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Utah to pay $300K to defend gay marriage ban

8:36 PM, Jan 16, 2014   |    comments
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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Utah will spend $300,000 to bring in a team of three outside attorneys to help defend the state's same-sex marriage ban before a federal appeals court.

The Utah Attorney General's Office announced Thursday it has chosen Gene Schaerr (SHAYR) to lead the team. Attorney general Sean Reyes says in a news release that Schaerr has handled dozens of cases before federal appeals court. Schaerr has agreed to charge the state $200,000.

The state will pay attorneys John Bursch and Monte Neil Stewart $50,000 each to help out.

Gov. Gary Herbert, a Republican, pledged to defend Utah's same-sex marriage ban after a federal judge overturned it on Dec. 20. Utah has appealed to the Denver-based 10th Circuit Court of Appeals.

Hundreds of couples married until the U.S. Supreme Court halted the weddings on Jan. 6.

(Copyright 2014 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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