(KCPW News) Utah residents will still be changing their clocks twice a year. Friday, the House Judiciary Committee killed a bill that would have eliminated daylight savings time in the state. Republican Representative Jim Nielson says he brought the proposal forward to protect Utah’s most vulnerable residents.
“The most significant is the impact it has on children when they prepare for school. If they get their first class and they haven’t seen the sun yet, they’re not going to perform as well,” he tells KCPW. “There is absolute research out there that says that kids in a daylight classroom perform better. But then you add to that the fact that before they get to school, they’re walking to the bus, they’re walking to school where someone might not see them.”
Nielson also claims research shows that hospitals across the country show a slight increase in patients suffering from heart attacks and strokes in the weeks immediately following the time changes.
But Republican Representative Paul Ray opposed the bill, saying that after growing up in Indiana, a state that did not recognize daylight savings time until recently, he knows firsthand the challenges that can follow.
“Half of the year you were on the time that pretty much everyone else was; the other half of the year your news programs came on an hour later, your primetime TV came on an hour later, because the rest of the country is switching times; you’re not,” says Ray. “And commerce-wise it’s hard to do business, because people you’re doing business with and people doing business with, you have to calculate ‘well what month is it.’ So, it gets very confusing.”
The bill failed on a five-to-seven vote. There are only two states that don’t practice daylight savings time: Arizona and Hawaii.
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