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Despite confusion over same-sex marriage ruling, clerks in 42 counties issuing licenses

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MADISON (AP) — More than half of the counties in Wisconsin are issuing marriage licenses to gay couples.

County clerk offices in 42 of the state's 72 counties told The Associated Press on Monday that they were issuing licenses. Clerks in a few counties did not answer phone calls.

Many county clerks also are waiving the state's five-day waiting period so couples can marry in what may be a short window before ceremonies are halted by a court order.

Hundreds of couples have married since Friday when U.S. District Judge Barbara Crabb declared the state's ban on same-sex marriage unconstitutional.

Republican Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen has asked an appeals court to stop the marriages while he appeals Crabb's decision.

One of the counties in the Milwaukee area issuing same-sex marriage licenses is Waukesha County.

"At this point we`re going to continue until further notice," Waukesha County Clerk Kathleen Novack said.

Novack says she made her decision on Monday morning to start issuing the marriage licenses.

"It would be hard to pinpoint something that says no, this overrules it," Novack said.

Six same-sex couples were waiting outside Novack's office when she opened.

Shortly thereafter, some of them married in the Courthouse courtyard.

Novack says she consulted with her county's legal team before making the call.

"I know I started with kinda keeping a running total even starting over the weekend on what other counties were doing," Novack said.

As of 5:00 p.m. Monday, Waukesha County had granted about 18 marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Novack says they will continue, unless a judge rules they stop.

"If a stay is granted, then obviously we'll be stopping," Novack said.

In southeastern Wisconsin, Sheboygan, jefferson, Waukesha, Milwaukee and Kenosha counties are now issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Washington, Ozaukee, Walworth and Racine counties are not issuing licenses at this time. Clerks at those offices either declined interviews with FOX6 News or didn't return calls.

Office staff in those counties say they've decided not to issue licenses until further guidance comes from the state.

Here are the counties issuing licenses -- according to the Associated Press:

1.Adams

2.Ashland

3.Bayfield

4.Brown

5.Buffalo

6.Burnett

7.Clark

8.Columbia

9.Crawford

10.Dane

11.Dodge

12.Door

13.Douglas

14.Florence

15.Fond du Lac

16.Forest

17.Green

18.Iowa

19.Iron

20.Jackson

21.Jefferson

22.Juneau

23.Kenosha

24.La Crosse

25.Langlade

26.Lincoln

27.Manitowoc

28.Milwaukee

29.Monroe

30.Oneida

31.Pepin

32.Pierce

33.Polk

34.Rock

35.Rusk

36.Sauk

37.Sawyer

38.Sheboygan

39.Taylor

40.Vilas

41.Waukesha

42.Wood

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