Groundfish: Fishery Management Plan and Amendments

The Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery Management Plan describes how the Council develops decisions for management of the groundfish fishery.

Fishery Management Plan, Amendments and Appendices

Plan Amendments

  • In Development: Amendment 28: Pacific Coast groundfish essential fish habitat and Rockfish Conservation Area modifications
  • Amendment 27 (2017): 2017-2018 harvest specifications and management measures
  • In Development: Amendment 26: Blackgill rockfish
  • Amendment 25 (2015): Unfished and unmanaged forage fish protections
  • Amendment 24 (2015): Creates default harvest control rules for future decision-making
  • Amendment 23 (2010): Amends the harvest specifications framework to meet new requirements in the Magnuson‐Stevens Act regarding annual catch limits and accountability measures, and to be consistent with the revised NS1 guidelines
  • Amendment 22: (Withdrawn; 2009). Proposed a registration program for fishermen intending to land groundfish in the open access fishery
  • Amendment 21-3 (2017):  Creates at-sea whiting set-asides for darkblotched and Pacific ocean perch
  • Amendment 21-2 (2012): Reinstates a provision that was inadvertently deleted in a previous fishery management plan amendment
  • Amendment 21-1 (2011): Modifies the Intersector Allocation Amendment.
  • Amendment 21 (2010): Relates to intersector allocation. Describes allocations of groundfish species and species’ complexes for groundfish fishery sectors.
  • Amendment 20 (2011): Creates the trawl catch share program (also known as trawl rationalization, individual fishing quotas).
  • Amendment 19 (2006): Designates essential fish habitat, minimization of adverse impacts to essential fish habitat.
  • Amendment 18 (2006): Describes policy and program direction for bycatch monitoring and mitigation.
  • Amendment 17 (2003): Creates a framework for a multi-year management process.
  • Amendment 16-5 (2011): Establishes a new overfished species rebuilding plan for petrale sole, which was declared overfished on February 9, 2010; revises rebuilding plans for overfished species; revises proxies used to estimate the overfished threshold and rebuilding threshold for flatfish species; adds a new default harvest control rule. Amendment 16-5 has also been referred to as Secretarial Amendment 1.
  • Amendment 16-4 (2007): Re-evaluates and revises rebuilding plans for depleted (overfished) groundfish species (bocaccio, canary rockfish, cowcod, darkblotched rockfish, Pacific ocean perch, widow rockfish, and yelloweye rockfish).
  • Amendment 16-3 (2004): Implements rebuilding plans to guide rebuilding for bocaccio, cowcod, widow rockfish, and yelloweye rockfish.
  • Amendment 16-2 (2004): Implements rebuilding plans for canary rockfish, darkblotched rockfish, lingcod, and Pacific ocean perch.
  • Amendment 16-1 (2004): Addresses National Standard 1 in the Magnuson-Stevens Act by establishing procedures for adopting and reviewing rebuilding plans for overfished stocks.
  • Amendment 15 (2008): Establishes a limited entry program for the three non-tribal sectors of the Pacific whiting fishery.
  • Amendment 14 (2004 with review in 2014): Establishes a permit stacking system for the limited entry fixed gear sablefish fishery.
  • Amendment 13 (2000): Incorporates Magnuson-Stevens Act provisions for bycatch.
  • Amendment 12 (2000): Creates framework for rebuilding plan development and content. (Note: A court decision in August 2001 remanded portions of Amendment 12 to NMFS for changes. Amendments 16-1, 16-2, and 16-3 incorporate the necessary changes.)
  • Amendment 11 (1998): Incorporates provisions of the Sustainable Fisheries Act into the fishery management plan. Defines essential fish habitat for West Coast groundfish, optimum yield, overfishing rates and thresholds.
  • Amendment 10 (1997): This is a joint amendment with Amendment 12 to the salmon plan, allowing for salmonids to be retained in the Pacific whiting mid-water trawl fishery. The regulations implementing Amendment 10 were never finalized by NMFS, but key components were incorporated into Amendment 20.
  • Amendment 9 (1996): Creates a sablefish endorsement for limited entry fixed gear vessels.
  • DRAFT Amendment 8 (1994): Not adopted. Considers establishing a fixed gear sablefish individual transferable quota system (suspended due to a Congressional moratorium on individual transferable quotas).
  • Draft Amendment 7 (1992): Relates to bycatch of non-groundfish species.
  • Amendment 6 (1992): Establishes a limited entry permit system for the trawl and fixed gear sectors.
  • Amendment 5 (1990): Establishes a framework for specification and apportionment of harvest levels.
  • Amendment 4 (1990): Completely revises the fishery management plan and creates a framework for how harvest levels are specified.
  • Amendment 3 (1988): Completely revised the fishery management plan and creates a framework for how harvest levels are specified.
  • Amendment 2 (1986): Replaced by Amendment 4.
  • Amendment 1 (1984): Replaced by Amendment 4.