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Spokane auditor preparing to issue same sex marriage licenses

By Jeff Humphrey, KXLY4 Reporter , jeffhu@kxly.com
Published On: Nov 30 2012 08:16:15 PM CST
Updated On: Nov 30 2012 08:55:18 PM CST
Same-sex marriage

Erin Siegal/Reuters

SPOKANE, Wash. -

Next week a new state law takes effect that allows same sex marriages in Washington state and down at the Spokane County Courthouse the auditor is anticipating long lines for marriage licenses.

The Broadway side entrance of the courthouse is where Spokane auditor Vicky Dalton thinks a lot of same sex couples will be lining up next Thursday morning. Guards will let them warm themselves inside this lobby until they can start making their way through security.

"On November 6th the public said we believe that this is appropriate that same gender couples can marry. My job is to implement that law," Dalton said.

Dalton is expecting long lines at the auditor's office next week, so normally you'd find one clerk working the marriage license window. Next Thursday morning there will be three.

"Well we expect a very good crowd here Thursday morning to be here to apply for marriage licenses and we also expect on Friday that we'll have people arriving from other states," Dalton said.

The auditor also had to get a new marriage license application; up until now the form had a place for the bride and groom's names. Now the application is gender neutral.

"People will be able to chose bride, groom or spouse as well as indicate the gender, male or female, so those are the new fields on the form," Dalton explained.

Dalton has received phone calls from interested, same sex couple from as far away as Texas and wants to make sure anyone who wants to pay the $58 for a marriage license is treated the same way.

"This is a very important event in people's lives, and we understand that and we are very honored to be part of that process for every couple that qualifies under the law," she said.

Authorities plan to provide extra security at the courthouse next Thursday just in case.

"We don't expect a protest, we have not heard of anything. But certainly we're going to be a little more aware of what's going on, so security will be just a little different," Deputy Steve Martone with the Spokane Co. Sheriff's Office said.

"There's going to be so many excited people waiting in line. This is going to be a very happy time," Dalton said.

If you plan on being in that line next Thursday please remember the auditor's office only takes checks or cash and you need photo identification.

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