Rural affairs office and contacts
The role of the Rural Affairs Office
- To monitor and support issues affecting rural Ottawa ensuring that current and emerging rural issues are a prime focus of City staff and Council.
- To facilitate a productive relationship between the City and its rural citizens by assessing the impact of the City’s rural policies, by-laws and programs and negotiating change.
- To establish links with provincial and federal governments and to keep City officials informed of developments in legislative and policy efforts.
- Advocates for the rural perspective in accordance with City Council’s direction.
The Rural Affairs Office also supports the implementation of solutions identified at the Rural Summit (in 2005 and 2008), and the work of the Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee.
In particular, the Office is focusing its attention on the priorities identified through the Rural Summit:
- Access, Communication and Consultation
- Policy issues
- Rural business
Contacts and resources
Contact the City of Ottawa
General Inquiries: 3-1-1 (613-580-2400)
Contact the Rural Affairs Office
The Rural Affairs Office is situated at Ottawa City Hall
110 Laurier Avenue West
For inquiries relating to rural issues, contact:
Email: Rural Affairs Office at firstname.lastname@example.org
Rural affairs office email distribution list
Stay informed about City services, public consultations, funding opportunities and other topics affecting rural Ottawa. To be added to the Rural Affairs Office distribution list, send an e-mail to email@example.com.
- Provide your name, e-mail address, if you represent a specific organization, and what part of the City of Ottawa you live in.
- Receive regular e-mail updates with information affecting you.
- Subscribers may ask at any time for their name to be removed from the list.
Contact your rural councillor
Client service centres
You can also contact the City by visiting any of our Client Service Centres including locations in Kinburn, Metcalfe and North Gower. Please refer to days and hours of operation specific to rural locations.
Rural website directory
- Agri-Food Management Institute
- Farm & Food Care Ontario
- Farm Grant (property tax deferral)
- Farm Safety Association
- 4-H Ontario
- National Farmers Union - Ontario
- Ontario Federation of Agriculture
- Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA)
- Ontario Pesticide Education Centre
- L'Union des cultivateurs franco-ontariens
- Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee (ARAC)
- All Terrain Vehicles (ATVs)
- Animal Care and Control
- Ball Diamond Booking
- Building Permits
- Burn Permits
- Business Improvement Area
- Call Centre (3-1-1)
- Client Service Centres
- Community Associations
- Community Centre Contacts
- Conservation Authorities
- Community Resource Centres
- Economic Development
- Elected Officials
- Emergency Preparedness and Management
- Employment and Financial Assistance
- Events and Attractions
- Farmers' Markets
- Beechwood Market
- Carp Farmers’ Market
- Constance Bay Community Market
- Cumberland Farmers’ Market
- Farmers’ Markets Ontario
- Kanata Farmers’ Market
- Main Street Farmers’ Market
- Manotick Farmers’ Market
- Metcalfe Farmers’ Market
- North Gower Farmers’ Market Association
- Ottawa Farmers’ Market (Barrhaven, Lansdowne, Orléans, Westboro)
- Ottawa Markets
- Ottawa Organic Farmers’ Market
- Farming – see agriculture
- Fire Services
- Land Use Planning
- Leaf and Yard Waste
- Livestock Valuation
- Local Food
- Municipal Drains
- Parking Tickets
- Planning (Land Use)
- Property Taxes
- Provincial Offences Court
- Public Consultations
- Public Health
- Public Skating
- Public Swimming
- Recreation Programs
- Recreation Associations
- Road Repairs
- Rural Affairs Office
- Rural Association Partnership Program (RAPP)
- Rural Community-Building Grant Program (RCBGP)
- Rural Ontario Institute
- Rural Summit
- Septic Systems
- Severance (Land)
- Signage - Community and Business
- Signage - Farm
- Snow Removal
- Solid Waste
- Sportsfield Booking
Stay informed: Rural Connections
Stay informed about City services, public consultations, funding opportunities and other topics affecting rural Ottawa. To be added to the Rural Affairs Office distribution list, please fill out the eSubscriptions sign up form.
- Receive regular email updates with information affecting you.
- Subscribers may ask at any time for their name to be removed from the list.
Rural Summit 2005 Initiatives
The City of Ottawa’s first Rural Summit was held November 15 and 19, 2005, to address the results of the City’s 2004 Citizen Satisfaction Survey, which identified that Ottawa’s rural residents were significantly less satisfied with municipal services than urban residents.
The Summit focused on the rural–urban relationship and strengthening public satisfaction in rural areas. Six major categories were reviewed: access, communication and consultation; governance; service issues; policy issues; agriculture; and business issues.
Feedback and suggestions received from Rural Summit participants resulted in many improvements and new initiatives for rural Ottawa, including:
- Established a Rural Affairs Office and hired the City’s first Rural Affairs Officer
- Facilitated broadband internet access for all rural communities and toll-free calling across Ottawa
- Launched the Rural Connections website to act as a “portal” for rural Ottawa residents, including the Rural Events and Attractions page to advertise and promote rural Ottawa non-profit events
- Developed specialized training for frontline staff regarding rural issues
- Made City contracts more accessible to rural companies
- Enhanced the role of the Agricultural and Rural Affairs Standing Committee to provide Council with advice on Ottawa’s rural economy and issues affecting rural residents
- Re-instated the Rural Issues Advisory Committee
- Targeted consultation for the Rural Settlement Strategy, building upon the work of the Rural Summit, and look closely at land-use matters, such as village growth, country lot subdivisions, rural services, natural environment and resource protection
- Created the Rural Wetlands Stakeholder Group to resolve landowners’ and community concerns concerning wetland identification and designation
- Launched the directional farm signage program to help urban customers find and buy locally grown food.
- Appointed local farmers to the position of livestock valuator. City By-Law Officers previously carried out this position.
- Established City-Centre Farmers’ Market at Lansdowne Park
- Approved a new grant program to offset the cost of building permit fees to Ottawa farmers for any building or structure needed to conform to the provincial Nutrient Management Act
- Established the Rural Association Partnership Program to assist with funding of projects benefitting rural Ottawa for fairs, farmers’ markets and business organizations
- Established a Buy Local campaign for the City’s agricultural products by creating and promoting the Savour Ottawa brand
- Created a Home-based Business Guide to assist entrepreneurs looking to start a home-based business
- Increased investment in rural road and ditch maintenance
- Improved relationships between rural community associations and recreation providers
Rural Summit II 2008 initiatives
The second Rural Summit — “Building on Success” — was held on April 8, 2008. Rural Summit II was an opportunity for rural residents and representatives of rural organizations from across Ottawa to reconvene to discuss ways of further improving networking and continue to build on the strengths of our rural communities.
The process began months before with extensive community consultations to discuss issues of interest to rural stakeholders. Working Groups, composed of residents who had volunteered their services during the community consultations, were then formed.
During facilitated sessions held at Rural Summit II, participants reviewed the “Options for Solutions” developed by the Working Groups, and individually voted on their priorities for action.
Suggestions were grouped into four categories: governance; rural services; infrastructure, by-laws, permits; and processes. This led to many improvements and new initiatives for rural Ottawa, including:
- Continued improvements to road and ditch maintenance programs
- Significantly updated the Rural Connections website to improve internal and external contact information in a Rural Website Directory, provide links to service delivery standards for road and sidewalk maintenance, and more
- Revised the Directional Farm Sign application and review process
- Improved and expanded the Rural Connections monthly news updates and ensured that all interested residents, rural community associations and rural media organizations receive the information for further dissemination
- Installed improved Community Signage in several villages in cooperation with local associations
- Collaborated with Just Food to improve available information promoting local agriculture producers
- Continued working with By-law Services to ensure active consultation of rural residents on new by-law regulations
- Established booths at four rural fairs (Navan, Richmond, Carp, Metcalfe) to ensure a more active approach to public outreach
- Created the “Wildlife Strategy Working Group” to establish policies and procedures for dealing with wildlife issues, as well as improved information on Rural Connections website
- Commissioned Senior Services in Rural Ottawa report and began working with three different community committees in rural Ottawa to assist with Senior’s issues
- Continued working with City Municipal Drainage, local conservation authority, provincial and federal governments to improve timeframes for dealing with municipal drain issues
- Coordinated Office of Emergency Management “Train the Trainer” sessions for residents, with a specific emphasis on rural issues
- Improved communications with the City’s 3-1-1 team to ensure up to date information sharing on rural issues.