DENVER — Denver Mayor Michael Hancock marked the first year of civil unions in Colorado with a reception for gay couples at the city's clerk and recorder office.
Denver has issued 859 licenses for civil unions since the law took effect May 1 last year. That's many more than other Front Range counties. El Paso issued 289, Jefferson 209, and Boulder 205.
A statewide total was not immediately available.
Colorado bans same-sex marriage. But civil unions grant gay couples rights similar to marriage, including enhanced inheritance and parental rights. People in civil unions also have the ability to make medical decisions for their partners.
Hancock said Thursday that Colorado "has made great strides toward bringing down the walls that divide."