State will keep DST

March 1, 2013 • Local News

The state Senate Public Affairs Committee voted Friday to table a bill, sponsored by Sen. Cliff Pirtle, R-Roswell, that would have exempted New Mexico from observing daylight saving time.

Pirtle said the U.S. government allows each state to exempt itself from daylight saving time, and SB559 “does just that.”

“This bill, either you love it or hate it,” he told the committee.

[auth] He said recent studies have shown that people use more energy during daylight saving time, such as air conditioning in the middle of the afternoon.

“This is the only green bill I can support,” he quipped.

Committee member Craig Brandt, R-Rio Rancho, co-sponsored Pirtle’s bill.

“I hate daylight saving time,” Brandt said dryly. “I hate it with a passion.”

He said people are more likely to have accidents during daylight saving time, due to changing sleep cycles. Also, he said, the state is “blessed to have so much sun” and having enough sunlight is not a problem.

“Daylight saving time is no longer necessary,” he said.

Committee member Sen. Gay Kernan, R-Hobbs, voted in favor of tabling. She said if it were to pass and Texas continued to observe, then there would be a two-hour difference between the two states, creating inconvenience.

“I just think it creates too many problems for industries along the east side of the state,” she said. “It just seems very confusing when we opt out of things other parts of the country are doing.”

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