AUGUSTA – Gov. Paul LePage called an emergency session of the legislature today for a vote on a proposal to turn the regulation of time over to private enterprise.
“Our state’s businesses struggle to compete against those in other states because we are positioned at the far north of the country,” explained the governor’s spokeshuman, Adrienne Bennett. “This results in huge energy costs, not only from heating, but from having to keep lights on longer.”
Portland will see 8 hours and 55 minutes of daylight tomorrow, compared to more than 10 hours of sunshine in Savannah, Georgia. Business leaders say making time a function of the private sector will result in new efficiencies.
Analysts say the first step will be to downsize the Maine minute to 54 seconds, which would result in almost an hour being added to the workday and hundreds of jobs being added in the watchmaking sector.
Meanwhile, education costs will be drastically reduced, as schools will be able to meet their statutory obligations to children in 142 days rather than 180.
Lawmakers unanimously approved the measure. “This will create parity with the less latitudinally challenged areas of the country,” said Rep. Brian Bolduc (D-Auburn). “The only negative aspect is that the night also becomes longer, but we can kick that can down the road. Change happens slowly sometimes.”