Citing an appeals court order handed down Wednesday, Boulder County, Colorado began issuing marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples.

Two couples tied the knot before the close of business.

Boulder County Clerk and Recorder Hillary Hall said she acted after the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver upheld a lower court's ruling striking down Utah's constitutional amendment limiting marriage to heterosexual couples. She said she would resume issuing licenses at one office on Thursday and two additional offices on Friday.

“Because 10th Circuit decisions are binding in the State of Colorado, the precedent established by Kitchen v. Herbert is applicable to the same-sex marriage ban contained in the Colorado Constitution,” the county said in a statement. “Clerk Hall intends to uphold the fundamental right to marriage now recognized by the 10th Circuit by issuing marriage licenses to any person who wishes to marry.”

“Couples across Colorado have been waiting a long time to have their right to marry the person they love recognized,” Hall said. “I want to act immediately to let them carry out that wish.”

Colorado Attorney General John Suthers said in a statement, “Any marriage licenses issued to same-sex couples in Colorado before a final court resolution of the the issue are invalid.”

“Today's decision by the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals was stayed by the court and has not gone into effect in Utah, let alone in Colorado,” he added.

Hall said the appeals court's stay only applied to Utah.