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  • Division of Marine Fisheries

MA Scoping Hearing for Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass Commercial/Recreational Allocation Amendment

Thursday, February 13, 2020
6 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

Address

101 Academy Drive, Buzzards Bay, MA 02532

Contact for MA Scoping Hearing for Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass Commercial/Recreational Allocation Amendment

Division of Marine Fisheries - Boston Office

Address

251 Causeway Street, Suite 400, Boston, MA 02114

Overview of MA Scoping Hearing for Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass Commercial/Recreational Allocation Amendment

The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) and Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (Commission) are seeking public input on the range of issues and information to be considered in the Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass Commercial/Recreational Allocation Amendment. Hearings will be held coastwide February 13–March 3, with all comments due March 17.

Massachusetts Scoping Hearing
Thursday, February 13, 6:00–7:30 PM
Massachusetts Maritime Academy, Admiral’s Hall
101 Academy Drive, Buzzards Bay, MA 02532
Contact: Nichola Meserve, 617-626-1531

Internet Webinar
Tuesday, March 3, 6:00–7:30 PM
http://mafmc.adobeconnect.com/sfsbsb_com_rec_allocation_scoping/
Audio-only access: Dial 1-800-832-0736 & enter room 5068871
Contact: Julia Beaty, 302-526-5250

Written Comment
Accepted through March 17, 2020
Online: http://www.mafmc.org/comments/sfsbsb-allocation-amendment
E-mail: jbeaty@mafmc.org, Subject line: “Fluke/Scup/Sea Bass Allocation Amendment”
Mail: Dr. Christopher Moore, MAFMC, 800 North State Street, Suite 201, Dover, DE 19901
(Include “Fluke/Scup/Sea Bass Allocation Amendment” on the outside of the envelope.)

All comments, regardless of submission method, will be compiled into a single document for review and consideration by both the Council and Commission. Do not send separate comments to the Council and Commission.

Purpose This amendment will consider potential modifications to the allocations of catch or landings between the commercial and recreational sectors for summer flounder (fluke), scup, and black sea bass. The commercial and recreational allocations for all three species were set in the mid-1990s based on historical proportions of landings (for summer flounder and black sea bass) or catch (for scup) from each sector. In July 2018, the Marine Recreational Information Program released revisions to its time series of catch (harvest and discards) estimates. These revisions resulted in much higher recreational catch estimates compared to previous estimates, affecting the entire time series of data going back to 1981. Some changes have also Daniel J. McKiernan Acting Director Charles D. Baker Governor Karyn E. Polito Lieutenant Governor Kathleen Theoharides Secretary Ronald S. Amidon Commissioner Mary-Lee King Deputy Commissioner been made to commercial catch data since the allocations were established. The current commercial and recreational allocation percentages for all three species do not reflect the current understanding of the recent and historic proportions of catch and landings from the two sectors. This amendment will consider whether changes to these allocations are warranted.

Scoping is the first and best opportunity to raise concerns related to the scope of issues that will be considered. You are encouraged to submit comments on which options may or may not be useful or practical for meeting the goal of this action and any other relevant issues the Council and Commission should consider.

Learn More
The Scoping and Public Information Document contains background information on summer flounder, scup, and black sea bass management and on issues that may be addressed in the amendment, as well as a description of the amendment process and timeline. This document, along with additional information and updates on development of this amendment, is available on the Council’s website at http://www.mafmc.org/actions/sfsbsb-allocation-amendment.

Contacts
Nichola Meserve, Massachusetts DMF, nichola.meserve@mass.gov, 617-626-1531
Julia Beaty, Council, jbeaty@mafmc.org, 302-526-5250
Dustin Colson Leaning, Commission, dleaning@asmfc.org, 703-842-0740

Please note that some hearings (including Massachusetts’) will be held in conjunction with supplemental scoping hearings for an ongoing Bluefish Allocation Amendment. A schedule for the bluefish hearings will be posted at: http://www.mafmc.org/actions/bluefish-allocation-amendment.

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