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DOC/NOAA RIN: 0648-BL41 Publication ID: Spring 2022 
Title: ●Pacific Whiting Utilization in the At-Sea Sectors 

On March 10, 2022, the Pacific Fishery Management Council (the Council) requested National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) initiate a rulemaking that would apply to the Pacific Coast Groundfish Trawl Catch Share Program participants that operate in the non-tribal whiting fishery. The proposed rule would provide Mothership (MS) sector participants with greater operational flexibility by modifying specific regulations that have been identified as potentially contributing to lower attainment of the Pacific whiting allocation compared to the Catcher/Processor (CP) and Shoreside whiting sectors. Causes of under attainment may include limited availability of motherships for delivery of catch due to seasonal overlap with the Alaska pollock fishery. In addition, existing regulations may be hindering some catcher vessels’ opportunity to harvest or deliver fish to MS processors, by limiting the ability for available processors to accept fish from catcher vessels. This action proposes to adjust the primary whiting season start date for all sectors of the whiting fishery from May 15 to May 1, remove from regulation the catcher vessel (MSCV) processor obligation deadline of November 30, remove from regulation the MS processor cap of 45 percent, and provide the ability to operate as a CP and an MS in the same year.

Agency: Department of Commerce(DOC)  Priority: Substantive, Nonsignificant 
RIN Status: First time published in the Unified Agenda Agenda Stage of Rulemaking: Proposed Rule Stage 
Major: No  Unfunded Mandates: No 
CFR Citation: 50 CFR 660   
Legal Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.   
Legal Deadline:  None
Action Date FR Cite
NPRM  06/00/2022 
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:
Scott Rumsey
Acting Regional Administrator, West Coast Region
Department of Commerce
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
1201 NE Lloyd Boulevard, Suite 1100,
Portland, OR 97232
Phone:503 872-2791