UH: $217M in tourism if gay marriage in Hawaii

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Associated Press

Posted on July 25, 2013 at 3:02 PM

Updated Thursday, Jul 25 at 3:02 PM

HONOLULU (AP) — A new economic analysis from the University of Hawaii says legalizing gay marriage in the state would boost tourism by $217 million over the next three years.

The study from the university's Economic Research Organization says that would boost state and local general excise tax revenues by more than $10 million from 2014 through 2016.

The study's author, Prof. Sumner LaCroix, says two recent U.S. Supreme Court decisions affecting gay marriage give a clearer picture for Hawaii tourism.

LaCroix says most of the added visitor spending would come from couples from other U.S. states that have legalized gay marriage. He estimates $166 million would be spent on marriage ceremonies and honeymoons.

LaCroix says nearly 2,000 same-sex couples living in Hawaii could be married by the end of 2016.

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