It appears that the North Carolina Legislature is poised to repeal its venomously anti-LGBT HB2 as early as tomorrow (Tuesday, Dec. 20), after losing millions in revenue and adding significantly to its reputation for being discriminatory.
But that victory comes at a price: repeal of Charlotte, N.C.’s ordinance protecting LGBT from discrimination.
The Charlotte City Council voted today to repeal the ordinance, and Gov.-elect Roy Cooper said that lawmakers have promised to call a special session as early tomorrow to repeal HB2, according to this report by Reuters.
“I hope they will keep their word to me,” Cooper said in a statement. “Full repeal will help to bring jobs, sports and entertainment events back and will provide the opportunity for strong LGBT protections in our state.”
(I’m not holding my breath that the legislators will keep their word. They have already called a special session to pass legislation stripping much of the governor’s powers away before Cooper can even take office — a measure that out-going Gov. Pat McCrory, who lost his job in large part because of his support for HB2. Thankfully, the North Carolina NAACP has already announced a lawsuit challenging the new law.)
The Charlotte City Council, following several public hearings, voted last Feb. 22 to approved a nondiscrimination ordinance that included protections for LGBT people. The very next day, N.C. House Speaker Tim Moore called for legislative action to overturn that ordinance. The N.C. Legislature then convened for a special session a month later, and on March 23, passed HB 2. Then-Gov. Pat McCrory signed into law immediately. The Charlotte mayor and city council had originally rejected the legislature’s deal wherein lawmakers promised to repeal HB2 if Charlotte would repeal its nondiscrimination ordinance.