Gay Rights Rally

Gay rights activists gathered Sunday at city hall to tell the city, though same sex benefits were not approved, the issue is not going away.

The controversy came to a head about a week ago, when the Colorado Springs City Council voted to stop offering medical benefits to the same sex partners of city employees. On April 22, City Council voted 8-1 to stop offering the benefits.

But, the debate between the two sides continues. City councilman and Vice Mayor, Richard Skorman is leading the fight for the rights of same sex partners to receive the benefits.

The group gathered at city hall says, they will continue to make their voices heard, until the benefits are restored. Some say the issue is not one of gay or strait, but simply one of basic human rights. They add, being gay doesn't make a person special, and they're not asking for special rights, just equal ones.

Councilman Skorman says he hopes both sides will sit down and look for alternatives.

But, on the other hand, many people, including Mayor Lionel Rivera remain opposed to the benefits. He says, for him, it is a matter of principle, and he will not change his mind.

Some believe the decision to revoke the same sex benefits will have a negative economic impact on Colorado Springs. They liken the decision to Amendment 2, which was passed in the early 1990's. That law prohibited laws from protecting gays from discrimination. It was later ruled unconstitutional.

Rocky Scott, of the Economic Development Council says people looking to invest in small businesses may be turned off by the decision to revoke same sex benefits.