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Baxter County weighs adding MLK birthday as a paid holiday

October 9, 2017

MOUNTAIN HOME, Ark. (AP) — Baxter County officials will consider an ordinance to add a 10th paid holiday for their workers: Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

County Clerk Canda Reese says the ordinance could be approved by December. The Baxter Bulletin reported that, if approved, it would cost the county about $14,500. Law officers working that day would receive holiday pay.

Justice of the Peace Gary Smith told the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette that Baxter County is Arkansas’ only county to not observe King’s birthday as a paid holiday. County assessor Jayme Nicholson said it is frustrating for residents to not observe the holiday. As an example, she said it is possible for county residents to assess vehicles on the holiday but they cannot obtain a license plate because the local state revenue office is closed. The two chores often go hand-in-hand.

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