UNITED STATES CODE

TITLE 15 - COMMERCE AND TRADE

CHAPTER 6 - WEIGHTS AND MEASURES AND STANDARD TIME

SUBCHAPTER IX - STANDARD TIME

§ 260. Congressional declaration of policy; adoption and observance of uniform standard of time; authority of Secretary of Transportation

It is the policy of the United States to promote the adoption and observance of uniform time within the standard time zones prescribed by sections 261 to 264 of this title, as modified by section 265 of this title. To this end the Secretary of Transportation is authorized and directed to foster and promote widespread and uniform adoption and observance of the same standard of time within and throughout each such standard time zone.

§ 260a. Advancement of time or changeover dates


§ 261. Zones for standard time; interstate or foreign commerce

For the purpose of establishing the standard time of the United States, the territory of the United States shall be divided into eight zones in the manner provided in this section. Except as provided in section 260a(a) of this title, the standard time of the first zone shall be based on the mean solar time of the sixtieth degree of longitude west from Greenwich; that of the second zone on the seventy-fifth degree; that of the third zone on the ninetieth degree; that of the fourth zone on the one hundred and fifth degree; that of the fifth zone on the one hundred and twentieth degree; that of the sixth zone on the one hundred and thirty-fifth degree; that of the seventh zone on the one hundred and fiftieth degree; and that of the eighth zone on the one hundred and sixty-fifth degree. The limits of each zone shall be defined by an order of the Secretary of Transportation, having regard for the convenience of commerce and the existing junction points and division points of common carriers engaged in interstate or foreign commerce, and any such order may be modified from time to time. As used in sections 261 to 264 of this title, the term ''interstate or foreign commerce'' means commerce between a State, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or any possession of the United States and any place outside thereof.

§ 262. Duty to observe standard time of zones

Within the respective zones created under the authority of sections 261 to 264 of this title the standard time of the zone shall insofar as practicable (as determined by the Secretary of Transportation) govern the movement of all common carriers engaged in interstate or foreign commerce. In all statutes, orders, rules, and regulations relating to the time of performance of any act by any officer or department of the United States, whether in the legislative, executive, or judicial branches of the Government, or relating to the time within which any rights shall accrue or determine, or within which any act shall or shall not be performed by any person subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, it shall be understood and intended that the time shall insofar as practicable (as determined by the Secretary of Transportation) be the United States standard time of the zone within which the act is to be performed.

§ 263. Designation of zone standard times

The standard time of the first zone shall be known and designated as Atlantic standard time; that of the second zone shall be known and designated as eastern standard time; that of the third zone shall be known and designated as central standard time; that of the fourth zone shall be known and designated as mountain standard time; that of the fifth zone shall be known and designated as Pacific standard time; that of the sixth zone shall be known and designated as Alaska standard time; that of the seventh zone shall be known and designated as Hawaii-Aleutian standard time; and that of the eighth zone shall be known and designated as Samoa standard time.

§ 264. Part of Idaho in third zone

In the division of territory, and in the definition of the limits of each zone, as provided in sections 261 to 264 of this title, so much of the State of Idaho as lies south of the Salmon River, traversing the State from east to west near forty-five degree thirty minutes latitude, shall be embraced in the third zone: Provided, That common carriers within such portion of the State of Idaho may conduct their operations on Pacific time.

§ 265. Transfer of certain territory to standard central-time zone

The Panhandle and Plains sections of Texas and Oklahoma are transferred to and placed within the United States standard central-time zone.

The Secretary of Transportation is authorized and directed to issue an order placing the western boundary line of the United States standard central-time zone insofar as the same affect Texas and Oklahoma as follows:

Beginning at a point where such western boundary time zone line crosses the State boundary line between Kansas and Oklahoma; thence westerly along said State boundary line to the northwest corner of the State of Oklahoma; thence in a southerly direction along the west State boundary line of Oklahoma and the west State boundary line of Texas to the southeastern corner of the State of New Mexico; thence in a westerly direction along the State boundary line between the States of Texas and New Mexico to the Rio Grande River; thence down the Rio Grande River as the boundary line between the United States and Mexico: Provided, That the Chicago, Rock Island and Gulf Railway Company and the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railway Company may use Tucumcari, New Mexico, as the point at which they change from central to mountain time and vice versa; the Colorado Southern and Fort Worth and Denver City Railway Companies may use Sixela, New Mexico, as such changing point; the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway Company and other branches of the Santa Fe system may use Clovis, New Mexico, as such changing point, and those railways running into or through El Paso may use El Paso as such point: Provided further, That this section shall not, except as herein provided, interfere with the adjustment of time zones as established by the Secretary of Transportation.


§ 267. ``State'' defined

As used in this Act, the term ``State'' includes the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or any possession of the United States.
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Note: Contrary to the exact wording of the above statute, Standard Time does not change with time of year. In practice, the time in effect (the Civil Time) is either Standard Time or Daylight-Saving Time.