Daylight Saving Bill Fades

House divisions on permanent switch remain, but members mostly cite more urgent priorities
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 25, 2022 7:03 PM CDT
Daylight Saving Change Stalls
The sun rises on a farm north of Bowling Green, Ky., last November. Many farmers don't want to lose an hour of morning daylight, which would happen under the Sunshine Protection Act.   (Grace Ramey/Daily News via AP, File)

After winning Senate approval in March, legislation to make daylight saving time permanent has just been sitting in the House. Its supporters—or at least those open to the idea—said the main reason is there's a lot going on, the Hill reports. "We have so many other priorities," said Democratic Rep. Frank Pallone Jr., who chairs Energy and Commerce Committee. He said the idea is alive but not near the top of the House agenda at the moment. "If we can accomplish anything, it wouldn’t be until the fall," Pallone said.

There's disagreement among members about the bill, but Pallone said it doesn't follow party lines. "It's not at all partisan," he said. “It’s totally, you know, regional and depends on your district." The bill would cost an hour of daylight in the morning from November through February. Farming communities want morning daylight, while tourism areas prefer evening light so people will stay out longer, he said. Lawmakers are trying to reach a consensus, Pallone said, "but so far, it's eluded us."

House leaders of both parties have said they're not big supporters of the Sunshine Protection Act, including Reps. Kevin McCarthy and Steny Hoyer. Democratic Rep. Jan Schakowsky said that in her district, a "disproportionate amount" of people were talking about the bill, mostly approvingly, when it first passed the Senate. "It just does not seem as the kind of urgent priority right now. That’s all," she told the Hill. A Democratic aide in the House said the bill's moment might have passed. "There was like this big momentum to push it, and that kind of fell apart," the aide said. "And I think that's really kind of hard to regain that momentum." (Read more Daylight Saving Time stories.)

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