DES MOINES, Iowa – The Iowa House of Representatives passed a bill on Monday that would establish Daylight Savings Time as the official time in Iowa throughout the year.- pending Congressional approval.
Currently, federal law allows states to eliminate Daylight Savings Time but prohibits states from staying on Daylight Savings Time all year.
Iowa will be the 20th state to pass such legislation if the bill becomes law.
“You can research the side effects of what daylight savings time what moving the clock does,” State Rep. Mike Sexton, R-Rockwell City, the bill’s manager, said during the debate.
He cited an article from the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine that said, “An abundance of accumulated evidence indicates that the acute transition from standard time to daylight savings time occurs significant public health and safety risks, including increased risk of adverse cardiovascular events, mood disorder, motor vehicle crashes…”
State Rep. Bruce Hunter, D-Des Moines, offered an amendment that added language the bill wouldn’t take effect until Congress passed a law approving such a change. He said the current legislation, without that language, would violate federal law.
His amendment passed 94 to 1.
“I agree with everything that Representative Sexton said as far as the positive effects of possibly going on daylight savings time. That being said, unless we have our amendment on that bill, this bill is illegal,” he added.
Hunter added after the amendment passed that his only concern is if border states do not transition along with Iowa.
“We could still run into a lot of trouble with business and going back and forth and trying to figure out what time it is,” he said.
In his closing comments, Sexton pointed to a poll taken last fall that showed an equal number of Democrats and Republicans support such a bill.
“Ladies and gentleman, it’s a nonpartisan issue,” he said. “Let’s get this off the floor and over to the Senate and see what they do with this bill.”