Florida year-round daylight saving time still stuck in Congress

By Mike Vasilinda - Tallahassee Bureau Chief
Pixabay

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - It has been 19 months since Florida lawmakers and the governor approved a switch to year-round daylight saving time.

But the change requires congressional approval, which has been slow in coming.

U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio filed the Sunshine Protection Act and said in a video released by his office that he isn't happy about the delay.

"Well, it is my hope that Sunday, Nov. 3 will be the last time we have to do this ridiculous changing of the clocks back and forth," Rubio said.

To many, it seems like a no-brainer.

"I sleep late in the mornings, but I like the late afternoons," said Ruby McAllister, who lives near the time zone boundary in Florida's Panhandle.

But there is powerful opposition coming from the national PTA.

"It is definitely a trick. It is not good for Florida's children," said Melissa Raffensberger with the Florida PTA. "You have elementary students waiting in the dark for their buses. It's a traffic issue with these young students waiting outside. Also, even going up to high school, you have these new drivers, these young drivers driving in the dark."

In Congress, there is also competing legislation that would make standard time permanent all year long. 

That's something Patricia Reid yearns for.

"Because you're more relaxed. People understand stuff and you get more done," Reid said.

So come this weekend, Floridians will fall back at least one more time -- with the fate of whether that's the last time in the hands of a bitterly divided Congress.

President Donald Trump has signaled his support for year-round daylight saving time. 

Six other states besides Florida have asked Congress for the change. 

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