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 24, 2012 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 23, 2012. 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 4 VAC20-530-10 et seq., "Pertaining to American Shad".
The Commission proposes to amend this regulation, to extend the limited by-catch of American shad, in certain areas in the James, York and Rappahannock rivers, excluding the spawning areas, into 2012. The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission has approved Virginia's American shad by-catch proposal for 2012. A by-catch of American shad is limited to 10 fish per vessel in the designated areas, when the fisherman obtains the appropriate permit, harvests at least an equal number of spot, croaker, bluefish, catfish, striped bass or white perch, uses only anchored or staked gill nets, and reports his catch on a weekly basis to the Commission.
II. Chapter 4 VAC20-1120-10 et seq., "Pertaining to Tilefish and Grouper".
The Commission proposes to amend this regulation to establish separate commercial management measures for golden tilefish, blueline tilefish, and sand tilefish. These measures are in response to a National Marine Fisheries Service rule change that raises the commercial or incidental vessel catch limit for golden tilefish, from 300 pounds to 500 pounds per trip, and subjects the golden tilefish fishery to in-season closures. In addition, new commercial management measures, separate or combined, for blueline tilefish and sand tilefish will be considered to set the possession limit from 100 to 300 pounds.
III. Chapter 4 VAC20-260-10 et seq., "Pertaining to Designation of Seed and Clean Cull Areas".
The Commission proposes to amend this regulation to indicate its approval of an additional metallic container for the measurement of the Virginia oyster bushel. The new container shall be that manufactured by North Machine Shop in Mathews, Virginia and is 18.5 inches in diameter across the top and bottom and 11 inches deep. The volume of the container is approximately 2,956 cubic inches.
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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 BETTY WARREN (757-247-2248) NO LATER THAN FIVE WORK DAYS PRIOR TO THE MEETING DATE AND IDENTIFY YOUR NEEDS.