NY To Honor California, Other Gay Marriages

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New York Governor David Paterson’s sticking to his good, gay word.

The politico, who took over after Eliot Spitzer’s hooker scandal, vowed earlier this year to bring same-sex nuptials to the Empire State. While couples can’t yet marry within state lines, Paterson and his team this month declared that New York must accommodate gay marriages performed elsewhere, like California, which will likely start issuing same-sex marriage licenses June 17th.

In a directive issued on May 14, the governor’s legal counsel, David Nocenti, instructed the agencies that gay couples married elsewhere “should be afforded the same recognition as any other legally performed union.”

The revisions are most likely to involve as many as 1,300 statutes and regulations in New York governing everything from joint filing of income tax returns to transferring fishing licenses between spouses.

Legal experts said Mr. Paterson’s decision would make New York the only state that did not itself allow gay marriage but fully recognized same-sex unions entered into elsewhere.


Paterson’s move comes after a New York court ruled in February that the state must honor all marriages performed elsewhere, even if they’re of the lavender variety.

New York agencies now have until June 30th to review policies and ensure they don’t conflict with same-sex nuptials. The ruling will not, however, apply to certain civil sectors, like family courts that would decide custody. Nor, it seems, will gays be protected from testifying against one another. Those small details, some say, prove that the state still needs to pass its own marriage laws, which would definitely cut down on travel time!