Council News and Actions

Sanctuary Advisory Council News

Tuesday, January 9, 2024

Time: 10:00 AM–4:50 PM ET
Location: Susan Shipman Environmental Learning Center,
1 Conservation Way, Brunswick, Georgia 31520

In-person attendance and virtual access via GoToWebinar

Public comment will be taken at approximately 3:45 p.m. This meeting is free and open to the public. Agenda topics include marine conservation needs and initiatives in the South Atlantic Bight, McIntosh County’s promotion of Gray’s Reef National Marine Sanctuary, and President Biden’s America The Beautiful initiative.

Sanctuary Advisory Council Actions

Council members provide advice and recommendations to the Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary superintendent in the form of letters, resolutions, and passed motions.

At times, the council suggests that these recommendations be routed to officials within the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, or other entities.

Below are actions of the Gray's Reef Sanctuary Advisory Council.

2023

The SAC formed by general consent a Citizen Science Working Group to investigate citizen science opportunities supporting GRNMS and submit findings and recommendations to the SAC no later than July 2, 2024 - 18 October 2023

The SAC formed by general consent a Public Engagement Working Group to develop an engagement strategy to advance public awareness of, and connection to, GRNMS through SAC representatives; implement at least one activity during CY2024; and report to the SAC on event outcome(s) and future strategy no later than October 9, 2024 - 18 October 2023

The SAC approved by general consent the following list of priority advisory council work items for the next 18 months:

  • Investigate citizen science opportunities within GRNMS and make recommendations
  • Provide recommendations to NOAA regarding the President’s 30X30 conservation initiative
  • Explore effective collaboration among the SAC, sanctuary, and GRNMS Foundation Chapter to build synergistic support for sanctuary programs and needs
  • Develop an engagement strategy to enhance public awareness of, and connection to, GRNMS through their SAC representatives and implement at least one activity. - 18 July 2023

The council passed a motion 10-0 to recommend to the sanctuary superintendent that the current Fishing Industry seat on the council be converted to a Tourism Seat upon the next revision of the Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Council Charter - 11 January 2023.

The council passed a motion 10-0 to recommend to the sanctuary superintendent that he assess installing mooring buoys within Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary as part of the upcoming management plan review and update - 11 January 2023.

2022

Letter to John Armor, director of NOAA's Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, regarding advisory council concerns with text and conditions within likeness and copyright release forms used by NOAA for advisory council administrative purposes - View/Download - 1 November 2022

Established the 30 x 30 Working Group to explore existing regional activities or new proposals for President Biden's 30 X 30 Conserving America the Beautiful Initiative that relate directly to natural resource and habitat conservation at GRNMS - 24 March 2022.

Received and accepted final reports from, and subsequently disbanded, the Science Advisory Working Group (SAG) and the Recreational Fishing Working Group - 24 March 2022.

Confirmed that the Law Enforcement Working Group had accomplished past assigned goals and disbanded the group - 24 March 2022.

2021

Letter to John Armor, director of NOAA's Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, regarding advisory council recommendations about the Conserving America the Beautiful Initiative (also known as the 30x30 Initiative) - View/Download - 29 November 2021

Letter to Stan Rogers, superintendent of Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary, regarding final report out and dissolution of the Ecological Connectivity Working Group of the advisory council. View/Download - 5 February 2021.

Letter to Michael Denmark, chair of Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Council, regarding final report out of the Ecological Connectivity Working Group of the advisory council. View/Download - 29 January 2021.

2018

Letter in response to the call for public comments on the Five-Year Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) Draft Proposed Program (OPP) for 2019 to 2024, as proposed by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) and referenced in Federal Register Volume 83, Number 5 (Monday, January 8, 2018) Notices, Pages 829-834,FR Doc No: 2018-0008 - View/Download - 2 March 2018

2017

Letter to John Armor, director of NOAA's Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, regarding visitor use at Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary - View/Download - 29 November 2017

2010-2015

Letter to the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management on Environmental Studies Program - View/Download - 20 November 2015

Letter of Support for Characterizing and Monitoring Natural and Anthropogenic Sound in Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary - View/Download - 16 June 2014

Comment Letter on the Proposed Rule to Eliminate the Expiration Date Contained in the Final Rule to Reduce the Threat of Ship Collisions with North Atlantic Right Whales - View/Download - 26 July 2013

Letter of Support for Reactivation of the Site Evaluation list - View/Download - 9 October 2012
Ocean Acidification Resolution - View/Download - 28 January 2010.

Letter of Recommendation on Research Coordinator Position - View/Download - 15 April 2010

1999-2009

Recommendations on Research Area Designation - View/Download - 19 August 2008

Recommendations on Research Area Designation - View/Download - 22 June 2005