The Indy Star has published an editorial entitled There’s no time for clock confusion. The Star says that clearing up Indiana clock confusion was the main premise behind adopting Daylight Saving Time. Nevermind that it was a pretext with nothing but anectdotal evidence supporting the claim that adopting DST would do anything to improve the economy or give any unemployed Hoosier a new job. The Star says that putting as much of Indiana as possible on the same time should remain a goal. I agree. Put the whole state on Central Time, and we have a deal. The Star doesn’t explicitly state a preference, but I get the idea they have Eastern Time in mind. But let me just reiterate, the whole State has never been on Eastern Time. The whole State has been on central time. And, prior to adopting of DST, the whole state was functionally on Central Daylight Time for 7 months out of the year except for those renegade counties around Cincinnati that were observing Eastern Daylight Time illegally.
May Beth Schneider also has an article in the Star entitled, Time Zone Plan to be a Hard Sell. It focuses on the split between St. Joseph County and Elkhart Counties. The story has a comment by Elkhart mayor, David Miller, that seems to suggest that in terms of influence, Elkhart is the dog and St. Joseph County is the tail. Perhaps my reading comprehension is flawed or Mayor Miller’s local pride got the better of him, but that’s clearly ridiculous. Basically, he is saying that, while he wants Elkhart and South Bend to be on the same time, he isn’t sure he wants Elkhart County to go Central because that would be the tail wagging the dog. Meanwhile, Logansport Mayor expresses a sense of defeatism. He thinks the local attitude is that the residents of Logansport don’t have much of a say in the matter, so why bother with upcoming hearings. As for other parts of the state, Rep. Crooks and Rep. Grubb pretty well sum it up:
Rep. David Crooks, the Washington Democrat who had led the fight against daylight-saving time in the legislature, said his Daviess County neighbors are upset. The county wanted to move to Central time to make daylight-saving time more palatable. With the time zone change, the county would have been aligned with Vanderburgh and other southwestern Indiana counties year-round.
The Transportation Department didn’t buy Daviess County’s request but did recommend that the county’s neighbors — Knox and Pike counties — move to Central time.
“People think its just ridiculous. Almost laughable,” Crooks said.
He will try to get the Republican majority in the House to revisit the issue and pass a statewide referendum letting voters say whether the state should be in the Central or Eastern time zone.
Rep. F. Dale Grubb, D-Covington, said turning back the clock on the time zone debate will be next to impossible next year. “The bottom line is, it’s going to be screwed up no matter what happens.”
Google revealed a column by Rod Rose of the Lebanon (Ind) Reporter in the Cushing (Oklahoma) Daily Citizen, the jist of which is summed up in these paragraphs:
before someone wound Danielsâ€™ clock, weâ€™d always known what time it was â€” Indiana is officially on Eastern time, except for five counties near Evansville and five near Chicago, where Central time is observed. What time is it in Indiana? Why, in 82 counties, itâ€™s Eastern Standard Time, 12 months a year.
That was apparently too complicated for Daniels and others who decided that what wasnâ€™t broken needed to be wound tighter.
The DOT recommendations only expand the wackiness.
. . .
Thereâ€™s only one solution for this: A referendum. Hoosiers should be given the option, next November, of a straight-up choice between Eastern and Central time for the entire state, and whether to observe daylight-saving time in that zone.
The Lafayette Journal & Courier has an editorial scolding the State and the Feds from their handling to date. The State dodged the question. The Feds threw it down to the counties. The result was a crazy quilt. But the J&C seems satisfied so long as White, Carroll, and Cass counties are forced to stay with Lafayette and Lafayette stays with Indianapolis. Hoosiers, the J&C says, will get used to the time no matter what it is. Very democratic of them.