WA state, local workers prepare for gay marriage law - KPTV - FOX 12

WA state, local workers prepare for gay marriage law

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VANCOUVER, WA (KPTV) -

State workers in Washington are changing the words on marriage and divorce certificates after voters approved gay marriages.

The Department of Health just doesn't know exactly what those words will be yet.

Current forms use gender-specific terms like bride, groom, husband and wife. State health workers are proposing to use gender-neutral terms from now on and are seeking the public's input on the changes.

The proposal includes identifying the gender of couples on the forms, so the public will have information about the number of same-sex marriages in Washington.

A public hearing is set for 8 a.m. Wednesday at 310 Israel Road S.E., Rooms 152-153 in Tumwater, WA.

Written comments will also be accepted up until 5 p.m. Wednesday. You can submit them online at Washington's policy review website.

The new law is set to begin in Washington Dec. 6. In Clark County, the auditor's office will be open for extended hours that day for the possibility of a rush of same-sex couples looking to get marriage licenses.

The Clark County office will be open until 7 p.m. Dec. 6 and Dec. 7, instead of closing at the usual time of 5 p.m. The auditor's office will also be open Saturday, Dec. 8, from 9 a.m. to noon.

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