N.C. Governor: HB2 fix not perfect but he supports it

FILE- In this Dec. 15, 2016 file photo, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper holds a press conference in Raleigh, N.C. North Carolina Republican lawmakers said Wednesday night, March 29, 2017, that they have an agreement with Gov. Cooper on legislation to resolve a standoff over the state's "bathroom bill." GOP leaders announced the new legislation would be debated and voted on Thursday. (Chris Seward/The News & Observer via AP, File)

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina’s Democratic governor says he’s on board with a proposal to end the standoff with Republican legislative leaders over the state’s “bathroom bill,” saying “it’s not a perfect deal” but begins to repair the state’s reputation.

Gov. Roy Cooper released the statement Wednesday night about the same time GOP lawmakers unveiled the details of their agreement.

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. And local governments couldn’t pass nondiscrimination ordinances covering things like sexual orientation and gender identity until December 2020.

House Speaker Tim Moore and Senate leader Phil Berger says the legislation will be debated and voted on Thursday. It’s unclear if the votes are there to pass it.

Berger and Moore said in a written statement they’re pleased the proposal “fully protects bathroom safety and privacy.”

Details about the replacement weren’t immediately available. It’s also unclear whether there were enough House and Senate votes to pass it. Cooper didn’t immediately comment.

Republican lawmakers and Cooper have sought an agreement by this week because the NCAA was poised to deny championship events to the state unless changes were made to the law known as House Bill 2. HB2 has prompted some businesses to halt expansions and entertainers to cancel concerts in the state.
Leaders of national and state gay rights groups said they are opposed to any legislation that essentially doesn’t repeal HB2 completely and nothing else.

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