Changing Daylight Savings Time in Massachusetts

Grace Keith, Contributor

Of recent years, many residents in Massachusetts and New England have discussed the idea of keeping clock time consistent year round. According to WBUR, the idea would mean to stop, “falling back,” and, “springing ahead,” at the change of seasons. This would result in winter nights that are less dark with more lasting daylight. If Massachusetts were to get rid of daylight savings time, they would not have to set their clocks back in November like the rest of the United States.

WBUR tells us that Benjamin Franklin was the first to propose the idea of changing the time of day, so that the French could start their work earlier during the sunny hours and save on candle wax. The United States enforced Daylight Savings time across 48 states in 1962 to coordinate ordinary working hours with the availability of sunlight.

The main critics of daylight savings time reside on the eastern coast. WBUR says a native named Dean Pike of Eastport, Maine states: “The minute you set that clock back, and it’s darker earlier it’s just, bleh, you know?…In the fall, it just kills us. You know it’s better for us to have it lighter later.” Dean’s hometown is one of the first to see the sun rise, but is also the first to see the sun set, as early as 4:00 PM. Eastport is the nation’s easternmost city.

According to the New York Post a resident named Tom Eisenhower from Quincy, Canada stated, “When I moved up here in 2011 I was horrified when the sun set at 4:11 p.m. and I thought to myself there has to be a better way.” Tom wrote a piece about the issue in a widely read newspaper in his area, and asked his state commissioner to file a bill for change.

On the opposing side, a man named Ben King who works early in the morning as a barista at Portland’s Coffee By Design, says that the morning sun is a blessing he’d like to hold onto right through winter. “People want to start their day in the light versus the end of the day. We’re used to it getting dark, so it really doesn’t matter what time it gets dark,” he said on WBUR radio.

Some statistics show that there is an increase in  the amount of heart attacks and car crashes that correlate with the jump in the change of time as sleep patterns are altered. Research shows that people suffer a type of jet-leg that can be detrimental to public health.

Although ending the time change would result in energy savings and less seasonal depression or jet-leg, many argue that it would be impractical for Massachusetts to make this change if the rest of New England does not. Also if the sun sets later in the day it would rise later in the morning, posing safety issues for those children that must walk to school. Some argue that we are just trading one problem for another.

This would be an extreme change, yet the idea of it is becoming popular quick. In Massachusetts, a commission appointed by governor Charlie Baker is set to make motions and communications about this recommendation for change within a month or two. Many lawmakers in New England have submitted bills about the issue. It is just a matter of time before we start waking up to darkness and doing homework at seven o’clock in the winter with the sun still setting.


“Stopping The Clock-Hop: New England States Tick Through Daylight Saving Time Proposals.” Stopping The Clock-Hop: New England States Tick Through Daylight Saving Time Proposals | WBUR News,

Press, Associated. “Massachusetts Considers Observing Daylight Saving Time Year-Round.”New York Post, New York Post, 12 Jan. 2017,

Picture Credit:

Hamersley, Kelsey. “The Night of Stars.” Pinterest, 18 Feb. 2014,