Washington voters may have a chance to vote in the next general election on whether to keep the state on daylight savings time year-round.
First introduced on January 11, Senate Bill 5139 proposing the change to year-round daylight savings time was adopted by the senate with a 46-3 vote March 12. Original sponsors of the bill were Senators Honeyford, Hunt, Van De Sege, Fortunator and Pederson. California and Oregon are also taking steps to eliminate the semiannual time change.
According to the proposed bill, research has shown that changing to and from daylight saving time twice per year has negative impacts on public health, including greater risks of heart attacks, more frequent workplace injuries and increased suicide rates in the days immediately following the switch. Scientific research also finds the switch increases traffic accidents and crime, disrupts agriculture scheduling and hinders economic growth, the bill states.
If voters pass the bill in in the November 2019 General Election, the year-round time change will take effect on the second Sunday in March 2020. Until then, Washington would remain on Pacific Standard Time with the observance of daylight savings time.
President Trump voiced his support for the idea on Monday, tweeting: “Making Daylight Saving Time permanent is O.K. with me!”