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Is A&M's Pay Raise a Good or Bad Thing?

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Casey Crawford has been working as a groundskeeper for Texas A&M just under a year. He says he's happy with the additional money he will soon be seeing on his paycheck.

"For the amount of work we do, we should be getting a raise," says Crawford.

Crawford is among the more than 300 minimum wage employees that will be getting a raise come September 1.

A&M Human Resources Officer, Jill Pollock says the university realized they weren't up to par with other universities of similar size and needed to pay their lowest paid workers, more.

"Being an economic leader particularly for entry level workers is important to us and we do want to be employer of choice. These are good positions with excellent benefits and work 40 hours a week; if that makes others want to compete a little more rigorously with us that's a good thing," says Pollock.

But what about those who can't compete with the university's pay increase.

Mitch Morehead serves on the board of the Research Valley Partnership. He says this raise will not have a negative impact on bringing in new businesses.

But it could force local businesses to keep up with Brazos Valley's biggest employer.

"They may have to raise their pay wages. I think we all in this community with low unemployment work hard at employee retention. I think you have to do what you have to do to be able to retain good employees," says Morehead.

A&M president Robert Gates hopes the pay raise will make A&M the "employer of choice" for the Brazos Valley. While it may ultimately be good for the economy, the truth is, some local businesses may be financially hard pressed to keep up.