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Public Notice:  Proposed Regulations, August 2018

NOTICE

The Virginia Marine Resources Commission invites public comment on proposed amendments to regulations, as shown below. By August 13, 2018, the proposed draft regulations may be viewed at the Virginia Marine Resources Commission, 2600 Washington Avenue, 3rd Floor, Newport News, Virginia.

In accordance with Section 28.2-209 of the Code of Virginia, a public hearing on the proposed amendments to these regulations will be held no earlier than 12:00 noon, on Tuesday, August 28, 2018, at the Virginia Marine Resources Commission, 2600 Washington Avenue, Newport News, Virginia. Public comments on the proposals should be provided to Robert L. O’Reilly, VMRC Fisheries Management Division, 2600 Washington Avenue, 3rd Floor, Newport News, Virginia 23607, by 12:00 p.m., Monday, August 27, 2018.

I. The Commission proposes to establish the 2018-2019 areas of public harvest, public oyster harvest seasons, and management measures. Compared to the prior season, management measure for the 2018-2019 season may include: 1) adjusting the start and duration of the harvest season on an area basis; 2) changing vessel and individual harvest bushel limits; 3) implementing less efficient gear types, such as patent and hand tongs in certain harvest areas; 4) subdividing the current harvest areas into additional rotation areas; and, 5) in the James River Seed Area, changing seed quota amounts, seed transport permits, and areas open to seed harvest. Any of these described changes would require amendments to the following chapter:

Chapter 4 VAC 20-720-10 et seq., “Pertaining to Restrictions on Oyster Harvest”

In accordance with Section 28.2-203 of the Code of Virginia, the purpose of these amendments is to manage the Virginia public oyster resource for sustainable harvest and to prevent overfishing.

II. The Commission proposes to establish a definition of and uniform measurement process for the total length of fish species. This proposal, if adopted, would require amendments to the following Chapters:

Chapter 4 VAC 20-252-10 et seq., "Pertaining to the Taking of Striped Bass;"
Chapter 4 VAC 20-280-10 et seq., "Pertaining to Speckled Trout and Red Drum;"
Chapter 4 VAC 20-320-10 et seq., “Pertaining to the Taking of Black Drum;”
Chapter 4 VAC 20-380-10 et seq., "Pertaining to Grey Trout (Weakfish);"
Chapter 4 VAC 20-490-10 et seq., “Pertaining to Sharks;”
Chapter 4 VAC 20-500-10 et seq., “Pertaining to the Catching of Eels;”
Chapter 4 VAC 20-510-10 et seq., “Pertaining to Amberjack and Cobia;”
Chapter 4 VAC 20-540-10 et seq., “Pertaining to Spanish and King Mackerel;”
Chapter 4 VAC 20-620-10 et seq., “Pertaining to Summer Flounder;”
Chapter 4 VAC 20-910-10 et seq., “Pertaining to Scup (Porgy);”
Chapter 4 VAC 20-950-10 et seq., “Pertaining to Black Sea Bass;” and,
Chapter 4 VAC 20-960-10 et seq., “Pertaining to Tautog.”

The purpose of these amendments is to establish conformity among all regulations that include a measurement of the length of fish.

VMRC DOES NOT DISCRIMINATE AGAINST INDIVIDUALS WITH DISABILITIES; THEREFORE, IF YOU ARE IN NEED OF REASONABLE ACCOMMODATIONS BECAUSE OF A DISABILITY, PLEASE ADVISE MICHELE GUILFORD (757-247-2206) NO LATER THAN FIVE WORK DAYS PRIOR TO THE MEETING DATE AND IDENTIFY YOUR NEEDS.

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