SENATE BILL NO. 673
AS AMENDED BY SENATE AMENDMENT NO. 1
AND HOUSE AMENDMENT NO. 1
AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 16 OF THE DELAWARE CODE BY ADDING A NEW CHAPTER RELATING TO THE LITTERING OF PUBLIC OR PRIVATE PROPERTY AND THE DEPOSITING OF REFUSE IN NAVIGABLE WATERS.
WHEREAS, the increasing amounts of refuse of all kinds that are thrown onto Delaware highways and beaches and the public property of the state and the private property of its citizens are a nuisance which must be controlled by law; and
WHEREAS, such litter is not only unsightly but is also a source of injury to citizens of the state and to visitors; and
WHEREAS, it has been estimated that clearing such litter costs the state at least $500,000 a year; and
WHEREAS, the citizens of Delaware have the right to believe that their roads and highways as well as their property shall remain clear of litter.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Delaware (two-thirds of all members elected to each House thereof concurring therein):
Section 1. Amend Title 16 of the Delaware Code by adding a new act to be known as Act 16, which new Act shall read as follows:
"ACT 16. LITTER CONTROL LAW
§1601. Short Title.
This Act shall be known and may be cited as the Delaware Litter Control Law.
§1602. Declaration of Intent.
It is the intention of this Act to end littering on public or private property, including bodies of water, as a threat to the health and safety of the citizens of this state.
As used in this Act, unless the context clearly requires otherwise, the following words or phrases shall have the following meanings:
(a) Litter shall include all rubbish, waste material, refuse, cans, bottles, garbage, trash, debris, dead animals or other discarded materials of every kind and description.
(b) Public or private property shall include the right-of-way of any road or highway; any body of water or watercourse, or the shores or beaches thereof; any park, playground, building, refuge, or conservation or recreation area, any residential or farm properties, timberlands or forests.
§1604. Unlawful Activities.
It shall be unlawful for any person or persons to dump, deposit, throw or leave, or cause or permit the dumping, depositing, placing, throwing or leaving of litter on any public or private property of this state, or any waters in this state unless;
1. Such property is designated by the state or by any of its agencies or political subdivisions for the disposal of trash or litter, and such person is authorized by the proper public authority to use such property for such purpose.
2. Such litter is placed in a litter receptacle or container installed on such property.
3. Such person is the owner or tenant in lawful possession of such property or has first obtained consent of the owner or tenant in lawful possession, or unless the act is done under the personal direction of said owner or tenant, all in a manner consistent with the public welfare.
Any person violating the provisions of this Act, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction thereof shall be punished by a fine of not less than 100 dollars ($100.00) nor more than five hundred dollars ($500.00) for each violation; except that in the discretion of the court any such person may be directed by the judge of the court to pick up and remove from any public street or highway or public or private right-of-way, or public beach, stream bank, or public park any and all litter deposited thereon by anyone prior to the date of execution of sentence.
1. For the purposes of this Act the Justice of the Peace Courts shall have jurisdiction.
2. The court is hereby directed to make public the names of persons convicted of violating the provisions of this Act.
§1606. Prima Facie Evidence.
Whenever litter is thrown, deposited, dropped or dumped from any motor vehicle, boat, airplane or other conveyance in violation of this Act, it shall be prima facie
evidence that the operator of said conveyance shall have violated this Act and licenses to operate such conveyances may be suspended for a period not to exceed thirty (30) days together with, or in lieu of, other penalties for littering in the Delaware Code, unless littering from said vehicle is a first offense in which case the license shall not be suspended and the sanctions provided in § 1605 of this Act shall apply.
§1607. Receptacles to be Provided.
All public authorities and agencies having supervision of properties of this state are authorized, empowered and instructed to establish and maintain receptacles for the deposit of litter at appropriate locations where such property is frequented by the public, and to post signs directing persons to such receptacles and serving notice of the provisions of this Act, and to otherwise publicize the availability of litter receptacles and the requirements of this Act.
Section 2. If any provision of this Act, or its application to any person or circumstance if held invalid, the remainder of this Act, or the application of the provision to other persons or circumstances shall remain unaffected."
Approved July 22, 1976