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Daylight Saving Time

During the early morning on November 7, 2021 (2 am to be exact), it will go through our semi-annual ritual of adjusting our clocks. As I'm sure most will recall the shortcuts, since we are in the fall season, we "fall back". At that magical hour, we set our clocks back an hour and get a well-needed extra hour of sleep. As a side note, despite how it may be cited in conversation it is not Daylight "Savings" Time.

A 1966 federal law signed by President Lyndon B. Johnson specifies that daylight time applies from 2 a.m. on the second Sunday of March until 2 a.m. on the first Sunday of November in areas that do not specifically exempt themselves to stay on standard time.

The main purpose of Daylight Saving Time is to make better use of daylight. The idea behind the clock shift is to maximize sunlight in the Northern Hemisphere, as days start to lengthen in the spring and then wane in the fall. The logic is that by springing forward and falling back, people add an hour of sunlight to the end of the workday. But the benefits of this change are controversial, and the shift can have measurable impacts on health.

In the past four years, 19 states have passed legislation or resolutions seeking to make Daylight Saving Time the standard time in their states, if Congress takes action, according to the National Conference of State Legislators.

Those states include:

  • Alabama, Georgia, Minnesota, Mississippi and Montana in 2021.

  • Georgia, Idaho, Louisiana, Ohio, South Carolina, Utah and Wyoming in 2020.

  • Arkansas, Delaware, Maine, Oregon, Tennessee and Washington in 2019.

  • Florida passed legislation in 2018.

Arguments in favor of daylight saving time generally center on the boost the time shift gives to evening activities. In many places, the time shift is very unpopular. Europe's pending move away from the annual change stemmed from a survey that revealed roughly 80 percent of some 4.6 million respondents were against daylight saving time.

Only time will tell what happens as we move forward. In the meantime, enjoy your extra hour of sleep.

P.S. It is also a good reminder during this time to change the batteries in your smoke detector!

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