Baltimore mayoral aide Jim Scales and
his partner Bill Taskers will be the first couple to marry in
Baltimore as Maryland's gay marriage law takes effect on January 1.
The men have been together 35 years.
While Baltimore's courthouse will
remain closed for New Year's Day, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake is
opening City Hall at 12:30AM to host the weddings of seven couples.
Maryland 's law is the third and last
to take effect after winning voter approval in November. Couples
began marrying in Washington state on December 9 and in Maine
Clerks began issuing marriage licenses
to gay and lesbian couples after Governor Martin O'Malley certified
election results nearly three weeks ago, but none become effective
until the new year.
“New Years Day will have a new
meaning for the hundreds – if not thousands – of couples who will
finally have the right to marry the person they love,” Mayor
Rawlings-Blake told WBAL.
“It is a remarkable achievement for
Maryland. And we are excited to open City Hall to host some of the
first wedding ceremonies in our great state. Newly married couples
will stand before their friends to profess their love and commitment
to each other. This is what we worked for. And I am looking forward
to take part in this historic and jubilant day.”