Holiday Hours: Labor Day

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Labor Day is being celebrated Monday, Sept. 7. Labor Day was established as a federal holiday in 1971 by Congress and is held on the first Monday of September. Read a history of Labor Day here.

The first Labor Day holiday was celebrated on Tuesday, Sept. 5, 1882, in New York City, in accordance with the plans of the Central Labor Union. The union encouraged the development of a workingman's holiday and a number of states began setting a day aside. Parades and picnics or similar events were not uncommon in its early days; it is now seen as part of the last three-day weekend of the summer prior to the start of school in many localities. 

Massachusetts was among the first states to recognize Labor Day and the first to institute a minimum wage on June 4, 1912.

The fourth U.S secretary of labor, and the first woman to hold a Cabinet position, was Frances Perkins, born in Boston in 1880. Perkins, who attended Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley, is considered the architect of the Social Security Act. The headquarters of the Department of Labor is named after her.

Closed:
Federal, state and local offices; no mail delivery.
Banks; Wall Street
Public colleges and schools, most private schools
Public libraries
Most offices and businesses
BRTA is not running


No trash pickup in Pittsfield; one-day delay


Open:
Most retail outlets, groceries
Restaurants and bars, by choice
Convenience stores

MassDOT update:
Heaviest Labor Day traffic on the Massachusetts Turnpike (I-90) is expected on Thursday and Friday westbound and Monday afternoon-evening eastbound. Free coffee will be served at the 18 service plazas along major state highways on Monday night, Sept. 7, from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 3. The plazas serving free coffee include 11 service plazas along I-90 plus plazas along Route 3 in Plymouth, Route 128 in Beverly, Route 128/I-95 in Newton and Lexington, Route 6 in Barnstable, and the Route 24 northbound and southbound plazas.

All state construction outside of fixed work zones will be halted from 5 a.m., Friday, Sept. 4, until the start of normal business hours on Tuesday, Sept. 8.

Sign up at the 511 Traveler Information Service to receive personalized travel information alerts via email, text or telephone. MassDOT as always reminds drivers to avoid using cell phones while driving. Call into the 511 service before departing.   

To save time, money and gas, motorists who have not yet done so are encouraged to join E-ZPass to avoid waiting in line at cash toll booths.


Tags: holiday hours,   

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Remote Work May Offer Financial Benefits

Submitted by Edward Jones
During the COVID-19 pandemic, many of us have been forced to work from home. But once we've moved past the virus, many workers may continue working from home. More than one-third of companies with employees who started working from home now think that remote work will stay more common post-pandemic, according to a Harvard Business School study. This shift to at-home work can affect people's lives in many ways – and it may end up providing workers with some long-term financial advantages.
 
If you're one of those who will continue working remotely, either full time or at least a few days a week, how might you benefit? Here are a few possibilities:
 
  • Reduced transportation costs – Over time, you can spend a lot of money commuting to and from work. The average commuter spends $2,000 to $5,000 per year on transportation costs, including gas, car maintenance, public transportation and other expenses, depending on where they live, according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis and the U.S. Census Bureau. If you are going to work primarily from home, you should be able to greatly reduce these costs.
  • Potentially lower car insurance premiums – Your auto insurance premiums are partially based on how many miles you drive each year. So, if you were to significantly reduce these miles by working from home, you might qualify for lower rates.
  • Lower expenditures on lunches – If you typically eat lunch in restaurants or get takeout while at work, you could easily be spending $50 or more per week – even more if you regularly get coffee drinks to go. By these figures, you could end up spending around $3,000 a year. Think how much you could reduce this bill by eating lunch at home during your remote workday.
  • Lower clothing costs – Despite the rise in "casual dress" days, plenty of workers still need to maintain appropriate office attire. By working from home, you can "dress down," reducing your clothing costs and dry-cleaning bills.
As you can see, it may be possible for you to save quite a bit of money by working from home. How can you use your savings to help meet your long-term financial goals, such as achieving a comfortable retirement?
 
For one thing, you could boost your investments. Let's suppose that you can save $2,500 each year by working remotely. If you were to invest this amount in a tax-deferred account, such as an IRA or your 401(k) or similar employer-sponsored plan and earned a hypothetical 6 percent annual return for 20 years, you'd accumulate more than $97,000 – and if you kept going for an additional 10 years, you'd have nearly $210,000. You'd eventually pay taxes on the amount you withdrew from these accounts (and withdrawals prior to age 59½ may be subject to a 10% IRS penalty), but you'd still end up pretty far ahead of where you'd be otherwise.)
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