Groundfish Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska and Pacific Halibut Fisheries; Observer Program

Docket ID: NOAA-NMFS-2011-0210
Agency: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
Parent Agency: Department of Commerce (DOC)
This action adds a new funding and deployment system to the existing North Pacific Groundfish Observer Program. It addresses longstanding concerns about statistical bias of observer-collected data and cost inequality among fishery participants with the Observer Programs current funding and deployment structure. Under the current structure, vessel and processing plant operators enter into direct contracts with observer providers to meet coverage requirements. Existing coverage requirements, based on vessel length and processing volume, are set at 30 percent or 100 percent, and some vessels and processors are exempt from observer coverage. Under this rule, vessels and processors required to have 100 percent observer coverage will continue to enter into contracts with observer providers for their coverage. Vessels and processors required to have less than 100 percent coverage would pay an ex-vessel value-based fee to NOAA Fisheries, and NOAA Fisheries will enter into direct contracts with observer providers. Groundfish and halibut vessels less than 60 feet in length are also added to the Observer Program for the first time.
RIN: 0648-BB42
Impacts and Effects: Small Entities (Business)
CFR Citation: 50 CFR 679
Priority: Substantive, Nonsignificant
UA and Regulatory Plan Information open glossary dialog  
Publication Period: Spring 2013
Agenda Stage of Rulemaking: Completed Action
Major Rule: No
Legal Authorities: 16 USC 1801
Legal Deadlines: None
Government Levels Affected: Federal
Federalism Implications: No
Unfunded Mandates: No
Requires Regulatory Flexibility Analysis: No
Small Entities Affected: Business
International Impacts: No
Energy Effects: No
Included in Regulatory Plan: No
ActionDateFR Citation
Notice of Availability03/14/201277 FR 15019
Notice04/17/201277 FR 22753
NPRM04/18/201277 FR 23326
NPRM Comment Period End05/14/201277 FR 15019
Hearing05/21/201277 FR 29961
Second NPRM Comment Period End06/18/201277 FR 23326
Final Action11/21/201277 FR 70061
Docket Details open glossary dialog  
Related RINs: 0648-BB42
Related Dockets: None
Type: Rulemaking

Primary Documents

View All  (6)
Comment Period Closed
Jun 18, 2012 11:59 PM ET
Proposed Rule
Posted: 05/21/2012
ID: NOAA-NMFS-2011-0210-0011
Comment Period Closed
Jun 18, 2012 11:59 PM ET
Proposed Rule
Posted: 04/18/2012
ID: NOAA-NMFS-2011-0210-0006
Comment Period Closed
May 14, 2012 11:59 PM ET
Proposed Rule
Posted: 03/14/2012
ID: NOAA-NMFS-2011-0210-0001
Comment Period Closed
Posted: 11/21/2012
ID: NOAA-NMFS-2011-0210-0051
Comment Period Closed
Posted: 07/05/2012
ID: NOAA-NMFS-2011-0210-0043

Supporting Documents

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Comments Not Accepted
Supporting & Related Material
Posted: 09/27/2012
ID: NOAA-NMFS-2011-0210-0050
Comments Not Accepted
Supporting & Related Material
Posted: 07/05/2012
ID: NOAA-NMFS-2011-0210-0042
Comments Not Accepted
Supporting & Related Material
Posted: 03/14/2012
ID: NOAA-NMFS-2011-0210-0002


View All  (40)

Comments Received*
Regulatory Timeline
Pre Rule
Current Stage
Proposed Rule
Current Stage
Final Rule
Current Stage
Current Stage
Agency Contact
James Balsiger
Administrator, Alaska Region
907 586-7221
907 586-7465 (Fax)
709 West Ninth Street, Juneau, AK 99801
Juneau, AK 99801
*This count refers to the total comment/submissions received on this docket, as of 11:59 PM yesterday. Note: Agencies review all submissions, however some agencies may choose to redact, or withhold, certain submissions (or portions thereof) such as those containing private or proprietary information, inappropriate language, or duplicate/near duplicate examples of a mass-mail campaign. This can result in discrepancies between this count and those displayed when conducting searches on the Public Submission document type. For specific information about an agency’s public submission policy, refer to its website or the Federal Register document.