A group of Iowa House members want to brighten up people’s day by making daylight saving time permanent in the Hawkeye State.
HF 2015 would end the practice of forwarding clocks an hour starting at 2 a.m. on the second Sunday in March before rolling the hour back at 2 a.m. on the first Sunday in November. Instead, daylight saving time would become Iowa’s standard time.
This year, daylight saving time starts Sunday, March 13, and ends Sunday, Nov. 6.
The bill was sponsored by five Republicans and a Democrat: Megan Jones (R-Sioux Rapids), Brian Meyer (D-Des Moines), Mike Sexton (R-Rockwell City), Cherielynn Westrich (R-Ottumwa), John Wills (R-Spirit Lake), and Matt Windschitl (R-Missouri Valley).
Leslie Carpenter of Iowa Mental Health Advocacy registered in support of the bill. She and her husband, Scott, lobby on behalf of people living with serious brain illnesses such as schizophrenia, schizoaffective and bipolar disorders.
“We believe sticking with one system through the whole year would be beneficial for everyone’s mental health,” Leslie Carpenter said. “There well may be other considerations if this bill were to move forward, but from the standpoint of advocating for people with serious brain illnesses, I believe this would be of benefit.”
The Carpenters have a 31-year-old son who has schizoaffective disorder. Leslie Carpenter told Starting Line more daylight can help people like her or those who suffer from seasonal affective disorder.
“One of the things with his illness, and many others like him, is that things are much worse with both his voices and delusions at night, in the dark and especially after the time change every fall, and the onset of darkness earlier through the winter months,” Carpenter said. “There have been many times he has suffered psychiatric deterioration shortly after this time change, requiring hospitalization to stabilize.”
The bill has only been introduced but if it were to become law, Iowa would be the 20th state to enact legislation or resolutions in favor of year-round daylight saving time, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
Two similar bills were introduced during the 2021 legislative session.
by Ty Rushing