Mt. Vernon Register-News

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June 4, 2014

No same sex licenses issued

MT. VERNON — No same sex marriage licenses have been issued in Jefferson County.

County clerks across the state were prepared to begin issuing the licenses on Monday since Sunday was the legal start of gay marriage in Illinois.

Jefferson County Clerk Connie Simmons said Tuesday morning she has issued no same sex marriage licenses nor have any couples asked for a conversion from a civil union to marriage.

Civil unions began in the state of Illinois in June 2011. More than a dozen counties started issuing the same sex marriage licenses earlier this year after a federal court ruling, but most counties opted to wait until the law officially took effect June 1.

Simmons delayed the issuance of the licenses due to not having the software program, she reported earlier this year. Simmons now has the software program in place, she indicated Tuesday morning.

For couples seeking a conversion from a civil union to a marriage license, they must bring a birth certificate and photo identification, plus a copy of their civil union, Simmons said.

Conversions may be made for just one year, until June 1, 2015, although Simmons said she believes the conversion period will be extended by lawmakers.

There is a $30 charge for same sex couple marriage licenses, plus a $10 fee if couples are married by a judge. There is no fee for a conversion, the clerk said.

She added it’s up to the couples to make an appointment with a judge if they want to be married at the courthouse.

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