Will Florida start observing Daylight Saving Time year-round?

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Posted at 2:35 PM, Oct 29, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-29 10:36:13-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) - Floridians will still need to set their clocks back one hour on November 4, despite Gov. Rick Scott signing a bill that would allow the entire state to remain in Daylight Saving Time year-round.

Whether or not Floridians do that depends on Congress, whose approval is needed to change federal law. Congress is not expected to vote any time soon on a proposed change that would let Florida stay on Daylight Saving Time year-round.

As a result, Floridians will need to turn back their clocks on November 4.

Most states begin Daylight Saving Time on the second Sunday in March, the 11th, and it runs until the first Sunday in November, which in 2018, is the 4th.

The Florida Legislature passed the "Sunshine Protection Act" to keep DST permanently.

Gov. Rick Scott signed the bill over opponents of the bill, who include the Florida Parent Teacher Association. That group opposes permanent DST because it would stay dark while children commute to school.

U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., has also filed a bill to make DST permanent for Florida and the nation

Rubio cited benefits of making DST permanent, including these four:

Benefits the economy, including the elimination of a substantial economic decline that comes every November when clocks move back.

Benefits the agricultural economy, which is disproportionately disrupted by biannual changes in time by upsetting farm schedules and farmers’ relationships with their supply chain and distribution partners.

Reduces the number of robberies by 27 percent, according to a 2015 Brookings Institution report, because of additional daylight in the evenings.

Reduces car crashes and car wrecks involving pedestrians because the additional sunlight increased visibility, according to the American Journal of Public Health and the Journal of Safety Research.