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Government Workers Getting Leave Time for Christmas Festival

Dec. 17, 2008 — A proclamation by Gov. John deJongh Jr. authorizes administrative leave to government workers for the 2008-09 Christmas Festival Season.
The annual Crucian Christmas Festival is "an opportunity for Virgin Islanders to play the role of goodwill ambassadors for the territory," deJongh said, according to a Government House news release. The governor granted administrative leave to government employees deemed "non-essential," as follows:
St. Croix District Only
— Dec. 30 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. for the Festival J'ouvert and the Festival Food, Arts and Craft Fair.
— Dec. 24 from 12 noon to 5 p.m. for Christmas Eve;
— Dec. 31 from 12 noon to 5 p.m. for New Year's Eve; and
— Jan. 2 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. for the Festival Children's Parade.
The Christmas holiday season is one of "merriment, joy and gathering of family and friends to enjoy and pass on the many cultural traditions of the festive occasion," deJongh proclaimed. "During this holiday season, many hundreds of visitors come to our islands to enjoy the sights and sounds of the territory."
Additionally, the governor said, the annual Crucian Christmas Festival "is a boost to our economy and helps to promote an understanding and appreciation of our culture."
DeJongh's proclamation authorizes commissioners and agency heads to grant administrative leave to non-essential employees to enjoy the festival season, and to encourage greater participation in the Crucian Festival Food Fair and enhance the celebration of the Christmas Festival by all residents and visitors, the release said.
The leave does not apply to essential employees, employees on regular or rotating shift, and employees on annual or sick leave.
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