Daylight Saving Time bill advances to Florida Senate

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A bill passed by the state House that would put Florida on daylight saving time year-round went before the Senate committee Monday.

Earlier this month, the House voted 103-11 to approve HB 1013 to ask Congress to let Florida remain in Daylight Saving Time all year, meaning while the rest of the Eastern United States sets their clocks back in the fall, Florida wouldn’t.

The Sunshine State relies on sunshine for tourism and business. CC Young of Sunset Beach Tropical Grill on Fort Myers Beach is all for a bill in the Senate that would make Florida brighter later in the day.

“Nobody wants to walk in the gulf when it’s dark, you don’t know what’s out there,” Young said.

If approved by the Senate, it would mean springing forward one last time in March, no longer turning our clocks back in November.

“It would benefit big time ’cause people would stay at the beach longer,” Young said.

On the other hand, darker mornings could impact some businesses in Florida.

“That extra hour in the summertime doesn’t do any good for the golf biz,” said Rich Lamb, Golf Director for the City of Fort Myers. “You lose the light in the morning and I have a lot of seniors that like to get our early in the morning and get out here before it’s hot.”

Congress would need to amend existing federal law to allow the change.

The Senate version of the bill also calls for moving the entire state into the Eastern time zone. Currently, northwest Florida is in the Central time zone.

*Information from the Associated Press was used in the report. 

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