TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WFLA) – It has been 19 months since Florida lawmakers and the governor approved a switch to year-round day light saving time, but required congressional approval has been slow in coming.
US Senator Marco Rubio filed the Sunshine Protection Act. In a video released by his office, he said he isn’t happy about the delay.
“Well, it is my hope that Sunday, November 3rd 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 barrier 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.
Raffensberger spoke to 8 On Your Side’s Mike Vasilinda between Halloween parties.
“So you have elementary students waiting in the dark for their buses. It’s a traffic issues with these young students waiting outside,” said Raffensberger. “Also, even going up to high school, you have these new drivers, these young drivers driving in the dark.”
The Appalachicola River is the dividing line between the eastern and central time zones.
In addition to making daylight saving permanent, the legislation passed by lawmakers would put all of Florida in the eastern time zone.
In nearby Chattahoochee, many like Gene D’Alemberte deal with two time zones every day.
“It would sure simplify things around here,” said D’Alemberte.
In congress, there is also competing legislation that would make standard time permanent all year long. Something Patricia Ried 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 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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