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School Workers Can Mourn Nixon, but Not on Overtime

April 27, 1994| From a Times Staff Writer

At the request of worried California education officials, President Clinton on Tuesday revised his executive order declaring today a day of mourning for Richard Nixon to make clear there was no intent to create a state or local holiday.

The President's original declaration urging Americans to honor the 37th President had raised the possibility of an overtime bill totaling $20 million for schools in California.

A court case arising from the "days of Thanksgiving" proclaimed by then-President George Bush at the end of the Persian Gulf War could have made some non-teaching school workers eligible for holiday pay in this instance. The case is pending before the California Supreme Court.

After California education officials were deluged with calls from school districts, they prevailed on the Clinton Administration to add language Tuesday specifying that the declaration applied only to the federal government.

"We are very grateful," said Maureen DiMarco, Gov. Pete Wilson's secretary for child development and education. "Clearly it is perfectly appropriate to have a national day of mourning. Nobody (in the federal government) realized the impact it could have."

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