Proposed Otago Regional Policy Statement 2021

The Proposed Otago Regional Policy Statement 2021 (Proposed RPS 21) sets the direction for future management of Otago's natural and physical resources.


​This page records progress on the submissions and hearing process for the Proposed ORPS 21. It includes:


News and Updates


What does a Regional Policy Statement do?

It sets out what we want for Otago, what’s stopping us achieving this, and how we will solve those problems. The Proposed RPS 21 identifies the significant resource management issues for the region. It also explains how national direction on resource management will be applied in Otago and provides direction on how to balance potentially conflicting requirements.

The Proposed RPS 21 doesn’t contain rules like a regional or district plan. Its role is to provide high-level guidance by way of policies and objectives and establish the framework for Otago's regional and district plans in which more specific resource management policies, objectives and rules will sit.


A summary of the process so far

Submissions and further submissions on the Proposed RPS 21 are now closed. All documents relevant to the submissions process now pass to the Office of the Chief Freshwater Commissioner, who will convene hearings on the Proposed RPS 21. The key documents are available below, along with a summary of the key steps in the submissions process to this point.


RPS Hearings Process

Click here for information on the RPS hearings process.

The Hearings Panel will provide further information on the hearings process in due course. The Hearings Panel will use ORC’s existing Address for Service list so, if you are a submitter or further submitter, please keep us updated with any changes to your contact details.

ORC will continue to provide information as it comes to hand on this website.


High Court Declaratory Proceedings

When ORC notified the Proposed RPS 21, it was satisfied that the Proposed RPS 21 is a freshwater planning instrument in accordance with the Resource Management Act 1991 (“RMA”). Questions have been raised whether the Proposed RPS 21 is a freshwater planning instrument in terms of section 80A of the RMA.

To resolve this question, ORC has brought proceedings in the High Court in Dunedin under the Declaratory Judgments Act 1908. Read more here.


Documents and Resources

Regional Policy Statement

This is the version notified on 26 June 2021:

  • Read the Proposed RPS 21 ePlan  (see below for help with using the ePlan)
  • Read the Proposed RPS 21 as a PDF
  • Microsoft Word version available on request by emailing
  • Read the public notice here


Section 32 Report

This report provides the reasoning supporting the notified Proposed RPS 21:


Summary of decisions requested

These reports summarise the decisions requested by submitters on the Proposed RPS21. The SODR with Further Submissions and Errata includes all submissions received and also includes all further submissions received on those submissions. It does not include submissions without an address for service (recorded in Part B of the original SoDR).

The documents below this note do not include further submissions.


Submissions and Further submissions

The full submissions on the Proposed RPS 21: 


Summary of Process so far

Date Action
26 June 2021 Proposed Otago Regional Policy Statement is notified. Submissions period opens.
3 September 2021 Submissions period closes.
September to October 2021 ORC staff develop the Summary of Decisions Requested.
30 October 2021 Summary of Decisions Requested is notified, and further submissions called for.
12 November 2021 Further submissions period closes.
17 November 2021 The Summary of Decisions Requested – Corrigendum is notified to allow further submissions on submission points that were incorrectly transcribed in the Summary of Decisions Requested.
1 December 2021 Further submissions process for Summary of Decisions Requested – Corrigendum closes.
4 May 2022 ORC pORPS Section 42A report released
27 May 2022 Invitations pORPS submitters to join pre-hearing discussions closed


Help and further information

Read about the review process

Read more about the development of the Proposed RPS 21 here


  • pORPS Hearing Process – Email for all matters in relation to the hearing process including updates to registered submitter contact details
  • General pORPS matters (not hearing process related) - Call 0800 474 082 or email us at for non-hearing matters.


Guidance documents

These documents provide further help with using the ePlan:

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