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South Atlantic Fishery Management Council Update

August 11, 2011

The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (SAFMC) met Tuesday, August 9.  Two major actions on the agenda were approval of the Snapper Grouper Comprehensive Annual Catch Limit (ACL) Amendment and the Snapper Grouper Regulatory Amendment 11 (deepwater closure) for submission to the Secretary of Commerce.  After much discussion, both of these amendments were approved. 

The Comprehensive ACL Amendment was approved by an 8 to 5 vote for submission to the Secretary of Commerce.  The dissenting votes were:  Burgess (NC), Hartig (FL), Phillips (GA), Daniels (NC), and Swatzel (SC).   

Regulatory amendment 11 was approved unanimously and will eliminate the 40 fathom deepwater closure implemented as part of 17B.  The Council noted that alternatives to the deepwater closure will be developed in time but did not specify what those would be.

Note: ****Elimination of the deepwater closure will not be effective until approved by the Secretary of Commerce and notice is given by NMFS of the opening date****

Click here to read the News Release from SAFMC.

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