N. Carolina hoping its changes to “bathroom bill” help
The state wants to avoid another costly hit when the NCAA selects its title sites.
raleigh, n.c. » Basketball- mad North Carolina is hoping its move to roll back its “bathroom bill” will help it avoid another costly hit when the NCAA selects four years of championship sites for a variety of sports.
College athletics’ governing body said that it is deciding thisweek on locations for tournaments through the spring of 2022 and that it wouldn’t award any to North Carolina if the law known as House Bill 2was still on the books.
On Thursday, amid the mounting pressure, North Carolina’s Republicancontrolled legislature voted to undo HB 2, and Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper signed the measure into law.
NCAA president Mark Emmert said the NCAA’s board of directors — the association’s ultimate ruling body composed of mostly university presidents— will meet over the next several days with legal analysts. A decision about whether North Carolina sites will be considered as event hosts needs to be made by early next week, Emmert said.
While lawmakers repealed the much- criticized provision that said transgender people must use the public bathrooms that correspond to the sex on their birth certificate, activists complained that the new law still denies gay and transgender people certain protections from discrimination.
The stakes are high for North Carolina: The Associated Press calculated that the statemade $ 71.4 million from28 neutral-siteNCAAevents in the five academic years ending last spring. Amore lucrative slate of events may be in jeopardy in this latest round of decisions.
Cities including Raleigh and Greensboro have submitted 133 bids to host NCAA championship events in such sports as golf, swimming and basketball through the 2021- 22 academic year, with a potential economic impact of about $ 250 million, according to the North Carolina Sports Association.
The NCAA has already pulled seven championship events in baseball, soccer, lacrosse and other sports from North Carolina for the current academic year because of HB 2. Also in jeopardy are events for the upcoming school year, including March 2018 NCAA men’s basketball tournament games, awarded to Charlotte during a previous round of selections.
The Greensboro area — a frequent host nicknamed “Tournament Town” — has submitted 55 bids through 2022 that could bring in more than $ 100 million to the area, according to the Greensboro Convention & Visitors Bureau. Eight events over the five academic years ending in 2015- 16 had an economic impact on the Greensboro area of more than $ 33 million, the bureau said.