Gay couples convince clerk to issue licenses
Licenses available in some counties
MADISON, Wis. — County clerks in Janesville and Appleton are accepting applications for marriage licenses from same-sex couples.
Outagamie County Clerk Lori O’Bright initially told couples Monday morning that she would wait for direction from the state before issuing licenses to gay couples. She changed her mind after nearly 100 people refused to leave her office without completing forms.
Kathy Flores was one of those waiting to apply for a license. She says dozens of people gathered at O’Bright’s office responded that they weren’t leaving until licenses were issued.
A county attorney then told O’Bright to begin accepting applications. But, unlike some other county clerks, O’Bright is not waiving Wisconsin’s five-day waiting period unless there are extenuating circumstances.
Brown County Clerk Sandy Juno says she hoped for advice from the Wisconsin Vital Records Office, which keeps marriage records. But she says after she couldn’t reach anyone at the office she decided to issue licenses to about 10 couples.
A federal judge declared Wisconsin’s ban on gay marriage unconstitutional Friday but did not order counties to start issuing licenses.
Clerks Lafayette county are waiting to issue licenses after a court hearing on the issue Monday afternoon.