News from State Senator

Bryant Richardson

Serving the 21st Senatorial District

March 9, 2023

Litter problem solutions are

long overdue in Delaware

The following letter is from Nan Zamorski of Seaford, who added that she is involving the Delaware State Waste Authority in this year's Recycled Cardboard Boat Regatta and educational displays as part of our Reclaim Our [Nanticoke] River.

Dear Senator Richardson,

Thank you for being the elected official to bring up our citizen’s concern (and disgust) about the trash around Seaford, in Sussex County, Kent County and New Castle County. It is a terrible problem and many editorials have been written about it. You asked for citizen input, so I’d like to add my thoughts.

Having grown up in Seaford, I can affirmatively say that it hasn’t always been like this. Trash has been a problem for recent years but Covid has definitely accelerated the mess, I’m assuming with all the take-out and fear of touching anything! 

It’s disgusting to see and live around and is a terrible reflection of who we are as citizens of Delaware.  

But Maryland isn’t like this. Maryland’s pride shows up even in the way they landscape around their convenience stores and gas stations.  

We have those same stores, but ours are drowning in trash and barren of any pleasing, even shade-bearing landscaping. 

Throughout my education here in Seaford, we were always encouraged to be part of different groups, clubs, teams and to be good citizens with high standards. 

To ‘get involved’ and being part of the community was ‘the thing to do’ and prepared us for our futures. (Most of our local leaders all come from this background.) 

I’m concerned that mentality is not being presented or encouraged in today’s schools or at home. 

I believe citizens need to start taking an active role in terms of setting the example of what should be done (like picking up trash rather than stepping over it) and speaking up when one observes someone littering (unfortunately due to gun violence, make sure one is in a safe setting).

So, to help our situation now, having five-cent return on bottles/cans is an easy thing to start. I used to collect bottles as a kid for the deposit. Many New England states have this and is quite the success. This also puts some responsibility back on the manufacturer, like we used to do.

Increasing the fines for littering and installing cameras in high-litter areas are also good ideas and long overdue.  

Prompt follow-up is required with the appropriate punishment such as suspension of driver’s licenses, fines and/or requirement to do litter patrol. 

Having work-release programs for prisoners is also good, but that doesn’t change the littering mentality. 

Having volunteer groups do more is fine, but they are mostly the groups doing everything now. All citizens have to have some ‘skin in the game’ such as making Litter Patrol a part of Community Service.

I was preparing an editorial about our state’s phenomenal free recycling program at our local landfill when I read your request for input of our litter problem. 

Much of this litter is plastic and glass bottles, and aluminum cans which can be simply dropped off free of charge. (The litterers are driving around anyway.) 

Our landfill even recycles Styrofoam which few states do, along with oil, batteries, cardboard paper and electronics. All that take-out Styrofoam packaging can simply be washed out and dropped off.

Our home waste handlers also pick up mixed recyclables right at our driveways, which is a wonderful service. The problem they are encountering is that people continue to put recyclables in plastic bags and add trash for good measure, which contaminates the whole load, forcing it to go to the landfill.  

In conclusion, much of our waste is the result of our disposable mindset and the mindset that someone else will do it. 

This is a problem of the United States; it’s not like this in most countries. 

If we each step up and do our part, set an example and speak up for what is right/what is wrong, our society as a whole will improve. 

It’s time for good citizens to set the record straight with this and so many of our society’s ills.

I have received other communications and will continue to follow up to find a way to clean up our state. Send your suggestions for helping to solve the litter problem to

Survey Says: Delawareans Overwhelmingly Oppose Zero-Emission Vehicle Standards Mandate

Up to this point, opposition to Governor Carney’s and the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control’s (DNREC) electric vehicle mandate has primarily been anecdotal. Hundreds of you wrote to DNREC expressing your concerns and many more have told us either via email, phone, or verbally, that you do not support an executive branch regulation banning the sale of new gasoline or diesel-fueled automobiles.

We now have empirical data stating the overwhelming majority of Delawareans DO NOT support this mandate. In February, Ragnar Research Partners conducted a statewide poll of registered voters asking what their opinion was of the proposal and the results are eye-opening.

73% of respondents are opposed, including 82% of Republicans, 77% independent or unaffiliated voters, and 64% of Democrats. Support peaked at 20% among these groups. Only 15% of respondents living in Wilmington support the mandate.

It is abundantly clear that the citizens of Delaware across the political spectrum do not want this. We call on Governor Carney and Secretary Garvin to immediately scrap their proposal, and for the governor to rescind his executive order tying us to California’s destructive regulations.

Your voice can still be heard. If you haven't already, please contact Governor John Carney (, 302-577-8154) and DNREC Secretary Shawn Garvin (, 302-739-9001) and tell them you oppose their mandate. Be sure to also include your local legislators.

Click here to view the entire survey:


DART will be holding their second open house hiring event on Saturday, March 11th from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. This event will take place at Milford Central Academy - 1021 North Walnut Street.

411 Legislative Ave, Dover, DE 19901