New Mexico not changing time change this year

Still feeling fatigued and cranky after this past weekend’s change to daylight saving time? Get used to it. A bill that would have led to the possibility of New Mexico staying on a single time year-round is dead. Members of the House Commerce and Economic Development Committee voted 7-3 to table Senate Bill 102, which […]

New Mexico not changing time change this year

Still feeling fatigued and cranky after this past weekend’s change to daylight saving time?

Get used to it. A bill that would have led to the possibility of New Mexico staying on a single time year-round is dead.

Members of the House Commerce and Economic Development Committee voted 7-3 to table Senate Bill 102, which would make Mountain Daylight Time the state’s permanent year-round time if enabling federal legislation is passed.

Though the bill’s main sponsor, Sen. Cliff Pirtle, R-Roswell, stressed the act would only go into effect if the federal government decides to create a nationwide daylight saving time zone, some committee members were not swayed. They cited concerns about the bill’s potential impact on border trade with Texas and Mexico.

“This is an issue that affects Southern New Mexico,” said Rep. Doreen Gallegos, D-Las Cruces. “We’ve worked really hard to build up that border area.”

She said any time change alterations could have a “negative impact on trade and put us on unequal footing with the economy and with Texas.” She said it also could cause havoc for New Mexicans who commute to Texas to work.

Pirtle argued there’s no reason to change the time twice a year, which he said causes inconvenience to many residents.

“There’s no real reason to change our clocks, and that’s the issue here,” he told committee members, though he also cited a 2014 national study that found the rate of heart attacks increased by 24 percent on the Monday following the weekend clocks move ahead an hour to gain an extra hour of light.

As it is, Pirtle said, Congress is contemplating the Sunshine Protection Act of 2021, in which daylight saving time would be made permanent and the majority of the U.S. would not have to “fall back” every year come November. Currently Hawaii and much of Arizona do not observe the time changes that occur twice a year in the rest of the U.S. 

Few issues stir up constituents as the time-change proposal. Gallegos said every time the issue comes up in legislative sessions — Pirtle has pitched similar bills in the past, without success  — “my area goes berserk. I get hundreds of emails.”

Democratic Rep. Javier Martinez agreed and noted that in his Albuquerque district, “this and trapping [on public lands] are very hot-button issues.”

An Associated Press-NORC poll from 2019 said 31 percent of Americans wanted to move to daylight saving time throughout the year, while 40 percent wanted standard time. Twenty-eight percent in that poll said they were happy moving back and forth between daylight and standard time. 

Just because lawmakers table a bill does not mean it cannot be resurrected and get another shot at moving on. But with just four and a half days left in the session — which ends at noon Saturday — Pirtle’s bill has virtually no chance. 

Had it cleared the house committee Monday, it would have gone to the House of Representatives floor for a final vote. The Senate voted 22-18 to support the bill earlier this month. 

Still, Rep. Moe Maestas, D-Albuquerque and chairman of the committee, told Pirtle his interim committee — which meets between legislative sessions — would call for an economic analysis of the issue to see if it warrants more serious consideration. 

We're ad free

That means that we rely on support from readers like you. Help us keep reporting on the most important New Mexico Stories by donating today.

Related

Effort to challenge six laws enacted last year comes to an end

Effort to challenge six laws enacted last year comes to an end

Earlier this month, the New Mexico Supreme Court denied and dismissed the effort to challenge six laws enacted in 2023. The New Mexico Supreme…
Governor to call special session for public safety legislation this summer

Governor to call special session for public safety legislation this summer

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham announced that she will call the Legislature into a special session this summer to address public safety legislation that did…
Emily’s List endorses seven candidates for Legislature

Emily’s List endorses seven candidates for Legislature

Emily’s List, a nonprofit that supports women candidates and reproductive rights, endorsed seven incumbents facing general election opponents in New Mexico legislative elections. All…
Two PFAS chemicals designated hazardous substances under Superfund law

Two PFAS chemicals designated hazardous substances under Superfund law

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released a final rule Friday to designate two types of PFAS chemicals as hazardous substances. Those two chemicals are perfluorooctanoic…
BLM finalizes controversial public lands rule

BLM finalizes controversial public lands rule

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management finalized its controversial public lands rule on Thursday. This rule is controversial because it allows for conservation leasing…
Haaland signs order protecting sacred lands near Placitas

Haaland signs order protecting sacred lands near Placitas

Interior Secretary Deb Haaland signed an order on Thursday to withdraw more than 4,200 acres of land in Sandoval County near Placitas from mineral…
Amid new graduation requirements, what do high schoolers want to learn?

Amid new graduation requirements, what do high schoolers want to learn?

By Margaret O’Hara, The Santa Fe New Mexican The main things that bring Brayan Chavez to school every day: Seeing, talking to and engaging with…
Special ed teachers hope lawmakers OK pay raises, admin changes

Special ed teachers hope lawmakers OK pay raises, admin changes

By Margaret O’Hara, The Santa Fe New Mexican Brittany Behenna Griffith has a laundry list of adjectives to describe the ideal special education teacher:…
Lawmakers must find consensus on competing education spending plans

Lawmakers must find consensus on competing education spending plans

By Margaret O’Hara, The Santa Fe New Mexican A challenging task awaits New Mexico lawmakers in the next 30 days: Reconciling three very different…
Health workers fear it’s profits before protection as CDC revisits airborne transmission

Health workers fear it’s profits before protection as CDC revisits airborne transmission

Amy Maxmen, KFF Health News Four years after hospitals in New York City overflowed with covid-19 patients, emergency physician Sonya Stokes remains shaken by…
Lujan Grisham, Biden admin announce $10 million in federal funds for tribes, pueblos

Lujan Grisham, Biden admin announce $10 million in federal funds for tribes, pueblos

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham announced Friday $10 million in funding from the federal American Rescue Plan Act was awarded to six tribal nations and…
Proposal to curb executive powers moves to House Judiciary

Proposal to curb executive powers moves to House Judiciary

The House Government, Elections and Indian Affairs Committee discussed a potential constitutional amendment that seeks to limit the governor’s executive powers. The committee approved…
Abortion fund provider rebrands and holds open house

Abortion fund provider rebrands and holds open house

An abortion fund provider unveiled a rebrand and offered an open house in Las Cruces to celebrate the organization’s new name, mission and values. …
Stansbury introduces judicial ethics bill on U.S. Supreme Court steps

Stansbury introduces judicial ethics bill on U.S. Supreme Court steps

U.S. Rep. Melanie Stansbury announced a bill on Thursday that would, if enacted, establish judicial ethics to the U.S. Supreme Court. The Judicial Ethics…
Politics and abortion, how much will it matter?

Politics and abortion, how much will it matter?

At the national level, abortion is still a high-stakes issue with both major presidential candidates talking about it in their campaigns, but it may…
Abortion fund provider rebrands and holds open house

Abortion fund provider rebrands and holds open house

An abortion fund provider unveiled a rebrand and offered an open house in Las Cruces to celebrate the organization’s new name, mission and values. …
Politics and abortion, how much will it matter?

Politics and abortion, how much will it matter?

At the national level, abortion is still a high-stakes issue with both major presidential candidates talking about it in their campaigns, but it may…
How the AZ Supreme Court decision on abortion impacts New Mexico

How the AZ Supreme Court decision on abortion impacts New Mexico

The Arizona Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday that an 1864 abortion ban is enforceable, throwing another state bordering New Mexico into the situation of…
Effort to challenge six laws enacted last year comes to an end

Effort to challenge six laws enacted last year comes to an end

Earlier this month, the New Mexico Supreme Court denied and dismissed the effort to challenge six laws enacted in 2023. The New Mexico Supreme…
Vasquez calls out Republicans for ‘inaction’ on border policy

Vasquez calls out Republicans for ‘inaction’ on border policy

U.S. Rep. Gabriel “Gabe” Vasquez, a Democrat who represents the state’s 2nd Congressional District along the U.S.-Mexico border, cosponsored a resolution on Monday calling…
Politics and abortion, how much will it matter?

Politics and abortion, how much will it matter?

At the national level, abortion is still a high-stakes issue with both major presidential candidates talking about it in their campaigns, but it may…
Two PFAS chemicals designated hazardous substances under Superfund law

Two PFAS chemicals designated hazardous substances under Superfund law

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released a final rule Friday to designate two types of PFAS chemicals as hazardous substances. Those two chemicals are perfluorooctanoic…
New Mexico Voices for Children has new leadership

New Mexico Voices for Children has new leadership

New Mexico Voices for Children, an organization that focuses on tax policy and how it impacts children in poverty, has new leadership. Gabrielle Uballez…
Abortion fund provider rebrands and holds open house

Abortion fund provider rebrands and holds open house

An abortion fund provider unveiled a rebrand and offered an open house in Las Cruces to celebrate the organization’s new name, mission and values. …

GET INVOLVED

© 2023 New Mexico Political Report