Upcoming Scoping Meetings

Mackerel Amendments
The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council has scheduled scoping meetings around the Gulf coast to discuss a proposed generic amendment addressing dealer permits and electronic logbook reporting, as well as two amendments to the Mackerel Fishery Management Plan.

The meetings schedule is as follows:
Monday, March 19, 2012 Tuesday, March 20, 2012
Hilton Galveston Four Points by Sheraton
5400 Seawall Boulevard 940 Beach Boulevard
Galveston Island, Texas Biloxi, Mississippi
(409) 744-5000 (228) 546-3100

Wednesday, March 21, 2012 Wednesday, March 21, 2012
Plantation Suites Courtyard Marriott
1909 Highway 361 1000 West I-65 Service Road South
Port Aransas, Texas Mobile, Alabama
(361) 749-3866 (251) 344-5200

Thursday, March 22, 2012 Monday, March 26, 2012
Courtyard Marriott Harvey Government Center
100 Grand Boulevard 1200 Truman Avenue
Destin, Florida Key West, Florida
(850) 650-7411 (305) 295-5000

Wednesday, March 28, 2012 Monday, April 2, 2012
Hyatt Place Crowne Plaza New Orleans Airport
2600 Champion Ring Road 2829 Williams Boulevard
Fort Myers, Florida Kenner, Louisiana
(239) 418-1844 (504) 467-5611

Tuesday, April 3, 2012
Wildlife & Fisheries Lab
195 Ludwig Lane
Grand Isle, Louisiana
(985) 787-2163

All meetings will begin at 6pm and conclude at the end of public testimony, but no later than 9pm.

The proposed generic amendment considers changes to the current requirements for dealer permits and the potential for electronic reporting requirements.

Mackerel Amendment 19 considers limits or prohibition on the sale of king mackerel, Spanish mackerel, and cobia that are caught under a bag limit. It also looks at changes to regulations regarding maintaining and renewing commercial fishing permits and adding a commercial permit requirement to sell cobia. Mackerel Amendment 20 considers potential changes to the existing commercial boundaries and zones and associated quotas and trip limits, along with a possible allowance for transit through closed fishing zones. Some of these proposed changes were recommended by participants in the fishery to simplify current regulations and make the fishery more efficient.

Copies of the scoping materials can be obtained by calling 813-348-1630. Materials will also be posted on the Council website at http://gulfcouncil.org/fishery_management_plans/scoping-thru-implementation.php.

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