Wanted: Office of Cannabis Management Director, paid for by you

If you have, among other things, “eight years of professional experience in regulatory oversight, public administration, business or law enforcement” as well as “knowledge of the cannabis and/or hemp regulatory environment,” you might be in luck. The Minnesota Office of Cannabis Management is hiring a Cannabis Management director.

The salary range for the position is $50.65 – $72.56 / hourly; $105,757 – $151,505 / annually. And the job also has other benefits, which might include:

  • Public pension plan
  • Training and professional development
  • Paid vacation and sick leave
  • 11 paid holidays each year
  • Paid parental leave
  • Low-cost medical and dental coverage
  • Prescription drug coverage
  • Vision coverage
  • Wellness programs and resources
  • Employer-paid life insurance
  • Short-term and long-term disability
  • Healthcare spending and savings accounts
  • Dependent care spending account
  • Tax-deferred compensation
  • Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
  • Tuition reimbursement

Paid for by you

Cannabis Director is just one of the thousands of jobs the state is hiring for. With new agencies created, and existing agencies expanded, the Minnesota state government is on a hiring spree, as John Phelan already noted. Not only that, but the state is giving state workers pay raises and making it easier for unions to get raises in the future by cutting out the legislature from future pay negotiations.

The dramatic expansion of the Minnesota state government should definitely concern you. As a taxpayer, you are on the hook for all current and future state government labor expenses — even if the unions demand exorbitant pay hikes.

The Office of Cannabis Management is a bit different because it is supposed to be supported by taxes on Cannabis. Economically speaking, this is a more efficient — but not exactly non-problematic — arrangement considering that it concentrates taxes on those people who are using the services of the office. But this doesn’t start until 2026.

In the meantime, lawmakers have given the Office of Cannabis Management about $80 million of the budget surplus for the new agency to get started. What’s even more likely? If cannabis taxes somehow fail to keep up with the costs of running the Office of Cannabis Management, taxpayers will find themselves forking over even more money from the general fund to the agency to keep it up and running.

Whatever your views are on cannabis legalization, expanding government is a poor use of taxpayers’ money. But it is especially a slap in the face to middle-class Minnesotans who (1) have seen their real wages go down due to inflation and (2) won’t get anything from the state government —  but will see their taxes go up — see the state go on a hiring spree for posh jobs like these using money that could have gone to taxpayers instead.