Bisbee, Arizona on Tuesday approved a
scaled-back civil unions bill for gay and lesbian couples.
According to the AP, the Bisbee City
Council approved the ordinance with a 5-2 vote.
“It feels great,” said Councilman
Gene Conners, the measure's champion on the council.
Council members approved a more robust
civil unions bill in April. But after Arizona Attorney General Tom
Horne threatened to go to court to block its start, officials decided
to rewrite the measure. Horne said some provisions of the measure
were in conflict with state law. In particular, Arizona's 2008
voter-approved constitutional amendment defining marriage as a
The original version of the ordinance
granted couples in a civil union the same responsibilities and
benefits as married couples. That line has since been omitted. The
new ordinance states that couples could file contractual statements
in matters such as inheritances, property ownership and children.
Horne has said that he believes the new
measure now complies with state law.
Gay and lesbian residents of the former
mining community-turned-artist's haven, which is made up of about
5,600 people, will be able to enter a civil union starting in 30
Several additional Arizona cities,
including Tempe and Tucson, are considering similar measures.