Permanent daylight saving time in the United States
This article needs to be updated.March 2020)(
The Uniform Time Act was passed in 1966 to define a uniform observance of time for the whole country. The Act included setting when to begin and end daylight saving time. The Uniform Time Act also permits states to choose whether they want to observe daylight saving time or remain on standard time permanently all year without any legislative approval from the federal congress. However, the act does not permit states the option to remain on daylight saving time permanently all year. A change in federal law is necessary to allow states to choose whether they want to observe daylight saving time permanently all year. Many states have now moved forward state bills, resolutions, and referenda to indicate whether they want to observe daylight saving time permanently year-round once federal law permits them to do so.
As a work around to the Uniform Time Act, Delaware and most states in New England (New Hampshire, Maine, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and Connecticut) have state bills proposing the adoption of year-round “Atlantic Standard Time,” which is the time zone that lies to the east of Eastern Standard Time, and then opt out of observing daylight saving. This would be the equivalent of observing daylight saving time year-round for the Eastern time zone. The benefit of this option is that it would not need a congressional vote, instead these state proposals could be approved by the federal Department of Transportation. Similarly, Washington state enacted a bill for year-round DST pending congressional approval but also has an alternative bill that could be enacted if congress does not act where it would enact year-round observance of Mountain Standard Time (instead of Pacific Standard Time) without daylight saving time.
A number of other states have also proposed bills to enact year-round standard time for their current time zone. Many of these bills have failed since current research does not support there to be many benefits to year-round standard time observance. The most commonly cited benefits for abandoning the time switch to standard time includes: traffic safety, economic increases, and energy usage reductions. With the extra hour of daylight in winter months, this would eliminate an increase in traffic accidents observed immediately after the time switch. Another commonly cited benefit includes, the economic gains observed by shoppers and those dining out after work in the summer months, continuing into the winter months. With more people going out to public venues and others going home after the work-day but not using lighting, there should be a reduction in energy usage with the extra hour of daylight in the evenings.
Many people believe that daylight saving time was first created for agricultural or interstate commerce purposes, but it was really started by Germany and France during World War I in an effort to save coal by reducing energy consumption with a longer day. Today, the reality is that this reduction in energy consumption benefit is needed just as much if not more during the winter months than the summer months. In 2018, the European Commission performed a public survey and discovered that 84 percent of European citizens were in favor of discontinuing daylight saving time switches. The commission then proposed ending daylight saving time changes as early as this 2019. However, the conclusion of the European commission report only indicated that member states should decide whether to use their current standard-time during winter months or select a different standard-time that aligns to their current summer month's time which would equate to remaining on daylight-saving time year round.
The Sunshine Protection Act of 2019 has been introduced in the Senate by Senator Marco Rubio (R) of Florida. The Act would create permanent daylight-saving time for all of the current times zones across the whole country. The Act does this by amending the time offsets by 1-hour for each of the standard time zones in use in the US which equates to the current daylight saving time offsets. It is currently co-sponsored by thirteen senators including Senator Patty Murray (D) of Washington state where a bill has already been signed into law to enact permanent DST for the state pending federal legislative approval. The issue of permanent DST is one of the very few issues these days that is truly bipartisan. Both Republicans and Democrats alike seem to be in favor of the idea with broad support across the country in many states. President Trump has even endorsed permanent DST on Twitter in March 2019 by stating, "Making Daylight Saving Time permanent is O.K. with me!" However, as of May 2019, the bill has not been taken to the Senate floor for a vote and is currently in review by the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation.
|No Action on Permanent-DST or attempted to pass permanent Standard Time|
|States with Bills or Referendums already passed for permanent DST|
|States with Bills or Referendums pending a vote to move to permanent DST|
|States with Bills or Referendums that failed to pass permanent DST|
|Alabama||Senate passed permanent DST resolution 2018|
|Alaska||Bill introduced||Proposal to put the whole state on Pacific Standard Time year-round instead of using the current Alaska Standard time with DST changes.|
|Arizona||Does not use DST|
|Arkansas||House passed permanent DST resolution 2019||Requires permanent DST in bordering states (Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, Tennessee, and Texas) before taking effect.|
|California||Bill Introduced||Ballot proposition passed in November 2018 for permanent DST, leading to the introduction of a bill in December 2018. It passed the Assembly unanimously but stalled in the Senate.|
|Colorado||Ballot Referendum Introduced|
|Connecticut||Bill for year-round AST pending|
|Delaware||Permanent DST bill signed 2019||Law requires that Maryland, New Jersey and Pennsylvania change to AST also.|
|Florida||Permanent DST bill signed 2018||The bill is known as the "Sunshine Protection Act" and would move all of Florida (including the panhandle that is currently in the central time zone) into permanent DST.|
|Georgia||Bill introduced to hold non-binding referendum|
|Hawaii||Does not use DST|
|Idaho||2019 bill for permanent DST failed|
|Illinois||Bill passed in state Senate|
|Iowa||Bills introduced in House and Senate, passing committees.|
|Kansas||Bill introduced to end DST but was referred to the state Committee on Federal and State Affairs with no current action taking place.|
|Kentucky||Bill introduced in state House||Resolution passed state Senate, introduced in state House.|
|Louisiana||Bills introduced in state House|
|Maine||Permanent DST bill enacted||Bill enacted as law without governor's signature. Requires the state to observe Eastern Daylight Saving Time year-round if U.S. Congress authorizes states to do so and if all states in Eastern time zone and DC observe Eastern Daylight Time year-round.|
|Maryland||Bill for permanent DST pending|
|Massachusetts||Bill for year-round AST pending|
|Mississippi||Bill for permanent DST failed|
|Nebraska||Bill Introduced||LB 1015 introduced in January 2020 |
|Nevada||Legislature passed permanent DST resolution 2019|
|New Hampshire||Bill for year-round AST pending|
|New Jersey||Bill introduced|
|New Mexico||Bill for permanent DST failed|
|New York||Bills introduced to state Senate|
|North Carolina||Bill Introduced|
|North Dakota||Bill for permanent DST failed|
|Oregon||Permanent DST bill signed 2019||Exempts portion of Oregon on Mountain Time. Requires permanent DST for Washington and California before taking effect.|
|Rhode Island||Bill for year-round AST pending|
|South Carolina||Permanent DST bill signed 2020|
|South Dakota||Bill for permanent DST failed|
|Tennessee||Permanent DST bill signed 2019|
|Texas||Ballot Referendum Introduced||Bill stalled in the Senate. Plans in place to resubmit in 2021 (earliest possible date). |
|Utah||Bill passed House and Senate, awaiting governor's signature or veto.||Governor expected to sign bill. |
|Virginia||Bill for permanent DST failed|
|Washington||Permanent DST bill signed 2019|
|West Virginia||Bill introduced||Bill passed senate |
|Wyoming||Permanent DST bill signed 2020||Requires permanent DST in all or portions of three other western states (Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, or Utah) before taking effect.|
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