Daylight saving time year round passes Senate

Dependent on U.S. Congress approval
By Emma Epperly, WNPA Olympia News Bureau | Apr 19, 2019

Legislation to make daylight saving time the year-round standard passed the Senate Tuesday evening in a bipartisan 46-2 vote.

The bill would put Washington on Pacific Daylight Time year-round, pending approval of Congress.

Senators Liz Lovelette, D-Anacortes, and Tim Sheldon, D- Potlatch, voted in opposition.

House Bill 1196, co-sponsored by Rep. John Lovick, D-Mill Creek, was introduced by Rep. Marcus Riccelli, D-Spokane, and has gained traction over the course of the session, passing the House on March 9 in an 89-7 vote.

The version that passed the Senate clarifies that Washington would simply not change the clocks in November after approval is given by Congress.

Kathy Reeves, director of Communications for Everett Public Schools, said district officials haven’t made any decisions about how schools might respond should the state effort become law.

One of the advantages of “falling back” (turning our clocks back one hour) in November is that kids on their way to school in the morning have an hour’s worth more sunlight than they would if the time doesn’t change.

Nevertheless, Reeves said, “Safety and security of our students is of utmost importance. If the governor signs the bill, the school district will analyze the impact on schools and school transportation, including timing and if there are safety-related concerns.

“If there are any proposed changes from that analysis it would go before the board and be a board decision.

“We’ll wait and see what happens,” she said.

Sen. Sam Hunt, D- Olympia, cited California and Oregon, who are pursuing the move to year-round daylight saving time and said leaders in British Columbia are supportive of considering a similar change there. Hunt hopes to avoid “gyrating time zones” with this move.

Sen. Jim Honeyford, R-Sunnyside, has proposed forms of this legislation over the last three years and supported the bill as a whole.

Sen. Mark Mullet, D-Issaquah, put forward an amendment to send this measure to a vote of the people. The amendment failed mainly due to the costs that are associated with sending a referendum out for a vote.

The Senate version will head back to the House for approval before going to Gov. Jay Inslee to be signed in to law.

Comments (0)
If you wish to comment, please login.