Illinois lawmakers evaluating permanent Standard Time, Daylight Saving Time, or no change

Illinois lawmakers evaluating permanent Standard Time, Daylight Saving Time, or no change

ILLINOIS (IRN) — Competing resolutions at the Illinois statehouse could have residents ditching the twice-a-year hunt to change all the clocks.

The debate is over which time is best or whether to keep it status quo.

During a committee hearing on the issue last week, state Rep. Tim Butler, R-Springfield, presented a measure alongside state Rep. Jonathan Carrol, D-Northbrook, to make Standard Time year-round.

“Which would eliminate the time changes, and keep us on winter time,” Butler said. “I’m somebody, as I get older, I actually get up earlier. I enjoy light in the morning.”

State Rep. Bob Morgan, D-Deerfield, said his measure to have Daylight Saving Time all year is the way to go.

“Given what we just went through with COVID, we really need to be very specific and very deliberate with our pandemic response and one of the ways to do that is to help our small businesses, giving them some extra time at the end of the day when it’s still sunny out,” Morgan said.

But, they have to work on convincing the likes of state Rep. Mike Murphy, R-Springfield, who said picking either would put the state out of sync with national broadcast schedules and other activities.

Jay Pea, a researcher with the group Save Standard Time, wants to stick with just Standard Time. Pea opposed making Daylight Saving Time year-round, saying there are negative impacts.

“It reduces sleep, reduces immunity, reduces alertness, school grades, productivity,” Pea said. “It increases illness and accidents.”

Time change researcher David Prerau likes the status quo.

“I personally disagree with both of those proposals and I think that the current system is a very good compromise, an excellent compromise,” Prerau said.

While he said Daylight Saving Time is great in the spring, summer and fall to cut down on energy, traffic accidents and health problems, he said having that time in the winter makes for very late sunrises.

The resolutions remain in committee.