NC Senate prepared to act on Charlotte bathroom ordinance

Phil Berger
Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger, R-Rockingham.(AP Photo)

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – North Carolina Senate Leader Phil Berger says the state Senate is prepared to act if Attorney General Roy Cooper refuses to enforce a state law keeping men out of women’s bathrooms.

Sen. Berger, R-Rockingham, announced Tuesday he has appointed a Senate work group to work with the House on legislation to address the issue, which stems from an ordinance that now allows transgender people to use the restroom of their choice in Charlotte.

“Attorney General Roy Cooper has admitted state laws trump local ordinances, and he is the one person with the power to stop this nonsense and enforce our state’s criminal laws,” Berger said in a statement released Tuesday. “But if he refuses to do his job and protect the safety and privacy of our children, then the Senate stands ready to return to session and resolve this issue quickly.”

Cooper has said he doesn’t see a need for the state legislature to overturn the provision in Charlotte’s nondiscrimination ordinance.

Charlotte city attorney Bob Hagemann says the ordinance was changed to simply extend legal protections to gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgender individuals.

Hagemann said that Charlotte Police Chief Kerr Putney assured him that law enforcement would enforce laws against any “non-female-identifying male” who tries to use a woman’s bathroom.

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