Florida Clocks Still Falling Back Despite Passage of State Law
FLORIDA – According to an online news report from naplesnews.com, Floridians still had to set their clocks back on November 4, despite that passage of a new state law to the contrary.
In early 2018, a measure to essentially do away with daylight saving time overwhelmingly passed in the Florida Legislature. Florida Gov. Rick Scott also signed the bill into law. Nevertheless, Florida clocks still had to fall back on November 4. So what gives?
Under federal law, states can opt out of daylight saving time altogether. This is why Arizona and Hawaii do not observe daylight saving time. However, states cannot stay on daylight saving time permanently. Florida’s law would have allowed the clocks to spring forward one last time and stay that way. Federal law won’t allow that, so the only way for Florida’s law to go into effect as it currently stands is for Congress to pass legislation.
The federal law would have to be reviewed by the Senate’s 27-member Commerce Committee, then amended in the House and the Senate and signed by the president. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Florida) has been pushing for this action at the federal level, citing studies that say the end of daylight saving time — the “falling back” part — is damaging to the economy. A statement released from Rubio’s office says falling back is associated with a drop in consumer spending of up to 4.9 percent.
In a statement by made by Senator Rubio's office, "the benefits of making daylight saving time permanent, including how it would benefit the economy, agriculture, reduce the number of robberies and reduce car crashes and pedestrian accidents."
As of now, no hearing date is set for amending the federal daylight saving time law, and many lawmakers do not see the measure passing any time soon.
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