Emmert: NCAA will decide next week whether to return to NC

02 April, 2017, 01:35 | Author: Sam Montgomery

A controversial compromise bill that replaces HB2 has passed the North Carolina General Assembly and has been signed by Gov. Roy Cooper. Advocates for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people said the new version would allow discrimination to continue.

"Compromise is hard for both sides, but we are pleased this proposal fully protects safety and privacy by keeping men out of women's bathrooms, and removes the distraction of HB2 from North Carolina's success story of outpacing the rest of the United States in job growth", state Senate President Phil Berger said in a statement.

Cooper spokesman Ford Porter said "Republican leaders are more interested in political stunts than negotiating a compromise to repeal HB2" and that any religious conscience provision like one approved in IN in 2015 "remains a deal-breaker".

The proposal would repeal the law known as House Bill 2, but it would still leave state legislators in charge of policy on public restrooms. Over the past year, the ACC, NCAA and National Basketball Association pulled sports events from the state and businesses canceled expansions to protest the law.

By Thursday afternoon, the compromise bill had passed both houses of the legislature and been signed by Cooper.

The stakes are high: The Associated Press calculated that North Carolina made $71.4 million from 28 neutral-site NCAA events in the five academic years ending last spring.

"I'm personally just glad that we have a bill that at least they can debate and look at and we'll see what they decide", said NCAA President Mark Emmert Thursday evening.

Emmert said that, with committees needing to make decisions soon to meet bidding obligations, the board will meet in the next few days to debate the merits of the new law.

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The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), the governing body for intercollegiate athletics in the United States, previously said North Carolina would not be considered for future championship events unless HB2 was repealed.

"No state loves its college sports more than North Carolina". The men's basketball tournament, perhaps the league's premiere event, already was slated for the second year in a two-year stay in Brooklyn, New York, before returning to North Carolina in 2019 (Charlotte) and 2020 (Greensboro).

The director of the ACLU LGBT Project, James Esseks, said lawmakers "should be ashamed of this backroom deal".

As it stands now, the law requires transgender people to use the public restroom corresponding to the gender listed on their birth certificate. This inadequate, necessary replacement for a stupid, unnecessary law - repealing HB2 itself but extending restrictions on local anti-discrimination laws through 2020 - helps the latter far more than the former. Or tell lawmakers the repeal bill isn't good enough? "Now the question is. whether or not this new bill has changed the landscape sufficiently that the board is comfortable in returning to North Carolina".

The conference did not officially announce if all the events - including the big many football title game - will head back to the state, only that they will be considered. "We still have this problem that exists", Miller said.

They reacted, and they sent House Bill 2 through very quickly during a swift, one-day special session.

"If we could have props in here, I'd take a basketball covered in money and roll it down the middle aisle there." said Republican Rep. Carl Ford.

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