A new study revealed this week that if gay marriage was legalized in Texas, it would generate at minimum $14.8 million in sales tax revenue to state and local governments and as much as $181.6 million, Gay Star News reports.

According to the independent think tank the Williams Institute's report, the U.S. Census says there are 46,401 same-sex couples living in Texas. The institute came to their $14.8 million calculations based on only half of those couples legally tying the knot in the next three years if gay marriage is legalized in the Lone Star State.

The organization believes more than 14,800 same-sex marriages would be performed in the first year gay marriage becomes legal and would generate $116 million in spending in the state that year. The group calculated that level of spending would generate up to 1,570 fulltime and part-time jobs in Texas and earn $181.6 million of additional spending in the state in the first three years after legalizing gay marriage.

"This study confirms that all Texans benefit from marriage for same-sex couples, not just the LGBT community," Williams Institute's Distinguished Scholar MV Lee Badgett said.

The group's senior counsel Christy Mallory said the report was only the latest of a number of similar studies that show same-sex marriages makes financial sense for America.

"Study after study has demonstrated that, in addition to significant revenue, marriage for same-sex couples also creates new jobs," Mallory said.

GSN reports that the University of Texas released a poll in April and found that 48 percent of Texans back gay marriage while 47 percent oppose the issue. But the Republican Texas Gov. Rick Perry opposes marriage equality and is fighting a judge's ruling that the state's ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional.

From our media partner EDGE