HATTIESBURG, Miss. (AP) — Members of the Hattiesburg Police Department will see a pay raise this spring.

The Hattiesburg City Council unanimously approved the pay scale alignment Tuesday.

WDAM-TV reports the scale lists a starting salary per position and increases throughout the tenure. Mayor Toby Barker says the new scale was important after the administration identified a lack of consistency among how pay raises or professional development was done. He says it also will be a valuable tool for retention and recruitment.

The approved pay scale also increases an individual's salary based on college education. For example, a patrol officer with a base salary of $35,000 per year could receive $38,000 with a master's degree.

Barker says he will sign a resolution before the increase goes into effect April 1st.

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Information from: WDAM-TV, http://www.wdam.com