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The latest idea for ditching daylight saving time in Colorado

Do you prefer 4:30 p.m. sunsets or 4:30 a.m. sunrises?

DENVER — Ditching the yearly time changes could be coming to a ballot near you.

Keeping Coloradans from changing clocks for daylight saving time has been unsuccessful for many years at the state Capitol.

The newest push is by State Sen. Jeff Bridges, D-Greenwood Village, and State Sen. Ray Scott, R-Grand Junction. It would place a question on the November ballot to keep Colorado on standard time -- winter hours.

"This is different in that it moves us to year-round standard time, not daylight [saving] time. We can't go to year-round daylight time because Congress won't let us," said Bridges.

Staying on daylight saving time would require approval by U.S. Congress. Staying on standard time can be done without an Act of Congress.

"It means that in the summer, yes, the sun would set at 8 p.m. instead of 9 p.m., which means you could actually get your kids to go to bed on time," said Bridges.

Staying on standard time would keep 4:30 p.m. sunsets in the winter, but it would also mean a 4:30 a.m. sunrise in the summer.

"I think this is the kind of issue that the people of Colorado deserve to have a direct say in. It's something that directly affects their life," said Bridges.

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Former Republican State Sen. Greg Brophy tried multiple times to get Colorado to stay on daylight saving time and one try, in 2013, to stay on standard time. None of his efforts have succeeded.

"I have reached out to Greg Brophy," said Bridges. "Greg has spent a great deal of his life dedicated to this issue."

Brophy was traveling on Friday, but said via text: "I prefer MDT (summer time) year-round, plus I think trying to stay on winter time year-round will draw opposition that otherwise would be silent."

The Colorado Secretary of State's office tracks who lobbies for and against legislation.

Colorado Ski Country USA and Vail Resorts are listed as "monitoring" this year's bill.

In previous years, those two groups have opposed the change.

In 2020, the Colorado Broadcasters Association, Motion Picture Association of America and Colorado Hotel & Lodging Association all opposed the attempt to stay on daylight saving time.

On Friday, a spokesman for Colorado Ski Country USA was out of town and unable to answer if the group opposes or supports an earlier sunrise.

A spokeswoman with Vail Resorts replied to an email saying, "We'll politely pass on this request."

The president of the Colorado Hotel & Lodging Association said the group opposed the 2020 version to support the ski industry. The group has not reviewed this year's version yet.

Colorado Golf Association does not have a position on this bill yet, which would create 4:30 a.m. tee times and would likely get rid of 7 p.m. and later summer tee times.

Arizona, Hawaii and parts of Indiana already stay on standard time. A Yale University study from 2009 looked at whether daylight saving time saved energy. The conclusion of the report was that standard time increased residential electricity demand. "DST saves on electricity used for illumination but increases electricity used for heating and cooling," the report stated.

The bill would have to pass both chambers of the state legislature, then be signed by the governor before appearing on the November ballot. If it makes the ballot, since it would change state statute and not amend the state's Constitution, it would require 50% plus one to pass.

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