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Senator says it's time to end back-and-forth time changes
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Senator says it's time to end back-and-forth time changes

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Sen. Tom Briese of Albion called Monday for Nebraska to end the "outdated practice" of setting clocks back and forward an hour twice a year and instead move Nebraska to year-round daylight saving time.

Under legislation he introduced in 2021, the permanent adoption of daylight saving time would occur once federal regulations allow states to make such a move and once three neighboring states adopt similar legislation.

His bill (LB283) has 22 co-sponsors and has been advanced to the floor of the Legislature for consideration in the 2022 legislative session, which convenes in January.

Tom Briese mug (copy)

Tom Briese

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"In the 2 1/2 years since I first introduced legislation to do away with the biannual time changes, I have yet to encounter anyone who could make a good argument for keeping this archaic practice," Briese said.

"This past weekend, we turned our clocks back an hour," he said. "And in March, we will wind them forward an hour again. This practice dates back to World War I, when it was a necessary practice to conserve lamp oil in a time of wartime needs for fuel and supplies.

"And, yet, for reasons that no one can cogently explain, we carry out this outdated practice today (in) an era of energy-efficient LED light bulbs and energy-saving appliances."

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Briese said data demonstrates a host of negative impacts from the time changes, including "a marked decrease in economic activity at our local small businesses, one that our beleaguered neighborhood stores, shops and restaurants can hardly afford to bear after 18 months of pandemic recession" when clocks change back to standard time.

When clocks move forward an hour next March, experience indicates there will be a reduction in employee workforce effectiveness and an increase in highway accidents, he said.

Briese first introduced similar legislation in 2020 when it did not advance from committee to the floor of the Legislature for consideration.

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Reach the writer at 402-473-7248 or dwalton@journalstar.com.

On Twitter @LJSdon

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