Editor: On Feb. 4, at the council meeting where the Glenval Organics composting facility proposal for Fort Langley was discussed, council unanimously rejected the idea.
I am writing because of a remark made by Councillor Grant Ward — “Our citizens have to be happy.”
Following a town hall meeting on Jan. 17, where more than 100 people were in attendance, many spoke or later submitted written responses. There was near-universal demand for banning the use of propane cannons and their cousins, the orchard pistol and screecher.
No one from the blueberry industry spoke nor submitted a written response, despite a well-publicized request to Township residents, including calls from the B.C. Blueberry Council to their more than 800 member farms.
If the cannon is such an essential part of the blueberry industry, why will no residents stand up and defend the practice? The B.C. Blueberry Council’s own statistics indicate that as of 2010, some 50 property owners controlled the estimated 125 blueberry farms in the Township.
Since 2010, there has been a dramatic increase in the number s of new plantings and with it a corresponding increase in complaints. Since the Township will not receive complaints about cannons, but refers them directly to the Blueberry Council, Bylaw Enforcement can state they have never received a complaint. True, but ludicrous.
If Councillor Ward’s comments are to be believed, it would suggest that since the citizens must be happy and those that spoke and wrote in are not, does that mean the council can make us happy? If this is the case, be sure to attend the council meeting on Apr. 8, when the Agricultural Advisory Council recommendations on the cannon issues will be presented to Township council.
Watch for the classic move to “refer to staff for a report,” as this will simply mean endless delays and another summer of increased cannon blasting in the Horse Capital of B.C.