What does this indicator measure?

This indicator measures the amount of time spent by government and private industry on managing the fishery.

Access the West Coast Shorebased IFQ Program Interim Results and the Northeast Multispecies Sector Program Interim Results for Administrative Indicators

Why is this indicator important?

One of the expectations of catch share programs is that they will decentralize decision-making, devolving decisions about fishing from government to fishermen. The amount of time that government spends taking actions to manage a fishery may decrease over time as fishermen (individual quota holders, coops, sectors, associations) have more flexibility to respond to conditions in the fishery. Whether this will require a concomitant increase in the amount of time the fishing industry spends on decision-making, planning, creating and managing associations such as sectors and coops, is of interest to stakeholders.

How is this indicator measured?

To measure change in management actions, we will isolate to the degree possible the time spent on actions that are related directly to the catch share programs. Comparing the number of in-season adjustments per year with important events in the fishery provides some insight into events and circumstances driving the need for detailed adjustments to measures such as time and area closures, re-allocation of harvest, and adjustments to allowable harvest. Information to develop this indicator was collected through text analysis of meeting minutes, council votes, and Federal Register notices.

We will examine both public (government) actions and decision making and private (fishing industry) actions and decision making to determine when, where, and how decisions are made about managing the fishery, and by whom. We will also analyze creation of coops and sectors,and other information on tie spent by the private sector on fishery related decision-making. We may also conduct interviews, potentially with survey questions. We will also look at governance indicators produced by NOAA during its reviews.

What are the strengths and limitations of this indicator?

It is unknown at this time if the level of specificity needed for the metrics is present in existing data. For amount of government time spent on management of catch shares, we will measure both “actions” and time for deliberation. Actions can be extracted from council minutes and reports and from agency formal rulemaking notices. Time can be estimated from meeting minutes and recorded logs. For private actions and time, there are considerable differences between the Northeast and Pacific programs. For example, the NEFSC is collecting information on governance indicators that reflect the sector structure developed for New England. The degree to which these quasi-government entities will share information on their internal decision making processes is unknown. The West Coast program does not include management by sectors, though there are some coops that have been developed, so there may not be a systematic tracking of activities by industry associations, quota brokers, and similar private entities.