8.56 – Paid Holiday Leave

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Scope: NMSU System

Source: ARP Chapter 8 | HR-Benefits

Rule Administrator:

Last Updated: 06/20/2013



See 2013 CBA Article 16, Sections 1, 2, 3, and 4

See also:

ARP 7.20 – Staff Overtime Pay or Comp Time

Revision History:

2017 Recompilation, formerly Rules 7.10 & 8.20 D.
06/20/2013 Amendment to Rule 7.10 approved by Board of Regents
10/22/2007 Amendment to Rule 8.20 approved by Board of Regents

A. Eligibility for Holiday Pay, Generally

Regular employees and non-regular term employees both full-time and part-time on a prorated basis are eligible for holiday pay.  Certain situations and/or employee status disqualify an employee from receiving holiday pay (See below).


B. Official Holidays

The university recognizes the following holidays:

  • Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
  • Spring Holiday (1 day)
  • Memorial Day
  • Independence Day
  • Labor Day
  • Thanksgiving Day
  • Friday following Thanksgiving Day
  • Winter Break (approximately a week ending with New Year’s Day)


C. Observance of Holiday

When a holiday falls on a Saturday, the preceding Friday is observed; when a holiday falls on a Sunday, the following Monday is observed.  If the beginning of the Winter Break (Christmas Eve Day) falls on a weekend, the preceding Friday is observed and if the end of the Winter Break (New Year’s Day) falls on a weekend, the following Monday is observed.


D. Holiday Preceded or Followed by Unexcused Absence from Work

Any eligible employee shall forfeit payment for any holiday if the employee has an unexcused absence on the last regular work day preceding such holiday or on the first regular work day following such holiday.


E. Employees on Leave Without Pay Status

Employees on leave without pay are not entitled to holiday pay.  An employee returning from leave without pay must be on the job at least one day for each day of the holiday period immediately before and after the holiday.


F. Issues Upon Separation from Employment

  1. To be eligible for holiday pay, any employee who voluntarily terminates with less than 5 years of regular service on or after a holiday must have worked one day (immediately following the holiday or holiday period) for each day of the holiday period. Leave will be considered as time worked only for those employees continuing permanent employment with the university.
  2. Employees with 5 or more consecutive years of regular service may retire or terminate on December 31 and be eligible for all holiday pay in December.
  3. If regular employees with 5 or more years of service retire or terminate after December 31 they must work and be physically present one day (immediately following the holiday period) for each day of holiday pay to be received. Leave will not be considered as time worked.


G. Issues Relating to Date of Initial Hire

  1. Any regular staff, 12-month faculty or non-regular term employee hired after the first Monday in December will be eligible for holiday pay on Christmas Day and New Year’s Day only.
  2. A staff employee’s first day of work may not begin on a holiday.


H. Holiday Pay

  1. Any nonexempt employee required to work on one of the official holidays and who does not receive a day off in lieu of the holiday, may be compensated at one and a half times the regular hourly rate in addition to the holiday pay regardless of the number of hours actually worked during the normal work week.
  2. If compensatory time, in lieu of payment, is granted for work performed on a holiday, it shall be granted at the rate of one and one half times the number of hours worked regardless of the number of hours actually worked during the normal work week.
  3. An employee whose normal work schedule does not include a day designated as an official university holiday may receive a day off in lieu of the holiday during the same work week in which the holiday falls.
  4. Payment for a holiday, annual leave, sick leave, administrative leave, compensatory time, or compassionate leave will be considered as hours worked only during a work week in which an official university holiday occurs. Otherwise, in order to be paid at the overtime rate, actual hours worked must be in excess of 40 hours for an employee’s work week.  If holiday hours and actual hours worked exceed 40 hours in a workweek, calculation of overtime hours will exclude holiday premium hours already compensated.