Submitters from opposing sides hope Horizons Regional Council will sit down with them and find an agreement on intensive farming rather than dragging the matter through hearings.
Intensive farming rules are included in the council's controversial One Plan.
Submissions on Proposed Plan Change 2, which deals with nutrient leaching from intensive farming, have been summarised on the council's website. There were 87 of them.
There are two changes proposed. First, to increase maximum nitrogen leaching permitted, bringing it in line with new findings and a new version of the Overseer modelling tool.
Fish & Game was one of the submitters, and Wellington region manager Phil Teal supports that change. He said it was just a change of wording, like moving from 30 miles per hour to 50km per hour.
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The second change would give farmers who can't meet the new figures the chance to get consent anyway, provided they make other changes that reduce their environmental footprint.
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That's where Fish & Game wants to narrow down the opportunities.
"We want to try and work with the council to define a consenting pathway which is still going to achieve the outcome of reducing nitrogen leaching. If it's too open they will be issuing consents and not addressing the issue we took them to the Environment Court for [in 2017]," Teal said.
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Now that submissions are in, he's hoping the council will talk to submitters and decide what direction to head in.
"I'm optimistic that the parties get around the table to come up with a solution. It's better than going to court," he said.
Federated Farmers Rangitīkei-Manawatū president Richard Morrison agrees more talk could resolve the situation.
"There's been a massive transition in agriculture. Why not have a good consultative process with farmers, finding out how we can carry on with that journey?"
The farmers' march on Parliament on November 14, ostensibly about the One Billion Trees programme, signalled farmer dissatisfaction.
"I think it's just a feeling that farmers aren't being listened to," Morrison said.
The proposed plan change received submissions from iwi and hapū, farmers, growers, local authorities, fertiliser companies, agriculture bodies and environment groups.
Local authorities that discharge treated wastewater to land were concerned about how it would affect them.
Iwi and hapū wanted more cultural consideration, more inclusion in decision making and more care for water quality.
Dairy NZ, Federated Farmers, Horticulture NZ, Beef + Lamb NZ, the two big fertiliser co-operatives and Potatoes NZ all made long and technical submissions. Other submitters supported their views.
About 40 submissions, mainly from commercial vegetable growers, used the same words. They supported good management practice and asked for provisions that would allow existing areas of vegetable growing to move onto different land, allowing for crop rotation and leased land arrangements.
Seven submitters wanted the plan change completely scrapped, and three supported it in its entirety.
Plan Change 2 is open for further submissions (in support of or opposition to the submissions already made) until December 3.