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Will New Mexico end time changes and stick with daylight saving time?

Bill seeks to make state exempt from standard time

FARMINGTON – With the arrival of daylight saving time, some members of the New Mexico Legislature are working to push a bill that would make this the last time New Mexicans need to “spring forward” by one hour, and make sure they never have to “fall back” an hour in the fall.

Senate Bill 102 was introduced in January on Day 1 of the legislative session. The bill calls for state exemption from reverting to standard time once daylight saving time ends.

This year, daylight saving time starts at 2 a.m. Sunday, when people will move their clocks forward one hour, and it ends Nov. 7, when clocks turn back one hour, which is when standard time would go back into effect. Essentially, daylight saving time is from spring to fall, and standard time is from fall to spring.

The bill says that, because the entire state of New Mexico fits into one time zone, unlike Texas, which lies in both central and mountain time zones, the state is allowed to exempt itself from daylight saving time.

If the state were to pass the bill, then New Mexico would be one hour ahead of Arizona throughout the year. During daylight saving time, New Mexico would have the same time as Colorado, but in the fall, when Colorado reverts to standard time, New Mexico would be an hour ahead. Alternatively, with Texas and Oklahoma, when the states are in standard time, they will have the same time as New Mexico, but during daylight saving time, New Mexico will be one hour behind.

While there have been unsuccessful previous attempts to make the state exempt from daylight saving time or keep it indefinitely, SB 102 passed March 5 in the state Senate 22-18.

The sponsor of the bill, Sen. Cliff Pirtle, did not respond to requests for comment.

mmitchell@durangoherald.com

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