Final Approval of Emergency Regulations: Recreational Quillback Rockfish (Sections 27.20, 27.25, 27.30, 27.35, 27.40, 27.45, 27.50, 28.55, Title 14, California Code of Regulations (CCR))
October 30, 2023
In accordance with the Administrative Procedure Act, the Office of Administrative Law (OAL) approved, on October 30, 2023, the regulatory action to amend Sections 27.20, 27.25, 27.30, 27.35, 27.40, 27.45, 27.50 and 28.55, Title 14, California Code of Regulations (CCR). The OAL regulatory file number for this OAL action is 2023-1020-01E. In its review, OAL only made non-substantive edits, such as punctuation or spacing, or subsection references to the regulatory text noticed October 9. The new regulations are effective as of October 30, 2023, and are in effect for at least 180 days pursuant to Government Code Section 11346.1 and 11349.6. The final approval to the rulemaking file consists of the following documents:
Notice of Proposed Emergency Rulemaking: Recreational Quillback Rockfish (Sections 27.20, 27.25, 27.30, 27.35, 27.40, 27.45, 27.50, 28.55, Title 14, California Code of Regulations (CCR))
October 9, 2023
The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (Department) is providing Notice of Proposed Emergency Action to amend sections 27.20, 27.25, 27.30, 27.35, 27.40, 27.45, 27.50, 28.55, Title 14, California Code of Regulations (CCR).
The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (Department) proposes an emergency action that will prohibit the retention of quillback rockfish (Sebastes maliger) statewide and prohibit boat-based groundfish fishing shoreward of the 50-fathom Rockfish Conservation Area (RCA) boundary line from Point Conception to the California/Oregon border, consistent with a federal regulatory action expected to publish in October 2023. The 2021 quillback rockfish stock assessment concluded that the population status of quillback rockfish in California is in severe decline.
The proposed emergency regulations would allow vessels to anchor, drift, or transit in shallow water with groundfish species aboard that were legally taken in offshore waters seaward of the 50-fathom RCA boundary line, so long as no recreational fishing gear is deployed. Exceptions to the “no gear may be deployed shoreward of the RCA boundary line with groundfish that are closed to take or possession aboard” regulation would be provided to allow for otherwise legal use of hoop nets, crab traps and dip nets, as specified. These allowances are not expected to increase impacts to quillback rockfish populations, and would allow for additional fishing opportunities on the same trip for other species that are open to fishing.
Many of the proposed amendments to regulations are designed to mirror federal groundfish regulations expected to be published in the Federal Register in October 2023 that will prohibit recreational retention of quillback rockfish in California, and also establish “offshore-only” fisheries for waters from the Oregon-California border to Point Conception. Additional language would authorize the ability to use hoop nets, crab traps and dip nets as specified to take non-groundfish species in areas closed to groundfish fishing while shelf and slope rockfish and lingcod are aboard.
WRITTEN COMMENT PERIOD
Any interested person may present statements, arguments, or contentions, in writing, submitted via U.S. mail or e-mail, relevant to the proposed emergency regulatory action. The Department anticipates submitting the Written comments submitted via U.S. mail or e-mail must be received at OAL within five days after the Department submits the emergency regulations to OAL for review. The Department anticipates it will submit the rulemaking to OAL on or after October 16, 2023. For the status of the Department’s submittal to OAL for review, and the end of the five-day written submittal period, please consult OAL's website(opens in new tab) under the heading “Emergency Regulations.”
Please reference submitted comments as regarding “CDFW Emergency Regulations: Quillback Rockfish” addressed to:
Office of Administrative Law
300 Capitol Mall, Suite 1250
Sacramento, CA 95814
Fax No.: 916-323-6826
Department of Fish and Wildlife
Attn: Kerri Foote
1010 Riverside Parkway
Sacramento, CA 95605
The current rulemaking file for this proposal consists of the following documents: