The Utah Senate decided Tuesday to codify and save the Utah Marriage Commission as federal funding that has supported it is evaporating.
It voted 22-2 to pass HB147 to write into state law the commission that was created 15 years ago by administrative action, and provide an estimated $8,800 a year to fund its activities. The bill now goes to Gov. Gary Herbert for his signature.
Sponsoring Rep. LaVar Christensen, R-Draper, earlier said it is needed because since 1960, "the marriage rate has declined by one-third, the divorce rate has doubled, and more than one half of all first-born children are born out of wedlock."