WASHINGTON, D.C. — Senator Ron Wyden has reintroduced a bill that would make Daylight Saving Time permanent across the country, the lawmaker's office announced on Tuesday.
“The Sunshine Protection Act takes a common-sense step to provide some much-needed stability for families in Oregon and across the nation,” Wyden said. “Springing forward and falling back year after year only creates unnecessary confusion while harming Americans’ health and our economy. Making Daylight Saving permanent would give folks an hour back of sunshine during the winter months when we need it most.”
The Oregon legislature passed a bill in 2019 designed to permanently adopt DST, but implementation hinged on several further steps. Both Washington and California needed to sign off — and while the former did so, California's popular measure to make the change stalled in the legislature.
Even if California did get on board, Congress would need to approve the West Coast transition.
Senator Wyden's bill attempts to circumvent the morass of individual state efforts. If enacted, the bipartisan bill would apply to states that currently observe DST, which Oregon and most other U.S. states follow eight months out of every year. By comparison, Standard Time only lasts for the four months from November to March.
"The bill would simply negate the need for Americans to change their clocks twice a year, and could have benefits for nation’s health and economy," Wyden's office said.
The lawmaker cited a number of seemingly peculiar benefits to permanent DST — from reducing car crashes and the risk of cardiac issues, stroke, and seasonal depression; to a reduction in robberies caused by additional daylight time in the evenings. Other studies showed potential economic benefit, decreased childhood obesity, boosts to agriculture, and reduced energy usage.
Alongside Wyden, the Sunshine Protection Act was introduced by Senator Marco Rubio of Florida and co-sponsored by Senators James Lankford, R-Okla., Roy Blunt, R-Mo., Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., Cindy Hyde-Smith, R-Miss., Rick Scott, R-Fla., and Ed Markey, D-Mass.