There’s already a lot at stake in the battle over repealing HB2.
In addition to what’s obviously at stake for LGBT North Carolinians, the state stands to lose millions in revenue related to major sports events as it faces boycotts.
Now, WRAL reports, a company will likely bring 1,500 jobs to Wake County – with an average salary of $100,000 – if HB2 can be repealed.
From the exclusive WRAL story:
The decision appears contingent on the repeal of House Bill 2, which could add pressure on lawmakers to compromise on a repeal. The company has not been identified publicly.
House Bill 2 requires people to use public bathrooms that match their birth gender and excludes gay and transgender people from discrimination protections.
Various sports leagues and businesses have moved events and jobs out of North Carolina because of the law.
Members of the Wake County legislative delegation confirmed to WRAL News that they have been briefed on the potential jobs announcement.
There have been several attempts to repeal House Bill 2, but lawmakers have been unable to reach a consensus.
“Unable to reach a consensus” may be a polite way of putting it.
Earlier this week Democrats, Republicans and LGBT advocates held dueling press events over the stalled repeal effort and top GOP lawmakers can’t agree whether they need the governor’s help in negotiating a compromise or if it’s a violation of the separation of powers for him to be involved.
N.C. House Speaker Tim Moore (R-Cleveland) now says, “I don’t know that any further phone calls are warranted at this point” between GOP leadership in the General Assembly and Gov. Roy Cooper, the state’s top Democrat.
At issue is House Bill 186, touted by its sponsors as a compromise bill.
The bill would repeal HB2 but replace with a law that would constrain local governments that want to pass nondiscrimination ordinances like the one passed last year that extended protections to gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people in Charlotte. The law would limit which restrooms local governments could regulate, add stiffer penalties for crimes committed in restrooms and changing areas and require a public referendum if opponents of such local laws gather enough signatures.
Any such ordinances would also not apply to religious or non-profit organizations, including schools and hospitals.
Opponents of the bill – including top Democratic lawmakers and Gov. Roy Cooper – say the referendum provision would ignite fierce HB2-like campaigns across the state rather than solve the problem created by the state law.
Democratic leaders and HB2 advocates say they aren’t willing to put minority rights to votes in communities all over North Carolina and that it would do nothing to restore the state’s reputation and lift boycotts.