(a) To be designated as an exempted state based on the state's participation in a regional survey of marine and anadromous recreational fishing catch and effort, a state may submit to NMFS a proposal that fully describes the state's participation in a qualifying regional survey, and the survey's sample design, data collection and availability.
(b) A qualifying regional survey must:
(1) Include all of the states within each region as follows:
(i) Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Florida (Atlantic coast);
(ii) Florida (Gulf of Mexico coast), Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas;
(iii) Puerto Rico;
(iv) U.S. Virgin Islands;
(v) California, Oregon and Washington;
(vii) Hawaii; or
(viii) American Samoa, Guam and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.
(2) Utilize angler registry data, or direct field counts to obtain angler effort, or other appropriate statistical means to obtain fishing effort;
(3) Utilize angler registry data to identify individuals to be surveyed by telephone, mail or Internet if such regional survey includes a telephone survey component; and
(4) Meet NMFS survey design and data collection standards.