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November 3, 2017, Massachusetts, USA - "Massachusetts may say goodbye to daylight saving time.", Becca Moszka, The Daily Free Press

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Cranberry harvest in Massachusetts Photo Alexander Krivenyshev WorldTimeZone
Massachusetts may say goodbye to daylight saving time

Under Eastern Standard Time, Bostonians have grown used to setting their clocks back in the winter to darker evenings, and jumping an hour ahead of schedule in the spring — but this time-hopping method may be coming to an end soon.

Massachusetts officials have been considering changing time zones to Atlantic Time, thus eliminating daylight savings and making it a little lighter during winter afternoons.

The Special Commission on the Commonwealth’s Time Zone, a commission designated to studying how Massachusetts would go about switching zones, published their final report Wednesday. It found many benefits to ridding Massachusetts of daylight savings time including a reduction in crime, energy usage, work-related injuries and traffic fatalities, as well as an increase in economic development.

Despite several drawbacks to switching to Atlantic Time enumerated in the report, such as complications in interstate travel, broadcasting and school start-times, the commission ultimately decided the benefits won-out, according to the report.

“If Massachusetts does move to the Atlantic Time Zone and opts out of DST, then the Commonwealth would be an hour ahead of the rest of the East coast for roughly four months each year,” the report stated.

Tom Emswiler, a public health advocate and member of the commission, said he wrote an op-ed for The Boston Globe that ultimately led to people considering changing time zones. This then turned into a “by request” petition through his local senator.

The commission has now voted in favor of the potential bill, but agreed it should not go into effect unless the other New England states, like Maine, New Hampshire and Rhode Island, also agree to eliminate daylight savings. ...........................

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