State lawmakers introduce legislation to address littering in N.C.

North Carolina

WASHINGTON, N.C. (WNCT) — Many people love North Carolina’s natural beauty but they don’t love how others are treating it.

If you look along a highway or street in Eastern North Carolina, you’re likely to see trash and lots of it. North Carolina lawmakers may have a plan to handle the growing garbage problem.

That plan is House Bill 100. Officials are finalizing the language but it would give rural sheriffs money to pay for enforcement and clean-up efforts and boost existing anti-litter programs. They’ll work with the state’s Department of Transportation to consider contractors for cleanup efforts.

Another big part of the bill is making littering more expensive. Tossing your trash could bring a fine ranging from $200 to $4,000. Lawmakers say this is a problem we can all help solve.

“Our state’s too beautiful to have this problem, and it’s a problem that we can actually control but we need the entire community to be on board to help us,” says NC State Rep. John Bell. 

(Ariana Kraft, WNCT photo)

Bell also said joining local “adopt a highway” campaigns would help anti-litter efforts. 

There’s also a way to drop a dime if you see someone leaving a mess.

“We have a link on our homepage to the North Carolina Department of Transportation Swat-A- litterbug program where folks, if they see somebody throwing trash out of a vehicle, can report that and DOT follows up on that,” Beaufort County Manager Brian Alligood said.

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