Tired of the jolt to your system when you “spring forward” and “fall back” because of time changes? California voters will have the chance to make daylight saving time year-round when they go to the polls in November.
Gov. Jerry Brown signed Assembly Bill 807 in June to put the initiative on the ballot that would eliminate switching our clocks twice a year.
The legislation, by Assemblyman Kansen Chu of San Jose, would repeal the state’s Daylight Saving Time Act. Because voters approved the act in 1949, only voters can repeal it.
“Voters spoke back in 1949 on this issue, and it is now time they take another look,” Kansen said in a news release from his District 25 office. “Times have changed, and research is telling us that the practice of changing our clocks negatively affects our health and safety.”
Converting to daylight saving time all year would require a two-thirds majority vote in the state Legislature and approval by Congress, plus the president’s signature. However, California could stay on standard time all year without federal approval, just as Arizona and Hawaii have.
Year-round daylight saving would mean more light in the evenings with later sunsets, but the flip side would be extended dark mornings, until nearly 8 a.m. in late December (kids walking to school in the dark?!). Standard time benefits Arizonans, for example, who prefer earlier sunsets during the summer when temperatures are scorching.
Experts say energy savings, if any, would be negligible because although people would turn on their lights later, they would use their air conditioning more.
Year-round daylight saving would also play a bit of havoc with time zone changes: (1) We would be out of sync with other West Coast states, and (2) during summer months, California would be the normal three hours behind the East Coast but only two hours during winter months. Two adjustments a year would need to be made.
Your chance to weigh-in on Proposition 7 comes Nov. 6.