Lawmakers Join Together To Propose Bill To End So-Called "Marriage Penalty" For Married Taxpayers

Aug 31, 2017

Ohio tax law still has a “marriage penalty” – when married couples file jointly and pay more in state income taxes than they paid separately when they were single. And the issue has resulted in a union of an unlikely pair of sponsors.

“Our tax code encourages people to shack up rather than be married and that’s just plain wrong," said conservative Rep. John Becker (R-Cincinnati). He's vowing to giving married couples the option of filing state income taxes separately.

He and Rep. David Leland (D-Columbus) have joined together to sponsor the bill. Leland admitted they don’t agree on much, but on this issue they do: “This is a tax cut that working families, 2.5 million working families in the state of Ohio would benefit from.”

If it passes, the state could lose $500 million a year. But the representatives say they hope to find a loophole, credit or exemption that could be eliminated to pay for this proposal.