OLYMPIA – The state House has voted in favor of a bill that would put Washington state on year-round daylight saving time.
House Bill 1196 passed 89 to 7 and now goes to the Senate.
“It’s time to ditch the switch, bring the light and defeat the dark night,“ said sponsor Rep. Marcus Riccelli, D-Spokane. “Washington is already on daylight saving time eight months out of the year. There’s strong interest in making it permanent.”
Riccelli, who sits on the House Health Care and Wellness Committee, said he originally came to the bill from a health care perspective.
A health impact review from the state Department of Health discusses the effects of changing clocks twice a year on the body’s natural rhythms. The switch is associated with a spike in heart attacks, strokes and even traffic collisions each year.
Riccelli also said extended daylight in the evening is better for youngsters who play sports or want to be active outside.
If HB 1196 makes it all the way through the Legislature, the state won’t automatically switch to year-round daylight saving time. That would be up to the federal government, which has to give permission.
U.S. Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., has expressed interest in seeing the bill pass the Legislature and having a federal conversation around the issue.