City of Somerville

Agenda Item
Ordinance Ordained.
Jun 25, 2020 7:00 PM

Assistant City Solicitor submitting an Ordinance to recognize Domestic Partnerships, as recommended by the Legislative Matters Committee on 6/18/20.


Category:Officer's CommunicationPurposes:Ordinance

Official Text

To the Honorable City Council:


Attached you will find a draft Ordinance that would add provisions to Chapter 6 of the Code of Ordinances regarding Domestic Partnerships.


This Ordinance is being submitted in response to City Council Item #210003. 


As always, please contact me if I can be of further assistance.


Hannah Pappenheim

Assistant City Solicitor


Amendments / Conditions

AMENDED:              - In Section 6-89 Subsection C change "two persons" to "people";
- In Section 6-89 Subsection C delete Paragraph 5;
- In Section 6-89 Subsection E change “she or he” to “they”;
- In Section 6-90 Subsection A change “both” to “all”;
- In Section 6-90 Subsection B Paragraph 2 change “other domestic partner” to “other domestic partners”; and
- In Section 6-90 Subsection B Paragraph 2 change both occurrences of “his or her” to “their”.

Meeting History

Jun 25, 2020 7:00 PM Video City Council Regular Meeting

Councilor Davis reviewed this Ordinance, and proposed several amendments to broaden Domestic Partnerships to more than two persons. He said government shouldn't be defining what a family is, and in fact has done a poor job of it in the past. Councilor Scott urged that the Ordinance be voted on tonight. Councilor McLaughlin expressed concern about voting on the item when the amendments were not "on paper."

Following Ordainment of the item, Reconsideration was moved, and Reconsideration failed on a unanimous roll call vote.

AYES:Wilfred N. Mbah, Mary Jo Rossetti, Kristen Strezo, William A. White Jr., Matthew McLaughlin, Jefferson Thomas ("J.T.") Scott, Ben Ewen-Campen, Jesse Clingan, Mark Niedergang, Lance L. Davis, Katjana Ballantyne