September 2, 2014

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City workers to get domestic-partner benefits in Columbus

COLUMBUS — Ohio’s largest city will offer domestic partner benefits to its employees a dozen years after a similar plan was canceled under public pressure.

The Columbus City Council on Monday approved health insurance coverage for the gay and unmarried partners of city workers.

The vote came after two people addressed the council about the benefits: a man who was in favor of them and a woman who was opposed. She said the council should, in her words, “make God smile, not make Satan smile.”

A similar meeting was packed in 1998 when council members first tried to offer domestic partner benefits. They pulled back on the plan when opponents collected enough petition signatures to put a measure on the ballot.