(a) Each invitation to bid, bid, bid acceptance, reduction contract, and bidder—or any other party in any way affected by any of the foregoing—under this subpart is subject to the terms and conditions in this section:
(1) Each invitation to bid constitutes the entire terms and conditions of a reduction contract under which:
(i) Each bidder makes an irrevocable offer to the United States of fishing capacity for reduction, and
(ii) NMFS accepts or rejects, on behalf of the United States, each bidder's offer;
(2) NMFS may, at any time before the bid expiration date, accept or reject any or all bids;
(3) For a financed program in which bidding results do not conform to the fishing capacity reduction specifications, NMFS' acceptance of any bid is subject to the condition that the industry fee system necessary to repay the reduction loan is subsequently approved by a successful post-bidding referendum conducted under § 600.1010. Approval or disapproval of the industry fee system by post-bidding referendum is an event that neither the United States nor the bidders can control. Disapproval of the industry fee system by an unsuccessful post-bidding referendum fully excuses both parties from any performance and fully discharges all duties under any reduction contract;
(4) For a financed program in one reduction fishery that is being conducted under appropriate implementation regulations simultaneously with another financed program in another reduction fishery, where the acceptance of bids for each financed program is conditional upon successful post-bidding referenda approving industry fee systems for both financed programs, NMFS' acceptance of all bids is, in addition to any condition under paragraph (a)(3) of this section, also subject to the additional conditions that both referenda approve the industry fee systems required for both financed programs—all as otherwise provided in paragraph (a)(3) of this section;
(5) Upon NMFS' acceptance of the bid and tender of a reduction payment, the bidder consents to:
(i) The revocation, by NMFS, of any reduction permit, and
(ii) Where the program also involves the withdrawal of reduction vessels from fishing:
(A) Title restrictions imposed by the U.S. Coast Guard on any reduction vessel that is Federally documented to forever prohibit and effectively prevent any future use of the reduction vessel for fishing:
(1) In any area subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, or any state, territory, commonwealth, or possession of the United States, or
(2) On the high seas, or
(3) In the waters of a foreign nation; or
(B) Scrapping of all reduction vessels involved in a fishing capacity reduction program, unless the reduction program vessel has been certified by the Secretary, and the requirements established under § 600.1002(c) are met. Where reduction vessel scrapping is involved and the reduction vessel's owner does not comply with the owner's obligation under the reduction contract to scrap the reduction vessel, the Secretary may take such measures as necessary to cause the reduction vessel's prompt scrapping. The scrapping will be at the reduction vessel owner's risk and expense. Upon completion of scrapping, NMFS will take such action as may be necessary to recover from the reduction vessel owner any cost, damages, or other expense NMFS incurred in the scrapping of the reduction vessel.
(6) Money damages not being an adequate remedy for a bidder's breach of a reduction contract, the United States is, in all particulars, entitled to specific performance of each reduction contract. This includes, but is not limited to, the scrapping of a reduction vessel;
(7) Any reduction payment is available, upon timely and adequately documented notice to NMFS, to satisfy liens, as allowed by law, against any reduction permit/and or reduction vessel; provided, however, that:
(i) No reduction payment to any bidder either relieves the bidder of responsibility to discharge the obligation which gives rise to any lien or relieves any lien holder of responsibility to protect the lien holder's interest,
(ii) No reduction payment in any way gives rise to any liability of the United States for the obligation underlying any lien,
(iii) No lien holder has any right or standing, not otherwise provided by law, against the United States in connection with the revocation of any reduction permit or the title restriction or scrapping of any reduction vessel under this subpart, and
(iv) This subpart does not provide any lien holder with any right or standing to seek to set aside any revocation of any reduction permit or the title restriction or scrapping of any reduction vessel for which the United States made, or has agreed to make, any reduction payment. A lien holder is limited to recovery against the holder of the reduction permit or the owner of the reduction vessel as otherwise provided by law; and
(8) Each invitation to bid may specify such other terms and conditions as NMFS believes necessary to enforce specific performance of each reduction contract or otherwise to ensure completing each program. This includes, but is not limited to, each bidder's certification, subject to the penalties in § 600.1017, of the bidder's full authority to submit each bid and to dispose of the property involved in the bid in the manner contemplated by each invitation to bid.
(b) NMFS will not invite bids for any program until NMFS determines that:
(1) Any necessary reduction amendment is fully and finally approved and all provisions except those dependent on the completion of reduction are implemented;
(2) The final implementation plan is adopted and the final implementation regulations are issued;
(3) All required program funding is approved and in place, including all Federal appropriation and apportionment authority;
(4) Any reduction loan involved is fully approved;
(5) Any non-Federal funding involved is fully available at the required time for NMFS disbursement as reduction payments; and
(6) All other actions necessary to disburse reduction payments, except for matters involving bidding and post-bidding referenda, are completed.
(c) After making the affirmative determinations required under paragraph (b) of this section, NMFS will publish a Federal Register notice inviting eligible bidders to offer to the United States, under this subpart, fishing capacity for reduction.
(d) NMFS may extend a bid closing date and/or a bid expiration date for a reasonable period. NMFS may also issue serial invitations to bid if the result of previous bidding, in NMFS' judgment, warrant this.
(e) After the bid expiration date, NMFS will:
(1) Analyze responsive bids;
(2) Determine which bids, if any, NMFS accepts; and
(3) Notify, by U.S. mail at each bidder's address of
record, those bidders whose bids NMFS accepts that a reduction contract now exists between them and the United States—subject, where appropriate, to the conditions provided for elsewhere in this subpart.
(f) NMFS will keep confidential the identity of all bidders whose bids NMFS does not accept. In financed programs where bidding results do not conform to the fishing capacity reduction specifications, NMFS also will keep confidential the identity of all bidders whose bids NMFS does accept until after completing a successful post-bidding referendum under § 600.1010.