The town of Harpswell will observe Juneteenth as a paid holiday in 2022, following recent moves by the federal and state governments to make June 19 a holiday.

“This holiday will raise awareness of the day that has come to mark the end of slavery in the U.S., when federal troops went to Galveston, Texas to ensure that slaves were free, two years after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation,” Town Administrator Kristi K. Eiane said in a memo to the board of selectmen.

“It really is an important date and the country is recognizing it and I think it’s important that the town of Harpswell recognize it,” Eiane said at a selectmen’s meeting June 24.

The board of selectmen voted 3-0 to amend the town’s personnel policy, adding Juneteenth as a paid holiday.