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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- The nearly four-decade-old law that prevents gays from adopting children will disappear from Florida's statutes on July 1.

Republican Gov. Rick Scott signed a bill Thursday that removes the language -- though the ban hasn't been enforced for the past five years.

The bill signed by Scott also promotes adoption, but the original language was changed to include a provision removing the gay adoption ban from state law.

While conservative Republicans objected to the idea, others said that it simply changes the law to reflect reality.

A judge ruled five years ago that the state's ban was unconstitutional.

House Republicans sought to pass legislation that would have allowed private adoption agencies from refusing gay couples, but that effort date late in the regular legislative session that ended last month.