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Time Expires On Bill To Abolish Daylight Saving Time In Washington

Paul Eggert
Wikimedia Commons
On this map, the blue areas observe DST, the red areas never have and the orange areas have in the past, but currently do not.

The sun rose and then quickly set again on a proposal by some state legislators to abolish daylight saving time in Washington state.

Constituent complaints about disrupted sleep and the hassle of changing clocks prompted legislation in both Oregon and Washington.

Staying on Pacific Standard Time year-round would avoid the twice-yearly ritual. But it raises complications if other states keep springing forward, said Sen. Marko Liias, D-Mukilteo, at a committee hearing on Thursday.

"For folks that do work with the Eastern seaboard particularly, adding an additional hour means they are now instead of three hours off, they're four hours off from work colleagues,” Liias said.

The prime sponsor, Sen. John McCoy, D-Tulalip, responded that people can handle that.

Thereafter, committee members let the bill die without a vote. But the idea lives on in Oregon, where a similar measure to abolish daylight saving awaits a hearing in the state Senate in Salem.

The Oregon version of the legislation includes a referendum to give voters the final say. Getting rid of daylight saving time came up in the Idaho Legislature in 2012, but went nowhere. The idea was broached in the Washington State House earlier in the current session, but that bill also died without a vote.

Federal law allows states to opt out of daylight saving time if they want to. Arizona and Hawaii are currently the only ones to do so.

Spring-forward time is just around the corner, coming on March 8.

Correspondent Tom Banse is an Olympia-based reporter with more than three decades of experience covering Washington and Oregon state government, public policy, business and breaking news stories. Most of his career was spent with public radio's Northwest News Network, but now in semi-retirement his work is appearing on other outlets.