NOAA Fisheries revises seafood reporting requirements in wake of Hurricane Laura

NOAA Fisheries has announced revised reporting requirements for federal seafood dealers in portions of both Texas and Louisiana through 5 October in response to the damage caused by Hurricane Laura.

In a bulletin released 31 August, NOAA Fisheries identified several Texas counties and Louisiana parishes that will be under new reporting requirements due to the determination of “catastrophic conditions” existing in the area. Hurricane Laura hit Southwest Louisiana in the morning of 27 August, bringing with it 150-mile-per-hour winds.

The areas included in the new reporting requirements are to be used in the Texas counties of Orange, Jefferson, Chambers, Harris, and Galveston; and in Louisiana Parishes of Saint Tammany, Orleans, Saint Bernard, Plaquemines, Jefferson, Saint Charles, Lafourche, Terrebonne, Saint Mary, Iberia, Vermilion, and Cameron.

All federally permitted dealers in the area without access to electronic reporting are authorized to delay reporting of trip tickets to NOAA Fisheries and use paper-based reporting forms for red snapper and grouper-tilefish individual fishing quota (IFQ) participants. Dealers are asked to report all landings through the state programs as soon as possible.

“The electronic systems for submitting landings and IFQ information to NOAA Fisheries will continue to be available to all dealers.  Participants shall continue to use the electronic systems if it is accessible,” NOAA Fisheries wrote.

Dealers, according to NOAA Fisheries, have been provided the necessary paper forms and instructions for continuing to report during the conditions. The paper forms are also available on request. In addition, NOAA Fisheries is not creating a mechanism to allow for the transfer of IFQ shares from fishers using paper-based systems.

“NOAA Fisheries will continue to monitor and reevaluate the areas and duration of the catastrophic conditions,” NOAA Fisheries wrote. “A subsequent fishery bulletin will be published if additional notice is needed.” 

Graphic courtesy of National Hurricane Center


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