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Sarasota News Leader October 4, 2013 Page 18 of State will provide sufficient time to implement the Registry, including drafting required documents, systems updates, and staff training," DeMarsh added. One concern Shelin had, he wrote the News Leader, was that the drafts had dropped a provision enabling a partner to be involved in the education of a minor child living as a dependent within the partnership. "In fact, they've dropped the definition of 'dependent' at Christine Robinson's behest since she was unsatisfied with what the word meant," Shelin added. "I've pointed out that the [Internal Revenue Service] uses a series of 9 definitions," he continued, but in the end, Ken Shelin/Contributed photo the IRS has said that any person who receives 50 percent or more of his financial support The City of Sarasota registry opened on from someone else is considered to be a Election Day — Nov. 6 — in 2012. As of Oct. dependent of the provider. 1, 188 couples had signed up, Jan Thornburg, Another concern Shelin expressed in his the city's public information officer, told the email to the News Leader is that the drafts News Leader on Oct. 2. allow only county residents to register. "I don't understand why you wouldn't want anyone sharing a mutual residence, no matter where they lived, to be able to register and to enjoy the conferred rights while in Sarasota County," he wrote. "Non-residents are registering in Tampa and Sarasota because they may need medical treatment while in those places and want those rights to healthcare visitation and decision-making." On a more minor point, he noted, the drafts also do not "provide for possible administrative collaboration between the county and cities within the county which have [domestic partnership registries]." In Venice, 19 couples had registered between April 15 and Aug. 1, according to that city's website. Advocates of the registry have pointed out that it would not be just for gay couples. As recently as April, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that 48 percent of the women it had surveyed between the ages of 15 and 44 had lived with a male partner outside marriage between 2006 and 2010, compared to 43 percent in 2002 and 34 percent in 1995. The CDC report was based on interviews with 12,279 women in that age group. In March 2012, the U.S. Census found that 47 The Cities of Sarasota and Venice both have percent of 15.3 million cohabiting couples in such registries, for which Shelin was an the nation were 35 and older and 13 percent advocate. were 55 and older. %

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