Both the National Basketball Association and the National Collegiate Athletic Association are back in the “doing additional business in the state of North Carolina” mode following a partial repeal of the state’s HB2 bathroom law. The NBA has awarded Charlotte the 2019 All-Star Game and the NCAA has various sports tournaments taking place in that state.
In March, Governor Roy Cooper signed a new law, HB142, which restricts cities and counties from passing local anti-discrimination laws through 2020, making it a state call. Former Governor Pat McCrory signed the bill which did not allow North Carolina governments to write laws that prevented discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. The North Carolina General Assembly has to approve any local legislation protecting LGBT rights.
HB142 is a compromise and came after the NCAA threatened to pull all college tournaments out of the state for a six-year period. The National Basketball Association is fine with the HB142 legislation. The HB2 or bathroom law caused the NBA to move the 2017 All Star Game from Charlotte to New Orleans.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver seemingly has some reservations but all is good.
“While we understand the concerns of those who say the repeal of HB2 did not go far enough, we believe the recent legislation eliminates the most egregious aspects of the prior law.” The NCAA reluctantly accepted HB142 “because it restores the state to that legal landscape: a landscape similar to other jurisdictions presently hosting NCAA championships.”
The NCAA did issue a warning. “If we find that our expectations of a discrimination-free environment are not met, we will not hesitate to take necessary action at any time.”
The NCAA and NBA will take money over principle.
By Evan Weiner For The Politics Of Sports Business
This article was republished with permission from the original publisher, Evan Weiner.