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Ledyard, NY Goes Out Of Its Way To Cover Criminal Actions of Town Clerk Who Refuse Issue Same Sex Marriage Licenses

When Rose Marie Belforti, became the Ledyard town clerk she took a job with responsibilities. a job whose duties she would have to uphold.  And now because of same sex marriage in New York she thinks she is entitles to be derilict in her duties and NOT process marriage licenses because of her “religious beliefs”.

Recently two other upsate New York town clerks resigned their jobs rather than violate their “religious” beliefs by signing marriage licenses for gay and lesbian couples but Rose Marie Belforti has convinced the town of Ledyard to make special accommodations for Belforti and her homophobic hate by hiring “deputy clerks” to process same sex marriage licenses (who will not always be available during office hours) despite the fact that Belforti has broken the law by rufusing to issue same sex marriage liscenses.

On August 30, Katie Carmichael and Deirdre DiBiaggio sought a marriage license at the Ledyard town clerk’s office, but were denied one by Belforti and she committed a crime when she denied a license to the couple. It is a misdemeanor in New York for a public official to knowingly refrain “from performing a duty which is imposed upon them by law or is clearly inherent in the nature of his office.”

So far Adam Van Buskirk, the Ledyard city attorney, has no comment and has done nothing to prosecute Rose Marie Belforti actions.  Jon E. Budelmann, the Cayuga County district attorney, is investigating, but any action hinges on finding that Belforti intended to deprive the couple of a benefit  And  Eric M. Schneiderman, the state attorney general will not respond to any inquiries about this case.



Will Kohler

Will Kohler is a noted LGBT historian, journalist and owner of Back2Stonewall.com. A longtime gay activist, Will fought on the front lines of the AIDS epidemic with ACT-UP and continues fighting today for LGBT acceptance and full equality. Will’s work has been referenced in notable media venues as MSNBC and BBC News, The Washington Post, The Daily Beast, Hollywood Reporter, and Raw Story,

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