Daylight saving time ended Sunday; Don’t lose sleep over voting

At 2 a.m. Sunday — or whenever they woke up — Ohioans should have set their clocks back an hour as daylight saving time came to an end.

If they didn’t, they might find any attempts to vote first thing in the morning are premature.

Monday is the last day for early in-person voting, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. On Tuesday, Election Day itself, polls will be open from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Absentee ballots being returned in person must be delivered to county board of elections offices by 7:30 p.m. on Election Day.

The end of daylight saving time coincides closely with every election, said Brian Sleeth, Warren County Board of Elections director and president of the Ohio Association of Election Officials. That’s annoying, but hasn’t impacted election administration, he said.

“One year our front doors didn’t unlock, but I think the county got that under control,” Sleeth said.

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Nor has it hindered voters, he said; since clocks are reset to an hour earlier, people who forget might arrive before polls open, but won’t be too late.

As long as a voter is in line when polls close, they must still be allowed to cast their ballot, according to Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose’s office.

Legislators have tried for several years to do away with the time change. The latest attempt is House Concurrent Resolution 13, sponsored by state Reps. Rodney Creech, R-West Alexandria, and Kyle Koehler, R-Springfield, which urges the federal government to make daylight saving time permanent by passing the Sunshine Protection Act.

The resolution passed the Ohio House in December 2021 and was reported out of the Senate General Government Budget Committee in March. The General Assembly has regularly passed similar resolutions since 2018.

The federal Sunshine Protection Act passed the U.S Senate in March but stalled in the U.S. House. If the bill doesn’t pass by the end of the year it would have to be reintroduced, as has already happened several times.

This year will mark the last time change in Mexico, which abolished daylight saving time.

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