Niles-South Bend time warp ends: Residents here turn clocks back Sunday
Published 7:32 pm Friday, October 24, 2003
By By BEN RAYMOND LODE / Niles Daily Star
NILES -- For Niles residents, daylight saving time ends Sunday at 2 a.m.
Residents here should turn their clocks back one hour at that time, or more reasonably, when they go to bed on Saturday night.
For those who live in Michigan and work in Indiana, the extra hour will mean more time at home with family and perhaps more time to relax.
Niles Mayor Mike McCauslin has worked at the University of Notre Dame for 21 years.
McCauslin said he has gotten used to the time difference between Michigan and Indiana over the years, but that doesn't mean he wouldn't mind change.
McCauslin thinks the time difference often confuses people, especially when people who live in the different time zones make plans together.
Having worked for more than two decades in Indiana, McCauslin has had ample opportunity to find out what people from Indiana think about the time difference.
Among the reasons Indiana residents don't want to change, he thinks, is because they want to stay on the same time as Chicago.
He also thinks many people are just reluctant to change.
McCauslin said he doesn't know whether the two states' legislatoure will be able to solve the time issue in the near future.
Colleen Chute, the wife of Niles City Council member Bob Chute, would like the two states to operate on the same time.
Chute said it would be nice to be on the same time as Indiana because it would give her more time with her husband, who works at the Federal Court building in South Bend.
Chute said her husband is usually home a little after six, which makes for pretty late suppers.
Chute also said the time difference gives her husband little time between coming home and having to leave again on the days of city council meetings.
City council meetings start at 7:30 p.m.
The main purpose of Daylight Saving Time is to make better use of daylight.
According to a web site devoted to Daylight Saving Time, we change our clocks during the summer months to move an hour of daylight from the morning to the evening.
Although some people may think the idea of daylight saving is new, it was first conceived by Benjamin Franklin during his stay as an American delegate in Paris in 1784.
The idea appeared in his essay, "An Economical Project."
However, information on the web site says the idea was first advocated seriously by a London builder, William Willett (1857-1915), in the pamphlet "Waste of Daylight" (1907) that proposed advancing clocks 20 minutes on each of four Sundays in April, and retarding them by the same amount on four Sundays in September
In addition to making summer days longer, daylight saving also saves energy.
Studies done by the U.S. Department of Transportation show that Daylight Saving Time trims the entire country's electricity usage by a significant, but small amount, of less than one percent each day with Daylight Saving Time.
However, it doesn't save energy all year round.
In the winter, the afternoon Daylight Saving Time advantage is offset by the morning's need for more lighting. In spring and fall, the advantage is less than one hour. So, Daylight Saving Time saves energy for lighting in all seasons of the year except for the four darkest months of winter when the afternoon advantage is offset.
It is common for fire departments to remind people they should change smoke alarm batteries at time changes. Chief Larry Lamb, Niles City Fire Department, said old batteries may work, but won't last as long as they need to if there is a fire.