A federal judge on December 19 ordered Idaho to pay more than $400,000 in legal fees stemming from the case that toppled the state's ban on gay marriage.

Governor Butch Otter, a Republican, called the original amount the six lawyers requested excessive and had asked U.S. Magistrate Judge Candy Dale to cut the figure in half.

Instead, she lowered the bill by about 10 percent, saying that the fees were mostly reasonable.

“Simply put, the case was neither easy nor ordinary,” Dale wrote. “It is therefore not surprising that plaintiffs employed a team of experienced attorneys to divvy up the many legal tasks.”

“Whatever the case lacked in procedural complications or disputed issues of material fact, it surely made up in legal complexity. After all, the case involved constitutional issues of first impression not only in Idaho, but in all district courts in the Ninth Circuit.”

Gay couples started marrying in Idaho on October 15. Otter has appealed the ruling.

(Brief provided by Equality Case Files.)