Restructured Observer Program
North Pacific Groundfish and Halibut Fisheries Observer Program
The new North Pacific Observer Program (Observer Program) goes into effect January 2013 and makes important changes to how observers are deployed, how observer coverage is funded, and the vessels and processors that must have some or all of their operations observed. These changes will increase the statistical reliability of data collected by the program, address cost inequality among fishery participants, and expand observer coverage to previously unobserved fisheries. This change is necessary to successfully manage our Alaskan fishery resources.
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) UPDATED!
- Letter from NMFS to NPFMC Council regarding the 2013 Observer Program Annual Deployment Plan
- Summary of Upcoming Changes
- Observer Coverage in CDQ Fisheries
- Outreach Meetings
- News Release, November 2012
* This program information constitutes the Small Entity Compliance Guide required under section 212 of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996.
Annual Deployment Plan
- FINAL 2013 Observer Program Annual Deployment Plan, January 2013
- Observer Fee Information
- Online Observer Fee Payment (To be available before the 2014 deadline)
- Observer Fee Payment Form (Example ONLY)
- Standard Ex-vessel Prices for 2013 (Excel format)
- 77 FR 76459, December 28, 2012. Notice of standard ex-vessel prices for groundfish and halibut for the calculation of the observer fee under the North Pacific Groundfish and Halibut Observer Program.
- Port and port groups used to determine standard prices for observer fees
Observer Deploy and Declare System (ODDS)
- Letter to Vessel owners who were selected for Coverage
- Introduction Letter to All Vessel Owners in the Vessel Selection Pool
- Electronic Monitoring Pilot Study
Regulations and Analysis
- 77 FR 70062, November 21, 2012. Final rule to implement Amendment 86 to the Fishery
Management Plan for Groundfish of the BSAI Management Area and
Amendment 76 to the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the GOA. Amendments 86/76 add a funding and deployment system for observer
coverage to the existing North Pacific Groundfish Observer Program and
amend existing observer coverage requirements for vessels and processing plants.
- 77 FR 29961, May 21, 2012. Notice of a public hearing on the proposed restructuring of the funding and deployment system for observers in the North Pacific groundfish and halibut fisheries.
- 77 FR 23326, April 18, 2012. Proposed regulations to implement Amendment 86 to the FMP for Groundfish of the BSAI and Amendment 76 to the FMP for Groundfish of the GOA.
- News Release: NOAA seeks public input on a new observer program structure for Alaska fisheries
- 77 FR 22753, April 17, 2012. Notice of public hearings.
- 77 FR 15019, March 14, 2012. Notice of availability of Amendment 86 to the Fishery Management Plan (FMP) for Groundfish of the BSAI Management Area (BSAI) and Amendment 76 to the FMP for Groundfish of the GOA.
- EA/RIR/IRFA for BSAI Amendment 86 and GOA Amendment 76 on Restructuring the Program for Observer Procurement and Deployment in the North Pacific, March 2011 and FONSI, June 2012
Request for Proposals (RFP)
- FedBizOpps RFP information for prospective observer service vendors to provide observer support services under the restructured observer program. (external link)
- Contract Award (September 2012)
- National Marine Fisheries Alaska Regional Office
- Sustainable Fisheries Division, PH: (907) 586-7228
- Observer Program Questions (FMA Division - Seattle)
- Logging trips over the phone - NOAA Data Technician Office
- 1-800-304-4846 (option # 1) or 907-586-7163
- Observer Provider (AIS)