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PART 300 - INTERNATIONAL FISHERIES REGULATIONS
Authority:

16 U.S.C. 951 et seq., 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq., 16 U.S.C. 5501 et seq., 16 U.S.C. 2431 et seq., 31 U.S.C. 9701 et seq.

Source:

61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, unless otherwise noted.

Subpart A - General
Authority:

16 U.S.C. 2431 et seq., 31 U.S.C. 9701 et seq.

§ 300.1 Purpose and scope.

The purpose of this part is to implement the fishery conservation and management measures provided for in the international treaties, conventions, or agreements specified in each subpart, as well as certain provisions of the Lacey Act Amendments of 1981. The regulations in this part apply, except where otherwise specified in this part, to all persons and all places subject to the jurisdiction of the United States under the acts implemented under each subpart.

§ 300.2 Definitions.

In addition to the definitions in each act, agreement, convention, or treaty specified in subparts B through K of this part, the terms used in this part have the following meanings:

Assistant Administrator means the Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce, or a designee. Address: Room 14555, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910.

Authorized officer means:

(1) Any commissioned, warrant, or petty officer of the U.S. Coast Guard; or any U.S. Coast Guard personnel accompanying and acting under the direction of a commissioned, warrant, or petty officer of the U.S. Coast Guard;

(2) Any special agent or fisheries enforcement officer of NMFS; or

(3) Any person designated by the head of any Federal or state agency that has entered into an agreement with the Secretary of Commerce or the Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard to enforce the provisions of any statute administered by the Secretary.

CCAMLR inspector means a person designated by a member of the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources as an inspector under Article XXIV of the Convention on the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources to verify compliance with measures in effect under the Convention.

Exclusive Economic Zone or EEZ means the zone established by Presidential Proclamation 5030, dated March 10, 1983, as defined in 16 U.S.C. 1802(6).

Fishing or to fish means:

(1) The catching or taking of fish;

(2) The attempted catching or taking of fish;

(3) Any other activity that can reasonably be expected to result in the catching or taking of fish; or

(4) Any operations at sea in support of, or in preparation for, any activity described in paragraphs (1) through (3) of this definition.

Fishing vessel means any vessel, boat, ship, or other craft that is used for, equipped to be used for, or of a type normally used for fishing.

IATTC means the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission, established pursuant to the Convention for the Establishment of an Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission.

Import means to land on, bring into, or introduce into, or attempt to land on, bring into, or introduce into, any place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, whether or not such landing, bringing, or introduction, constitutes an importation within the meaning of the customs laws of the United States.

IRCS means International Radio Call Sign.

Magnuson-Stevens Act means the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

National of the United States or U.S. national means any person subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, including, but not limited to, a citizen or resident of the United States, or a person employed on a vessel of the United States. In the case of a corporation, partnership or other non- natural person, this includes, but is not limited to, any entity that is the owner of a vessel of the United States.

NMFS means the National Marine Fisheries Service, NOAA, Department of Commerce.

NMFS Headquarters means NMFS, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910. Attention: Office of International Affairs.

Official number means the documentation number issued by the USCG or the certificate number issued by a state or the USCG for an undocumented vessel, or any equivalent number if the vessel is registered in a foreign nation.

Operator means, with respect to any vessel, the master or other individual aboard and in charge of that vessel.

Owner means, with respect to any vessel:

(1) Any person who owns that vessel in whole or part (whether or not the vessel is leased or chartered);

(2) Any charterer of the vessel, whether bareboat, time, or voyage;

(3) Any person who acts in the capacity of a charterer, including but not limited to parties to a management agreement, operating agreement, or any similar agreement that bestows control over the destination, function, or operation of the vessel; or

(4) Any agent designated as such by a person described in this definition.

Person means any individual (whether or not a citizen or national of the United States), any corporation, partnership, association, or other entity (whether or not organized, or existing under the laws of any state), and any Federal, state, local, or foreign government or any entity of any such government.

Regional Administrator means the Administrator of one of the six NMFS Regions, described in Table 1 of § 600.502 of this title, or a designee.

Science and Research Director means the Director of one of the six NMFS Fisheries Science Centers described in Table 1 of § 600.502 of this title, or a designee, also known as the Science Director.

Secretary means the Secretary of Commerce or a designee.

USCG means the United States Coast Guard.

Yellowfin tuna means any fish of the species Thunnus albacares (synonomy: Neothunnus macropterus).

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 76 FR 59305, Sept. 26, 2011]

§ 300.3 Relation to other laws.

Other laws that may apply to fishing activities addressed herein are set forth in § 600.705 of chapter VI of this title.

§ 300.4 General prohibitions.

It is unlawful for any person subject to the jurisdiction of the United States to:

(a) Violate the conditions or restrictions of a permit issued under this part.

(b) Fail to submit information, fail to submit information in a timely manner, or submit false or inaccurate information, with respect to any information required to be submitted, reported, communicated, or recorded pursuant to this part.

(c) Make any false statement, oral or written, to an authorized officer concerning the catching, taking, harvesting, possession, landing, purchase, sale, or transfer of fish, or concerning any other matter subject to investigation by that officer under this part.

(d) Conceal any material fact (including by omission), concerning any matter subject to investigation by an authorized officer under this part.

(e) Refuse to allow an authorized officer to inspect any report or record required to be made or kept under this part.

(f) Falsify, cover, or otherwise obscure, the name, home port, official number (if any), or any other similar marking or identification of any fishing vessel subject to this part such that the vessel cannot be readily identified from an enforcement vessel or aircraft.

(g) Fail to comply immediately with any of the enforcement and boarding procedures specified in this part.

(h) Refuse to allow an authorized officer to board a fishing vessel, or enter any other area of custody (i.e., any vessel, building, vehicle, live car, pound, pier, or dock facility where fish might be found) subject to such person's control, for the purpose of conducting any inspection, search, seizure, investigation, or arrest in connection with the enforcement of this part or any other applicable law.

(i) Destroy, stave, or dispose of in any manner, any fish, gear, cargo, or other matter, upon any communication or signal from an authorized officer of the United States, or upon the approach of such an officer, enforcement vessel, or aircraft, before the officer has had the opportunity to inspect same, or in contravention of directions from such an officer.

(j) Intentionally destroy evidence that could be used to determine if a violation of this part has occurred.

(k) Assault, resist, oppose, impede, intimidate, threaten, obstruct, delay, prevent, or interfere, in any manner, with an authorized officer in the conduct of any boarding, inspection, search, seizure, investigation, or arrest in connection with enforcement of this part.

(l) Resist a lawful arrest or detention for any act prohibited by this part.

(m) Interfere with, delay, or prevent, by any means, the apprehension, arrest, or detection of another person, knowing that such person has committed any act prohibited by this part.

(n) Interfere with, obstruct, delay, or prevent, by any means, an investigation, search, seizure, or disposition of seized property in connection with enforcement of this part.

(o) Ship, transport, offer for sale, sell, purchase, import, export, or have custody, control, or possession of, any fish imported, exported or re-exported in violation of this part.

(p) Import, export, or re-export any fish regulated under this part without a valid International Fisheries Trade Permit as required under § 300.322 or applicable shipment documentation as required under § 300.323.

(q) Violate any provision of any statute implemented by this part.

(r) Attempt to do any of the foregoing.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 81 FR 51133, Aug. 3, 2016]

§ 300.5 Facilitation of enforcement.

(a) Compliance. The operator of, or any other person aboard, any fishing vessel subject to this part must immediately comply with instructions and signals issued by an authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector to stop the vessel, and with instructions to facilitate safe boarding and inspection of the vessel, its gear, equipment, fishing record (where applicable), and catch for purposes of enforcing this part.

(1) For the purposes of this section “freeboard” means the working distance between the top rail of the gunwale of a vessel and the water's surface. Where cut-outs are provided in the bulwarks for the purpose of boarding personnel, freeboard means the distance between the threshold of the bulwark cut-out and the water's surface.

(2) For the purposes of this section, “pilot ladder” means a flexible ladder constructed and approved to meet the U.S. Coast Guard standards for pilot ladders at 46 CFR subpart 163.003 entitled Pilot Ladder.

(b) Communications.

(1) Upon being approached by a USCG vessel or aircraft, or other vessel or aircraft with an authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector aboard, the operator of a fishing vessel must be alert for communications conveying enforcement instructions.

(2) VHF-FM radiotelephone is the preferred method of communicating between vessels. If the size of the vessel and the wind, sea, and visibility conditions allow, a loudhailer may be used instead of the radio. Hand signals, placards, high frequency radiotelephone, voice, flags, whistle or horn may be employed by an authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector, and message blocks may be dropped from an aircraft.

(3) If other communications are not practicable, visual signals may be transmitted by flashing light directed at the vessel signaled. USCG units will normally use the flashing light signal “L” which, in the International Code of Signals, means “you should stop your vessel instantly.”

(4) Failure of a vessel's operator promptly to stop the vessel when directed to do so by an authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector, or by an enforcement vessel or aircraft, using loudhailer, radiotelephone, flashing light, flags, whistle, horn or other means constitutes prima facie evidence of the offense of refusal to allow an authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector to board.

(5) A person aboard a vessel who does not understand a signal from an enforcement unit and who is unable to obtain clarification by loudhailer or radiotelephone must consider the signal to be a command to stop the vessel immediately.

(c) Boarding. The operator of a vessel directed to stop must:

(1) Monitor Channel 16, VHF-FM, if so equipped.

(2) Stop immediately and lay to or, if appropriate and/or directed to do so by the authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector, maneuver in such a way as to allow the safe boarding of the vessel by the authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector and the boarding party.

(3) Except for fishing vessels with a freeboard of 4 feet (1.25 m) or less, provide, when requested by an authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector, a pilot ladder capable of being used for the purpose of enabling the authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector to embark and disembark the vessel safely. The pilot ladder must be maintained in good condition and kept clean.

(4) When necessary to facilitate the boarding or when requested by an authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector, provide a manrope or safety line, and illumination for the pilot ladder.

(5) Take such other actions as necessary to facilitate boarding and to ensure the safety of the authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector and the boarding party.

(d) Signals. The following signals, extracted from the International Code of Signals, may be sent by flashing light by an enforcement unit when conditions do not allow communications by loudhailer or radiotelephone. Knowledge of these signals by vessel operators is not required. However, knowledge of these signals and appropriate action by a vessel operator may preclude the necessity of sending the signal “L” and the necessity for the vessel to stop instantly.

(1) “AA” repeated (.- .-) is the call to an unknown station. The operator of the signaled vessel should respond by identifying the vessel by radiotelephone or by illuminating the vessel's identification.

(2) “RY-CY” (.-. -.-- -.-. -.--) means “you should proceed at slow speed, a boat is coming to you.” This signal is normally employed when conditions allow an enforcement boarding without the necessity of the vessel being boarded coming to a complete stop, or, in some cases, without retrieval of fishing gear that may be in the water.

(3) “SQ3” (... --.- ...--) means “you should stop or heave to; I am going to board you.”

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 73 FR 67809, Nov. 17, 2008]

Subpart B [Reserved]
Subpart C - Eastern Pacific Tuna Fisheries
Authority:

16 U.S.C. 951 et seq.

§ 300.20 Purpose and scope.

The regulations in this subpart are issued under the authority of the Tuna Conventions Act of 1950, as amended, (Act) and apply to persons and vessels subject to the jurisdiction of the United States. The regulations implement recommendations and other decisions of the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC) for the conservation and management of stocks of tunas and tuna-like species and other species of fish taken by vessels fishing for tunas and tuna-like species in the IATTC Convention Area. The Secretary of Commerce, in consultation with the Secretary of State and, with respect to enforcement measures, the U.S. Coast Guard, may promulgate such regulations as may be necessary to carry out the U.S. international obligations under the Convention for the Establishment of an Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (Convention), the Convention for the Strengthening of the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission Established by the 1949 Convention between the United States of America and the Republic of Costa Rica (Antigua Convention), and the Act, including recommendations and other decisions adopted by the IATTC.

[82 FR 17385, Apr. 11, 2017]

§ 300.21 Definitions.

In addition to the terms defined in § 300.2, in the Act, the Convention for the Establishment of an Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (Convention), and the Convention for the Strengthening of the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission Established by the 1949 Convention between the United States of America and the Republic of Costa Rica (Antigua Convention), the terms used in this subpart have the following meanings. If a term is defined differently in § 300.2, in the Act, or in the Antigua Convention, the definition in this section shall apply.

Active FAD means a FAD whose location is being tracked by the vessel owner or operator using tracking equipment, such as radio or satellite buoys. A FAD shall be considered an Active FAD unless/until the vessel is no longer tracking its location and the vessel owner or operator notifies the IATTC that the FAD is no longer active (i.e., deactivated).

Commercial with respect to commercial fishing, means fishing in which the fish harvested, either in whole or in part, are intended to enter commerce through sale, barter or trade.

Commercial passenger fishing vessel means any vessel licensed for commercial passenger fishing purposes within the State out of which it is operating and from which, while under charter or hire, persons are legally permitted to conduct sportfishing activities.

Convention Area or IATTC Convention Area means all waters of the Pacific Ocean within the area bounded by the west coast of the Americas and by 50° N latitude from the coast of North America to its intersection with 150° W longitude, then 150° W longitude to its intersection with 50° S latitude, and then 50° S latitude to its intersection with the coast of South America.

Data buoy means, for the purpose of § 300.25, a floating device, either drifting or anchored, which is deployed by one or more governmental or recognized scientific organizations or entities for the purpose of electronically collecting and measuring environmental data, and not for the purpose of fishing activities, and which has been reported to the IATTC by a Member or Cooperating non-Member of the Commission.

Dolphin set means a purse seine set where a class size 6 U.S. purse seine vessel (greater than 363 metric tons carrying capacity) deploys a net on, or encircles, dolphins to catch yellowfin tuna.

Fish aggregating device (FAD) means a manmade raft or other floating object used to attract tuna and make them available to fishing vessels.

Fishing trip means a period that a fishing vessel spends at sea between port visits and during which any fishing occurs.

Fishing vessel means any vessel, boat, ship, or other craft that is used for, equipped to be used for, or of a type that is normally used for fishing or for assisting or supporting a vessel engaged in fishing, except purse seine skiffs.

Floating object means any natural object or FAD around which fishing vessels may catch tuna.

Floating object set means a purse seine set in which purse seine gear is deployed to encircle a floating object.

Force majeure means, for the purpose of § 300.25, a situation in which a vessel at sea, except while transiting between ports on a trip during which no fishing operations occur, is disabled by mechanical and/or structural failure, fire or explosion.

Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Branch means the Chief of the HMS Branch of the Sustainable Fisheries Division, National Marine Fisheries Service West Coast Region, Suite 4200, 501 W Ocean Blvd., Long Beach, CA 90802, and .

Incidental catch or incidental species means species caught while fishing with the primary purpose of catching a different species. An incidental catch is expressed as a percentage of the weight of the total fish on board.

Land or Landing means to begin transfer of fish from a fishing vessel. Once transfer begins, all fish on board the vessel are counted as part of the landing.

Longline gear means a type of fishing gear consisting of a main line that exceeds 1 nautical mile in length, is suspended horizontally in the water column anchored, floating, or attached to a vessel, and from which branch or dropper lines with hooks are attached.

Mesh size means the distance between the inside of one knot to the inside of the opposing knot when the mesh is stretched, regardless of twine size.

Mobulid ray means any animal in the family Mobulidae, which includes manta rays (Manta spp.) and devil rays (Mobula spp.).

Observer means an individual placed aboard a fishing vessel under the IATTC observer program or any other international observer program in which the United States may participate.

Overall length means registered length, or the horizontal distance between the outboard side of the foremost part of the stem and the outboard side of the aftermost part of the stern, excluding rudders, outboard motor brackets, and other similar fittings and attachments for a single-hull vessel; for a multi-hull vessel, it is the horizontal distance between the outboard side of the foremost part of the stem of the foremost hull and the outboard side of the aftermost part of the stern of the aftermost hull, excluding fittings or attachments (See 46 CFR 69.203).

Regional Administrator means the Regional Administrator for the West Coast Region, National Marine Fisheries Service, or a designee.

Regional Vessel Register (hereafter referred to as Vessel Register) means the regional register of vessels authorized to fish for tuna and tuna-like species in the Convention Area, as established by the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission in June 2000.

Shark line means a type of fishing gear used to target sharks and consisting of an individual hooked line or hooked lines attached to the floatline or directly to the floats of longline gear and deployed in the water column at depths shallower than the mainline.

South Pacific Tuna Treaty means the Treaty on Fisheries Between the Governments of Certain Pacific Island States and the Government of the United States of America (50 CFR part 300, subpart D).

Sustainable Fisheries Division (SFD) means the Assistant Regional Administrator for the Sustainable Fisheries Division, West Coast Region, National Marine Fisheries Service, or a designee.

Tender vessel means a vessel that does not engage in purse seine fishing but tends to FADs in support of tuna fishing operations.

Transship means to unload fish from a vessel that caught fish to another vessel.

Transshipment receiving vessel means any vessel, boat, ship, or other craft that is used to receive fish from a fishing vessel.

Trip limit means the total allowable amount of a species by weight of fish that may be retained on board, transshipped, or landed from a single fishing trip by a vessel that harvests tuna or tuna-like species.

Tropical tuna means any of the following species:

Common name Scientific name
Bigeye tuna Thunnus obesus.
Skipjack tuna Katsuwonus pelamis.
Yellowfin tuna Thunnus albacares.

Tuna means any fish of the genus Thunnus and the species Katsuwonus pelamis.

VMS unit, sometimes known as a “mobile transmitting unit,” means a transceiver or communications device, including all hardware and software that is carried and operated on a vessel as part of a VMS.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996]

§ 300.22 Recordkeeping and reporting requirements.

(a) Logbooks and reporting on whale sharks and FADs -

(1) Logbook reporting. The master or other person in charge of a commercial fishing vessel or commercial passenger fishing vessel (CPFV) authorized to fish for tuna and tuna-like species in the Convention Area, or a person authorized in writing to serve as the agent for either person, must keep an accurate log of operations conducted from the fishing vessel. For vessels greater than 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity that are authorized to purse seine for tuna in the Convention Area, the log must include for each day the date, noon position (stated in latitude and longitude or in relation to known physical features), and the tonnage of fish on board, by species. The record and bridge log maintained and submitted at the request of the IATTC shall be sufficient to comply with this paragraph, provided the items of information specified by the IATTC are accurately entered in the log. For purse seine vessels of 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity or less and for non-purse seine vessels, maintaining and submitting any logbook required by existing state or federal regulation shall be sufficient to comply with this paragraph.

(2) Whale shark encirclement reporting. The owner and operator of a purse seine fishing vessel of the United States that encircles a whale shark (Rhincodon typus) while commercially fishing in the Convention Area must ensure that the incident is recorded on the log that is required by this paragraph (a). The log must include the following information: The number of individual whale sharks with which the vessel interacted, details of how and why the encirclement happened, where it occurred, steps taken to ensure safe release, and an assessment of the life status of the whale shark upon release (including whether the animal was released alive, but subsequently died), as may be further specified by NMFS.

(3) FAD data reporting for purse seine vessels -

(i) Reporting on FAD interactions. U.S. purse seine vessel operators shall provide the observer with the FAD identification code and, as appropriate, the other information in the FAD interaction standard format provided by the HMS Branch. U.S. vessel owners and operators, without an observer onboard, must ensure that any interaction or activity with a FAD is reported using a FAD interaction standard format provided by the HMS Branch. The owner and operator shall ensure that the form is submitted within 30 days of each landing or transshipment of tuna or tuna-like species to the address specified by the HMS Branch.

(ii) Reporting on Active FADs. U.S. vessel owners and operators must record or maintain daily information on all Active FADs that have been deployed in the water in the IATTC Convention Area in the format and to the address provided by the HMS Branch. This information must be submitted for each calendar month no later than 90 days after the month covered by the report.

(b) Vessel Register. The Vessel Register shall include, consistent with resolutions of the IATTC, all commercial fishing vessels and CPFVs authorized to fish for tuna and tuna-like species in the Convention Area. Except as provided under paragraph (b)(1) of this section, tuna purse seine vessels must be listed on the Vessel Register and categorized as active under paragraph (b)(4)(i) of this section in order to fish for tuna and tuna-like species in the Convention Area.

(1) Exception. Once per year, a vessel that is permitted and authorized under an alternative international tuna purse seine fisheries management regime in the Pacific Ocean may exercise an option to fish with purse seine gear to target tuna in the Convention Area without the vessel's capacity counted towards the cumulative carrying capacity described under paragraph (b)(4)(i)(A) of this section. This exception is for a single fishing trip that does not exceed 90 days in duration. At any time during the calendar year, a vessel exercising this exception shall follow the procedures, where applicable, described in paragraphs (b)(4) of this section. No more than 32 of such trips are allowed each calendar year. After the commencement of the 32nd such trip, the Regional Administrator shall announce, in the Federal Register and by other appropriate means, that no more such trips are allowed for the remainder of the calendar year. Under § 216.24(b)(6)(iii)(C) of this title, vessel assessment fees must be paid for vessels exercising this option.

(2) Requirements for inclusion of purse seine vessels on the Vessel Register. The tuna purse seine portion of the Vessel Register shall include, consistent with resolutions of the IATTC, only vessels that fished in the Convention Area prior to June 28, 2002. Inclusion on the tuna purse seine portion of the Vessel Register is valid through December 31 of each year. New tuna purse seine vessels may be added to the Vessel Register at any time to replace those previously removed by the Regional Administrator, provided that the total capacity of the replacement vessel or vessels does not exceed that of the tuna purse seine vessel or vessels being replaced.

(3) Vessel information.

(i) Information on each commercial fishing vessel or CPFV authorized to use purse seine, longline, drift gillnet, harpoon, troll, rod and reel, or pole and line fishing gear to fish for tuna and tuna-like species in the Convention Area for sale shall be collected by the Regional Administrator to conform to IATTC resolutions governing the Vessel Register. This information initially includes, but is not limited to, the vessel name and registration number; the name and business address of the owner(s) and managing owner(s); a photograph of the vessel with the registration number legible; previous vessel name(s) and previous flag (if known and if any); port of registry; International Radio Call Sign; vessel length, beam, and moulded depth; gross tonnage, fish hold capacity in cubic meters, and carrying capacity in metric tons and cubic meters; engine horsepower; date and place where built; and type of fishing method or methods used. The required information shall be collected as part of existing information collections as described in this and other parts of the CFR.

(ii) IMO numbers. For the purpose of this section, an “IMO number” is the unique six or seven digit number issued for a vessel under the ship identification number scheme adopted by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and managed by the entity identified by the IMO (currently IHS Maritime) and is also known as a Lloyd's Register number.

(iii) Requirements for IMO numbers. The owner of a fishing vessel of the United States used for commercial fishing for tuna and tuna-like species in the IATTC Convention Area shall ensure that an IMO number has been issued for the vessel if the vessel's Certificate of Documentation issued under 46 CFR part 67 indicates that the vessel's total internal volume is 100 gross register tons or greater or 100 gross tonnage or greater. In addition, the owner of a fishing vessel of the United States engaging in fishing activities for tuna or tuna-like species in the IATTC Convention Area, and for which a high seas fishing permit under § 300.333 is required, shall ensure that an IMO number has been issued for the vessel if the vessel's total internal volume is less than 100 gross registered tons or less than 100 gross tons, but equal to or greater than 12 meters in overall length, as indicated in the vessel's Certificate of Documentation issued under 46 CFR part 67 or State documentation. A vessel owner may request that an IMO number be issued for a vessel by following the instructions given by the administrator of the IMO ship identification number scheme; those instructions are currently available on the website of IHS Markit, https://imonumbers.lrfairplay.com/.

(iv) Request for exemption. In the event that a fishing vessel owner, after following the instructions given by the designated manager of the IMO ship identification number scheme, is unable to ensure that an IMO number is issued for the fishing vessel, the fishing vessel owner may request an exemption from the requirement from the Regional Administrator. The request must be sent by mail to NMFS HMS Branch, West Coast Region, 501 W Ocean Blvd., Suite 4200, Long Beach, CA 90802, or by email to , and must include the vessel's name, the vessel's official number, a description of the steps taken to request an IMO number, and a description of any responses from the administrator of the IMO ship identification number scheme.

(v) Exemption process. Upon receipt of a request for an exemption under paragraph (b)(3)(iv) of this section, the Regional Administrator will, to the extent he or she determines appropriate, assist the fishing vessel owner in requesting an IMO number. If the Regional Administrator determines that the fishing vessel owner has followed all appropriate procedures and yet is unable to obtain an IMO number for the fishing vessel, he or she will issue an exemption from the requirements of paragraph (b)(3)(iii) of this section for the vessel and its owner and notify the owner of the exemption. The Regional Administrator may limit the duration of the exemption. The Regional Administrator may rescind an exemption at any time. If an exemption is rescinded, the fishing vessel owner must comply with the requirements of paragraph (b)(3)(iii) of this section within 30 days of being notified of the rescission. If the ownership of a fishing vessel changes, an exemption issued to the former fishing vessel owner becomes void.

(4) Purse seine Vessel Register listing. For a tuna purse seine vessel to be listed on the Vessel Register and to be categorized as either “active” or “inactive” in the following calendar year, the vessel owner or managing owner must submit to the Regional Administrator the required permit applications, written notifications, and fees as described under § 216.24(b) of this title and under paragraphs (b)(4)(ii) and (iii) of this section as well as payment of the vessel assessment fee, where applicable, to the IATTC.

(i) Restrictions. The following restrictions apply:

(A) The cumulative carrying capacity of all tuna purse seine vessels on the Vessel Register may not exceed 31,866 cubic meters in a given year; and

(B) A purse seine vessel in excess of 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity may not be added to active status on the Vessel Register unless the captain of the vessel has obtained a valid operator permit under § 216.24(b)(2) of this title.

(ii) Active status. As early as August 1 of each year, vessel owners or managing owners may request that a purse seine vessel qualified to be listed on the Vessel Register under paragraph (b)(2) of this section be categorized as active for the following calendar year. To request a purse seine vessel in excess of 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity be listed on the Vessel Register and be categorized as active, the vessel owner or managing owner must submit to the Regional Administrator the vessel permit application and payment of the permit application fee and submit to the IATTC payment of the vessel assessment fee.

(A) To request a purse seine vessel of 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity or less be listed on the Vessel Register and be categorized as active, the vessel owner or managing owner must submit to the HMS Branch written notification including, but not limited to, a vessel photograph, the vessel information as described under paragraph (b)(3) of this section, and the owner or managing owner's signature, business email address, and business telephone and fax numbers. If a purse seine vessel of 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity or less is required by the Agreement on the IDCP to carry an observer, the vessel owner or managing owner must also submit payment of the vessel assessment fee to the IATTC.

(B) The Regional Administrator must receive the vessel permit application or written notification and payment of the permit application fee and payment confirmation of the vessel assessment fee no later than September 15 for vessels for which a DML was requested for the following year and no later than November 30 for vessels for which a DML was not requested for the following year. Submission of the vessel permit application or written notification and payment of the vessel assessment fee and permit application fee will be interpreted by the Regional Administrator as a request for a vessel to be categorized as active.

(iii) Inactive status.

(A) From August 1 through November 30 of each year, vessel owners or managing owners may request that purse seine vessels qualified to be listed on the Vessel Register under paragraph (b)(2) of this section be categorized as inactive for the following calendar year. To request a purse seine vessel in excess of 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity be listed on the Vessel Register and categorized as inactive for the following calendar year, the vessel owner or managing owner must submit to the IATTC payment of the associated vessel assessment fee. Payment of the vessel assessment fee consistent with inactive status will be interpreted by the Regional Administrator as a request for the vessel to be categorized as inactive.

(B) To request a tuna purse seine vessel of 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity or less be listed on the Vessel Register and categorized as inactive for the following calendar year, the vessel owner or managing owner must submit to the HMS Branch a written notification including, but not limited to, the vessel name and registration number and the vessel owner or managing owner's name, signature, business address, business email address, and business telephone and fax numbers. Payment of the vessel assessment fee is not required for vessels of 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity or less to be categorized as inactive.

(C) At any time during the year, a vessel owner or managing owner may request that a tuna purse seine vessel qualified to be listed on the Vessel Register under paragraph (b)(2) of this section be categorized as inactive for the remainder of the calendar year, provided the cumulative carrying capacity described in (b)(4)(i)(A) of this section is not exceeded. To request a purse seine vessel in excess of 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity be listed on the Vessel Register and categorized as inactive for the remainder of the calendar year, the vessel owner or managing owner must submit to the IATTC payment of the associated vessel assessment fee. To request a tuna purse seine vessel of 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity or less be listed on the Vessel Register and categorized as inactive for the remainder of the calendar year, the vessel owner or managing owner must submit to the HMS Branch written notification as described in (b)(4)(iii)(A) of this section. Payment of the vessel assessment fee is not required for such vessels.

(D) The vessel owner or managing owner of a purse seine vessel listed as active on the Vessel Register that has sunk may request the vessel be listed as sunk and categorized as inactive on the Vessel Register. To request the vessel be listed as sunk and categorized as inactive on the Vessel Register, the vessel owner or managing owner must submit to the HMS Branch written notification within 30 days of the vessel's sinking. Written notification shall include, but is not limited to, the vessel name, date of sinking, registration number, the vessel owner or managing owner's name, signature, business address, business email address, and business telephone and fax numbers. For subsequent calendar years, vessel assessment fee payment shall be made as described in paragraph (b)(4)(iii) of this section.

(E) A vessel listed as inactive or sunk on the Vessel Register for more than two consecutive calendar years after January 21, 2020 requesting active status will be prioritized according to the hierarchy under paragraph (b)(4)(v) of this section. A vessel listed as inactive or sunk on the Vessel Register for more than two consecutive calendar years after January 21, 2020 will be removed from the Vessel Register as described in paragraph (b)(5)(ix) of this section.

(iv) Frivolous requests.

(A) Except as described under paragraph (b)(4)(iv)(B) of this section, requests for active status under paragraph (b)(4)(ii) of this section will be considered frivolous if, for a vessel categorized as active on the Vessel Register in a given calendar year:

(1) Less than 20 percent of the vessel's total landings, by weight, in that same year is comprised of tuna harvested by purse seine in the Convention Area; or

(2) The vessel did not fish for tuna at all in the Convention Area in that same year.

(B) Requests described under paragraph (b)(4)(iv)(A) of this section will not be considered frivolous requests if:

(1) The vessel's catch pattern fell within the criteria described in paragraph (b)(4)(iv)(A) of this section as a result of force majeure or other extraordinary circumstances as determined by the Regional Administrator; or

(2) The vessel's carrying capacity is 400 st (362.8 mt) or less and there was at least one documented landing of tuna caught by the vessel in the Convention Area in the calendar year prior to the year in which the request is made and through November 15 of the year of the request, unless the vessel was not able to make a landing as a result of force majeure or other extraordinary circumstances as determined by the Regional Administrator.

(3) The vessel was listed as inactive before January 21, 2020 and has not been listed as inactive for more than two consecutive calendar years since January 21, 2020.

(v) Listing hierarchy. Requests for active status and inactive status will be prioritized according to the following hierarchy:

(A) Requests received for replacement vessels with a carrying capacity equal to or less than a vessel removed from the Vessel Register under a request described in paragraph (b)(9) of this section;

(B) Requests received for vessels that were categorized as active in the previous year, unless the request was determined to be frivolous by the Regional Administrator under paragraph (b)(4)(ii) of this section;

(C) Requests received for vessels that were categorized as inactive under paragraph (b)(4)(iii) of this section in the previous year, unless that vessel has been listed as inactive or sunk under paragraph (b)(4)(iii) of this section for more than 2 consecutive calendar years after January 21, 2020;

(D) Requests for vessels not described in paragraphs (b)(4)(v)(A) through (C) of this section, and requests, if applicable, by replacement vessels for the portion of the carrying capacity greater than the amount authorized to the vessel that was replaced under paragraph (b)(9) of this section, will be prioritized on a first-come, first-served basis according to the date and time of receipt, provided that the associated vessel assessment fee is paid by the applicable deadline described in § 216.24(b)(6)(iii) of this title; and

(E) Requests received from owners or managing owners of vessels that were determined by the Regional Administrator to have made a frivolous request for active status under paragraph (b)(4)(iv) of this section or that have been listed as inactive or sunk as described in paragraph (b)(4)(iii) of this section for more than two consecutive calendar years after January 21, 2020.

(5) Removal from the vessel register. A vessel may be removed from the Vessel Register by the Regional Administrator:

(i) If the vessel has sunk, and the vessel owner or managing owner has not submitted written notification as described in paragraph (b)(4)(iii)(D) of this section;

(ii) Upon written request by the vessel's owner or managing owner;

(iii) Following a final agency action on a permit sanction for a violation; and

(iv) For failure to pay a penalty or for default on a penalty payment agreement resulting from a final agency action for a violation.

(v) If the U.S. Maritime Administration or the U.S. Coast Guard notifies NMFS that:

(A) The owner has submitted an application for transfer of the vessel to foreign registry and flag; or

(B) The documentation for the vessel will be or has been deleted for any reason.

(vi) If the vessel does not have a valid state registration or U.S. Coast Guard certificate of documentation;

(vii) For tuna purse seine vessels, upon receipt of written notification from the owner or managing owner of the intent to transfer the vessel to foreign registry and flag, as described in paragraph (b)(8) of this section; or

(viii) For tuna purse seine vessels, if the request for active status on the Vessel Register has been determined to be a frivolous request; or

(ix) If the vessel has been listed as inactive or sunk on the Vessel Register for more than two consecutive calendar years after January 21, 2020.

(6) Process for Removal from the Vessel Register. When a vessel is removed from the Vessel Register under paragraph (b)(5) of this section, the Regional Administrator shall promptly notify the vessel owner in writing of the removal and the reasons therefor. For a removal from the Vessel Register under § 300.22(b)(5)(iii), the Regional Administrator will not accept a request to reinstate the vessel to the Vessel Register for the term of the permit sanction. For a removal from the Vessel Register under § 300.22(b)(5)(iv), the Regional Administrator will not accept a request to reinstate the vessel to the Vessel Register until such time as payment is made on the penalty or penalty agreement, or such other duration as NOAA and the vessel owner may agree upon.

(7) Procedures for replacing purse seine vessels removed from the Vessel Register.

(i) A purse seine vessel that was previously listed on the Vessel Register, but not included for a given year or years, may be added back to the Vessel Register and categorized as inactive at any time during the year, provided the cumulative carrying capacity described in (b)(4)(i)(A) of this section is not exceeded. The owner or managing owner of a purse seine vessel of more than 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity must pay the vessel assessment fee associated with inactive status. The owner or managing owner of a purse seine vessel of 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity or less must submit written notification as described in paragraph (b)(4)(iii) of this section.

(ii) A purse seine vessel may be added to the Vessel Register and categorized as active in order to replace a vessel or vessels removed from active or inactive status under paragraph (b)(5) of this section, provided the total carrying capacity described in (b)(4)(i)(A) of this section is not exceeded and the owner submits a complete request under paragraph (b)(7)(iv) or (v) of this section.

(iii) Notification of available capacity after a purse seine vessel has been removed from the Vessel Register will be conducted as follows:

(A) After a purse seine vessel categorized as active or inactive is removed from the Vessel Register, the Regional Administrator will notify owners or managing owners of vessels eligible for, but not included on, the Vessel Register that replacement capacity is available on the active or inactive list of the Vessel Register.

(B) When a purse seine vessel categorized as active or inactive on the Vessel Register has been removed from the Vessel Register under the procedures described in (b)(9) of this section, the Regional Administrator will not make available the capacity of the vessel removed from the Vessel Register, and will reserve that capacity for a replacement vessel for a period of 2 years from the date of notification described in (b)(9)(iv) of this section. The replacement vessel will be eligible to be listed as active on the Vessel Register at the same carrying capacity or less as that of the vessel it is replacing. If the replacement vessel has a carrying capacity greater than the vessel being replaced, the vessel owner or managing owner may request additional carrying capacity allocated to the vessel in accordance with paragraph (b)(4)(v)(D) of this section. If additional carrying capacity is not available, the replacement vessel must reduce its carrying capacity to no more than the previously authorized carrying capacity amount for the vessel being replaced by complying with the protocol for sealing wells adopted by the IATTC, prior to it being listed as active on the Vessel Register. Such a vessel may apply for additional carrying capacity as it becomes available under the procedures described in (b)(4)(v)(D) of this section.

(iv) Vessel owners or managing owners may request a purse seine vessel of 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity or less be categorized as active to replace a vessel or vessels removed from the Vessel Register by submitting to the HMS Branch written notification as described in paragraph (b)(4)(ii) of this section and, only if the vessel is required by the Agreement on the IDCP to carry an observer, payment of the vessel assessment fee to the IATTC within 10 business days after submission of the written notification. The replacement vessel will be eligible to be categorized as active on the Vessel Register at the same carrying capacity or less as that of the vessel or vessels it is replacing. If the replacement vessel has a carrying capacity greater than the vessel being replaced, the vessel owner or managing owner may request additional carrying capacity allocated to the vessel in accordance with paragraph (b)(4)(v)(D) of this section. If additional carrying capacity is not available, the replacement vessel must reduce its capacity to no more than the previously authorized carrying capacity for the vessel or vessels being replaced by complying with the protocol for sealing wells adopted by the IATTC, prior to it being listed as active on the Vessel Register. Such a vessel may apply for additional carrying capacity as it becomes available. Payments received will be subject to a 10 percent surcharge for vessels that were listed as active on the Vessel Register in the previous calendar year, but not listed as inactive at the beginning of the calendar year for which active status was requested.

(v) Vessel owners or managing owners may request a purse seine vessel in excess of 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity be categorized as active to replace a vessel or vessels removed from the Vessel Register by submitting to the Regional Administrator the vessel permit application as described under § 216.24(b) of this title and payment of the vessel assessment fee to the IATTC and payment of the permit application fee to the Regional Administrator within 10 business days after submission of the vessel permit application for the replacement vessel. The replacement vessel will be eligible to be categorized as active on the Vessel Register at the same carrying capacity as that of the vessel or vessels it is replacing. If the replacement vessel has a carrying capacity greater than the vessel being replaced, the vessel owner or managing owner may request additional carrying capacity allocated to the vessel in accordance with paragraph (b)(4)(v)(D) of this section. If additional carrying capacity is not available, the replacement vessel must reduce its carrying capacity to no more than the previously authorized carrying capacity for the vessel or vessels being replaced by complying with the protocol for sealing wells adopted by the IATTC, prior to it being listed as active on the Vessel Register. Such a vessel may apply for additional carrying capacity as it becomes available. The replacement vessel will also only be eligible to be categorized as active on the Vessel Register if the captain of the replacement vessel possesses an operator permit under § 216.24(b) of this title. Payments received will be subject to a 10 percent surcharge for vessels that were listed as active on the Vessel Register in the previous calendar year, but not listed as inactive at the beginning of the calendar year for which active status was requested.

(vi) The Regional Administrator will forward requests to replace vessels removed from the Vessel Register within 15 days of receiving each request.

(8) Transfers to a foreign registry and flag. The owner or managing owner of a purse seine vessel listed on the Vessel Register must provide written notification to the Regional Administrator prior to submitting an application for transfer of the vessel to foreign registry and flag. Written notification must be submitted to the Regional Administrator at least 10 business days prior to submission of the application for transfer. The written notification must include the vessel name and registration number; the expected date that the application for transfer will be submitted; and the vessel owner or managing owner's name and signature. Vessels that require approval by the U.S. Maritime Administration prior to transfer of the vessel to foreign registry and flag will not be subject to the notification requirement described in this paragraph.

(9) Aging fleet provision.

(i) The vessel owner or managing owner of a purse seine vessel listed as active or inactive on the Vessel Register may request to replace the current vessel with a new or used vessel without losing the vessel's placement in the hierarchy of requests for active status as described in paragraph (b)(4)(v) of this section. The replacement vessel will be eligible to be listed as active on the Vessel Register at the same carrying capacity or less as that of the vessel it is replacing. If the replacement vessel has a carrying capacity greater than the vessel being replaced, the vessel owner or managing owner may request additional carrying capacity be allocated to the vessel in accordance with paragraph (b)(4)(v)(D) of this section. If additional carrying capacity is not available at the time the request to be listed as active on the Vessel Register is received by the Regional Administrator, the replacement vessel must reduce its carrying capacity to no more than the previously authorized carrying capacity of the vessel being replaced by complying with the protocol for sealing wells adopted by the IATTC, prior to it being listed as active on the Vessel Register. Such a vessel may apply for additional carrying capacity as it becomes available under the procedures described in paragraph (b)(4)(v)(D) of this section. This aging fleet provision may be used only once per vessel by the vessel owner or managing owner.

(ii) A request made under this provision may include a request to remove the vessel from the Vessel Register. The Regional Administrator will ensure the amount of carrying capacity equal to or less of the vessel being replaced will be available for the replacement vessel for up to 2 years from the date of notification described in paragraph (b)(9)(iv) of this section.

(iii) To request a vessel be replaced under this provision, the vessel owner or managing owner must submit to the HMS Branch written notification including, but not limited to, the vessel name and registration number, the vessel owner or managing owner's name, signature, business address, business email address, and business telephone and fax numbers, and the expected month and year the replacement vessel will be ready to fish in the Convention Area.

(iv) Within 30 days of receiving each request described in (b)(9)(iii) of this section, the Regional Administrator shall notify the vessel owner or managing owner in writing whether the request has been accepted or denied, and the reasons therefore.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 66 FR 49320, Sept. 27, 2001; 70 FR 19010, Apr. 12, 2005; 74 FR 1618, Jan. 13, 2009; 76 FR 287, Jan. 4, 2011; 76 FR 68337, Nov. 4, 2011; 79 FR 56018, Sept. 18, 2014; 81 FR 1879, Jan. 14, 2016; 81 FR 36184, June 6, 2016; 83 FR 15509, Apr. 11, 2018; 84 FR 70044, Dec. 20, 2019; 85 FR 8199, Feb. 13, 2020; 85 FR 35380, June 10, 2020; 85 FR 29669, May 18, 2020; 84 FR 70047, Dec. 20, 2019]

§ 300.23 Persons and vessels exempted.

This subpart does not apply to:

(a) Any person or vessel authorized by the IATTC, the Assistant Administrator, or any state of the United States to engage in fishing for research purposes.

(b) Any person or vessel engaged in sport fishing for personal use.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 74 FR 1620, Jan. 13, 2009]

§ 300.24 Prohibitions.

In addition to the prohibitions in § 300.4, it is unlawful for any person or vessel subject to the jurisdiction of the United States to:

(a) Land any species of tuna during the closed season for that species in excess of the amount allowed by the Regional Administrator.

(b) [Reserved]

(c) Use tender vessels in the Convention Area.

(d) Transship purse seine-caught tuna at sea within the Convention Area.

(e) Fail to retain any bigeye, skipjack, or yellowfin tuna caught by a fishing vessel of the United States of class size 4-6 using purse seine gear in the Convention Area as required under § 300.27(a).

(f) When using purse seine gear to fish for tuna in the Convention Area, fail to release any fish species (excluding mobulid rays, tuna, tuna-like species, and those being retained for consumption aboard the vessel) as soon as practicable after being identified on board the vessel during the brailing operation as required in § 300.27(b).

(g) [Reserved]

(h) Fail to use the sea turtle handling, release, and resuscitation procedures in § 300.27(c).

(i) Fail to report information when requested by the Regional Administrator under § 300.22.

(j) Fail to provide written notification as described under § 300.22(b)(8) to the Regional Administrator at least 10 business days prior to submission of an application to transfer a purse seine vessel listed on the Vessel Register to foreign registry and flag, unless transfer of the vessel requires approval by the U.S. Maritime Administration.

(k) Use a U.S. fishing vessel over 24 meters in length to retain on board, transship, or land bigeye tuna caught by longline gear in the Convention Area or to fish in contravention of § 300.25(a)(4)(i) or (ii).

(l) Use a U.S. fishing vessel over 24 meters in overall length to fish with longline gear in the Pacific Ocean both inside and outside the Convention Area on the same fishing trip in contravention of § 300.25(a)(4)(iii).

(m) Fail to stow gear as required in § 300.25(a)(4)(iv) or (e)(6).

(n) Use a fishing vessel of class size 4-6 to fish with purse seine gear in the Convention Area in contravention of § 300.25(e)(1), (2), or (5).

(o) Use a U.S. longline or purse seine fishing vessel used to fish for HMS within one nautical mile of an anchored data buoy while the fishing vessel is in the Convention Area in contravention of § 300.25(f)(1).

(p) Use a U.S. fishing vessel used for fishing for HMS, or any gear, equipment, or watercraft deployed by such a fishing vessel, to interact with a data buoy in the Convention Area in contravention of § 300.25(f)(2).

(q) Remove from the water a data buoy and place it on board or tow a data buoy with a U.S. fishing vessel used for fishing for HMS while the vessel is in the Convention Area without authorization by the owner of the data buoy or the owner's authorized representative in contravention of § 300.25(f)(3).

(r) In the event of an entanglement of a data buoy with a U.S. fishing vessel, or its fishing gear, equipment, or associated watercraft, used for fishing for HMS in the Convention Area, fail to promptly remove the data buoy with as little damage to the data buoy and its mooring and anchor lines as possible, in contravention of § 300.25(f)(4).

(s) Fail to take all reasonable measures to avoid fishing gear entanglement or interaction with drifting data buoys in contravention of § 300.25(f)(5).

(t) Use a U.S. fishing vessel to fish for HMS in the Convention Area and retain on board, transship, land, store, sell, or offer for sale any part or whole carcass of an oceanic whitetip shark (Carcharhinus longimanus) or fail to release unharmed, to the extent practicable, all oceanic whitetip sharks when brought alongside the vessel in contravention of § 300.27(d).

(u) Use a United States commercial fishing vessel in the Convention Area to target, retain on board, transship, or land Pacific bluefin tuna in contravention of § 300.25(g)(2) through (4) and (7).

(v) Fail to maintain, submit, or ensure submission of a log that includes all the information required in § 300.22(a).

(w) Set or attempt to set a purse seine on or around a whale shark (Rhincodon typus) in contravention of § 300.27(g).

(x) Fail to release a whale shark encircled in a purse seine net of a fishing vessel as required in § 300.27(h).

(y) Fail to install, activate, or operate a VMS unit as required in § 300.26(c).

(z) In the event of VMS unit failure or interruption; fail to repair or replace a VMS unit; fail to notify the Special-Agent-In-Charge, NOAA Office of Law Enforcement, Pacific Islands Division (or designee); and follow the instructions provided; or otherwise fail to act as provided in § 300.26(c)(4).

(aa) Disable, destroy, damage or operate improperly a VMS unit installed under § 300.26, or attempt to do any of the same, or fail to ensure that its operation is not impeded or interfered with, as provided in § 300.26(e).

(bb) Fail to make a VMS unit installed under § 300.26 or the position data obtained from it available for inspection, as provided in § 300.26 (f) and (g).

(cc) To retain on board, transship, store, land, sell, or offer for sale any part or whole carcass of a mobulid ray, as described in § 300.27(i).

(dd) Fail to handle or release a mobulid ray as required in § 300.27(j).

(ee) Fail to ensure characters of a unique code are marked indelibly on a FAD deployed or modified on or after January 1, 2017, in accordance with § 300.28(a)(2).

(ff) Fail to provide information to an observer or record or report data on FADs as required in § 300.22(a)(3).

(gg) Use a commercial purse seine or longline fishing vessel of the United States to retain on board, transship, store, or land any part or whole carcass of a silky shark (Carcharhinus falciformis) in contravention of § 300.27(e).

(hh) Fail to follow observer safety requirements as specified under § 300.29.

(ii) Fail to handle or release a shark as required in § 300.27(k).

(jj) Use a shark line in contravention of § 300.27(l).

(kk) When deploying a FAD, activate the transmission equipment attached to a FAD in a location other than on a purse seine vessel at sea as required in § 300.28(b).

(ll) Fail to turn on the tracking equipment for an Active FAD before deploying at sea as required in § 300.28(b).

(mm) Deploy a FAD in the IATTC Convention Area that is not an Active FAD.

(nn) Have more Active FADs than specified in § 300.28(c) in the IATTC Convention Area at any one time.

(oo) Deploy a FAD in the IATTC Convention Area during a period of 15 days prior to the start of the selected closure period in contravention of § 300.28(d)(1).

(pp) Fail to timely remove from the water a number of FADs in the IATTC Convention Area equal to the number of FADs set upon by the vessel during the 15 days prior to the start of the selected closure period as required in § 300.28(d)(2).

(qq) Deploy, or have onboard a vessel, a FAD in the IATTC Convention Area that fails to comply with the FAD design requirements in § 300.28(e).

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996]

§ 300.25 Fisheries management.

(a) Longline tuna catch limits.

(1) Fishing seasons for all tuna species begin on 0000 hours Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) January 1 and end either on 2400 hours UTC December 31 or when NMFS closes the fishery for a specific species.

(2) For calendar year 2021, there is a limit of 750 metric tons of bigeye tuna that may be caught by longline gear in the Convention Area by U.S. commercial fishing vessels that are over 24 meters in overall length. The catch limit within a calendar year is subject to increase if the United States receives a transfer of catch limit from another IATTC member or cooperating non-member, per paragraph (a)(5) of this section.

(3) NMFS will project a date the limit of bigeye tuna established under paragraph (a)(2) of this section will be reached (i.e., a closure date) by monitoring longline landings, data submitted in logbooks, and other available information. NMFS will publish a notice in the Federal Register at least 7 calendar days in advance of that projected closure date announcing that the limit has been reached. The Federal Register notice will specify that the restrictions described in paragraph (a)(4) of this section will be in effect through the end of the calendar year.

(4) Once the closure date is announced, pursuant to paragraph (a)(3) of this section the following restrictions will apply during the period specified in the announcement:

(i) A fishing vessel of the United States over 24 meters in overall length may not be used to retain on board, transship, or land bigeye tuna captured by longline gear in the Convention Area, except as follows:

(A) Any bigeye tuna already on board a U.S. fishing vessel upon the effective closure date may be retained on board, transshipped, and/or landed, to the extent authorized by applicable laws and regulations, provided that the bigeye tuna is landed within 14 days after the effective closure date.

(B) The 14-day limit is waived in the case of a U.S. fishing vessel that has already declared to NMFS, pursuant to § 665.803(a) of this title, that the current trip type is shallow-setting. However, the number of bigeye tuna retained on board, transshipped, or landed must not exceed the number on board the vessel upon the effective closure date, as recorded by the NMFS observer on board the vessel.

(ii) Bigeye tuna caught by a vessel of the United States over 24 meters in overall length and using longline gear in the Convention Area may not be transshipped to a fishing vessel unless that fishing vessel is operated in compliance with a valid permit issued under § 660.707 or § 665.801 of this title.

(iii) A fishing vessel of the United States over 24 meters in overall length may not be used to fish in the Pacific Ocean using longline gear both inside and outside the Convention Area during the same fishing trip. The only exceptions are: a fishing trip during which the closure date was announced under paragraph (a)(3) of this section, and a trip for which a declaration has been made to NMFS, pursuant to § 665.803(a) of this title, that the current trip is shallow-setting.

(iv) If a fishing vessel of the United States over 24 meters in overall length is used to fish in the Pacific Ocean using longline gear outside the Convention Area and the vessel enters the Convention Area at any time during an effective closure period on the same fishing trip, the longline gear on the fishing vessel must be stowed in a manner so as not to be readily available for fishing. Specifically, the hooks, branch or dropper lines, and floats used to buoy the mainline must be stowed and not available for immediate use, and any power-operated mainline hauler on deck must be covered in such a manner that it is not readily available for use. This provision does not apply to trips in which vessels have made a declaration to NMFS, pursuant to § 665.803(a) of this title, that the trip type is shallow-setting.

(5) If the United States engages in a transfer of a bigeye tuna catch limit with another IATTC member or cooperating non-member, NMFS will publish a notice in the Federal Register announcing the new catch limit that is available to U.S. commercial fishing vessels that are over 24 meters in overall length. All restrictions described in paragraphs (a)(1) and (3) through (4) of this section will continue to apply.

(b) Use of tender vessels. No person subject to these regulations may use a tender vessel in the Convention Area.

(c) Transshipments at sea. No person subject to these regulations may transship purse seine-caught tuna from one vessel to another vessel at sea within the Convention Area.

(d) [Reserved]

(e) Purse seine closures -

(1) 72-day closure. A commercial purse seine fishing vessel of the United States that is of class size 4-6 (more than 182 metric tons carrying capacity) may not be used to fish with purse seine gear in the Convention Area for 72 days in calendar year 2021 during one of the following two periods:

(i) From 0000 hours Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) July 29 to 2400 hours UTC October 8, or

(ii) From 0000 hours UTC November 9 to 2400 hours UTC January 19 of the following year.

(2) Choice of closure period. A vessel owner, manager, or association representative of a vessel that is subject to the requirements of paragraph (e)(1) of this section must provide written notification to the Regional Administrator declaring to which one of the two closure periods identified in paragraph (e)(1) of this section his or her vessel will adhere in that year. This written notification must be submitted by fax at (562) 980-4047 or email at and must be received no later than July 1 prior to the first closure period within a calendar year. The written notification must include the vessel name and registration number, the closure dates that will be adhered to by that vessel, and the vessel owner or managing owner's name, signature, business address, and business telephone number.

(3) Default closure period. If written notification is not submitted per paragraph (e)(2) of this section for a vessel subject to the requirements under paragraph (e)(1) of this section, that vessel must adhere to the second closure period under paragraph (e)(1)(ii) of this section.

(4) Request for exemption due to force majeure. A request for exemption due to force majeure must be made to the Sustainable Fisheries Division within 20 calendar days after the vessel has been unable to proceed to sea for 72 days by fax at (562) 980-4047 or emailed to . The request must include the name and official number of the vessel, vessel owner or manager's name and signature, and evidence to support the request, which may include but is not limited to photographs, repair bills, certificates of departure from port, and in the case of a marine casualty, a completed copy of the U.S. Coast Guard Form CG-2692A (See 46 CFR 4.05-10).

(i) If accepted by the Sustainable Fisheries Division, the request for exemption due to force majeure will be forwarded to the IATTC Director. If declined by the Sustainable Fisheries Division, within 10 days of the date of that rejection, the applicant may give additional information or documentation to the Regional Administrator with a request that the initial decision be reconsidered by fax at (562) 980-4047 or email to ; the Regional Administrator shall respond within 14 business days.

(ii) If the request for an exemption due to force majeure is accepted by the IATTC, the vessel must observe a closure period of 40 consecutive days in the same year during which the force majeure event occurred, in one of the two closure periods described in paragraph (e)(1) of this section.

(iii) If the request for an exemption due to force majeure is accepted by the IATTC and the vessel has already observed a closure period described in paragraph (e)(1) of this section in the same year during which the force majeure event occurred, the vessel must observe a closure period of 40 consecutive days the following year the force majeure event occurred, in one of the two closure periods described in paragraph (e)(1) of this section.

(iv) Any purse seine vessel, for which a force majeure request is accepted by the IATTC, must carry an observer aboard authorized pursuant to the International Agreement on the International Dolphin Conservation Program.

(5) 31-day area closure. A fishing vessel of the United States of class size 4-6 (more than 182 metric tons carrying capacity) may not be used from 0000 hours on October 9, 2021, to 2400 hours on November 8, 2021, to fish with purse seine gear within the area bounded at the east and west by 96° and 110° W longitude and bounded at the north and south by 4° N and 3° S latitude.

(6) Requirement to stow gear. At all times while a vessel is in a time/area closed period established under paragraphs (e)(1) or (5) of this section, unless fishing under the exception under paragraph (e)(4) of this section, the fishing gear of the vessel must be stowed in a manner as not to be readily available for fishing. In particular, the boom must be lowered as far as possible so that the vessel cannot be used for fishing, but so that the skiff is accessible for use in emergency situations; the helicopter, if any, must be tied down; and launches must be secured.

(f) Restrictions on fishing in proximity to data buoys.

(1) A longline or purse seine fishing vessel of the United States may not be used to fish for HMS within one nautical mile of an anchored data buoy in the Convention Area. The one-nautical-mile distance shall be measured from the data buoy to the nearest portion of the fishing vessel or items associated with the fishing vessel, such as gear or watercraft deployed by the fishing vessel, to the data buoy. This prohibition shall not apply if and when the fishing vessel is operated as part of a scientific research program that has received specific authorization by the IATTC or is conducting work on behalf of the IATTC.

(2) A fishing vessel of the United States used to fish for HMS, or any fishing gear, equipment, or watercraft deployed by such a fishing vessel, may not be used to interact with a data buoy while the fishing vessel is in the Convention Area. Interact with a data buoy means to engage in conduct that could impair the functioning of a data buoy through actions that include but that are not limited to the following: encircling the buoy with fishing gear; tying up to or attaching the vessel, or any fishing gear, part or portion of the fishing vessel, including equipment such as watercraft, to a data buoy or its mooring; or cutting a data buoy anchor line.

(3) A vessel operator, crew member, or other persons on board a fishing vessel of the United States that is used to fish for HMS may not remove a data buoy or any parts thereof from the water and place it on board the fishing vessel or tow a data buoy when in the Convention Area unless authorized to do so by the owner of the data buoy or an authorized representative or agent of the owner. When practicable, advance written authorization must be available onboard a U.S. fishing vessel that has taken on board or tows a data buoy. In all other cases, a written document (e.g., fax, email) verifying the authorization must be obtained by the vessel owner or operator within 15 days of landing.

(4) In the event that a fishing vessel of the United States that is used to fish for HMS or any of its fishing gear, equipment, or associated watercraft, becomes entangled with a data buoy while the fishing vessel is in the Convention Area, the owner and operator of the fishing vessel must promptly remove the entangled fishing vessel, fishing gear, equipment, or associated watercraft with as little damage to the data buoy and its mooring and anchor lines as possible.

(5) A vessel operator, crew member, or other persons on board a fishing vessel of the United States that is used to fish for HMS must take all reasonable measures to avoid fishing gear entanglement or interaction with drifting data buoys.

(g) Pacific bluefin tuna (Thunnus orientalis) commercial catch limits in the eastern Pacific Ocean for 2021. The following is applicable to the U.S. commercial fishery for Pacific bluefin tuna in the Convention Area in the year 2021.

(1) All commercial fishing vessels of the United States combined may capture, retain, transship, or land no more than 425 metric tons.

(2) A 20-metric ton trip limit will be in effect until any of the following criteria are met:

(i) If NMFS anticipates cumulative catch will reach 250 metric tons during January through March, a 15-metric ton trip limit will be in effect upon the effective date provided in the actual notice, in accordance with paragraph (g)(6) of this section. If NMFS anticipates cumulative catch will reach 325 metric tons during January through March, a 2-metric ton trip limit will be in effect upon the effective date provided in the actual notice, in accordance with paragraph (g)(6) of this section.

(ii) If NMFS anticipates cumulative catch will reach 275 metric tons during April through June, a 15-metric ton trip limit will be in effect upon the effective date provided in the actual notice, in accordance with paragraph (g)(6) of this section. If NMFS anticipates cumulative catch will reach 350 metric tons during April through June, a 2-metric ton trip limit will be in effect upon the effective date provided in the actual notice, in accordance with paragraph (g)(6) of this section.

(iii) If NMFS anticipates cumulative catch will reach 300 metric tons during July through September, a 15-metric ton trip limit will be in effect upon the effective date provided in the actual notice, in accordance with paragraph (g)(6) of this section. If NMFS anticipates cumulative catch will reach 375 metric tons during July through September, a 2-metric ton trip limit will be in effect upon the effective date provided in the actual notice, in accordance with paragraph (g)(6) of this section.

(iv) If NMFS anticipates cumulative catch will reach 325 metric tons during October through December, a 15-metric ton trip limit will be in effect upon the effective date provided in the actual notice, in accordance with paragraph (g)(6) of this section. If NMFS anticipates cumulative catch will reach 375 metric tons during October through December, a 2-metric ton trip limit will be in effect upon the effective date provided in the actual notice, in accordance with paragraph (g)(6) of this section.

(3) After NMFS determines that the catch limit under paragraph (g)(1) of this section is expected to be reached, NMFS will close the fishery effective upon the date provided in the actual notice, in accordance with paragraph (g)(6) of this section. Upon the effective date in the actual notice, targeting, retaining on board, transshipping, or landing Pacific bluefin tuna captured in the Convention Area shall be prohibited as described in paragraph (g)(4) of this section.

(4) Beginning on the date provided in the actual notice of the fishing closure announced under paragraph (g)(3) of this section, a commercial fishing vessel of the United States may not be used to target, retain on board, transship, or land Pacific bluefin tuna captured in the Convention Area through the end of the calendar year. Any Pacific bluefin tuna already on board a fishing vessel on the effective date of the notice may be retained on board, transshipped, and/or landed within 14 days after the effective date published in the fishing closure notice, to the extent authorized by applicable laws and regulations.

(5) If an inseason action taken under paragraph (g)(2), (3), or (4) of this section is based on overestimate of actual catch, NMFS will reverse that action in the timeliest possible manner, provided NMFS finds that reversing that action is consistent with the management objectives for the affected species. The fishery will reopen effective on the date provided in the actual notice in accordance with paragraph (g)(6) of this section.

(6) Inseason actions taken under paragraphs (g)(2), (3), (4), and (5) of this section will be by actual notice from posting on the NMFS website (https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/west-coast/sustainable-fisheries/pacific-bluefin-tuna-commercial-harvest-status) and a United States Coast Guard Notice to Mariners. The Notice to Mariners will be broadcast three times daily for 4 days. This action will also be published in the Federal Register as soon as practicable. Inseason actions will be effective from the time specified in the actual notice of the action (i.e., website posting and United States Coast Guard Notice to Mariners), or at the time the inseason action published in the Federal Register is effective, whichever comes first.

(7) If landing Pacific bluefin tuna into the State of California, fish landing receipts must be submitted to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife in accordance with the requirements of applicable State law and regulations, with the exception that the submission must occur within 24 hours of landing.

[64 FR 44431, Aug. 16, 1999]

§ 300.26 Vessel monitoring system (VMS).

(a) Assistant Director (AD), NOAA Office of Law Enforcement, Pacific Islands Division (or designee) and VMS Helpdesk contact information and business hours.

(1) The contact information for the AD for the purpose of this section: 1845 Wasp Blvd., Building 176, Honolulu, HI 96818; telephone: (808) 725-6100; facsimile: 808-725-6199; email: ; business hours: Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Hawaii Standard Time.

(2) The contact information for the NOAA Office of Law Enforcement's VMS Helpdesk is telephone: (888) 219-9228, ext. 2; email: . The business hours of the VMS Helpdesk are Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays, 7 a.m. to 11 p.m., Eastern Time.

(b) Applicability. This section applies to any U.S. commercial fishing vessel that is 24 meters or more in overall length and engaging in fishing activities for tuna or tuna-like species in the Convention Area, and for which either of the following permits is required: Pacific highly migratory species permit under § 660.707, or high seas fishing permit under § 300.13 of this part.

(c) Provisions for Installation, Activation and Operation -

(1) VMS Unit Installation. The vessel owner or operator must obtain and have installed on the fishing vessel, in accordance with instructions provided by the AD and the VMS unit manufacturer, a VMS unit that is type-approved by NOAA for fisheries in the IATTC Convention Area. The vessel owner or operator shall arrange for a NOAA-approved mobile communications service provider to receive and relay transmissions from the VMS unit to NOAA at a default reporting interval of at least once per hour. NOAA, the USCG, and other authorized entities are authorized to receive and relay transmissions from the VMS unit. The NOAA OLE VMS Helpdesk is available to provide instructions for VMS installation and a list of the current type-approved VMS units and mobile communication service providers.

(2) VMS Unit Activation. If the VMS unit has not yet been activated as described in this paragraph, or if the VMS unit has been newly installed or reinstalled, or if the mobile communications service provider has changed since the previous activation, or if directed by the AD, the vessel owner or operator must, prior to leaving port:

(i) Turn on the VMS unit to make it operational;

(ii) Submit a written activation report to the AD, via mail, facsimile or email, that includes the vessel's name; the vessel's official number; the VMS unit manufacturer and identification number; and telephone, facsimile or email contact information for the vessel owner or operator; and

(iii) Receive verbal or written confirmation from the AD that the proper VMS unit transmissions are being received from the VMS unit.

(3) VMS Unit Operation. The vessel owner and operator shall continuously operate the VMS unit at all times, except that the VMS unit may be shut down while the vessel is in port or otherwise not at sea, or if, after the end of the fishing season, the vessel will no longer be engaging in fishing activities in the Convention Area for which either a Pacific highly migratory species permit or a high seas fishing permit is required, provided that the owner or operator:

(i) Prior to shutting down the VMS unit, reports to the AD or the NOAA Office of Law Enforcement's VMS Helpdesk via facsimile, email, or web-form the following information: The intent to shut down the VMS unit; the vessel's name; the vessel's official number; an estimate for when the vessel's VMS may be turned back on; and telephone, facsimile or email contact information for the vessel owner or operator. In addition, the vessel owner or operator shall receive verbal or written confirmation from the AD before shutting down the VMS unit after the end of the fishing season; and

(ii) When turning the VMS unit back on, report to the AD or the NOAA Office of Law Enforcement's VMS Helpdesk, via mail, facsimile or email, the following information: That the VMS unit has been turned on; the vessel's name; the vessel's official number; and telephone, facsimile or email contact information for the vessel owner or operator; and

(iii) Prior to leaving port, receive verbal or written confirmation from the AD that proper transmissions are being received from the VMS unit.

(4) Failure of VMS unit. If the VMS unit has become inoperable or transmission of automatic position reports from the VMS unit has been interrupted, or if notified by NOAA or the USCG that automatic position reports are not being received from the VMS unit or that an inspection of the VMS unit has revealed a problem with the performance of the VMS unit, the vessel owner or operator shall comply with the following requirements:

(i) If the vessel is at port: The vessel owner or operator shall repair or replace the VMS unit and ensure it is operable before the vessel leaves port.

(ii) If the vessel is at sea: The vessel owner, operator, or designee shall contact the AD by telephone, facsimile, or email at the earliest opportunity during the AD's business hours and identify the caller and vessel. The vessel operator shall follow the instructions provided by the AD which could include, but are not limited to, ceasing fishing, stowing fishing gear, returning to port, and/or submitting periodic position reports at specified intervals by other means; and repair or replace the VMS unit and ensure it is operable before starting the next trip.

(5) Related VMS Requirements. Installing, carrying and operating a VMS unit in compliance with the requirements in part 300 of this title, part 660 of this title, or part 665 of this title relating to the installation, carrying, and operation of VMS units shall be deemed to satisfy the requirements of this paragraph (c), provided that the VMS unit is operated continuously and at all times while the vessel is at sea, unless the AD authorizes a VMS unit to be shut down as described in paragraph (c)(3) of this section, the VMS unit and mobile communications service providers are type-approved by NOAA for fisheries in IATTC Convention Area, and the specific requirements of paragraph (c)(4) of this section are followed. If the VMS unit is owned by NOAA, the requirement under paragraph (c)(4) of this section to repair or replace the VMS unit will be the responsibility of NOAA, but the vessel owner and operator shall be responsible for ensuring that the VMS unit is operable before leaving port or starting the next trip.

(d) Costs. The vessel owner and operator shall be responsible for all costs associated with the purchase, installation and maintenance of the VMS unit and for all charges levied by the mobile communications service provider as necessary to ensure the transmission of automatic position reports to NOAA as required in paragraph (c) of this section. However, if NOAA is paying for the VMS-associated costs because the VMS unit is carried and operated under a requirement of part 300 of this title, part 660 of this title, or part 665 of this title, the vessel owner and operator shall not be responsible for costs that those regulations specify are the responsibility of NOAA. In addition, NOAA is responsible for the cost of any temporary increase in the default reporting interval to support active enforcement investigations of specific vessels.

(e) Tampering. The vessel owner and operator must ensure that the VMS unit is not tampered with, disabled, destroyed, damaged or maintained improperly, and that its operation is not impeded or interfered with.

(f) Inspection. The vessel owner and operator must make the VMS unit, including its antenna, connectors and antenna cable, available for inspection by authorized officers.

(g) Access to data. The vessel owner and operator must make the vessel's position data obtained from the VMS unit or other means immediately and always available for inspection by NOAA personnel, USCG personnel, and authorized officers.

[80 FR 60538, Oct. 7, 2015]

§ 300.27 Incidental catch and tuna retention requirements.

(a) Tuna retention requirements for purse seine vessels. Bigeye, skipjack, and yellowfin tuna caught in the Convention Area by a fishing vessel of the United States of class size 4-6 (more than 182 metric tons carrying capacity) using purse seine gear must be retained on board and landed, except for fish deemed unfit for human consumption for reasons other than size. This requirement shall not apply to the last set of a trip if the available well capacity is insufficient to accommodate the entire catch.

(b) Release requirements for fish species on purse seine vessels. All purse seine vessels must release, as soon as practicable after being identified on board the vessel during the brailing operation, all billfish, rays (not including mobulid rays, which are subject to paragraph (i) of this section), dorado (Coryphaena hippurus), and other fish species. This requirement does not apply to tuna or tuna-like species, or to other fish retained for consumption aboard the vessel. Sharks caught in the IATTC Convention Area and that are not retained for consumption aboard the vessel must be released according to the requirements in paragraph (k) of this section. Tuna caught in the IATTC Convention Area are subject to the retention requirements in paragraph (a) of this section.

(c) Sea turtle handling and release. All purse seine vessels must apply special sea turtle handling and release requirements, as follows:

(1) Whenever a sea turtle is sighted in the net, a speedboat shall be stationed close to the point where the net is lifted out of the water to assist in release of the sea turtle;

(2) If a sea turtle is entangled in the net, net roll shall stop as soon as the sea turtle comes out of the water and shall not resume until the sea turtle has been disentangled and released;

(3) If, in spite of the measures taken under paragraphs (c)(1) and (c)(2) of this section, a sea turtle is accidentally brought on board the vessel alive and active, the vessel's engine shall be disengaged and the sea turtle shall be released as quickly as practicable;

(4) If a sea turtle brought on board under paragraph (c)(3) of this section is alive but comatose or inactive, the resuscitation procedures described in § 223.206(d)(1)(i)(B) of this title shall be used before release of the turtle.

(d) Oceanic whitetip shark restrictions. The crew, operator, or owner of a fishing vessel of the United States used to fish for HMS in the Convention Area shall be prohibited from retaining on board, transshipping, landing, storing, selling, or offering for sale any part or whole carcass of an oceanic whitetip shark (Carcharhinus longimanus) and must release unharmed, to the extent practicable, all oceanic whitetip sharks when brought alongside the vessel.

(e) Silky shark restrictions for purse seine vessels. The crew, operator, and owner of a commercial purse seine or longline fishing vessel of the United States used to fish for tuna or tuna-like species is prohibited from retaining on board, transshipping, storing, or landing any part or whole carcass of a silky shark (Carcharhinus falciformis) that is caught in the IATTC Convention Area, except as provided in paragraph (f) of this section.

(f) Exception for silky shark caught and frozen on purse seine vessels. In the case of a purse seine vessel operating in the IATTC Convention Area that catches a silky shark that is not seen during fishing operations and is delivered into the vessel hold, the silky shark may be stored on board and landed, but the vessel owner or operator must surrender the whole silky shark to the responsible government authority present at the point of landing. In U.S. ports the responsible governmental authority is the NOAA Office of Law Enforcement divisional office nearest to the port, or other authorized personnel. If no governmental authorities are available, the whole silky shark surrendered must not be sold or bartered but must be donated for purposes of domestic human consumption consistent with relevant laws and policies. The vessel owner or operator shall report these incidences to the IATTC Secretariat by recording them in the IATTC Regional Purse Seine Logbook, or another form identified by NMFS.

(g) Whale shark restrictions for purse seine vessels. Owners, operators, and crew of fishing vessels of the United States commercially fishing for tuna in the Convention Area may not set or attempt to set a purse seine on or around a whale shark (Rhincodon typus) if the animal is sighted prior to the commencement of the set or the attempted set.

(h) Whale shark release. The crew, operator, and owner of a fishing vessel of the United States commercially fishing for tuna in the Convention Area must release as soon as possible, any whale shark that is encircled in a purse seine net, and must ensure that all reasonable steps are taken to ensure its safe release. No whale shark may be towed out of a purse seine net (e.g., using towing ropes).

(i) Mobulid ray restrictions. The crew, operator, and owner of a U.S. commercial fishing vessel is prohibited from retaining on board, transshipping, storing, landing, selling, or offering for sale any part or whole carcass of a mobulid ray that is caught in the IATTC Convention Area, except as provided in the following sentence. In the case of any mobulid ray caught in the IATTC Convention Area on an observed purse seine vessel that is not seen during fishing operations and is delivered into the vessel hold, the mobulid ray may be stored on board and landed, but the vessel owner or operator must show the whole mobulid ray to the on-board observer at the point of landing for recording purposes, and then dispose of the mobulid ray at the direction of the responsible government authority. In U.S. ports the responsible governmental authority is the NOAA Office of Law Enforcement divisional office nearest to the port, or other authorized personnel. Mobulid rays that are caught and landed in this manner may not be sold or bartered, but may be donated for purposes of domestic human consumption consistent with relevant laws and policies.

(j) Mobulid ray handling and release. The crew, operator, and owner of a U.S. commercial fishing vessel must promptly release unharmed, to the extent practicable, any mobulid ray (whether live or dead) caught in the IATTC Convention Area as soon as it is seen in the net, on the hook, or on the deck, without compromising the safety of any persons. If a mobulid ray is live when caught, the crew, operator, and owner of a U.S. commercial fishing vessel must use the release procedures described in the following two paragraphs.

(1) No mobulid ray may be gaffed, no mobulid ray may be lifted by the gill slits or spiracles or by using bind wire against or inserted through the body, and no holes may be punched through the bodies of mobulid ray (e.g., to pass a cable through for lifting the mobulid ray).

(2) Applicable to purse seine operations, large mobulid rays must be brailed out of the net by directly releasing the mobulid ray from the brailer into the ocean. Large mobulid rays that cannot be released without compromising the safety of persons or the mobulid ray before being landed on deck, must be returned to the water as soon as possible, either utilizing a ramp from the deck connecting to an opening on the side of the boat, or lowered with a sling or net, using a crane if available. The minimum size for the sling or net must be at least 25 feet in diameter.

(k) Shark handling and release requirements for purse seine vessels. The crew, operator, and owner of a U.S. commercial purse seine fishing vessel must promptly release unharmed, to the extent practicable, any shark (whether live or dead) caught in the IATTC Convention Area, as soon as it is seen in the net or on the deck, without compromising the safety of any persons. If a shark is live when caught, the crew, operator, or owner must follow release procedures in the following two paragraphs.

(1) Sharks must be released out of the purse seine net by directly releasing the shark from the brailer into the ocean. Sharks that cannot be released without compromising the safety of persons or the sharks before being landed on deck must be returned to the water as soon as possible, either utilizing a ramp from the deck connecting to an opening on the side of the boat, or through escape hatches. If ramps or escape hatches are not available, the sharks must be lowered with a sling or cargo net, using a crane or similar equipment, if available.

(2) No shark may be gaffed or hooked, lifted by the head, tail, gill slits or spiracles, or lifted by using bind wire against or inserted through the body, and no holes may be punched through the bodies of sharks (e.g., to pass a cable through for lifting the shark).

(l) Shark line prohibition for longline vessels. Any U.S. longline vessel used to fish for tuna or swordfish is prohibited from using any shark line in the IATTC Convention Area.

[81 FR 50403, Aug. 1, 2016, as amended at 81 FR 86970, Dec. 2, 2016; 82 FR 56178, Nov. 28, 2017; 84 FR 70048, Dec. 20, 2019; 85 FR 29669, May 18, 2020]

§ 300.28 FAD restrictions.

(a) FAD identification requirements for purse seine vessels.

(1) For each FAD deployed or modified on or after January 1, 2017, in the IATTC Convention Area, the vessel owner or operator must either: obtain a unique code from HMS Branch; or use an existing unique identifier associated with the FAD (e.g., the manufacturer identification code for the attached buoy).

(2) U.S. purse seine vessel owners and operators shall ensure the characters of the unique code or unique identifier be marked indelibly at least five centimeters in height on the upper portion of the attached radio or satellite buoy in a location that does not cover the solar cells used to power the equipment. For FADs without attached radio or satellite buoys, the characters shall be on the uppermost or emergent top portion of the FAD. The vessel owner or operator shall ensure the marking is visible at all times during daylight. In circumstances where the on-board observer is unable to view the code, the captain or crew shall assist the observer (e.g., by providing the FAD identification code to the observer).

(b) Activating FADs for purse seine vessels. When deploying a FAD, a vessel owner, operator, or crew shall turn on the tracking equipment while the FAD is onboard the purse seine vessel and before it is deployed in the water.

(c) Restrictions on Active FADs for purse seine vessels. U.S. vessel owners and operators of purse-seine vessels with the following well volume (m3) must not have more than the following number of Active FADs per vessel in the IATTC Convention Area at any one time:

Well volume
(m3)
Active FAD limit
1,200 or more 450
426-1,199 300
213-425 120
0-212 70

(d) Restrictions on FAD deployments and removals.

(1) U.S. vessel owners, operators, and crew of purse seine vessels of class size 4-6 (more than 182 metric tons carrying capacity) must not deploy a FAD during a period of 15 days prior to the start of the selected closure period described in § 300.25(e)(1).

(2) During the 15 days prior to the start of the closure period selected by the vessel per § 300.25(e)(1), U.S. vessel owners, operators, and crew of purse seine vessels of class size 6 (greater than 363 metric tons carrying capacity) must remove from the water a number of FADs equal to the number of FADs set upon by the vessel during that same 15 day period.

(e) FAD design requirements to reduce entanglements. All FADs onboard or deployed by U.S. vessel owners, operators, or crew, must comply with the following design requirements:

(1) Raft: If the FAD design includes a raft (e.g., flat raft or rolls of material) and if mesh netting is used as part of the structure, the mesh netting shall have a mesh size less than 7 centimeters and the mesh net must be tightly wrapped such that no netting hangs below the FAD when deployed; and,

(2) Subsurface: Any netting used in the subsurface structure of the FAD must be tightly tied into bundles (“sausages”), or have stretched mesh size less than 7 centimeters in a panel that is weighted on the lower end with at least enough weight to keep the netting taut in the water column.

[83 FR 15510, Apr. 11, 2018, as amended at 83 FR 62734, Dec. 6, 2018]

§ 300.29 Observers.

The following requirements apply to all on-board fisheries observers required under this subpart, which includes observers on purse seine, longline vessels, and transshipment carrier vessels, and while on a fishing trip in the IATTC Convention Area.

(a) Contact information. A full list of U.S. longline and IATTC purse seine observer providers and U.S. Government contacts for situations described in paragraphs (b) through (d) of this section is available at the following website: https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/west-coast/partners/emergency-contacts-vessel-owners-operators-and-observers-longline-and-purse.

(b) Loss of life. In the event that an observer dies, is missing, or presumed fallen overboard, the owner or operator of the fishing vessel must immediately notify a U.S. Government contact and the observer provider.

(c) Serious illness or injury. The owner or operator of a fishing vessel of the United States shall immediately report serious illness or injury that threatens the life and/or long-term health or safety of an observer to the observer provider and a U.S. Government contact. In addition, the owner or operator of the fishing vessel must:

(1) Immediately cease fishing operations;

(2) Take all reasonable actions to care for the observer and provide any medical treatment available and possible on board the vessel, and where appropriate seek external medical advice;

(3) Where directed by the observer provider, if not already directed by the appropriate U.S. Government contact, facilitate the disembarkation and transport of the observer to a medical facility equipped to provide the required care, as soon as practicable; and

(4) Cooperate fully in any official investigations into the cause of the illness or injury.

(d) Assault, intimidation, threat, or harassment. For reporting violations in the event that an observer on a fishing vessel of the United States has been assaulted, intimidated, threatened, or harassed, the owner or operator of the fishing vessel shall immediately notify the observer provider and the NOAA Office of Law Enforcement West Coast Division Duty Officer line at (206) 526-4851 of the situation and the status and location of the observer. In addition, the owner or operator of the fishing vessel must:

(1) Immediately take action to preserve the safety of the observer and mitigate and resolve the situation on board;

(2) If the observer or the observer provider indicate that they wish for the observer to be removed from the vessel, facilitate the safe disembarkation of the observer in a manner and place, as agreed by the observer provider and a U.S. Government contact, that facilitates access to any needed medical treatment; and

(3) Cooperate fully in any official investigations into the incident.

[85 FR 29669, May 18, 2020]

Subpart D - South Pacific Tuna Fisheries
Authority:

16 U.S.C. 973-973r.

§ 300.30 Purpose and scope.

This subpart implements the South Pacific Tuna Act of 1988 (Act) and the Treaty on Fisheries Between the Governments of Certain Pacific Island States and the Government of the United States of America (Treaty) and applies to persons and vessels subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.

§ 300.31 Definitions.

In addition to the terms defined in § 300.2, in the Act, and in the Treaty, and unless the context requires otherwise, the terms used in this subpart have the following meanings. If a term is defined differently in § 300.2, the Act, or the Treaty, the definition in this section shall apply.

Administrator means the individual or organization designated by the Pacific Island Parties to act on their behalf under the Treaty and notified to the United States.

Applicable national law means any of the laws of Pacific Island Parties in the following table and any regulations or other instruments having the force of law implemented pursuant to these laws:

Pacific Island Party Laws
AUSTRALIA Antarctic Marine Living Resources Conservation Act, 1981.
Fisheries Management Act, 1991.
Fisheries Administration Act, 1991.
Statutory Fishing Rights Charge Act, 1991.
Fisheries Legislation (Consequential Provisions) Act, 1991.
Foreign Fishing Licences Levy Act, 1991.
Fishing Levy Act, 1991.
Fisheries Agreements (Payments) Act, 1991.
Torres Strait Fisheries Act, 1984.
Whale Protection Act, 1980.
COOK ISLANDS Exclusive Economic Zone (Foreign Fishing Craft) Regulations, 1979.
Territorial Sea and Exclusive Economic Zone Act, 1977.
Marine Resources Act, 1989.
FEDERATED STATES OF MICRONESIA Titles 18 and 24 of the Code of the Federated States of Micronesia, as amended by Public Law Nos. 2-28, 2-31, 3-9, 3-10, 3-34, and 3-80.
FIJI Fisheries Act (Cap. 158).
Fisheries Regulations (Cap. 158).
Marine Spaces Act (Cap. 158A).
Marine Spaces (Foreign Fishing Vessels) Regulations, 1979.
KIRIBATI Fisheries Ordinance, 1979.
Fisheries (Amendment) Act, 1984.
Marine Zones (Declaration) Act, 1983.
Fisheries (Pacific Island States' Treaty with the United States) Act 1988.
MARSHALL ISLANDS Title 33, Marine Resources Act, as amended by P.L. 1989-56, P.L. 1991-43, and P.L. 1992-25 of the Marshall Islands Revised Code.
NAURU Interpretation Act, 1971.
Interpretation Act (Amendment) Act No. 1 1975.
Interpretation Act (Amendment) Act No. 2 1975.
Marine Resources Act, 1978.
NEW ZEALAND Antarctic Marine Living Resources Act, 1981.
Continental Shelf Act, 1964.
Conservation Act, 1987.
Driftnet Prohibition Act, 1991.
Exclusive Economic Zone (Foreign Fishing Craft) Regulations, 1978.
Fishing Industry Board Act, 1963.
Fisheries Act, 1983.
Marine Mammals Protection Act, 1978.
Marine Reserves Act, 1971.
Marine Pollution Act, 1974.
Meat Act, 1964.
Territorial Sea and Exclusive Economic Zone Act, 1977.
Tokelau (Territorial Sea and Exclusive Economic Zone) Act, 1977.
Submarine Cables and Pipelines Protection Act, 1966.
Sugar Loaf Islands Marine Protected Area Act, 1991.
Wildlife Act, 1953.
NIUE Niue Fish Protection Ordinance 1965.
Sunday Fishing Prohibition Act 1980.
Territorial Sea and Exclusive Economic Zone Act 1978.
PALAU Palau National Code, Title 27.
PAPUA NEW GUINEA Fisheries Act (Cap 214).
Fisheries Regulations (Cap 214).
Fisheries (Torres Strait Protected Zone) Act, 1984.
National Seas Act (Cap 361).
Tuna Resources Management Act (Cap 224).
Whaling Act (Cap 225).
SOLOMON ISLANDS Delimitation of Marine Waters Act, 1978.
Fisheries Act, 1972.
Fisheries Limits Act, 1977.
Fisheries Regulations, 1972.
Fisheries (Foreign Fishing Vessels) Regulations, 1981.
Fisheries (United States of America) (Treaty) Act 1988.
TONGA Fisheries Act, 1989.
TUVALU Fisheries Act (Cap 45).
Fisheries (Foreign Fishing Vessel) Regulations, 1982.
Marine Zones (Declaration) Act, 1983.
Foreign Fishing Vessels Licensing (US Treaty) Order 1987.
VANUATU Fisheries Act 1982 (Cap 158).
Fisheries Regulations, 1983.
Maritime Zones Act 1981 (Cap 138).
SAMOA Exclusive Economic Zone Act, 1977.
Territorial Sea Act, 1971.
Fisheries Act, 1988.

Authorized inspector means any individual authorized by a Pacific Island Party or the Secretary to conduct inspections, to remove samples of fish and to gather any other information relating to fisheries in the Licensing Area.

Authorized officer means any officer who is authorized by the Secretary, or the Secretary of Transportation, or the head of any Federal or state agency that has entered into an enforcement agreement with the Secretary under section 10(a) of the Act.

Authorized party officer means any officer authorized by a Pacific Island Party to enforce the provisions of the Treaty.

Closed area means any of the areas in the following table, as depicted on charts provided by the Regional Administrator and as further described in additional information that may be provided by the Regional Administrator:

Pacific Island Party Area
AUSTRALIA All waters within the seaward boundary of the Australian Fishing Zone (AFZ) west of a line connecting the point of intersection of the outer limit of the AFZ by the parallel of latitude 25° 30′ South with the point of intersection of the meridian of longitude 151° East by the outer limit of the AFZ and all waters south of the parallel of latitude 25° 30′ South.
COOK ISLANDS Territorial Sea.
FEDERATED STATES OF MICRONESIA Three nautical mile territorial sea and nine nautical mile exclusive fishery zone and on all named banks and reefs as depicted on the following charts:
DMAHTC NO 81019 (2nd. ed., Mar. 1945; revised 7/17/72; corrected through NM 3/78 of 21 June 1978).
DMAHTC NO 81023 (3rd. ed., 7 Aug. 1976).
DMAHTC NO 81002 (4th. ed., 26 Jan. 1980; corrected through NM 4/80).
FIJI Internal waters, archipelagic waters and territorial seas of Fiji and Rotuma and its Dependencies.
KIRIBATI Within archipelagic waters as established in accordance with Marine Zones (Declaration) Act 1983; within 12 nautical miles drawn from the baselines from which the territorial seas is measured; and within 2 nautical miles of any anchored fish aggregating device within the Kiribati exclusive economic zone for which notification of its location shall be given by geographical coordinates.
MARSHALL ISLANDS 12 nautical mile territorial sea and area within two nautical miles of any anchored fish aggregating device within the Marshall Islands exclusive economic zone for which notification of its location shall be given by geographical coordinates.
NAURU The territorial waters as defined by Nauru Interpretation Act, 1971, Section 2.
NEW ZEALAND Territorial waters; waters within 6 nautical miles of outer boundary of territorial waters; all waters to west of New Zealand main islands and south of 39° South latitude; all waters to east of New Zealand main islands south of 40° South latitude; and in respect of Tokelau: areas within 12 nautical miles of all island and reef baselines; twelve and one half nautical miles either side of a line joining Atafu and Nukunonu and Faka'ofo; and coordinates as follows:
Atafu: 8°35′10″ S, 172°29′30″ W
Nukunonu: 9°06′25″ S, 171°52′10″ W 9°11′30″ S, 171°47′00″ W
Faka'ofo: 9°22′30″ S, 171°16′30″ W
NIUE Territorial sea and within 3 nautical miles of Beveridge Reef, Antiope Reef and Haran Reef as depicted by appropriate symbols on NZ 225F (chart showing the territorial sea and exclusive economic zone of Niue pursuant to the Niue Territorial Sea and Exclusive Economic Zone Act of 1978).
PALAU Within 12 nautical miles of all island baselines in the Palau Islands; and the area:
commencing at the north-easternmost intersection of the outer limit of the 12 nautical mile territorial sea of Palau by the arc of a circle having a radius of 50 nautical miles and its center at Latitude 07°16′34″ North, longitude 134°28′25″ East, being at about the center of the reef entrance to Malakal Pass; running thence generally south-easterly, southerly, south-westerly, westerly, north-westerly, northerly and north-easterly along that arc to its intersection by the outer limit of the 12 nautical mile territorial sea; and thence generally northerly, north-easterly, easterly, south-easterly and southerly along that outer limit to the point of commencement.
Where for the purpose of these specifications it is necessary to determine the position on the surface of the Earth of a point, line or area, it shall be determined by reference to the World Geodetic System 1984; that is to say, by reference to a spheroid having its center at the center of the Earth and a major (equatorial) radius of 6,378,137 meters and a flattening of 1/298.2572.
PAPUA NEW GUINEA All territorial seas, archipelagic and internal waters.
SOLOMON ISLANDS All internal waters, territorial seas and archipelagic waters; and such additional waters around the main group archipelago, as defined under the Delimitation of Marine Waters Act 1978, not exceeding sixty nautical miles.
TONGA All waters with depths of not more than 1,000 meters, within the area bounded by the fifteenth and twenty third and one half degrees of south latitudes and the one hundred and seventy third and the one hundred and seventy seventh degrees of west longitudes; also within a radius of twelve nautical miles from the islands of Teleki Tonga and Teleki Tokelau.
TUVALU Territorial sea and waters within two nautical miles of all named banks, that is Macaw, Kosciusko, Rose, Bayonnaise and Hera, in Tuvalu exclusive economic zone, as depicted on the chart entitled “Tuvalu Fishery Limits” prepared by the United Kingdom Hydrographic Department, Taunton, January 11, 1981.
VANUATU Archipelagic waters and the territorial sea, and internal waters.
SAMOA Territorial sea; reefs, banks and sea-mounts and within 2 nautical miles of any anchored fish aggregating device within the Samoa exclusive economic zone for which notification of its location shall be given by geographical coordinates.

FFA Vessel Register means the registry of fishing vessels maintained by the FFA, comprising those vessels which are in good standing and licensed to fish in the waters of FFA member countries, including those vessels licensed under § 300.32.

Fishing means searching for, catching, taking, or harvesting fish; attempting to search for, catch, take, or harvest fish; engaging in any other activity that can reasonably be expected to result in the locating, catching, taking, or harvesting of fish; placing, searching for, or recovering fish aggregating devices or associated electronic equipment such as radio beacons; any operations at sea directly in support of, or in preparation for, any activity described in this paragraph; or aircraft use, relating to the activities described in this definition, except for flights in emergencies involving the health or safety of crew members or the safety of a vessel.

Fishing arrangement means an arrangement between a Pacific Island Party and the owner of a U.S. fishing vessel that complies with section 6(b) of the Act.

Fishing vessel or vessel means any boat, ship, or other craft that is used for, equipped to be used for, or of a type normally used for commercial fishing, and that is documented under the laws of the United States.

Licensing Area means all waters in the Treaty Area except for:

(1) Those waters subject to the jurisdiction of the United States in accordance with international law.

(2) Those waters within closed areas.

(3) Those waters within limited areas closed to fishing.

Licensing period means the period of validity of licenses issued in accordance with the Treaty.

Operator means any person who is in charge of, directs or controls a vessel, including the owner, charterer and master.

Pacific Island Party means a Pacific island nation that is a party to the Treaty.

Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency or FFA means the organization established by the 1979 South Pacific Forum Fisheries Agency Convention.

Regional Administrator means the Regional Administrator, Pacific Islands Region, NMFS, 1845 Wasp Blvd., Bldg. 176, Honolulu, HI 96818, facsimile: 808-725-5215, or a designee.

Transship means to unload any or all of the fish on board a licensed vessel either ashore or onto another vessel.

Treaty Area means all waters north of 60° S. lat. and east of 90° E. long., subject to the fisheries jurisdiction of Pacific Island Parties, and all other waters within rhumb lines connecting the following points, except for waters subject to the jurisdiction in accordance with international law of a State which is not a party to the Treaty:

Point Latitude Longitude
A 2°35′39″ S 141°00′00″ E
B 1°01′35″ N 140°48′35″ E
C 1°01′35″ N 129°30′00″ E
D 10°00′00″ N 129°30′00″ E
E 14°00′00″ N 140°00′00″ E
F 14°00′00″ N 142°00′00″ E
G 12°30′00″ N 142°00′00″ E
H 12°30′00″ N 158°00′00″ E
I 15°00′00″ N 158°00′00″ E
J 15°00′00″ N 165°00′00″ E
K 18°00′00″ N 165°00′00″ E
L 18°00′00″ N 174°00′00″ E
M 12°00′00″ N 174°00′00″ E
N 12°00′00″ N 176°00′00″ E
O 5°00′00″ N 176°00′00″ E
P 1°00′00″ N 180°00′00″
Q 1°00′00″ N 164°00′00″ W
R 8°00′00″ N 164°00′00″ W
S 8°00′00″ N 158°00′00″ W
T 0°00′00″ 150°00′00″ W
U 6°00′00″ S 150°00′00″ W
V 6°00′00″ S 146°00′00″ W
W 12°00′00″ S 146°00′00″ W
X 26°00′00″ S 157°00′00″ W
Y 26°00′00″ S 174°00′00″ W
Z 40°00′00″ S 174°00′00″ W
AA 40°00′00″ S 171°00′00″ W
AB 46°00′00″ S 171°00′00″ W
AC 55°00′00″ S 180°00′00″
AD 59°00′00″ S 160°00′00″ E
AE 59°00′00″ S 152°00′00″ E and north along the 152 degrees of East longitude until intersecting the Australian 200-nautical-mile limit.

UTC means Universal Coordinated Time.

Vessel Monitoring System Unit or VMS unit, sometimes known as a “mobile transmitting unit,” means Administrator-approved and NMFS-approved VMS unit hardware and software that is installed on a vessel pursuant to § 300.45. The VMS units are a component of the regional vessel monitoring system administered by the FFA, as well as of the vessel monitoring system administered by NMFS, and as such are used to transmit information between the vessel and the Administrator and NMFS and/or other reporting points designated by NMFS.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 72 FR 6149, Feb. 9, 2007; 75 FR 74643, Dec. 1, 2010; 79 FR 64110, Oct. 28, 2014]

§ 300.32 Vessel licenses.

(a) Each vessel fishing in the Licensing Area must have a license issued by the Administrator for the licensing period being fished, unless exempted by § 300.39. Each licensing period begins on June 15 and ends on June 14 of the following year.

(b) Upon receipt, the license or a copy or facsimile thereof must be carried on board the vessel when in the Licensing Area or Closed Areas, and must be produced at the request of authorized officers, authorized party officers, or authorized inspectors. A vessel may be used to fish in the Licensing Area if the license has been issued but not yet received, provided that the license number is available on board.

(c) The total number of licenses that may be issued and valid at any point in time is 45, five of which shall be reserved for fishing vessels of the United States engaged in joint venture arrangements.

(1) For the purpose of this section, the licenses reserved for vessels engaged in joint venture arrangements are referred to as “joint venture licenses,” and the remaining licenses are referred to as “general licenses.”

(2) A joint venture arrangement is one in which the subject vessel and its operators are engaged in fishing-related activities designed to maximize the benefits generated for the Pacific Island Parties from the operations of fishing vessels licensed pursuant to the Treaty, as determined by the Administrator. Such activities can include the use of canning, transshipment, vessel slipping and repair facilities located in the Pacific Island Parties; the purchase of equipment and supplies, including fuel supplies, from suppliers located in the Pacific Island Parties; and the employment of nationals of the Pacific Island Parties on board such vessels.

(d) Licenses are issued by the Administrator. The Administrator will issue licenses only for applications that have been approved by the Regional Administrator. The Regional Administrator's approval is indicated by the signature of the Regional Administrator on the part of the application form labeled “Schedule 1.” Upon approval by the Regional Administrator of a license application, the complete application will be forwarded to the Administrator for consideration. Except as provided in paragraph (n) of this section, prior to approving license applications for a given licensing period, the Regional Administrator will issue pre-approvals of license applications that serve the purpose of temporarily reserving approvals up until the time complete applications are due to be received by the Regional Administrator.

(e) The Regional Administrator, in his or her sole discretion, may approve fewer license applications than there are licenses available for any given licensing period or at any given time.

(f) A pre-approval or approval issued by the Regional Administrator pursuant to this section:

(1) Shall not confer any right of compensation to the recipient of such pre-approval or approval;

(2) Shall not create, or be construed to create, any right, title, or interest in or to a license or any fish; and

(3) Shall be considered a grant of permission to the recipient of the pre-approval or approval to proceed with the process of seeking a license from the Administrator.

(g) A pre-approval or approval issued by the Regional Administrator pursuant to this section is subject to being rescinded at any time if the Regional Administrator determines that an administrative error has been made in its granting, false information has been provided by the applicant, circumstances have changed such that the information provided by the applicant is no longer accurate, true or valid, or if the applicant or vessel no longer meets the requirements for licensing under this subpart or under the Act or other applicable law. NMFS will notify the applicant of its rescission of a pre-approval or approval within 14 days of the rescission. In the event that the Regional Administrator rescinds an approval after the license has been issued, NMFS will notify the Administrator of such, and request that the Administrator immediately revoke the license.

(h) Application process for general licenses.

(1) A vessel operator who satisfies the requirements for licensing under the Act and under this subpart may apply for a general license.

(2) In order for a general license to be issued for a vessel, an applicant must submit a complete application to, and obtain an application approval from, the Regional Administrator.

(3) Except for the 2011-2012 licensing period, prior to submitting a complete application, an applicant may request pre-approval of an application by the Regional Administrator by submitting an expression of interest. A pre-approval of an application establishes that the applicant is eligible to be considered for one of the available licenses following timely submission of a complete application. Although submission of an expression of interest is entirely voluntary, applications that have not been pre-approved might not be eligible for approval if the number of applications exceeds the number of available licenses for a given licensing period. A pre-approval will be deemed to be void if the applicant fails to submit a complete application by the date established in paragraph (h)(6) of this section.

(4) Except as provided in paragraph (n) of this section, in order to obtain a pre-approval for a given licensing period, either an expression of interest or a complete application must be submitted to and received by the Regional Administrator no later than June 1st of the year preceding the year in which the licensing period begins.

(5) An expression of interest must include the information listed below, which may be submitted by electronic or hard-copy correspondence following instructions provided by the Regional Administrator.

(i) If the expression of interest is for a vessel for which, as of the June 1st due date for submitting such expression of interest, NMFS has issued an application approval for the licensing period that starts that year (i.e., a renewal of the license is being sought), the expression of interest shall include:

(A) The licensing period for which the license is being sought.

(B) The current name, IRCS, and annual USCG Certificate of Documentation number of the vessel.

(ii) For all other expressions of interest that do not meet the criteria in paragraph (h)(5)(i) of this section, the expression of interest shall include:

(A) The licensing period for which the license is being sought.

(B) The full name and address of each person who is, or who is anticipated to be, an operator of the vessel for which a license is sought, and for each such person, a statement of whether the person is, or is anticipated to be, owner, charterer, and/or master of the vessel.

(C) A statement of whether or not the vessel to be licensed is known, and if it is known, the current name, IRCS, and annual USCG Certificate of Documentation number, if any, of the vessel.

(D) A copy of the vessel's current USCG Certificate of Documentation. If the vessel has not been issued such a document, then a statement of whether application has been or will be made for a USCG Certificate of Documentation, including identification of all endorsements sought in such application.

(E) If the vessel is known, a list of the licensing periods, if any, during which a license for the vessel was issued under this section.

(F) If the vessel is known, a statement of the total amount, in metric tons, of any tuna species landed or transshipped from the vessel at United States ports, including ports located in any of the States, for each of the calendar years 1988 through the current year.

(6) A complete application for a given licensing period may be submitted to the Regional Administrator at any time up to May 15th within the licensing period, but in order to be considered for approval in the event that more applications are received by the Regional Administrator than there are licenses available, a complete application must be received by the Regional Administrator as follows:

(i) No later than February 5th of the year in which the licensing period begins; or

(ii) If a pre-approval of the application was issued in accordance with paragraphs (k)(8) or (k)(9) of this section, not later than the date specified by NMFS in the notification of such pre-approval (which will be calculated by NMFS to be no later than 194 days from the date of mailing of the notification of the pre-approval).

(7) License application forms, which include the “Schedule 1” form and the FFA Vessel Register application form, are available from the Regional Administrator. The complete application must be received by the Regional Administrator as specified in paragraph (h)(6) of this section. An application shall not be complete, and shall not be subject to processing, unless it contains all of the information specified on the “Schedule 1” form and all the items listed in paragraphs (h)(7)(i) through (h)(7)(x) of this section, as follows:

(i) The licensing period for which the license is requested.

(ii) The name of an agent, located in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, who, on behalf of the license holder, will receive and respond to any legal process issued in accordance with the Treaty.

(iii) Documentation from an insurance company showing that the vessel will be fully insured for the licensing period against all risks and liabilities normally covered by maritime liability insurance.

(iv) If the owner or charterer is the subject of proceedings under the bankruptcy laws of the United States, a statement that the owner or charterer will be financially able to fulfill any and all responsibilities under the Treaty, Act, and regulations, including the payment of any penalties or fines.

(v) A copy of the vessel's current annual USCG Certificate of Documentation.

(vi) Electronic versions of full color photographs of the vessel in its current form and appearance, including a bow-to-stern side-view photograph of the vessel that clearly and legibly shows the vessel markings, and a photograph of every area of the vessel that is marked with the IRCS assigned to the vessel.

(vii) A schematic stowage/well plan for the vessel.

(viii) A copy of the VMS unit installation certificate, issued by the Administrator-authorized person who installed the VMS unit, for the VMS unit installed on the vessel in accordance with § 300.45.

(ix) An FFA Vessel Register application form that includes all the applicable information specified in the form.

(x) In the case of an application for a vessel that does not meet the criteria in paragraph (h)(5)(i) of this section, any information under paragraph (h)(5)(ii) of this section that has not already been provided or that has changed since it was previously submitted.

(i) Application process for joint venture licenses.

(1) A vessel operator who satisfies the requirements for licensing under the Act and under this subpart may apply for a joint venture license.

(2) The applicant, in coordination with one or more Pacific Island Parties, shall contact the Administrator to determine the specific information and documents that are required by the Administrator in order to obtain an initial approval from the Administrator for a joint venture license. The applicant shall submit such required information and documents directly to the Administrator. Once an initial approval is obtained from the Administrator, the applicant shall submit a complete application package, as described in paragraph (h)(7) of this section, to the Regional Administrator, along with dated documentation of the Administrator's initial approval, and a letter or other documentation from the relevant national authority or authorities of the Pacific Island Party or Parties identifying the joint venture partner or partners and indicating the Party's or Parties' approval of the joint venture arrangement and its or their concurrence that a joint venture license may be issued for the vessel.

(j) Appeals -

(1) Eligibility. Any applicant who is denied a pre-approval or an approval under this section may appeal the denial. The appeal must be made in writing and must clearly state the basis for the appeal and the nature of the relief that is requested. The appeal must be received by the Regional Administrator not later than 14 days after the date that the notice of denial is postmarked.

(2) Appeal review. Upon receipt of an appeal, the Regional Administrator will appoint a designee who will review the basis of the appeal and issue an initial written decision. The written decision will be mailed to the applicant within 30 days of receipt of the appeal. If the appellant does not request a review within 10 days of mailing of the initial decision, the initial decision is the final administrative action of the Department of Commerce. If, within 10 days of mailing of the initial decision, the Regional Administrator receives from the appellant a written request for review of the initial decision, the Assistant Administrator or a designee will review the basis of the appeal and issue a final written decision. The final decision will be made within 30 days of receipt of the request for review of the initial decision. The decision of the Assistant Administrator or designee constitutes the final administrative action of the Department of Commerce.

(k) Procedures used by the Secretary to review and process applications for general licenses. The procedures in this paragraph apply to the process used by NMFS, on behalf of the Secretary and in consultation with the Secretary of State, to review expressions of interest and complete applications, and to approve applications. For the purpose of this section, NMFS' approval of an application means the signing by the Regional Administrator of the “Schedule 1” part of the application form, indicating that the application is complete and that it meets the requirements of the Act and of this subpart for forwarding to the Administrator. For the purpose of this section, NMFS' pre-approval of an application means that the Regional Administrator has initially determined that the applicant is eligible for a general license, but that the application has not yet been approved for forwarding to the Administrator.

(1) NMFS will pre-approve no more applications for a given licensing period than there are licenses available for that licensing period. A pre-approval will be deemed to be void if the applicant fails to submit a complete application by the date established in paragraph (h)(6) of this section.

(2) NMFS will approve no more applications for a given licensing period than there are licenses available for that licensing period.

(3) NMFS will not approve a license application if it determines that:

(i) The application is not in accord with the Treaty, Act, or regulations;

(ii) The owner or charterer is the subject of proceedings under the bankruptcy laws of the United States, and reasonable financial assurances have not been provided to the Secretary that the owner or charterer will be financially able to fulfill any and all responsibilities under the Treaty, Act, and regulations, including the payment of any penalties or fines;

(iii) The owner or charterer has not established to the satisfaction of the Secretary that the vessel will be fully insured for the licensing period against all risks and liabilities normally covered by maritime liability insurance; or

(iv) The owner or charterer has not paid any final penalty assessed by the Secretary in accordance with the Act.

(4) Except as provided in paragraph (n) of this section, no later than July 16th of each year, NMFS will pre-approve applications from among the expressions of interest and complete applications that were received by June 1st of the current year for the licensing period that starts the following year as provided in this paragraph. If the number of expressions of interest and complete applications does not exceed the number of licenses available, all applications that meet the requirements of paragraphs (h)(4) and (h)(5) of this section and that satisfy the relevant requirements for licensing under the Act and this subpart will be pre-approved. If the number of expressions of interest and complete applications exceeds the number of licenses available, those that meet the requirements of paragraphs (h)(4) and (h)(5) of this section and that satisfy the relevant requirements for licensing under the Act and this subpart will be prioritized for pre-approval as follows:

(i) First priority will be given to expressions of interest and complete applications for vessels for which, as of June 1st of that year, application approvals have been issued by NMFS for the licensing period that starts that year (i.e., anticipated license renewal applications), provided that such vessels continue to satisfy the requirements for licensing under the Act and this subpart, and provided such vessels have no unsatisfied civil penalties or fines assessed by the Secretary under the Act that have become final.

(ii) Second priority will be given to expressions of interest and complete applications scored using the following system, in descending order of the sum of the points assigned:

(A) 15 points will be assigned for a vessel that has been issued, or will be issued by the date complete applications are due to be received by the Regional Administrator under paragraph (h)(6) of this section, a valid USCG Certificate of Documentation with a fishery endorsement.

(B) 1 point will be assigned for each licensing period, starting with the 1988-1989 licensing period, in which a license had been issued for the vessel pursuant to the Act, for a total of no more than 10 points.

(C) 1 point will be assigned for each calendar year in which at least 3,000 metric tons of fish were landed or transshipped from the vessel in United States ports, including ports located in any of the States, as determined by the Regional Administrator. The applicable period shall run from 1988 through the last calendar year prior to the year in which the applied-for licensing period starts, and the total number of points assigned shall be no more than 5.

(D) In the event that two or more vessels receive the same sum number of points under paragraphs (k)(4)(ii)(A) through (k)(4)(ii)(C) of this section, priority will be given to the vessel from which the greatest amount of fish, by weight, was landed or transshipped in United States ports, including ports located in any of the States, starting in calendar year 1988 and ending in the year prior to the year in which the applied-for licensing period starts, as determined by the Regional Administrator. In the event that that does not resolve the tie, priority will be given by lottery, which will be conducted by the Regional Administrator.

(5) Except as provided in paragraph (n) of this section, no later than July 26th of each year, NMFS will send notifications by mail to all applicants that submitted expressions of interest or complete applications by June 1st of that year, indicating whether their applications (for the licensing period that starts the following year) have been pre-approved.

(6) No later than March 7th of each year, NMFS will approve applications (for the licensing period that starts that year) that satisfy all of the following conditions:

(i) The application was pre-approved;

(ii) The information associated with the application has not changed since the point of pre-approval in a way such that pre-approval would not have been made using the updated information;

(iii) The complete application was received by February 5th of the same year; and

(iv) The applicant satisfies the requirements for licensing under the Act and this subpart.

(7) No later than March 17th of each year, NMFS will notify all applicants (for the licensing period that starts that year) who submitted complete applications by February 5th of that year, whether their applications have been approved under paragraph (k)(6) of this section, and in cases where they have not, whether their applications are being considered for approval under paragraph (k)(8) of this section.

(8) In the event that additional licenses for a given licensing period are available after issuing the approvals under paragraph (k)(6) of this section, NMFS will, after final administrative action by the Department of Commerce on any appeals made under paragraph (j) of this section, do the following:

(i) If the number of outstanding expressions of interest (i.e., expressions of interest that have not been pre-approved) received by June 1st of the year preceding the year in which the licensing period begins, plus the number of outstanding complete applications (i.e., complete applications that have not been approved) received by February 5th of the year in which the licensing period begins, exceeds the number of licenses available, NMFS will review all such outstanding expressions of interest and complete applications and apply the process described in paragraphs (k)(9)(i)(A) through (k)(9)(i)(C) of this section to pre-approve and approve applications from among that pool of applicants;

(ii) If the number of outstanding expressions of interest received by June 1st of the year preceding the year in which the licensing period begins, plus the number of outstanding complete applications received by February 5th of the year in which the licensing period begins, does not exceed the number of licenses available:

(A) No later than June 15th of the year in which the licensing period begins, NMFS will pre-approve all such outstanding expressions of interest and complete applications that satisfy the relevant requirements for licensing under the Act and this subpart;

(B) No later than June 25th of the year in which the licensing period begins, NMFS will notify all such outstanding applicants of the pre-approvals, and for those applicants that submitted expressions of interest but not complete applications, also notify them of the date by which a complete application must be received in order to be issued an application approval (which will be calculated by NMFS to be no later than 194 days from the date of mailing of the notification of the pre-approval);

(C) NMFS will review all complete applications received by the required date from applicants pre-approved under paragraph (8)(ii)(A) of this section, and within 30 days of such receipt, approve the application, if and as appropriate and if the applicant satisfies the requirements for licensing under the Act and this subpart; and

(D) If and as long as the number of approvals plus outstanding (not voided) pre-approvals does not exceed the total number of licenses available under paragraph (c) of this section, NMFS will review all complete applications received after February 5th of the year in which the licensing period begins and before May 16th within the licensing period and, as they are received and in the order they are received (based on the day of receipt), will approve those applications that satisfy the requirements for licensing under the Act and this subpart until no more approvals are available. In the event that two or more complete applications are received on the same day, priority for approval will be given by lottery, which will be conducted by the Regional Administrator.

(iii) Within 10 days of approving an application, NMFS will notify the applicant.

(9) If a license or application approval that has been issued for a given licensing period becomes available before or during that licensing period, NMFS will do the following:

(i) If there are any outstanding expressions of interest received by June 1st of the year preceding the year in which the licensing period begins or outstanding complete applications received by February 5th of the year in which the licensing period begins, NMFS will review all such outstanding expressions of interest and complete applications and pre-approve and approve applications for that license from among that pool as follows:

(A) Within 45 days of NMFS becoming aware of the availability of the license, NMFS will pre-approve an application using the prioritization criteria and point-assigning system described in paragraphs (k)(4)(i) and (k)(4)(ii) of this section;

(B) Within 55 days of NMFS becoming aware of the availability of the license NMFS will notify all active applicants as to whether their applications have been pre-approved, and for those applications that have been pre-approved, notify each applicant of the date by which a complete application, if not already received, must be received (which will be calculated by NMFS to be no later than 194 days from the date of mailing of the notification of the pre-approval); and

(C) Within 30 days of receiving a complete application that had been pre-approved, NMFS will approve the application, if and as appropriate and if the applicant satisfies the requirements of this subpart.

(ii) If there are no outstanding expressions of interest received by June 1st of the year preceding the year in which the licensing period begins and no outstanding complete applications received by February 5th of the year in which the licensing period begins, if and as long as the number of approvals plus outstanding (not voided) pre-approvals does not exceed the number of licenses available, NMFS will review all complete applications received after February 5th of the year in which the licensing period begins and before May 16th within the licensing period and, in the order they are received (based on the day of receipt), will approve those applications that satisfy the requirements for licensing under the Act and this subpart until no more approvals are available. In the event that two or more complete applications are received on the same day, priority for approval will be given by lottery, which will be conducted by the Regional Administrator.

(iii) Within 10 days of approving an application, NMFS will notify the applicant.

(l) Procedures used by the Secretary to review and process applications for joint venture licenses. NMFS, on behalf of the Secretary and in consultation with the Secretary of State, will review and approve applications for joint venture licenses as described in paragraph (k) of this section for general licenses, except that NMFS will not consider expressions of interest for joint venture licenses or pre-approve applications for joint venture licenses. In the event that NMFS receives for a given licensing period more applications for joint venture licenses than there are licenses available, it will approve the applications in the chronological order that the Administrator has provided its initial approval.

(m) Transferability of application approvals. Application approvals from NMFS are not transferable among vessel owners or operators or license applicants. Application approvals are transferable among vessels, subject to the following requirements:

(1) A vessel operator may seek to transfer a general or joint venture license to another vessel that meets the requirements for licensing under this subpart and the Act, only if the license has been valid for the vessel for at least 365 consecutive days and all the fees required by the Administrator for the current licensing period have been paid to the Administrator. The vessel operator may seek to transfer the license by submitting a written request to the Regional Administrator along with a complete application for the other vessel as described in paragraph (h)(7) of this section. Any such transfer may be subject to additional fees for the registration of the vessel on the FFA Vessel Register, as specified in paragraph (b) of § 300.45.

(2) Upon receipt of a request and complete application under paragraph (m)(1) of this section, the Regional Administrator, after determining that all the fees required for the vessel by the Administrator for the current licensing period have been paid, that the ownership of the licensed vessel and the ownership of the vessel to which the application approval would be transferred are identical, and that the transferee vessel meets the requirements for licensing under this subpart and the Act, will approve the application and notify the applicant of such within 10 days of the determination.

(3) If a licensed vessel is lost or destroyed, and the operators of the vessel apply for a license for another vessel for the licensing period during which the vessel was lost, or for either of the two subsequent licensing periods, NMFS will consider the replacement vessel to have the license application approval status and history of the lost or destroyed vessel for the purpose of applying the prioritization criteria of paragraph (k)(4) of this section, provided that the ownership of the lost or destroyed vessel and the ownership of the replacement vessel, as determined by the Regional Administrator, are identical, and the replacement vessel meets the requirements for licensing under this subpart and the Act.

(n) Procedures for 2011-2012 licensing period. For the licensing period that starts June 15, 2011, and for that licensing period only, pre-approvals may not be sought and will not be issued by NMFS. NMFS will rank order those applications received by February 5, 2011, for the 2011-2012 licensing period by applying the criteria in paragraphs (k)(4)(i) and (k)(4)(ii) of this section, except that in lieu of using the criteria in (k)(4)(i), first priority will be given to applications for vessels that as of February 5, 2011, have valid licenses for the 2010-2011 licensing period.

[75 FR 74644, Dec. 1, 2010]

§ 300.33 Compliance with applicable national laws.

The operator of the vessel shall comply with each of the applicable national laws, and the operator of the vessel shall be responsible for the compliance by the vessel and its crew with each of the applicable national laws, and the vessel shall be operated in accordance with those laws.

§ 300.34 Reporting requirements.

(a) Holders of licenses issued under § 300.32 shall comply with the reporting requirements of this section with respect to the licensed vessels.

(b) Any information required to be recorded, or to be notified, communicated or reported pursuant to a requirement of these regulations, the Act, or the Treaty shall be true, complete and correct. Any change in circumstances that has the effect of rendering any of the information provided false, incomplete or misleading shall be communicated immediately to the Regional Administrator.

(c) The operator of any vessel licensed under § 300.32 must prepare and submit accurate, complete, and timely notifications, requests, and reports with respect to the licensed vessel, as described in paragraphs (c)(1) through (10) of this section.

(1) Catch report forms. A record of catch, effort and other information must be maintained on board the vessel, on catch report forms (also known as “Regional Purse Seine Logsheets”, or RPLs) provided by the Regional Administrator. At the end of each day that the vessel is in the Licensing Area, all information specified on the form must, for that day, be recorded on the form. The completed catch report form must be mailed by registered airmail to the Administrator within 14 days of the vessel's next entry into port for the purpose of unloading its fish catch. A copy of the completed catch report form must also be submitted to, and received by, the Regional Administrator within 2 days of the vessel reaching port.

(2) Unloading and transshipment logsheet forms. At the completion of any unloading or transshipment of fish from the vessel, all the information specified on unloading and transshipment logsheet forms provided by the Regional Administrator must, for that unloading or transshipment, be recorded on such forms. A separate form must be completed for each fish processing destination to which the unloaded or transshipped fish are bound. The completed unloading and transshipment logsheet form or forms must be mailed by registered airmail to the Administrator within 14 days of the completion of the unloading or transshipment. The submitted form must be accompanied by a report or reports of the size breakdown of the catch as determined by the receiver or receivers of the fish, and such report must be signed by the receiver or receivers. A copy of the completed unloading and transshipment logsheet, including a copy of the accompanying report or reports of the size breakdown of the catch as determined by the receiver or receivers of the fish, must also be submitted to, and received by, the Regional Administrator within 2 days of the completion of the unloading or transshipment.

(3) Port departure reports. Before the vessel's departure from port for the purpose of beginning a fishing trip in the Licensing Area, a report must be submitted to the Administrator by telex, transmission via VMS unit, facsimile, or e-mail that includes the following information: Report type (“LBEG”); Regional Register number; trip begin date; date and time (in UTC) of report; IRCS; port name; weight of catch on board (in metric tons) for each of skipjack tuna, yellowfin tuna, and all other species combined; intended action; and estimated date of departure. This information must be reported in the format provided by the Regional Administrator.

(4) Entry into port for unloading reports. At least 24 hours before the vessel's entry into port for the purpose of unloading fish from any trip involving fishing within the Licensing Area, a report must be submitted to the Administrator by telex, transmission via VMS unit, facsimile, or e-mail that includes the following information: Report type (“LFIN”); FFA Regional Register number; trip begin date; date and time (in UTC) of report; IRCS; port name; weight of catch on board (in metric tons) for each of skipjack tuna, yellowfin tuna, and all other species combined; intended action; and estimated date and time (in UTC) of entry into port. This information must be reported in the format provided by the Regional Administrator.

(5) Intent to transship notification and request. At least 48 hours before transshipping any or all of the fish on board the vessel, a notification must be submitted to the Administrator and a request must be submitted to the Pacific Island Party in whose jurisdiction the transshipment is requested to occur. The notification to the Administrator and the request to the Pacific Island Party may be identical. The notification and request must include the following information: Name of vessel; IRCS; vessel position (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc); weight of catch on board the vessel (in metric tons) for each of skipjack tuna, yellowfin tuna, and all other species combined; and the date, time (in UTC), and location where such transshipment is requested to occur. The notification to the Administrator must be reported in the format provided by the Regional Administrator and submitted by telex, transmission by VMS unit, facsimile, or e-mail. The request to the Pacific Island Party must be reported in the format provided by the Regional Administrator and sent via the means and to the address provided by the Regional Administrator.

(6) Zone entry and exit reports. Each time the vessel enters or exits the waters under the jurisdiction of a Pacific Island Party, a report must be submitted to that Pacific Island Party that includes the following information: Report type (“ZENT” for entry or “ZEXT” for exit); FFA Regional Register number; trip begin date; date and time (in UTC) of the entry or exit; IRCS; vessel position (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc); weight of catch on board (in metric tons) for each of skipjack tuna, yellowfin tuna, and all other species combined; and intended action. This information must be reported in the format provided by the Regional Administrator and sent via the means and to the address provided by the Regional Administrator.

(7) Weekly reports. Each Wednesday while the vessel is within the waters under the jurisdiction of a Pacific Island Party, a report must be submitted to that Pacific Island Party that includes the following information: Report type (“WEEK”); FFA Regional Register number; trip begin date; date and time (in UTC) of report; IRCS; vessel position (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc); weight of catch on board (in metric tons) for each of skipjack tuna, yellowfin tuna, and all other species combined; intended action; and whether or not there is a vessel observer on board (“Y” or “N”). This information must be reported in the format provided by the Regional Administrator and sent via the means and to the address provided by the Regional Administrator.

(8) Port entry reports. At least 24 hours before the vessel's entry into port of any Pacific Island Party, a report must be submitted to that Pacific Island Party that includes the following information: Report type (“PENT”); FFA Regional Register number; trip begin date; date and time (in UTC) of report; IRCS; vessel position (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc); weight of catch on board (in metric tons) for each of skipjack tuna, yellowfin tuna, and all other species combined; estimated time (in UTC) of entry into port; port name; and intended action. This information must be reported in the format provided by the Regional Administrator and sent via the means and to the address provided by the Regional Administrator.

(9) Transshipment reports. Upon completion of transshipment of any or all of the fish on board the vessel, a report must be submitted to the Administrator and to the Pacific Island Party in whose jurisdiction the transshipment occurred. The report must include the following information: Report type (“TRANS”); FFA Regional Register number; trip begin date; date and time (in UTC) of the transshipment; IRCS; vessel position at time of transshipment (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc); amount of fish transshipped (in metric tons) for each of skipjack tuna, yellowfin tuna, and all other species combined; name of vessel to which the fish were transshipped; and the destination of the transshipped fish. The report to the Administrator must be reported in the format provided by the Regional Administrator and submitted by telex, transmission by VMS unit, facsimile, or e-mail. The report to the Pacific Island Party must be reported in the format provided by the Regional Administrator and sent via the means and to the address provided by the Regional Administrator.

(10) Other reports and notifications to Pacific Island Parties. Reports and notifications must be submitted to the relevant Pacific Island Parties in each of the circumstances and in the manner described in the subparagraphs of this paragraph. Unless otherwise indicated in this paragraph, the reports must be prepared in the format provided by the Regional Administrator and sent via the means and to the address provided by the Regional Administrator.

(i) Australia.

(A) Each day while the vessel is within the Australian Fishing Zone, a report must be submitted that includes the following information: Vessel position (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc); and the amount of catch made during the previous day, by species.

(B) At least 24 hours before entering the Australian Fishing Zone, a notification must be submitted that indicates an intent to enter the Australian Fishing Zone.

(ii) Fiji.

(A) Each day while the vessel is in Fiji fisheries waters, a report must be submitted that includes the following information: vessel name; IRCS; country of registration of the vessel; and vessel position at the time of the report (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc).

(B) Each week while the vessel is in Fiji fisheries waters, a report must be submitted that includes the amount of the catch made during the preceding week, by species.

(iii) Kiribati.

(A) At least 24 hours before entering a Closed Area under the jurisdiction of Kiribati, a notification must be submitted that includes the following information: vessel name; IRCS; vessel position at the time of the report (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc); the reason for entering the Closed Area; and the estimated time (in UTC) of entry into the Closed Area (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc).

(B) Immediately upon entry into or exit from a Closed Area under the jurisdiction of Kiribati, a report must be submitted that includes the following information: report type (“CAENT” for entry or “CAEXT” for exit); the number of the vessel's license issued under § 300.32; IRCS; date and time (in UTC) of the report; vessel position (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc); amount of the catch on board the vessel, by species; and status of the boom (“up” or “down”), net (“deployed” or “stowed”), and skiff (“deployed” or “stowed”).

(C) At least 24 hours prior to fueling the vessel from a tanker in the area of jurisdiction of Kiribati, a report must be submitted that includes the following information: report type (“SBUNK”); the number of the vessel's license issued under § 300.32; IRCS; trip start date; name of port from which trip started; amount of the catch on board the vessel, by species; estimated time of bunkering; estimated position of bunkering (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc); and name of tanker.

(D) After fueling the vessel from a tanker in the area of jurisdiction of Kiribati, but no later than 12 noon local time on the following day, a report must be submitted that includes the following information: report type (“FBUNK”); the number of the vessel's license issued under § 300.32; IRCS; start time of bunkering; end time of bunkering; amount of fuel received, in kiloliters; and name of tanker.

(iv) New Zealand.

(A) At least 24 hours before entering the exclusive economic zone of New Zealand, a notification must be submitted that includes the following information: name of vessel; IRCS; position of point of entry into the exclusive economic zone of New Zealand (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc); amount of catch on board the vessel, by species; and condition of the catch on board the vessel (“fresh” or “frozen”).

(B) For each day that the vessel is in the exclusive economic zone of New Zealand, a notification must be submitted no later than noon of the following day of the vessel's position (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc) at noon.

(C) For each week or portion thereof that the vessel is in the exclusive economic zone of New Zealand, a report that covers the period from 12:01 a.m. on Monday to 12 midnight on the following Sunday must be submitted and received by noon of the following Wednesday (local time). The report must include the amount of the catch taken in the exclusive economic zone of New Zealand during the reporting period.

(D) At least 10 days prior to an intended transshipment in an area under the jurisdiction of New Zealand, a notification must be submitted that includes the intended port, date, and time of transshipment.

(E) At least 24 hours prior to exiting the exclusive economic zone of New Zealand, a notification must be submitted that includes the following information: position of the intended point of exit (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc); the amount of catch on board the vessel, by species; and condition of the catch on board the vessel (“fresh” or “frozen”).

(v) Solomon Islands.

(A) At least 24 hours prior to entry into Solomon Islands Fisheries Limits, a report must be submitted that includes the following information: expected vessel position (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc) and expected date and time of entry.

(B) For each week or portion thereof that the vessel is in the exclusive economic zone of Solomon Islands, a report that covers the period from 12:01 a.m. on Monday to 12 midnight on the following Sunday must be submitted and received by noon of the following Tuesday (local time). The report must include the amount of the catch taken and the number of fishing days spent in the exclusive economic zone of Solomon Islands during the reporting period.

(vi) Tonga.

(A) Each day while the vessel is in the exclusive economic zone of Tonga, a report must be submitted that includes the vessel's position (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc).

(B) [Reserved]

(vii) Tuvalu.

(A) At least 24 hours prior to entering Tuvalu fishery limits, a report must be submitted that includes the following information: vessel name; IRCS; country of registration of the vessel; the number of the vessel's license issued under § 300.32; intended vessel position (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc) at entry; and amount of catch on board the vessel, by species.

(B) Every seventh day that the vessel is in Tuvalu fishery limits, a report must be submitted that includes vessel position (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc) and the total amount of catch on board the vessel.

(C) Immediately upon exit from Tuvalu fishery limits, a notification must be submitted that includes vessel position (latitude and longitude to nearest minute of arc) and the total amount of catch on board the vessel.

[72 FR 6151, Feb. 9, 2007]

§ 300.35 Vessel and gear identification.

While a vessel is in the Licensing Area, a Limited Area closed to fishing, or a Closed Area, a recent and up-to-date copy of the International Code of Signals (INTERCO) shall be on board and accessible at all times. The operator shall comply with the 1989 Food and Agricultural Organization standard specifications for the marking and identification of fishing vessels. The international radio call sign of the vessel shall be painted in white on a black background, or in black on a white background, and be clear, distinct, and uncovered, in the following manner:

(a) On both sides of the vessel's hull or superstructure, with each letter and number being at least 1 m high and having a stroke width of 16.7 cm, with the background extending to provide a border around the mark of not less than 16.7 cm.

(b) On the vessel's deck, on the body of any helicopter and on the hull of any skiff, with each letter and number being at least 30 cm high, and having a stroke width of 5 cm with the background extending to provide a border around the mark of not less than 5 cm.

(c) On any other equipment being carried by and intended to be separated from the vessel during normal fishing operations, with each letter and number being at least 10 cm high and having a stroke width of 1.7 cm, with the background extending to provide a border around the mark of not less than 1.7 cm.

§ 300.36 Closed area stowage requirements.

At all times while a vessel is in a Closed Area, the fishing gear of the vessel shall be stowed in a manner as not to be readily available for fishing. In particular, the boom shall be lowered as far as possible so that the vessel cannot be used for fishing, but so that the skiff is accessible for use in emergency situations; the helicopter, if any shall be tied down; and launches shall be secured.

§ 300.37 Radio monitoring.

The international distress frequency, 2.182 mHz, and 156.8 mHz (Channel 16, VHF) shall be monitored continuously from the vessel for the purpose of facilitating communication with the fisheries management, surveillance and enforcement authorities of the Parties.

§ 300.38 Prohibitions.

(a) Except as provided for in § 300.39, in addition to the prohibitions in § 300.4, it is unlawful for any person subject to the jurisdiction of the United States to do any of the following:

(1) To violate the Act or any provision of any regulation or order issued pursuant to Act.

(2) To use a vessel for fishing in violation of an applicable national law.

(3) To violate the terms and conditions of any fishing arrangement to which that person is a party.

(4) To use a vessel for fishing in any Closed Area.

(5) To refuse to permit any authorized officer or authorized party officer to board a fishing vessel for purpose of conducting a search or inspection in connection with the enforcement of the Act or the Treaty.

(6) To refuse to comply with the instructions of an authorized officer or authorized party officer relating to fishing activities under the Treaty.

(7) To refuse to permit an authorized inspector full access to any place where fish taken in the Licensing Area is unloaded.

(8) To refuse to allow an authorized inspector to remove samples of fish from a vessel that fished in the Licensing Area.

(9) To forcibly assault, resist, oppose, impede, intimidate, or interfere with:

(i) Any authorized officer, authorized party officer or authorized inspector in the conduct of a search or inspection in connection with the enforcement of these regulations, the Act or the Treaty; or

(ii) An observer in the conduct of observer duties under the Treaty.

(10) To transship fish on board a vessel that fished in the Licensing Area, except in accordance with the requirements of § 300.46.

(11) To fail to have installed, allow to be programmed, carry, or have operational a VMS unit while in the Treaty Area as specified in § 300.45(a).

(12) To fail to activate a VMS unit, to interrupt, interfere with, or impede the operation of a VMS unit, to tamper with, alter, damage, or disable a VMS unit, or to move or remove a VMS unit without prior notification as specified in § 300.45(e).

(13) In the event of a VMS unit failure or breakdown or interruption of automatic position reporting in the Treaty Area, to fail to submit manual position reports as specified in § 300.45(f).

(14) In the event of a VMS unit failure or breakdown or interruption of automatic position reporting in the Treaty Area and if directed by the Administrator or an authorized officer, to fail to stow fishing gear or take the vessel to a designated port as specified in § 300.45(f).

(15) To fail to repair or replace a VMS unit as specified in § 300.45(h).

(b) Except as provided for in § 300.39, it is unlawful for any person subject to the jurisdiction of the United States when in the Licensing Area:

(1) To use a vessel to fish unless validly licensed as required by the Administrator.

(2) To use a vessel for directed fishing for southern bluefin tuna or for fishing for any kinds of fish other than tunas, except that fish may be caught as an incidental bycatch.

(3) To use a vessel for fishing by any method, except the purse-seine method.

(4) To use any vessel to engage in fishing after the revocation of its license, or during the period of suspension of an applicable license.

(5) To operate a vessel in such a way as to disrupt or in any other way adversely affect the activities of traditional and locally based fishermen and fishing vessels.

(6) To use a vessel to fish in a manner inconsistent with an order issued by the Secretary under § 300.42 (section 11 of the Act).

(7) Except for circumstances involving force majeure and other emergencies involving the health or safety of crew members or the safety of the vessel, to use aircraft in association with fishing activities of a vessel, unless it is identified on the license application for the vessel, or any amendment thereto.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 72 FR 6153, Feb. 9, 2007]

§ 300.39 Exceptions.

(a) The prohibitions of § 300.38 and the licensing requirements of § 300.32 do not apply to fishing for albacore tuna by vessels using the trolling method or to fishing by vessels using the longline method in the high seas areas of the Treaty Area.

(b) The prohibitions of § 300.38(a)(4), (a)(5), and (b)(3) do not apply to fishing under the terms and conditions of a fishing arrangement.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 72 FR 6153, Feb. 9, 2007]

§ 300.40 Civil penalties.

The procedures of 15 CFR part 904 apply to the assessment of civil penalties, except as modified by the requirements of section 8 of the Act.

§ 300.41 Investigation notification.

Upon commencement of an investigation under section 10(b)(1) of the Act, the operator of any vessel concerned shall have 30 days after receipt of notification of the investigation and the operator's rights under section 10(b)(1) to submit comments, information, or evidence bearing on the investigation, and to request in writing that the Secretary provide the operator an opportunity to present the comments, information, or evidence orally to the Secretary or the Secretary's representative.

§ 300.42 Findings leading to removal from fishing area.

(a) Following an investigation conducted under section 10(b) of the Act, the Secretary, with the concurrence of the Secretary of State, and upon the request of the Pacific Island Party concerned, may order a fishing vessel that has not submitted to the jurisdiction of that Pacific Island Party to leave immediately the Licensing Area, all Limited Areas, and all Closed Areas upon making a finding that:

(1) The fishing vessel -

(i) While fishing in the Licensing Area did not have a license issued under § 300.32 to fish in the Licensing Area, and that under the terms of the Treaty the fishing is not authorized to be conducted in the Licensing Area without such a license.

(ii) Was involved in any incident in which an authorized officer, authorized party officer, or observer was allegedly assaulted with resultant bodily harm, physically threatened, forcibly resisted, refused boarding or subjected to physical intimidation or physical interference in the performance of duties as authorized by the Act or the Treaty;

(iii) Has not made full payment within 60 days of any amount due as a result of a final judgement or other final determination deriving from a violation in waters within the Treaty Area of a Pacific Island Party; or

(iv) Was not represented by an agent for service of process in accordance with the Treaty; or

(2) There is probable cause to believe that the fishing vessel -

(i) Was used in violation of section 5(a)(4), (a)(5), (b)(2), or (b)(3) of the Act;

(ii) Used an aircraft in violation of section 5(b)(7) of the Act; or

(iii) Was involved in an incident in which section 5(a)(7) of the Act was violated.

(b) Upon being advised by the Secretary of State that proper notification to Parties has been made by a Pacific Island Party that such Pacific Island Party is investigating an alleged infringement of the Treaty by a vessel in waters under the jurisdiction of that Pacific Island Party, the Secretary shall order the vessel to leave those waters until the Secretary of State notifies the Secretary that the order is no longer necessary.

(c) The Secretary shall rescind any order issued on the basis of a finding under paragraphs (a)(1) (iii) or (iv) of this section (subsections 11(a)(1) (C) or (D) of the Act) as soon as the Secretary determines that the facts underlying the finding do not apply.

(d) An order issued in accordance with this section is not subject to judicial review.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 72 FR 6154, Feb. 9, 2007]

§ 300.43 Observers.

(a) The operator and each member of the crew of a vessel shall allow and assist any person identified as an observer under the Treaty by the Pacific Island Parties:

(1) To board the vessel for scientific, compliance, monitoring and other functions at the point and time notified by the Pacific Island Parties to the Secretary.

(2) Without interfering unduly with the lawful operation of the vessel, to have full access to and use of facilities and equipment on board the vessel that the observer may determine are necessary to carry out observer duties; have full access to the bridge, fish on board, and areas that may be used to hold, process, weigh and store fish; remove samples; have full access to vessel's records, including its log and documentation for the purpose of inspection and copying; have reasonable access to navigation equipment, charts, and radios, and gather any other information relating to fisheries in the Licensing Area.

(3) To disembark at the point and time notified by the Pacific Island Parties to the Secretary.

(4) To carry out observer duties safely.

(b) The operator shall provide the observer, while on board the vessel, at no expense to the Pacific Island Parties, with food, accommodation and medical facilities of reasonable standard as may be acceptable to the Pacific Island Party whose representative is serving as the observer.

§ 300.44 Other inspections.

The operator and each member of the crew of any vessel from which any fish taken in the Licensing Area is unloaded or transshipped shall allow, or arrange for, and assist any authorized inspector, authorized party officer, or authorized officer to have full access to any place where the fish is unloaded or transshipped, to remove samples, to have full access to the vessel's records, including its log and documentation for the purpose of inspection and photocopying, and to gather any other information relating to fisheries in the Licensing Area without interfering unduly with the lawful operation of the vessel.

§ 300.45 Vessel Monitoring System.

(a) Applicability. Holders of vessel licenses issued under § 300.32 are required, in order to have the licensed vessel in the Treaty Area, to:

(1) Have installed a VMS unit on board the licensed vessel;

(2) Allow the Administrator, its agent, or a person authorized by the Administrator to program the VMS unit to transmit position and related information to the Administrator;

(3) If directed by the Regional Administrator, allow NMFS, its agent, or a person authorized by NMFS to program the VMS unit to transmit position and related information to NMFS; and

(4) Carry and have operational the VMS unit at all times while in the Treaty Area, except as provided in paragraphs (f) and (g) of this section.

(b) FFA Vessel Register. Purse seine vessels must be in good standing on the FFA Vessel Register maintained by the Administrator in order to be licensed under the Treaty. FFA Vessel Register application forms may be obtained from the Regional Administrator or the Administrator or from the FFA Web site: http://www.ffa.int. Purse seine vessel owners or operators must submit completed FFA Vessel Register applications to the Regional Administrator for transmittal to the Administrator and pay fees for registration of their vessel(s) on the FFA Vessel Register annually. The vessel owner or operator may submit a completed FFA Vessel Register application form at any time, but the application must be received by the Regional Administrator at least seven days before the first day of the next licensing period to avoid the potential lapse of the registration and license between licensing periods.

(c) VMS unit installation. A VMS unit required under this section must be installed by a person authorized by the Administrator. A list of Administrator-authorized VMS unit installers may be obtained from the Regional Administrator or the Administrator.

(d) Hardware and software specifications. The VMS unit installed and carried on board a vessel to comply with the requirements of this section must consist of hardware and software that is approved by the Administrator and approved by NMFS. A current list of hardware and software approved by the Administrator may be obtained from the Administrator. A current list of hardware and software approved by NMFS may be obtained from NMFS.

(e) Service activation. Other than when in port or in a shipyard and having given proper notification to the Administrator as specified in paragraph (g) of this section, the owner or operator of a vessel licensed under § 300.32 must, when the vessel is in the Treaty Area:

(1) Activate the VMS unit on board the licensed vessel to transmit automatic position reports;

(2) Ensure that no person interrupts, interferes with, or impedes the operation of the VMS unit or tampers with, alters, damages, or disables the VMS unit, or attempts any of the same; and

(3) Ensure that no person moves or removes the VMS unit from the installed position without first notifying the Administrator by telephone, facsimile, or e-mail of such movement or removal.

(f) Interruption of VMS unit signal. When a vessel owner or operator is notified by the Administrator or an authorized officer that automatic position reports are not being received, or the vessel owner or operator is otherwise alerted or aware that transmission of automatic position reports has been interrupted, the vessel owner and operator must comply with the following:

(1) The vessel owner or operator must submit manual position reports that include vessel name, call sign, current position (latitude and longitude to the nearest minute), date, and time to the Administrator by telephone, facsimile, or e-mail at intervals of no greater than eight hours or a shorter interval if and as specified by the Administrator or an authorized officer. The reports must continue to be submitted until the Administrator has confirmed to the vessel owner or operator that the VMS unit is properly transmitting position reports. If the manual position reports cannot be made, the vessel operator or owner must notify the Administrator of such as soon as possible, by any means possible.

(2) If directed by the Administrator or an authorized officer, the vessel operator must immediately stow the fishing gear in the manner described in § 300.36, take the vessel directly to a port designated by the Administrator or authorized officer, and notify the Administrator by telephone, facsimile, or e-mail as soon as possible that the vessel is being taken to port with fishing gear stowed.

(g) Shutdown of VMS unit while in port or in shipyard. When a vessel is in port and not moving, the VMS unit may be shut down, provided that the Administrator has been notified by telephone, facsimile, or e-mail that the vessel is in port and of the intended shutdown, and only as long as manual position reports as described in paragraph (f)(1) of this section are submitted to the Administrator at intervals of no greater than 24 hours or a shorter interval if and as specified by the Administrator or an authorized officer. If the VMS unit is shut down while the vessel is in port, the vessel owner or operator must notify the Administrator by telephone, facsimile, or e-mail as soon as possible after the vessel's departure from port. When the vessel is in a shipyard, the VMS unit may be shut down and the submission of manual position reports is not required, provided that the Administrator has been notified by telephone, facsimile, or e-mail that the vessel is in the shipyard and of the intended VMS unit shutdown. If the VMS unit is shut down while the vessel is in a shipyard, the vessel owner or operator must notify the Administrator by telephone, facsimile, or e-mail as soon as possible after the vessel's departure from the shipyard.

(h) VMS unit repair and replacement. After a fishing trip during which interruption of automatic position reports has occurred, the vessel's owner or operator must have the VMS unit repaired or replaced prior to the vessel's next trip. If the VMS unit is replaced, the new VMS unit must be installed by an Administrator-authorized VMS unit installer, as specified in paragraph (c) of this section. In making such repairs or replacements, conformity with the current requirements must be met before the vessel may lawfully operate under the Treaty.

(i) Access to data. As a condition to obtaining a license, holders of vessel licenses issued under § 300.32 must allow the Regional Administrator, an authorized officer, the Administrator or an authorized party officer or designees access to the vessel's position data obtained from the VMS unit at the time of, or after, its transmission to the vendor or receiver.

[72 FR 6154, Feb. 9, 2007, as amended at 75 FR 74648, Dec. 1, 2010]

§ 300.46 Transshipping requirements.

(a) Applicability. This section applies to vessels licensed under § 300.32.

(b) Transshipping may only be done at the time and place authorized for transshipment by the Pacific Island Parties, following the notification and request requirements of § 300.34(c)(5).

(c) The operator and each member of the crew of a vessel from which any fish taken in the Licensing Area is transshipped must:

(1) Allow and assist any person identified as an officer of the Pacific Island Party to:

(i) Have full access to the vessel and any place where such fish is being transshipped and the use of facilities and equipment that the officer may determine is necessary to carry out his or her duties;

(ii) Have full access to the bridge, fish on board and areas which may be used to hold, process, weigh and store fish;

(iii) Remove samples;

(iv) Have full access to the vessel's records, including its log and documentation, for the purpose of inspection and copying; and

(v) Gather any other information required to fully monitor the activity without interfering unduly with the lawful operation of the vessel; and

(2) Not assault, obstruct, resist, delay, refuse boarding to, intimidate, or interfere with any person identified as an officer of the Pacific Island Party in the performance of his or her duties.

(d) Transshipping at sea may only be done:

(1) In a designated area in accordance with such terms and conditions as may be agreed between the operator of the vessel and the Pacific Island Party in whose jurisdiction the transshipment is to take place;

(2) In accordance with the requirements of § 300.34; and

(3) If the catch is transshipped to a carrier vessel duly authorized in accordance with national laws.

[72 FR 6155, Feb. 9, 2007]

Subpart E - Pacific Halibut Fisheries
Authority:

16 U.S.C. 773-773k.

§ 300.60 Purpose and scope.

This subpart implements the North Pacific Halibut Act of 1982 (Act) and is intended to supplement, not conflict with, the annual fishery management measures adopted by the International Pacific Halibut Commission (Commission) under the Convention between the United States and Canada for the Preservation of the Halibut Fishery of the Northern Pacific Ocean and Bering Sea (Convention).

§ 300.61 Definitions.

In addition to the terms defined in § 300.2 and those in the Act and the Convention, the terms used in this subpart have the following meanings. If a term is defined differently in § 300.2, the Act, or the Convention, the definition in this section shall apply.

Alaska Native tribe means, for purposes of the subsistence fishery for Pacific halibut in waters in and off Alaska, a Federally recognized Alaska Native tribe that has customary and traditional use of halibut and that is listed in § 300.65(g)(2) of this part.

Annual combined catch limit, for purposes of commercial and sport fishing in Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A, means the annual total allowable halibut removals (halibut harvest plus wastage) by persons fishing IFQ and by charter vessel anglers.

Annual commercial catch limit, for purposes of commercial fishing in:

(1) Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A, means the annual commercial allocation minus an area-specific estimate of commercial halibut wastage.

(2) Commission regulatory areas 3B and 4A, means the annual total allowable halibut removals by persons fishing IFQ.

(3) Commission regulatory areas 4B, 4C, 4D, and 4E, means the annual total allowable halibut removals by persons fishing IFQ and CDQ.

Annual guided sport catch limit, for purposes of sport fishing in Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A, means the annual guided sport allocation minus an area-specific estimate of guided sport halibut wastage.

Area 2A includes all waters off the States of California, Oregon, and Washington.

Area 2C includes all waters off Alaska that are east of a line running 340° true from Cape Spencer Light (58° 11′ 54″ N. lat., 136° 38′ 24″ W. long.) and south and east of a line running 205° true from said light.

Area 3A means all waters between Area 2C and a line extending from the most northerly point on Cape Aklek (57°41′15″ N. latitude, 155°35′00″ W. longitude) to Cape Ikolik (57°17′17″ N. latitude, 154°47′18″ W. longitude), then along the Kodiak Island coastline to Cape Trinity (56°44′50″ N. latitude, 154°08′44″ W. longitude), then 140° true.

Charter halibut permit means a permit issued by the National Marine Fisheries Service pursuant to § 300.67.

Charter vessel, for purposes of §§ 300.65, 300.66, and 300.67, means a vessel used while providing or receiving sport fishing guide services for halibut.

Charter vessel angler, for purposes of §§ 300.65, 300.66, and 300.67, means a person, paying or non-paying, receiving sport fishing guide services for halibut.

Charter vessel fishing trip, for purposes of §§ 300.65, 300.66, and 300.67, means the time period between the first deployment of fishing gear into the water from a charter vessel by a charter vessel angler and the offloading of one or more charter vessel anglers or any halibut from that vessel.

Charter vessel guide, for purposes of §§ 300.65, 300.66 and 300.67, means a person who holds an annual sport fishing guide license or registration issued by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, or a person who provides sport fishing guide services.

Charter vessel operator, for purposes of § 300.65, means the person in control of the charter vessel during a charter vessel fishing trip.

Chiniak Bay means all waters bounded by the shoreline and straight lines connecting the coordinates in the order listed:

(1) North from Cape Chiniak (57°37.22′ N. lat., 152°9.36′ W. long.);

(2) To Buoy #1 at Williams Reef (57°50.36′ N. lat., 152°8.82′ W. long.);

(3) To East Cape on Spruce Island (57°54.89′ N. lat., 152°19.45′ W. long.);

(4) To Termination Point on Kodiak Island (57°51.31′ N. lat., 152°24.01′ W. long.); and

(5) Connecting to a line running counterclockwise along the shoreline of Kodiak Island to Cape Chiniak (57°37.22′ N. lat., 152°9.36′ W. long.).

Commercial fishing means fishing, the resulting catch of which either is, or is intended to be, sold or bartered but does not include subsistence fishing.

Commission means the International Pacific Halibut Commission.

Commission regulatory area means an area defined by the Commission for purposes of the Convention identified in 50 CFR 300.60 and prescribed in the annual management measures published pursuant to 50 CFR 300.62.

Community charter halibut permit means a permit issued by NMFS to a Community Quota Entity pursuant to § 300.67.

Compensation, for purposes of sport fishing for Pacific halibut in Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A, means direct or indirect payment, remuneration, or other benefits received in return for services, regardless of the source; for this definition, “benefits” includes wages or other employment benefits given directly or indirectly to an individual or organization, and any dues, payments, fees, or other remuneration given directly or indirectly to a fishing club, business, organization, or individual who provides sport fishing guide services; and does not include reimbursement for the actual daily expenses for fuel, food, or bait.

Crew member, for purposes of §§ 300.65 and 300.67, means an assistant, deckhand, or similar person who works directly under the supervision of, and on the same vessel as, a charter vessel guide or operator of a vessel with one or more charter vessel anglers on board.

Customary trade means, for purposes of the subsistence fishery for Pacific halibut in waters in and off Alaska, the non-commercial exchange of subsistence halibut for anything other than items of significant value.

Fishing means the taking, harvesting, or catching of fish, or any activity that can reasonably be expected to result in the taking, harvesting, or catching of fish, including:

(1) The deployment of any amount or component part of setline gear anywhere in the maritime area;

(2) The deployment of longline pot gear as defined in § 679.2 of this title, or component part of that gear in Commission regulatory areas 2C, 3A, 3B, and that portion of Area 4A in the Gulf of Alaska west of Area 3B and east of 170°00′ W. long; or

(3) The deployment of pot gear as defined in § 679.2 of this title in Commission regulatory areas 4B, 4C, 4D, and 4E and the portion of Area 4A in the Bering Sea Aleutian Islands west of 170°00′ W long.

Fishing week, for purposes of § 300.65(d), means a time period that begins at 0001 hours, A.l.t., Monday morning and ends at 2400 hours, A.l.t., the following Sunday night.

Guided Angler Fish (GAF) means halibut transferred within a year from a Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A IFQ permit holder to a GAF permit that is issued to a person holding a charter halibut permit, community charter halibut permit, or military charter halibut permit for the corresponding area.

Guided Angler Fish (GAF) permit means an annual permit issued by the National Marine Fisheries Service pursuant to § 300.65(c)(5)(iii).

Guided Angler Fish (GAF) permit holder means the person identified on a GAF permit.

Halibut harvest means the catching and retaining of any halibut.

Head-on length means a straight line measurement passing over the pectoral fin from the tip of the lower jaw with the mouth closed to the extreme end of the middle of the tail.

Individual Fishing Quota (IFQ), for purposes of this subpart, means the annual catch limit of halibut that may be harvested by a person who is lawfully allocated a harvest privilege for a specific portion of the annual commercial catch limit of halibut.

IFQ fishing trip, for purposes of the subpart, means the period beginning when a vessel operator commences harvesting IFQ halibut and ending when the vessel operator lands any species.

IFQ halibut means any halibut that is harvested with setline gear as defined in this section or fixed gear as defined in § 679.2 of this title while commercial fishing in any IFQ regulatory area defined in § 679.2 of this title.

Military charter halibut permit means a permit issued by NMFS to a United States Military Morale, Welfare and Recreation Program pursuant to § 300.67.

Overall length of a vessel means the horizontal distance, rounded to the nearest ft/meter, between the foremost part of the stem and the aftermost part of the stern (excluding bowsprits, rudders, outboard motor brackets, and similar fittings or attachments).

Person includes an individual, corporation, firm, or association.

Power hauling means using electrically, hydraulically, or mechanically powered devices or attachments or other assisting devises or attachments to deploy and retrieve fishing gear. Power hauling does not include the use of hand power, a hand powered crank, a fishing rod, a downrigger, or a hand troll gurdy.

Rural means, for purposes of the subsistence fishery for Pacific halibut in waters in and off Alaska, a community of Alaska listed at § 300.65(g)(1) or an area of Alaska described at § 300.65(g)(3) in which the non-commercial, customary, and traditional use of fish and game for personal or family consumption is a principal characteristic of the economy or area and in which there is a long-term, customary, and traditional use of halibut.

Rural resident means, for purposes of the subsistence fishery for Pacific halibut in waters in and off Alaska:

(1) An individual domiciled in a rural community listed in the table at § 300.65(g)(1) and who has maintained a domicile in rural communities listed in the table at § 300.65(g)(1), or in rural areas described at § 300.65(g)(3), for the 12 consecutive months immediately preceding the time when the assertion of residence is made, and who is not claiming residency in another state, territory, or country; or

(2) An individual domiciled in a rural area described at § 300.65(g)(3) and who has maintained a domicile in rural areas described at § 300.65(g)(3), or in rural communities listed in the table at § 300.65(g)(1), for the 12 consecutive months immediately preceding the time when the assertion of residence is made, and who is not claiming residency in another state, territory, or country.

Setline gear means one or more stationary, buoyed, and anchored lines with hooks attached.

Sport fishing means:

(1) In regulatory area 2A, all fishing other than commercial fishing and treaty Indian ceremonial and subsistence fishing; and

(2) In waters in and off Alaska, all fishing other than commercial fishing and subsistence fishing.

Sport fishing guide services, for purposes of §§ 300.65(d) and 300.67, means assistance, for compensation or with the intent to receive compensation, to a person who is sport fishing, to take or attempt to take halibut by accompanying or physically directing the sport fisherman in sport fishing activities during any part of a charter vessel fishing trip. Sport fishing guide services do not include services provided by a crew member, as defined at § 300.61.

Subarea 2A-1 includes the usual and accustomed fishing areas for Pacific Coast treaty tribes off the coast of Washington and all inland marine waters of Washington north of Point Chehalis (46°53.30′ N lat.), including Puget Sound. Boundaries of a tribe's fishing area may be revised as ordered by a Federal court.

Subsistence means, with respect to waters in and off Alaska, the non-commercial, long-term, customary and traditional use of halibut.

Subsistence halibut means halibut caught by a rural resident or a member of an Alaska Native tribe for direct personal or family consumption as food, sharing for personal or family consumption as food, or customary trade.

Subsistence halibut registration certificate (SHARC) means documentation, issued by NMFS, of the registration required at § 300.65(i).

Treaty Indian tribes means the Hoh, Jamestown S'Klallam, Lower Elwha S'Klallam, Lummi, Makah, Port Gamble S'Klallam, Quileute, Quinault, Skokomish, Suquamish, Swinomish, Tulalip, and Nooksack tribes.

Valid, with respect to a charter halibut permit for purposes of §§ 300.66 and 300.67, means the charter halibut permit that is currently in effect.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996]

§ 300.62 Annual management measures.

Annual management measures may be added and modified through adoption by the Commission and publication in the Federal Register by the Assistant Administrator, with immediate regulatory effect. Such measures may include, inter alia, provisions governing: Licensing of vessels, inseason actions, regulatory areas, fishing periods, closed periods, closed areas, catch limits (quotas), fishing period limits, size limits, careful release of halibut, vessel clearances, logs, receipt and possession of halibut, fishing gear, retention of tagged halibut, supervision of unloading and weighing, and sport fishing for halibut. The Assistant Administrator will publish the Commission's regulations setting forth annual management measures in the Federal Register by March 15 each year. Annual management measures may be adjusted inseason by the Commission.

§ 300.63 Catch sharing plan and domestic management measures in Area 2A.

(a) A catch sharing plan (CSP) may be developed by the Pacific Fishery Management Council and approved by NMFS for portions of the fishery. Any approved CSP may be obtained from the Administrator, West Coast Region, NMFS.

(b)

(1) Each year, before January 1, NMFS will publish a proposal to govern the recreational fishery under the CSP for the following year and will seek public comment. The comment period will extend until after the Commission's annual meeting, so the public will have the opportunity to consider the final area 2A total allowable catch (TAC) before submitting comments. After the Commission's annual meeting and review of public comments, NMFS will publish in the Federal Register the final rule governing sport fishing in area 2A. Annual management measures may be adjusted inseason by NMFS.

(2) A portion of the commercial TAC is allocated as incidental catch in the salmon troll fishery in Area 2A. Each year the landing restrictions necessary to keep the fishery within its allocation will be recommended by the Pacific Fishery Management Council at its spring meetings, and will be published in the Federal Register along with the annual salmon management measures.

(3) A portion of the Area 2A Washington recreational TAC is allocated as incidental catch in the sablefish primary fishery north of 46°53.30′ N lat. (Pt. Chehalis, Washington), which is regulated under 50 CFR 660.231. This fishing opportunity is only available in years in which the Washington recreational TAC is 214, 110 lb (97.1 mt) or greater, provided that a minimum of 10,000 lb (4.5 mt) is available to the sablefish fishery. Each year that this harvest is available, the landing restrictions necessary to keep this fishery within its allocation will be recommended by the Pacific Fishery Management Council at its spring meetings, and will be published in the Federal Register. These restrictions will be designed to ensure the halibut harvest is incidental to the sablefish harvest and will be based on the amounts of halibut and sablefish available to this fishery, and other pertinent factors. The restrictions may include catch or landing ratios, landing limits, or other means to control the rate of halibut landings.

(i) In years when this incidental harvest of halibut in the sablefish primary fishery north of 46°53.30′ N. lat. is allowed, it is allowed only for vessels using longline gear that are registered to groundfish limited entry permits with sablefish endorsements and that possess the appropriate incidental halibut harvest license issued by the Commission.

(ii) It is unlawful for any person to possess, land or purchase halibut south of 46°53.30′ N. lat. that were taken and retained as incidental catch authorized by this section in the sablefish primary fishery.

(4) The commercial longline fishery in area 2A is governed by the annual management measures published pursuant to §§ 300.62 and 300.63.

(5) The treaty Indian fishery is governed by § 300.64 and tribal regulations. The annual quota for the fishery will be announced with the Commission regulations under § 300.62

(c) Flexible Inseason Management Provisions for Sport Halibut Fisheries in Area 2A.

(1) The Regional Administrator, NMFS West Coast Region, after consultation with the Chairman of the Pacific Fishery Management Council, the Commission Executive Director, and the Fisheries Director(s) of the affected state(s), or their designees, is authorized to modify regulations during the season after making the following determinations:

(i) The action is necessary to allow allocation objectives to be met.

(ii) The action will not result in exceeding the catch limit for the area.

(iii) If any of the sport fishery subareas north of Cape Falcon, Oregon are not projected to utilize their respective quotas by September 30, NMFS may take inseason action to transfer any projected unused quota to another Washington sport subarea.

(iv) If any of the sport fishery subareas south of Leadbetter Point, Washington, are not projected to utilize their respective quotas by their season ending dates, NMFS may take inseason action to transfer any projected unused quota to another Oregon sport subarea.

(v) Notwithstanding regulations at (c)(1)(i) of this section, if the total estimated yelloweye rockfish bycatch mortality from recreational halibut trips in all Oregon subareas is projected to exceed 22 percent of the annual Oregon recreational yelloweye rockfish harvest guideline, NMFS may take inseason action to reduce yelloweye rockfish bycatch mortality in the halibut fishery while allowing allocation objectives to be met to the extent possible.

(2) Flexible inseason management provisions include, but are not limited to, the following:

(i) Modification of sport fishing periods;

(ii) Modification of sport fishing bag limits;

(iii) Modification of sport fishing size limits;

(iv) Modification of sport fishing days per calendar week;

(v) Modification of subarea quotas; and

(vi) Modification of the Stonewall Bank Yelloweye Rockfish Conservation Area (YRCA) restrictions off Oregon using YRCA expansions as defined in groundfish regulations at 50 CFR 660.70(g) or (h).

(3) Notice procedures.

(i) Actions taken under this section will be published in the Federal Register.

(ii) Actual notice of inseason management actions will be provided by a telephone hotline administered by the West Coast Region, NMFS, at 206-526-6667 or 800-662-9825. Since provisions of these regulations may be altered by inseason actions, sport fishers should monitor the telephone hotline for current information for the area in which they are fishing.

(4) Effective dates.

(i) Any action issued under this section is effective on the date specified in the publication or at the time that the action is filed for public inspection with the Office of the Federal Register, whichever is later.

(ii) If time allows, NMFS will invite public comment prior to the effective date of any inseason action filed with the Federal Register. If the Regional Administrator determines, for good cause, that an inseason action must be filed without affording a prior opportunity for public comment, public comments will be received for a period of 15 days after publication of the action in the Federal Register.

(iii) Any inseason action issued under this section will remain in effect until the stated expiration date or until rescinded, modified, or superseded. However, no inseason action has any effect beyond the end of the calendar year in which it is issued.

(5) Availability of data. The Regional Administrator will compile, in aggregate form, all data and other information relevant to the action being taken and will make them available for public review during normal office hours at the West Coast Regional Office, NMFS, Sustainable Fisheries Division, 7600 Sand Point Way NE., Seattle, Washington.

(d) Fishery Election in Area 2A.

(1) A vessel that fishes in Area 2A may participate in only one of the following three fisheries in Area 2A:

(i) The sport fishery established in the annual domestic management measures and International Pacific Halibut Commission (IPHC) regulations and defined at § 300.61;

(ii) The commercial directed fishery for halibut during the fishing period(s) established in the annual domestic management measures and IPHC regulations and/or the incidental retention of halibut during the sablefish primary fishery described at 50 CFR 660.231; or

(iii) The incidental catch fishery during the salmon troll fishery as authorized in the annual domestic management measures and IPHC regulations.

(2) No person shall fish for halibut in the sport fishery in Area 2A under the annual domestic management measures and IPHC regulations, from a vessel that has been used during the same calendar year for commercial halibut fishing in Area 2A, or that has been issued a permit for the same calendar year for the commercial halibut fishery in Area 2A.

(3) No person shall fish for halibut in the directed commercial halibut fishery during the fishing periods established in the annual domestic management measures and IPHC regulations, and/or retain halibut incidentally taken in the sablefish primary fishery in Area 2A from a vessel that has been used during the same calendar year for the incidental catch fishery during the salmon troll fishery, as authorized in the annual domestic management measures and IPHC regulations.

(4) No person shall fish for halibut in the directed commercial halibut fishery and/or retain halibut incidentally taken in the sablefish primary fishery in Area 2A from a vessel that, during the same calendar year, has been used in the sport halibut fishery in Area 2A or that is licensed for the sport charter halibut fishery in Area 2A.

(5) No person shall retain halibut in the salmon troll fishery in Area 2A as authorized under the annual domestic management measures and IPHC regulations, taken on a vessel that, during the same calendar year, has been used in the sport halibut fishery in Area 2A, or that is licensed for the sport charter halibut fishery in Area 2A.

(6) No person shall retain halibut in the salmon troll fishery in Area 2A as authorized under the annual domestic management measures and IPHC regulations, taken on a vessel that, during the same calendar year, has been used in the directed commercial halibut fishery during the fishing periods established in the annual domestic management measures and IPHC regulations, and/or retained halibut incidentally taken in the sablefish primary fishery for Area 2A or that is licensed to participate in these commercial fisheries during the fishing periods established in the annual domestic management measures and IPHC regulations in Area 2A.

(e) Area 2A Non-Treaty Commercial Fishery Closed Areas.

(1) Non-treaty commercial vessels operating in the directed commercial fishery for halibut in Area 2A are required to fish outside of a closed area, known as the Rockfish Conservation Area (RCA), that extends along the coast from the U.S./Canada border south to 40°10′ N. lat. Between the U.S./Canada border and 46°16′ N. lat., the eastern boundary of the RCA, is the shoreline. Between 46°16′ N. lat. and 40°10′ N. lat., the RCA is defined along an eastern boundary by a line approximating the 30-fm (55-m) depth contour. Coordinates for the 30-fm (55-m) boundary are listed at 50 CFR 660.71(e). Between the U.S./Canada border and 40°10′ N. lat., the RCA is defined along a western boundary approximating the 100-fm (183-m) depth contour. Coordinates for the 100-fm (183-m) boundary are listed at 50 CFR 660.73(a).

(2) Non-treaty commercial vessels operating in the incidental catch fishery during the sablefish primary fishery north of Pt. Chehalis, Washington, in Area 2A are required to fish outside of a closed area. Under Pacific Coast groundfish regulations at 50 CFR 660.230, fishing with limited entry fixed gear is prohibited within the North Coast Commercial YRCA. It is unlawful to take and retain, possess, or land halibut taken with limited entry fixed gear within the North Coast Commercial YRCA. The North Coast Commercial YRCA is an area off the northern Washington coast, overlapping the northern part of the North Coast Recreational YRCA, and is defined by straight lines connecting latitude and longitude coordinates. Coordinates for the North Coast Commercial YRCA are specified in groundfish regulations at 50 CFR 660.70(b).

(3) Non-treaty commercial vessels operating in the incidental catch fishery during the salmon troll fishery in Area 2A are required to fish outside of a closed area. Under the Pacific Coast groundfish regulations at 50 CFR 660.330(10), fishing with salmon troll gear is prohibited within the Salmon Troll YRCA. It is unlawful for commercial salmon troll vessels to take and retain, possess or land fish within the Salmon Troll YRCA. The Salmon Troll YRCA is an area off the northern Washington coast and is defined by straight lines connecting latitude and longitude coordinates. Coordinates for the Salmon Troll YRCA are specified in groundfish regulations at 50 CFR 660.70(c), and in salmon regulations at 50 CFR 660.405.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996]

§ 300.64 Fishing by U.S. treaty Indian tribes.

(a) Halibut fishing in subarea 2A-1 by members of U.S. treaty Indian tribes located in the State of Washington is governed by this section.

(b) Commercial fishing for halibut by treaty Indians is permitted only in subarea 2A-1 with hook-and-line gear in conformance with the season and quota established annually by the Commission.

(c) Commercial fishing periods and management measures to implement paragraph (b) of this section will be established by treaty Indian tribal regulations.

(d) Commercial fishing for halibut by treaty Indians shall comply with the Commission's management measures governing size limits, careful release of halibut, logs, receipt and possession, and fishing gear (published pursuant to § 300.62), except that the 72-hour fishing restriction preceding the opening of a halibut fishing period shall not apply to treaty Indian fishing.

(e) Ceremonial and subsistence fishing for halibut by treaty Indians in subarea 2A-1 is permitted with hook-and-line gear from January 1 to December 31.

(f) No size or bag limits shall apply to the ceremonial and subsistence fishery, except that when commercial halibut fishing is prohibited pursuant to paragraph (b) of this section, treaty Indians may take and retain not more than two halibut per person per day.

(g) Halibut taken for ceremonial and subsistence purposes shall not be offered for sale or sold.

(h) Any member of a U.S. treaty Indian tribe who is engaged in commercial or ceremonial and subsistence fishing under this section must have on his or her person a valid treaty Indian identification card issued pursuant to 25 CFR part 249, subpart A, and must comply with the treaty Indian vessel and gear identification requirements of Final Decision No. 1 and subsequent orders in United States v. Washington 384 F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash., 1974).

(i) Table 1 to this paragraph (i) sets forth the fishing areas of each of the 13 treaty Indian tribes fishing pursuant to this section. Within subarea 2A-1, boundaries of a tribe's fishing area may be revised as ordered by a Federal court.

Table 1 to Paragraph (i)

Tribe Boundaries
HOH The area between 47°54.30′ N lat. (Quillayute River) and 47°21.00′ N lat. (Quinault River) and east of 125°44.00′ W long.
JAMESTOWN S'KLALLAM Those locations in the Strait of Juan de Fuca and Puget Sound as determined in or in accordance with Final Decision No. 1 and subsequent orders in United States v. Washington, 384 F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash., 1974), and particularly at 626 F. Supp. 1486, to be places at which the Jamestown S'Klallam Tribe may fish under rights secured by treaties with the United States.
LOWER ELWHA S'KLALLAM Those locations in the Strait of Juan de Fuca and Puget Sound as determined in or in accordance with Final Decision No. 1 and subsequent orders in United States v. Washington, 384 F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash., 1974), and particularly at 459 F. Supp. 1049 and 1066 and 626 F. Supp. 1443, to be places at which the Lower Elwha S'Klallam Tribe may fish under rights secured by treaties with the United States.
LUMMI Those locations in the Strait of Juan de Fuca and Puget Sound as determined in or in accordance with Final Decision No. 1 and subsequent orders in United States v. Washington, 384 F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash., 1974), and particularly at 384 F. Supp. 360, as modified in Subproceeding No. 89-08 (W.D. Wash., February 13, 1990) (decision and order re: cross-motions for summary judgement), to be places at which the Lummi Tribe may fish under rights secured by treaties with the United States.
MAKAH The area north of 48°02.25′ N lat. (Norwegian Memorial) and east of 125°44.00′ W long.
NOOKSACK Those locations in the Strait of Juan de Fuca and Puget Sound as determined in or in accordance with Final Decision No. 1 and subsequent orders in United States v. Washington, 384 F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash. 1974), and particularly at 459 F. Supp. 1049, to be places at which the Nooksack Tribe may fish under rights secured by treaties with the United States.
PORT GAMBLE S'KLALLAM Those locations in the Strait of Juan de Fuca and Puget Sound as determined in or in accordance with Final Decision No. 1 and subsequent orders in United States v. Washington, 384 F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash., 1974), and particularly at 626 F. Supp. 1442, to be places at which the Port Gamble S'Klallam Tribe may fish under rights secured by treaties with the United States.
QUILEUTE The area commencing at Cape Alava, located at 48°10′00″ N lat, 124°43′56.9″ W long.; then proceeding west approximately 40 nautical miles at that latitude to a northwestern point located at 48°10′00″ N lat, 125°44′00″ W long.; then proceeding in a southeasterly direction mirroring the coastline at a distance no farther than 40 nautical miles from the mainland Pacific coast shoreline at any line of latitude, to a southwestern point at 47°31′42″ N lat., 125°20′26″ W long.; then proceeding east along that line of latitude to the Pacific coast shoreline at 47°31′42″ N lat., 124°21′9.0″ W long.
QUINAULT The area commencing at the Pacific coast shoreline near Destruction Island, located at 47°40′06″ N lat., 124°23′51.362″ W long.; then proceeding west approximately 30 nautical miles at that latitude to a northwestern point located at 47°40′06″ N lat., 125°08′30″ W long.; then proceeding in a southeasterly direction mirroring the coastline no farther than 30 nautical miles from the mainland Pacific coast shoreline at any line of latitude, to a southwestern point at 46°53′18″ N lat., 124°53′53″ W long.; then proceeding east along that line of latitude to the Pacific coast shoreline at 46°53′18″ N lat., 124°7′36.6″ W long.
SKOKOMISH Those locations in the Strait of Juan de Fuca and Puget Sound as determined in or in accordance with Final Decision No. 1 and subsequent orders in United States v. Washington, 384 F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash., 1974), and particularly at 384 F. Supp. 377, to be places at which the Skokomish Tribe may fish under rights secured by treaties with the United States.
SUQUAMISH Those locations in the Strait of Juan de Fuca and Puget Sound as determined in or in accordance with Final Decision No. 1 and subsequent orders in United States v. Washington, 384 F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash., 1974), and particularly at 459 F. Supp. 1049, to be places at which the Suquamish Tribe may fish under rights secured by treaties with the United States.
SWINOMISH Those locations in the Strait of Juan de Fuca and Puget Sound as determined in or in accordance with Final Decision No. 1 and subsequent orders in United States v. Washington, 384 F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash., 1974), and particularly at 459 F. Supp. 1049, to be places at which the Swinomish Tribe may fish under rights secured by treaties with the United States.
TULALIP Those locations in the Strait of Juan de Fuca and Puget Sound as determined in or in accordance with Final Decision No. 1 and subsequent orders in United States v. Washington, 384 F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash., 1974), and particularly at 626 F. Supp. 1531-1532, to be places at which the Tulalip Tribe may fish under rights secured by treaties with the United States.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 74 FR 11697, Mar. 19, 2009; 76 FR 14319, Mar. 16, 2011; 81 FR 18795, Apr. 1, 2016; 85 FR 25324, May 1, 2020]

§ 300.65 Catch sharing plan and domestic management measures in waters in and off Alaska.

(a) A catch sharing plan (CSP) may be developed by the North Pacific Fishery Management Council and approved by NMFS for portions of the fishery. Any approved CSP may be obtained from the Administrator, Alaska Region, NMFS.

(b) The catch sharing plan for Commission regulatory area 4 allocates the annual commercial catch limit among Areas 4C, 4D, and 4E and will be adopted by the Commission as annual management measures and published in the Federal Register as required in § 300.62.

(c) Catch sharing plan (CSP) for Commission Regulatory Areas 2C and 3A -

(1) General. The catch sharing plan for Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A:

(i) Allocates the annual combined catch limit for Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A in order to establish the annual commercial catch limit and the annual guided sport catch limit for the halibut commercial fishing and sport fishing seasons, pursuant to paragraphs (c)(3) and (4) of this section; and

(ii) Authorizes the use of Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A halibut IFQ as guided angler fish (GAF) for harvest by charter vessel anglers in the corresponding area, pursuant to paragraph (c)(5) of this section.

(iii) Authorizes the use of Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A RFQ resulting from halibut QS held by the RQE as authorized in part 679 to this title to supplement the annual guided sport catch limit in the corresponding area, pursuant to paragraph (c)(4) of this section.

(2) Implementation. The Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A CSP annual combined catch limits, annual commercial catch limits, and annual guided sport catch limits are adopted by the Commission as annual management measures and published by NMFS in the Federal Register as required in § 300.62.

(3) Annual commercial catch limits.

(i) The Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A annual commercial catch limits are determined by subtracting wastage from the allocations in Tables 1 and 2 of this subpart E, adopted by the Commission as annual management measures, and published in the Federal Register as required in § 300.62.

(ii) Commercial fishing in Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A is governed by the Commission's annual management measures and by regulations at 50 CFR part 679, subparts A, B, D, and E.

(4) Annual guided sport catch limits.

(i) The Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A annual guided sport catch limits are determined by subtracting wastage from, and adding any pounds of RFQ held by an RQE for that area to, the allocations in Tables 3 and 4 of this subpart, adopted by the Commission as annual management measures, and published in the Federal Register as required in § 300.62.

(ii) Sport fishing by charter vessel anglers in Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A is governed by the Commission's annual management measures and by regulations at 50 CFR part 300, subparts A and E.

(iii) The amount of QS held by the RQE for Commission regulatory area 2C and 3A as of October 1 each year will be the basis for determining the amount of RFQ pounds that will be added to the annual guided sport catch limit for the corresponding area in the upcoming year.

(5) Guided Angler Fish (GAF). This paragraph (§ 300.65(c)(5)) governs the transfer of Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A halibut between individual fishing quota (IFQ) and guided angler fish (GAF), the issuance of GAF permits, and GAF use.

(i) General.

(A) GAF is derived from halibut IFQ that is transferred from a Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A IFQ permit holder's account held by a person who also holds quota share (QS), as defined in § 679.2 of this title, to a GAF permit holder's account for the same regulatory area.

(B) A GAF permit authorizes a charter vessel angler to retain GAF that are caught in the Commission regulatory area specified on a GAF permit:

(1) During the sport halibut fishing season adopted by the Commission as annual management measures and published in the Federal Register as required in § 300.62, and

(2) Subject to the GAF use restrictions at paragraphs (c)(5)(iv)(A) through (K) of this section.

(C) NMFS will return unharvested GAF to the IFQ permit holder's account from which the GAF were derived on or after fifteen calendar days prior to the closing of the commercial halibut fishing season each year, subject to paragraph (c)(5)(ii) of this section and underage provisions at § 679.40(e) of this title.

(ii) Transfer Between IFQ and GAF -

(A) General. A transfer between IFQ and GAF means any transaction in which halibut IFQ passes between an IFQ permit holder and a GAF permit holder as:

(1) A transfer of IFQ to GAF, in which halibut IFQ equivalent pounds, as defined in § 679.2 of this title, are transferred from a Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A IFQ permit account, converted to number(s) of GAF as specified in paragraph (c)(5)(ii)(E) of this section, and assigned to a GAF permit holder's account in the same management area;

(2) A transfer of GAF to IFQ, in which GAF in number(s) of fish are transferred from a GAF permit holder's account in Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A, converted to IFQ equivalent pounds as specified in paragraph (c)(5)(ii)(E) of this section, and assigned to the same IFQ permit holder's account from which the GAF were derived; or

(3) The return of unharvested GAF by NMFS to the IFQ permit holder's account from which it was derived, on or after 15 calendar days prior to the closing of the commercial halibut fishing season.

(B) Transfer procedure -

(1) Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF. A transfer between IFQ and GAF requires Regional Administrator review and approval of a complete Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF. Both the transferor and the transferee are required to complete and sign the application. Transfers will be conducted via methods approved by NMFS. The Regional Administrator shall provide an Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF on the NMFS Alaska Region Web site at http://alaskafisheries.noaa.gov/ram/default.htm. An Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF is not required for the return of unharvested GAF by NMFS to the IFQ permit holder's account from which it was derived, 15 calendar days prior to the closing of the commercial halibut fishing season for that year.

(2) Application timing. The Regional Administrator will not approve any Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF before annual IFQ is issued for each year or after one month prior to the closing of the commercial fishing season for that year. Applications to transfer GAF to IFQ will be accepted from August 1 through August 31 only.

(3) Transfer due to court order, operation of law, or as part of a security agreement. NMFS may approve an Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF to return GAF to the IFQ permit holder's account from which it derived pursuant to a court order, operation of law, or a security agreement.

(4) Notification of decision on application.

(i) Persons who submit an Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF to the Regional Administrator will receive notification of the Regional Administrator's decision to approve or disapprove the application for transfer.

(ii) If an Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF is disapproved, NMFS will provide the reason(s) in writing by mail, posted on the date of that decision.

(iii) Disapproval of an Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF may be appealed pursuant to § 679.43 of this title.

(iv) The Regional Administrator will not approve a transfer between IFQ and GAF on an interim basis if an applicant appeals a disapproval of an Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF pursuant to § 679.43 of this title.

(5) IFQ and GAF accounts.

(i) Accounts affected by either a Regional Administrator-approved Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF or the return of unharvested GAF to IFQ on or after 15 calendar days prior to the closing of the commercial halibut fishing season for that year will be adjusted on the date of approval or return. Applications for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF that are transfers of GAF to IFQ that have been approved by the Regional Administrator will be completed not earlier than September 1. Any necessary permits will be sent with the notification of the Regional Administrator's decision on the Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF.

(ii) Upon approval of an Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF for an initial transfer from IFQ to GAF, NMFS will establish a new GAF account for the GAF applicant's account and issue the resulting new GAF and IFQ permits. If a GAF account already exists from a previous transfer from the same IFQ account in the corresponding management area in that year, NMFS will modify the GAF recipient's GAF account and the IFQ transferor's permit account and issue modified GAF and IFQ permits upon approval of an Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF.

(iii) On or after 15 calendar days prior to the closing of the commercial halibut fishing season, NMFS will convert unharvested GAF from a GAF permit holder's account back into IFQ equivalent pounds as specified in paragraph (c)(5)(ii)(E)(2) of this section, and return the resulting IFQ equivalent pounds to the IFQ permit holder's account from which the GAF were derived, unless prevented by regulations at 15 CFR part 904.

(C) Complete application. Applicants must submit a completed Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF to the Regional Administrator as instructed on the application. NMFS will notify applicants with incomplete applications of the specific information necessary to complete the application.

(D) Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF approval criteria. An Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF will not be approved until the Regional Administrator has determined that:

(1) The person applying to transfer IFQ to GAF or receive IFQ from a transfer of GAF to IFQ:

(i) Possesses at least one unit of halibut quota share (QS), as defined in § 679.2 of this title, in the applicable Commission regulatory area, either Area 2C or Area 3A, for which the transfer of IFQ to GAF is requested;

(ii) Has been issued an annual IFQ Permit, as defined in § 679.4(d)(1) of this title, for the Commission regulatory area corresponding to the person's QS holding, either Area 2C or Area 3A, resulting from that halibut QS; and

(iii) Has an IFQ permit holder's account with an IFQ amount equal to or greater than amount of IFQ to be transferred in the Commission regulatory area, either Area 2C or Area 3A, for which the transfer of IFQ to GAF is requested.

(iv) In the applicable Commission regulatory area, either Area 2C or Area 3A, the sum of IFQ halibut equivalent pounds, as defined in § 679.2 of this title, from the transfer of IFQ to GAF and the pounds of RFQ issued to the RQE during a calendar year does not exceed an amount that is greater than the amount derived from: 5,947,740 units of Area 2C QS, or 22,187,161 units of Area 3A QS.

(2) The person applying to receive or transfer GAF possesses a valid charter halibut permit, community charter halibut permit, or military charter halibut permit in the Commission regulatory area (Area 2C or Area 3A) that corresponds to the IFQ permit area from or to which the IFQ will be transferred.

(3) For a transfer of IFQ to GAF:

(i) The transfer between IFQ and GAF must not cause the GAF permit issued to exceed the GAF use limits in paragraphs (c)(5)(iv)(H)(1) and (2) of this section;

(ii) The transfer must not cause the person applying to transfer IFQ to exceed the GAF use limit in paragraph (c)(5)(iv)(H)(3) of this section; and

(iii) There must be no fines, civil penalties, sanctions, or other payments due and owing, or outstanding permit sanctions, resulting from Federal fishery violations involving either person or permit.

(4) If a Community Quota Entity (CQE), as defined in § 679.2 of this title, submits a “Community Quota Entity Application for Transfer Between Individual Fishing Quota (IFQ) and Guided Angler Fish (GAF),” the application will not be approved until the Regional Administrator has determined that:

(i) The CQE applying to transfer IFQ to GAF is eligible to hold IFQ on behalf of the eligible community in Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A designated in Table 21 to 50 CFR part 679;

(ii) The CQE applying to transfer IFQ to GAF has received notification of approval of eligibility to receive IFQ for that community as described in § 679.41(d)(1) of this title;

(iii) The CQE applying to receive GAF from a Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A IFQ permit holder holds one or more charter halibut permits or community charter halibut permits for the corresponding area; and

(iv) The CQE applying to transfer between IFQ and GAF has submitted a complete annual report(s) as required by § 679.5(t) of this title.

(E) Conversion between IFQ and GAF -

(1) General. An annual conversion factor will be calculated to convert between net pounds (whole number, no decimal points) of halibut IFQ and number(s) of GAF (whole number, no decimal points) for Area 2C and Area 3A. This conversion factor will be posted on the NMFS Alaska Region Web site before the beginning of each commercial halibut fishing season.

(2) Conversion calculation. The net pounds of IFQ transferred to or from an IFQ permit holder in Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A will be equal to the number(s) of GAF transferred to or from the GAF account of a GAF permit holder in the corresponding area, multiplied by the estimated average net weight determined as follows. For the first calendar year after the effective date of this rule, the average net weight will be estimated for all halibut harvested by charter vessel anglers during the most recent year without a size limit in effect. After the first calendar year after the effective date of this rule, the average net weight will be estimated from the average length of GAF retained in that area during the previous year as reported to RAM via the GAF electronic reporting system. If no GAF were harvested in a year, the conversion factor will be calculated using the same method as for the first calendar year after the effective date of this rule. NMFS will round up to the nearest whole number (no decimals) when transferring IFQ to GAF and when transferring GAF to IFQ. Expressed algebraically, the conversion formula is:

IFQ net pounds = (number of GAF × average net weight).

(3) The total number of net pounds converted from unharvested GAF and transferred to the IFQ permit holder's account from which it derived cannot exceed the total number of net pounds NMFS transferred from the IFQ permit holder's account to the GAF permit holder's account for that area in the current year.

(iii) Guided Angler Fish (GAF) permit -

(A) General.

(1) A GAF permit authorizes a charter vessel angler to catch and retain GAF in the specified Commission regulatory area, subject to the limits in paragraphs (c)(5)(iv)(A) through (K) of this section, during a charter vessel fishing trip authorized by the charter halibut permit, community charter halibut permit, or military charter halibut permit that is designated on the GAF permit.

(2) A GAF permit authorizes a charter vessel angler to catch and retain GAF in the specified Commission regulatory area from the time of permit issuance until any of the following occurs:

(i) The amount of GAF in the GAF permit holder's account is zero;

(ii) The permit expires at 11:59 p.m. (Alaska local time) on the day prior to 15 days prior to the end of the commercial halibut fishing season for that year;

(iii) NMFS replaces the GAF permit with a modified GAF permit following NMFS approval of an Application for Transfer Between IFQ and GAF; or

(iv) The GAF permit is revoked or suspended under 15 CFR part 904.

(3) A GAF permit is issued for use in a Commission regulatory area (2C or 3A) to the person who holds a valid charter halibut permit, community charter halibut permit, or military charter halibut permit in the corresponding Commission regulatory area. Regulations governing issuance, transfer, and use of charter halibut permits are located in § 300.67.

(4) A GAF permit is assigned to only one charter halibut permit, community charter halibut permit, or military charter halibut permit held by the GAF permit holder in the corresponding Commission regulatory area (2C or 3A).

(5) If a charter vessel angler harvests GAF from a charter vessel with a charter vessel guide on board, a legible copy of a valid GAF permit and the assigned charter halibut permit, community charter halibut permit, or military charter halibut permit appropriate for the Commission regulatory area (2C or 3A) must be carried by the charter vessel operator on board the charter vessel used to harvest GAF at all times that such fish are retained on board and must be presented for inspection on request of any authorized officer. If a charter vessel angler harvests GAF from a charter vessel without a charter vessel guide on board, the charter vessel guide must retain the legible copy of the GAF permit and the assigned charter halibut permit, community charter halibut permit, or military charter halibut permit must be on the charter vessel with the charter vessel angler.

(6) No person may alter, erase, mutilate, or forge a GAF permit or document issued under this section (§ 300.65(c)(5)(iii)). Any such permit or document that has been intentionally altered, erased, mutilated, or forged is invalid.

(7) GAF permit holders must retain GAF permit(s) and associated GAF permit logs for two years after the end of the fishing year for which the GAF permit(s) was issued and make the GAF permit available for inspection upon the request of an authorized officer (as defined in Commission regulations).

(B) Issuance. The Regional Administrator will issue a GAF permit upon approval of an Application to Transfer Between IFQ and GAF.

(C) Transfer. GAF authorized by a GAF permit under this paragraph (§ 300.65(c)(5)(iii)) are not transferable to another GAF permit, except as provided under paragraph (c)(5)(ii) of this section.

(iv) GAF use restrictions.

(A) If a charter vessel angler harvests GAF from a charter vessel with a charter vessel guide on board, the charter vessel guide must have on board a legible copy of a valid GAF permit and the valid charter halibut permit, community charter halibut permit, or military charter halibut permit assigned to the GAF permit for the area of harvest. If a charter vessel angler harvests GAF from a charter vessel without a charter vessel guide on board, the legible copy of the valid GAF permit must be on board the same vessel as the charter vessel guide, and the original charter halibut permit, community charter halibut permit, or military charter halibut permit assigned to the GAF permit for the area of harvest must be on the charter vessel with the charter vessel angler.

(B) The total number of GAF on board a vessel cannot exceed the number of unharvested GAF in the GAF permit holder's GAF account at the time of harvest.

(C) The total number of halibut retained by a charter vessel angler harvesting GAF cannot exceed the sport fishing daily bag limit in effect for unguided sport anglers at the time of harvest adopted by the Commission as annual management measures and published in the Federal Register as required in § 300.62.

(D) Retained GAF are not subject to any length limit implemented by the Commission's annual management measures and published in the Federal Register as required in § 300.62, if applicable.

(E) Each charter vessel angler retaining GAF must comply with the halibut possession requirements adopted by the Commission as annual management measures and published in the Federal Register as required in § 300.62.

(F) The charter vessel guide must ensure that each charter vessel angler complies with paragraphs (c)(5)(iv)(A) through (E) of this section.

(G) The charter vessel guide must be physically present when the GAF halibut is harvested and must immediately remove the tips of the upper and lower lobes of the caudal (tail) fin to mark all halibut caught and retained as GAF. If the GAF halibut is filleted, the entire carcass, with head and tail connected as a single piece, must be retained on board the charter vessel on which the halibut was caught until all fillets are offloaded.

(H) Except as provided in paragraph (c)(5)(iv)(I) of this section, during the halibut sport fishing season adopted by the Commission as annual management measures and published in the Federal Register as required in § 300.62, the following GAF use and IFQ transfer limits shall apply. GAF use limits do not apply to military charter halibut permits.

(1) No more than 400 GAF may be assigned to a GAF permit that is assigned to a charter halibut permit or community charter halibut permit endorsed for six (6) or fewer charter vessel anglers in a year,

(2) No more than 600 GAF may be assigned to a GAF permit that is assigned to a charter halibut permit endorsed for more than six (6) charter vessel anglers in a year; and

(3) In Commission regulatory area 2C, a maximum of 1,500 pounds or ten (10) percent, whichever is greater, of the start year fishable IFQ pounds for an IFQ permit, may be transferred from IFQ to GAF. In Commission regulatory area 3A, a maximum of 1,500 pounds or fifteen (15) percent, whichever is greater, of the start year fishable IFQ pounds for an IFQ permit, may be transferred from IFQ to GAF. Start year fishable pounds is the sum of IFQ equivalent pounds, as defined in § 679.2 of this title, for an area, derived from QS held, plus or minus adjustments made to that amount pursuant to § 679.40(d) and (e) of this title.

(I) The halibut QS equivalent of net pounds of halibut IFQ that is transferred to GAF is included in the computation of halibut QS use caps in § 679.42(f)(1)(i) and (ii) of this title.

(J) A CHP holder receiving GAF from a CQE is subject to § 679.42(f)(6) of this title. For a CHP holder who receives GAF from a CQE, the net poundage equivalent of all halibut IFQ received as GAF is included in the computation of that person's IFQ halibut holdings in § 679.42(f)(6) of this title.

(K) Applicability of GAF use restrictions to CQEs. The GAF use restrictions in paragraph (c)(5)(iv)(H) of this section do not apply if:

(1) A CQE transfers IFQ as GAF to a GAF permit that is assigned to one or more charter halibut permits held by that CQE or community charter halibut permits held by that CQE;

(2) A CQE transfers IFQ as GAF to another CQE holding one or more charter halibut permits or community charter halibut permits; or

(3) A CQE transfers IFQ as GAF to a GAF permit that is assigned to a charter halibut permit held by an eligible community resident (as defined at § 679.2) of that CQE community, as defined for purposes of the Catch Sharing Plan for Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A in § 679.2 of this title, holding one or more charter halibut permits.

(d) Charter vessels in Commission regulatory area 2C and 3A -

(1) General requirements -

(i) Logbook submission. For a charter vessel fishing trip during which halibut were caught and retained on or after the first Monday in April and on or before December 31, Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) Saltwater Sport Fishing Charter Trip Logbook data sheets must be submitted to the ADF&G and postmarked or received no later than 14 calendar days after the Monday of the fishing week (as defined in 50 CFR 300.61) in which the halibut were caught and retained. Logbook sheets for a charter vessel fishing trip during which halibut were caught and retained on January 1 through the first Sunday in April, must be submitted to the ADF&G and postmarked or received no later than the second Monday in April.

(ii) The charter vessel guide is responsible for complying with the reporting requirements of this paragraph (d). The person whose business was assigned an Alaska Department of Fish and Game Saltwater Sport Fishing Charter Trip Logbook is responsible for ensuring that the charter vessel guide complies with the reporting requirements of this paragraph (d).

(2) Retention and inspection of logbook. A person who is required to provide information pursuant to paragraph (d)(4) of this section, or whose business was assigned an Alaska Department of Fish and Game Saltwater Sport Fishing Charter Trip Logbook and whose charter vessel anglers retain halibut is required to:

(i) Retain all logbook data pages showing halibut harvest for 2 years after the end of the fishing year for which the logbook was issued, and

(ii) Make the logbook available for inspection upon the request of an authorized officer (as defined in Commission regulations).

(3) Charter vessel guide and crew restriction in Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A. A charter vessel guide, charter vessel operator, or crew member may not catch and retain halibut during a charter vessel fishing trip in Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A, except that charter vessel operators who are charter vessel anglers may catch and retain halibut during a charter vessel fishing trip if the charter vessel guide is on a separate charter vessel.

(4) Recordkeeping and reporting requirements in Commission regulatory area 2C and 3A -

(i) General requirements. Each charter vessel angler and charter vessel guide in Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A must comply with the following recordkeeping and reporting requirements, except as specified in paragraph (d)(4)(iii)(C) of this section, by the end of the calendar day or by the end of the charter vessel fishing trip, whichever comes first, unless otherwise specified.

(ii) Logbook reporting requirements -

(A) Charter vessel angler signature requirement. Each charter vessel angler who retains halibut caught in Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A must acknowledge that his or her name, license number (if required), and number of halibut retained (kept) are recorded correctly by signing the Alaska Department of Fish and Game Saltwater Charter Logbook data sheet on the line that corresponds to the angler's information.

(B) Charter vessel guide requirements. If halibut were caught and retained in Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A, the charter vessel guide must record the following information (see paragraphs (d)(4)(ii)(B)(1) through (10) of this section) in the Alaska Department of Fish and Game Saltwater Charter Logbook:

(1) Guide license number. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game sport fishing guide license or registration number held by the charter vessel guide who certified the logbook data sheet.

(2) Date. Month and day for each charter vessel fishing trip taken. A separate logbook data sheet is required for each charter vessel fishing trip if two or more trips are taken on the same day. A separate logbook data sheet is required for each calendar day that halibut are caught and retained during a multi-day trip. A separate logbook sheet is required if more than one charter halibut permit is used on a trip.

(3) Charter halibut permit (CHP) number. The NMFS CHP number(s) authorizing charter vessel anglers on that charter vessel fishing trip to catch and retain halibut.

(4) Guided Angler Fish (GAF) permit number. The NMFS GAF permit number(s) authorizing charter vessel anglers on that charter vessel fishing trip to harvest GAF.

(5) Statistical area. The primary Alaska Department of Fish and Game statistical area code in which halibut were caught and retained.

(6) Angler sport fishing license number and printed name. Before a charter vessel fishing trip begins, record the first and last name of each paying or non-paying charter vessel angler on board that will fish for halibut. For each angler required to be licensed, record the Alaska Sport Fishing License number for the current year, resident permanent license number, or disabled veteran license number. For youth anglers not required to be licensed, record the word “youth” in place of the license number.

(7) Number of halibut retained. For each charter vessel angler, record the total number of non-GAF halibut caught and kept.

(8) Number of GAF retained. For each charter vessel angler, record the total number of GAF kept.

(9) Guide signature. The charter vessel guide acknowledges that the recorded information is correct by signing the logbook data sheet.

(10) Angler signature. The charter vessel guide is responsible for ensuring that charter vessel anglers that retain halibut comply with the signature requirements at paragraph (d)(4)(ii)(A) of this section.

(iii) GAF reporting requirements -

(A) General.

(1) Upon retention of a GAF halibut, the charter vessel guide must immediately record on the GAF permit log (on the back of the GAF permit) the date that the fish was caught and retained and the total length of that fish as described in paragraphs (d)(4)(iii)(D)(5) and (7) of this section. If GAF halibut are retained on a charter vessel without a charter vessel guide on board, the charter vessel guide must also comply with the reporting requirements in paragraph (d)(4)(iii)(A)(5) of this section.

(2) In addition to the recordkeeping and reporting requirements in paragraphs (d)(4)(i) and (ii) of this section, a GAF permit holder must use the NMFS-approved electronic reporting system on the Alaska Region Web site at http://alaskafisheries.noaa.gov/ to submit a GAF landings report.

(3) A GAF permit holder must submit a GAF landings report by 11:59 p.m. (Alaska local time) on the last calendar day of a fishing trip for each day on which a charter vessel angler retained GAF authorized by the GAF permit held by that permit holder.

(4) If a GAF permit holder is unable to submit a GAF landings report due to hardware, software, or Internet failure for a period longer than the required reporting time, or a correction must be made to information already submitted, the GAF permit holder must contact NOAA Office of Law Enforcement, Juneau, AK, at 800-304-4846 (Select Option 1).

(5) If a GAF is retained on a charter vessel without a charter vessel guide on board, the charter vessel guide must immediately record in the ADF&G Saltwater Charter Logbook the GAF permit number under which GAF were caught and retained, and the number of GAF kept under the corresponding charter vessel angler's name.

(B) Electronic Reporting of GAF. A GAF permit holder must obtain, at his or her own expense, the technology to submit GAF landing reports to the NMFS-approved reporting system for GAF landings.

(C) NMFS-Approved Electronic Reporting System. The GAF permit holder agrees to the following terms (see paragraphs (d)(4)(iii)(C)(1) through (3) of this section):

(1) To use any NMFS online service or reporting system only for authorized purposes;

(2) To safeguard the NMFS Person Identification Number and password to prevent their use by unauthorized persons; and

(3) To accept the responsibility of and acknowledge compliance with § 300.4(a) and (b), § 300.65(d), and § 300.66(p) and (q).

(D) Information entered for each GAF caught and retained. The GAF permit holder must enter the following information for each charter vessel fishing trip in which GAF were retained under the authorization of the permit holder's GAF permit into the NMFS-approved electronic reporting system (see paragraphs (d)(4)(iii)(D)(1) through (9) of this section) by 11:59 p.m. (Alaska local time) on the last day of a charter fishing trip in which a charter vessel angler retained GAF:

(1) Logbook number from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game Saltwater Sport Fishing Charter Trip Logbook.

(2) Vessel identification number for vessel on which GAF were caught and retained:

(i) State of Alaska issued boat registration (AK number), or

(ii) U.S. Coast Guard documentation number.

(3) GAF permit number under which GAF were caught and retained.

(4) Alaska Department of Fish and Game sport fishing guide license or registration number held by the charter vessel guide who certified the logbook data sheet.

(5) Date that GAF was caught and retained.

(6) Number of GAF caught and retained.

(7) Length of each GAF caught and retained. Halibut lengths are measured in inches in a straight line from the anterior-most tip of the lower jaw with the mouth closed to the extreme end of the middle of the tail.

(8) Community charter halibut permit only: Community or Port where the charter vessel fishing trip began (i.e., where charter vessel anglers boarded the vessel).

(9) Community charter halibut permit only: Community or Port where the charter vessel fishing trip ended (i.e., where charter vessel anglers or fish were offloaded from the vessel).

(E) Properly reported landing.

(1) The GAF permit holder is responsible for ensuring that all GAF harvested on board a vessel are debited from the GAF permit holder's account under which the GAF were retained.

(2) A GAF landing confirmation number issued by the NMFS-approved electronic reporting system and recorded by the GAF permit holder on the GAF permit log used to record the dates and lengths of retained GAF, as required in paragraph (d)(4)(iii)(A)(1) of this section, constitutes confirmation that the GAF permit holder's GAF landing is properly reported and the GAF permit holder's account is properly debited.

(3) Instructions for correcting a submitted GAF landing electronic report are at (d)(4)(iii)(A)(4) of this section.

(5) Carcass retention requirement for size-restricted halibut. If a size-restricted halibut is filleted on board the charter vessel, the entire carcass, with head and tail connected as a single piece, must be retained on board the charter vessel on which it was caught until all fillets are offloaded.

(6) If a charter vessel angler catches and retains halibut, and that halibut is on board a fishing vessel with halibut caught and retained by persons who are not charter vessel anglers, then the daily bag limit, possession limit, size limit, and carcass retention regulations applicable to charter vessel anglers shall apply to all halibut on board the fishing vessel.

(e) The Local Area Management Plan (LAMP) for Sitka Sound provides guidelines for participation in the halibut fishery in Sitka Sound.

(1) For purposes of this section, Sitka Sound means (See Figure 1 to subpart E):

(i) With respect to paragraph (e)(2) of this section, that part of the Commission regulatory area 2C that is enclosed on the north and east:

(A) By a line from Kruzof Island at 57°20′30″ N. lat., 135°45′10″ W. long. to Chichagof Island at 57°22′03″ N. lat., 135°43′00″ W. long., and

(B) By a line from Chichagof Island at 57°22′35″ N. lat., 135°41′18″ W. long. to Baranof Island at 57°22′17″ N. lat., 135°40′57″ W. long.; and

(C) That is enclosed on the south and west by a line from Cape Edgecumbe at 56°59′54″ N. lat., 135°51′27″ W. long. to Vasilief Rock at 56°48′56″ N. lat., 135°32′30″ W. long., and

(D) To the green day marker in Dorothy Narrows at 56°49′17″ N. lat., 135°22′45″ W. long. to Baranof Island at 56°49′17″ N. lat., 135°22′36″ W. long.

(ii) With respect to paragraphs (e)(3), (e)(4), and (e)(5) of this section, that part of the Commission Regulatory Area 2C that is enclosed on the north and east:

(A) By a line from Kruzof Island at 57°20′30″ N. lat., 135°45′10″ W. long. to Chichagof Island at 57°22′03″ N. lat., 135°43′00″ W. long., and

(B) A line from Chichagof Island at 57°22′35″ N. lat., 135°41′18″ W. long. to Baranof Island at 57°22′17″ N. lat., 135°40′57″ W. lat.; and

(C) That is enclosed on the south and west by a line from Sitka Point at 56°59′23″ N. lat., 135°49′34″ W. long., to Hanus Point at 56°51′55″ N. lat., 135°30′30″ W. long.,

(D) To the green day marker in Dorothy Narrows at 56°49′17″ N. lat., 135°22′45″ W. long. to Baranof Island at 56°49′17″ N. lat., 135°22′36″ W. long.

(2) A person using a vessel greater than 35 ft (10.7 m) in overall length, as defined at 50 CFR 300.61, is prohibited from fishing for IFQ halibut with setline gear, as defined at 50 CFR 300.61, within Sitka Sound as defined in paragraph (e)(1)(i) of this section.

(3) A person using a vessel less than or equal to 35 ft (10.7 m) in overall length, as defined at 50 CFR 300.61:

(i) Is prohibited from fishing for IFQ halibut with setline gear within Sitka Sound, as defined in paragraph (e)(1)(ii) of this section, from June 1 through August 31; and

(ii) Is prohibited, during the remainder of the designated IFQ season, from retaining more than 2,000 lb (0.91 mt) of IFQ halibut within Sitka Sound, as defined in paragraph (e)(1)(ii) of this section, per IFQ fishing trip, as defined in 50 CFR 300.61.

(4) No charter vessel shall engage in sport fishing, as defined at § 300.61, for halibut within Sitka Sound, as defined in paragraph (e)(1)(ii) of this section, from June 1 through August 31.

(i) No charter vessel shall retain halibut caught while engaged in sport fishing, as defined at § 300.61, for other species, within Sitka Sound, as defined in paragraph (e)(1)(ii) of this section, from June 1 through August 31.

(ii) Notwithstanding paragraphs (e)(4) and (e)(4)(i) of this section, halibut harvested outside Sitka Sound, as defined in paragraph (e)(1)(ii) of this section, may be retained onboard a charter vessel engaged in sport fishing, as defined in § 300.61, for other species within Sitka Sound, as defined in paragraph (e)(1)(ii) of this section, from June 1 through August 31.

(5) Setline gear may not be used in a 4 nm radius extending south from Low Island at 57°00.70′ N. lat., 135°36.57′ W. long. within Sitka Sound, as defined in paragraph (e)(1)(ii) of this section, from June 1 through August 31.

(f) Sitka Pinnacles Marine Reserve.

(1) For purposes of this paragraph (f), the Sitka Pinnacles Marine Reserve means an area totaling 2.5 square nm off Cape Edgecumbe, defined by straight lines connecting the following points in a counterclockwise manner:

56°55.5′ N lat., 135°54.0′ W long;

56°57.0′ N lat., 135°54.0′ W long;

56°57.0′ N lat., 135°57.0′ W long;

56°55.5′ N lat., 135°57.0′ W long.

(2) No person shall engage in commercial, sport or subsistence fishing, as defined at § 300.61, for halibut within the Sitka Pinnacles Marine Reserve.

(3) No person shall anchor a vessel within the Sitka Pinnacles Marine Reserve if halibut is on board.

(g) Subsistence fishing in and off Alaska. No person shall engage in subsistence fishing for halibut unless that person meets the requirements in paragraphs (g)(1), (g)(2), or (g)(3) of this section.

(1) A person is eligible to harvest subsistence halibut if he or she is a rural resident of a community with customary and traditional uses of halibut listed in the following table:

Halibut Regulatory Area 2C

Rural Community Organized Entity
Angoon Municipality
Coffman Cove Municipality
Craig Municipality
Edna Bay Census Designated Place
Elfin Cove Census Designated Place
Gustavus Census Designated Place
Haines Municipality
Hollis Census Designated Place
Hoonah Municipality
Hydaburg Municipality
Hyder Census Designated Place
Kake Municipality
Kasaan Municipality
Klawock Municipality
Klukwan Census Designated Place
Metlakatla Census Designated Place
Meyers Chuck Census Designated Place
Naukati Municipality
Pelican Municipality
Petersburg Municipality
Point Baker Census Designated Place
Port Alexander Municipality
Port Protection Census Designated Place
Saxman Municipality
Sitka Municipality
Skagway Municipality
Tenakee Springs Municipality
Thorne Bay Municipality
Whale Pass Census Designated Place
Wrangell Municipality

Halibut Regulatory Area 3A

Rural Community Organized Entity
Akhiok Municipality
Chenega Bay Census Designated Place
Cordova Municipality
Karluk Census Designated Place
Kodiak City Municipality
Larsen Bay Municipality
Nanwalek Census Designated Place
Old Harbor Municipality
Ouzinkie Municipality
Port Graham Census Designated Place
Port Lions Municipality
Seldovia Municipality
Tatitlek Census Designated Place
Yakutat Municipality

Halibut Regulatory Area 3B

Rural Community Organized Entity
Chignik Bay Municipality
Chignik Lagoon Census Designated Place
Chignik Lake Census Designated Place
Cold Bay Municipality
False Pass Municipality
Ivanof Bay Census Designated Place
King Cove Municipality
Nelson Lagoon Census Designated Place
Perryville Census Designated Place
Sand Point Municipality

Halibut Regulatory Area 4A

Rural Community Organized Entity
Akutan Municipality
Nikolski Census Designated Place
Unalaska Municipality

Halibut Regulatory Area 4B

Rural Community Organized Entity
Adak Census Designated Place
Atka Municipality

Halibut Regulatory Area 4C

Rural Community Organized Entity
St. George Municipality
St. Paul Municipality

Halibut Regulatory Area 4D

Rural Community Organized Entity
Gambell Municipality
Savoonga Municipality
Diomede (Inalik) Municipality

Halibut Regulatory Area 4E

Rural Community Organized Entity
Alakanuk Municipality
Aleknegik Municipality
Bethel Municipality
Brevig Mission Municipality
Chefornak Municipality
Chevak Municipality
Clark's Point Municipality
Council Census Designated Place
Dillingham Municipality
Eek Municipality
Egegik Municipality
Elim Municipality
Emmonak Municipality
Golovin Municipality
Goodnews Bay Municipality
Hooper Bay Municipality
King Salmon Census Designated Place
Kipnuk Census Designated Place
Kongiganak Census Designated Place
Kotlik Municipality
Koyuk Municipality
Kwigillingok Census Designated Place
Levelock Census Designated Place
Manokotak Municipality
Mekoryak Municipality
Naknek Census Designated Place
Napakiak Municipality
Napaskiak Municipality
Newtok Census Designated Place
Nightmute Municipality
Nome Municipality
Oscarville Census Designated Place
Pilot Point Municipality
Platinum Municipality
Port Heiden Municipality
Quinhagak Municipality
Scammon Bay Municipality
Shaktoolik Municipality
Sheldon Point (Nunam Iqua) Municipality
Shishmaref Municipality
Solomon Census Designated Place
South Naknek Census Designated Place
St. Michael Municipality
Stebbins Municipality
Teller Municipality
Togiak Municipality
Toksook Bay Municipality
Tuntutuliak Census Designated Place
Tununak Census Designated Place
Twin Hills Census Designated Place
Ugashik Census Designated Place
Unalakleet Municipality
Wales Municipality
White Mountain Municipality

(2) A person is eligible to harvest subsistence halibut if he or she is a member of an Alaska Native tribe with customary and traditional uses of halibut listed in the following table:

Halibut Regulatory Area 2C

Place with Tribal Headquarters Organized Tribal Entity
Angoon Angoon Community Association
Craig Craig Community Association
Haines Chilkoot Indian Association
Hoonah Hoonah Indian Association
Hydaburg Hydaburg Cooperative Association
Juneau Aukquan Traditional Council
Central Council Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes
Douglas Indian Association
Kake Organized Village of Kake
Kasaan Organized Village of Kasaan
Ketchikan Ketchikan Indian Corporation
Klawock Klawock Cooperative Association
Klukwan Chilkat Indian Village
Metlakatla Metlakatla Indian Community, Annette Island Reserve
Petersburg Petersburg Indian Association
Saxman Organized Village of Saxman
Sitka Sitka Tribe of Alaska
Skagway Skagway Village
Wrangell Wrangell Cooperative Association

Halibut Regulatory Area 3A

Place with Tribal Headquarters Organized Tribal Entity
Akhiok Native Village of Akhiok
Chenega Bay Native Village of Chanega
Cordova Native Village of Eyak
Karluk Native Village of Karluk
Kenai-Soldotna Kenaitze Indian Tribe
Village of Salamatoff
Kodiak City Lesnoi Village (Woody Island)
Native Village of Afognak
Shoonaq' Tribe of Kodiak
Larsen Bay Native Village of Larsen Bay
Nanwalek Native Village of Nanwalek
Ninilchik Ninilchik Village
Old Harbor Village of Old Harbor
Ouzinkie Native Village of Ouzinkie
Port Graham Native Village of Port Graham
Port Lions Native Village of Port Lions
Seldovia Seldovia Village Tribe
Tatitlek Native Village of Tatitlek
Wasilla Village of Kanatak
Yakutat Yakutat Tlingit Tribe

Halibut Regulatory Area 3B

Place with Tribal Headquarters Organized Tribal Entity
Chignik Bay Native Village of Chignik
Chignik Lagoon Native Village of Chignik Lagoon
Chignik Lake Chignik Lake Village
False Pass Native Village of False Pass
Ivanof Bay Ivanoff Bay Village
King Cove Agdaagux Tribe of King Cove
Native Village of Belkofski
Nelson Lagoon Native Village of Nelson Lagoon
Perryville Native Village of Perryville
Sand Point Pauloff Harbor Village
Native Village of Unga
Qagan Tayagungin Tribe of Sand Point Village

Halibut Regulatory Area 4A

Place with Tribal Headquarters Organized Tribal Entity
Akutan Native Village of Akutan
Nikolski Native Village of Nikolski
Unalaska Qawalingin Tribe of Unalaska

Halibut Regulatory Area 4B

Place with Tribal Headquarters Organized Tribal Entity
Atka Native Village of Atka

Halibut Regulatory Area 4C

Place with Tribal Headquarters Organized Tribal Entity
St. George
St. Paul
Pribilof Islands Aleut Communities of St. Paul Island and St. George Island

Halibut Regulatory Area 4D

Place with Tribal Headquarters Organized Tribal Entity
Gambell Native Village of Gambell
Savoonga Native Village of Savoonga
Diomede (Inalik) Native Village of Diomede (Inalik)

Halibut Regulatory Area 4E

Place with Tribal Headquarters Organized Tribal Entity
Alakanuk Village of Alakanuk
Aleknagik Native Village of Aleknagik
Bethel Orutsararmuit Native Village
Brevig Mission Native Village of Brevig Mission
Chefornak Village of Chefornak
Chevak Chevak Native Village
Clark's Point Village of Clark's Point
Council Native Village of Council
Dillingham Native Village of Dillingham
Native Village of Ekuk
Native Village of Kanakanak
Eek Native Village of Eek
Egegik Egegik Village
Elim Native Village of Elim
Emmonak Chuloonawick Native Village
Emmonak Village
Golovin Chinik Eskimo Community
Goodnews Bay Native Village of Goodnews Bay
Hooper Bay Native Village of Hooper Bay
Native Village of Paimiut
King Salmon King Salmon Tribal Council
Kipnuk Native Village of Kipnuk
Kongiganak Native Village of Kongiganak
Kotlik Native Village of Hamilton
Village of Bill Moore's Slough
Village of Kotlik
Koyuk Native Village of Koyuk
Kwigillingok Native Village of Kwigillingok
Levelock Levelock Village
Manokotak Manokotak Village
Mekoryak Native Village of Mekoryak
Naknek Naknek Native Village
Napakiak Native Village of Napakiak
Napaskiak Native Village of Napaskiak
Newtok Newtok Village
Nightmute Native Village of Nightmute
Umkumiute Native Village
Nome King Island Native Community
Nome Eskimo Community
Oscarville Oscarville Traditional Village
Pilot Point Native Village of Pilot Point
Platinum Platinum Traditional Village
Port Heiden Native Village of Port Heiden
Quinhagak Native Village of Kwinhagak
Scammon Bay Native Village of Scammon Bay
Shaktoolik Native Village of Shaktoolik
Sheldon Point (Nunam Iqua) Native Village of Sheldon's Point
Shishmaref Native Village of Shishmaref
Solomon Village of Solomon
South Naknek South Naknek Village
St. Michael Native Village of Saint Michael
Stebbins Stebbins Community Association
Teller Native Village of Mary's Igloo
Native Village of Teller
Togiak Traditional Village of Togiak
Toksook Bay Native Village of Toksook Bay
Tuntutuliak Native Village of Tuntutuliak
Tununak Native Village of Tununak
Twin Hills Twin Hills Village
Ugashik Ugashik Village
Unalakleet Native Village of Unalakleet
Wales Native Village of Wales
White Mountain Native Village of White Mountain

(3) A person is eligible to harvest subsistence halibut if he or she is a rural resident in one of the rural areas of Alaska described as follows:

(i) Southeast Alaska east of 141° W. long., except for the land areas of the Ketchikan Gateway Borough as described at paragraph (g)(4)(i) of this section, the land areas of the City and Borough of Juneau, and the Ketchikan and Juneau non-subsistence marine waters areas as defined in paragraphs (h)(3)(i) and (h)(3)(ii) of this section (see figures 2 and 3 to this subpart E).

(ii) The Alaska Peninsula, Aleutian Islands, Kodiak Island Archipelago, and the area south of the northern boundary of the Bristol Bay Borough and south of 58°39.2′ N. lat. (see figures 5, 6, and 7 to this subpart E).

(iii) Nelson, Nunivak, and Saint Lawrence Islands (see figure 6 to this subpart E).

(iv) All other areas of Alaska within ten statute miles of mean high water on the Bering Sea and Pacific Ocean coasts, south of Cape Espenberg, including along the Kuskokwim River to Bethel, and that are not specified as non-rural land or water areas as defined in paragraph (g)(4) of this section (see figures 4, 5, 6, and 7 to this subpart E).

(4) Non-rural areas consist of the non-subsistence marine waters areas defined in paragraph (h)(3) of this section and the land areas of the following cities and boroughs for purposes of the subsistence fishery for Pacific halibut in waters in and off Alaska:

(i) The Ketchikan Gateway Borough on May 18, 2008. This area encompasses all those islands bounded on the east, north, and west by Behm Canal, Behm Narrows, and Clarence Strait to its junction with Nichols Passage, and on the south by Nichols and Revillagigedo Channel to its junction with Behm Canal. The designated boundaries extend to the center line of Behm Canal, Behm Narrows, Clarence Strait, Nichols Passage, and Revillagigedo Channel, and include all the area of Revillagigedo, Gravina, Pennock, Betton, Grant and other Clover Passage and Naha Bay Islands, Hassler, Gedney, Black, Smeaton, Manzanita, Rudyerd, and Bold Islands, and all other offshore and adjacent islands and inlets thereto (see figure 2 to this subpart E).

(ii) The City and Borough of Juneau (see figure 3 to this subpart E).

(iii) The Greater Anchorage Area Borough (see figures 4 and 5 to this subpart E).

(iv) The Matanuska-Susitna Borough (see figure 5 to this subpart E).

(v) The Kenai Peninsula Borough excluding the area of the Seldovia Census Designated Place, the area south and west of that place, and the area south and west of a line that runs from 59°27.5′ N. lat., 151°31.7′ W. long. to 59°12.5′ N. lat., 151°18.5′ W. long (see figure 5 to this subpart E).

(vi) The City of Valdez (see figures 4 and 5 to this subpart E).

(h) Limitations on subsistence fishing. Subsistence fishing for halibut may be conducted only by persons who qualify for such fishing pursuant to paragraph (g) of this section and who hold a valid subsistence halibut registration certificate in that person's name issued by NMFS pursuant to paragraph (i) of this section, provided that such fishing is consistent with the following limitations.

(1) Subsistence fishing is limited to setline gear and hand-held gear, including longline, handline, rod and reel, spear, jig and hand-troll gear.

(i) Subsistence fishing gear set or retrieved from a vessel while engaged in subsistence fishing for halibut must not have more than the allowable number of hooks per vessel, or per person registered in accordance with paragraph (i) of this section and aboard the vessel, whichever is less, according to the regulatory area and permit type indicated in the following table:

Regulatory Area Permit Type Gear Restrictions
2C - Except Sitka Sound, and Ketchikan and Juneau non-subsistence marine waters areas SHARC 30 hooks per vessel
Ceremonial Permit 30 hooks per vessel
Educational Permit 30 hooks per vessel
Community Harvest Permit 30 hooks per person onboard up to 90 hooks per vessel
2C - Sitka Sound SHARC September 1 through May 31: 30 hooks per vessel
June 1 through August 31: 15 hooks per vessel; no power hauling
Ceremonial Permit September 1 through May 31: 30 hooks per vessel
June 1 through August 31: fishing under Ceremonial Permit not allowed
Educational Permit 30 hooks per vessel
Community Harvest Permit fishing under Community Harvest Permit not allowed
2C - Ketchikan and Juneau non-subsistence marine waters areas SHARC general subsistence halibut fishing not allowed
Ceremonial Permit 30 hooks per vessel
Educational Permit 30 hooks per vessel
Community Harvest Permit fishing under Community Harvest Permit not allowed
3A - Except Chiniak Bay, and Anchorage-Matsu-Kenai and Valdez non-subsistence marine waters areas SHARC 30 hooks per person onboard up to 90 hooks per vessel
Ceremonial Permit 30 hooks per person onboard up to 90 hooks per vessel
Educational Permit 30 hooks per person onboard up to 90 hooks per vessel
Community Harvest Permit 30 hooks per person onboard up to 90 hooks per vessel
3A - Chiniak Bay SHARC 30 hooks per person onboard up to 60 hooks per vessel
Ceremonial Permit 30 hooks per person onboard up to 90 hooks per vessel
Educational Permit 30 hooks per person onboard up to 90 hooks per vessel
Community Harvest Permit 30 hooks per person onboard up to 90 hooks per vessel
3A - Anchorage-Matsu-Kenai and Valdez non-subsistence marine waters areas SHARC general subsistence halibut fishing not allowed
Ceremonial Permit 30 hooks per person onboard up to 90 hooks per vessel
Educational Permit 30 hooks per person onboard up to 90 hooks per vessel
Community Harvest Permit fishing under Community Harvest Permit not allowed
3B SHARC 30 hooks per person onboard up to 90 hooks per vessel
4A and 4B SHARC 30 hooks per person onboard up to 90 hooks per vessel
4C, 4D, and 4E SHARC no hook limit

(ii) All setline gear marker buoys carried on board or used by any vessel regulated under this section shall be marked with the following: first initial, last name, and address (street, city, and state), followed by the letter “S” to indicate that it is used to harvest subsistence halibut.

(iii) Markings on setline marker buoys shall be in characters at least 4 inches (10.16 cm) in height and 0.5 inch (1.27 cm) in width in a contrasting color visible above the water line and shall be maintained so the markings are clearly visible.

(2) The retention of subsistence halibut is limited per person eligible to conduct subsistence fishing for halibut and onboard the vessel according to the following table:

Regulatory Area Permit Type Retention Limits
2C - Except Sitka Sound, and Ketchikan and Juneau non-subsistence marine waters areas SHARC 20 halibut per day per vessel and in possession
Ceremonial Permit 25 halibut per permit
Educational Permit 25 halibut per permit
Community Harvest Permit no daily or possession limit
2C - Sitka Sound SHARC September 1 through May 31: 10 halibut per day per vessel and in possession
June 1 through August 31: 5 halibut per day per vessel and in possession
Ceremonial Permit September 1 through May 31: 25 halibut per permit
June 1 through August 31: fishing under Ceremonial Permit not allowed
Educational Permit 25 halibut per permit
Community Harvest Permit fishing under Community Harvest Permit not allowed
2C - Ketchikan and Juneau non-subsistence marine waters areas SHARC general subsistence halibut fishing not allowed
Ceremonial Permit 25 halibut per permit
Educational Permit 25 halibut per permit
Community Harvest Permit fishing under Community Harvest Permit not allowed
3A - Including Chiniak Bay, but excluding Anchorage-Matsu-Kenai and Valdez non-subsistence marine waters areas SHARC 20 halibut per person per day and in possession
Ceremonial Permit 25 halibut per permit
Educational Permit 25 halibut per permit
Community Harvest Permit no daily or possession limit
3A - Anchorage-Matsu-Kenai and Valdez non-subsistence marine waters areas SHARC general subsistence halibut fishing not allowed
Ceremonial Permit 25 halibut per permit
Educational Permit 25 halibut per permit
Community Harvest Permit fishing under Community Harvest Permit not allowed
3B SHARC 20 halibut per person per day and in possession
4A and 4B SHARC 20 halibut per person per day; no possession limit
4C, 4D, and 4E SHARC no daily or possession limit

(3) Subsistence fishing may be conducted in any waters in and off Alaska except in the four non-subsistence marine waters areas defined as follows:

(i) Ketchikan non-subsistence marine waters area in Commission regulatory area 2C (see Figure 2 to subpart E) is defined as those waters between a line from Caamano Point at 55°29.90′ N. lat., 131°58.25′ W. long. to Point Higgins at 55°27.42′ N. lat., 131°50.00′ W. long. and a point at 55°11.78′ N. lat., 131°05.13′ W. long., located on Point Sykes to a point at 55°12.22′ N. lat., 131°05.70′ W. long., located one-half mile northwest of Point Sykes to Point Alava at 55°11.54′ N. lat., 131°11.00′ W. long. and within one mile of the mainland and the Gravina and Revillagigedo Island shorelines, including within one mile of the Cleveland Peninsula shoreline and east of the longitude of Niblack Point at 132°07.23′ W. long., and north of the latitude of the southernmost tip of Mary Island at 55°02.66′ N. lat.;

(ii) Juneau non-subsistence marine waters area in Commission regulatory area 2C (see Figure 3 to subpart E) is defined as those waters of Stephens Passage and contiguous waters north of the latitude of Midway Island Light (57°50.21′ N. lat.), including the waters of Taku Inlet, Port Snettisham, Saginaw Channel, and Favorite Channel, and those waters of Lynn Canal and contiguous waters south of the latitude of the northernmost entrance of Berners Bay (58°43.07′ N. lat.), including the waters of Berners Bay and Echo Cove, and those waters of Chatham Strait and contiguous waters north of the latitude of Point Marsden (58°03.42′ N. lat.), and east of a line from Point Couverden at 58°11.38′ N. lat., 135°03.40′ W. long., to Point Augusta at 58°02.38′ N. lat., 134°57.11′ W. long.;

(iii) The Anchorage-Matsu-Kenai non-subsistence marine waters area in Commission Regulatory Area 3A (see figures 4, 5, 6, and 7 to this subpart E) is defined as:

(A) All waters of Cook Inlet north of a line extending from the westernmost point of Hesketh Island at 59°30.40′ N. lat., except those waters within mean lower low tide from a point one mile south of the southern edge of the Chuitna River (61°05.00′ N. lat., 151°01.00′ W. long.) south to the easternmost tip of Granite Point (61°01.00′ N. lat., 151°23.00′ W. long.) (Tyonek subdistrict); and

(B) All waters of Alaska south of 59°30.40′ N. lat. on the western shore of Cook Inlet to Cape Douglas (58°51.10′ N. lat.) and in the east to Cape Fairfield (148°50.25′ W. long.), except those waters of Alaska west of a line from the easternmost point of Jakolof Bay (151°31.90′ W. long.), and following the shore to a line extending south from the easternmost point of Rocky Bay (151°18.41′ W. long.); and

(iv) Valdez non-subsistence marine waters area in Commission regulatory area 3A (see figures 4 and 5 to this subpart E) is defined as the waters of Port Valdez and Valdez Arm located north of 61°01.38′ N. lat., and east of 146°43.80′ W. long.

(4) Waters in and off Alaska that are not specifically identified as non-subsistence marine waters areas in paragraph (h)(3) of this section are rural for purposes of subsistence fishing for halibut. Subsistence fishing may be conducted in any rural area by any person with a valid subsistence halibut registration certificate in his or her name issued by NMFS under paragraph (i) of this section, except that:

(i) A person who is not a rural resident but who is a member of an Alaska Native tribe that is located in a rural area and that is listed in the table in paragraph (g)(2) of this section is limited to conducting subsistence fishing for halibut only in his or her area of tribal membership.

(ii) A person who is a resident outside the State of Alaska but who is a member of an Alaska Native tribe that is located in a rural area and that is listed in the table in paragraph (g)(2) of this section is limited to conducting subsistence fishing for halibut only in his or her area of tribal membership.

(iii) For purposes of this paragraph (h)(4), “area of tribal membership” means rural areas of the Commission regulatory area under which the Organized Tribal Entity is listed in the tables set out in paragraph (g)(2) of this section, or the Bering Sea closed area adjacent to the rural area in which the Alaska Native tribal headquarters is located.

(i) Subsistence registration. A person must register as a subsistence halibut fisher and possess a valid subsistence halibut registration certificate in his or her name issued by NMFS before he or she begins subsistence fishing for halibut in waters in and off Alaska.

(1) A subsistence halibut registration certificate will be issued to any person who registers according to paragraph (i)(2) of this section and who is qualified to conduct subsistence fishing for halibut according to paragraph (g) of this section. The Alaska Region, NMFS, may enter into cooperative agreements with Alaska Native tribal governments or their representative organizations for purposes of identifying persons qualified to conduct subsistence fishing for halibut according to paragraph (g) of this section.

(2) Registration. To register as a subsistence halibut fisherman, a person may request a cooperating Alaska Native tribal government or other entity designated by NMFS to submit an application on his or her behalf to the Alaska Region, NMFS. Alternatively, a person may apply by submitting a completed application to the Alaska Region, NMFS. Application forms are available on the NMFS Alaska Region Web site at http://alaskafisheries.noaa.gov, or by contacting NMFS at 800-304-4846, Option 2. NMFS will process a SHARC Application for an Alaska Native Tribal Member or a SHARC Application for a Rural Resident provided that an application is completed, with all applicable fields accurately filled-in, and all required additional documentation is submitted. Initial applications for a SHARC must be signed and mailed or faxed to NMFS (see instructions on form). Renewals may be submitted electronically, mailed, or faxed.

(i) Non-electronic submittal. The applicant must sign and date the application certifying that all information is true, correct, and complete. The applicant must submit the paper application as indicated on the application.

(ii) Electronic submittal. An individual can submit a SHARC renewal on-line using an application available at the Alaska Region website. By using the SHARC number and date of birth, and by submitting the application form, the applicant certifies that all information is true, correct, and complete.

(3) Expiration of registration. Each subsistence halibut registration certificate will be valid only for the period of time specified on the certificate. A person eligible to harvest subsistence halibut under paragraph (g) of this section may renew his or her registration certificate that is expired or will expire within 3 months by following the procedures described in paragraph (i)(2) of this section. A subsistence halibut registration certificate will expire:

(i) 2 years from the date of its issuance to a person eligible to harvest subsistence halibut under paragraph (g)(1) of this section, and

(ii) 4 years from the date of its issuance to a person eligible to harvest subsistence halibut under paragraph (g)(2) of this section.

(j) Community Harvest Permit (CHP). An Area 2C or Area 3A community or Alaska Native tribe listed in paragraphs (g)(1) or (g)(2) of this section may apply for a CHP, which allows a community or Alaska Native tribe to appoint one or more individuals from its respective community or Alaska Native tribe to harvest subsistence halibut from a single vessel under reduced gear and harvest restrictions. The CHP consists of a harvest log and up to five laminated permit cards. A CHP is a permit subject to regulation under § 679.4(a) of this title.

(1) Qualifications.

(i) NMFS may issue a CHP to any community or Alaska Native tribe that applies according to paragraph (j)(2) of this section and that is qualified to conduct subsistence fishing for halibut according to paragraph (g) of this section.

(ii) NMFS will issue a CHP to a community in Area 2C or Area 3A only if:

(A) The applying community is listed as eligible in Area 2C or Area 3A according to paragraph (g)(1) of this section; and

(B) No Alaska Native tribe listed in paragraph (g)(2) of this section exists in that community.

(iii) NMFS will issue a CHP to an Alaska Native tribe in Area 2C or Area 3A only if the applying tribe is listed as eligible in Area 2C or Area 3A according to paragraph (g)(2) of this section.

(iv) Eligible communities or Alaska Native tribes may appoint only one CHP Coordinator per community or tribe.

(2) Application. A community or Alaska Native tribe may apply for a CHP by submitting an application to the Alaska Region, NMFS. Applications must be mailed to: Restricted Access Management Program, NMFS, Alaska Region, P.O. Box 21668, Juneau, AK 99802-1668. A complete application must include:

(i) The name of the community or Alaska Native tribe requesting the CHP;

(ii) The full name of the person who is designated as the CHP Coordinator for each community or Alaska Native tribe, the designated CHP Coordinator's mailing address (number and street, city, state, and zip code), community of residence (the rural community or residence from paragraph (g)(1) of this section) or the Alaska Native tribe if applicable (as indicated in paragraph (g)(2) of this section), and the daytime telephone number; and

(iii) Any previously issued CHP harvest logs.

(3) Restrictions. Subsistence fishing for halibut under a CHP shall be valid only:

(i) In Area 2C or Area 3A, except that a CHP may not be used:

(A) Within Sitka Sound as defined in paragraph (e)(1)(ii) of this section (see Figure 1 to this subpart E); or

(B) Within the Ketchikan, Juneau, Anchorage-Matsu-Kenai, and Valdez non-subsistence marine waters areas as defined in paragraph (h)(3) of this section (see figures 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7 to this subpart E).

(ii) To persons in possession of a valid subsistence halibut registration certificate issued in accordance with paragraph (i) of this section for the same community or Alaska Native tribe listed on the CHP;

(iii) On a single vessel on which a CHP card is present; and

(iv) If subsistence fishing gear set or retrieved from a vessel on which the CHP card is present does not exceed the restrictions of paragraph (h) of this section.

(4) Expiration of permit. Each CHP will be valid only for the period of time specified on the permit. A CHP will expire one year from the date of issuance to a community or Alaska Native tribe eligible to harvest halibut under paragraph (g) of this section. A community or Alaska Native tribe eligible to harvest subsistence halibut under paragraph (g) of this section may renew its CHP that is expired or will expire within three months by following the procedures described in paragraph (j)(2) of this section.

(5) Duties of the CHP coordinator. Each CHP Coordinator must ensure:

(i) The designated harvesters who may fish under the CHP are identified on the Community Harvest Permit harvest log when the CHP is issued to the designated harvesters;

(ii) The CHP remains in the possession of the CHP Coordinator or other tribal or government authority when not in use and is issued to the designated harvesters when necessary; and

(iii) All required recordkeeping and data reporting of subsistence harvests under the CHP are performed.

(6) Harvest log submission. Each Community Harvest Permit harvest log must be submitted to NMFS on or before the date of expiration by facsimile or mail. Harvest logs must be mailed to RAM at the address given in paragraph (j)(2) of this section or faxed to 907-586-7354. The log must provide information on:

(i) The subsistence fisher's identity including his or her full name, subsistence halibut registration certificate number, date of birth, mailing address (number and street, city, state, and zip code), community of residence, daytime phone number, and tribal identity (if appropriate); and

(ii) The subsistence halibut harvest including whether the participant fished for subsistence halibut during the period specified on the permit, and if so, the date harvest occurred, the number and weight (in pounds) of halibut harvested, the type of gear and number of hooks used, the Commission regulatory area and local water body from which the halibut were harvested, and the number of lingcod and rockfish caught while subsistence fishing for halibut.

(k) Ceremonial Permit or Educational Permit. An Area 2C or Area 3A Alaska Native tribe that is listed in paragraph (g)(2) of this section may apply for a Ceremonial or Educational Permit, allowing the tribe to harvest up to 25 halibut per permit issued. The Ceremonial and Educational Permits each consist of a harvest log and a single laminated permit card. Ceremonial and Educational Permits are permits subject to regulation under § 679.4(a) of this title.

(1) Qualifications.

(i) NMFS may issue a Ceremonial or Educational Permit to any Alaska Native tribe that completes an application according to paragraph (k)(2) of this section and that is qualified to conduct subsistence fishing for halibut according to paragraph (g)(2) of this section.

(ii) Eligible Alaska Native tribes may appoint only one Ceremonial Permit Coordinator per tribe.

(iii) Eligible educational programs may appoint only one authorized Instructor per Educational Permit.

(2) Application. An Alaska Native tribe may apply for a Ceremonial or Educational Permit by submitting an application to the Alaska Region, NMFS. Applications must be mailed to: Restricted Access Management Program, NMFS, Alaska Region, P.O. Box 21668, Juneau, AK 99802-1668.

(i) A complete application must include:

(A) The name of the Alaska Native tribe requesting the Ceremonial or Educational Permit;

(B) The name of the person designated as the Ceremonial Permit Coordinator for each Alaska Native tribe or the name of the person designated as the Instructor for an Educational Permit, the Ceremonial Permit Coordinator or Instructor's mailing address (number and street, city, state, and zip code), and the daytime telephone number;

(C) Any previously issued Ceremonial Permit harvest logs from any expired Ceremonial Permit if applying for a Ceremonial Permit; and

(D) Any previously issued Educational Permit harvest logs from any expired Educational Permit if applying for an Educational Permit.

(ii) NMFS will issue a Ceremonial Permit for the harvest of halibut associated with traditional cultural events only if the application:

(A) Indicates the occasion of cultural or ceremonial significance; and

(B) Identifies the person designated by the eligible Alaska Native tribe as the Ceremonial Permit Coordinator.

(iii) NMFS will issue an Educational Permit only if the application:

(A) Includes the name and address of the educational institution or organization;

(B) Includes the instructor's name;

(C) Demonstrates the enrollment of qualified students;

(D) Describes minimum attendance requirements of the educational program; and

(E) Describes standards for the successful completion of the educational program.

(3) Restrictions. Subsistence fishing for halibut under Ceremonial or Educational Permits shall be valid only:

(i) In Area 3A, except:

(A) In the Anchorage-Matsu-Kenai non-subsistence marine waters area defined in paragraph (h)(3) of this section (see figures 4, 5, 6, and 7 to this subpart E), only the following tribes may use a Ceremonial or Educational permit:

(1) Kenaitze Indian Tribe;

(2) Seldovia Village Tribe;

(3) Ninilchik Village;

(4) Native Village of Port Graham;

(5) Native Village of Nanwalek; and

(6) Village of Salamatoff.

(B) In the Valdez non-subsistence marine waters area defined in paragraph (h)(3) of this section (see figures 4 and 5 to this subpart E), only the Native Village of Tatitlek may use a Ceremonial or Educational permit.

(ii) In Area 2C, except:

(A) In the Ketchikan non-subsistence marine waters area defined in paragraph (h)(3) of this section (see figure 2 to this subpart E), only the following tribes may use a Ceremonial or Educational permit:

(1) Central Council of Tlingit/Haida Indians;

(2) Ketchikan Indian Corporation; and

(3) Organized Village of Saxman;

(B) In the Juneau non-subsistence marine waters area defined in paragraph (h)(3) of this section (see figure 3 to this subpart E), only the following tribes may use a Ceremonial or Educational permit:

(1) Central Council of Tlingit/Haida Indians;

(2) Douglas Indian Association; and

(3) Aukquan Traditional Council.

(C) A Ceremonial Permit may not be used within Sitka Sound from June 1 through August 31;

(iii) On a single vessel on which the Ceremonial or Educational Permit card is present;

(iv) On the vessel on which the instructor is present for Educational Permits;

(v) To persons in possession of a valid subsistence halibut registration certificate issued in accordance with paragraph (i) of this section for the same Alaska Native tribe listed on the Ceremonial or Educational Permit, except that students enrolled in an educational program may fish under an Educational Permit without a subsistence halibut registration certificate; and

(vi) If subsistence fishing gear set or retrieved from a vessel on which the Ceremonial or Educational Permit card is present does not exceed the restrictions of paragraph (h) of this section.

(4) Expiration of permits. Each Ceremonial or Educational Permit will be valid only for the period of time specified on the permit. Ceremonial and Educational Permits will expire 30 days from the date of issuance to an Alaska Native tribe eligible to harvest halibut under paragraph (g)(2) of this section. A tribe eligible to harvest subsistence halibut under paragraph (g)(2) of this section may apply for additional Ceremonial or Educational Permits at any time.

(5) Duties of Ceremonial Permit Coordinators and Instructors. Each Ceremonial Permit Coordinator or Instructor must ensure:

(i) The designated harvesters or students who may fish under the Ceremonial or Educational Permit are identified on the Ceremonial/Educational Permit harvest log when the permit is used;

(ii) The Ceremonial Permit remains in the possession of the Ceremonial Permit Coordinator or other tribal authority when not in use and is issued to designated harvesters when necessary; and

(iii) All required recordkeeping and data reporting of subsistence harvests under the Ceremonial or Educational Permit are performed.

(6) Harvest log submission. Submission of a Ceremonial or Educational Permit log shall be required upon the expiration of each permit and must be received by Restricted Access Management within 15 days of the expiration by facsimile or mail. Harvest logs must be mailed to RAM at the address given in paragraph (k)(2) of this section or faxed to 907-586-7354. The log must provide information on:

(i) The subsistence fisher's identity including his or her full name, subsistence halibut registration certificate number if applicable (students do not need a SHARC), date of birth, mailing address (number and street, city, state, and zip code), community of residence, daytime phone number, and tribal identity;

(ii) The subsistence halibut harvest including whether the participant fished for subsistence halibut during the period indicated on the permit, and if so, the date when harvest occurred, the number and weight (in pounds) of halibut harvested, the type of gear and number of hooks used, the Commission regulatory area and local water body from which the halibut were harvested, and the number of lingcod and rockfish caught while subsistence fishing for halibut.

(l) Appeals. If Restricted Access Management (RAM) determines that an application is deficient, it will prepare and send an Initial Administrative Determination (IAD) to the applicant. The IAD will indicate the deficiencies in the application or any additional provided information. An applicant who receives an IAD may appeal RAM's findings pursuant to § 679.43 of this title.

[68 FR 18156, Apr. 15, 2003]

§ 300.66 Prohibitions.

In addition to the general prohibitions specified in 50 CFR 300.4, it is unlawful for any person to do any of the following:

(a) Fish for halibut except in accordance with the annual management measures published pursuant to 50 CFR 300.62.

(b) Fish for halibut except in accordance with the catch sharing plans and domestic management measures implemented under §§ 300.63, 300.65, and 300.67.

(c) Fish for halibut in Sitka Sound in violation of the Sitka Sound LAMP implemented under 50 CFR 300.65(e).

(d) Fish for halibut or anchor a vessel with halibut on board within the Sitka Pinnacles Marine Reserve defined at 50 CFR 300.65(f).

(e) Fish for subsistence halibut in and off Alaska unless the person is qualified to do so under § 300.65(g), possesses a valid subsistence halibut registration certificate pursuant to § 300.65(i), and makes this certificate available for inspection by an authorized officer on request, except that students enrolled in a valid educational program and fishing under an Educational Permit issued pursuant to § 300.65(k) do not need a subsistence halibut registration certificate.

(f) Fish for subsistence halibut in and off Alaska with gear other than that described at 50 CFR 300.65(h)(1) and retain more halibut than specified at 50 CFR 300.65(h)(2).

(g) Fish for subsistence halibut in and off Alaska in a non-subsistence marine waters area specified at § 300.65(h)(3).

(h) Conduct subsistence fishing for halibut while commercial fishing or sport fishing for halibut, as defined in § 300.61, from the same vessel on the same calendar day, or possess on board a vessel halibut harvested while subsistence fishing with halibut harvested while commercial fishing or sport fishing, except that persons authorized to conduct subsistence fishing under § 300.65(g), and who land their total annual harvest of halibut:

(1) In Commission regulatory Areas 4D or 4E may retain, with harvests of Community Development Quota (CDQ) halibut, subsistence halibut harvested in Commission regulatory areas 4D or 4E that are smaller than the size limit specified in the annual management measures published pursuant to § 300.62; or

(2) In Commission regulatory Areas 4C, 4D or 4E may retain, with harvests of CDQ halibut, subsistence halibut harvested in Commission regulatory areas 4C, 4D or 4E that are equal to or greater than the size limit specified in the annual management measures published pursuant to § 300.62.

(i) Conduct commercial and sport fishing for halibut, as defined in § 300.61, from the same vessel on the same calendar day.

(j) Fish for subsistence halibut from a charter vessel or retain subsistence halibut onboard a charter vessel if anyone other than the owner of record, as indicated on the State of Alaska vessel registration, or the owner's immediate family is aboard the charter vessel and unless each person engaging in subsistence fishing onboard the charter vessel holds a subsistence halibut registration certificate in the person's name pursuant to § 300.65(i) and complies with the gear and harvest restrictions found at § 300.65(h). For purposes of this paragraph (i), the term “charter vessel” means a vessel that is registered, or that should be registered, as a sport fishing guide vessel with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.

(k) Retain or possess subsistence halibut for commercial purposes; cause subsistence halibut to be sold, bartered, or otherwise entered into commerce; or solicit exchange of subsistence halibut for commercial purposes, except that a person who qualified to conduct subsistence fishing for halibut under § 300.65(g), and who holds a subsistence halibut registration certificate in the person's name under § 300.65(i), may be reimbursed for the expense of fishing for subsistence halibut under the following conditions:

(1) Persons who qualify as rural residents under § 300.65(g)(1) or (g)(3) and hold a SHARC in the person's name under § 300.65(i) may be reimbursed for actual expenses for ice, bait, food, and fuel directly related to subsistence fishing for halibut, by residents of the same rural community or by rural residents residing within ten statute miles of the rural location listed on the person's SHARC application; or

(2) Persons who qualify as Alaska Native tribal members under § 300.65(g)(2) and hold a SHARC in the person's name under § 300.65(i) may be reimbursed for actual expenses for ice, bait, food, and fuel directly related to subsistence fishing for halibut, by any Alaska Native tribe, or its members, or residents of the same rural community or by rural residents residing within ten statute miles of the rural location listed on the person's SHARC application.

(l) Retain subsistence halibut harvested under a CHP, Ceremonial Permit, or Educational Permit together in any combination or with halibut harvested under any other license or permit.

(m) Fillet, mutilate, or otherwise disfigure subsistence halibut in any manner that prevents the determination of the number of fish caught, possessed, or landed.

(n) Exceed any of the harvest or gear limitations specified at § 300.65(c)(5) or adopted by the Commission as annual management measures and published in the Federal Register as required in § 300.62.

(o) Transfer subsistence halibut to charter vessel anglers.

(p) Fail to comply with the requirements of §§ 300.65 and 300.67.

(q) Fail to submit or submit inaccurate information on any report, license, catch card, application, or statement required or submitted under §§ 300.65 and 300.67, or submit inaccurate information to an authorized officer.

(r) Refuse to present valid identification, U.S. Coast Guard operator's license, permit, license, or Alaska Department of Fish and Game Saltwater Sport Fishing Charter Trip logbook upon the request of an authorized officer.

(s) Be a charter vessel guide with charter vessel anglers on board, or a charter vessel operator if the charter vessel guide is not on board, in Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A without an original valid charter halibut permit for the regulatory area in which the charter vessel is operating during a charter vessel fishing trip.

(t) Be a charter vessel guide in Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A with more charter vessel anglers catching and retaining halibut during a charter vessel fishing trip than the total angler endorsement number specified on the charter halibut permit(s) or community charter halibut permit(s) in use for that trip.

(u) Be a charter vessel guide of a charter vessel on which one or more charter vessel anglers are catching and retaining halibut in both Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A during one charter vessel fishing trip.

(v) Be a charter vessel guide or a charter vessel operator during a charter vessel fishing trip in Commission regulatory area 2C or 3A with one or more charter vessel anglers that are catching and retaining halibut without having on board the vessel with the charter vessel anglers a State of Alaska Department of Fish and Game Saltwater Charter Logbook in which the charter vessel guide has specified the following:

(1) The person named on the charter halibut permit or permits being used during that charter vessel fishing trip;

(2) The charter halibut permit or permits number(s) being used during that charter vessel fishing trip; and

(3) The name and State-issued vessel registration (AK number) or U.S. Coast Guard documentation number of the charter vessel.

[68 FR 18156, Apr. 15, 2003, as amended at 70 FR 16754, Apr. 1, 2005; 72 FR 30728, June 4, 2007; 72 FR 67669, Nov. 30, 2007; 73 FR 30524, May 28, 2008; 73 FR 52797, Sept. 11, 2008; 73 FR 54942, Sept. 24, 2008; 74 FR 21228, May 6, 2009; 74 FR 57110, Nov. 4, 2009; 75 FR 600, Jan. 5, 2010; 78 FR 75890, Dec. 12, 2013; 80 FR 35206, June 19, 2015]

§ 300.67 Charter halibut limited access program.

This section establishes limitations on using a vessel on which charter vessel anglers catch and retain Pacific halibut in International Pacific Halibut Commission (IPHC) regulatory areas 2C and 3A.

(a) General permit requirements.

(1) In addition to other applicable permit, licensing, or registration requirements, any charter vessel guide of a charter vessel during a charter vessel fishing trip with one or more charter vessel anglers catching and retaining Pacific halibut on board must have on board the vessel an original valid charter halibut permit or permits endorsed for the regulatory area in which the charter vessel is operating and endorsed for at least the number of charter vessel anglers who are catching and retaining Pacific halibut. Each charter halibut permit holder must ensure that the charter vessel operator and charter vessel guide of the charter vessel comply with all requirements of §§ 300.65, 300.66, and 300.67.

(2) Area endorsement. A charter halibut permit is valid only in the International Pacific Halibut Commission regulatory area for which it is endorsed. Regulatory areas are defined in the annual management measures published pursuant to § 300.62.

(3) Charter vessel angler endorsement. A charter halibut permit is valid for up to the maximum number of charter vessel anglers on a single charter vessel for which the charter halibut permit is endorsed.

(4) Annual registration. A charter halibut permit holder must register a charter halibut permit with NMFS during the calendar year when it will be used to be valid.

(i) Application and submittal. An application for a charter halibut permit annual registration will be made available by NMFS. A completed registration application may be submitted using the NMFS-approved electronic reporting system on the Alaska Region website at https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/region/alaska. Completed applications may also be submitted by mail, hand delivery, or facsimile at any time to the address(s) listed on the application.

(ii) Complete annual registration. To be complete, a charter halibut permit registration application must have all required fields accurately completed and be signed and dated by the applicant.

(iii) Denied registration applications. If NMFS does not approve an annual charter halibut permit registration application, NMFS will inform the applicant of the basis for its disapproval and provide the applicant with a 30-day evidentiary period in which to correct any application deficiencies.

(A) Initial Administration Determination (IAD). NMFS will send an IAD to the applicant following the expiration of the 30-day evidentiary period if NMFS determines there is sufficient reason to deny the application. The IAD will indicate the deficiencies in the application and the deficiencies with the information submitted by the applicant in support of its claim.

(B) Appeal. An applicant that receives an IAD may appeal to the Office of Administrative Appeals (OAA) pursuant to 15 CFR part 906.

(b) Qualifications for a charter halibut permit. A charter halibut permit for IPHC regulatory area 2C must be based on meeting participation requirements in area 2C. A charter halibut permit for IPHC regulatory area 3A must be based on meeting participation requirements in area 3A. Qualifications for a charter halibut permit in each area must be determined separately and must not be combined.

(1) NMFS will issue a charter halibut permit to a person who meets the following requirements:

(i) The person applies for a charter halibut permit within the application period specified in the Federal Register and completes the application process pursuant to paragraph (h) of this section.

(ii) The person is the individual or non-individual entity to which the State of Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) issued the ADF&G Business Owner Licenses that authorized logbook fishing trips that meet the minimum participation requirements described in paragraphs (b)(1)(ii)(A) and (b)(1)(ii)(B) of this section for one or more charter halibut permits, unless the person is applying as a successor-in-interest.

(A) Reported five (5) bottomfish logbook fishing trips or more during one year of the qualifying period; and

(B) Reported five (5) halibut logbook fishing trips or more during the recent participation period.

(iii) If the person is applying as a successor-in-interest to the person to which ADF&G issued the Business Owner Licenses that authorized logbook fishing trips that meet the participation requirements described in paragraphs (b)(1)(ii) of this section for one or more charter halibut permits, NMFS will require the following written documentation:

(A) If the applicant is applying on behalf of a deceased individual, the applicant must document that the individual is deceased, that the applicant is the personal representative of the deceased's estate appointed by a court, and that the applicant specifies who, pursuant to the applicant's personal representative duties, should receive the permit(s) for which application is made; or

(B) If the applicant is applying as a successor-in-interest to an entity that is not an individual, the applicant must document that the entity has been dissolved and that the applicant is the successor-in-interest to the dissolved entity.

(iv) If more than one applicant claims that they are the successor-in-interest to a dissolved entity, NMFS will award the permit or permits for which the dissolved entity qualified in the name(s) of the applicants that submitted a timely application and proved that they are a successor-in-interest to the dissolved entity.

(2) Notwithstanding any other provision in this subpart, and except as provided in paragraph (b)(1)(iv) of this section,

(i) One logbook fishing trip shall not be credited to more than one applicant;

(ii) One logbook fishing trip made pursuant to one ADF&G Business Owner License shall not be credited to more than one applicant; and

(iii) Participation by one charter halibut fishing business shall not be allowed to support issuance of permits to more than one applicant.

(3) For purposes of this section, the term “ADF&G Business Owner(s) License(s)” includes a “business registration,” “sport fish business owner license,” “sport fish business license,” and “ADF&G business license”.

(c) Number of charter halibut permits. An applicant that meets the participation requirements in paragraph (b) of this section will be issued the number of charter halibut permits equal to the lesser of the number of permits determined by paragraphs (c)(1) or (c)(2) of this section as follows:

(1) The total number of bottomfish logbook fishing trips made pursuant to the applicant's ADF&G Business License in the applicant-selected year divided by five, and rounded down to a whole number; or

(2) The number of vessels that made the bottomfish logbook fishing trips in the applicant-selected year.

(d) Designation of transferability. Each permit issued to an applicant under paragraph (c) of this section will be designated as transferable or non-transferable.

(1) Minimum participation criteria for a transferable permit are described in paragraphs (d)(1)(i) and (d)(1)(ii) of this section as follows:

(i) Reported fifteen (15) bottomfish logbook fishing trips or more from the same vessel during one year of the qualifying period; and

(ii) Reported fifteen (15) halibut logbook fishing trips or more from the same vessel during the recent participation period.

(iii) The vessel used during the recent participation period is not required to be the same vessel used during the qualifying period.

(2) The number of transferable charter halibut permits issued to an applicant will be equal to the lesser of the number of vessels that met the minimum transferable permit qualifications described in paragraphs (d)(1)(i) or (d)(1)(ii) of this section.

(e) Angler endorsement. A charter halibut permit will be endorsed as follows:

(1) The angler endorsement number for the first transferable permit for an area issued to an applicant will be the greatest number of charter vessel anglers reported on any logbook trip in the qualifying period in that area.

(2) The angler endorsement number for each subsequent transferable permit issued to the same applicant for the same area will be the greatest number of charter vessel anglers reported by the applicant on any logbook trip in the qualifying period for a vessel not already used in that area to determine an angler endorsement, until all transferable permits issued to the applicant are assigned an angler endorsement.

(3) The angler endorsement number for the first non-transferable permit for an area issued to an applicant will be the greatest number of charter vessel anglers reported on any logbook trip in the qualifying period for a vessel not already used to determine an angler endorsement in that area.

(4) The angler endorsement number for each subsequent non-transferable permit issued to the same applicant for the same area will be the greatest number of charter vessel anglers reported by the applicant on any logbook trip in the qualifying period for a vessel not already used in that area to determine an angler endorsement, until all non-transferable permits issued to the applicant are assigned an angler endorsement.

(5) The angler endorsement number will be four (4) if the greatest number of charter vessel anglers reported on any logbook fishing trip for an area in the qualifying period is less than four (4), or no charter vessel anglers were reported on any of the applicant's logbook fishing trips in the applicant-selected year.

(6) The angler endorsement number will be six (6) on a charter halibut permit issued pursuant to military service under paragraph (g)(3) of this section.

(f) For purposes of this section, the following terms are defined as follows:

(1) Applicant-selected year means the year in the qualifying period, 2004 or 2005, selected by the applicant for NMFS to use in determining the applicant's number of transferable and nontransferable permits.

(2) Bottomfish logbook fishing trip means a logbook fishing trip in the qualifying period that was reported to the State of Alaska in a Saltwater Charter Logbook with one of the following pieces of information: The statistical area(s) where bottomfish fishing occurred, the boat hours that the vessel engaged in bottomfish fishing, or the number of rods used from the vessel in bottomfish fishing.

(3) Halibut logbook fishing trip means a logbook fishing trip in the recent participation period that was reported to the State of Alaska in a Saltwater Charter Logbook within the time limit for reporting the trip in effect at the time of the trip with one of the following pieces of information: The number of halibut that was kept, the number of halibut that was released, the statistical area(s) where bottomfish fishing occurred, or the boat hours that the vessel engaged in bottomfish fishing.

(4) Logbook fishing trip means a bottomfish logbook fishing trip or a halibut logbook fishing trip that was reported as a trip to the State of Alaska in a Saltwater Charter Logbook within the time limits for reporting the trip in effect at the time of the trip, except that for multi-day trips, the number of trips will be equal to the number of days of the multi-day trip, e.g., a two day trip will be counted as two trips.

(5) Official charter halibut record means the information prepared by NMFS on participation in charter halibut fishing in Area 2C and Area 3A that NMFS will use to implement the Charter Halibut Limited Access Program and evaluate applications for charter halibut permits.

(6) Qualifying period means the sport fishing season established by the International Pacific Halibut Commission (February 1 through December 31) in 2004 and 2005.

(7) Recent participation period means the sport fishing season established by the International Pacific Halibut Commission (February 1 through December 31) in 2008.

(g) Unavoidable circumstance. Unavoidable circumstance claims must be made pursuant to paragraph (h)(6) of this section, and will be limited to persons who would be excluded from the charter halibut fishery entirely unless their unavoidable circumstance is recognized. This unavoidable circumstance provision cannot be used to upgrade the number of permits issued or to change a non-transferable permit to a transferable permit, and is limited to the following circumstances.

(1) Recent participation period. An applicant for a charter halibut permit that meets the participation requirement for the qualifying period, but does not meet the participation requirement for the recent participation period, may receive one or more charter halibut permits if the applicant proves paragraphs (g)(1)(i) through (iv) of this section as follows:

(i) The applicant had a specific intent to operate a charter halibut fishing business in the recent participation period;

(ii) The applicant's specific intent was thwarted by a circumstance that was:

(A) Unavoidable;

(B) Unique to the owner of the charter halibut fishing business; and

(C) Unforeseen and reasonably unforeseeable by the owner of the charter halibut fishing business;

(iii) The circumstance that prevented the applicant from operating a charter halibut fishing business actually occurred; and

(iv) The applicant took all reasonable steps to overcome the circumstance that prevented the applicant from operating a charter halibut fishing business in the recent participation period.

(v) If the applicant proves the foregoing (see paragraphs (g)(1)(i) through (iv) of this section), the applicant will receive the number of transferable and non-transferable permits and the angler endorsements on these permits that result from the application of criteria in paragraphs (b), (c), (d), (e), and (f) of this section.

(2) Qualifying period. An applicant for a charter halibut permit that meets the participation requirement for the recent participation period but does not meet the participation requirement for the qualifying period, may receive one or more permits if the applicant proves paragraphs (g)(2)(i) through (iv) of this section as follows:

(i) The applicant had a specific intent to operate a charter halibut fishing business in at least one year of the qualifying period;

(ii) The applicant's specific intent was thwarted by a circumstance that was:

(A) Unavoidable;

(B) Unique to the owner of the charter halibut fishing business; and

(C) Unforeseen and reasonably unforeseeable by the owner of the charter halibut fishing business;

(iii) The circumstance that prevented the applicant from operating a charter halibut fishing business actually occurred; and

(iv) The applicant took all reasonable steps to overcome the circumstance that prevented the applicant from operating a charter halibut fishing business in at least one year of the qualifying period.

(v) If the applicant proves the foregoing (see paragraphs (g)(2)(i) through (iv) of this section), the applicant will receive either:

(A) One non-transferable permit with an angler endorsement of four (4); or

(B) The number of transferable and non-transferable permits, and the angler endorsement on those permits, that result from the logbook fishing trips that the applicant proves likely would have taken by the applicant but for the circumstance that thwarted the applicant's specific intent to operate a charter halibut fishing business in one year of the qualifying period and the applicant did not participate during the other year of the qualifying period.

(3) Military service. An applicant for a charter halibut permit that meets the participation requirement in the recent participation period, but does not meet the participation requirement for the qualifying period, may receive one or more permits if the applicant proves the following:

(i) The applicant was ordered to report for active duty military service as a member of a branch of the U.S. military, National Guard, or military reserve during the qualifying period; and

(ii) The applicant had a specific intent to operate a charter halibut fishing business that was thwarted by the applicant's order to report for military service.

(iii) The number of transferable and non-transferable charter halibut permit(s) that an applicant may receive under paragraph (g)(3) of this section will be based on the criteria in paragraph (g)(2)(v)(B) of this section. Angler endorsements on all such charter halibut permits will be pursuant to paragraph (e)(2) of this section.

(h) Application for a charter halibut permit.

(1) An application period of no less than 60 days will be specified by notice in the Federal Register during which any person may apply for a charter halibut permit. Any application that is submitted by mail and postmarked, or submitted by hand delivery or facsimile, after the last day of the application period will be denied. Electronic submission other than by facsimile will be denied. Applications must be submitted to the address given in the Federal Register notice of the application period.

(2) Charter halibut permit. To be complete, a charter halibut permit application must be signed and dated by the applicant, and the applicant must attest that, to the best of the applicant's knowledge, all statements in the application are true and the applicant complied with all legal requirements for logbook fishing trips in the qualifying period and recent participation period that were reported under the applicant's ADF&G Business Owner Licenses. An application for a charter halibut permit will be made available by NMFS. Completed applications may be submitted by mail, hand delivery, or facsimile at any time during the application period announced in the Federal Register notice of the application period described at paragraph (h)(1) of this section.

(3) Application procedure. NMFS will create the official charter halibut record and will accept all application claims that are consistent with the official charter halibut record. If an applicant's claim is not consistent with the official charter halibut record, NMFS will issue non-transferable interim permit(s) for all undisputed permit claims, and will respond to the applicant by letter specifying a 30-day evidentiary period during which the applicant may provide additional information or argument to support the applicant's claim for disputed permit(s). Limits on the 30-day evidentiary period are as follows:

(i) An applicant shall be limited to one 30-day evidentiary period; and

(ii) Additional information received after the 30-day evidentiary period has expired will not be considered for purposes of the initial administrative determination.

(4) After NMFS evaluates the additional information submitted by the applicant during the 30-day evidentiary period, it will take one of the following two actions.

(i) If NMFS determines that the applicant has met its burden of proving that the official charter halibut record is incorrect, NMFS will amend the official charter halibut record and use the official charter halibut record, as amended, to determine whether the applicant is eligible to receive one or more charter halibut permits, the nature of those permits and the angler and area endorsements on those permits; or

(ii) If NMFS determines that the applicant has not met its burden of proving that the official charter halibut record is incorrect, NMFS will notify the applicant by an initial administration determination, pursuant to paragraph (h)(5) of this section.

(5) Initial Administration Determination (IAD). NMFS will send an IAD to the applicant following the expiration of the 30-day evidentiary period if NMFS determines that the applicant has not met its burden of proving that the official charter halibut record is incorrect or that other reasons exist to initially deny the application. The IAD will indicate the deficiencies in the application and the deficiencies with the information submitted by the applicant in support of its claim.

(6) Appeal. An applicant that receives an IAD may appeal to the Office of Administrative Appeals (OAA) pursuant to 15 CFR part 906.

(i) If the applicant does not apply for a charter halibut permit within the application period specified in the Federal Register, the applicant will not receive any interim permits pending final agency action on the application.

(ii) If the applicant applies for a permit within the specified application period and OAA accepts the applicant's appeal, the applicant will receive the number and kind of interim permits which are not in dispute, according to the information in the official charter halibut record.

(iii) If the applicant applies for a permit within the specified application period and OAA accepts the applicant's appeal, but according to the information in the official charter halibut record, the applicant would not be issued any permits, the applicant will receive one interim permit with an angler endorsement of four (4).

(iv) All interim permits will be non-transferable and will expire when NMFS takes final agency action on the application.

(i) Transfer of a charter halibut permit -

(1) General. A transfer of a charter halibut permit is valid only if it is approved by NMFS. NMFS will approve a transfer of a charter halibut permit if the permit to be transferred is a transferable permit issued under paragraph (d)(2) of this section, if a complete transfer application is submitted, and if the transfer application meets the standards for approval in paragraph (i)(2) of this section.

(2) Standards for approval of transfers. NMFS will transfer a transferable charter halibut permit to a person designated by the charter halibut permit holder if, at the time of the transfer the following standards are met:

(i) The person designated to receive the transferred permit is a U.S. citizen or a U.S. business with a minimum of 75 percent U.S. ownership;

(ii) The parties to the transfer do not owe NMFS any fines, civil penalties or any other payments;

(iii) The transfer is not inconsistent with any sanctions resulting from Federal fishing violations;

(iv) The transfer will not cause the designated recipient of the permit to exceed the permit limit at paragraph (j) of this section, unless an exception to that limit applies;

(v) The GAF permit is not assigned to a charter halibut permit for which the GAF account contains unharvested GAF, pursuant to § 300.65 (c)(5)(iii)(A)(3) and (4);

(vi) A transfer application is completed and approved by NMFS; and

(vii) The transfer does not violate any other provision in this part.

(3) For purposes of paragraph (i)(2) of this section, a U.S. business with a minimum of 75 percent U.S. ownership means a corporation, partnership, association, trust, joint venture, limited liability company, limited liability partnership, or any other entity where at least 75 percent of the interest in such entity, at each tier of ownership of such entity and in the aggregate, is owned and controlled by citizens of the United States.

(4) Application to transfer a charter halibut permit. To be complete, a charter halibut permit transfer application must have notarized and dated signatures of the applicants, and the applicants must attest that, to the best of the applicants' knowledge, all statements in the application are true. An application to transfer a charter halibut permit will be made available by NMFS. Completed transfer applications may be submitted by mail or hand delivery at any time to the addresses listed on the application. Electronic or facsimile deliveries will not be accepted.

(5) Denied transfer applications. If NMFS does not approve a charter halibut permit transfer application, NMFS will inform the applicant of the basis for its disapproval.

(6) Transfer due to court order, operation of law or as part of a security agreement. NMFS will transfer a charter halibut permit based on a court order, operation of law or a security agreement, if NMFS determines that a transfer application is complete and the transfer will not violate an eligibility criterion for transfers.

(j) Charter halibut permit limitations -

(1) General. A person may not own, hold, or control more than five (5) charter halibut permits except as provided by paragraph (j)(4) of this section. NMFS will not approve a transfer application that would result in the applicant that would receive the transferred permit holding more than five (5) charter halibut permits except as provided by paragraph (j)(6) of this section.

(2) Ten percent ownership criterion. In determining whether two or more persons are the same person for purposes of paragraph (j)(1) of this section, NMFS will apply the definition of an “affiliation for the purpose of defining AFA entities” at § 679.2 of this title.

(3) A permit will cease to be a valid permit if the permit holder is:

(i) An individual and the individual dies; or

(ii) A non-individual (e.g., corporation or partnership) and dissolves or changes as defined at paragraph (j)(5) of this section.

(iii) A transferable permit may be made valid by transfer to an eligible recipient.

(4) Exception for initial recipients of permits. Notwithstanding the limitation at paragraph (j)(1) of this section, NMFS may issue more than five (5) charter halibut permits to an initial recipient that meets the requirements described in paragraphs (b), (d), and (e) of this section for more than five (5) charter halibut permits, subject to the following limitations:

(i) This exception applies only to an initial recipient as the recipient exists at the time that it is initially issued the permits;

(ii) If an initial recipient of transferable permit(s) who is an individual dies, the individual's successor-in-interest may not hold more than five (5) charter halibut permits;

(iii) If an initial recipient permit holder that is a non-individual, such as a corporation or a partnership, dissolves or changes, NMFS will consider the new entity a new permit holder and the new permit holder may not hold more than five (5) charter halibut permits.

(5) For purposes of this paragraph (j), a “change” means:

(i) For an individual, the individual has died, in which case NMFS must be notified within 30 days of the individual's death; and

(ii) For a non-individual entity, the same as defined at § 679.42(j)(4)(i) of this title, in which case the permit holder must notify NMFS within 15 days of the effective date of the change as required at § 679.42(j)(5) of this title.

(6) Exception for transfer of permits. Notwithstanding the limitation at paragraph (j)(1) of this section, NMFS may approve a permit transfer application that would result in the person that would receive the transferred permit(s) holding more than five (5) transferable charter halibut permits if the parties to the transfer meet the following conditions:

(i) The designated person that would receive the transferred permits does not hold any charter halibut permits;

(ii) All permits that would be transferred are transferable permits;

(iii) The permits that would be transferred are all of the transferable permits that were awarded to an initial recipient who exceeded the permit limitation of five (5) permits; and

(iv) The person transferring its permits also is transferring its entire charter vessel fishing business, including all the assets of that business, to the designated person that would receive the transferred permits.

(k) Community charter halibut permit -

(1) General. A Community Quota Entity (CQE), as defined in § 679.2 of this title, representing an eligible community listed in paragraph (k)(2) of this section, may receive one or more community charter halibut permits. A community charter halibut permit issued to a CQE will be designated for area 2C or area 3A, will be non-transferable, and will have an angler endorsement of six (6).

(2) Eligible communities. Each community charter halibut permit issued to a CQE under paragraph (k)(1) of this section will specify the name of an eligible community on the permit. Only the following communities are eligible to receive community charter halibut permits:

(i) For Area 2C: Angoon, Coffman Cove, Edna Bay, Game Creek, Hollis, Hoonah, Hydaburg, Kake, Kasaan, Klawock, Metlakatla, Meyers Chuck, Naukati Bay, Pelican, Point Baker, Port Alexander, Port Protection, Tenakee, Thorne Bay, Whale Pass.

(ii) For Area 3A: Akhiok, Chenega Bay, Halibut Cove, Karluk, Larsen Bay, Nanwalek, Old Harbor, Ouzinkie, Port Graham, Port Lyons, Seldovia, Tatitlek, Tyonek, Yakutat.

(3) Limitations. The maximum number of community charter halibut permits that may be issued to a CQE for each eligible community the CQE represents is as follows:

(i) A CQE representing an eligible community or communities in regulatory area 2C may receive a maximum of four (4) community charter halibut permits per eligible community designated for Area 2C.

(ii) A CQE representing an eligible community or communities in regulatory area 3A may receive a maximum of seven (7) community charter halibut permits per eligible community designated for Area 3A.

(4) NMFS will not approve a transfer that will cause a CQE representing a community or communities to hold more than the total number of permits described in paragraphs (k)(4)(i) and (k)(4)(ii) of this section, per community, including community charter halibut permits granted to the CQE under this paragraph (k) and any charter halibut permits acquired by the CQE by transfer under paragraph (i) of this section.

(i) The maximum number of charter halibut and community charter halibut permits that may be held by a CQE per community represented by the CQE in regulatory area 2C is eight (8).

(ii) The maximum number of charter halibut and community charter halibut permits that may be held by a CQE per community represented by the CQE in regulatory area 3A is fourteen (14).

(5) Limitation on use of permits. The following limitations apply to community charter halibut permits issued to a CQE under paragraph (k)(1) of this section.

(i) Every charter vessel fishing trip authorized by such a permit and on which halibut are caught and retained must begin or end at a location(s) specified on the application for a community charter halibut permit and that is within the boundaries of the eligible community designated on the permit. The geographic boundaries of the eligible community will be those defined by the United States Census Bureau.

(ii) Community charter halibut permits may be used only within the regulatory area for which they are designated to catch and retain halibut.

(6) Application procedure. To be complete, a community charter halibut permit application must be signed and dated by the applicant, and the applicant must attest that, to the best of the applicants' knowledge, all statements in the application are true and complete. An application for a community charter halibut permit will be made available by NMFS and may be submitted by mail, hand delivery, or facsimile at any time to the address(s) listed on the application. Electronic deliveries other than facsimile will not be accepted.

(7) An annual report on the use of charter halibut permits must be submitted by the CQE as required at § 679.5(t) of this title.

(l) Military charter halibut permit. NMFS will issue a military charter halibut permit without an angler endorsement to an applicant provided that the applicant is a Morale, Welfare and Recreation Program of the United States Armed Services.

(1) Limitations. A military charter halibut permit is non-transferable and may be used only in the regulatory area (2C or 3A) designated on the permit.

(2) Application procedure. An applicant may apply for a military charter halibut permit at any time. To be complete, a military charter halibut permit application must be signed and dated by the applicant, and the applicant must attest that, to the best of the applicants' knowledge, all statements in the application are true and complete. An application for a military charter halibut permit will be made available by NMFS and may be submitted by mail, hand delivery, or facsimile at any time to the address(s) listed on the application. Electronic deliveries other than facsimile will not be accepted.

[75 FR 600, Jan. 5, 2010, as amended at 75 FR 56909, Sept. 17, 2010; 78 FR 33650, June 4, 2013; 78 FR 75890, Dec. 12, 2013; 80 FR 35207, June 19, 2015; 84 FR 64026, Nov. 20, 2019]

Figure 1 to Subpart E of Part 300 - Sitka Local Area Management Plan
Figure 2 to Subpart E of Part 300 - Southern Southeast Alaska Rural and Non-Rural Areas

[74 FR 57110, Nov. 4, 2009]

Figure 3 to Subpart E of Part 300 - Northern Southeast Alaska Rural and Non-Rural Areas

[74 FR 57110, Nov. 4, 2009]

Figure 4 to Subpart E of Part 300 - Prince William Sound Rural and Non-Rural Areas

[74 FR 57110, Nov. 4, 2009]

Figure 5 to Subpart E of Part 300 - Anchorage, Matanuska-Susitna, and Kenai Rural and Non-Rural Areas

[74 FR 57110, Nov. 4, 2009]

Figure 6 to Subpart E of Part 300 - Alaska Peninsula and Aleutian Islands Rural and Non-Rural Areas

[74 FR 57110, Nov. 4, 2009]

Figure 7 to Subpart E of Part 300 - Western and Central Alaska Rural and Non-Rural Areas

[74 FR 57110, Nov. 4, 2009]

Table 1 to Subpart E of Part 300 - Determination of Commission Regulatory Area 2C Annual Commercial Allocation From the Annual Combined Catch Limit for Halibut
If the area 2C annual combined catch limit (CCL) in net pounds is: then the area 2C annual commercial allocation is:
<5,000,000 lb 81.7% of the Area 2C CCL.
≥5,000,000 and ≤5,755,000 lb the Area 2C CCL minus a fixed 915,000-lb allocation to the charter halibut fishery.
>5,755,000 lb 84.1% of the Area 2C CCL.

[78 FR 75890, Dec. 12, 2013]

Table 2 to Subpart E of Part 300 - Determination of Commission Regulatory Area 3A Annual Commercial Allocation From the Annual Combined Catch Limit for Halibut
If the area 3A annual combined catch limit (CCL) in net pounds is: then the area 3A annual commercial allocation is:
<10,000,000 lb 81.1% of the Area 3A CCL.
≥10,000,000 and ≤10,800,000 lb the Area 3A CCL minus a fixed 1,890,000-lb allocation to the charter halibut fishery.
>10,800,000 and ≤20,000,000 lb 82.5% of the Area 3A CCL.
>20,000,000 and ≤25,000,000 lb the Area 3A CCL minus a fixed 3,500,000-lb allocation to the charter halibut fishery.
>25,000,000 lb 86.0% of the Area 3A CCL.

[78 FR 75890, Dec. 12, 2013]

Table 3 to Subpart E of Part 300 - Determination of Commission Regulatory Area 2C Annual Charter Halibut Allocation From the Annual Combined Catch Limit
If the area 2C annual combined catch limit for halibut in net pounds is: then the area 2C annual charter allocation is:
<5,000,000 lb 18.3% of the Area 2C CCL.
≥5,000,000 and ≤5,755,000 lb 915,000 lb.
>5,755,000 lb 15.9% of the Area 2C CCL.

[78 FR 75890, Dec. 12, 2013]

Table 4 to Subpart E of Part 300 - Determination of Commission Regulatory Area 3A Annual Charter Halibut Allocation From the Annual Combined Catch Limit
If the area 3A annual combined catch limit (CCL) for halibut in net pounds is: then the area 3A annual charter allocation is:
<10,000,000 lb 18.9% of the Area 3A annual combined catch limit.
≥10,000,000 and ≤10,800,000 lb 1,890,000 lb.
>10,800,000 and ≤20,000,000 lb 17.5% of the Area 3A annual combined catch limit.
>20,000,000 and ≤25,000,000 lb 3,500,000 lb.
>25,000,000 lb 14.0% of the Area 3A annual combined catch limit.

[78 FR 75890, Dec. 12, 2013]

Subpart F - Fraser River Sockeye and Pink Salmon Fisheries
Authority:

Pacific Salmon Treaty Act, 16 U.S.C. 3636(b).

§ 300.90 Purpose and scope.

This subpart implements the Pacific Salmon Treaty Act of 1985 (16 U.S.C. 3631-3644) (Act) and is intended to supplement, not conflict with, the fishery regimes and Fraser River Panel regulations adopted under the Treaty between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of Canada Concerning Pacific Salmon, signed at Ottawa, January 28, 1985 (Treaty).

§ 300.91 Definitions.

In addition to the terms defined in § 300.2 and those in the Act and the Treaty, the terms used in this subpart have the following meanings. If a term is defined differently in § 300.2, the Act, or the Treaty, the definition in this section shall apply.

All-citizen means any person who is not a treaty Indian fishing in that treaty Indian's tribal treaty fishing places pursuant to treaty Indian tribal fishing regulations (whether in compliance with such regulations or not).

Authorized officer means, in addition to those individuals identified under authorized officer at § 300.2, any state, Federal, or other officer as may be authorized by the Secretary in writing, including any treaty Indian tribal enforcement officer authorized to enforce tribal fishing regulations.

Commission means the Pacific Salmon Commission established by the Pacific Salmon Treaty.

Consistent regulation or consistent order means any Federal, state, or treaty Indian tribal regulation or order that is in addition to and not in conflict with (at least as restrictive as) any regime of the Commission, Fraser River Panel regulation, inseason order of the Secretary, or these regulations.

Fishing gear -

(1) Gill net means a fishing net of single web construction, not anchored, tied, staked, placed, or weighted in such a manner that it cannot drift.

(2) Purse seine means all types of fishing gear consisting of a lead line, cork line, auxiliary lines, purse line and purse rings and of mesh net webbing fashioned in such a manner that it is used to encircle fish, and in addition prevent their escape under the bottom or lead line of the net by drawing in the bottom of the net by means of the purse line so that it forms a closed bag.

(3) Reef net means a non-self-fishing open bunt square or rectangular section of mesh netting suspended between two anchored boats fashioned in such a manner that to impound salmon passing over the net, the net must be raised to the surface.

(4) Troll fishing gear means one or more lines that drag hooks with bait or lures behind a moving fishing vessel.

(5) Treaty Indian fishing gear means fishing gear defined authorized, and identified under treaty Indian tribal laws and regulations in accordance with the requirements of Final Decision No. 1 and subsequent orders in United States v. Washington, 384 F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash., 1974).

Fraser River Panel means the Fraser River Panel established by the Pacific Salmon Treaty.

Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) means the United States' portion of the Fraser River Panel Area specified in Annex II of the Treaty as follows:

(1) The territorial water and the high seas westward from the western coast of Canada and the United States of America and from a direct line drawn from Bonilla Point, Vancouver Island, to the lighthouse of Tatoosh Island, Washington - which line marks the entrance of Juan de Fuca Strait - and embraced between 48° and 49° N. lat., excepting therefrom, however, all the waters of Barkley Sound, eastward of a straight line drawn from Amphitrite Point to Cape Beale and all the waters of Nitinat Lake and the entrance thereto.

(2) The waters included within the following boundaries: Beginning at Bonilla Point, Vancouver Island, thence along the aforesaid direct line drawn from Bonilla Point to Tatoosh Lighthouse, Washington, described in paragraph (1) of this definition, thence to the nearest point of Cape Flattery, thence following the southerly shore of Juan de Fuca Strait to Point Wilson, on Whidbey Island, thence following the western shore of the said Whidbey Island, to the entrance to Deception Pass, thence across said entrance to the southern side of Reservation Bay, on Fidalgo Island, thence following the western and northern shore line of the said Fidalgo Island to Swinomish Slough, crossing the said Swinomish Slough, in line with the track of the Great Northern Railway (Burlington Northern Railroad), thence northerly following the shoreline of the mainland to Atkinson Point at the northerly entrance to Burrard Inlet, British Columbia, thence in a straight line to the southern end of Bowen Island, then westerly following the southern shore of Bowen Island to Cape Roger Curtis, thence in a straight line to Gower Point, thence westerly following the shoreline to Welcome Point on Sechelt Peninsula, thence in a straight line to Point Young on Lasqueti Island, thence in a straight line to Dorcas Point on Vancouver Island, thence following the eastern and southern shores of the said Vancouver Island, to the starting point at Bonilla Point, as shown on the British Admiralty Chart Number 579, and on the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey Chart Number 6300, as corrected to March 14, 1930, copies of which are annexed to the 1930 Convention between Canada and the United States of America for Protection, Preservation, and Extension of the Sockeye Salmon Fishery in the Fraser River System as amended, signed May 26, 1930. [Note: U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey Chart Number 6300 has been replaced and updated by NOAA Chart Number 18400.]

(3) The Fraser River and the streams and lakes tributary thereto.

(4) The Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) includes Puget Sound Management and Catch Reporting Areas 4B, 5, 6, 6A, 6B, 6C, 6D, 7, 7A, 7B, 7C, 7D, and 7E as defined in the Washington State Administrative Code at Chapter 220-22 as of June 27, 1986.

Fraser River Panel regulations means regulations applicable to the Fraser River Panel Area that are recommended by the Commission (on the basis of proposals made by the Fraser River Panel) and approved by the Secretary of State.

Mesh size means the distance between the inside of one knot to the outside of the opposite (vertical) knot in one mesh of a net.

Pink salmon means Oncorhynchus gorbuscha.

Sockeye salmon means the anadromous form of Oncorhynchus nerka.

Treaty fishing places (of an Indian tribe) means locations within the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) as determined in or in accordance with Final Decision No. 1 and subsequent orders in United States v. Washington, 384 F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash. 1974), to be places at which that treaty Indian tribe may take fish under rights secured by treaty with the United States.

Treaty Indian means any member of a treaty Indian tribe whose treaty fishing place is in the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) or any assistant to a treaty Indian authorized to assist in accordance with § 300.95(d).

Treaty Indian tribe means any of the federally recognized Indian tribes of the State of Washington having fishing rights secured by treaty with the United States to fish for salmon stocks subject to the Pacific Salmon Treaty in treaty fishing places within the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.). Currently these tribes are the Makah, Tribe, Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe, Port Gamble Klallam Tribe, Jamestown Klallam Tribe, Suquamish Tribe, Lummi Tribe, Nooksack Tribe, the Swinomish Indian Tribal Community, and the Tulalip Tribe.

§ 300.92 Relation to other laws.

(a) Insofar as they are consistent with this part, any other applicable Federal law or regulation, or any applicable law and regulations of the State of Washington or of a treaty Indian tribe with treaty fishing rights in the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) will continue to have force and effect in the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) with respect to fishing activities addressed herein.

(b) Any person fishing subject to this subpart is bound by the international boundaries now recognized by the United States within the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) described in § 300.91, notwithstanding any dispute or negotiation between the United States and Canada regarding their respective jurisdictions, until such time as different boundaries are published by the United States.

(c) Any person fishing in the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) who also fishes for groundfish in the EEZ should consult Federal regulations at part 663 of this title for applicable requirements, including the requirement that vessels engaged in commercial fishing for groundfish (except commercial passenger vessels) have vessel identification in accordance with § 663.6. Federal regulations governing salmon fishing in the EEZ, which includes a portion of the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.), are at part 661 of this title. Annual regulatory modifications are published in the Federal Register.

(d) Except as otherwise provided in this subpart, general provisions governing off-reservation fishing by treaty Indians are found at 25 CFR part 249, subpart A. Additional general and specific provisions governing treaty Indian fisheries are found in regulations and laws promulgated by each treaty Indian tribe for fishermen fishing pursuant to tribal authorization.

(e) Nothing in this subpart relieves a person from any other applicable requirements lawfully imposed by the United States, the State of Washington, or a treaty Indian tribe.

§ 300.93 Reporting requirements.

Any person fishing for sockeye or pink salmon within the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) and any person receiving or purchasing fish caught by such persons are subject to State of Washington reporting requirements at Washington Administrative Code, Chapter 220-69. Treaty Indian fishermen are subject also to tribal reporting requirements. No separate Federal reports are required.

§ 300.94 Prohibitions and restrictions.

In addition to the prohibitions in § 300.4, the following prohibitions and restrictions apply.

(a) In addition to the prohibited acts set forth in the Act at 16 U.S.C. 3637(a), the following restrictions apply to sockeye and pink salmon fishing in the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.):

(1) The Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) is closed to sockeye and pink salmon fishing, unless opened by Fraser River Panel regulations or by inseason orders of the Secretary issued under § 300.97 that give effect to orders of the Fraser River Panel, unless such orders are determined not to be consistent with domestic legal obligations. Such regulations and inseason orders may be further implemented by regulations promulgated by the United States, the State of Washington, or any treaty Indian tribe, which are also consistent with domestic legal obligations.

(2) It is unlawful for any person or fishing vessel subject to the jurisdiction of the United States to fish for, or take and retain, any sockeye or pink salmon:

(i) Except during times or in areas that are opened by Fraser River Panel regulations or by inseason order, except that this provision will not prohibit the direct transport of legally caught sockeye or pink salmon to offloading areas.

(ii) By means of gear or methods not authorized by Fraser River Panel regulations, inseason orders, or other applicable Federal, state, or treaty Indian tribal law.

(iii) In violation of any applicable area, season, species, zone, gear, or mesh size restriction.

(b) It is unlawful for any person or fishing vessel subject to the jurisdiction of the United States to -

(1) Remove the head of any sockeye or pink salmon caught in the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.), or possess a salmon with the head removed, if that salmon has been marked by removal of the adipose fin to indicate that a coded wire tag has been implanted in the head of the fish.

(2) Fail to permit an authorized officer to inspect a record or report required by the State of Washington or treaty Indian tribal authority.

(c) Notwithstanding paragraph (a) of this section, nothing in this subpart will be construed to prohibit the retention of sockeye or pink salmon caught by any person while lawfully engaged in a fishery for subsistence or ceremonial purposes pursuant to treaty Indian tribal regulations, for recreational purposes pursuant to recreational fishing regulations promulgated by the State of Washington, or as otherwise authorized by treaty Indian tribal or State of Washington law or regulation, provided that such treaty Indian tribal or State regulation is consistent with U.S.-approved Commission fishery regimes, Fraser River Panel regulations, or inseason orders of the Secretary applicable to fishing in the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.).

(d) The following types of fishing gear are authorized, subject to the restrictions set forth in this subpart and according to the times and areas established by Fraser River Panel regulations or inseason orders of the Secretary:

(1) All citizens: Gill net, purse seine, reef net, and troll fishing gear. Specific restrictions on all citizens gear are contained in the Washington State Administrative Code of Chapter 220-47.

(2) Treaty Indians: Treaty Indian fishing gear.

(e) Geographic descriptions of Puget Sound Salmon Management and Catch Reporting Areas, which are referenced in the Commission's regimes, Fraser River Panel regulations, and in inseason orders of the Secretary, are found in the Washington State Administrative Code at Chapter 220-22.

§ 300.95 Treaty Indian fisheries.

(a) Any treaty Indian must comply with this section when fishing for sockeye and pink salmon at the treaty Indian tribe's treaty fishing places in the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.) during the time the Commission or the Secretary exercises jurisdiction over these fisheries. Fishing by a treaty Indian outside the applicable Indian tribe's treaty fishing places will be subject to the Fraser River Panel regulations and inseason orders applicable to all citizens, as well as to the restrictions set forth in this section.

(b) Nothing in this section will relieve a treaty Indian from any applicable law or regulation imposed by a treaty Indian tribe, or from requirements lawfully imposed by the United States or the State of Washington in accordance with the requirements of Final Decision No. 1 and subsequent orders in United States v. Washington, 384 F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash., 1974).

(c) Identification.

(1) Any treaty Indian fishing under the authority of this subpart must have in his or her possession at all times while fishing or engaged in any activity related to fishing the treaty Indian identification required by 25 CFR 249.3 or by applicable tribal law.

(2) Any person assisting a treaty Indian under the authority of paragraph (d) of this section must have in his or her possession at all such times a valid identification card issued by the Bureau of Indian Affairs or by a treaty Indian tribe, identifying the holder as a person qualified to assist a treaty Indian. The identification card must include the name of the issuing tribe, the name, address, date of birth, and photograph of the assistant, and the name and identification number of the treaty Indian whom the assistant is authorized to assist.

(3) Identification described in paragraph (c) (1) or (2) of this section must be shown on demand to an authorized officer by the treaty Indian or authorized assistant.

(4) Any treaty Indian fishing under this subpart must comply with the treaty Indian vessel and gear identification requirements of Final Decision No. 1 and subsequent orders in United States v. Washington, 384 F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash., 1974).

(d) Fishing assistance.

(1) Any member of a treaty Indian tribe fishing under this subpart may, if authorized by the treaty Indian's tribe, receive fishing assistance from, and only from, the treaty Indian tribal member's spouse, forebears, children, grandchildren, and siblings, as authorized by the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington in United States v. Washington, 384 F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash., 1974). For purposes of this section, the treaty Indian tribal member whom the assistant is authorized to assist must be present aboard the fishing vessel at all times while engaged in the exercise of treaty Indian fishing rights subject to this subpart.

(2) No treaty Indian may, while fishing at a treaty fishing place in accordance with treaty-secured fishing rights, permit any person 16 years of age or older other than the authorized holder of a currently valid identification card issued in accordance with the requirements of paragraphs (c) (1) and (2) of this section to fish for said treaty Indian, assist said treaty Indian in fishing, or use any gear or fishing location identified as said treaty Indian's gear or location.

(3) Treaty Indians are prohibited from participating in a treaty Indian fishery under this section at any time persons who are not treaty Indians are aboard the fishing vessel or in contact with fishing gear operated from the fishing vessel, unless such persons are authorized employees or officers of a treaty Indian tribe or tribal fisheries management organization, the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission, the Commission, or a fisheries management agency of the United States or the State of Washington.

§ 300.96 Penalties.

Any treaty Indian who commits any act that is unlawful under this subpart normally will be referred to the applicable tribe for prosecution and punishment. If such tribe fails to prosecute such persons in a diligent manner for the offense(s) referred to the tribe, or if other good cause exists, such treaty Indian may be subject to the penalties and procedures described in the Magnuson-Stevens Act.

§ 300.97 Inseason orders.

(a) During the fishing season, the Secretary may issue orders that establish fishing times and areas consistent with the annual Commission regime and inseason orders of the Fraser River Panel. Inseason orders will be consistent with domestic legal obligations. Violation of such inseason orders is violation of this subpart.

(b) Notice of inseason orders.

(1) Official notice of such inseason orders is available from NMFS (for orders applicable to all-citizen fisheries) and from the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission (for orders applicable to treaty Indian fisheries) through Area Code 206 toll-free telephone hotlines. All-citizen fisheries: the hotline telephone number is published in the inseason notice procedures section of the annual management measures for West Coast Salmon Fisheries, published in the Federal Register; Treaty Indian fisheries hotline: 1-800-562-6142.

(2) Notice of inseason orders of the Secretary and other applicable tribal regulations may be published and released according to tribal procedures in accordance with Final Decision No. 1 and subsequent orders in United States v. Washington, 384 F. Supp. 312 (W.D. Wash., 1974).

(3) Inseason orders may also be communicated through news releases to radio and television stations and newspapers in the Fraser River Panel Area (U.S.).

(4) Inseason orders of the Secretary will also be published in the Federal Register as soon as practicable after they are issued.

[61 FR 35550, July 5, 1996, as amended at 74 FR 44771, Aug. 31, 2009]

Subpart G - Antarctic Marine Living Resources
Authority:

16 U.S.C. 2431 et seq., 31 U.S.C. 9701 et seq.

Source:

82 FR 6223, Jan. 19, 2017, unless otherwise noted.

§ 300.100 Purpose and scope.

(a) This subpart implements the Antarctic Marine Living Resources Convention Act of 1984 (AMLRCA or Act), 16 U.S.C. 2431 et seq.

(b) This subpart regulates -

(1) The harvesting of Antarctic marine living resources and other associated activities by any person subject to the jurisdiction of the United States or by any vessel of the United States.

(2) The import, export, and re-export into the United States of any Antarctic marine living resource.

§ 300.101 Definitions.

In addition to the terms defined in § 300.2, in the Act, and in the Convention on the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources, done at Canberra, Australia, May 7, 1980 (Convention) the terms used in this subpart have the following meanings for purposes of this subpart. If a term is defined differently in § 300.2, than in the Act, or Convention, the definition in this section shall apply.

ACA means the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (16 U.S.C. 2401, et seq.).

Annual or biennial measure means a conservation measure that:

(1) Applies to the operation of the Convention's commercial or exploratory fisheries such as gear, catch, and effort restrictions and time and area closures;

(2) Generally expires after one or two fishing season(s); and

(3) Does not require the development of policy options or a regulatory framework.

Antarctic convergence means a line joining the following points along the parallels of latitude and meridians of longitude:

Lat. Long.
50° S 0.
50° S 30° E.
45° S 30° E.
45° S 80° E.
55° S 80° E.
55° S 150° E.
60° S 150° E.
60° S 50° W.
50° S 50° W.
50° S 0.

Antarctic marine living resources or AMLR(s) means:

(1) The populations of finfish, mollusks, crustaceans, and all other species of living organisms, including birds, found south of the Antarctic Convergence;

(2) All parts or products of those populations and species set forth in paragraph (1) of this definition.

Centralized Vessel Monitoring System (C-VMS) means the system operated by the Secretariat of CCAMLR that receives reports of positional and other information from satellite-linked mobile transceiver units located on vessels that are submitted to the CCAMLR Secretariat, either directly from the vessel or through the relevant flag State.

Commission or CCAMLR means the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources established under Article VII of the Convention.

Convention Area means all waters south of the Antarctic Convergence.

Dealer means a person who imports AMLRs into, or exports or re-exports AMLRs from, the United States.

Dissostichus catch document (DCD) is a document generated through CCAMLR's electronic catch documentation scheme (CDS), containing information relating to the harvest, landing, and transshipment of Dissostichus species.

Dissostichus export document (DED) is a document generated through the CCAMLR's electronic CDS, containing information relating to the export of Dissostichus spp.

Dissostichus re-export document (DRED) is a document generated through CCAMLR's electronic CDS, containing information relating to the re-export of Dissostichus spp.

Dissostichus species or Dissostichus spp. means Patagonian toothfish and Antarctic toothfish, and any parts or products therefrom.

Enhanced mobile transceiver unit or EMTU means a transceiver or communication device, including all hardware and software, carried and operated on a vessel as part of a vessel monitoring system.

Export means any movement of fish or fish product from a territory under the control of the State or free trade zone of landing, or, where that State or free trade zone forms part of a customs union, any other Member State of that customs union.

First receiver means the person who first receives AMLRs landed from a vessel licensed under 50 CFR 300.107 at a U.S. port.

Fish means finfish, mollusks, and crustaceans.

Fishery means:

(1) One or more stocks of fish that are treated as a unit for purposes of conservation and management and that are identified on the basis of geographical, scientific, technical, recreational, and economic characteristics.

(2) Any fishing for such stocks.

Harvesting vessel means any vessel of the United States (including any boat, ship, or other craft), that is used for, equipped to be used for, or of a type that is normally used for harvesting.

Import means the physical entering or bringing of a fish or fish product into any part of the geographical territory under the control of a State, except where the catch is landed or transshipped within the definitions of landing or transshipment.

Individual permit means a National Science Foundation (NSF) permit issued under 45 CFR part 670; or an NSF award letter (demonstrating that the individual has received an award from NSF to do research in the Antarctic); or a marine mammal permit issued under § 216.31 of this chapter; or an endangered species permit issued under § 222.21 of this chapter.

Inspection vessel means a vessel carrying a CCAMLR inspector and displaying the pennant approved by CCAMLR to identify such vessel.

International observer means a scientific observer operating in accordance with the CCAMLR Scheme of International Scientific Observation and the terms of a bilateral arrangement concluded between the United States and another member of CCAMLR for the placement of a U.S. national onboard a vessel flagged by another member of CCAMLR or for the placement of the national of another member of CCAMLR onboard a vessel of the United States.

Land or Landing means to begin offloading any fish, to arrive in port with the intention of offloading any fish, or to cause any fish to be offloaded. However, for purposes of catch documentation as provided for in § 300.106, land or landing means the initial unloading or transfer of Dissostichus spp. in any form from a vessel to dockside even if such fish are subsequently transferred to a container or to another vessel in a port or free trade zone.

National observer means a U.S. national placed and operating onboard a vessel of the United States as a scientific observer in accordance with § 300.111.

National Seafood Inspection Laboratory means the NMFS laboratory located at 3209 Frederic Street, Pascagoula, MS 39567, telephone (228) 769-8964, email .

Office of Law Enforcement (OLE) refers to the NOAA Office of Law Enforcement.

Port-to-port means from the time the vessel leaves port to the time that the vessel returns to port and at all points in between.

Real-time means as soon as possible, but at least every hour with no more than a 1-hour delay.

Recreational fishing means fishing with hook and line for personal use and not for sale.

Re-export means any movement of a fish or fish product from a territory under the control of a State, free trade zone, or Member State of a customs union of import unless that State, free trade zone, or any Member State of that customs union is the first place of landing, in which case the movement is an export within the definition of export.

Seal excluder device means a barrier within the body of a trawl comprised of a metal frame, nylon mesh, or any material that results in an obstruction to seals between the mouth opening and the cod end of the trawl. The body of the trawl net forward of the barrier must include an escape opening through which seals entering the trawl can escape.

Specially Validated Dissostichus Catch Document (SVDCD) means a Dissostichus catch document that has been specially issued by a State to accompany seized or confiscated Dissostichus spp. offered for sale or otherwise disposed of by the State.

Transship or transshipment means the transfer of fish or fish products, other AMLRs, or any other goods or materials directly from one vessel to another. However, for purposes of catch documentation as provided for in § 300.106, transship or transshipment means the transfer of Dissostichus spp. that has not been previously landed, from one vessel directly to another, either at sea or in port.

Vessel Monitoring System (VMS) means a system that uses satellite-linked EMTUs installed on vessels to allow a flag State or other entity to receive automatic transmission of positional and other information related to vessel activity.

§ 300.102 Relationship to other treaties, conventions, laws, and regulations.

(a) Other conventions and treaties to which the United States is a party and other Federal statutes and implementing regulations may impose additional restrictions on the harvesting and importation into the United States of AMLRs.

(b) The ACA implements the Antarctic Treaty Agreed Measures for the Conservation of Antarctic Fauna and Flora (12 U.S.T. 794). The ACA and its implementing regulations (45 CFR part 670) apply to certain defined activities of U.S. citizens south of 60° S. lat.

(c) The Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972 (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.), the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.), the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (16 U.S.C. 701 et seq.), and their implementing regulations also apply to the harvesting and importation of AMLRs.

(d) Rule making exceptions. When implementing conservation measures adopted and notified by CCAMLR, NMFS may apply the following exceptions to Administrative Procedure Act (APA) rulemaking requirements at 5 U.S.C. 553(b)-(d):

(1) The foreign affairs function exception of the APA, 5 U.S.C. 553(a)(1); or

(2) The exception under subsection 307(b) of AMLRCA, 16 U.S.C. 2436(b), that provides that, notwithstanding 5 U.S.C. 553(b)-(d), NMFS may publish in the Federal Register a final regulation to implement any CCAMLR-adopted conservation measure -

(i) That has been in effect for 12 months or less, beginning on the date that the Commission notifies the United States of the conservation measure under Article IX of the Convention; and

(ii) With respect to which the Secretary of State does not notify the Commission in accordance with section 305(a)(1) of AMLRCA within the time period allotted for objections under Article IX of the Convention.

(e) Annual or biennial measures. NMFS may implement annual or biennial measures adopted by CCAMLR as conditions to vessel permits issued under section 300.107, instead of through rulemaking.

§ 300.103 Scientific research.

(a) This section applies to any person, using a vessel for research purposes, who intends to catch more than 1 tonne of finfish or krill or use gear other than longline, trawl, or pot to catch Dissostichus spp.

(b) Any person planning to use a vessel for research purposes, when the estimated research catch is expected to be less than 50 tonnes of finfish in a season, and no more than the amounts specified in Table 1, must notify the Assistant Administrator at least 2 months in advance of the planned research using the CCAMLR Format for Notification of Research Vessel Activity, Format 1. A copy of the format is available from NMFS Headquarters. The format requires:

(1) Name and registration number of vessel;

(2) Division and subarea in which research is to be carried out;

(3) Estimated dates of entering and leaving the Convention Area;

(4) Purposes of research; and

(5) Fishing equipment to be used (bottom trawl, midwater trawl, longline, crab pots, other).

Table 1 - Taxa-Specific Thresholds for Notification of Research Vessel Activity

Taxon Gear type Expected catch
Thresholds for finfish taxa:
Dissostichus spp Longline 5 tonnes.
Trawl 5 tonnes.
Pot 5 tonnes.
Other 0 tonnes.
Champsocephalus gunnari All 10 tonnes.
Thresholds for non-finfish taxa:
Krill All 0.1 percent of the catch limit for a given area.
Squid
Crabs

(c) Any person planning to use any vessel for research purposes, when the estimated research catch is expected to be more than 50 tonnes or greater than the amounts specified in Table 1 must report the details of the research plan to NMFS using CCAMLR Format 2 for Notification of Research Vessel Activity. The format must be submitted to Assistant Administrator at least 7 months in advance of the planned start date for the research. A copy of the format is available from NMFS Headquarters. The format requires:

(1) Description of the main objective of the research;

(2) Description of the fishery operations;

(3) Description of the survey design, data collection, and analysis;

(4) Proposed catch limit;

(5) Description of the research capability; and

(6) Description of the reporting for evaluation and review.

(d) Where the expected catch is more than 50 tonnes of fish or greater than the amounts specified in Table 1, the planned fishing for research purposes shall not proceed until the Assistant Administrator authorizes the person in writing that he or she may proceed. Such authorization may be provided after completion of review of the scientific research plan by the CCAMLR Scientific Committee and Commission.

(e) A summary of the results of any research subject to these provisions must be provided to the Assistant Administrator within 150 days of the completion of the research and a full report must be provided within 11 months.

(f) Catch, effort, and biological data resulting from the research must be reported using the reporting format for research vessels in accordance with relevant conservation measures, with a copy to NMFS Headquarters.

§ 300.104 International Fisheries Trade Permits and AMLR first receiver permits.

(a) General.

(1) A person may import, export, or re-export AMLR into the United States only under a NMFS-issued International Fisheries Trade Permit (IFTP). For AMLRs to be released for entry into the United States, the product must be accompanied by a vessel permit, individual permit, AMLR first receiver permit, or IFTP.

(2) All shipments of Dissostichus spp. must also be accompanied by accurate, complete and valid CDS documentation (including all required validations and DEDs/DREDs) as described in § 300.106, and, in the case of shipments of frozen Dissostichus species, a preapproval certificate issued under § 300.105, as well as verifiable information that the harvesting vessel was reporting to C-VMS from port-to-port, regardless of where the fish were harvested. For purposes of entry of Dissostichus spp. into the United States, NMFS will only accept electronic CDS documents described in § 300.106.

(3) Imports of fresh or frozen Dissostichus spp. accompanied by an SVDCD are prohibited.

(b) International Fisheries Trade Permit. A person intending to import, export, or re-export AMLR must possess a valid IFTP issued under § 300.322 and file required data sets electronically with Customs and Border Protection (CBP) at the time, or in advance, of importation, exportation or re-exportation. “Required data set” has the same meaning as § 300.321 (see definition of “Documentation and data sets required”). See § 300.322 for IFTP application procedures and permit regulations. The IFTP holder may only conduct those specific activities stipulated by the IFTP.

(c) AMLR First Receiver Permits -

(1) General. First receivers of AMLR catch landed from a vessel permitted under § 300.107 at a U.S. port of landing must possess an AMLR first receiver permit and may only conduct those activities described in the permit. A person issued, or required to have been issued a first receiver permit under this subpart may only receive fish from a U.S. vessel that has a valid vessel permit issued under § 300.107 as well as a valid High Seas Fishing Permit issued under 50 CFR part 300, subpart R.

(2) Application. Applications for the AMLR first receiver permit are available from NMFS Headquarters.

(3) Issuance. NMFS may issue an AMLR first receiver permit if the permit application is complete and NMFS determines that the activity proposed by the first receiver meets the requirements of the Act. First receivers of AMLR required to have a first receiver permit may only receive AMLR that were harvested in a manner consistent with CCAMLR conservation measures and this subpart.

(4) Duration. Unless revoked or suspended, an AMLR first receiver permit is valid from its date of issuance to its date of expiration.

(5) Prohibition on transfer or assignment. AMLR first receiver permits are valid only for the person to whom NMFS issued the permit and may not be transferred or assigned.

(6) Changes in information submitted by permit applicants or permit holders:

(i) Changes in pending applications. Applicants for an AMLR first receiver permit must report any change in the information contained in the application to the Assistant Administrator in writing as soon as possible.

(ii) Changes occurring after permit issuance. An AMLR first receiver permit holder must report any change to information previously submitted to the Assistant Administrator in writing within 15 days of the change. Based on such information, the Assistant Administrator may revise the permit effective upon notification to the permit holder.

(7) Fees. NMFS may charge a fee to recover the administrative expenses of permit issuance. NMFS will determine the fee in accordance with the procedures in the NOAA finance handbook, available from NMFS, for calculating administrative costs of special products and services.

(8) Reporting and recordkeeping requirements. First receivers of AMLRs who have been issued, or are required to have, a first receiver permit under this subpart must:

(i) Accurately maintain all reports and records required by their first receiver permit and this subpart at their place of business;

(ii) Maintain the original permit at their place of business;

(iii) Make their permit, and all required reports and records, available for inspection upon the request of an authorized officer; and

(iv) Within the time specified in the permit, submit a copy of such reports and records to NMFS at an address designated by NMFS.

(d) Revision, suspension, or revocation. NMFS may revise, suspend, or revoke an IFTP, or first receiver permit, issued under this section based upon a violation of the permit, the Act, or this subpart.

(e) A person may not import a marine mammal into the United States unless authorized and accompanied by an import permit issued under the Marine Mammal Protection Act and/or the Endangered Species Act.

§ 300.105 Preapproval for importation of frozen Dissostichus species.

(a) A NMFS-issued preapproval certificate is required to import each shipment of frozen Dissostichus species.

(b) Application. Application forms for a preapproval certificate are available from NMFS Headquarters and the National Seafood Inspection Laboratory. With the exception of the U.S. Customs 7501 entry number, a complete and accurate application must be received by NMFS for each preapproval certificate at least 10 working days before the anticipated date of the importation. Dealers must supply the U.S. Customs 7501 entry number at least three working days prior to the expected arrival of a shipment of frozen Dissostichus species at a U.S. port.

(c) Fees. A person must include the processing fee with each preapproval certificate application. NMFS will determine the fee under the NOAA finance handbook procedures for calculating administrative costs of special products and services and user fees collected for administrative expenses associated with processing applications for preapproval certificates.

(d) Issuance. NMFS may issue a preapproval certificate for importation of a shipment of frozen Dissostichus species if the preapproval application form is complete and NMFS determines that the activity proposed by the applicant meets the requirements of the Act and that the resources were not harvested in violation of any CCAMLR conservation measure or in violation of any regulation in this subpart. No preapproval will be issued for Dissostichus species without verifiable documentation that the harvesting vessel reported to C-VMS continuously and in real-time from port-to-port, regardless of where such Dissostichus species were harvested.

(e) Duration. A preapproval certificate is valid until the Dissostichus product specified in the preapproval application is imported.

(f) Transfer. A person may not transfer or assign a preapproval certificate.

(g) Changes in information.

(1) For pending preapproval certificates, applicants must report in writing to NMFS any changes in the information submitted in their preapproval certificate applications. NMFS may extend the processing period for the application as necessary to review and consider any changes.

(2) Issued preapprovals. For issued preapproval certificates, the certificate holder must report in writing to NMFS any changes to information included in the preapproval certificate application. Any changes related to fish being imported, such as harvesting vessel or country of origin, type and quantity of the fish to be imported or Convention statistical subarea from which the resource was harvested, will void the preapproval certificate and the shipment may not be imported unless authorized by NMFS through issuance of a revised or new preapproval certificate.

(3) The provision of false information in a preapproval application, or the failure to report a change in the information contained in a preapproval application, voids the application or preapproval as applicable.

(h) NMFS will not issue a preapproval certificate for any shipment of Dissostichus species:

(1) Identified as originating from a high seas area designated by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations as Statistical Area 51 or Statistical Area 57 in the eastern and western Indian Ocean outside and north of the Convention Area;

(2) Determined to have been harvested or transshipped in contravention of any CCAMLR Conservation Measure in force at the time of harvest or transshipment;

(3) Determined to have been harvested or transshipped by a vessel identified by CCAMLR as having engaged in illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing; or

(4) Accompanied by inaccurate, incomplete, invalid, or improperly validated CDS documentation or by a SVDCD.

[82 FR 6223, Jan. 19, 2017, as amended at 84 FR 8625, Mar. 11, 2019]

§ 300.106 Catch Documentation Scheme (CDS): Documentation and other requirements.

(a) General.

(1) CCAMLR CDS document(s) must accompany all shipments of Dissostichus species as required in this section.

(2) No shipment of Dissostichus species shall be released for entry into the United States unless accompanied by an accurate, complete, valid and validated CCAMLR CDS document.

(3) Dissostichus species shall not be released for entry into the United States unless all of the applicable requirements of the CCAMLR Conservation Measures and U.S. regulations have been met.

(b) Harvesting vessels.

(1) A U.S. vessel harvesting or attempting to harvest Dissostichus species, whether within or outside of the Convention Area, must possess a valid vessel permit issued under § 300.107, a valid High Seas Fishing Permit issued under 50 CFR part 300, subpart R, as well as DCD issued by NMFS, which is non-transferable. The master of the harvesting vessel must ensure that catch and other information specified on the DCD are accurately recorded.

(2) Prior to offloading Dissostichus species, the master of the harvesting vessel must:

(i) Electronically convey, by the most rapid means possible, catch and other information to NMFS and record on the DCD a confirmation number received from NMFS;

(ii) Obtain on the DCD (or copies thereof) the signature(s) of the following persons: If catch is offloaded for transshipment, the master of the vessel(s) to which the catch is transferred; or if catch is offloaded for landing, the signature of both the responsible official(s) designated by NMFS in the vessel permit and the recipient of the catch at the port(s) of landing; and

(iii) Sign the DCD (or copies thereof), electronically convey by the most rapid means possible each copy to NMFS and provide a copy to each recipient of the catch.

(3) The master of the harvesting vessel must submit the original DCD (and all copies thereof with original signatures) to NMFS no later than 30 days after the end of the fishing season for which the vessel permit was issued and retain copies of the DCD for a period of 2 years.

(c) Transshipment vessels.

(1) A U.S. vessel transshipping or attempting to transship Dissostichus species, whether within or outside of the Convention Area, must possess a valid vessel permit issued under § 300.107 and a valid High Seas Fishing Permit issued under subpart R of this part. The master of a U.S. vessel receiving Dissostichus species by transshipment must, upon receipt of Dissostichus species, sign each DCD provided by the master of the vessel that offloads Dissostichus species.

(2) Prior to landing Dissostichus species, the master of the transshipping vessel must:

(i) Obtain on each DCD (or copies thereof) the signature(s) of both the responsible official(s) designated by NMFS in the vessel permit and the recipient of the catch at the port(s) of landing; and

(ii) Sign each DCD (or copies thereof), and electronically convey by the most rapid means possible each copy to NMFS and to the flag state(s) of the offloading vessel(s) and provide a copy to each recipient of Dissostichus species.

(3) The master of the transshipping vessel must submit all DCDs with original signatures to NMFS no later than 30 days after offloading and retain copies for a period of 2 years.

(d) First receivers. Any person who receives Dissostichus species landed by a vessel at a U.S. port must hold an AMLR first receiver permit issued under § 300.104 and must sign the DCD(s) provided by the master of the vessel and retain copies at their place of business for a period of 2 years. A person issued, or required to have been issued, a first receiver permit under this subpart may only receive fish from a U.S. vessel that has a valid vessel permit issued under § 300.107 as well as a valid High Seas Fishing Permit issued under 50 CFR part 300, subpart R.

(e) Import.

(1) A person who imports fresh Dissostichus species must hold an IFTP issued under § 300.322. To import frozen Dissostichus species into the United States, a person must:

(i) Obtain a preapproval certificate issued under § 300.105 for each shipment. Among the information required on the application, applicants must provide the document number and export reference number on the DED or DRED corresponding to the intended import shipment and, if requested by NMFS, additional information for NMFS to verify that the harvesting vessel reported to the C-VMS continuously and in real-time, from port-to-port, regardless of where the fish were harvested;

(ii) Ensure that the quantity of toothfish listed on the DED (or the Dissostichus re-export document if product is a re-export) matches the quantity listed on the preapproval application within a variance of 10 percent; and

(iii) Provide copies of the DED or DRED as needed to persons who re-export Dissostichus species.

(2) Imports of fresh Dissostichus species do not require a preapproval certificate. If the amount or value of the fresh Dissostichus species to be imported is below thresholds that trigger the requirement to file entry documentation with U.S. Customs and Border Protection via the Automated Commercial Environment (see definition in § 300.321), the importer must complete a report of each shipment and submit the report to NMFS within 24 hours following importation. Verification of the harvesting vessel's reporting to C-VMS from port-to-port is not required for imports of fresh Dissostichus species.

(f) Re-export.

(1) To re-export Dissostichus species, a person must hold an IFTP issued under § 300.322 and:

(i) Submit to NMFS a complete and accurate application for a NMFS Dissostichus re-export document, and

(ii) Obtain validation by a responsible official(s) designated by NMFS and receive an electronically-generated DRED.

(2) When applying for a re-export approval, a person must reference or include the approval number issued by NOAA, for the original validated Dissostichus import document.

(g) Export.

(1) To export U.S.-harvested Dissostichus species, the person must possess an IFTP issued under § 300.322 and:

(i) Submit to NMFS a complete and accurate NMFS application for a DED; and

(ii) Obtain validation by a responsible official(s) designated by NMFS and receive an electronically-generated DED.

(2) Any person who exports Dissostichus species must include the original validated DED with the export shipment.

(h) Recordkeeping. Any person who imports, exports or re-exports Dissostichus spp. must:

(1) Retain a copy of all CDS documents at the person's place of business for a period of 2 years from the date on the documents and provide copies as needed to NMFS; and

(2) Make the IFTP and all CDS documents and other records and reports required by this subpart available for inspection upon request of an authorized officer.

§ 300.107 Vessel permits and requirements.

(a) General. In addition to the High Seas Fishing Permit requirements at 50 CFR part 300, subpart R:

(1) Every vessel of the United States that attempts to harvest or harvests any AMLR must have a vessel permit authorizing the harvest issued under this subpart, unless the attempt or harvest occurs during recreational fishing or is covered by an individual permit. Boats launched from a vessel issued a vessel permit do not require a separate permit, but are covered by the permit issued to the launching vessel. Any enforcement action that results from the activities of a launched boat will be taken against the owner and operator of the launching vessel.

(2) Any vessel of the United States that receives or attempts to receive any harvested AMLR from another vessel at sea, regardless of whether such transshipment occurs in the Convention Area or that receives, or attempts to receive any other goods or materials from another vessel in the Convention Area, must have a vessel permit authorizing transshipment issued under this subpart. Transshipment vessels must comply with the permitting provisions of this section. This requirement does not apply to scientific research vessels or to transshipments covered under an individual permit.

(3) Permits issued under this section do not authorize vessels or persons subject to the jurisdiction of the United States to harass, capture, harm, kill, harvest, or importo Marine mammals. No marine mammals may be taken in the course of commercial fishing operations unless the taking is authorized under the Marine Mammal Protection Act and/or the Endangered Species Act pursuant to an exemption or permit granted by the appropriate agency.

(b) Responsibility of owners and operators.

(1) The owners and operators of vessels permitted, or required to be permitted, under this subpart are jointly and severally responsible for compliance with the Act, this subpart, and any permit issued under the Act and this subpart.

(2) The owners and operators of each such vessel are responsible for the acts of their employees and agents constituting violations, regardless of whether the specific acts were authorized or forbidden by the owners or operators, and regardless of knowledge concerning their occurrence.

(3) The owner of a vessel issued a vessel permit under this subpart must report any sale, change in ownership, or other disposition of the vessel to the Assistant Administrator as soon as possible but no later than 15 days after the change.

(4) The owner and operator of a harvesting vessel issued a permit to fish for krill in the Convention Area using trawl gear must install a seal excluder device and may not possess onboard or deploy trawl gear without a seal excluder device installed.

(c) Application. Application forms for vessel permits are available from NMFS Headquarters.

(1) A separate, fully completed and accurate application is required for each vessel for which a permit is requested.

(2) NMFS must receive applications for vessel permits no later than April 1 for the fishing season that will commence on or after December 1 of that year.

(3) Applications for a permit to harvest krill must, to the extent possible, identify the products to be derived from the anticipated krill catch.

(4) NMFS will only accept permit applications for vessels that have been issued an International Maritime Organization (IMO) number.

(5) NMFS may charge a fee to recover the administrative expense of permit issuance. NMFS will determine the fee in accordance with procedures in the NOAA finance handbook, available from NMFS, for calculating administrative costs of special products and services and user fees.

(d) Issuance. The Assistant Administrator may issue a vessel permit if the Assistant Administrator determines that the harvesting or transshipment activities described in the application will meet the requirements of the Act and will not:

(1) Decrease the size of any harvested population to levels below those that ensure its stable recruitment. For this purpose, the Convention provides that its size should not be allowed to fall below a level close to that which ensures the greatest net annual increment.

(2) Upset the ecological relationships between harvested, dependent, and related populations of AMLRs and the restoration of depleted populations to levels that will ensure stable recruitment.

(3) Cause changes or increase the risk of changes in the marine ecosystem that are not potentially reversible over 2 or 3 decades, taking into account the state of available knowledge of the direct and indirect impact of harvesting, the effects of the introduction of alien species, the effects of associated activities on the marine ecosystem and the effects of environmental changes, with the aim of making possible the sustained conservation of AMLRs.

(4) Violate the Convention or any conservation measures in force with respect to the United States under the Convention. The Convention and the schedule of conservation measures in force can be found on the CCAMLR Web site: www.ccamlr.org.

(e) Duration. A vessel permit is valid from its date of issuance to its date of expiration unless it is revoked or suspended.

(f) Transfer. Permits are not transferable or assignable. A permit is valid only for the vessel to which it is issued.

(g) Display. Each vessel must have on board, at all times, a valid vessel permit and the vessel operator must produce it for inspection upon the request of an authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector.

(h) Changes in information submitted by permit applicants or holders -

(1) Changes in pending applications. Applicants for a vessel permit must report to the Assistant Administrator in writing any change in the information contained in the application. The processing period for the application will be extended as necessary to review the change.

(2) Changes occurring after permit issuance -

(i) Requested changes in the location, manner, or amount of harvesting. Any changes in the location, manner or amount of harvesting must be proposed in writing to the Assistant Administrator and may not be undertaken unless authorized by the Assistant Administrator through a permit revision or issuance of a new permit. If the Assistant Administrator determines that the requested change in the location, manner, or amount of harvesting could significantly affect the status of any Antarctic marine living resource, the Assistant Administrator will treat the requested change as an application for a new permit and so notify the holder.

(ii) Changes other than in the location, manner or amount of harvesting. For changes other than those addressed in paragraph (h)(2)(i) of this section, the owner or operator of a vessel that has been issued a vessel permit must report to the Assistant Administrator in writing any change in previously submitted information as soon as possible but no later than within 15 days after the change. Based on such reported information, the Assistant Administrator may revise the permit and any revised permit would be effective upon notification to the permit holder.

(i) Conditions and restrictions. The vessel permit will contain conditions and restrictions that the Assistant Administrator deems necessary for implementation of conservation measures that apply to the harvesting or transshipment activities. The Assistant Administrator may revise the vessel permit to include additional conditions and restrictions on the harvesting vessel as necessary to implement conservation measures in force with respect to the United States or to achieve the purposes of the Convention or the Act. Any additional conditions or restrictions will be effective upon notification to the permit holder.

(j) Revision, suspension, or revocation for violations. A vessel permit may be revised, suspended, or revoked if the harvesting vessel is involved in the commission of any violation of its permit, the Act, or this subpart. The Assistant Administrator may deny a vessel permit if the applicant or harvesting vessel was previously involved in the commission of any violation of its permit, the Act, or this subpart. Failure to report a change in the information contained in an application within 15 days of the change is a violation of this subpart and voids the application or permit, as applicable. If a change in vessel ownership is not reported, the violation is chargeable to the previous owner.

(k) Transshipment notification. The vessel operator must notify the CCAMLR Secretariat of transshipments of AMLRs, bait, or fuel, and submit a confirmation of the notification to NMFS Headquarters, no later than 72 hours before the transshipment will take place. The vessel operator must notify the CCAMLR Secretariat of transfers of all other goods, and submit a confirmation of the notification to NMFS Headquarters, no later than 2 hours before the transshipment will take place. Notifications of intended transshipments shall include the following information, for all vessels involved:

(1) Names, registration numbers, and IMO numbers;

(2) International radio call signs;

(3) Flag State;

(4) Type of vessels, length, gross registered tonnage and carrying capacity;

(5) Proposed time and position, in latitude and longitude, of transshipment; and

(6) Details of the type and amount of catches and/or other goods, such as food stores and fuel, involved in the transshipment.

(l) Reporting and recordkeeping requirements. The operator of any vessel required to have a vessel permit under this subpart must:

(1) Accurately maintain on board the vessel all CCAMLR reports and records required by its permit.

(2) Make such reports and records available for inspection upon the request of an authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector.

(3) Within the time specified in the vessel permit, submit a copy of such reports and records to NMFS.

(4) Install a NMFS-approved EMTU on board U.S. flagged vessels harvesting AMLR for use in real-time C-VMS port-to-port reporting to a NMFS-designated land-based fisheries monitoring center or centers. The requirements for the installation and operation of the VMS are set forth in § 300.112.

(5) Provide advance notice of the vessel's entry into port using the CCAMLR Port Inspection Report, including the written declaration that the vessel has not engaged in or supported illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing in the Convention Area and has complied with relevant CCAMLR requirements. The CCAMLR Port Inspection Report, and instructions for its submission, is available from NMFS Headquarters.

§ 300.108 Vessel and gear identification.

(a) Vessel identification.

(1) A vessel issued a permit under this subpart must be marked with the vessel's name and its International Radio Call Sign (IRCS) amidships on both the port and starboard sides of the superstructure or hull, so that it is visible at all times from an enforcement or inspection vessel. Fixtures inclined at an angle to the vessel's side or superstructure would be considered as suitable provided that the angle of inclination would not prevent sighting of the IRCS from another vessel or from the air. The vessel's IRCS shall also be marked on the deck. Should an awning or other temporary cover be placed so as to obscure the mark on the deck, the awning or cover shall also be marked with the IRCS. The marks should be placed athwartship with the top of the numbers or letters towards the bow.

(2) Boats, skiffs and craft carried by the vessel for fishing operations shall bear the same mark as the vessel, except that a numerical suffix specific for the boat, skiff, or craft must follow the IRCS.

(3) The vessel identification must be in a color in contrast to the background and must be permanently affixed to the vessel in block Roman alphabet letters and Arabic numerals using good quality marine paints. The letters and numbers shall be: At least 1 meter in height (h) for the IRCS placed on the hull, superstructure and/or inclined surfaces and at least 0.3 meter for marks placed on deck. The length of the hyphen shall be half the height of the letters and numbers. The width of the stroke for all letters, numbers and the hyphen shall be h/6. The space between letters and/or numbers shall not exceed h/4 nor be less than h/6. The space between adjacent letters having sloping sides (e.g., A and V) shall not exceed h/8 nor be less than h/10. If a contrasting color is used for the background of the marks, it shall extend to provide a border around the mark of at least h/6.

(4) The marks and the background shall be maintained in good condition at all times.

(b) Navigational lights and shapes. Each vessel issued a vessel permit must display the lights and shapes prescribed by the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea, 1972 (TIAS 8587, and 1981 amendment TIAS 10672), for the activity in which the harvesting vessel is engaged (as described at 33 CFR part 81).

(c) Gear identification.

(1) The operator of each fishing vessel must ensure that all deployed fishing gear is clearly marked at all times at the surface with a buoy displaying the vessel identification of the harvesting vessel (see paragraph (a) of this section) to which the gear belongs, a light visible for 2 miles at night in good visibility, and a radio buoy.

(2) The operator of each harvesting vessel must ensure that deployed longlines and strings of traps or pots, and gillnets are clearly marked at all times at the surface at each terminal end with a buoy displaying the vessel identification of the harvesting vessel to which the gear belongs (see paragraph (a) of this section), a light visible for 2 miles at night in good visibility, and a radio buoy.

(3) Unmarked or incorrectly identified fishing gear may be considered abandoned and may be disposed of in accordance with applicable CCAMLR Conservation Measures in force with respect to the United States by any authorized officer or CCAMLR inspector.

(d) Maintenance. The operator of each vessel issued a vessel permit must:

(1) Keep the vessel and gear identification clearly legible and in good condition at all times;

(2) Ensure that nothing on the vessel obstructs the view of the markings from an enforcement or inspection vessel or aircraft; and

(3) Ensure that the proper navigational lights and shapes are displayed for the vessel's activity and are properly functioning.

§ 300.109 Initiating a new fishery.

(a) A new fishery, for purposes of this section, is a fishery that uses bottom trawls on the high seas of the Convention Area or a fishery for a species, using a particular method, in a statistical subarea or division for which:

(1) Information on distribution, abundance, demography, potential yield and stock identity from comprehensive research/surveys or exploratory fishing has not been submitted to CCAMLR;

(2) Catch and effort data have never been submitted to CCAMLR; or

(3) Catch and effort data from the two most recent seasons in which fishing occurred have not been submitted to CCAMLR.

(b) Persons intending to develop a new fishery shall notify the Assistant Administrator no later than April 1 for the fishing season that will commence on or after December 1 and shall not initiate the fishery pending NMFS and CCAMLR review or until a vessel permit has been used under this subpart.

(c) The notification shall be accompanied by a complete vessel permit application required under § 300.107 and information on:

(1) The nature of the proposed fishery, including target species, methods of fishing, proposed region and maximum catch levels proposed for the forthcoming season;

(2) Biological information on the target species from comprehensive research/survey cruises, such as distribution, abundance, demographic data and information on stock identity;

(3) Details of dependent and related species and the likelihood of them being affected by the proposed fishery;

(4) Information from other fisheries in the region or similar fisheries elsewhere that may assist in the evaluation of potential yield; and

(5) If the proposed fishery will be undertaken using bottom trawl gear, the known and anticipated impacts of this gear on vulnerable marine ecosystems, including benthos and benthic communities.

§ 300.110 Exploratory fisheries.

(a) An exploratory fishery, for purposes of this section, is a fishery that was previously defined as a new fishery under § 300.109.

(b) A fishery continues to be classified by CCAMLR as an exploratory fishery until sufficient information is available to:

(1) Evaluate the distribution, abundance, and demography of the target species, leading to an estimate of the fishery's potential yield;

(2) Review the fishery's potential impacts on dependent and related species; and

(3) Allow the CCAMLR Scientific Committee to formulate and provide advice to the Commission on appropriate harvest catch levels and fishing gear.

(c) The operator of any vessel engaging in an exploratory fishery must submit, by the date specified in the vessel permit issued under § 300.107, catch, effort, and related biological, ecological, and environmental data as required by a data collection plan for the fishery formulated by the CCAMLR Scientific Committee.

(d) In addition to the requirements in § 300.107, any person planning to enter an exploratory fishery must notify the Assistant Administrator no later than April 1 for the fishing season that will commence on or after December 1 and shall not enter the fishery pending NMFS and CCAMLR review or until a vessel permit has been used under this subpart. The Assistant Administrator will not issue a permit to enter an exploratory fishery until after the requirements of § 300.107 have been met and CCAMLR has considered the notification.

(e) The notification shall be accompanied by a complete vessel permit application required under § 300.107 and information on:

(1) The nature of the exploratory fishery, including target species, methods of fishing, proposed region and maximum catch levels proposed for the forthcoming season;

(2) Specification and full description of the types of fishing gear to be used;

(3) Biological information on the target species from comprehensive research/survey cruises, such as distribution, abundance, demographic data and information on stock identity; details of dependent and related species and the likelihood of their being affected by the proposed fishery;

(4) Information from other fisheries in the region or similar fisheries elsewhere that may assist in the evaluation of potential yield;

(5) If the proposed fishery will be undertaken using bottom trawl gear, information on the known and anticipated impacts of this gear on vulnerable marine ecosystems, including benthos and benthic communities; and

(6) Any other information the Assistant Administrator requires to fully implement the relevant conservation measures.

§ 300.111 Scientific observers.

(a) Except as otherwise specified, this section applies to both national observers and international observers, as well as to vessels of the United States carrying, or required to carry, such observers.

(b) All vessels of the United States fishing in the Convention Area must carry one or more scientific observers as required by CCAMLR conservation measures or as specified in a vessel permit issued under this subpart.

(c) All vessels of the United States conducting longline sink rate testing outside the Convention Area and pursuant to CCAMLR protocols must carry one or more scientific observers as specified in the vessel permit issued under this subpart.

(d) Procurement of observers by vessel. Owners of vessels required to carry scientific observers under this section must arrange for observer services in coordination with the NMFS Southwest Fisheries Science Center Antarctic Ecosystem Research Division. The vessel owner is required to pay for observer services through an observer service provider who has provided observer services to the Federal government within the past year. In situations where no qualified observer is available through a qualified observer provider, the Secretary may authorize a vessel owner to arrange for an observer by alternative methods. An observer may not be paid directly by the vessel owner.

(e) Vessel responsibilities. An operator of a vessel required to carry one or more scientific observers must:

(1) Accommodations and food. Provide, at no cost to the observers or the United States, accommodations and food on the vessel for the observer or observers that are equivalent to those provided for officers of the vessel; and

(2) Safe conditions. Maintain safe conditions on the vessel for the protection of observers including adherence to all U.S. Coast Guard and other applicable rules, regulations, or statutes pertaining to safe operation of the vessel and have on board:

(i) A valid Commercial Fishing Vessel Safety Decal issued within the past 2 years that certifies compliance with regulations found in 33 CFR chapter I and 46 CFR chapter I;

(ii) A certificate of compliance issued pursuant to 46 CFR 28.710; or

(iii) A valid certificate of inspection pursuant to 46 U.S.C. 3311.

(3) Health and safety regulations. Comply with the observer health and safety regulations at part 600 of this title.

(4) Transmission of data. Facilitate transmission of observer data by allowing observers, on request, to use the vessel's communications equipment and personnel for the confidential entry, transmission, and receipt of work-related messages.

(5) Vessel position. Allow observers access to, and the use of, the vessel's navigation equipment and personnel, on request, to determine the vessel's position, course and speed.

(6) Access. Allow observers free and unobstructed access to the vessel's bridge, trawl or working decks, holding bins, processing areas, freezer spaces, weight scales, cargo holds, and any other space that may be used to hold, process, weigh, or store fish or fish products at any time.

(7) Prior notification. Notify observers at least 15 minutes before fish are brought on board, or fish and fish products are transferred from the vessel, to allow sampling the catch or observing the transfer, unless the observers specifically request not to be notified.

(8) Records. Allow observers to inspect and copy the vessel's DCD, product transfer forms, any other logbook or document required by regulations or CCAMLR conservation measures, printouts or tallies of scale weights, scale calibration records, bin sensor readouts, and production records.

(9) Assistance. Provide all other reasonable assistance to enable observers to carry out their duties, including, but not limited to:

(i) Measuring decks, codends, and holding bins;

(ii) Providing the observers with a safe work area adjacent to the sample collection site;

(iii) Collecting bycatch when requested by the observers;

(iv) Collecting and carrying baskets of fish when requested by observers; and

(v) Allowing observers to determine the sex of fish when this procedure will not decrease the value of a significant portion of the catch.

(10) Transfer at sea.

(i) Ensure that transfers of observers at sea via small boat or raft are carried out during daylight hours, under safe conditions, and with the agreement of observers involved.

(ii) Notify observers at least 3 hours before observers are transferred, such that the observers can collect personal belongings, equipment, and scientific samples.

(iii) Provide a safe pilot ladder and conduct the transfer to ensure the safety of observers during transfers.

(iv) Provide an experienced crew member to assist observers in the small boat or raft in which any transfer is made.

(f) Insurance. The observer service provider or vessel owner must provide insurance for national observers that provides compensation in the event of an injury or death during the entire deployment, from the point of hire location to return, equivalent to the standards of the North Pacific Groundfish Observer Program set forth in § 679.50 of this title.

(g) Educational requirements. National observer candidates must:

(1) Have a Bachelor's degree or higher from an accredited college or university with a major in one of the natural sciences; or

(2) Have successfully completed a minimum of 30 semester hours or equivalent in applicable biological sciences with extensive use of dichotomous keys in at least one course.

(h) Health requirements. National observers, and U.S. observers deployed as international observers, must have a signed and dated statement from a licensed physician that he or she has physically examined the observer. The statement must confirm that, based upon the physical examination, the observer does not have any health problems or conditions that would jeopardize that individual's safety or the safety of others while deployed, or prevent the observer from performing his or her duties satisfactorily. The statement must declare that, prior to the examination, the physician was made aware of the duties of an observer and the dangerous, remote and rigorous nature of the work. The physician's statement must be submitted to the NMFS Southwest Fisheries Science Center Antarctic Ecosystem Research Division program office prior to approval of an observer. The physical exam must have occurred during the 12 months prior to the observer's deployment. The physician's statement will expire 12 months after the physical exam occurred. A new physical exam must be performed, and accompanying statement submitted, prior to any deployment occurring after the expiration of the statement.

(i) Standards of observer conduct.

(1) Observers:

(i) Must not have a direct financial interest in the fishery being observed, including but not limited to:

(A) Any ownership, mortgage holder, or other secured interest in a vessel, shoreside or floating stationary processor facility involved in the catching, taking, harvesting or processing of fish;

(B) Any business involved with selling supplies or services to any vessel, shoreside or floating stationary processing facility; or

(C) Any business involved with purchasing raw or processed products from any vessel, shoreside or floating stationary processing facilities.

(ii) Must not solicit or accept, directly or indirectly, any gratuity, gift, favor, entertainment, loan, or anything of monetary value from anyone who either conducts activities that are regulated by NMFS or has interests that may be substantially affected by the performance or nonperformance of the observers' official duties.

(iii) Must not serve as observers on any vessel or at any shoreside or floating stationary processing facility owned or operated by a person who previously employed the observers.

(iv) Must not solicit or accept employment as a crew member or an employee of a vessel, shoreside processor, or stationary floating processor while employed by an observer provider.

(2) Provisions for remuneration of observers under this section do not constitute a conflict of interest.

(j) Standards of observer behavior. Observers must:

(1) Avoid any behavior that could adversely affect the confidence of the public in the integrity of the CCAMLR Scheme of International Scientific Observation or of the government, including but not limited to the following:

(2) Perform their assigned duties as described in the CCAMLR Scientific Observers Manual and must complete the CCAMLR Scientific Observer Logbooks and submit them to the CCAMLR Data Manager at the intervals specified by the Data Manager.

(3) Accurately record their sampling data, write complete reports, and report accurately any observations of suspected violations of regulations relevant to conservation of marine resources or their environment.

(4) Not disclose collected data and observations made on board the vessel or in the processing facility to any person, except the owner or operator of the observed vessel or processing facility or NMFS.

(5) Refrain from engaging in any illegal actions or any other activities that would reflect negatively on their image as professional scientists, on other observers, or on the CCAMLR Scheme of International Scientific Observation as a whole. This includes, but is not limited to:

(i) Refrain from engaging in the use, possession, or distribution of illegal drugs; or

(ii) Refrain from engaging in physical sexual contact with personnel of the vessel or processing facility to which the observer is assigned, or with any vessel or processing plant personnel who may be substantially affected by the performance or non-performance of the observer's official duties.

(k) Sampling station -

(1) Minimum work space aboard at sea processing vessels. The observer must have a working area of 4.5 square meters, including the observer's sampling table, for sampling and storage of fish to be sampled. The observer must be able to stand upright and have a work area at least 0.9 meter (m) deep in the area in front of the table and scale.

(2) Table aboard at-sea processing vessels. The observer sampling station must include a table at least 0.6 m deep, 1.2 m wide and 0.9 m high and no more than 1.1 m high. The entire surface area of the table must be available for use by the observer. Any area for the observer sampling scale is in addition to the minimum space requirements for the table. The observer's sampling table must be secured to the floor or wall.

(3) Other requirement for at-sea processing vessels. The sampling station must be in a well-drained area that includes floor grating (or other material that prevents slipping), lighting adequate for day or night sampling, and a hose that supplies fresh or sea water to the observer.

§ 300.112 Vessel monitoring system.

(a) Requirement for use. Within 30 days after NMFS publishes in the Federal Register a list of approved EMTUs and associated communications service providers for the AMLR fishery, an owner or operator of a vessel that has been issued a vessel permit under § 300.107 must ensure that such vessel has a NMFS-type-approved, operating EMTU installed and continuously operating for the duration of any fishing trip involving the harvesting of AMLR.

(b) Installing and activating the EMTU. Only EMTUs that have been approved by NMFS for use in the AMLR fishery may be used. The vessel owner or operator shall obtain and have installed on the fishing vessel, by a qualified marine electrician and in accordance with any instructions provided by the VMS Helpdesk or OLE, a NMFS type-approved EMTU.

(c) Interference with the EMTU. No person may interfere with, tamper with, alter, damage, disable, or impede the operation of the EMTU, or attempt any of the same.

(d) Interruption of operation of the VMS. When a vessel's EMTU is not operating properly, the owner or operator must immediately contact OLE, and follow instructions from that office. If notified by NMFS that a vessel's EMTU is not operating properly, the owner and operator must follow instructions from that office. In either event, such instructions may include, but are not limited to, manually communicating to a location designated by NMFS the vessel's positions or returning to port until the EMTU is operable.

(e) Access to data. OLE is authorized to receive and relay transmissions from the EMTU. OLE will share a vessel's position data obtained from the EMTU, if requested, with other NMFS offices, the USCG, and their authorized officers and designees.

(f) Installation and operation of the VMS. NMFS has authority over the installation and operation of the EMTU. NMFS may authorize the connection or order the disconnection of additional equipment, including a computer, to any EMTU when deemed appropriate by NMFS.

§ 300.113 CCAMLR Ecosystem Monitoring Program sites.

(a) General.

(1) Any person subject to the jurisdiction of the United States must apply for and be granted an entry permit authorizing specific activities prior to entering a CCAMLR Ecosystem Monitoring Program (CEMP) site designated in accordance with the CCAMLR conservation measure describing the procedure for according protection for CEMP sites.

(2) If a CEMP site is also a site specially protected under the Antarctic Treaty (or the Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty and its Annexes, such as the sites listed in 45 CFR 670.29), an applicant seeking to enter such site must apply to the Director of the NSF for a permit under applicable provisions of the ACA or any superseding legislation. The permit granted by NSF shall constitute a joint CEMP/ACA Protected Site permit and any person holding such a permit must comply with the appropriate CEMP site management plan. In all other cases, an applicant seeking a permit to enter a CEMP site must apply to the Assistant Administrator for a CEMP permit in accordance with the provisions of this section.

(b) Responsibility of CEMP permit holders and persons designated as agents under a CEMP permit.

(1) The CEMP permit holder and person designated as agents under a CEMP permit are jointly and severally responsible for compliance with the Act, this subpart, and any permit issued under this subpart.

(2) The CEMP permit holder and agents designated under a CEMP permit are responsible for the acts of their employees and agents constituting violations, regardless of whether the specific acts were authorized or forbidden by the CEMP permit holder or agents, and regardless of knowledge concerning their occurrence.

(c) Prohibitions regarding the Antarctic Treaty System and other applicable treaties and statutes. Holders of permits to enter CEMP Protected Sites are not authorized to undertake any activities within a CEMP Protected Site that are not in compliance with the conditions of the CEMP permit and the provisions of:

(1) The Antarctic Treaty, including the Agreed Measures for the Conservation of Antarctic Fauna and Flora (including the Protocol on the Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty and its Annexes), as implemented by the ACA and any superseding legislation. (Persons interested in conducting activities subject to the Antarctic Treaty or the Protocol should contact the Office of Polar Programs, NSF).

(2) The Convention for the Conservation of Antarctic Seals.

(3) The Convention and its Conservation Measures in force, implemented under the Act.

(d) Prohibitions on takings. Permits issued under this section do not authorize any takings as defined in the applicable statutes and implementing regulations governing the activities of persons in Antarctica.

(e) Issuance criteria. Permits designated in this section may be issued by the Assistant Administrator upon a determination that:

(1) The specific activities meet the requirements of the Act;

(2) There is sufficient reason, established in the CEMP permit application, that the scientific purpose for the intended entry cannot be served elsewhere; and

(3) The actions permitted will not violate any provisions or prohibitions of the site's management plan submitted in compliance with the CCAMLR Conservation Measure describing the procedure for according protection to CEMP sites.

(f) Application process. An applicant seeking a CEMP permit from the Assistant Administrator to enter a CEMP site shall include the following in the application.

(1) A detailed justification that the scientific objectives of the applicant cannot be accomplished elsewhere and a description of how said objectives will be accomplished within the terms of the site's management plan.

(2) A statement signed by the applicant that the applicant has read and fully understands the provisions and prohibitions of the site's management plan. Prospective applicants may obtain copies of the relevant management plans and the CCAMLR Conservation Measure describing the procedure for according protection to CEMP sites by requesting them from NMFS Headquarters.

(g) Conditions. CEMP permits issued under this section will contain special and general conditions including a condition that the permit holder shall submit a report describing the activities conducted under the permit within 30 days of the expiration of the CEMP permit.

(h) Transfer. CEMP permits are not transferable or assignable. A CEMP permit is valid only for the person to whom it is issued.

(i) Additional conditions and restrictions. The Assistant Administrator may revise the CEMP permit effective upon notification of the permit holder, to impose additional conditions and restrictions as necessary to achieve the purposes of the Convention, the Act and the CEMP Management Plan. The CEMP permit holder must, as soon as possible, notify any and all agents operating under the permit of any and all revisions or modifications to the permit.

(j) Revocation or suspension. CEMP permits may be revoked or suspended based upon information received by the Assistant Administrator and such revocation or suspension shall be effective upon notification to the permit holder.

(1) A CEMP permit may be revoked or suspended based on a violation of the permit, the Act, or this subpart.

(2) Failure to report a change in the information submitted in a CEMP permit application within 10 days of the change is a violation of this subpart and voids the application or permit, as applicable. Title 15 CFR part 904 governs permit sanctions under this subpart.

(k) Exceptions. Entry into a CEMP site is lawful if committed under emergency conditions to prevent the loss of human life, avoid compromising human safety, prevent the loss of vessels or aircraft, or to prevent environmental damage.

(l) Protected sites. Sites protected by the Antarctic Treaty and regulated under the ACA are listed at 45 CFR part 670 subpart F.

§ 300.114 Prohibitions.

In addition to the prohibitions in § 300.4, it is unlawful for any person to:

(a) Harvest any AMLR without a permit for such activity as required by § 300.107.

(b) Import into, or export or re-export from, the United States any AMLR: Taken by a vessel of the United States without a permit issued under this subpart or by a foreign-flagged vessel without valid authorization from the applicable flag state to harvest those resources; without accurate, complete, valid and properly validated CDS documentation as required by § 300.106; without an IFTP as required by § 300.104; or in violation of the terms and conditions for such import, export or re-export as specified on the IFTP.

(c) Engage in or benefit from harvesting or other associated activities in violation of the provisions of the Convention or in violation of a conservation measure in force with respect to the United States under Article IX of the Convention.

(d) Ship, transport, offer for sale, sell, purchase, import, export, re-export or have custody, control or possession of, any AMLR that was harvested in violation of a conservation measure in force with respect to the United States under Article IX of the Convention or in violation of any regulation promulgated under the Act, without regard to the citizenship of the person that harvested, or vessel that was used in the harvesting of, the AMLR.

(e) Refuse to allow any CCAMLR inspector or authorized officer to board a vessel of the United States or a vessel subject to the jurisdiction of the United States for the purpose of conducting any search, investigation, or inspection authorized by the Act, this subpart, or any permit issued under the Act.

(f) Refuse to provide appropriate assistance, including access as necessary to communications equipment, to any CCAMLR inspector or authorized officer.

(g) Refuse to sign a written notification of alleged violations of CCAMLR conservation measures in force prepared by a CCAMLR inspector.

(h) Assault, resist, oppose, impede, intimidate, or interfere with a CCAMLR inspector or authorized officer in the conduct of any boarding, search, investigation, or inspection authorized by the Act, this subpart, or any permit issued under the Act.

(i) Use any vessel to engage in harvesting, or receive, import, export or re-export, AMLRs after the revocation, or during the period of suspension, of an applicable permit issued under the Act.

(j) Fail to identify, falsely identify, fail to properly maintain, or obscure the identification of a harvesting vessel or its gear as required by this subpart.

(k) Fish in an area where fishing is prohibited by the Commission, other than for scientific research purposes in accordance with § 300.103.

(l) Violate or attempt to violate any provision of this subpart, the Act, any other regulation promulgated under the Act or the conditions of any permit issued under the Act.

(m) Provide incomplete or inaccurate information about the harvest, transshipment, landing, import, export, or re-export of applicable species on any document required under this subpart.

(n) Receive AMLR from a vessel, without holding an AMLR first receiver permit as required under § 300.104, or receive AMLR from a fishing vessel that does not hold a valid vessel permit issued under § 300.107.

(o) Import, export or re-export Dissostichus spp. harvested or transshipped by a vessel identified by CCAMLR as having engaged in illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing, originating from a high seas area designated by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations as Statistical Area 51 or Statistical Area 57 or accompanied by inaccurate, incomplete, invalid, or improperly validated CDS documentation or import or re-export Dissostichus spp. accompanied by a SVDCD.

(p) Import shipments of frozen Dissostichus spp. without a preapproval issued under § 300.105.

(q) Observers.

(1) Assault, resist, oppose, impede, intimidate, harass, bribe, or interfere with an observer.

(2) Interfere with or bias the sampling procedure employed by an observer, including physical, mechanical, or other sorting or discarding of catch before sampling.

(3) Tamper with, destroy, or discard an observer's collected samples, equipment, records, photographic film, papers, or personal effects without the express consent of the observer.

(4) Prohibit or bar by command, impediment, threat, coercion, or by refusal of reasonable assistance, an observer from collecting samples, conducting product recovery rate determinations, making observations, or otherwise performing the observer's duties.

(5) Harass an observer by conduct that has sexual connotations, has the purpose or effect of interfering with the observer's work performance, or otherwise creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive environment.

(6) Fish for or process fish without observer coverage required under § 300.111.

(7) Require, pressure, coerce, or threaten an observer to perform duties normally performed by crew members, including, but not limited to, cooking, washing dishes, standing watch, vessel maintenance, assisting with the setting or retrieval of gear, or any duties associated with the processing of fish, from sorting the catch to the storage of the finished product.

(8) Refuse to provide appropriate assistance, including access as necessary to communications equipment, to an observer.

(r) Vessel monitoring systems.

(1) Use any vessel of the United States issued, or required to be issued, an AMLR vessel permit to conduct fishing operations unless that vessel carries a NMFS-type-approved EMTU and complies with the requirements described in this subpart.

(2) Fail to install, activate, repair or replace an EMTU prior to leaving port as specified in this subpart.

(3) Fail to operate and maintain an EMTU on board the vessel at all times as specified in this subpart.

(4) Tamper with, damage, destroy, alter, or in any way distort, render useless, inoperative, ineffective, or inaccurate the EMTU required to be installed on a vessel or the EMTU position reports transmitted by a vessel as specified in this subpart.

(5) Fail to contact OLE or follow OLE instructions when automatic position reporting has been interrupted as specified in this subpart.

(6) Register an EMTU to more than one vessel at the same time.

(7) Connect, or leave connected, additional equipment to an EMTU without the prior approval of the OLE.

(8) Make a false statement, oral or written, to an authorized officer regarding the installation, use, operation, or maintenance of an EMTU or communication service provider.

(9) Fail to report to NMFS and to CCAMLR's C-VMS from port-to-port on any trip during which AMLR are, or are expected to be, harvested regardless of whether the vessel operates, or is expected to operate, inside the Convention Area.

(s) Trawl for krill in Convention Area fisheries without a seal excluder device or possess trawl gear without a seal excluder device installed onboard a vessel permitted, or required to be permitted, under this subpart to harvest krill with trawl gear.

(t) Harvest any AMLR in the Convention Area without a vessel permit required by this subpart.

(u) Ship, transport, offer for sale, sell, purchase, import, export, re-export or have custody, control, or possession of, any frozen Dissostichus species without verifiable documentation that the harvesting vessel reported to CCAMLR's C-VMS continuously and in real-time, from port-to-port, regardless of where such Dissostichus species were harvested.

§ 300.115 Facilitation of enforcement and inspection.

In addition to the facilitation of enforcement provisions of § 300.5, the following requirements apply to this subpart.

(a) Access and records.

(1) The owner