Arkansas, Arkansas Attorney General, Arkansas Supreme Court, Conway County, emergency stay, gay marriage, Little Rock AR, Lonoke County, marriage license, Pulaski County AR, Pulaski County Circuit Court, ruling, same sex marriage, Washington County AR, White County
Little Rock, Ark. — The Arkansas Supreme Court late this afternoon refused to issue an emergency stay and dismissed the petition without prejudice on the Pulaski Circuit Court ruling that finds the refusal to issue same sex marriage licenses in the State of Arkansas unconstitutional.
Late this afternoon a spokesman for the Pulaski County Clerk’s office said they would continue to issue marriage licenses to same sex couples until they heard otherwise from the state. Tuesday the Pulaski County Clerk’s office issued 243 licenses to same sex couples and this morning they had issued 30.
In Washington County, the only other Arkansas County Clerk’s office still issuing marriage licenses to same sex couples, today said they had issued 16 today and 138 since Monday. The clerk’s office, which is in Fayetteville, said they would continue issuing the licenses until they hear from the state.
To view the state Supreme Court’s ruling today, click Arkansas ruling on stay of gay marriage order 5-14-14.
To view the Arkansas Attorney General’s request for an emergency stay, submitted Monday, click Arkansas AG Motion for Stay.
The Supreme Court then gave the plaintiffs in the case until noon Tuesday to respond to the request for an emergency stay. To view their response to the Attorney General’s request, click Arkansas Plaintiff_s_Response_to_State_Request_for_Emergency_Stay.
White, Lonoke, Washington and Conway County Clerk appellants Monday also filed a request for an emergency stay. To view the plaintiffs’ response to that, click Arkansas Plantiffs_Response_to_County_Clerks_Motion_for_Stay.
Also Tuesday the plaintiffs Tuesday filed a motion to dismiss the appeal until the Circuit Court submits a final order. To view that motion, click Arkansas Appellee_Mot_to_Dismiss. To view the Attorney General’s rely to that motion earlier today, click Arkansas AG_reply_in_Motion_to_Appeal 5-14-14.
To view Pulaski County Circuit Court Judge Christopher Piazza’s ruling, issued late Friday, click Arkansas_Same_Sex_Marriage_Ruling.
Update: The Supreme Court ruling Tuesday noted “The circuit court did not issue a ruling with regard to Ark. Code Ann. S 9-11-208(b) (Repl. 2009), ‘License not issued to persons of the same sex.’ Therefore, the circuit court’s order has no effect on Ark. Code Ann. S 9-11-208(b) and its prohibition against circuit and county clerks issuing same-sex marriage licenses.”
Lawyers for the plaintiffs early Thursday asked Judge Piazza to issue a ruling correcting the omission. To view their request, click Arkansas plaintiffs motion for clarification 5-15-14.
Calling the omission a “clerical error,” a little later Judge Piazza issued a “final order.” That order can be viewed by clicking Judge Piazza_final order 5-15-14.
Judge Piazza Thursday further denied any request for a stay. See Judge Piazza denies stay 5-15-14.
The state renewed its request to the state Supreme Court for a stay. See Arkansas renews petition for stay 5-15-14.
Pulaski and Washington County stopped issuing same-sex marriage licenses this morning. Pulaski County resumed issuing those licenses at about 1:30 p.m. Thursday and issued 10 today. Washington County was expected to resume Friday.
Conway, Lonoke, and White counties, as well as Faulkner and Saline, also were named in the original suit.
Caroll and Marion counties, not named in the suit, earlier issued same sex licenses.
Some counties not named, advised by their lawyers, say they are not necessarily affected yet.
And some, including some named in the suit, say they are waiting for a final ruling from the Arkansas Supreme Court.
So which counties will now or soon begin issuing marriage licenses to same sex couples remains to be seen.
— C.L. and H.E.