Capital Clicks

House passes year-round daylight saving time proposal

By: - March 7, 2022 5:06 pm

Sunsets would come later during winter days if Iowa stayed on Daylight Saving Time year-around. (Photo by Kathie Obradovich/Iowa Capital Dispatch)

Iowa lawmakers are pushing once again to put the state on permanent daylight saving time.

Under House File 2331, Iowans would no longer advance their clocks an hour in the spring. Instead, the state would permanently be on daylight saving time, keeping clocks an hour ahead of Central Standard Time all year long.

Rep. Mike Sexton, R-Rockwell City, said the practice of daylight saving time was a holdover from World War I.

“It’s something that occurred at the turn of the century when they were trying to save energy,” Sexton said. “And in fact, we don’t need to do that anymore.”

But even if the bill becomes law, nothing would immediately change in Iowa. 

The federal government allows states to switch to year-round standard time – meaning they do not “spring forward” for the summer months. Arizona and Hawaii are on that system.

The U.S. government needs to grant permission before states can be on year-round daylight saving time. If the Senate and Gov. Kim Reynolds approve the proposal, Iowa would join 19 other states with plans switch over, pending federal approval.

Lawmakers adopted an amendment proposed by Rep. Bruce Hunter, clarifying the bill would take effect only after the federal government clears a path for the switch.

Despite the amendment, Hunter, D-Des Moines, said the change could create issues with neighboring states. He said his parents experienced year-round Standard Time when they spent winters in Bullhead City, Arizona, located near the border of Nevada and California. 

“It was a pain in the butt, not only for them, but for businesses,” Hunter said.

The House voted 82-13 to pass the bill, sending it to the Senate for consideration.

Daylight saving time begins at 2 a.m. Sunday. Remember to set your clocks forward Sunday morning!

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Katie Akin
Katie Akin

Katie Akin is a former Iowa Capital Dispatch reporter. Katie began her career as an intern at PolitiFact, debunking viral fake news and fact-checking state and national politicians. She moved to Iowa in 2019 for a politics internship at the Des Moines Register, where she assisted with Iowa Caucus coverage, multimedia projects and the Register’s Iowa Poll. She became the Register’s retail reporter in early 2020, chronicling the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Central Iowa’s restaurants and retailers.