Massachusetts Mulls Opening Stores on Thanksgiving and Christmas

For years the state of Massachusetts has declared all stores in the state closed on Thanksgiving and Christmas Day so that employees at least get those two days off every year. And for years they have debated whether or not that is a good idea.

With active commerce transacted online and across state lines supporters of changing the law say the state is losing big tax revenue dollars on these days. The new bill would allow opening on such days while giving employers options to provide days off for workers on other days.

It is an interesting debate in light of new trends in recent years for retailers nationwide to kick-off “Black Friday” sales events on Thanksgiving Day. While there has been widespread criticism of the practice retailers have gained huge sales from the effort. Some feel it keeps Massachusetts completely in the cold.

State Representative Tackey Chan (D-Quincy) said that there would be competition regardless of whether retail stores are open or closed.

“Competition of Connecticut, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont or New York, it’s going to occur regardless of whether we’re open on those days or not,” Chan said.

The bill would need approval from both the House and the Senate, and then a signature from Gov. Charlie Baker before retailers can open on these holidays. This legislation has been stuck on Beacon Hill for years.

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