News (USA)

Ohio Statehouse ban on same-sex ceremonies to get review

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Overseers of Ohio’s Statehouse will review a seven-year-old policy that forbids same-sex couples from having their weddings and receptions in the state capitol building.

Ohio Statehouse in Columbus.
Ohio Statehouse in Columbus.

State Rep. Stephen Slesnick, a Canton Democrat and member of the Capitol Square Review and Advisory Board, a 12-member panel of state legislators and other appointees that sets policies for Statehouse, has asked for the review.

The little-known policy has faced growing criticism since first reported by Outlook Ohio. The public, taxpayer-funded building that calls itself “the People’s House” employs a policy that requires couples to show a valid Ohio marriage license before they can rent the building for weddings and receptions.

Since Ohio doesn’t allow same-sex couples to marry, the policy excludes them from celebrating their unions in the building or on its grounds.

“I will continue to push this issue,” said Slesnick, who also supports marriage equality in Ohio. “This is an equality issue. This is what’s right.”

Statehouse weddings and receptions – which cost $3,500 to rent the building and $8,000 for a reception — help offset the $7.7 million it costs each year to keep the building operating.

© Outlook Media. Ohio's statewide LGBT news source.
An LGBTQ Nation media partner.

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