CARSON CITY, Nevada - On Sunday evening, the Nevada state Assembly voted 28-14 to override Governor Jim Gibbons' veto of a domestic partner bill.
The Assembly's vote followed Saturday's 17-7 state Senate vote rejecting the governor's veto.
Senate Bill 283, which will go into effect on October 1, will give same-sex couples the same rights afforded married heterosexual families.
Critics argue that domestic partners already have the same rights by signing private contracts.
The new legislation overrides a constitutional amendment approved by Nevada voters in 2002 that defines marriage solely as a union between a man and a woman.
"I'm immensely pleased that the veto of the governor has been overridden," State Senator David Parks, who sponsored the bill, said.
"It's a great day for fairness and equality in Nevada," the senator said.
"This is the most important civil rights legislation we've had in all my years in the Legislature," Assemblywoman Sheila Reno, D-Reno, said.
"It is an issue of fairness for our citizens," she said.