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Resolution to let voters decide Daylight Saving Time is dead

SALT LAKE CITY — A resolution that would allow voters to decide whether Utah stays on Daylight Saving Time will not advance in the legislature.

House Joint Resolution 2, sponsored by Rep. Norm Thurston, R-Provo, failed to pass out of the House Natural Resources Committee on a 5-4 vote (with four lawmakers absent). It came after opposition testimony from sporting groups and the Utah Farm Bureau, who favored it being lighter in the summer.

“We are not losing an hour of daylight,” Rep. Thurston said. “The cows get milked when the cows get milked and they don’t know the numbers on the clock.”

Rep. Thurston’s resolution would have put the issue of Daylight Saving Time on the 2018 ballot. He wanted voters to decide whether Utah remains changing its clocks or joins Arizona and Hawaii in opting out.

Lawmakers have said few issues generate such vigorous public comment as Daylight Saving Time. Twice a year, their inboxes are flooded with constituents weary of the back-and-forth of the clock. For years now, the Utah State Legislature has contemplated Daylight Saving Time but has failed to advance a bill over more pressing issues.