The Directorate-General of Personnel Administration is considering mandating local governments to make a public holiday a work day to make up for its earlier decision to allow people to take time off from work or school on a typhoon day.
The idea came from a recent meeting called by the agency to discuss guidelines on how local governments decide that workplaces and schools should be closed on a typhoon day, which was attended by Central Weather Bureau and local government officials.
Personnel Administration Minister Frank Huang (黃富源) said the idea was proposed to make it easier to decide whether to declare a typhoon day, but added that the agency would only make a final decision once it gets a cross-section of public opinion.
Mayors or county commissioners often find it hard to declare a typhoon day based on weather forecasts, because the announcement of the closure of workplaces and schools to save people from dangerous weather conditions could arouse complaints from businesses if the weather turns out to be fine.
According to the Directorate-General of Personnel Administration, in recent years there has been an average of 3.6 working days per year declared a day off because of typhoons.
If a typhoon day holiday is declared on a day when the weather turns out fine, then it would be a good idea if local government heads could decide to award a compensatory work day in a timely and decisive manner, Executive Yuan spokesperson Hu Yu-wei (胡幼偉) said.
Huang said the idea was also aimed at providing people with greater access to government departments to make up for time lost when public services were unnecessarily suspended on declared typhoon days that turn out to have reasonable weather.