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Who's Paying?

Should you choose to pay your employees a "living wage" today? Tomorrow, the decision may not be yours to make.

By Chris Penttila

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Business is good for Jim Amaral. His bakery, Borealis Breads, has grown beyond its original Wells, Maine, store to include three other locations, annual sales are averaging $3 million, and the company's baked goods have been featured on CNN.

But more is rising at Borealis than bread. Three years ago, Amaral, 44, decided to start paying his 60 employees a "living wage" that averages almost $3 more than the federal minimum, plus benefits. "I just kept bumping people up until they were at $8 an hour," he says.

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