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Operative Regional Policy Statement

The Regional Policy Statement (3MB, pdf) is a document prepared under the Resource Management Act 1991 (RMA) that identifies the major resource management issues for the Bay of Plenty, and how to sustainably manage the region's natural and physical resources.

Those issues include:

  • Managing our harbours, lakes and waterways.
  • Protecting our natural and historical heritage.
  • Improving the air quality in Rotorua city.
  • Enhancing our native ecosystems.
  • Responding to the region's future growth, so people can continue to enjoy living, working and playing in the Bay.

Next Proposed Regional Policy Statement released

The Proposed Bay of Plenty Regional Policy Statement 2010 (Proposed RPS) was publicly notified for submissions in November 2010.

Submissions have been received and hearings held. Council's decisions on the Water Quality and Land Use and Coastal Environment provisions were released on 27 March 2012. Decisions on the remaining parts of the Proposed RPS were released on Tuesday 14 August 2012.

Proposed Variation 1 - Coastal Policy to the Proposed RPS was notified for submissions on Thursday 31 May 2012.  The proposed variation is to ensure the Proposed RPS meets the requirements of  the New Zealand Coastal Policy Statement 2010 (NZCPS). Proposed Variation 1 includes maps identifying the coastal environment and areas with high natural character. Council's decisions were notified on 26 March 2013.

Most appeals have since been resolved by mediation. A copy of the proposed RPS reflecting all provisions past legal challenge (either by consent order or Environment Court decison) is available at the links below:

Check out the Next RPS webpage for more details.

Statutory Acknowledgements

From November 2010 a compendium document Nga Whakaaetanga-a-Ture ki Te Taiao a Toi (Statutory Acknowledgements in the Bay of Plenty) to the operative Bay of Plenty Regional Policy Statement and regional plans is available. Check out the Statutory Acknowledgements webpage for more information.

Operative Changes

Maps associated to Change No. 2 and Change No. 3 - Chapter 17A (Growth Management for the Western Bay of Plenty)

Order a copy of the RPS

Order the Operative Regional Policy Statement (RPS) by phone on 0800 884 880 or email us at The RPS costs $37 (GST inclusive) and is available to view at Bay of Plenty Regional Council offices, all public libraries throughout the Bay of Plenty and service centres of Bay of Plenty's city and district councils.

Why is the Regional Policy Statement (RPS) important?

  • It's a statutory policy document that provides an overview of the region's significant resource management issues.
  • It must be given effect to by the region's city and district councils when developing their district plans.
  • It sets out policies and methods for managing the region's significant resource management issues.

Review of the Operative RPS and development of the Next RPS

On 15 May 2008, the Strategic Policy Committee asked for the RPS to be reviewed. Following the review, in December 2008 Council decided (under Section 79(3) of the RMA 1991) to replace the RPS. Work is now underway on consulting on and developing the Next Regional Policy Statement.

Matters considered during the review:

  • The Monitoring and Evaluation Report (2.2MB, pdf) of the operative RPS was completed to see how efficient and effective it has been (Section 35 RMA, 1991). The report was approved by the Strategic Policy Committee on 12 November 2008.
  • Central Government initiatives, changes and National Policy Statements.
  • Changes to the RMA, including councils functions.
  • RMA Amendment Act (2005) requiring that regional and district plans must "give effect to" the RPS.
  • Iwi resource management issues identified through consultation with iwi and hapu during the Operative RPS review and through an analysis of iwi management plans (30KB, pdf) lodged with Bay of Plenty Regional Council.
  • Issues identified through consultation with stakeholders, industry groups, and territorial authorities during the review of the Operative RPS.
  • Research results from environmental investigations, compliance monitoring and state of the environment reporting by Bay of Plenty Regional Council and other resource management agencies.

Read more on the next Regional Policy Statement.