Supporters of legalizing gay marriage
in Ohio say it could yield $165 million for the state.
Freedom to Marry Ohio on Thursday
released a report by Bill Lafayette of Regionomics LLC of Columbus
titled Economic Impacts of Legalizing Marriage of Same-Gender
Couples in Ohio.
According to Lafayette's findings,
approximately half of Ohio's 19,700 gay couples would marry if the
state repealed its 2004 Constitutional ban on gay marriage and
legalized the institution resulting in a $165 million economic impact
over three years. The estimate includes money spent on weddings and
wages paid to workers in the wedding industry.
“We can stop exporting weddings and
watching dollars leave Ohio,” said Mary Jo Kilroy, executive
director of Freedom to Marry Ohio. “There has been a seismic shift
in public opinion on accepting the freedom to marry. This is a great
opportunity for Ohio to be a leader and to improve our economy as
Freedom to Marry Ohio in May began
collecting signatures to put the state's gay marriage ban up for a
vote next year.
Franklin County, which includes
Columbus, has the most to gain with an estimated $20 million
financial impact. Marriage equality could mean nearly $11 million
for Cuyahoga County, which includes Cleveland.
report available online.