Classifieds | Place a class ad | PDF Edition | Home Delivery
From coast to coast, we're tired of it.
This weekend is the switch from daylight saving time to standard time.
Earlier this week Florida's state Senate joined its House and in a matter of seconds voted against switching; the bill advances to the governor's desk where it'll be signed or not.
The state legislation is called the Sunshine Protection Act, which is appropriate coming out of Florida — the Sunshine State.
In Alaska, it might be called the Midnight Sun Protection Act.
Here in Ketchikan we've lamented how switching back and forth between time twice a year is disconcerting, distracting, unsettling and perturbing. It's particularly perturbing in the spring because we lose an hour, which makes the weekend shorter. The time has come to end this practice.
Florida, however, has taken the opposite approach to that end than other states that have done it. Instead of eliminating daylight saving time, its legislature has decided to adopt it.
The idea was overwhelmingly approved in both state chambers — 33-2 in the Senate and 103-11 in the House. Florida Gov. Rick Scott isn't saying yet whether he will go along with the Legislature.
Then, that's not the end of it. The federal government has the final say when it comes to time zones. It allows states not to participate in daylight saving time, but it doesn't permit adopting daylight saving time. For this to occur in Florida — or anywhere else in the states — Congress would have to exempt Florida from the Uniform Time Act of 1966.
Frankly, we encourage Congress to go either way. But make it one way or the other and eliminate the switch.
Daylight saving time already is observed about eight months out of the year. It begins the second Sunday in March and ends the first Sunday in November.
The idea of daylight saving time dates back to Benjamin Franklin, but the federal government didn't begin addressing it until the 20th century. It was adopted in '66 and expanded in 1974 as an effort to save power during the energy crisis.
Daylight saving time has been studied for its effects on energy consumption — very little — and people's circadian rhythms. The switch itself has been blamed for increased health problems, as well as accidents and mishaps that can be rest related.
In Ketchikan, we could do without the switch. Our primary economic and social concern is watching a clock set to the same time as Seattle, with which much business and entertainment is conducted.
Daylight saving time or standard time, let's choose one and never switch again.
That said, until we do, don't forget to move the hands on your clock forward an hour on Sunday morning.