The RMA Quality Planning Resource

The following example structures have been drawn up to mimic a table of contents that could be found within the plan itself (though less detailed as to heading wording and content). Page numbers have been replaced by explanatory comments for the purposes of this guidance note; in most instances actual provision headings are absent or abbreviated to save space.

Possible structure for a combined regional plan (all regional plans in the one document)

Structural component

Comments

Frontispiece

  • Official name of title of plan
  • Date notified/made operative
  • Declaration as to being a true copy and being operative [as appropriate]
  • Signatures of Chairperson and Chief Executive
  • Council seal [if appropriate]

Single page at the very front of the plan carrying information on what the plan is to be called, information as to which version of the plan this document is, and the legal status of the plan. The reverse side could carry publishing information and references to other key documents.

Contents Page

Key navigational tools for the plan, need to be easy to find so they are placed up front. There should be sufficient detail to demonstrate the plan structure and where key topics or provisions can be found.

Plan Purpose

  • Legislative requirement (mandate) for the plan
  • Functions of regional and district councils under the RMA (types of matters covered by the plan)
  • Strategic overview and linkages to other planning documents
  • Outline of plan structure

Provides the reader with a quick explanation as to the mandate for the plan, what it can cover by law, and how it fits in with other documents (Long Term Plans, RPS, other plans, s32 evaluation reports, monitoring reports). This section is considered useful but is not mandatory.

Definitions

Glossary [optional - see note regarding status]

Definition of key terms used in the objectives, policies and rules of the plan arranged alphabetically. A glossary of terms defined in legislation may precede or follow the definitions section. If a glossary is included be clear that it does not have the status of being part of the plan but is a resource provided for the benefit of readers (i.e. explanatory).

Issues Overview:

  • Description of region [optional]
  • Distribution of issues across region [optional]
  • Cross-boundary issues [optional]
  • Relationship between issues.

Short section outlining the origin of issues in the plan and how they interrelate. This section is considered useful but is not mandatory.

[Tangata Whenua]

[World View]

[Issues]

[Objectives]

[Policies]

Optional separate chapter for those councils that have chosen to have a chapter dealing specifically with tangata whenua values and concerns. This chapter could include either an overview of tangata whenua values and concerns that contains details as to how the plan manages these, or a more fulsome policy framework.

[Regional Policy Statement]

[Significant Issues For The Region]

[Objectives]

[Policies]

The RPS could be inserted in here for those councils that have chosen to combine their RPS and regional plans. The document must clearly identify that these are the provisions of the RPS.

Region-wide issues, objectives and policies:

Air

  • Issues
  • Objectives
  • Policies

Coastal

  • Issues
  • Objectives
  • Policies

Hazards

  • Issues
  • Objectives
  • Policies

Integration of infrastructure and land use

  • Issues
  • Objectives
  • Policies

Soil

  • Issues
  • Objectives
  • Policies

Water

  • Issues
  • Objectives
  • Policies

This section contains the policy framework for issues that are found throughout the region. Issues are grouped according to the resources or topics areas to which they related. Each resource or topic is arranged alphabetically. The topics shown are for example purposes only but do reflect regional council areas of responsibility.

The issues of this section should be the same, or a refinement of the issues notes in the 'Issues Overview’ section (if the plan contains that section).

Issues, objectives and policies related to certain districts, specific zones or areas [if any]

Issues Specific To Districts

Haumuri District

  • Issue
  • Objective
  • Policies

Wairaki District

  • Issue
  • Objective
  • Policies

Issues Specific To Management Areas

Tohatoha Geothermal Field Management Area

  • Issue: Extraction of water and geothermal energy
  • Objectives
  • Policies

This section contains the policy framework for issues that are limited in their geographic distribution and impact to discrete and identifiable areas of the region. These chapters can be left out of plan if there are no issues specific only to certain districts or management areas.

Following the 'general’ before 'specific’ principle, any issues related directly to individual districts are listed before issues that are related to regional council defined management areas or environments (on the assumption that the latter are smaller in scale).

The order in which districts or management areas are listed is alphabetical. Issues within are then listed according to the resource they relate to, which each resource also listed in alphabetical order.

Region -wide Rules

Air

  • Permitted
  • Controlled
  • Restricted Discretionary
  • Discretionary
  • Non-complying
  • Prohibited

Coastal

  • Permitted
  • Controlled
  • Restricted discretionary
  • Discretionary/Restricted Coastal Activities

Hazards

  • Permitted
  • Controlled
  • Restricted Discretionary
  • Discretionary
  • Non-complying
  • Prohibited

Integration of infrastructure and land use

  • Permitted
  • Controlled
  • Restricted Discretionary
  • Discretionary
  • Non-complying
  • Prohibited

Land

  • Permitted
  • Controlled
  • Restricted Discretionary
  • Discretionary
  • Non-complying
  • Prohibited

Soil

  • Permitted
  • Controlled
  • Restricted Discretionary
  • Discretionary
  • Non-complying
  • Prohibited

Water

  • Permitted
  • Controlled
  • Restricted Discretionary
  • Discretionary
  • Non-complying
  • Prohibited

This section of the plan contains rules for managing the issues that apply across the city or district. Rules are arranged under issue or topics alphabetically for ease of reference. Cross-references within rules link back to issues, objectives and policies as necessary.

(see notes regarding cross-references under this table)

District/Zone/area-specific Rules [if any]

Rules Specific To Certain Districts

Haumuri District

  • Permitted
  • Controlled
  • Restricted Discretionary
  • Discretionary
  • Non-complying
  • Prohibited

Wairaki District

  • Permitted
  • Controlled
  • Restricted Discretionary
  • Discretionary
  • Non-complying
  • Prohibited

Rules Specific To Management Areas

Tohatoha Geothermal Field Management Area

  • Permitted
  • Controlled
  • Restricted Discretionary
  • Discretionary
  • Non-complying
  • Prohibited

Zone or area-specific rules are grouped according to each geographic area they are specific to. All zones or areas are listed in alphabetical order to enable them to be found easily in tables of contents etc. The names shown in this document are examples only. Councils are able to select those that best reflect their city or district.

Schedules [or Appendices]

  • Schedule One: Airshed boundaries
  • Schedule Two: Minimum Flows and Water Allocation Tables
  • Schedule Three: Statutory Acknowledgments and deeds of recognition.
  • Schedule Four: Wetlands of Significance

Schedules or appendices may contain information that is too large, in a format that does not fit with the general format of the plan, or which provides assistance in understanding plan provisions. Copies of Statutory Acknowledgement could be inserted here for example.

Maps

  • Plan index map
  • Broad scale maps
    • Aquifer protection areas
    • Statutory acknowledgement areas
    • Tohatoha Geothermal Field Management Area
    • Water Catchment Boundaries
  • Small scale maps
    • CMA boundaries at river mouths
    • Wetlands of significance
  • Special policy areas
  • Structure plans
  • Index of main streets, roads, rivers, streams, lakes, and other key landmarks

 

Maps are in a separate volume to allow them to open alongside plan provisions and printed on paper of a different size.

Maps are arranged so that the largest scale and more general maps are place first and the smaller-scale and more detailed maps toward the back.

 

Notes as to cross-referencing

The combined plan model presents a number of challenges due its complexity. The format above means that prospective consent applicants will be looking at provisions from either a topic orientated or geographic location point perspective (or both).

Extensive use of explanatory notes and cross-references would most likely be required to:

  • ensure that those who are looking at provisions related to a particular district or management area are also referred back to region-wide provisions that apply.
  • that those who are looking at provisions in the region-wide chapters are also referred to any district-specific or management area provisions that also apply.

Possible structure for a single-topic regional plan (Example for Water)

Structural component

Comments

Frontispiece

  • Official name or title of plan
  • Date notified/made operative
  • Declaration as to being a true copy and being operative [as appropriate]
  • Signatures of Chairperson and Chief Executive
  • Council seal [if appropriate]

Single page at very front of plan carrying information on what the plan is to be called, information as to which version or the plan the document is, and the legal status of the plan. The reverse side could carry publishing information and references to other key documents.

Contents Page

Key navigational tools for the plan, need to be easy to find so they are placed upfront.

Plan Purpose

  • Legislative requirement (mandate) for the plan
  • Functions of regional (or unitary] councils under the RMA (types of matters covered by the plan)
  • Strategic overview and linkages to other planning documents

Provides the reader with a quick explanation as to the mandate for the plan, what it can cover by law, and how it fits in with other documents (Long Term Plan, RPS, other plans, s32 reports, monitoring   reports).

This section is considered useful but is not mandatory.

Definitions

Glossary [optional - see note as to status]

Definition of key terms used in the objectives, policies and rules of the plan arranged alphabetically. A glossary of terms defined in legislation may precede or follow the definitions section. If a glossary is included, be clear that it does not have the status of being part of the plan but is a resource provided for the benefit of readers (i.e. explanatory).

Issues Overview:

  • Description of resource [optional]
  • Distribution of issues around region or district [optional]
  • Cross-boundary issues [optional]
  • Relationships between issues

Short section outlining the origin of issues in the plan and how they interrelate.

This section is considered useful but is not mandatory.

[Tangata Whenua]

[World View]

[Issues]

[Objectives]

[Policies]

Optional separate chapter for those councils that have chosen to have a chapter dealing specifically with tangata whenua values and concerns. This chapter could include either an overview of tangata whenua values and concerns that contains details as to how the plan manages these, or a more fulsome policy framework.

Region-wide issues, objectives and policies:

Issue 1: Use of water adversely affecting ecosystems

Objective 1.1: Maintenance of biological diversity

Objective 1.2: Enabling sustainable use of water resource

Policy 1.1.1 Discharges into water

Policy 1.1.2 Minimum flows

Issue 2: Structures in waterways exacerbating or causing hazards

This section contains the policy framework for issues that are found throughout the region. The issues and provisions shown are for example purposes only and do not represent either the content required or the way provisions should be worded.

Issues, objectives and policies related to certain districts, specific zones or areas

Issue 3: Adverse effects of nutrient levels in Lake Paraharaha

Objective 3.1: Improving water quality in Lake Paraharaha

Policy 3.1.1 Capping of phosphorous levels

Issue 4: Water takes for horticulture in the Wherowai Water Management Area

This section contains the policy framework for issues that are limited in their geographic distribution and impact to discrete and identifiable areas of the region. The areas are arranged in alphabetical order.

Region-wide Rules

  • Permitted
    • Control of invasive aquatic plants
    • Discharge of stormwater
  • Controlled
    • Alterations to course of river with flow up to WWW
    • Utility structures on river or lake beds.
  • Restricted discretionary
    • Flood protection works
    • Taking of ground water
  • Discretionary
    • Alterations to course of river with flowWWW
    • Dams with a storage capacity exceeding XXX
  • Prohibited
    • Discharge to water from nuclearfacilities.

 

This section of the plan contains rules for managing the issues that apply across the city or district. Rules are arranged by activity class and then under issue or topics alphabetically for ease of reference. Cross-references within rules link back to issues, objectives and policies as necessary.

District/Zone/area-specific Rules

  • Rules for Lake Paraharaha
    • Permitted
    • Controlled
    • Restricted Discretionary
    • Discretionary
    • Non-complying
    • Prohibited
  • Rules for the Wherowai Water Management Area
    • Permitted
    • Controlled
    • Restricted Discretionary
    • Discretionary
    • Non-complying
    • Prohibited

Zone or area-specific rules are grouped according to each geographic area they are specific to. Each zone or area is listed in alphabetical order to enable them to be found easily in tables of contents etc. The names shown in this document are examples only. Councils should select those that best reflect their region or district.

Within each zone or area rules are set out according to the hierarchy of activity classes.

Cross-references within rules link back to issues, objectives and policies as necessary.

Schedules (or Appendices]

  • Schedule One: Minimum flows and Allocation Tables
  • Schedule Two: Natural Values For Surface Water
  • Schedule Three: Wetlands of Significance
  • Schedule Four: Statutory Acknowledgements

 

The schedules [or appendices] contain information that is too large for, or would interrupt, the flow of provisions if placed into policies and rules.

As with other provisions of the plan, they are arranged in alphabetical order as much as practicable. Those shown here are for example purposes only. It is expected that councils will choose their own on an 'as needed’ basis.

Maps and Structure Plans

  • Plan index map
  • Large-scale maps
    • Aquifer protection areas
    • Catchment boundaries
    • Lake Paraharaha Management Area
    • Statutory acknowledgement boundaries
    • Wherowai Water Management Area
  • Small-scale maps
    • CMA boundaries at river mouths
    • Wetlands of significance.
  • Special policy areas [optional]
    • Taipu River gravel extraction area
  • Index of main streets, roads, rivers, streams, lakes, and other key landmarks (text of names with map and grid reference numbers)

 

Maps are in a separate volume to allow them to open alongside plan provisions and printed on paper of a different size.

Maps are arranged so that the largest-scale and more general maps are placed first and the smaller-scale and more detailed maps toward the back.

  

Possible District Plan structure

Structural component

Comments

Frontispiece

  • Official name of title of plan
  • Date notified/made operative
  • Declaration as to being a true copy and being operative [as appropriate]
  • Signatures of Mayor and Chief Executive
  • Council seal [if appropriate]

Single page at the very front of the plan carrying information on what the plan is to be called, information as to which version of the plan this document is, and the legal status of the plan. The reverse side could carry publishing information and references to other key documents.

Contents Page

Key navigational tools for the plan, need to be easy to find so they are placed up front.

Plan Purpose

  • Legislative requirement (mandate) for the plan
  • Functions of district and city councils under the RMA (types of matters covered by the plan)
  • Strategic overview and linkages to other planning documents

Provides the reader with a quick explanation as to the mandate for the plan, what it can cover by law, and how it fits in with other documents (Long Term Plan, RPS, other plans, s32 evaluation reports, monitoring reports).

Definitions

Glossary [optional - see note as to status]

Definition of key terms used in the objectives, policies and rules of the plan arranged alphabetically. A glossary of terms defined in legislation may precede or follow the definitions section. If a glossary is included be clear that it does not have the status of being part of the plan but is a resource provided for the benefit of readers (i.e. explanatory).

Issues Overview:

  • Distribution of issues across the district [optional]
  • Relationship between issues.

Short section outlining the origin of issues in the plan and how they interrelate.

This section is considered useful but is not mandatory.

[Tangata Whenua]

[World View]

[Issues]

[Objectives]

[Policies]

Optional separate chapter for those councils that have chosen to have a chapter dealing specifically with tangata whenua values and concerns. This chapter could include either an overview of tangata whenua values and concerns that contains details as to how the plan manages these, or a more fulsome policy framework.

District-wide issues, objectives and policies:

  • Cultural and Built Heritage
    • Issues
    • Objectives
    • Policies
  • Infrastructure
    • Issues
    • Objectives
    • Policies
  • Natural Heritage
    • Issues
    • Objectives
    • Policies
  • Transportation
    • Issues
    • Objectives
    • Policies

This section contains the policy framework for issues that are found throughout the region. They are arranged alphabetically. The issues shown are for example purposes only.

Issues, objectives and policies related to specific zones or areas

  • Commercial A Zone
    • Issues
    • Objectives
    • Policies
  • Industrial Zone
    • Issues
    • Objectives
    • Policies
  • Natural Environment Zone
    • Issues
    • Objectives
    • Policies
  • Residential A Zone
    • Issues
    • Objectives
    • Policies
  • Residential B Zone
    • Issues
    • Objectives
    • Policies
  • Residential C Zone
    • Issues
    • Objectives
    • Policies
  • Rural A Zone
    • Issues
    • Objectives
    • Policies
  • Rural B Zone
    • Issues
    • Objectives
    • Policies

This section contains the policy framework for issues that are limited in their geographic distribution and impact to discrete and identifiable areas of the region.

District-wide Rules

  • Cultural and Built Heritage
    • Permitted
    • Controlled
    • Restricted Discretionary
    • Discretionary
    • Non-complying
    • Prohibited
  • Infrastructure
    • Permitted
    • Controlled
    • Restricted Discretionary
    • Discretionary
    • Non-complying
    • Prohibited
  • Natural Heritage
    • Permitted
    • Controlled
    • Restricted Discretionary
    • Discretionary
    • Non-complying
    • Prohibited
  • Transportation
    • Permitted
    • Controlled
    • Restricted Discretionary
    • Discretionary
    • Non-complying
    • Prohibited

This section of the plan contains rules for managing the issues that apply across the city or district. Rules are arranged under issue or topics alphabetically for ease of reference. Cross-references from rules link back to issues, objectives and policies as necessary.

Zone / area-specific Rules

  • Commercial A Zone
    • Permitted
    • Controlled
    • Restricted Discretionary
    • Discretionary
    • Non-complying
    • Prohibited
  • Industrial Zone
    • Permitted
    • Controlled
    • Restricted Discretionary
    • Discretionary
    • Non-complying
    • Prohibited
  • Natural Environment Zone
    • Permitted
    • Controlled
    • Restricted Discretionary
    • Discretionary
    • Non-complying
    • Prohibited
  • Residential A Zone
    • Permitted
    • Controlled
    • Restricted Discretionary
    • Discretionary
    • Non-complying
    • Prohibited
  • Residential B Zone
    • Permitted
    • Controlled
    • Restricted Discretionary
    • Discretionary
    • Non-complying
    • Prohibited
  • Residential C Zone
    • Permitted
    • Controlled
    • Restricted Discretionary
    • Discretionary
    • Non-complying
    • Prohibited
  • Rural A Zone
    • Permitted
    • Controlled
    • Restricted Discretionary
    • Discretionary
    • Non-complying
    • Prohibited
  • Rural B Zone
    • Permitted
    • Controlled
    • Restricted Discretionary
    • Discretionary
    • Non-complying
    • Prohibited

Zone or area-specific rules are grouped according to each geographic area they are specific to. Each zone or area are listed in alphabetical order to enable them to be found easily in tables of contents etc. The names shown in this document are examples only. Councils are able to select those that best reflect their city or district.

Schedules / Appendices

  • Schedule of designations
  • Schedule of heritage sites and items
  • Significant landscapes
  • Statutory Acknowledgements (if any)

The schedules (or appendices) contain information that is too large for, or would interrupt the flow of provisions if placed into policies and rules.

As with other provisions of the plan, they are arranged in alphabetical order as much as practicable. Those shown here are for example purposes only. It is expected that councils will choose their own on an 'as needed’ basis.

Maps and Structure Plans

  • Plan index map
  • Large scale maps
    • Maps coveting rural areas of district
    • Maps covering large surfaces of water (e.g. harbours)
  • Small scale maps
    • Residential areas
    • Commercial areas
    • Hazard maps
  • Special policy areas
    • Areas and sites subject to designations
  • Structure plans
    • Te Whakatu Residential Growth Area
    • Turewhenua Commercial Park
  • Index of streets, roads, and key landmarks (text with associated map number and grid reference)

 

Maps are in a separate volume to allow them to open alongside plan provisions and printed on paper of a different size.

Maps are arranged so that the largest-scale and more general maps are place first and the smaller-scale and more detailed maps toward the back.

  

Organising plan provisions

There are three principal ways in which RMA plan provisions can be grouped or arranged. Examples of the three types are set out below. Note that these examples do not take into account further delineation that may be associated with splitting provisions up into 'general’ and 'zone’ or 'area-specific’ chapters.

Grouping according to issues or topics

Grouping according to type of provision

Splitting rules from rest (issue-grouped example)

Issue 1

Objective 1.1
Objective 1.2

Policy 1.1.1
Policy 1.1.2
Policy 1.2.1
Policy 1.2.2

Rules:

1.1.1.1
1.1.1.2
1.1.2.1
1.1.2.2
1.2.1.1
1.2.1.2
1.2.2.1
1.2.2.2

Issue 2

Objective 2.1
Objective 2.2

Policy 2.1.1
Policy 2.1.2
Policy 2.2.1
Policy 2.2.2

Rules:

2.1.1.1
2.1.1.2
2.1.2.1
2.1.2.2
2.2.1.1
2.2.1.2
2.2.2.1
2.2.2.2

Issue 1
Issue 2

Objective 1.1
Objective 1.2
Objective 2.1
Objective 2.2

Policy 1.1.1
Policy 1.1.2
Policy 1.2.1
Policy 1.2.2
Policy 2.1.1
Policy 2.1.2
Policy 2.2.1
Policy 2.2.2

Rules:

1.1.1.1
1.1.1.2
1.1.2.1
1.1.2.2
1.2.1.1
1.2.1.2
1.2.2.1
1.2.2.2
2.1.1.1
2.1.1.2
2.1.2.1
2.1.2.2
2.2.1.1
2.2.1.2
2.2.2.1
2.2.2.2

Issue 1

Objective 1.1
Objective 1.2

Policy 1.1.1
Policy 1.1.2
Policy 1.2.1
Policy 1.2.2

Issue 2

Objective 2.1
Objective 2.2

Policy 2.1.1
Policy 2.1.2
Policy 2.2.1
Policy 2.2.2

Rules:

1.1.1.1
1.1.1.2
1.1.2.1
1.1.2.2
1.2.1.1
1.2.1.2
1.2.2.1
1.2.2.2
2.1.1.1
2.1.1.2
2.1.2.1
2.1.2.2
2.2.1.1
2.2.1.2
2.2.2.1
2.2.2.2

Grouping according to issues or topics

Advantages

  • Less cross-referencing required compared to other alternatives.
  • Easy to see flow from issue through to rules.

Disadvantages

  • May require an 'overview section’ or explanations to show linkages between issues.
  • The ability to quickly refer to all rules that may be applicable is lessened by having to read through objectives and policies in between.
  • The overall document structure is less compatible with 'general’ before 'specific’ organisation principle (though the flow of provisions under each issue is).

Grouping according to provision type

Advantages

  • Compatible with 'ordering the general before the specific’ principle used in legislation.
  • Provides good overview of issues and a chance to demonstrate the inter-relatedness of issues (as they are all located close together).
  • Rules are located together so consent applicants and those processing consents can quickly reference them without having to read through other, higher-level, provisions located in between.

Disadvantages

  • Requires a good numbering system and potentially detailed cross-referencing to show linkages between rules, policies, objectives and issues.

Splitting rules from issues, objectives, and policies

Advantages

  • Compatible with 'ordering the general before the specific’ principle used in legislation.
  • Less cross-referencing is required than when grouping according to provision type.
  • Enables the relationship between issues, objectives, and policies to be clearly seen.
  • Rules are all together so consent applicants and those processing consents can quickly reference them.

Disadvantages

  • Flow of policy from issues through to rules less obvious than in the 'Grouping by Issues’ approach.
  • Requires a good numbering system and a thorough cross-referencing between rules and policy.

Legislative drafting style - key points

The Law Commission's Report 35 Legislation Manual: Structure and Style (1996) contains useful material on matters of drafting style. The Parliamentary Counsel Office has incorporated material from this report in its own drafting manual and adopts many of the drafting practices and policies recommended by the Commission.

The Parliamentary Counsel Office considers that all legislation, whether primary or secondary, should seek to comply with the following criteria.

Good organisation of material

  • Material should be arranged in a logical order.
  • General provisions should be followed by specific provisions and exceptions.
  • Provisions that relate to the same subject should be grouped together.
  • Provisions should be arranged in temporal sequence.
  • Provisions that are significant should come before provisions of lesser importance.
  • Sections and clauses should be limited in the number of subclauses they contain. As a general rule, a clause should have no more than six subclauses.
  • Division into parts and the use of headings and subheadings breaks up a long document and aids comprehension.
  • Sections and clauses should be numbered.

Use of clear language

The drafting should be as simple as possible. It should also be precise so that the document has its intended effect. The instrument must be workable but at the same time drafted in language and in a style that ensures it can be readily understood by its readers. Clarity of drafting should encourage clarity and simplicity of policy.

  • Sentences should be short and well structured.
  • Sentences should not contain excessive embedded and relative clauses.
  • The active rather than the passive voice should be used.
  • Archaic language and expressions should be avoided.
  • Gender-neutral language should be used.
  • The drafting should be consistent. Words should be used in the same sense. If the sense is changed, this should be made clear.
  • Overuse of capitals should be avoided.
  • Propositions should be expressed in positive rather than negative terms.
  • Similar propositions should be expressed in similar language.
  • Repetition and unnecessary words should be avoided.
  • Excessive cross-references and qualifications should also be avoided.
  • Expressions in common or everyday use should be used wherever possible. Jargon should be avoided. However, technical terms will be necessary in legislation that deals with technical subject matter.
  • Paragraphs and subparagraphs can break up blocks of text but multiple paragraphs and subparagraphs, while having the appearance of clarity, can often involve several ideas or concepts and be difficult to understand.

The use of outline parts that give a reader an overview of an Act and that explain the scheme and key concepts in it may assist users. Graphics and diagrams that explain procedures and processes may also be useful aids. Including examples to explain the operation of complex or technical definitions or provisions may also be appropriate. The Interpretation Act 1999 now expressly recognises that this material may be referred to in ascertaining the meaning of legislation.

Extract from:

Legislation Advisory Committee (2001): Guidelines on Process & Content of Legislation, Legislation Advisory Committee, Wellington