SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – A bill to keep New Mexico on Daylight Saving Time has passed the Senate floor, meaning the state is one step closer to never changing the clocks again.
The idea comes from Sen. Cliff Pirtle of Roswell, who says he thinks changing the time twice a year is disruptive.
“Changing the clocks twice a year as we have heard, causes a lot of adverse health effects, heart attacks, car crashes. It’s really hard on people with behavioral health issues,” Sen. Pirtle said.
His bill would put New Mexico on “Mountain Daylight Saving Time” year-round. This would do away with moving clocks forward an hour in March, then moving them back an hour in November.
Instead, the state would stay on that hour-forward Daylight Saving Time, which is done to savor the sunlight during the summer months.
Sen. Pirtle’s bill made it through two committees to get to the Senate floor for a full vote Thursday afternoon, where it met some concerns.
“During the second half of November, and all of both December and January, school children will be traveling to school before sunrise,” Sen. Ortiz y Pino said.
In the end, it passed the Senate 26 to 15. Spring forward is on March 12. So, if this becomes law, March 12 will be the last time New Mexicans change their clocks.
The bill now heads to the House, where the same bill, backed by Sen. Pirtle, was killed in 2015 after passing the Senate.
Sen. Pirtle vows to keep trying to get this changed as long as he’s a senator.
Arizona does the opposite, and does not observe Daylight Saving Time. Meaning if this bill passes, New Mexico would always be an hour ahead of Arizona, not just for part of the year.