April 27, 2005
Jon Stewart's Gaywatch
March 16, 2005
Study: Civil Unions Help Conn Budget
"A new study shows that the state budget would benefit from such a move." More:
The study, released by two national think tanks on Tuesday, estimates that the state would save at least $3 million per year and as much as $13 million if same-sex couples could marry. And providing civil unions would result in more than $2 million per year in savings, it found.
The study, conducted by the Institute for Gay and Lesbian Strategic Studies and the Williams Project of University of California Law School, found several sources of savings for the state budget. The biggest savings would come from decreasing the number of individuals needing and being eligible for means-tested state benefit programs, thereby saving the state money. Marriage and civil unions mean a spouse's income is included when determining eligibility for state benefit programs.
The state will also see a boost to its wedding and tourist businesses that could bring in almost $2 million per year in sales tax revenues. "We've seen a lot of spending by same-sex couples on weddings in Massachusetts, and Connecticut couples are also likely to spend thousands of dollars if they could marry," notes economist and study coauthor M.V. Lee Badgett. "Out-of-state couples would also travel to Connecticut to marry, bringing in millions of dollars to the state's businesses and millions in sales tax revenues to the state."
March 02, 2005
Topeka "Votes for Gay Rights"
An effort to repeal a city ordinance that protects gays from discrimination failed on Tuesday night, and a lesbian city councilwoman turned back a primary challenge by the granddaughter of the minister who orchestrated the repeal campaign.BoldPrint: "Poor Fred Phelps. Looks like "God Hates You," sir."
The minister, the Rev. Fred Phelps Sr., who is known for picketing the funerals of AIDS victims, wanted to remove from the books a city ordinance that prohibits discrimination against gays in municipal hiring. The repeal, which was denied on a vote of 14,285 to 12,795, would have barred Topeka from reinstating such protections for 10 years.
A granddaughter of Mr. Phelps, Jael Phelps, was among three candidates who challenged the lesbian councilwoman, Tiffany Muller, in a nonpartisan primary.
Ms. Muller, 26, pushed for the antidiscrimination ordinance after she was appointed to fill a vacancy on the council last year.
With her second-place finish on Tuesday night, getting 1,329 votes, Ms. Muller assured herself a spot on the April general election ballot. Richard Harmon, a lawyer, finished first, with 1,935 votes, and Ms. Phelps, a 20-year-old nursing student, received just 202 votes.