Could Daylight Saving Time become permanent? The answer is complicated

SPOKANE, Wash. — Your Monday morning this week might have been a little rougher than usual. We lost an hour of sleep over the weekend due to Daylight Saving Time, but the silver lining here is that extra hour of sunlight you’ll get heading into the evening.

A hot topic of conversation has been whether to keep it that way year-round, but that requires congressional action.

In 2019, Marcus Riccelli sponsored a bill to move Washington to Daylight Saving Time permanently and it had the overwhelming majority voted to make this a reality, on both sides of the aisle. This wouldn’t eliminate Daylight Saving Time — we just simply wouldn’t roll back the clock in November. We’d hold on to more sunlight in our evenings, rather than our mornings. Something else to remember is that Daylight Saving Time is already in effect eight months out of the year.

While this bill did pass in Washington, Congress needs to give the green light either for states to move individually or for the entire nation to move, as one. Research has show time and time again just how valuable this could be for our communities.

“We can see a decrease in cardiac arrest, stroke, traffic collisions, the potential for reduction of crime, commerce can flourish in the sun,” said Riccelli, “and I’m a champion for reducing obesity and diabetes issues amongst our youth, and this allows them to recreate later.”

Riccelli feels that if we get that go-ahead, we should move as a region, with our neighbors Oregon, California, and Idaho. The confusion, especially for regions like our own that border state lines, simply wouldn’t be worth moving to a schedule of permanent Daylight Saving Time, if these surrounding regions were on a different time frame.

Currently, there is a bi-partisan bill that was reintroduced last week by Senator Marco Rubio. It’s called the Sunshine Protection Act and it was originally presented in 2019 — but Rubio reintroduced it in the first week of March. It now needs a hearing to move forward. If it goes through, our entire county would move into Daylight Saving Time permanently.