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Baker Receives Big Fine For Working Too Hard.

A French baker reportedly received a hefty fine for extending business hours in 2017 for violating the county's labor laws.

Bakery owner Cedric Vaivre kept his business open seven days a week last summer, which prompted a A[pounds sterling]2,600 ($3,621.67) fine due to France employment rules.

Small businesses can only work up to six days during the week, according to local labor laws. Eligible owners can claim exemption, but Vaivre's bakery lost those privileges last year. 

However, the store, located in the Aube area of north-central France, reportedly refused to pay the penalty, ( Le Parisien  reported Tuesday.

Residents scoffed at the fine, including Christian Branle, the mayor of Lusigny-sur-Barse, a town 120 miles south-east of Paris. A petition started in favor of Vaivre garnered over 500 signatures as of this month. The bakery decided to fight the ticket, according to ( The Local . 

"These kind of laws are killing our businesses," Branle said. "You have to show some common sense if you're a small rural community in an area where there is not a lot of competition. Let people work if visitors expect the service."

"In a tourist area, it seems essential that we can have businesses open every day during the summer. There is nothing worse than closed shops when there are tourists," he added.

A source at the Aube regional council told the paper that officials developed the law to prevent businesses from exploiting workers.

"In this case, some may consider the fine is for working too hard, but in fact it's all about looking after the business," the source said, adding that the rule mostly benefits small businesses where employees often work more hours.

France traditionally upholds a 35-hour work week, also allowing workers to take long lunch breaks. In 1995, the government passed legislation permitting bakers to take a month-long vacation each year.

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Publication:International Business Times - US ed.
Geographic Code:4EUFR
Date:Mar 14, 2018
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