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Kane County Advised To Charge Same For Civil Unions, Marriages

CHICAGO (WBBM/CBS) -- While civil unions will not be treated equally as marriage when they become legal in Illinois, there is one area where they may be on par.

As WBBM Newsradio 780's Nancy Harty reports, the Kane County clerk's office has decided the cost of a civil union license in Kane County should be the same amount as a marriage license, according to the Aurora Beacon-News.

Kane County Clerk Jack Cunningham proposed charging the same fee for civil unions and marriages at a hearing before the County Board Public Service Committee, which approved the proposal, the Beacon-News reported.

The full County Board now must vote on the proposal, which would set a fee of $27 for a civil union license – which allows the union to take place – and $11 for a civil union certificate – which is proof that the union took place, the Beacon-News reported.

A bill allowing for civil unions was signed into law by Gov. Quinn on Jan. 31, after being approved by both houses of the Illinois General Assembly in December.

Attempts have been mounted to attach new restrictions to the bill, but so far, they have failed. Earlier this month, an Illinois Senate committee rejected a bill that would have allowed faith-based groups to turn away gay or lesbian couples joined in a civil union who wanted to adopt or become foster parents.

In February, two state senators proposed a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage in Illinois, but it was sent to a committee with no members or scheduled meetings, a move which experts say is a common tactic to dispense with a piece of legislation.


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