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In generic terms and in practical application within Canada, a metropolitan municipality is an urban local government with partial or complete consolidation of city and county services. The former Municipality of Metropolitan, 1954-1998, was created by partial amalgamation of the City of Toronto with neighbouring towns and townships in southerly York County, from which the metropolitan municipality was then extracted. Each jurisdiction retained a degree of local autonomy - like the boroughs of New York City, and the cities, towns and boroughs of Greater London; while the Metropolitan government replaced the old county government and supervised metro-wide services, such as police, fire and ambulance.
Conversely, a rural area (or a suburban area flanked mostly by rural areas) in which county and municipal functions are wholly or partially consolidated is a regional municipality rather than a metropolitan municipality. As with metropolitan municipalities, sub-regional communities - cities, villages, townships - within the regional municipality retain a degree of local autonomy, with the regional government focusing mostly on shared public services (police, drinking water, etc.).