SALT LAKE CITY -- The last of the Utah counties that were holding out on issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples have reversed course and decided to hand out licenses to all eligible applicants.

Officials for the four holdouts -- Box Elder, Utah, Piute and San Juan counties -- told The Associated Press they made the decision Thursday to offer licenses to same-sex couples. Utah has 29 counties.

County clerks say they had little choice after an appeals court denied a motion for a stay on a ruling Friday from U.S. District Judge Robert Shelby. He ruled Utah's ban unconstitutional. The state is preparing an appeal.

The Utah attorney general's office had said counties could be held in contempt of federal court if they refused to comply.