed of nonmetallic materials for use on small passenger vessels.

Sea strainers containing nonmetallic components have been installed on small passenger vessels for several decades without incident. However, the regulations were amended to require vital piping systems to be made of a ferrous material on board ”new” small passenger vessels. 

Marine inspectors continue to discover nonmetallic sea strainers on ”new” small passenger vessels. These strainers are typically found in raw water cooling systems but may also be installed within other systems. The notion that they represent a potential ”weak link” in a piping system due to the possibility of failure from mechanical or fire damage, which would result in the loss of the affected vital system and potentially result in uncontrollable flooding, simply hasn’t materialized for small passenger vessels. In fact, vessel operators have emphasized that these types of strainers have been successfully used for many years without the occurrence of significant mechanical failures, even when vessels had major fires.

To that end, a search of the MISLE database confirms a lack of historical casualty incidents related to these types of installed strainers. Furthermore, there are benefits to the use of nonmetallic or acrylic sea strainers; they provide improved safety by serving as a sight glass to check for adequate cooling water flow which in turn help prevent main engine overheating and propulsion casualties while underway.

Click HERE to read the USCG’s policy letter.

 

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Availability of Seats for National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Councils

National Interest

Availability of Seats for National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Councils

AGENCY: Office of National Marine Sanctuaries (ONMS), National Ocean Service (NOS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Department of Commerce (DOC).

ACTION: Notice and request for applications.

SUMMARY: ONMS is seeking applications for vacant seats for five of its 13 national marine sanctuary advisory councils (advisory councils). Vacant seats, including positions (i.e., primary member and alternate), for each of the advisory councils are listed in this notice under SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION. Applicants are chosen based upon their particular expertise and experience in relation to the seat for which they are applying; community and professional affiliations; views regarding the protection and management of marine or Great Lake resources; and possibly the length of residence in the area affected by the sanctuary. Applicants who are chosen as members or alternates should expect to serve two or three year terms, pursuant to the charter of the specific national marine sanctuary advisory council.

DATES: Applications are due by February 29, 2016.
For more info view the entire notice at: https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2016-02-02/html/2016-01976.htm

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U.S. Recreational Commissioner to ICCAT: NACO Support for Capt. Ray Bogan

On behalf of our members NACO wishes to provide our full support to Raymond D. Bogan to be appointed as the next U.S. Recreational Commissioner to ICCAT.  Ray's experience and expertise on national and international fishery issues is unsurpassed.  Along with his extensive background in fishery management he is the best candidate qualified and able to represent the recreational fishing community in the ICCAT arena.

To view the entire letter of support click here

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NMFS has published individual fishing quota (IFQ)

NMFS has published individual fishing quota (IFQ) standard prices and fee percentage for the IFQ cost recovery program in the halibut and sablefish fisheries of the North Pacific. In fisheries such as halibut in AK 

and red snapper in the Gulf where efforts are underway to move to recreational IFQ's, it is necessary to understand the potential costs that recreational charter captains and others will experience if these programs go to IFQ. 

Please click here to view the entire federal register notice including pricing break downs. 

If you have any questions regarding this notice and how it may affect you or your fishery, please feel free to send in your questions to the NACo office at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we will submit them to the NACO fisheries committee for responses. 

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2013 Plan for Periodic Review of Regulations

The Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) requires that the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) periodically review existing regulations that have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities, such as small businesses, small organizations, and small governmental jurisdictions. This plan describes how NMFS will perform this review and describes the regulations that are being proposed for review during the current review-cycle.

Written comments must be received by NMFS by July 22, 2013.

 

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Exploring the Alternative Biofuel Isobutanol

Last week, the National Marine Manufacturers Assn. (NMMA) kicked off a third summer season of alternative biofuel testing in an effort to further advance marine engine technology and find an alternative to fuel containing more than 10 percent ethanol as a result of its damaging effects on marine engines. 

The tests are funded by the Department of Energy which released a 2011 report on engines using E15 revealing performance issues like stalling, corrosion leading to oil or fuel leaks, increased emissions and damaged valves, rubber fuel lines and gaskets. These results reinforced the recreational boating industry's concern that E15 is not a suitable fuel for boat engines.

 

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2013 Vessel General Permit – Major Changes and Challenges

Currently this only affects vessels greater than 79' and/or carry more than 150 passengers or 50 or more passengers on overnight trips

On March 28, 2013, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued the 2013 Vessel General Permit (2013 VGP) to regulate discharges incidental to the normal operation of commercial vessels. As the 2013 VGP becomes effective on 19th December 2013, about 12,500 foreign flagged vessels are expected to be subject to VGP requirements and be required to obtain authorization under this new permit. New ships (ships built after December 19, 2013) will be obliged to comply with various new requirements e.g. the monitoring of treated bilge water and grey water and ballast water treatment.

The EPA has added training as a new requirement of the 2013 VGP, requiring vessel operators to outline their training plans to ensure that all key vessel personnel sufficiently understand the nature of the eligible discharges and the terms of the permit, and are properly trained to respond to fuel spills and operate and maintain the pollution prevention equipment of their vessels.

 

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