In addition, because the Supreme Court invalidated the federal Defense of Marriage Act DOMA in June more information here , married same-sex couples living in fair marriage states like New York now have access to all of the federal benefits of marriage as well. Orlando will make us stronger as a community. On December 2, , same-sex marriage legislation was defeated on the floor of the New York State Senate by a vote of 24 to 38;  no Republican voted yes, eight Democrats voted no. Another bill, A, was passed in the Assembly on May 12, with a majority of ,  but languished in the Senate during the November 10 special session. Vermont in had become the first state to allow civil unions for gay couples. But Republican lawmakers spent much of the week negotiating changes to the marriage bill to protect religious institutions, especially those that oppose same-sex weddings. Spano, that Westchester County could lawfully extend government benefits to same-sex couples in out-of-state marriages. Married same-sex couples will now be able to file joint state tax returns, take spousal deductions on state income taxes, exclude employer contributions for spousal health insurance from taxable income for state taxes, exempt property inherited from spouses from state estate tax, and receive tax benefits when transferring interests in property. For that reason, they may not treat one group of applicants differently from another group solely because of personal religious objections. In early , efforts to block the law were unsuccessful and it took effect that March. For two married men who are using a surrogate to carry their child, only the biological father can be automatically listed on the birth certificate. Supporters of the measure described the victory in New York as especially symbolic — and poignant — because of its rich place in the history of gay rights: However, depending on where you live, you should be aware that your home state may not recognize your marriage as valid. In October , State Comptroller Alan Hevesi indicated that the state's retirement system would recognize same-sex marriages performed outside New York State for purposes of state retirement and pension benefits. In , after the legalization of same-sex marriage in New York, the Research Library at the Buffalo History Museum became the first known library in the United States to collect wedding memorabilia from legally-wed same-sex couples. McDonald of the capital region.