No Juneteenth holiday for Northport this year

By WVUA 23 News Reporter Jayda Russell

The City of Northport will not observe Juneteenth as a paid holiday for city employees on Monday, June 20.

Mayor Bobby Herndon explained the city did not plan for the now federal holiday when it laid out this year’s budget in September

“We would like to have that included in the new budget year, instead of saying, ‘Hey, we’re going to put in a quarter of a million dollars to pay for this holiday’ when it comes up here very shortly.”

The Northport City Council recently approved bonuses of $2 for every month served for retired employees who had been with the city for more than 25 years, coming to a grand distribution total of around $82,000.

Juneteenth celebrates the emancipation of enslaved Black people in Galveston, Texas in 1865.

While President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation freed those enslaved people in the Confederate states in 1863, it was not until the passage of the 13th Amendment in 1865 that slavery ended across the country.

President Joe Biden declared Juneteenth a federal holiday last June, and the City of Tuscaloosa will have the holiday as a paid-day off for the second year in a row.

“I think it needs to be celebrated, and as far as I know, next year it will be paid time off,” Herndon said.

The city approved this year’s budget last September, three months after Juneteenth was recognized as a federal holiday.

Categories: Local News