When reviewing potential regulatory changes, the Council also draws upon the services of knowledgeable people from local and federal agencies, universities and the public, who serve on Council panels and committees.
Advisory bodies include the Scientific and Statistical Committee (SSC), the Archipelagic and Pelagic Plan Teams, the Advisory Panel (AP), Fishing Industry Advisory Committee (FIAC), Regional Ecosystem Advisory Committees (REAC) and other committees.
Advisory bodies provide comments, both written and oral, on relevant issues being considered by the Council.
Scientific and Statistical Committee (SSC) – The SSC reviews the scientific and technical information of fisheries in the western Pacific Region and provides the Council with scientific advice for a science-based management decision. The SSC is a multi-disciplinary body comprised of oceanographers, resource economists, fishery biologists, social-scientist, population modelers and other knowledgeable experts.
Advisory Panel (AP) – The Council receives advice from a panel of recreational and commercial fishermen, charter boat operators, buyers, sellers, consumers and other knowledgeable about the fisheries in the region, including indigenous fisheries. the panel includes sub panels for the American Samoa Archipelago, Hawaii Archipelago, Mariana Archipelago and Pacific Pelagic Ecosystem.
Fishing Industry Advisory Committee (FIAC) – The FIAC is one of three advisory bodies to the Council required by the Magnuson-Stevens Act that provides input and recommendations on management and conservation actions from an industry perspective. Members include representatives from Hawaiʻi, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands and Guam in industry-related sectors such as fishing, seafood processing, distribution and marketing industries, fishing tackle and marine service and supply providers.
Plan Teams – The Council has teams of scientists, managers and industry representatives who make recommendations to the Council based on their annual review of the region’s bottomfish and seamount groundfish, coral reef ecosystem, crustaceans, pelagics and precious coral fisheries.
Regional Ecosystem Advisory Committees (REAC) – The Council receives advice from the American Samoa, Hawaii and Mariana Archipelago REACs. Each REAC brings together Council members and representatives from federal, state and local government agencies; businesses; and non-governmental organizations with responsibility and interest in land-based and non-fishing activities that potentially affect the marine ecosystem of the relevant archipelago.
Other Advisory Bodies – The Council convenes and solicits recommendations from a variety of other committees as warranted, such as its Fishing Industry Advisory Committee, Community Demonstration Project Program Advisory Panel, Education Committee, Fisheries Data Collection and Research Committee, Protected Species Advisory Committee, Social Science Planning Committee, Non-Commercial Fisheries Advisory Committee, and the Hawaii Bottomfish Advisory Review Board [(BARB)].