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A Globe and Mail investigation of 766 recreation stimulus projects shows how Ottawa is divvying up the money in the electoral battleground of Ontario.

Why we looked at RInC

The Recreational Infrastructure Canada Program (RInC) pays for the building or renovation of playgrounds, rinks, arenas, playing fields and pools. These neighbourhood amenities have a direct impact on many voters.

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The information is readily available. Most stimulus infrastructure spending has been reported by Ottawa in a patchwork form through press releases, sometimes across a variety of departments.

Why choose Ontario?

It is a key electoral battleground - its distribution of seats reflects the bigger picture (outside Quebec) with the Conservatives holding a minority lead of 51 out of the 106 seats. A number of seats have changed hands in recent elections or are thought to be up for grabs.

Data for Ontario RInC projects are currently more readily available than information regarding other provinces.

Our methodology

1. The Globe and Mail obtained from Industry Canada a spreadsheet listing Recreational Infrastructure Canada Program (RInC) spending for Ontario.

2. The projects were mapped using the federal stimulus spending website (actionplan.gc.ca).

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3. A modified version of Google Earth was then used to determine the electoral district of each project.

The five ridings that received the most cash

Amount of funding

Riding

Party

MP

Margin of victory

$6,755,843

Kenora

Conservative

Greg Rickford

2,051 votes

$4,771,716

Kitchener-Waterloo

Conservative

Peter Braid

17 votes

$4,726,789

Oxford

Conservative

Dave MacKenzie

14,744 votes

$4,057,833

Ottawa Centre

NDP

Paul Dewar

5,141 votes

$4-million

Essex

Conservative

Jeffrey Watson

5,635 votes

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