Mar 11, 2024 - News

Arizona decided in 1968 that it didn't need to save any daylight

Illustration of a sun as a clock with clouds in the sky.

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

It's that time of year when Arizonans get to be smug about not losing an hour to daylight saving time.

The big picture: On Sunday, most of the U.S. switched to daylight saving time, springing forward their clocks by an hour.

  • But Arizona is an anomaly when it comes to changing — or in our case, not — our clocks.
  • Unlike the rest of the state, the Navajo Nation, which is split between Arizona, New Mexico and Utah, recognizes daylight saving time.
  • Hawaii is the only other state that doesn't recognize daylight saving time.

Flashback: Arizona wasn't always an outlier on daylight savings.

  • Arizonans joined the rest of the country in changing their clocks with the advent of daylight saving time in 1918. Congress repealed the wartime law a year later.
  • President Franklin Roosevelt in 1942 imposed DST nationwide as a wartime measure, and the policy ended in 1945.
  • Arizona again implemented DST in 1967 after Congress re-established it through the Uniform Time Act.

Zoom in: More daylight means more energy consumption and more sunlight in our notorious hot desert summers, so Arizona's most recent experiment with daylight saving time lasted only a year.

  • The Legislature abolished it in March 1968. Lawmakers got the bill on Gov. Jack Williams' desk about a month before daylight saving went into effect.
  • Senate Majority Leader Chet Goldberg resisted the change and wanted the issue referred to the voters, but he eventually relented, according to contemporary news coverage.

Yes, but: Daylight saving time still affects us, even if our clocks never change.

  • If you communicate regularly with people in other states, keep the time change in mind.
  • Events, TV shows and other things scheduled outside Arizona remain at the same time there, but the time can be different here.
  • So remember, we're now on the same time as California instead of an hour ahead, and we're three hours behind the East Coast instead of two.

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