State budget guy Tom Hanson to take private sector job

Tom Hanson, the Minnesota Management and Budget commissioner who’s been the state’s point man on budget issues since 2006, is leaving state government.

He had to endure some depressing announcements on deficits and tax collections during the recession, and now — in the wake of a massive change over at the state Capitol as Gov. Tim Pawlenty leaves office after eight years and a new Republican majority takes over in the Legislature — Hanson will join the legislative and regulatory practice of the Minneapolis law firm of Winthrop & Weinstine.

Before becoming commissioner, Hanson had been Pawlenty’s deputy chief of staff and director of legislative and cabinet affairs. Pawlenty today called Hanson “a trusted adviser and friend with the talent to manage both policy and people to success.”

The governor said: “Tom has been instrumental in leading our efforts to develop, enact and implement balanced budgets during some of the most difficult economic times in our state’s history.”

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