Pawlenty names point person on federal stimulusby Tom Scheck, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — Gov. Pawlenty has appointed the director of Minnesota Management and Budget to oversee Minnesota's portion of the federal stimulus package.
Pawlenty said in a news release that Tom Hanson is best suited to lead the efforts, since he works closely with state agencies and the federal government as the state's top finance official.
The expected economic stimulus package hasn't been finalized yet, but the U.S. House of Representatives passed its version of the bill which costs more than $800 billion.
On his weekly radio show, Pawlenty said he's worried about the amount of federal debt the package will run up, but said he'll fight for the state's portion.
"Minnesota should fight for its share of the money because we are net payers into the federal government," said Pawlenty. "For every dollar that we send in, we only get back about 70-75 cents from the federal government. So I don't think we need to be bashful about asking for our share."
DFL House Majority Leader Tony Sertich criticized Pawlenty's choice of Hanson. He said Hanson already has his hands full with managing the state's budget, and the federal money should be handled by someone else.