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Sending comments? Written comments must be received at the NEFMC office no later than 8:00 a.m., Friday, November 27, 2020 to be considered at this meeting. Please address comments to Council Chairman Dr. John Quinn or Executive Director Tom Nies at: NEFMC, 50 Water St., Mill 2, Newburyport, MA 01950. Email submissions should be sent to

IMPORTANT:  Due to ongoing federal and state travel restrictions and public safety guidelines related to COVID-19, this meeting will be conducted by webinar. Please continue to monitor this webpage for updates.

PUBLIC COMMENTS:  The Council’s “Guidelines for Providing Public Comments” can be found here.

Open Period for Public Comment – Sign Up Now: On Tuesday, December 1 at 1:30 p.m., the Council will give the public an opportunity to provide brief comments on issues relevant to Council business but not listed on the agenda. Interested in speaking? Email Janice Plante at to get on the list.

  • Don’t forget! If you want to speak during opportunities for public comment, you need to: (1) register for the webinar; and (2) actually “join” the webinar. People who call in by telephone without joining the webinar will be in listen-only mode. Those who take both steps – register and then join the webinar – will see the meeting screen and be able to click on a “raise hand” button, which will let the meeting organizer know you want to be unmuted to speak.
  • Here is the Council’s Remote Participation Guide with instructions for how to provide oral comments during the webinar meeting.
  • Having trouble with the webinar? We have a Help Desk! Our staff is only a phone call or email away. Click HERE for assistance.

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

9:00 a.m. Introductions and Announcements (Chairman Dr. John Quinn)

9:10 Reports on Recent Activities - Council Chairman, Council Executive Director, Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office (GARFO) Regional Administrator, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) General Counsel, Northeast Fisheries Science Center (NEFSC), Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (MAFMC), Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, U.S. Coast Guard, NOAA Enforcement, International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) Advisory Committee

10:30 Ecosystem-Based Fishery Management (John Pappalardo)

12:30 p.m. Lunch Break

1:30 Open Period for Public Comment

Opportunity for the public to provide brief comments on issues relevant to Council business but not listed on this agenda (please limit remarks to 3-5 minutes)

1:45 Atlantic Herring Report (Rick Bellavance) 

2:10 Standardized Bycatch Reporting Methodology (Staff) 

2:40 Northeast Ocean Data Portal (Nick Napoli, NROC; Dr. Fiona Hogan, RODA) 

3:00 Habitat Committee Report (Eric Reid; Chris Schillaci, GARFO)

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

9:00 a.m. Fall 2020 Management Track Assessments (Dr. Russell Brown, Northeast Fisheries Science Center)

10:15 Scientific and Statistical Committee (SSC) Report – Part 1 (SSC Chair Dr. Jason McNamee) 

11:00 Scallop Committee Report (Vincent Balzano)

12:00 p.m. Lunch Break

1:00 Small-Mesh Multispecies (Whiting) Committee Report (Rick Bellavance)

2:00 Scientific and Statistical Committee (SSC) Report – Part 2 (SSC Chair Dr. Jason McNamee) 

3:00 Groundfish Committee Report (Terry Alexander)

Thursday, December 3, 2020

9:00 a.m. NOAA Guidance to Councils on Financial Disclosures and Voting Recusals (Mitch MacDonald, NOAA GC)

10:00 Spiny Dogfish (Rick Bellavance; Jason Didden, Mid-Atlantic Council staff)

11:00 Skate Committee Report (Dr. Matt McKenzie)

11:30 NEFSC Report on Recent Activities (Dr. Jon Hare)

11:50 North Atlantic Right Whales (NEFSC; GARFO; Terry Alexander)

1:15 p.m. Other Business

This meeting will be recorded. Consistent with 16 USC 1852, a copy of the recording is available upon request.