JEFFERSON CITY (AP) - Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon is giving state employees an extra day off around Thanksgiving.
State offices are closed by law on Thanksgiving. Nixon has issued an executive order also closing state offices the Friday after Thanksgiving.
For many years, a four-day holiday weekend was the norm in Missouri government.
But Nixon kept state offices open on the Friday after Thanksgiving in 2010 and 2011, citing budget concerns.
Holidays have cost the state money because some employees who must work - such as prison guards - have been able to choose whether to claim extra time off or accept holiday bonus pay.
Nixon says the budget has improved enough to give employees the extra day off. He also extended the Thanksgiving break last year.