Is it possible that the people who said "we don't want them here" have not been made fully aware of the danger to the horses? They may also be thinking that there is somewhere else out of danger that they could be kept. And, in the way of the NIMBY folks, are blinding themselves to the real situation. Has anyone gotten the community together for a meeting and explained everything in a forum where the community could express their concerns? Surely this could be resolved. Then again, I deal with planning issues every day. I get NIMBY all the time. And BANANA (build absolutely nothing, anywhere, near anything). The most enraged neighbors I've ever talked to about a project were not upset about a 400-home subdivision wiping out oak trees and vernal pools, they were really ticked about a project that would result in THREE NEW HOUSES going up on a vacant lot in the middle of a developed residential area. No trees coming out, no other biological resources, nothing at all of concern. Except that it was in their backyard. The HORROR.
Oh, and having a horse myself I must say, I LOVE the smell of horse. Their manure doesn't smell to ME. I mean, come on, it's just digested grass/alfalfa (cows stink because of the high concentration of grain they get fed). Sure the urine can smell, but that can be managed. Horses are nice people. And they aren't terribly noisy. I think they make good neighbors.