About mexican DST

Jesper Nørgaard jnorgard at Prodigy.Net.mx
Fri Oct 5 00:03:09 UTC 2001

+# From Reuters (2001-09-04):
+# Mexico's Supreme Court on Tuesday declared that daylight savings was
+# unconstitutional in Mexico City, creating the possibility the
+# capital will be in a different time zone from the rest of the nation
+# next year....  The Supreme Court's ruling takes effect at 2:00
+# a.m. (0800 GMT) on Sept. 30, when Mexico is scheduled to revert to
+# standard time. "This is so residents of the Federal District are not
+# subject to unexpected time changes," a statement from the court said.

 * Mexico's Supreme Court has declared that daylight savings is
   unconstitutional in Mexico City.  For now, we'll assume that
   Mexico City will not observe DST next year.  Quite possibly
   this will change.  (Thanks to Scott Harrington for this.)


Above a couple of quotes from Paul Eggert's last mail. As a resident of Mexico I
would like to clarify a couple of points. I happen to believe that most likely
Mexico will still apply daylight saving next year, despite public protests,
but this is my personal opinion and remains to be seen. However, I strongly
believe Reuter's interpretation of the Supreme Court case to be incorrect and
pretentious. It says that "daylight savings is unconstitutional in Mexico City".
The court said no such thing. It made two separate rulings where one handled the
decree from Mexico City mayor Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador which stated
that Mexico City should *not* observe DST, and a decree from mexican
president Vicente Fox that defined DST rules in all of the Republic. In both
cases it deemed the decrees (not DST itself) unconstitutional. There is a big
difference. It would be like if the president had put an extra tax on chewing
gum, and a court rule had said that he had no authority to do so, then the
conclusion would be that all taxes have been deemed unconstitutional by
the court?!?!

The clear result of the Supreme Court rulings is that DST and time zones are a matter
under the authority of the Congress (Congreso de la Unión). Since they have
not yet (as far as I know) spoken about this issue, we don't know which way
they are leaning. Because of the documented savings in electricity I think they
are more likely to continue DST, but that is for them to say, not for me.

The Reuter article continues "... creating the possibility the
capital will be in a different time zone from the rest of the nation
next year.... ". This is really how the devil reads the bible. How can the change
from nation-wide authority of setting DST rules from the president to the
congress effect that suddenly the capital will be in a different time zone from
the rest of Mexico? While the congress may decide to change current rules
I think it is extremely unlikely that they will make rules that will make Mexico
City different to the rest of Mexico, since nobody wants that solution, not
even the most fundamentalist DST opposers.

For the tz database I don't really care how we put this at the moment. I am sure we
will get a congress decision before first Sunday of May 2002 when DST would start 
again if we stick to the old presidential rule.


Jesper Nørgaard Welen
Email: jnorgard at Prodigy.Net.mx	
Project Leader (Líder de Proyecto) Software
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