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Time Expires On Bill To Abolish Daylight Saving Time In Washington

Alexander T Carroll

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 State Senator Marko Liias 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,” he said.

The prime sponsor, Democrat John McCoy, 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.

Now semi-retired, Tom Banse covered national news, business, science, public policy, Olympic sports and human interest stories from across the Northwest. He reported from well known and out–of–the–way places in the region where important, amusing, touching, or outrageous events unfolded. Tom's stories can be found online and were heard on-air during "Morning Edition" and "All Things Considered" on NPR stations in Washington, Oregon, and Idaho.