County employees get additional day off

By Lew K. Cohn

Managing Editor

Burnet Bulletin

Burnet County employees got an early Christmas gift Tuesday, Sept. 24, in the form of another official vacation day.

Commissioners voted 4-0 to add Monday, Dec. 23, to the fiscal year 2020 holiday calendar after receiving a reconsideration request.

Last month, commissioners had adopted a holiday calendar with 14 days off, including two days for Christmas — Christmas Eve (Tuesday, Dec. 24) and Christmas Day (Wednesday, Dec. 25) — after rejecting a proposed day off for Thursday, Dec. 26.

County Clerk Janet Parker said some of her employees had expressed concern about having to travel on Christmas Day to get back home for work the next day.

“Each elected official does have the ability to establish what days their office is open,” Parker noted.

District Clerk Casie Walker suggested if commissioners were to consider an additional day off for employees, it would “make more sense to be closed Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday rather than being open just Monday and Friday during a week.”

County Judge James Oakley said the biggest impact he could see would be to customers at the vehicle registration office since the courts typically go on break during the holidays. Walker said she had spoken to employees in vehicle registration and they expressed their support for taking the first three days of the week off and being open Thursday and Friday after Christmas.

Burnet County Sheriff's Chief Deputy Mike Cummings pointed out that, while other county employees will benefit from the extra time off, “we'll still be here working,” noting BCSO must remain on duty 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

After some discussion, commissioners eventually agreed to adopt the additional day off, which now gives county employees 15 holidays during fiscal year 2020.

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