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Argentina's Senate Approves New Public Holidays Legislation

Source: Boletín Oficial de la República Argentina (Buenos Aires)
Posted on Friday, September 29, 2017

The Senate of Argentina has, in turn, approved by a vote of 59 to 0 and one abstention, the bill passed earlier this month in Argentina's Cámara de Diputados which gives back to the executive the ability to declare one-off bridge public holidays in Argentina, up to a maximum of 3 per year ("Faculta al Poder Ejecutivo a fijar hasta tres por año, aunque no será obligación").

The aforementioned bill was passed (2017-09-13) by the Argentine lower house (Cámara de Diputados), less than a year after President Mauricio Macri had eliminated one-off bridge public holidays in Argentina via the DNU 52/2017 (Decreto de Necesidad y Urgencia).

A year ago (2016-10-30), President Macri had announced that he would put a stop to the process of declaring one-off non-working public holidays in Argentina ("feriados con fines turísticos") effective with the calendar year 2017, sending to Congress a legislative proposal to end the process of declaring one-off non-working public holidays in Argentina (2016-12-02). But, faced with legislative delays (2017-01-23 and 2017-01-19), President Macri abandoned the legislative route and issued the Decreto de Necesidad y Urgencia (DNU 52/2017), as was done by his predecessor, President Kirchner, on two similar occasions (2010-11-03 and 2010-05-04).

However, due to sharp criticism for letting the date of the Macrh 24 and April 2 annual public holidays of Argentina change from year to year, and faced with many regions and municipalities declaring their own inamovible March 24 and April 2 public holidays, President Macri announced another the Decreto de Necesidad y Urgencia 80/2017 (2017-02-02 and 2017-01-30), thus further amending the legislation governing non-working public holidays in Argentina.

To become law, the bill must be signed by President Macri, which seems unlikely as the cancellation of long weekends was his initiative. But, in the world of Argentine public holidays, stranger things have happened.

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