LVN Editorial: Legislature must look at DST

The Democratic leadership in the state Legislature appears to be punting at midfield again, unable or unwilling to look at issues affecting many of their citizens … and that includes people in counties other than Clark and Washoe.

Like proposed tax increases to help fund education, a time-change measure could wind up on the ballots for residents to decide.

A national movement involving a number of state legislatures is calling for a universal Daylight Savings Time rather than the two-tier system of changing clocks twice a year. The latest time change on Sunday required residents to move their clocks forward by one hour, thus reducing an hour over the weekend but then shepherding in an extra hour of evening daylight.

Come November, we fall back an hour but then see our days shortened of daylight in both the morning and evening. Frankly, is there a need to keep changing clocks twice a year?

Clock changing, which began during World War I and has endured some roller-coaster times for the past century, may have exceeded — no pun intended — it’s time.

State Sen. Joe Hardy, a Republican from Boulder City, would like to see the Legislature pass a bill to end the twice-yearly changing of the clocks. If or when the state legislatures make a change, however, then Congress — and only Congress — must revise the Uniform Time Act.

Already, a handful of western states have passed bills to adopt a permanent daylight saving time. Hardy would like to tie any DST change to California, which is logical since most of Nevada’s tourists come from the state, and much of Nevada’s commerce is also tied to our neighbors to the west.

According to many news reports, research suggests having one DST will result in fewer medical emergencies, traffic accidents and household electricity consumption.

The Legislature needs to look at all angles of DST by involving the ranchers and farmers, the tourism industry and community leaders.

Would a permanent DST benefit those individuals who work the land. Would any change affect the diary operations in the state? The Legislature, for example, could enlist the local help of the Nevada Cattlemen’s Association and the Truckee-Carson Irrigation District to poll their constituents.

Would an extra hour or two of daylight in the evening benefit the dining and entertainment industry?

Would an extra hour benefit youngsters or adults in athletic events or help nonprofit organizations with their endeavors?

Hardy’s proposal seems reasonable. If each one of the concerns can be qualified, then the Legislature must take the ball and move forward to the goal line for a permanent DST.

Now isn’t the time for both houses of the Legislature to punt.
This editorial is the opinion of the Lahontan Valley News, a member of the Nevada News Group.

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