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Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Ind. Gov't. - Some clerks in the dark as to how to proceed, others have issued dozens of licenses to same-sex couples today

From the Marion County Clerk's office:

At approximately 12:30PM the Marion County Clerk’s Office began issuing same-sex marriage licenses. As of this writing, the office has processed approximately 50 applications and has conducted 31 civil ceremonies. At least a hundred couples are still in line waiting to apply for a license. The Clerk’s Office will remain open until 8PM and will process marriage license applications for anyone in line by that time. Prospective applicants arriving after 8PM will be asked to return the following morning when the office opens at 8AM.
But from southwest Indiana, Nate Smith of the Washington Times-Herald reports (h/t Maureen Hayden):
Daviess County denied a same-sex couple a marriage license following a federal judge's order striking down the Indiana same-sex marriage ban and confusion at the state level.

Daviess County Clerk Sherri Healy said Wednesday a same-sex couple called the office inquiring about obtaining a license. She had to deny the request because nothing had come from the state allowing her issue one.

"I said 'Until I was authorized to issue them, I would not be doing it,'" Healy said.

U.S. District Judge Richard Young ordered Wednesday Indiana's same-sex marriage ban was unconstitutional, allowing many same-sex couples to obtain licenses from across the state. Clerks in Marion, Monroe, Allen, Lake and other counties started issuing licenses immediately because there was no stay in the Young's order, allowing licenses to be issued.

Daviess County was not the only county denying licenses to same-sex couples, as counties across southwestern Indiana would not issue the licenses due to a lack of an order from the state attorney general's office to do so. There is also a question if the licenses would be valid before the stay was issued.

According to tweets from Evansville Courier and Press Reporter Zach Evans, a Knox County couple tried to obtain a marriage license but was denied. The clerk's office reversed its decision later Wednesday and said they would issue licenses.

Dubois County also had denied couples the licenses and then reversed course. Clerks in Martin and Pike counties said Wednesday afternoon they had not received any calls for marriage licenses.

Other larger counties in Indiana, including Tippecanoe and Elkhart counties, also did not issue licenses while waiting on guidance from the state. Healy expressed frustration with the state in its lack of communication with county clerks following Judge Young's ruling. Other than emails with fellow clerks, there has been nothing from the state, she said.

"We are supposed to have something official before the end of business (Wednesday)," Healy said.

ILB: See earlier posts here and here.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on June 25, 2014 04:42 PM
Posted to Indiana Government