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Dominican Republic Public Holidays Amendment Update

Source: Portal del Senado de la República Dominicana (Santo Domingo)
Posted on Thursday, September 6, 2012

The Dominican Republic's Senate has approved on second reading another bill to remove the January 6 and January 26 annual non-working public holidays from the scope of the law 139-97 which regulates non-working public holidays in the Dominican Republic.

Very similar legislation had been passed unanimously by the Senate of the Dominican Republic, last year (2011-04-01), but then, at the beginning of this year (2012-01-26), the Dominican Republic's lower house of parliament (Cámara de Diputados) let it lapse (expire).

These amendments, initially introduced at the beginning of last year (2011-01-28) would add 2 public holidays to the list of fixed-date public holidays covered by the Ley número 139-97 which governs the observance of mid-week public holidays: the Día de los Santos Reyes (January 6) and the Natalicio de Juan Pablo Duarte (January 26). This would leave only the May 1, August 16 and November 6 public holidays to move when they fall on a Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday.

Ever since its passage (1997-06-19), the Ley No. 139-97 is regularly attacked (2010-06-18, 2010-02-09, 2009-11-22, 2009-11-08, and 2008-05-24) by many who think that moving religious holidays is blaspheme, while the move of historical national holidays is unpatriotic.

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