Economic Impact Reports

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    Estimating the Economic Boost of Marriage for Same-Sex Couples in Oregon

    By Erin G. Fitzgerald, Christy Mallory, M.V. Lee Badgett
    April 2014

    Extending marriage to same-sex couples in Oregon would generate nearly $50 million in spending to the state economy. According to 2010 U.S. Census, the most recent data available, 11,773 same-sex couples live in Oregon. Of those couples, the report estimates that 50 percent (5,887 couples) would choose to marry in the first three years, a pattern that has been observed in Massachusetts and elsewhere. Nearly 4,000 marriages would occur in the first year alone, and bring over $30 million in revenue to the state of Oregon that year.

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    Estimating the Economic Boost of Marriage for Same-Sex Couples in Colorado

    By Lee Badgett, Christy Mallory
    April 2014

    Extending marriage to same-sex couples in Colorado would generate $50 million in spending to the state and local economy. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, 12,424 same-sex couples live in Colorado. Of those couples, the Institute estimates that 50% (6,212 couples) would choose to marry in the first three years, a pattern that has been observed in Massachusetts and elsewhere. Of the couples that will marry, 64% of those marriages will occur during the first year, 21% in the second year and 15% in the third years.

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  • The Fiscal Impact of Extending Marriage to Same-Sex Couples in New Mexico

    By Erin Fitzgerald and Steven K. Homer
    December 2013

    Extending marriage rights to same-sex couples in New Mexico would bring an estimated $20.4 million to the state economy over the first three years. According to the most recent U.S. Census, there are currently 5,825 same-sex couples living in New Mexico. Of those couples, 50 percent or an estimated 2,913 marriage licenses would be issued within the first three years of the passage of marriage equality.

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  • Estimating the Economic Boost of Marriage Equality in Delaware

    By Angeliki Kastanis and M.V. Lee Badgett
    May 2013

    Extending marriage rights to same-sex couples in Delaware would bring an estimated $7 million to the state and local economy. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, 2,646 same-sex couples live in Delaware. Of those couples, 50 percent, or approximately 767 marriage licenses, would be issued within the first three years after the passage of marriage equality, a pattern that has been observed in Massachusetts and elsewhere. The report also takes into account the Delaware couples that may have married in other states.

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  • Estimating the Economic Boost of Marriage Equality in Rhode Island

    By Angeliki Kastanis, M.V. Lee Badgett
    May 2013

    Extending marriage rights to same-sex couples in Rhode Island would bring an estimated $7 million to the state and local economy, including $5.5 million in additional wedding spending and $1.5 million in tourism expenditures made by out-of-town guests. Based on Rhode Island’s rates of 7 percent sales tax and 6 percent hotel and lodging tax, $530,000 in tax revenue will be generated for the state in the first three years same-sex couples may marry. The boost in travel spending will generate approximately 26 jobs in the state.

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  • Estimating the Economic Boost of Marriage Equality in Minnesota

    By Angeliki Kastanis, M.V. Lee Badgett
    April 2013

    Extending marriage rights to same-sex couples in Minnesota would bring an estimated $42 million to the state and local economy. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, 10,207 same-sex couples live in Minnesota. Total state and local tax revenue would rise by $3 million, including an estimated $128,000 in local taxes. As seen in Iowa, same-sex couples from neighboring states that do not allow same-sex couples to marry may travel to Minnesota and generate additional spending on wedding and tourism-related goods and services.

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  • Estimating the Economic Boost of Marriage Equality in Illinois

    By Angeliki Kastanis, M.V. Lee Badgett
    March 2013

    Extending marriage to same-sex couples in Illinois would generate up to $103 million in spending to the state and local economy. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, 23,049 same-sex couples live in Illinois. Of those couples, the report estimates that 50% (11,525 couples) would choose to marry in the first three years, a pattern that has been observed in Massachusetts and elsewhere. Of the couples that will marry, 64% of those marriages will occur during the first year, 21% in the second year and 15% in the third year.

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  • The Economic Impact of Extending Marriage to Same-Sex Couples in Australia

    By M.V. Lee Badgett, Jennifer Smith
    February 2012

    Extending marriage to Australian same-sex couples would boost the country’s economy by $161 million over three years. This estimate is based on a projection that 54 percent (or 17,820) of Australia’s approximately 33,000 same-sex couples would marry.

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  • The Economic Impact of Extending Marriage to Same-Sex Couples in Washington State

    By Angeliki Kastanis, M.V. Lee Badgett, Jody L. Herman
    January 2012

    Total spending by resident same-sex couples and their guests will add an estimated $88 million boost to the state and local economy over the course of three years. This economic boost is likely to add $8 million in tax revenue to state and local coffers.

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  • Estimating the Economic Boost of Marriage Equality in Iowa: Sales Tax

    By Angeliki Kastanis, M.V. Lee Badgett, Jody L. Herman
    December 2011

    Total spending on wedding arrangements and tourism by same-sex couples and their guests added an estimated $12 to $13 million boost to the state and local economy of Iowa. Economic boost is likely to have added $850,000 to $930,000 in tax revenue to state and local coffers.

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  • Spending on Weddings of Same-Sex Couples in the United States

    By Craig J. Konnoth, M.V. Lee Badgett, Brad Sears
    July 2011

    The extension of marriage rights to same-sex couples in various jurisdictions will generate economic gains for the businesses in those jurisdictions due to increased spending on weddings. This memorandum estimates the total spending by resident and out-of-state couples on their weddings in states that recognize marriage equality for same-sex couples, in the first year after equal marriage rights were introduced.

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  • The Impact of Civil Unions on Hawai`i’s Economy and Government

    By Sumner La Croix, Kimberly Burnett
    February 2011

    This report provides quantitative and qualitative measures of the impact of same-sex civil unions on the Hawai`i economy, Hawai`i businesses, and the State of Hawai`i’s budget. Research concludes that the legalization of civil unions in Hawai`i will have only a very minimal impact on any aspect of Hawai`i’s economy and state government operations.

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  • The Economic Value of Marriage for Same-Sex Couples

    By M.V. Lee Badgett
    October 2010

    In the five states and the District of Columbia that allow same-sex couples to marry, tens of thousands same-sex couples have taken advantage of the opportunity. The demand for marriage shows same-sex couples find marriage to be a valuable status, and studies of same-sex couples suggest they are quite similar to different-sex couples in both the economic and social needs that lead them to marry.

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  • Federal Estate Tax Disadvantages for Same-Sex Couples

    By Michael D. Steinberger
    November 2009

    Using data from several government data sources, this report estimates the dollar value of the estate tax disadvantage faced by same-sex couples. In 2009, the differential treatment of same-sex and married couples in the estate tax code will affect an estimated 73 same-sex couples, costing them each, on average, more than $3.3 million.

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  • The Impact of Inequalities for Same-Sex Partners in Employer-Sponsored Retirement Plans

    By Naomi G. Goldberg
    October 2009

    This report analyzes the impact of unequal treatment of same-sex partners in the context of retirement plans and estimates the cost for employers of adopting a policy of equal treatment. We find that same-sex couples face inequalities when it comes to their ability to accumulate wealth, plan for their futures, and pass on wealth.

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  • Testimony on the Domestic Partnership Benefits and Obligations Act of 2009

    By M.V. Lee Badgett
    July 8, 2009

    Williams Institute Research Director Lee Badgett’s written testimony delivered to the Congressional Subcommittee on Federal Workforce, Postal Service, and the District of Columbia on HR 2517: Domestic Partnership Benefits and Obligation Act of 2009. If passed, the legislation would extend federal employee benefits to domestic partners of federal workers.

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  • Marriage Equality and the Creative Class

    By Gary J. Gates
    May 2009

    Data from the American Community Survey suggest that marriage equality has a small but positive impact on the number of individuals in same-sex couples who are attracted to a state.

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  • Tax Implications for Same-Sex Couples

    By Naomi G. Goldberg, M.V. Lee Badgett
    April 2009

    This fact sheet outlines some of the ways in which same-sex couples are treated inequality by the federal government. Topics discussed include: taxation of health insurance benefits, lack of protection from estate taxes, no options in filing income taxes, the lack of social security survivor or spousal benefits, and the lack of visibility in the census.

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  • The Fiscal Impact of Extending Federal Benefits to Same-Sex Domestic Partners

    By Naomi G. Goldberg, Christopher Ramos, M.V. Lee Badgett
    September 2008

    This report finds that offering health and other benefits to the same-sex partners of federal employees would add $41 million to the federal budget in the first year of coverage. Over ten years the report predicts the budgetary cost will be $675 million, a small percentage of the federal budget.

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  • Unequal Taxes on Equal Benefits: The Taxation of Domestic Partner Benefits

    By M.V. Lee Badgett
    December 2007

    Public policy encourages employers to provide health insurance by exempting that form of compensation from taxation. As a result, married workers who get family health insurance benefits get a double benefit—they get health insurance coverage for their spouses and children and are not taxed on the value of that coverage. Employers typically do not provide health insurance coverage for domestic partners of their workers; and even when partners are covered, the partner’s coverage is taxed as income to the employee. This report estimates the financial impact of this extra tax on employees and employers.

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