Sunday morning, the clock on your smart phone, as it does once a year, is going to roll straight from 1:59 a.m. to 3:00 a.m., costing you an hour's sleep and causing a small to moderate amount of pain as you struggle through Sunday and the beginning of the week. Spring forward, fall back's jerk cousin is back, ready to make everybody feel like they're just a little bit jet-lagged.
Legislators in both the Texas House and Senate want you to know it doesn't have to be this way.
"All the reasons that we used to have daylight saving [time] are a thing of the past," San Antonio state Sen. Jose Menendez says. "We just need to pick a time that we like — if we like the spring forward, keep it — and that's it. We don't move back and forth."
Menendez filed a bill earlier this year that would keep Texas on one clock permanently, beginning Nov. 4, 2019, the day after clocks are set to return to standard time this year. If more of his colleagues want to stay on daylight saving time than standard time, however, Menendez is perfectly willing to change his bill. More daylight hours are fine, he said. Continuing to bear the effects of an early 20th-century policy meant to save energy during World War I is not.
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"There's health concerns with people. Studies show that because people don't get enough sleep and their sleep patterns are thrown off, there's an increase in heart attacks. Accidents occur. Lots of things," Menendez says. "Productivity goes down in the workplace. Kids don't adjust as well ... It's an antiquated practice that's time, pun intended, has come to an end. It's just not necessary."
Getting rid of the time changes has bipartisan support in both chambers of the Legislature. Menendez's bill is co-authored by Republicans Bob Hall and Bryan Hughes. In the House, Republican Lyle Larson has filed a bill similar to Menendez's.
“Doing something just because it has always been done is no reason to continue it,” Larson said in a press release. “Let’s mark the 100th anniversary of this antiquated policy by finally putting an end to it.”
If Texas opts out of changing its clocks twice a year, it would join Hawaii and Arizona as the only states to do so. The state would also turn its back on one of its own, President Lyndon B. Johnson, who signed the Uniform Time Act in 1966, ensuring that states across the country adjusted their clocks on the same dates.