B.C. Premier John Horgan and Washington Gov. Jay Inslee arrive for annual Cascadia conference in Vancouver, Oct. 10, 2018. They have agreed to coordinate the permanent switch to daylight saving time. (B.C. government)

B.C. Premier John Horgan and Washington Gov. Jay Inslee arrive for annual Cascadia conference in Vancouver, Oct. 10, 2018. They have agreed to coordinate the permanent switch to daylight saving time. (B.C. government)

B.C. still awaiting U.S. approval to eliminate daylight saving time

Clocks going back one hour Nov. 1 in Washington too

B.C. and Washington state have both passed legislation to eliminate seasonal clock changes, but until the U.S. Congress approves the change for western states, residents on both sides of the border will still have to “fall back” by an hour at 2 a.m. Nov. 1.

Since the issue was first raised more than 10 years ago, B.C. governments have been consistent that B.C., Yukon, Washington, Oregon and California need to have coordinated time for airline schedules and other key functions of their integrated economies. Daylight Saving Time is scheduled to return in March 2021 unless something changes south of the border.

The Peace River and East Kootenay regions of B.C. have long been on daylight saving time all year round, to facilitate trade with Alberta and B.C.’s legislation permits the province to follow suit.

(story continues below)

RELATED: Standard time better for public health, researchers say

B.C. passed its law in the fall of 2019 and could go ahead on its own, while Washington and other states need the U.S. Congress to approve year-round time. Premier John Horgan has been pushing for the change, which is overwhelmingly popular with the public, but his discussions with state governors were pushed aside by the COVID-19 pandemic this spring.

Last asked about time changes in late February, Horgan noted B.C.’s legislation is in place and it is still his intention to make the switch.

“But we also heard from British Columbians that they felt having the same time zone as our current neighbours, Washington, Oregon and California, was the best way to go,” Horgan told reporters at the B.C. legislature Feb. 27. “The likelihood of Congressional approval of this is even less today that it was in the fall.”

Washington and Oregon have passed state legislation and a majority of California voters supported going to Daylight Saving Time permanently. But The U.S. Congress has not approved the change, and California’s Senate has also heard concerns about being out of step with Mexico.


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tfletcher@blackpress.ca

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