Propane cannon task force meets Friday

The propane cannon task force has a limited time to come up with options for use of the devices.

Langley Propane Cannon Task Force will meet on Friday, March 1 at the Township hall, beginning at 2 p.m.

The task force, which was appointed by Township council, began to meet in September. It hosted a public information meeting on Jan. 17, and is to complete its work by March 29.

The public meeting attracted 98 attendees, as the issue of propane cannons has been a contentious one in many areas of the Township.

The task force will consider a report from Township staff on options to deal with propane cannons, which are used by farmers to scare off birds, at the meeting.

The report states that there are limited options available to the Township to deal with the cannons, due to the provincial Farm Practices Protection (right to farm) Act, which supersedes local bylaws. An outright ban on use of the propane cannons, as was advocated by many of the speakers at the Jan. 17 meeting, “is not a viable option,” the report states.

A unique bylaw taking into considerration the large number of horse farms in Langley is a possibility, the report states.

This could involve additional setbacks or a reduction in the frequency with which cannons are fired.

The horse industry has been lobbying to ban cannons, at least on farms adjacent to horse farms, because of the problems they cause for the animals. It points out that Langley is considered the Horse Capital of B.C. and horse farms are an integral part of the rural area.

The task force is chaired by school trustee Megan Dykeman.

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