(CNN) - New Hampshire Gov. Jon Lynch said Thursday that he will sign into law a bill allowing same-sex couples to wed - but only after the state legislature agrees to his terms.
"This morning, I met with House and Senate leaders, and the sponsors of this legislation, and gave them language that will provide additional protections to religious institutions," he said in a statement. "This new language will provide the strongest and clearest protections for religious institutions and associations, and for the individuals working with such institutions.
"...But following that tradition means we must act to protect both the liberty of same-sex couples and religious liberty. In their current form, I do not believe these bills accomplish those goals."
Lynch said if the state legislature passes the new language, he will sign the bill into law. Otherwise, he will veto the measure.
"We can and must treat both same-sex couples and people of certain religious traditions with respect and dignity," he said. "I believe this proposed language will accomplish both of these goals and I urge the legislature to pass it."
Lynch said he has spent the past weeks and months speaking to lawmakers, religious leaders and constituents in order to form his decision after New Hampshire's Legislature voted to approved same-sex marriages in the state.
The Granite State will, if approved by the governor, become the sixth state in the nation - alongside Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, Iowa and Vermont - to provide marriage benefits to gays and lesbians.
"Given the cultural, historical and religious significance of the word marriage, this is a meaningful change," he said.
"I have heard, and I understand, the very real feelings of same-sex couples that a separate system is not an equal system. That a civil law that differentiates between their committed relationships and those of heterosexual couples undermines both their dignity and the legitimacy of their families."