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OFF THE CLOCK

Friday, 6th February, 2015

By Darrin Manuel

City should look east as SA goes WA time, says MP

 The Member for Murray-Darling John Williams says Broken Hill would have to break away from its alignment with South Australia if the state decides to switch to Western Australian time.

 The SA government is considering changing the state’s time zone to either align with Western Australia or the eastern states.

 Premier Jay Weatherill says a state-wide consultation process will take place, and would include Broken Hill and the NT, which also run on Central Standard Time.

 “South Australia’s half-hour time difference to the eastern states and 90 minutes difference to Western Australia can cause confusion across the spectrum of our daily lives - from sporting fixtures to public service administration and business transactions,” he said yesterday.

 “The business community has raised this issue with me on a number of occasions and I believe the time is right to put the broader question to the community about the day-to-day inconvenience of a half-hour time zone.”

 Investment and trade minister Martin Hamilton-Smith will lead the consultation process with the business community, major sporting bodies, people in the regions and the broader community.

 The minister acknowledged that people in the SA’s west would have significant concerns about a move towards Eastern Standard Time.

 “I am keen to explore the opportunity this change presents for making SA more connected to Australia and the international community,” he said.

 But John Williams said any move toward a western time zone would have to be ignored by Broken Hill, with a shift to Eastern Standard Time the most logical choice.

“Going to WA time would be crazy,” Mr WIlliams siad.

 “Just the effect it would have on the day, especially in winter. It would be dark at 4.30.

 “You’d have to make a break away (from SA) I think.

 “Eastern standard time would be a winner for us ... ultimately it wouldn’t have too much of an impact as it’s only a half hour.”

 The consultation process for the proposed change will begin immediately and is expected to take at least two months. - BDT/AAP

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