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Times of trouble.

Mexico City Mayor Manuel Lopez Obrador has picked his battle with President Vicente Fox, and no, it's not about fiscal reform or opening up the electricity sector, or, for that matter, anything the right and left usually fight about. The battle at hand, which has made it all the way to the Supreme Court, is whether denizens of the capital city will have to move their watches ahead one hour come May 1.

Daylight Savings Time has been a touchy subject in Mexico since it was adopted nationwide (with the exception of Sonora) by former President Ernesto Zedillo. But never has it unleashed such a violent storm of opposing opinions as when Lopez rejected Fox's Feb. mandate to move the clock's ahead for five months this summer.

Lopez says that Fox does not have the constitutional powers as president to mandate time changes, and has sent the question to the Supreme Court, which will decide on the matter by the end of April. Lopez also claims that the hour-change proponents' energy savings argument is "a fairy tale."

"In reality what exists are commitments between (the Mexican government) and the New York Stock Exchange so the markets will open at the same time. But I ask, "who will defend the people?'" Lopez told local press.

If Mexico City doesn't adopt the hour change, some observers have warned that the resulting time difference between D.F. federal buildings, schools and neighborhoods located in the State of Mexico and the rest of the city will cause confusion and chaos.
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Title Annotation:Mexico City time change
Author:Craddock, Catherine
Publication:Business Mexico
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1MEX
Date:Apr 1, 2001
Next Article:Monkey business.

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