The Virginia Marine Resources Commission invites public comment on the proposed amendments to regulations listed below.
In accordance with Section 28.2-209 of the Code of Virginia, a public hearing on the proposed regulations will be held at 12:00 noon, on Tuesday, January 25, 2011, at the Virginia Marine Resources Commission, 2600 Washington Avenue, Newport News, Virginia. Written comments on the proposals should be mailed to Jack Travelstead, VMRC Fisheries Management Division, 2600 Washington Avenue, 3rd Floor, Newport News, Virginia 23607, by 5:00 p.m., Monday, January 24, 2011. Copies of the proposed regulations may be reviewed at the Commission Monday through Friday, 8:15 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., and may be obtained by calling the Commission at (757) 247-2248.
I. Chapter 4VAC20-252-10 et seq. "Pertaining to the Taking of Striped Bass".
The Commission proposes to establish the 2011 quotas for the commercial and recreational striped bass fisheries as 1,430,361 pounds each. The 2010 quota was 1,538,022 pounds per fishery.
II. Chapter 4 VAC20-620-10 et seq. "Pertaining to Summer Flounder".
The Commission will consider proposals by industry to modify the opening date, landing time period, and landing limits for the directed offshore flounder fishery. The directed offshore commercial fishery for summer flounder is currently open twice each year. During both directed fishery seasons, vessels may land up to 7,500 pounds of summer flounder for commercial purposes, no more than twice within each 12-day period. The winter directed fishery season begins on the last Monday in February (February 28 in 2011). The fall directed fishery season begins on the last Monday in November (November 28 in 2011).
The Commission will also consider a proposal to repeal Section 45 of Regulation 620 requiring owners of any vessels harvesting summer flounder outside of Virginia waters to report bycatch and discards on forms for each trip landed in Virginia. This information is already provided by federal landing reports and observer programs.
III. Chapter 4VAC 20-1230-10 et seq., "Pertaining to Restrictions on Shellfish".
On December 21, 2010 the Commission adopted Emergency amendments, effective January 1, 2011, to Chapter 4VAC 20-1230-10, et seq., "Pertaining to Restrictions on Shellfish", to clarify that identification of the original harvest area of any shellfish, through use of tags, pertains to any time during the year. The Commission will consider making these amendments a permanent part of the Regulation at the January 25, 2010 meeting.
IV. Chapter 4VAC20-720-10 et seq., "Pertaining to Restrictions on Oyster Harvest".
The Commission will consider amending Chapter 4VAC 20-720-10, et seq., "Pertaining to Restrictions on Oyster Harvest" by extending the Public Oyster Harvest Season for 2010-2011 in the James River Hand Scrape Area and Thomas Rock Hand Scrape Area of the James River, from February 1, 2011 through February 15, 2011.
VMRC DOES NOT DISCRIMINATE AGAINST INDIVIDUALS WITH DISABILITIES; THEREFORE, IF YOU ARE IN NEED OF REASONABLE ACCOMMODATIONS DUE TO A DISABILITY, PLEASE ADVISE BETTY WARREN (757-247-2248) NO LATER THAN FIVE WORK DAYS PRIOR TO THE MEETING DATE AND IDENTIFY YOUR NEEDS.