Pennsylvania has to turn clocks back for daylight saving time? Didn’t lawmakers end it?

Pennsylvania residents will soon gain an hour when they set their clocks back at 2 a.m. Nov. 5 for the end of daylight saving time, which began in March.

But haven’t state legislators tried to end the practice of springing forward and falling back?

Lawmakers in the commonwealth have introduced many bills aiming to end clock-changing, and U.S. senators have tried, too. Here’s what to know about the state of daylight saving time in Pennsylvania.

Daylight saving time legislation in Pennsylvania

A Pennsylvania Senate committee approved a resolution in April to urge the U.S. Congress to establish permanent daylight saving time, ABC 27 reported. State governments are unable to choose permanent daylight saving time, and such a change would require approval at the federal level.

The Pennsylvania legislature tried another tactic when lawmakers introduced a bill in 2021 that would end the use of daylight saving time in the commonwealth, but it was “laid on the table” in January 2022 and essentially died.

At least one Pennsylvania lawmaker has recently urged the U.S. Congress to make daylight saving time permanent.

These recent bills are far from the only effort to end clock-changing, and the U.S. Senate has signed off on similar legislation for the nation. So far, Hawaii and Arizona are the only states in the country that don’t observe daylight saving time, and the Navajo Nation portion of Arizona does practice daylight saving.

The history of daylight saving

Daylight saving time was made a legal requirement by the Uniform Time Act of 1966, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics reports.

State governments cannot independently change time zones or the length of daylight saving time, the department reports, but they can exempt themselves from daylight saving time.

“States do not have the authority to choose to be on permanent Daylight Saving Time,” the U.S. Department of Transportation website reads.

Next year’s daylight saving time will begin March 10, 2024.

How does daylight saving affect sleep?

While Pennsylvania residents will gain an hour Nov. 5, the time change might not actually translate to more sleep.

“There is little evidence of extra sleep” on the fall night when daylight saving ends, according to a 2013 article from the Sleep Medicine Reviews journal, and you might actually be losing rest.

“The cumulative effect of five consecutive days of earlier rise times following the autumn change again suggests a net loss of sleep across the week,” the article’s abstract reads.

The end of daylight saving time has also been linked to other issues, such as increased collisions with deer, a 2022 article published by Current Biology reports.

While you might be less well-rested when the time changes this November, a March article from the Mayo Clinic Health System offers tips on how to reduce your sleep loss:

  • If you feel tired a few days after daylight saving time ends, take a 15-to 20-minute nap in the early afternoon.

  • Assess whether naps are helpful to you. Napping can hurt nighttime sleep for some people, while others may benefit from short naps.

  • Make an effort to be well-rested before the time changes.