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NOAA Fisheries Proposes Revised Commercial Black Sea Bass Quotas for 2017-2018

NOAA Fisheries proposes revised black sea bass quotas for the 2017 fishing year and projected specifications for 2018. Based on updated information on the status of the stock, we are proposing a 53 percent increase in the 2017 commercial quota established in 2015.

We also propose to remove the accountability measure in the commercial sector that was initially implemented at the start of the fishing year to account for perceived 2015 overages. Updated scientific information regarding the black sea bass stock indicates that higher catch limits should be implemented to obtain optimum yield, and that the accountability measure is no longer necessary or appropriate. 

We work in partnership with the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council and the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, and use the best available scientific information to develop management measures that prevent overfishing while obtaining optimum yield from black sea bass stocks.

Read the proposed rule as published today in the Federal Register. Supporting documents for this rule are available on our website.

Comments on this rule must be received by 5 pm on May 1, 2017.

To submit comments, please use the Federal e-rulemaking portal, or send comments by regular mail to John Bullard, Regional Administrator, National Marine Fisheries Service, 55 Great Republic Drive, Gloucester, MA, 01930. Please mark the outside of the envelope, "Comments on the Proposed Rule for Revised Black Sea Bass Specifications."

Questions? Contact Jennifer Goebel at 978-281-9175 or