On October 1, 2005 the village of Miyamori from Kamihei District merged with the city to create the new city of Tono. As of this creation, the city has an estimated population of 32,346 and a density of 39.12 persons per km². The total area is 825.62 km². Municipal elections were held following the merger in which Toshiaki Honda was re-elected to serve as mayor of the new Tono.
Today, one can still visit a few preserved Magariya, L-shaped houses with a thatched roof which were shared by a farming family and their horses. The most famous, the Chiba Family Magariya, was home to a family of 25, along with 20 horses.
Several of these tales involve the Kappa, mischievous water sprites. A legendary location in Tono is the Kappa-buchi, a water stream where kappas are said to live.
The mascot of the city, Karin-chan, is a cute kappa holding a bellflower. She is usually depicted walking in front of a Magariya.
Tono will be a major stop on the Kamaishi Expressway, which is currently under construction. As of 2005, this expressway, which should eventually link the coast to the Tohoku Expressway in Hanamaki, only reaches to Tōwa.
There are 12 train stations in the municipality, all on the JR Kamaishi Line: Iwanebashi, Miyamori, Kashiwagidaira, Masuzawa, Arayamae, Iwate-Futsukamachi, Ayaori, Tōno, Aozaki, Iwate-Kamigō, Hirakura and Ashigase. At the heart of the city, Tōno Station is also the principal bus station. Most festival parades proceed on the street ahead of the station.
The city also operates 11 elementary schools: Aozasa, Ayaori, Kamigō, Masuzawa, Miyamori, Otomo, Tassobe, Tōno, Tōno North, Tsuchibuchi and Tsukimoushi.
As the number of students is going down steadily, some of these schools will likely be merging or closing in the near future.
Tono is also twinned with three Japanese cities:
In 1990, the high schools of Tono and the Chattanooga School for the Arts & Sciences (CSAS) in Chattanooga, Tennessee were paired by School Partners Abroad to establish an exchange program. Near the end of every Japanese school year (in March), a delegation of Tōno high-schoolers visits Chattanooga, and reciprocally, a delegation from CSAS visits Tono every summer. The city of Tono has embraced this exchange and organizes a delegation of junior high school students which visits CSAS and the Chattanooga School for the Liberal Arts (CSLA) a few weeks before the high schoolers.