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Shaking things up

John Seelmeyer

Here’s one for the books: Wal-Mart worries some Reno-area employers who think the retail behemoth pays too well.

Specifically, they say, the $14.50 an hour that Wal-Mart is offering workers to start at its grocery distribution center east of Sparks threatens to draw off workers from other warehouses in the area.

Wal-Mart’s pay, which can range as high as $18.85 an hour once shift and weekend differ entials are factored in, hasn’t escaped the notice of northern Nevada workers.

The company already has gathered applications from 5,000 workers for the 600 positions at the distribution center near Patrick, about 12 miles east of Sparks.

“There has been considerable interest,” says Keith Morris, a spokesman For Wal-Mart’s distribution operations.

The 800,000-square-foot center is sched uled to begin operation in August, and Morris says Wal-Mart will start training workers as loaders, freight handlers, forklift drivers and the like this summer.

The company’s hiring, however, already rattles other employers who worry that they’ll lose workers to Wal-Mart.