Golden Valley became the seventh Minnesota municipality to pass a domestic partner registry last week. The city council passed the measure unanimously at a vote of 5 to 0 and the Minneapolis suburb will join Minneapolis, St. Paul, Duluth, Rochester and Edina as well as Maplewood which passed a registry on Nov. 8. The registry will go into effect in January 2011.

“While domestic partner registries… have limited legal effect, they can provide couples (different-sex and same-sex) with the opportunity to document the existence of their relationship, which can help with securing benefits from employers, businesses, or others who wish to use the registration as the basis for doing so,” said Outfront Minnesota in an email message to supporters hailing the move. “Additionally, in every city that has passed such a proposal, leaders and residents have spoken out about the positive message a partner ordinance sends about the welcoming, inclusive nature of the community.”

At least five other communities are considering a domestic partner registry.

Under Minnesota law, municipalities are prevented from offering domestic partner benefits to their employers.