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Publice Notice: Pertaining to Summer Flounder and Various Regs 2004

The Virginia Marine Resources Commission invites public comment on proposed amendments to the regulations listed below.

In accordance with § 28.2-209 of the Code of Virginia, a public hearing on the proposed amendments will be held at 12:00 Noon on Tuesday, March 23, 2004, at the 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, Third Floor, Newport News, Virginia  23607.  Copies of the proposed amendments 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.

PROPOSED AMENDMENTS:

I.    Regulation 4 VAC 20-620-10 et seq., "Pertaining to Summer Flounder."

The Commission proposes to establish management measures (minimum size limit, possession limit, closed seasons) for the 2004 recreational summer flounder fishery, according to the ASMFC-approved options, listed below.  Each option includes a closed season from January 1 through March 28, 2004.  The 2003 fishery was managed by a 17 1/2", 8-fish possession limit, with no closed summer season.


Option Minimum Size Limit
(inches)
Possession Limit
(number of fish)
Closed Summer Season Landings
Data Used
1) 17 1/2 8 None
2003
2) 17 1/2  8 None 2002-2003 
3) 17
8
None
2003
4) 17
8
None 2002-2003
5) 16 1/2 8
Any 4 days, July 19-25        2003
6)
16  1/2 8
July 24 -August 15 2002-2003

Note:  Lowering the possession limit, for options based on a 16 1/2" minimum size limit, lowers the extent of the closed season.  Using 2003 landings data, a 16 1/2" and 4 fish limit requires no closed summer fishing days.  Using average (2002-2003) landings data, a 16 1/2" and 3-fish limit requires an 8-day summer closed period.

II.    Regulation 4 VAC 20-950-10 et seq., "Pertaining to Black Sea Bass."

The Commission proposes to modify the closed season for the recreational black sea bass fishery, from September 2 through September 15 and December 1 through December 31 to September 8 through September 21 and December 1 through December 31.

III.    Regulation 4 VAC 20-910-10 et seq., "Pertaining to Scup."

The Commission proposes to modify the commercial harvest and landing limit of scup for the May 1 through October 31 period, in accordance with the coast-wide quota determined for this period by the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission. The current harvest and landing limit for this period is   7,721 pounds of scup.

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VMRC DOES NOT DISCRIMINATE AGAINST INDIVIDUALS WITH DISABILITIES; THEREFORE, IF YOU ARE IN NEED OF REASONABLE ACCOMMODATIONS DUE TO A DISABILITY, PLEASE ADVISE DEBORAH CAWTHON (757) 247-2248 NO LESS THAN FIVE WORK DAYS PRIOR TO THE MEETING TIME AND IDENTIFY YOUR NEEDS.




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