Daylight Saving Time On Its Way Out In Oklahoma

A bill to repeal daylight saving time in Oklahoma has been recommended for passage. As reported by KOCO, the House Committee voted in favor of Bill 2557 by Rep. Harold Wright, R-Weatherford. If the bill passes, the bi-annual changing of the clocks would no longer apply to Oklahoma, said Rep. Todd Russ, R-Cordell.

“Dusk in the summertime would arrive between 8 and 8:30 p.m. instead of 9 and 9:30 p.m.”

Speaking to Fox23, Rep. Mark Lepak, R-Claremore, put the case for keeping daylight saving time.

“We’d see daybreak about 4 a.m… we would be out of step, or out of time, with most of the rest of the country… Oklahoma companies might encounter problems in their dealings with businesses in other states and foreign nations because of time conflicts.”

Rep. Steve Kouplen, D-Beggs, filed a similar bill which was scuttled in favor of HB 2557.

“He said research has shown an increase in heart attacks and traffic accidents in the days immediately after clocks are pushed forward one hour each spring. Advancing the clock forward for daylight savings time results in the loss of an hour of sleep on the morning after the change, and it disrupts the body’s circadian (biological) rhythm.”

Daylight saving time was introduced into the United States in 1918, but abolished after World War I, and reintroduced during World War II. Daylight saving time is adhered to by all 50 states except Arizona (not including the Navajo Nation), Hawaii, parts of Indiana, and most overseas territories. American daylight saving time begins on the second Sunday in March, and ends on the first sunday in November.

While daylight saving time started in the United States as a wartime effort to save on fuel, the idea of a seasonal time change was first proposed in 1895 by George Hudson, from New Zealand, who wanted more sunlit hours in which to catch and study insects.

It looks like the idea of daylight saving time was not popular with everyone.

This 18-year-old letter to the Oklahoman shows that arguments about daylight saving time have been going on for years.

Considering there are around 40 time zones across the world, including the six time zones of the United States, organizations should be used to dealing with time differences by now. However, certain Oklahomans are in favor of the change. Rep. Sally Kern, R-Oklahoma City, approves of the idea, according to KFOR.

“Some people would prefer to have daylight in the evening rather than in the morning… thousands of people play golf after work. I think this would have a huge economic impact on golf courses and other businesses, and would impact a lot of people.”

Sen. Betty Olson, of South Dakota, proposed a similar bill which passed the South Dakota Senate’s Commerce and Energy Committee at the end of January, according to the Independent. Olson said she was “darn sick” of changing her clocks twice a year. However, Keloland Television reported that she wasn’t averse to a few adjustments to the bill.

“The Republican lawmaker says she prefers standard time, but her husband likes daylight saving time, so she went with that as a compromise in the bill.”

Sen. Brock Greenfield agreed that it was time for daylight saving time in South Dakota to end when speaking to Dakota Broadcasting.

“A lot of people don’t understand why we turn our clocks forward then turn our clocks back, the net effect is zero… we are a much more modern civilization and I think we could probably adjust to such a bold change…”

Whether or not the Oklahoma bill passes its final hurdles, it seems that the arguments for and against daylight saving time will probably go on for a while. Some people insist that the time changes are a necessity for summer evenings, while others in insist that the changing times of dawn and dusk endangers schoolchildren. Keaton Fox, however, tweeted that it would definitely be a win-win situation for him.

If the Oklahoma and South Dakota bills pass, it is likely that several states will also attempt to repeal daylight saving time. However, some think that daylight saving time should take a back seat to other issues.

What do you think of daylight saving time? Is it an archaic waste of time or do you like the clock changes from winter to summer? Is it the right time for state legislatures to be discussing daylight saving time?

[Photo by Sue Ogrocki/AP Images]

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