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Holiday schedule set for Town

Town of Jonesborough employees will be given 14 days off in 2012 for holidays, one more than they received for this year.
The additional vacation day represents Election Day, and is required by federal law.
An initial proposal given to the Jonesborough Board of Mayor and Aldermen gave town employees 16 days off, including the day after Christmas and New Year’s Eve. Additional costs associated with the extra holidays caused Board of Mayor and Aldermen members to reconsider the proposal during the Nov. 14 BMA meeting.
“The biggest additional cost is for fire and police,” Town Recorder Abbey Miller told BMA members after Alderman Chuck Vest inquired about the expense. “The ones on duty (on those days) will be paid their pay and holiday pay.”
Miller also told BMA members it was “rare” for her office and the water department to be closed three days in a row, which would be the case at Christmas if employees were given off both the day before and the day after the holiday.
“I have a problem with it,” Alderman Mary Gearhart said. “I worked for the federal government and we always got 13 holidays.”
Gearhart said she did not think the town needed to be giving more holidays to its employees than the federal government offers to its workers.
Vest made a motion to amend the holiday schedule by removing Dec. 26, 2012, and Dec. 31, 2012, from the schedule, leaving 14 holidays for town employees. The motion passed with Gearhart also voting in favor of the revised schedule.
Alderman Jerome Fitzgerald voted against the motion, saying he supported the 16 days off for town employees.
Alderman Terry Countermine was absent from the meeting.