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Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery: Limited Access General Category (LAGC) Scallop Vessels; Updated Allocations for the Remainder of the 2017 Fishing Year and Other New Measures

Contact:
Sustainable  Fisheries Division
(978) 281 –9315
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
March 22, 2017

Effective Date: March 23, 2017 at  4:15 p.m.

The following information describes new measures implementing Framework 28 and a summary of how they may affect your fishing plans and activities for the remainder of the 2017 fishing year.  We have also included reminders of some current requirements.  Please read through each section carefully, and distribute this letter to your vessel operators.  This summary is not a substitute for the actual regulations, and we encourage you to review the full text of the regulations, available at http://www.greateratlantic.fisheries.noaa.gov.

We have posted additional information on our website at:  http://www.greateratlantic.fisheries.noaa.gov/sustainable/species/scallop/.

REMINDER: The 2017 fishing year will be 13 months (March 1, 2017-March 31, 2018).  The 2018 fishing year will start on April 1, 2018.

Final 2017 Allocations for all LAGC vessels

Updated Fishing Year 2017 Individual Fishing Quota (IFQ) Allocations: The table below includes the LAGC fleet IFQ allocations effective March 23, 2017, through the remainder of fishing year 2017 (through March 31,2018).  We will send you a separate letter that specifies your vessel’s updated 2017 IFQ, which we set based on the following allocations.

        LAGC Fleet Allocations

LAGC IFQ only

1,026 mt (2,261,943 lb)

LAGC IFQ with limited access scallop permit

103 mt (227,076 lb)

IFQ Overage Payback (accountability measure): Please remember that it is unlawful to exceed your IFQ allocation at any point in the year.  You can balance an overage within a fishing year through temporary IFQ leases and/or permanent allocation transfers completed before the applicable fishing year ends.  We will deduct any overages that remain at the end of the fishing year from the following year’s IFQ allocation on a pound-for-pound basis.

2017 Access Area Closures:

  • Closed Area I and Closed Area II Access Areas are closed to LAGC IFQ vessels for fishing year 2017.

Fishing Year 2017 Access Area Allocations

  • The Mid-Atlantic Access Area (MAAA) and the Nantucket Lightship Access Area (NLS) are open to scallop fishing in fishing year 2017.  In addition, the Elephant Trunk Closed Area will open and be renamed the Elephant Trunk Flex Access Area (ETFA).  (see attached map and coordinates)
  • PROHIBITION: Vessels are prohibited from transiting the ETFA when on a declared scallop trip, unless on an ETFA declaration.
  • The MAAA and NLS will be open for the remainder of the 2017 fishing year (i.e., there are no seasonal closures).
  • Seasonal Closure: ETFA will be closed from July 1 through September 30.

Table 1. LAGC IFQ Trip Allocations for Scallop Access Areas.

Access Area

2017

Seasonal Closure

NLS

837

None

MAAA

697

None

ETFA

697

July 1 – September 30

Total

 2,231

LAGC Northern Gulf of Maine (NGOM) Management Area Scallop Possession Limit and Total Allowable Catch (TAC): 

Vessels issued an LAGC NGOM scallop permit and IFQ vessels fishing in the NGOM are restricted to 200 lb shucked or 25 U.S. bu in-shell scallops per trip. 

Framework 28 implements a 95,000-lb annual NGOM TAC for fishing years 2017 and 2018.  During the 2017 fishing year there was a 21,629-lb overage of the NGOM TAC.  This triggers a pound-for-pound deduction in 2017 to account for the overage.  Therefore, the 2017 NGOM TAC is 73,371 lb to account for the overage.

Update on NGOM TAC:

The Regional Administrator determined that we reached the NGOM TAC on March 23, 2017.  This area will be closed to all Federal scallop fishing for the remainder of fishing year 2017.

LAGC Incidental Scallop Target TAC:

The incidental scallop target TAC for fishing year 2017 is 50,000 lb.  Vessels issued an LAGC Incidental Catch scallop permit may only land up to 40 lb shucked or 5 U.S. bu of in-shell scallops per trip.

Fishing Year 2017 Groundfish Annual Catch Limits (ACL) in the Scallop Fishery:

Stock

Scallop sub-ACL

Georges Bank Yellowtail Flounder

32 mt (70,548 lb)

SNE/MA Yellowtail Flounder

34 mt (74,957 lb)

Southern Windowpane Flounder

209 mt (460,766 lb)

Northern Windowpane Flounder

38 mt (83,776 lb)

These limits are for both the LAGC fleet and limited access fleet combined.  For more information about yellowtail flounder and windowpane flounder catch limits in the scallop fishery, go to http://www.greateratlantic.fisheries.noaa.gov/regs/info.html

Important LAGC Program Reminders

Observer Set-Aside Compensation:  LAGC IFQ vessel owners must call in weekly to the NMFS’s Northeast Fisheries Observer Program (see attachment for call-in instructions) to report scallop IFQ trips you expect to take during the week.  Vessel operators must call by Thursday if they expect to make any open area (or access area) trips from Sunday through Saturday of the following week.  Observer service providers should charge dock-to-dock, where a “day” is considered a 24-hr period and portions of other days should be pro-rated at an hourly charge.

If NMFS selects your IFQ vessel for an open area or access area observed trip, you will receive observer compensation credit of 200 lb per trip if the observer set-aside has not been fully harvested.  You can fish those additional pounds on the observed IFQ trip above the regular possession limit or on a subsequent trip that fishing year (but you must harvest these pounds within the current possession limit if you fish them on a future trip).

NMFS monitors the compensation rates and the observer set-aside use in each area very closely throughout the year.  If information suggests that a different rate is necessary to account for unexpected fishery conditions, NMFS will change the compensation rate as appropriate.

LAGC Calendar Day Landing Restriction:  LAGC vessels may not land scallops more than once per calendar day.  For example, an LAGC vessel that lands scallops on Monday may depart on a second trip on the same day it landed scallops (Monday), but cannot land scallops again until Tuesday or later.

Scallop Pre-Landing Notification:  LACG IFQ and NGOM vessels must send a Vessel Monitoring System (VMS) Scallop Pre-Landing Notification form at least 6 hours before arrival on the way back to port, or immediately after fishing ends if less than 6 hours before arrival.  In addition, you must submit this form on trips that are not declared as scallop trips, but on which scallops are kept incidentally.  Forms must include the:

  • Operator’s permit number;
  • VTR serial number recorded from that trip's VTR;
  • Estimated Amount of scallop meats and/or bushels to be landed;
  • Estimated time and date of arrival in port;
  • Port City and State at which the scallops will be landed; and
  • Whether any scallops were caught in the NGOM.

Daily Scallop Catch Reports:  Scallop catch reports are required to be submitted daily for vessels that fish for, possess, or retain scallops and not also fishing under a Northeast multispecies days-at-sea or sector allocation.  These reports must be submitted in 24-hour intervals for each day of fishing that begins at 0000 hours and ends at 2400 hours.  The reports must be submitted before 9:00 a.m. local time each day for the previous day’s catch.  Each report must include the:

  • Operator’s permit number;
  • VTR serial number;
  • Date fish were caught;
  • Total pounds of scallop meets kept; and
  • Total pounds of all other fish kept.

Declaration Instructions

  • To declare a ETFA trip, please use the Elephant Trunk SAA declaration (SES-SCG-ETXXXX).
    • We are currently in the process of updating our VMS software.  The new software update will change the Elephant Trunk declaration to an Elephant Trunk Flex declaration.
  • To declare a MAAA trip, please use the Mid-Atlantic SAA declaration (SES-SCG-MAXXXX).
    • Do not declare a Hudson Canyon, Elephant Trunk or Delmarva access area trip.

Shell Stock Restrictions:

  • Vessels fishing in the Georges Bank paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP) closure area may not retain in-shell
  • Vessels fishing in or transiting the area south of 42°20′N. at any time during a trip may possess no more than 75 bu of in-shell scallops shoreward of the VMS demarcation line.
  • A vessel declared into the Sea Scallop Area Access Program may not possess more than

75 bu of in-shell scallops outside of the access area.

  • Vessels issued an LAGC NGOM scallop permit and IFQ vessels fishing in the NGOM may possess no more than 25 bu in-shell scallops shoreward of the VMS demarcation line.
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.

Industry-Funded Scallop Observer Program Call-In Guide

All scallop vessels must call (508) 495-2100 to notify the observer program of their intent to fish.

Limited Access (LA) Vessels MUST provide 72 hours’ notice before the intended sail date. Notice should be no more than 10 days prior to sail date. Date requests within the 72 hours’ notice window will not be granted.

LA General Category Vessels (LAGC) MUST notify by Thursday for the upcoming calendar week (Sunday through Saturday). Only one call per calendar week is required. Calls will not be back-dated if received after the calendar week has begun.

STEP I – Call the Automated IVR System at (508) 495-2100

  1. Press 1 to report a trip and follow the telephone message prompts.
  2. Gear type:
    • Press 1 for Scallop Dredge
    • Press 2 for Scallop Trawl
  1. Permit type: Press 1 for Limited Access
    • Press 2 for Limited Access General Category
  1. Fishing area:
    • Press 0 for Elephant Trunk Flex Access Area
    • Press 1 for Nantucket Lightship Access Area
    • Press 2 for Closed Area II Access Area
    • Press 4 for Mid Atlantic Open Area
    • Press 5 for Georges Bank Open Area
    • Press 9 for Mid Atlantic Access Area           

5. Phone Number: Enter your 10 digit phone number (DO NOT use ‘1’ before the area code)

  1. Permit number: Enter your 6 digit permit number
  2. Name: Please speak clearly, first and last name, then press # key
  3. Sailing Port: Please speak city and state you intend to sail from, then press # key
  4. Date of sailing: Please speak clearly the month, day, and year, then press # key
    *** Please note that 72 hours’  notice is REQUIRED for all sail dates

You will receive a confirmation number which MUST be retained.

A waiver or observer selection email from NMFS will be sent to your VMS unit within 24 hours.

***If you do not receive VMS notification within 24 hours, contact the Vessel Call-in Coordinator at (508) 495–2188

If you are issued a waiver, you may begin your trip.

If you receive an observer notice, please follow the instructions in Step II. 

STEP II – When selected to carry an observer

If selected for observer coverage you MUST provide at least 48 hours’ notice to the observer providers. 

You are required to call all three of the observer providers in an attempt to obtain coverage, but you may choose to hire any provider that is available.

Current Industry Funded Scallop Observer Providers

A.I.S. Inc. (774) 200-1688

East West Technical Services Inc. (860) 910-4957

Fathom Research LLC. (508) 990 - 0997

Please call the Vessel Call-in Coordinator at (508) 495-2188 or (508) 560-3550 (after-hours cell) if: there are no observers available from any of the providers and you would like to request a waiver, or if you are cancelling or delaying your trip more than 48 hours beyond the intended sail date.

This summary is not a substitute for the actual regulations. The full text of the regulations is available at http://www.nero.noaa.gov or call the Northeast Regional Office at (978) 281-9315.
OMB Control No: 0648-0593, Expires:  October 31, 2018.  Notwithstanding any provision of the law, no person is required to respond to, nor shall any person be subject to a penalty for failure to comply with, a collection of information subject to the requirements of the Paperwork Reduction Act, unless that collection of information displays a currently valid OMB Control Number
Northeast Fisheries Observer Program, March 21, 2017

Appendix B: Scallop Area Coordinates

Closed Areas

Closed Area 1 Closed Area

Point

Latitude

Longitude

Note

CAIA1

41°26′ N.

68°30′ W.

CAIA2

40°58′ N.

68°30′ W.

CAIA3

40°54.95′ N.

68°53.37′ W.

(1)

CAIA4

41°04′ N.

69°01′ W.

(1)

CAIA1

41°26′ N.

68°30′ W.

1From Point CAIA3 to Point CAIA4 along the western boundary of Closed Area I, defined in § 648.81(a)(1).

Closed Area 2 Extension Closed Area

Point

Latitude

Longitude

Note

CAIIE1

40°30'N

67°20′ W.

 

CAIIE2

41°00′ N.

67°20′ W.

 

CAIIE3

41°00′ N.

66°35.8′ W.

 

CAIIE4

41°18.45′ N.

(1)

(2)

CAIIE5

40°30′ N.

(3)

(2)

CAIIE1

40°30'N

67°20′ W.

 

1The intersection of  41°18.45′ N. lat. and the U.S.-Canada Maritime Boundary, approximately  41°18.45′ N. lat. and 66°24.89′ W. long.

2From Point CAIIE4 to Point CAIIE5 following the U.S.-Canada Maritime Boundary.

3The intersection of 40°30′ N. lat. and the U.S.-Canada Maritime Boundary, approximately, 65°44.34'W. long.

Scallop Access Areas

Closed Area 2 Access Area

Point

Latitude

Longitude

Note

CAIIA1

41°00′ N.

67°20′ W.

CAIIA2

41°00′ N.

66°35.8′ W.

CAIIA3

41°18.45' N.

(1)

(2)

CAIIA4

41°30′ N.

(3)

(2)

CAIIA5

41°30′ N.

67°20′ W.

CAIIA1

41°00′ N.

67°20′ W.

1The intersection of 41°18.45' N. lat. and the U.S.-Canada Maritime Boundary, approximately 41°18.45' N. lat. and 66°24.89' W. long.

2From Point CAIIA3 connected to Point CAIIA4 along the U.S.-Canada Maritime Boundary.

3The intersection of 41°30′ N. lat. and the U.S.-Canada Maritime Boundary, approximately 41°30′ N. lat., 66°34.73′ W. long.

Nantucket Lightship Access Area

Point

Latitude

Longitude

NLAA1

40°50′ N.

69°30′ W.

NLAA2

40°50′ N.

69°00′ W.

NLAA3

40°33’ N.

69°00’ W

NLAA4

40°33’ N.

68°48’ W

NLAA5

40°20’ N.

68°48’ W

NLAA6

40°20′ N.

69°30′ W.

NLAA1

40°50′ N.

69°30′ W.

Elephant Trunk Flex Access Area

Point

Latitude

Longitude

ETCA 1

38°50’ N.

74°20’ W.

ETCA 2

38°50’ N.

73°40’ W.

ETCA 3

38°40’ N.

73°40’ W.

ETCA 4

38°40’ N.

73°50’ W.

ETCA 5

38°30’ N.

73°50’ W.

ETCA 6

38°30’ N.

74°20’ W.

ETCA 1

38°50’ N.

74°20’ W.

The Mid-Atlantic Access Area is the combination of these three areas:

Delmarva Scallop Rotational Area

Point

Latitude

Longitude

DMV1

38°10′ N.

74°50′ W.

DMV2

38°10′ N.

74°00′ W.

DMV3

37°15′ N.

74°00′ W.

DMV4

37°15′ N.

74°50′ W.

DMV1

38°10′ N.

74°50′ W.

Hudson Canyon Scallop Rotational Area

Point

Latitude

Longitude

H1

39°30′ N.

73°10′ W.

H2

39°30′ N.

72°30′ W.

H3

38°30′ N.

73°30′ W.

H4

38°50′ N.

73°30′ W.

H5

38°50′ N.

73°42′ W.

H1

39°30′ N.

73°10′ W.

Elephant Trunk Scallop Rotational Area

Point

Latitude

Longitude

ETAA1

38°30’ N.

74°20’ W.

ETAA2

38°30’ N.

73°50’ W.

ETAA3

38°40’ N.

73°50’ W.

ETAA4

38°40′ N.

73°40′ W.

ETAA5

38°50′ N.

73°40′ W.

ETAA6

38°50′ N.

73°30′ W.

ETAA7

38°10′ N.

73°30′ W.

ETAA8

38°10′ N.

74°20′ W.

ETAA1

38°30′ N.

74°20′ W.

Atlantic Sea Scallop Managed Waters Map; Fishing Year 2017

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