Officials in the city of New York are hoping to avoid disappointment and confusion by rationing the number of gay and lesbian couples who can tie the knot this Sunday – the first day the state can officially marry same-sex couples.
The New York Times revealed that 764 marriage licenses will be made available through the lottery. Couples who aren’t successful on Sunday will be able to try and get married next week when it is not so oversubscribed. Clerk offices in all boroughs will open for two more hours each day to try and meet the demand.
Micheal Bloomberg, NYC Mayor, commented, “The last thing we want to have happen is for couples to wait online for hours and hours, only to walk away upset on what was supposed to be the biggest day of their lives.”
He added that the scheme, open to same sex and heterosexual couples, was the “fairest way” to give out licenses. New York’s clerk’s office has been inundated with marriage requests in the last week. 2661 licence applications were logged online and around 1728 were from gay couples. More couples are expected to turn up on Sunday. The lottery is up and running and ends on Thursday. Winners will be informed on Friday.
The lottery has divided people’s opinions. Alan Miles, 45, who lives in Chelsea and his fiancee of seven years, Drew Glick, said, “It’s the fairest, best way to ration out these slots.”
However, Staten Island’s Maria Romagnuolo, 49, who plans to marry her partner, Wendy Bloom-Romagnuolo, 48, this weekend, called the lottery a, “total joke”.