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Ottawa Adresses Urban-Rural Divide

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When Ottawa was re-drawn to incorporate neighboring townships in 2001, the city that emerged was equivalent in size to all of New York's Clinton County. Roughly 90 percent of the new city's population resides in urban settings, while 90 percent of the land area remains rural. Centralization produced rural resentment that decisions were being made by a downtown bureaucracy which seemed culturally, and physically, remote. Responding to mounting frustrations, Ottawa Mayor Bob Chiarelli eventually called for a rural summit, which was held last week. Ottawa's City Council has followed up by earmarking two million dollars to fund summit-identified priorities. The two-day event wound up over the weekend. Lucy Martin filed this report.

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Reported by

Lucy Martin
Ottawa Correspondent

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