Quota share divestiture rule

Action status

  • Implemented
  • Undergoing NMFS Review
  • Approved by Council
  • Under development by the Council

By November 30, 2015, anyone who controls trawl quota shares was required to be within the quota share control limits (including the aggregate non-whiting quota share control limit) with respect to all of their holdings—except for widow rockfish quota shares, which continues to be under a transfer moratorium.

In April 2015, the Council recommended that a provision be added to allow individuals to abandon quota shares, rather than transferring them to another party. This abandonment option would be available only up until November 15, 2015. The Council considered but chose not to recommend a delay in the existing divestiture deadline for the aggregate non-whiting quota share control limit.

Additionally, in November 2014 and April 2015, the Council concurred with National Marine Fisheries Service proposals to clarify the protocols that would be applied to bring someone controlling quota share into compliance with the quota share control limits in the event that they had not voluntarily complied by the November 30, 2015 deadline. These clarifications apply to complex situations, such as those that occur when an individual owns quota share in more than one quota share account or when an individual is over the aggregate non-whiting control limit. A proposed rule for these recommendations was published on September 2, 2015, and the public comment deadline for the rule was October 2, 2015. The National Environmental Policy Act analysis for the Quota Share Divestiture Rule was covered by the Amendment 20 EIS.  The final rule was published in the Federal Register on November 9, 2015, with an effective date of November 4, 2016.