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DOC/NOAA RIN: 0648-BK55 Publication ID: Fall 2021 
Title: Small-Mesh Multispecies 2021-2023 Specifications 

The New England Fishery Management Council has developed and recommended proposed specifications for the 2021-23 small-mesh multispecies fishery. This fishery manages four hake stocks targeted using small mesh fishing gear: northern silver hake, northern red hake, southern whiting (silver hake and offshore hake combined), and southern red hake. This Council-recommended action would implement small-mesh multispecies catch limit specifications for fishing years 2021 through 2023 based on the September 2020 management-track assessment, increase the whiting possession limit on trips using less than 3-inch mesh to 15,000 pounds, and reset the in-season adjustment trigger for northern red hake to the original value of 90 percent so that in-season accountability measures don’t unnecessarily restrict the fishery at a very low level of landings (the current trigger is 37.9 percent). The Council’s recommended catch limits would increase annual quotas for Northern red hake and southern whiting, and decrease quotas for northern silver hake and southern red hake. These specification limits are intended to keep the risk of overfishing within acceptable levels for these hake species; and to restrict excessive catch of the southern red hake stock, and enhance rebuilding.

Agency: Department of Commerce(DOC)  Priority: Substantive, Nonsignificant 
RIN Status: Previously published in the Unified Agenda Agenda Stage of Rulemaking: Final Rule Stage 
Major: No  Unfunded Mandates: No 
CFR Citation: 50 CFR 648   
Legal Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.   
Legal Deadline:  None
Action Date FR Cite
NPRM  06/11/2021  86 FR 31262   
NPRM Comment Period End  06/28/2021 
Final Action  11/00/2021 
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: No  Government Levels Affected: None 
Small Entities Affected: Businesses  Federalism: No 
Included in the Regulatory Plan: No 
RIN Data Printed in the FR: No 
Agency Contact:
Michael Pentony
Regional Administrator, Greater Atlantic Region
Department of Commerce
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
55 Great Republic Drive,
Gloucester, MA 01930
Phone:978 281-9283