March 17 Industry-Funded Monitoring (IFM) Plan Development Team (PDT)/Fishery Management Action Team (FMAT) Conference Call

The Industry-Funded Monitoring (IFM) Plan Development Team (PDT)/Fishery Management Action Team (FMAT) will meet via conference call on Friday, March 17 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

CALLING INFORMATION: The conference line number is (877) 661-2084 and the participation code is 613780.

PURPOSE: The PDT/FMAT will continue discussing and refining the Draft Omnibus Industry-Funded Monitoring Amendment.

NEFMC BACKGROUND: During its January 2017 meeting, the New England Fishery Management Council selected preferred alternatives for: (1) the omnibus amendment overall; and (2) specific coverage targets for the Atlantic herring fishery. These decisions are summarized in NEFMC action. The New England Council is scheduled to review and potentially vote to submit its preferred alternatives to the Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office (GARFO) during its April 18-20 meeting in Mystic, CT.

MAFMC BACKGROUND: During its December 2016 meeting, the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council postponed all action on the IFM Omnibus Amendment pending completion of GARFO's ongoing electronic monitoring pilot project, which is expected to end in late 2017. Following the New England Council’s decision-making in late January, the Mid-Atlantic Council agreed on Feb. 16, 2017 to reconsider its December motion during its upcoming April 11-13 meeting. The Mid-Atlantic Council could take final action to submit preferred alternatives to GARFO during that meeting. NOTE — If the MAFMC does not take final action in April, the NEFMC still could take final action on the herring measures, and both Councils could take separate action on the omnibus measures at a future date. The Omnibus IFM Amendment itself requires action by both Councils to be implemented.

CONFERENCE CALL DISCUSSION: The IFM PDT/FMAT will discuss the New England Council’s preferred alternatives and continue working through clarifications and adjustments to the proposed action.