ACC will again consider North Carolina for future championship events

On March 23, the NCAA said it wouldn't consider scheduling any championship events in the Tar Heel State through 2022 if the bill didn't change.

NCAA President Mark Emmert told reporters Thursday that the association's board of governors will have to discuss the new legislation before deciding whether they're comfortable hosting neutral-site championships in the state again.

So, was Charlotte's transgender ordinance wrong as many elected officials said, and thus deserving of the remedy of House Bill 2?

Atlantic Coast Conference commissioner John Swofford released a statement Thursday on House Bill 142, the compromise law North Carolina governor Roy Cooper signed to repeal House Bill 2.

The measure next moves to the state House of Representatives for a vote.

Charlotte had hosted the ACC football championship game from 2010 until 2015 and the state of North Carolina is the hub of the conference with four member schools in the University of North Carolina, North Carolina State, Wake Forest and Duke. When Cooper signed HB142 into law, it appeared no one was happy.

Many said that the new law still denies gay and transgender people certain protections from discrimination. Between Tuesday afternoon and Thursday morning, the Republican leadership and the Democratic governor hammered out a compromise meant to repeal the most odious parts of HB2. It passed the House by a 70-48 vote, despite a push by some conservative Republicans delay the vote to next week.

"So it'll be good to get that behind us".

Conservatives, meanwhile, staunchly defended HB2 and condemned the new measure. Dan Bishop, a primary sponsor of HB2, said on the Senate floor as the rollback was approved 32-16, with nine of 15 Democrats among the yes votes.

It makes it so state and local agencies in North Carolina can no longer regulate access to bathrooms or locker rooms, effectively ending the ban on trans people using the bathroom or locker room for their gender identity.

HB2 also invalidated any local ordinances protecting gay or transgender people from discrimination in the workplace or in public accommodations. "The reputation of North Carolina was not fixed".

And in a statement, the NAACP's North Carolina chapter said, "Fundamentally, any moratorium on civil rights is not a compromise; it is a contradiction with the principle of equal protection under the law and our moral values".

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

McCrory signed HB2 into law, but said he supported a repeal.

Cooper acknowledges that it's not a ideal deal and stops short of many things the state needs to do.

During the existence of HB2, companies and organizations that opposed the law withdrew events from the state and even called off plans that would have created jobs. That's a morale boost for a state that prides itself on college sports. The Charlotte Observer's editorial board said the new bill "does not do one thing to protect the LGBT community and locks in H.B".

The NCAA already pulled championship events from the state this year because of HB2.

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.

"They do not have the power at the local level to change the definition of gender, which is really what it comes down to, are we going to change the definition of gender or not?" Because that's what this is about: money and basketball.

  • Larry Hoffman