With daylight saving time ending this Sunday, state Sen. Joseph Griffo, R-I-C-Rome, and Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara, D-Rotterdam, continue to push for permanent daylight saving time in New York.
As a result of the enactment of the federal Uniform Time Act in 1966, most Americans advance their clocks by an hour in the warmer months so that it gets dark later and move their clocks back an hour in the fall. All states except for Hawaii and Arizona, as well as several U.S. territories, follow daylight saving time.
However, nearly two-thirds of Americans want the changing of the clocks to stop. Research and studies have indicated that moving clocks forward one hour in the spring and back in the fall can have significant consequences on the health, safety and wellbeing of the public. Observing daylight saving time year-round can reduce energy consumption, lead to reductions in crime and traffic accidents and increased economic activity, which helps businesses and the economy.
Sen. Griffo and Assemblyman Santabarbara recently sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins and Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie requesting that the Legislature take up their legislation (S3813/A6443) establishing daylight saving time as the year-round standard time of the state and New York City.
Sen. Griffo’s bill is in the Senate’s Judiciary Committee, while Assemblyman Santabarbara’s bill has been referred to the Assembly’s Governmental Operations Committee.
Sen. Griffo and Assemblyman Santabarbara’s legislation also would be contingent upon states that border New York passing legislation similar to their bill. The senator has engaged with legislators from neighboring states to solicit their interest in introducing similar bills in their respective legislatures, as well as officials in several Canadian provinces who have expressed a willingness to consider making daylight saving time permanent.
Sen. Griffo said, “I believe that making daylight saving time permanent will benefit our communities, state and geographic region. Studies and research indicate that are many benefits to permanent daylight saving time, including improving health, enhancing public safety, reducing accidents and providing a needed boost for our economy. It’s time for the Legislature to act on this bill.”
Assemblyman Santabarbara said, “Americans have changed their clocks twice a year for more than a century, a practice that has proven to have negative impacts in our community. Studies have shown that moving clocks forward in the spring and back in the fall has a negative effect on sleep, productivity, concentration, and general well-being. Recent estimates show millions of dollars are lost each year due to decreases in workplace productivity during the transition. While daylight saving time has been reported to save energy, studies have shown very little is actually saved during this period of time. It’s time to replace this antiquated system with one better suited for our modern times.”