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Sunday, March 7, 2021

Senator Lavelle: Take Down Truck Signs Now

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State Senator Greg Lavelle has expressed outrage over the lack of notification he and his constituents received about the DelDOT rerouting of truck traffic to Rte. 48. Lavelle issued the following statement on his displeasure in being kept out of the loop on such an important decision, and reiterating his request that DelDOT take down the confusing and unsightly signs:

On October 4, I had the opportunity to attend a meeting at the Wilmington Christian School regarding the signage changes on Route 41 and 48. These changes were implemented by DelDOT in July and have effectively pushed significant truck traffic from Route 41 onto Route 48. It will come as no surprise that the residents of Route 48 are unhapp, and 90% plus of the 400 or more people at the meeting were disappointed in the decision.

I was livid when this first came to my attention in late July/early August due to the fact  I was not engaged by local officials or by DelDOT who participated in what I was told was a multi-year process that resulted in the changes. Other Representatives in the area were also not fully aware of what was happening.

In an email dated October 11 to DelDOT and local elected officials, the Route 48 Coalition reiterated their request for:

  1. The immediate removal of signs rerouting truck traffic.
  2. A study [to] be conducted to find an equitable, balanced solution to the problem in an open process which includes all stakeholders.

My response to their email follows:

Dear Gale and Coalition Members,

Thank you for your email and continued advocacy. I agree with you that the signs should be removed while a new, comprehensive and inclusive process is undertaken.

As I noted at the 4th meeting, and as I have told others on numerous occasions, I was never informed or contacted by DelDOT, Senator Blevins, Representative Williams or others concerning this proposal. I find this very disappointing as I did not have the opportunity to represent the constituents I was elected to serve on Route 41 or Route 48.

It is my understanding that neither Rep. Brady, Hudson nor Miro was aware of this either, but they can certainly speak for themselves.

I have been asked on more than one occasion, and was asked again last night, if it is normal/SOP that I would not be contacted and engaged by other legislators and departments of Delaware government on substantive projects like this. I have told people the regular practice is to reach out and engage and there was a failure — intentional or otherwise — to do that in this case.

Numerous speakers at the October 4th meeting, and others who have communicated to me on this issue, indicated that they do not want an “us vs. them” approach on this project. I certainly agree with that and point out that in this case the district I was elected to represent includes both “us and them” in it.

Again, I support your reasonable position and ask DelDOT to remove the signs and engage in a new and open process. 

Sincerely yours,

Greg Lavelle

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