Courthouse, county offices to close Monday, June 20
The Ozark County Courthouse and county offices will be closed on Monday, June 20, in recognition of Juneteenth, which falls on Sunday, June 19.
This is the first time Juneteenth will be observed by Ozark County officials. The holiday just recently became an official Missouri state and federal holiday, meaning state and federal offices will be closed as well.
Juneteenth, short for June Nineteenth, marks the day when federal troops arrived in Galveston, Texas, in 1865 to take control of the state and ensure that all enslaved people were freed.
The holiday was first recognized in Texas.
In Ozark County, commissioners discussed the matter briefly on May 23, May 31 and June 6, before voting to take the day off.
“We’ll try it this year and see how it goes,” said Presiding County Commissioner John Turner.
Western District Commissioner Layne Nance said his only concern was that the road crews really needed to be working since several county roads have been damaged or needed cleanup after heavy spring rains.
“We’re going to hear about it whether we work it or whether we take it off,” Nance said, who added that he has been operating a road grader several days each week to help out. “I’m not getting paid to do it, but we gotta do what we gotta do,” Nance said.
In other county business, commissioners said they are waiting for an analysis to be done on what size generator the courthouse would require before moving ahead with plans to acquire a propane-powered electric generator to provide backup power for the courthouse.
Commissioners have said that they hope to use grant money to buy and install the generator.