The announcement this week confirming the previously suggested intention that Ireland would increase the number of Public Holidays from 9 to 10 is not surprising .
Given the seeming bend-over-backwards similar declarations from the Tánaiste Leo Varadkar ever since he became Minister at the Department of Enterprise and Employment Affairs, employers have come to expect a blind eye and deaf ear when putting forward their concerns.
While it can be pointed out that Ireland has fewer Public Holidays than many other European countries, many of these States do not provide for the transfer of obligations when the dates occur on weekends. A commemorative Public Holiday to acknowledge the real pain, suffering and loss incurred through the Pandemic is not unreasonable, although not immediately following the National holiday, given that we most likely will still be observing some restrictions.
The installation of a new and permanent Public Holiday from next year is a different matter entirely.
Unless St Bridget’s Day falls on a Friday, when the Holiday will be observed on that day, the Monday closest to February 1st will be a Public Holiday.
For retail employers, the additional costs incurred will never have the ability for offset through extra Holiday-oriented sales as against the benefits many enjoy during the May and Summer ones.
The extra cost to your annual payroll is €3.70 per €1, 000 PRSI included, based on calculations below.
At €12ph a 39 hr per week employee has a wage of 12 x 39 x 52 = €24,336 plus 11.05% ER PRSI €2,689 = €27,025 plus currently 9 Public hols (€27025\ 260 days = €103.94 per day x 9) €935 = €27,960 total cost
Now €28064 ; hourly cost €13.84
Extra €104 is 0.37% onto payroll.
Public hols are 10 days extra pay onto 260 worked days so 3.85% extra (previously 3.46%).
Although ER is “only” 8.8% for those earning less than €410 (NMW rate) ,this rate is fast becoming redundant in many sectors and regions for “full-time” workers.