Gay Nebraska couples tie the knot in Iowa

Three same-sex couples from Nebraska got marriage licenses this morning at the Pottawattamie County, Iowa, Recorder’s Office in Council Bluffs.

An Iowa Supreme Court ruling earlier this month legalized gay marriage in Iowa and today is the first day marriage licenses are being issued to same-sex couples.

George Farrage — the top deputy in the Pottawattamie County Recorder’s Office — says since the county sits on Iowa’s western border, there is interest from gay couples in states to the west.

“We’ve had inquiries from other states such as Missouri and Kansas and Colorado and places of that nature,” Farrage says. “But we haven’t seen anybody…say they are coming, but they have been inquiring about it.”

County recorders are the officials who issue marriage licenses in Iowa. Most gay couples from Nebraska and other states can’t simply go to Iowa and get married today.

“They can apply for a three-day waiver, which is an extra $5 and then they have to find a district court judge,” the deputy explains. “(The judge) would have to allow them to have that three-day waiver and then he’d have to sign that to o.k. it, bring that back down to us and then (the gay couple) can get married that same day.”

Eleven couples — including the three from Nebraska — applied for marriage licenses this morning in Council Bluffs at the Pottawattamie County Courthouse.