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Northeast Multispecies Common Pool Vessels; Gulf of Maine Cod Trip Limit Increase for Small Vessel Category Vessels

Sustainable  Fisheries Division
(978) 281 –9315
March 22, 2017

Effective Date: March 22, 2017, through April 30, 2017

The small vessel category trip limit of Gulf of Maine (GOM) cod is increased to 100 lb per trip for the remainder of the 2016 fishing year.  On March 16, 2017, we increased the common pool GOM cod and haddock trip limits.  However, we incorrectly stated that the small vessel category trip limit of GOM cod was unchanged.  This increase corrects that error.

Vessels in the small vessel category are still held to the combined 300-lb trip limit for cod, haddock, and yellowtail flounder. 

Common pool groundfish vessels that have crossed the Vessel Monitoring System demarcation line prior to March 22, 2017, may land the new trip limit for that trip.

Reminder:  The possession of Georges Bank cod by any common pool vessel is prohibited for the remainder of the 2016 fishing year.  This includes cod caught in Georges Bank and Southern New England. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is this action being taken?

On March 16, 2017, we increased the GOM cod and haddock trip limit.  This action incorrectly excluded the GOM cod trip limit for the small vessel category.  We are increasing the trip limit for these vessels to correct this mistake and to provide additional fishing opportunities for common pool vessels. 

Is there a chance that the trip limit will go back down?

We will continue to monitor common pool catch relative to quotas, and could further adjust possession and trip limits if necessary to prevent an overage.  Up-to-date quota monitoring reports can be found on the internet at:

What happens if the annual quota is exceeded?

If the fishing year 2016 quota is exceeded for any stock, the amount of the overage will be deducted from the common pool’s quota next year (i.e., fishing year 2017).  We will announce any overage adjustments as close to May 1, 2017, as possible.

For small entity compliance guides, this bulletin complies with section 212 of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement and Fairness Act of 1996.  This notice is authorized by the Regional Administrator of the National Marine Fisheries Service, Greater Atlantic Region.