June FWC Commission Meeting (Agenda)

June 9, 2016

June, 2016 Commission Meeting

Time: 8:30am
Dates: June 22 – 23, 2016
Place: Franklin County School Gymnasium
1250 Highway 98
Eastpoint, Florida 32328

This meeting is open to the public

All interested individuals may speak at workshops or meetings of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (Commission) within the guidelines established by the Commission.  To ensure the public’s opportunity to be heard and the orderly conduct of the meeting, the Chairman reserves the right to establish a time for adjournment of the workshop or meeting, to limit the time for speakers, and to limit the time allotted for specific agenda items.

Pursuant to the provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act, any person requiring special accommodations to participate in this meeting should notify the agency at least five calendar days before the meeting by calling 850-488-6411.  Contact the agency using the Florida Relay Service at 800-955-8771 (TDD) or 800-955-8770 (voice) if you are hearing or speech impaired.

Agenda items listed under headings other than “Items Requiring Action” may be re-ordered or moved by the Chairman to different days of the meeting to accommodate scheduling issues.

The meeting may include fact-finding field trips to Commission-managed areas or facilities; or to other areas to learn about management, and enforcement activities.

Typically, the Chairman may ask staff and the public to work through lunch on either day.  Please plan accordingly.

If any person decides to challenge any decision with respect to any matter considered at the meeting, he or she may need to ensure that a verbatim record of the proceedings is made, which includes testimony and evidence upon which the challenge is based.

For information on lodging and restaurants in the area, you may call the Apalachicola Bay Chamber of Commerce External Website at (850) 653-9419, or visit their website.


FWC Commission


Agenda

8:30 a.m., Wednesday, June 22

  1. Call to Order
    1. Call to Order
    2. Invocation and Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag
  2. Administrative Matters
    1. Review and Approve April 2016 Commission Meeting Minutes
    2. Approve Regular Meeting Agenda
    3. Approve Consent Agenda – Any item not approved as part of the consent agenda may be moved to the regular meeting agenda and would be placed elsewhere on the agenda at the discretion of the Chairman.
  3. Executive Director’s Report
  4. Awards and Recognition
    1. FWC Division of Law Enforcement Employee Retirement Recognition
    2. FWC Division of Freshwater Fisheries Management Employee Retirement Recognition
  5. Staff Reports
    1. Critical Wildlife Area.  Staff will provide information regarding potential CWAs and the CWA planning process. Staff will also request Commission direction for moving forward with CWA establishment and modification. Summary Memo
    2. Bear Management.
  6. 2018 Budget Development Overview Summary Memo
  7. Strategic Follow-Up – Expanding Participation in Conservation
    Staff will present an update on the recent and current activities regarding the Expanding Participation in Conservation Strategic Initiative and an update on the Florida Youth Conservation Centers Network. Summary Memo | Presentation
  8. Public Comment on Items Not on the Agenda
  9. Commissioner Exchange
  10. Recess Wednesday’s Portion of the Meeting

    8:30 a.m., Thursday, June 23

  11. Call to Order
  12. Awards and Recognition
    1. Boating Officer of the Year Award

    2. Florida Guides Association Trained-Eyes Coast Watcher Officer of the Year Award

    3. Florida Guides Association Captain Phil Chapman Conservation Award

  13. Fish and Wildlife Foundation of Florida Update – Foundation staff will present an update on the current status of Foundation activities. As a part of this, the Foundation will present the Fish and Wildlife Foundation of Florida Guy Harvey Award, to an FWC staff member.
  14. South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (SAFMC) Report – Staff will report on actions from the SAFMC’s June 13-17 meeting in Cocoa Beach, FL.  Topics include: red snapper, gray triggerfish, and golden tilefish stock assessments; spiny lobster; quota allocations for dolphin and yellowtail snapper; and limited-entry for the for-hire fleet. Summary Memo
  15. Items Requiring Action – Draft Rules
    1. Red Drum – At the April 2016 Commission meeting, the Commission directed staff to implement an Executive Order reducing the daily bag limit for red drum in the Northwest management zone from 2 fish per person to 1 fish, effective May 1 – November 1.  The Commission also directed staff to develop a draft rule that would implement that same reduction long-term for Commission consideration. Summary Memo | Draft Rule | Presentation

      68B-22.005 Bag and Vessel Limits; Sale Prohibited – The proposed draft rule would reduce the daily bag limit in the Northwest red drum management zone from two fish per person per day to one fish per person per day.  The Northwest red drum management zone is all state waters from a line due west of the western point of the Fred Howard Park Causeway just south of the Pasco-Pinellas County line to the Florida-Alabama border.

    2. Mutton Snapper – Based on the most recent mutton snapper stock assessment, the South Atlantic and Gulf Councils are proposing to reduce federal harvest quotas.  Staff will present proposed draft rules for mutton snapper harvest that would increase the recreational, commercial, and importation and sale minimum size limits; reduce the recreational bag limit; and modify commercial trip limits.  These proposed rules are intended to keep harvest below the proposed federal quotas and address stakeholder concerns about this fishery.  The proposed draft rules would modify the Commission’s reef fish rule as follows: Summary Memo | Presentation

      68B-14.0035 Size Limits: Amberjacks, Black Sea Bass, Gray Triggerfish, Grouper, Hogfish, Red Porgy, Snapper –The proposed rule would increase the recreational and commercial minimum size limit for mutton snapper from 16 inches to 18 inches in all state waters.

      68B-14.00355 Size Limits for Importation and Sale – The proposed rule would increase the minimum size limit for importation and sale of mutton snapper from 16 inches to 18 inches.

      68B-14.0036 Recreational Bag Limits: Snapper, Grouper, Hogfish, Black Sea Bass, Red Porgy, Amberjacks, Tilefish, Exception, Wholesale/Retail Purchase Exemption –The proposed rule would reduce the recreational bag limit for mutton snapper from 10 fish per person to 3 fish per person within the 10-fish snapper aggregate bag limit in all state waters.

      68B-14.0045 Commercial Harvest Requirements; Licenses, Season Closures, Bag and Trip Limits –The proposed rule would replace the May through June commercial harvest limit of 10 fish per person per day in all state waters during the spawning season with a three-fish per person per day limit applicable from April through June in Atlantic state waters.  The proposed rule would also establish a 300-pound commercial trip limit for the remainder of the harvest season (July – March) in Atlantic state waters.

    3. Barracuda – In recent years, stakeholders have expressed concern about the population status of Barracuda in south Florida.  While barracuda are detected in some of the research conducted by FWC and its partners, there is not enough rigorous scientific data available to evaluate the status of the population. However, considering the broad agreement among a variety of stakeholder groups that population in south Florida has declined substantially, the Commission implemented bag and vessel limits in 2015 for the recreational and commercial barracuda fisheries in that area and directed staff to gather additional public input about whether or not size limits or other additional regulations were warranted.  The proposed draft rule would create a slot limit for barracuda in south Florida, while still allowing for minimal harvest of trophy size fish in the region. Summary Memo | Presentation

      68B-60.003 Size Limits (NEW) – The proposed draft rule would create a size limit of no less than 15 inches and no more than 36 inches fork length for barracuda harvested from Collier, Monroe, Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach, and Martin counties.  The proposed rule would also allow for the harvest of one barracuda over 36 inches per vessel in these counties.

  16. Staff Report – Bay Scallops: Red Tide Impacts in St. Joseph Bay – Scientific monitoring of bay scallops in St. Joseph Bay indicates that the bay scallop population in that area was severely impacted by the prolonged red tide bloom that occurred in the region from September through December of 2015.  Staff will review research results and feedback received from the community at public workshops scheduled for late May and early June in Port St. Joe.  Staff will also present a recommendation for how to proceed with management of scallops in Gulf County for the 2016 season, given the outcomes of these workshops and additional research to be conducted prior to the Commission meeting.
  17. General Counsel Report
  18. Future Agenda Items
  19. Public Comment on Items Not on the Agenda
  20. Commissioner Exchange
  21. Commission Administrative Matters
    The next Regular Commission Meeting is scheduled for September 8 – 9, 2016 in St. Augustine, commencing at 8:30 a.m. each day.
  22. Adjournment

Consent Agenda

    1. 2017 Commission Meeting dates and locations
    2. Derelict Vessel Removal Grants Rule – Request approval to advertise amendments to the Derelict Vessel Removal Grants Rule, Chapter 68-1.003(7), Florida Administrative Code (FAC), which will update the rule to conform to current standards for issuing grants and provide guidelines for the program. Summary Memo | Guidelines | Rule | Application
      NOTE: Staff is requesting Commission approval to advertise the proposed amendment and file for adoption as soon as possible. If the rule amendment is approved for both advertisement and final adoption, Commission staff will file the rule for adoption as allowed by s. 120.54(3) Florida Statutes, without further public hearing.
    3. Commercial Yellowtail Snapper Gear (Federal Consistency) – The proposed rule amendment would modify current commercial Gulf of Mexico yellowtail snapper gear requirements to be consistent with recent changes approved for Gulf federal waters. Summary Memo | Draft Rule

      68B-14.005 Regulation and Prohibition of Certain Harvesting Gear: Allowable Gear, Incidental Bycatch, Violation – This section would be modified to exempt commercial yellowtail snapper harvesters in the Gulf of Mexico south of 25°09’ North latitude from the requirement to use stainless steel circle hooks when fishing hook-and-line gear with natural baits.

      If this proposed rule is approved, Commission staff would file the rule as allowed by the noticing requirements of 120.54 (6) Florida Statutes, which provides a process for adoption of federal standards without further hearing.

    4. Draft Rule – Bringing fish back from The Bahamas – The proposed rule amendments would exempt recreational harvesters from the requirement to maintain recreationally-caught reef fish, dolphin, and wahoo in whole condition when returning to Florida via vessel from the Commonwealth of the Bahamas.  The proposed rules would also prohibit the sale or purchase of fish landed in Florida via this exception.  This would be consistent with rules that were recently implemented in Atlantic federal waters. Summary Memo | Draft Rule | Presentation
      68B-14.006 Other Prohibitions and Exception (New title) – The proposed draft rule would exempt recreational harvesters from the requirement to maintain recreationally-caught reef fish in whole condition when returning to Florida from the Commonwealth of the Bahamas and the following conditions are met:  (1) skin remains intact on the fish carcass; (2) compliance with federal South Atlantic bag and possession limits; (3) possession of valid Bahamian fishing and cruising permits; (4) possession of valid government passports with current stamps and dates from the Commonwealth of the Bahamas; and (5) continuous vessel transit with fishing gear stowed.  For the purpose of this rule, two fillets would count as one fish toward its respective bag and possession limits.  The proposed rule would also specify that fish landed under this exception may not be purchased or sold.

      68B-41.003 Regional Recreational Size Limits; Commercial Size Limits; Landed in Whole Condition Requirement  and Exception (New title) – The proposed draft rule would exempt recreational harvesters from the requirement to maintain recreationally-caught dolphin in whole condition when returning to Florida from the Commonwealth of the Bahamas and the following conditions are met:  (1) skin remains intact on the fish carcass; (2) compliance with federal South Atlantic bag and possession limits; (3) possession of valid Bahamian fishing and cruising permits; (4) possession of valid government passports with current stamps and dates from the Commonwealth of the Bahamas; and (5) continuous vessel transit with fishing gear stowed.  For the purpose of this rule, two fillets would count as one fish toward its respective bag and possession limits.

      68B-41.007 Prohibited Sale; Vessel for Hire Exception – The proposed draft rule would specify that dolphin landed under this exception may not be purchased or sold.

      68B-57.003 Landed in Whole Condition Requirement and Exception (New title) – The proposed draft rule would exempt recreational harvesters from the requirement to maintain recreationally-caught wahoo in whole condition when returning to Florida from the Commonwealth of the Bahamas and the following conditions are met:  (1) skin remains intact on the fish carcass; (2) compliance with federal South Atlantic bag and possession limits; (3) possession of valid Bahamian fishing and cruising permits; (4) possession of valid government passports with current stamps and dates from the Commonwealth of the Bahamas; and (5) continuous vessel transit with fishing gear stowed.  For the purpose of this rule, two fillets would count as one fish toward its respective bag and possession limits.

      68B-57.007 Prohibited Sale (NEW) – The proposed draft rule would specify that wahoo landed under this exception may not be purchased or sold.

      NOTE: Staff is requesting Commission approval to advertise the proposed amendment and file for adoption as soon as possible. If the rule amendment is approved for both advertisement and final adoption, Commission staff will file the rule for adoption as allowed by s. 120.54(3) Florida Statutes, without further public hearing.

    5. Boca Grande Pass Boundary Update (Draft Rule) – The proposed rule amendment would modify rule language in Rule 68B-4, F.A.C. to update the boundary of the area defined as Boca Grande Pass to incorporate changes made by the United States Coast Guard to the location of navigation buoys marking Boca Grande Channel. Summary Memo
      68B-4.018 Boca Grande Pass Gear Restrictions – This section would be modified to remove the reference to the #12 red buoy as the westernmost boundary of the area defined as Boca Grande Pass and to incorporate the new buoy (Charlotte Harbor Channel LB 6) installed by the United States Coast Guard marking the current location of the entrance to Boca Grande Channel.

      NOTE: Staff is requesting Commission approval to advertise the proposed amendment and file for adoption as soon as possible. If the rule amendment is approved for both advertisement and final adoption, Commission staff will file the rule for adoption as allowed by s. 120.54(3) Florida Statutes, without further public hearing.

    6. Clarification to Conditional Non-native Species in 68-5.002(1)(r).  FWC is proposing to amend 68-5.002, Conditional Non-native Species, to clarify the language in subsection (1) and paragraph (r) regarding the ability take Northern largemouth bass on a fee- or for-hire basis. The classification of Northern largemouth bass as a non-native conditional species prohibits the possession of this fish south and east of the Suwannee River. However, under 68-5.001(1)(c)3, conditional non-native aquatic species are prohibited from being taken on a fee or for-hire basis.  The proposed amendment to 68-5.002(1)(r) would provide clarifying language to allow Northern largemouth bass to be taken on a fee or for-hire basis.  Staff is requesting Commission approval to advertise the proposed rule amendment and file for adoption as soon as possible. Summary Memo
      NOTE: Staff is requesting Commission approval to advertise the proposed amendment and file for adoption as soon as possible. If the rule amendment is approved for both advertisement and final adoption, Commission staff will file the rule for adoption as allowed by s. 120.54(3) Florida Statutes, without further public hearing.
    7. Clarification to Freshwater Tournament Permit Language in 68A-9.002(4).  FWC is proposing to amend 68A-9.002(4), Permits to Take Wildlife or Freshwater Fish for Justifiable Purposes, to simplify and clarify the permitting process and to address specific questions regarding tournament size. FWC issues permits to allow anglers participating in a freshwater fishing tournament the ability to temporarily possess fish not meeting applicable size requirements. In order to receive a permit, the tournament ensures that all fish are live-released following the weigh-in, all fish are handled in accordance with FWC’s guidelines, and post tournament reporting is completed.  Staff is requesting Commission approval to advertise the proposed rule amendment and file for adoption as soon as possible. Summary Memo
      NOTE: Staff is requesting Commission approval to advertise the proposed amendment and file for adoption as soon as possible. If the rule amendment is approved for both advertisement and final adoption, Commission staff will file the rule for adoption as allowed by s. 120.54(3) Florida Statutes, without further public hearing.
    8. Marine Turtle Permit Rule, 68E-1, Final Rule. To request final adoption of the Marine Turtle Permit Rule, Chapter 68E, Florida Administrative Code (FAC) and approval to publish a Notice of Change. Summary Memo
    9. Rule 68-1.003(12), FAC, Boating Infrastructure Grant Program.  Request approval to amend the Boating Infrastructure Grand Program Rule which will update the rule to conform to the changes in 50 CFR Part 86, Boating Infrastructure Grant (BIG) Program. Summary Memo | Rule Change | Guidelines
      NOTE: Staff is requesting Commission approval to advertise the proposed amendment and file for adoption as soon as possible. If the rule amendment is approved for both advertisement and final adoption, Commission staff will file the rule for adoption as allowed by s. 120.54(3) Florida Statutes, without further public hearing .
Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: