By BECKY EHLER
Former County Attorney
I would like to clarify the cost and the position of the Los Alamos County Clerk during the same sex marriage license litigation case.
First, Los Alamos County did not expend any funds for representing the Clerk, Sharon Stover in the litigation. The entire Los Alamos County case was handled by the County’s in-house legal
staff. Likewise, Los Alamos County did not pay any of the cost of the Supreme Court case where the issue was decided for the entire state.
Second, the response to the temporary order did not indicate that Ms. Stover opposed same sex marriage. In fact, the Clerk’s case was built entirely upon the statutes that specifically direct
Clerks how to issue licenses and not on any other grounds. After the judge had the opportunity to consider those statutes, she directed the Clerk to issue the license to the couple that brought
the suit and Ms. Stover immediately did so.
Ms. Stover upheld her oath of office that required her to obey the statutes and did so without any expenditure of taxpayer dollars. The County Attorney’s office supported the Clerk’s office in
the same way it supports all County operations.