Another 500 Jobs Lost Because of HB2?
500 jobs could have been coming to Buncombe County but HB2 has pushed another opportunity away. The fallout from HB2 is hurting NC economically and is keeping hundreds, perhaps thousands of jobs from coming to NC.
"The site selectors called us yesterday to say that while they loved Asheville, they loved our team, and loved their last visit here, the company's CEO has said that they will not invest another dime in North Carolina until HB2 is addressed," Cramer said.
"Any hint of discrimination should be scrubbed from the law," she said in remarks to about 140 people at a lunch meeting on the Biltmore Estate with area state legislators. Cramer said the chamber will work with legislators on possible changes.
The primary purposes of HB2 are to strike down an ordinance passed by Charlotte City Council that would prohibit discrimination against LGBT people in employment and public accommodations and to keep other local governments from passing similar rules. The state General Assembly passed the law in a one-day special session March 23 and Gov. Pat McCrory signed it that night.
Cramer implied that Buncombe was a strong possibility for the company's expansion and said afterward that Buncombe is "not completely out of the running" for the project.
Removing "any hint of discrimination" in the sense that Cramer described it would represent almost a 180-degree turn by the General Assembly.
HB2 does touch on other subjects, like preventing local governments from adopting minimum wages or imposing special requirements on contractors, but legislative backers of the law have emphasized overruling the Charlotte ordinance and preventing others like it in the state. They say a major concern is keeping men from having access to women's bathrooms and dressing rooms.