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Ottawa City Council voted to join Rideau Ward with Goulbourn and Stittsville. Rideau with 12,000 will join a new Ward will have over 52,000. There will be more urban dwellers than rural residents in the new unnamed Ward, eliminating meaningful rural representation.
From the Rideau Rural Communities Association Inc.:
A heads up For Rural Residents of West Carleton, Goulbourn, Rideau, Osgoode and Cumberland
We need your help to preserve our rural communities! The addition of populous urban residential areas to each of the rural wards means there will be less rural resident votes in each ward than urban. This means urban interests will override rural ones in all City Wards. This means no Rural Councillors i.e. representation of rural interests and concerns on City Council.
On July 24, 2002, with the adoption of the new Ward Boundaries recommendations, Ottawa City Council voted to eliminate meaningful rural representation through the urbanization of each of the rural wards. Rideau Ward will be amalgamated with Goulbourn and this includes urban Stittsville. There will be more urban dwellers than rural residents in the new unnamed Ward. We go from one local representative to none. Rideau had 12,000 residents, including Manotick. The new Ward will have over 52,000. How would anyone represent that many people spread over the whole south west of Ottawa? Your school trustees will represent schools 20 miles away. Decisions on recreation facilities will be made to serve those in urban areas. The current spate of bylaws does not reflect rural reality re the concern for the future of our Rural Communities.
The projected size of Osgoode Ward under the new structure will increase from 18,800 to 50,000 people by 2009, making it one of the most populous wards in the City of Ottawa. The majority of the Ward's population will reside in the newly annexed Riverside South and Findlay Creek suburban developments, diluting an already fragile rural voice at City Council.
Glen Shortliffe, in his report on "Local Government Reform in the Regional Municipality of Ottawa-Carleton" stated that there should be no reconsideration of rural representation until the completion of two full terms of City Council. The Transition Board recognized the unique aspects of Ottawa's rural communities and insisted upon the structuring of 5 rural wards. The Ontario Rural Council, in their October 2001 The Rural Campaign stated, "Increasingly elected officials and provincial decision-makers bring the suburban experience to the table. Because rural Ontario is diverse, it is a challenge for non-rural representatives to fully appreciate and understand the wide-ranging degrees of 'rurality'. The situation is critical as the 'divide' between urban and rural experience grows, and rural influence declines.”
Increasingly elected officials and provincial decision-makers bring the suburban experience to the table. Because rural Ontario is diverse, it is a challenge for non-rural representatives to fully appreciate and understand the wide-ranging degrees of 'rurality'. The situation is critical as the 'divide' between urban and rural experience grows, and rural influence declines.?
Rideau Rural Communities Association Inc,
Box 384, North Gower, ON K0A 2T0
West Carleton Rural Association
PO Box 95 Dunrobin, ON K0A 1T0
Osgoode Rural Communities Association
PO Box 242, Metcalfe, ON K0A 2P0
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