The state of Maryland could be enjoying nearly $53 million a year in economic activity from same-sex marriages, according to a recent analysis by NerdWallet, a San Francisco-based financial advice website.
The analysis looked at the economic impact of same-sex marriages across the country, and determined the national windfall to be more than $2.5 billion.
It based its calculations on just a few factors: overall population; the percentage of the population that identifies as lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender; the marriage rate by state; the estimated number of same-sex marriages per state; and the average cost of a wedding per state.
It pulled that information from Gallup polls, U.S. Census Bureau data, as well as The Wedding Report. It assumed the rate of same-sex marriage is the same as the rate for all couples.
In Maryland, NerdWallet found 3.3 percent of the state's 5,928,814 people identified as LGBT, and were having an estimated 1,507 weddings a year at a cost of $34,995 -- for a total added value to the state's economy of nearly $53 million.
Nationally, it found California, the country's most populous state, stood to gain the most, at about $414 million.
In the long-term, NerdWallet predicts even more money will be spent on same-sex marriages across the country as fewer couples get married quickly at courthouses and instead spend more time and money on larger ceremonies.
Believe it or not, it's been almost two years since same-sex marriages began in Maryland for the first time early on the morning of Jan. 1, 2013, including some at City Hall in Baltimore. You can take a look back at our coverage of that event here.
Elsewhere in LGBT-related news:
- The D.C. City Council has banned therapies that would seek to change the sexual orientation of minors, according to the Washington Blade. That issue has been batted around the General Assembly here in Maryland as well. We'll be watching to see if it comes up again.
- The Associated Press had a story this week on LGBT baby boomers and the hurdles they face in retirement, which you can read here.
- Meet Major League Baseball umpire Dale Scott, another face in the expanding circle of openly gay people in major league sports.