The Washington Times-Herald

Local News

January 28, 2014

City Council votes not to support same-sex marriage ban

The Washington City Council meeting mirrored much of the rest of the state on Monday night, as the ban on same-sex marriage, House Joint Resolution 3 (HJR3) made its into the meeting.

In what initially looked like it would be an uneventful meeting for Council members turned into an extended debate on HJR3 after Councilman Blake Chambers asked members of the council to consider supporting a resolution asking the General Assembly to not vote in favor of HJR3, the resolution that would place a ban on same-sex marriage and make it part of Indiana's Constitution.

Chambers said other cities such as Evansville, New Albany and Indianapolis, already have similar resolutions and Indiana law already states that same-sex marriage is illegal within the state.

"In football it would have been called piling on in the old days," said Chambers. "It's one thing to deny someone of their rights, but those rights were taken away in 1997. Why are we trying to take them away again?"

With the addition of I-69, Daviess County hopes to attract big business to its corridor that will be one of only a few sites in the United States that offers rail access, in addition to close proximity to an interstate. Chambers said he hopes that in the future, the county will be able to attract business and industry similar to those found in larger cities.

"Eli Lilly and Cummins asked that the General Assembly not pass this," said Chambers. "They thought it might hinder their ability to attract good employees. They want to recruit the best and brightest employees."

Councilman Joe Fleck seconded Chambers' motion and said that regardless of whether the General Assembly passes the proposed amendment, Indiana law will still state that gay marriage is illegal in the state.

"This is only going to hurt the taxpayers," said Fleck. "If they turn it down, it's already illegal."

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