Pacific Council & Advisory Entities Will Meet June 18-25

The Pacific Council and its advisory entities will meet June 18-25, 2013. The Pacific Council meeting will begin on Thursday, June 20, 2013 at 8 a.m., reconvening each day through Tuesday, June 25, 2013. 

All meetings are open to the public, except a closed session will be held at the end of the scheduled agenda on Thursday, June 20, to address litigation and personnel matters. The Pacific Council will meet as late as necessary each day to complete its scheduled business.


Senior Leadership Changes Within NMFS

NOAA Fisheries announced several senior leadership changes that align with the changes we are making to our West Coast operations. First, our current Northwest Regional Administrator, Will Stelle, will take on the responsibility of regional administrator for the agency's Northwest and Southwest regional offices as the agency works on forming its new West Coast Regional Office. At the same time, Rod McInnis, our Southwest Regional Administrator, has accepted a new position at Fisheries headquarters in Silver Spring, Maryland, as the Acting Director of NOAA Fisheries Office of International Affairs.

Updating List of Fisheries

The Pacific Fishery Management Council (Pacific Council) will convene a conference call of its Ecosystem Advisory Subpanel (EAS). A listening station will be available at the Pacific Council offices for interested members of the public, and there may be opportunities to attend the meeting remotely.

The conference call will be held Friday, June 14, 2013, from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

Halibut Workgroup to Meet on Recreational Catch


The Pacific Fishery Management Council's (Pacific Council) ad hoc South of Humbug Pacific Halibut Workgroup (Workgroup) will hold a webinar to review analysis of recreational management measures designed to reduce Pacific halibut catch in southern Oregon and northern California (i.e., south of Humbug Mountain).

The webinar will be held Wednesday, June 12, 2013 from 9 a.m. until business for the day has been completed.


HMSMT Meeting May 28-30

The Pacific Fishery Management Council's (Pacific Council) Highly Migratory Species Management Team (HMSMT) will hold a meeting, which is open to the public. The HMSMT work session will begin at 3 p.m. on Tuesday, May 28; 8:30 a.m. on Wednesday, May 29; and 8:30 a.m. Thursday, May 30, 2013. On each day, the meeting will continue until business is completed.


2013 Management Measures for Ocean Salmon


Through this final rule NMFS establishes fishery management measures for the 2013 ocean salmon fisheries off Washington, Oregon, and California and the 2014 salmon seasons opening earlier than May 1, 2014. Specific fishery management measures vary by fishery and by area. 

The measures establish fishing areas, seasons, quotas, legal gear, recreational fishing days and catch limits, possession and landing restrictions, and minimum lengths for salmon taken in the U.S. exclusive economic zone (EEZ) (3-200 NM) off Washington, Oregon, and California. The management measures are intended to prevent overfishing and to apportion the ocean harvest equitably among treaty Indian, non-treaty commercial, and recreational fisheries. The measures are also intended to allow a portion of the salmon runs to escape the ocean fisheries in order to provide for spawning escapement and inside fisheries (fisheries occurring in state internal waters). This document also announces the availability of an environmental assessment (EA) that analyzes the environmental impacts of implementing the 2013 ocean salmon management measures.

This final rule is effective from 0001 hours Pacific Daylight Time, May 1, 2013, until the effective date of the 2014 management measures, as published in the Federal Register. Comments regarding the reporting burden estimate or any other aspect of the collection-of-information requirements in these management measures may be submitted at any time.


Southwest Fisheries Science Center Programmatic Environmental Assessment Draft

NMFS announces the availability of the ``Draft Programmatic Environmental Assessment (DPEA) for Fisheries Research Conducted and Funded by the Southwest Fisheries Science Center (SWFSC).'' Publication of this notice begins the official public comment period for this DPEA. The purpose of the DPEA is to evaluate, in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the potential direct, indirect, and cumulative impacts of conducting and funding fisheries and ecosystem research along the U.S. West Coast, throughout the Eastern Tropical Pacific Ocean, and in the Scotia Sea area off Antarctica.

Comments and information must be received no later than July 1, 2013.


Modifications of the West Coast Commercial and Recreational Salmon Fisheries Announced

NOAA Fisheries announces two inseason actions in the ocean salmon fisheries. These inseason actions modified the commercial fisheries in the area from Cape Falcon, Oregon to Point Arena, California.

The effective dates for the inseason action are set out in this document under the heading Inseason Actions. Inseason actions remain in effect until modified by additional inseason action or superseded by the 2013 annual management measures on May 1, 2013. Comments will be accepted through May 10, 2013.


U.S. Eyeing New Border-Crossing Fee for Canadians

The United States is exploring how to save money on security by charging a toll to Canadians crossing the border by ground – a possible new traveller’s tax that immediately raised fierce opposition from political and business leaders in both countries.

The idea of a “crossing fee” was revealed in a recent budget request by the Department of Homeland Security, which was seeking funds to study the cost of collecting a new toll for people walking and driving into the United States from the north and south.

Stock Assessment Panels to Meet

Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public MeetingThe Stock Assessment Review Panels (STAR Panels) will hold work sessions to review stock assessments using data-moderate methods, as well as tier 1 benchmark stock assessments for petrale sole and darkblotched rockfish, rougheye rockfish and aurora rockfish, shortspine thornyhead and longspine thornyheads, and cowcod and Pacific sanddabs, all of which are open to the public.

The meetings will be held April 22-26, 2013; May 13-17, 2013; July 8-12, 2013; July 22-26, 2013; and August 5-9, 2013. For specific dates and times click below.