HB2 changes don’t guarantee NBA All-Star game will stay in Charlotte

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WNCN) — Many believe there’s a strong possibility Charlotte may not be able to keep the NBA All-Star Game after state lawmakers did not make changes to the most controversial part of House Bill 2.

The prospects of losing the game certainly have people in Charlotte alarmed.

For now, the game will be at Time Warner Cable Arena in February.

But after the General Assembly adjourned without major changes to House Bill 2…many aren’t convinced it will stay.

“I already have friends coming down who want to see it next year, so we definitely want it to stay here,” said Terrence Swinton, a Charlotte resident.

“It’s a wake-up call for North Carolina and for Charlotte.  Money is not everything,” said Yazilyah Clary, who supports House Bill 2.

House Bill 2 is a topic that’s divided North Carolinians for months now.

Now that state lawmakers are finished their legislative session, some believe Charlotte could lose the NBA All-Star Game and the estimated $100 million it would bring in.

“I think it’s loss of revenue for small businesses.  I don’t think it’s fair that the city is going to be hurt by it financially,” said Jennifer Colas, who opposes House Bill 2.

Lawmakers made one change to House Bill 2 before they adjourned, now allowing employees to sue in state court for wrongful termination.

But HB2 opponents say that won’t be enough to satisfy the NBA…who called for changes, saying the law was discriminatory to the LGBT community.

Many though are pleased with HB2…saying it provides protections for bathrooms, locker rooms and shower facilities.

“I’m all for LGBT rights and things like that, but I don’t see why it’s such a big deal as to what bathroom you use.  Sometimes you have to pick your battles and i think this is a poor battle,” Clary said.

But opponents believe it’s wrong for the state…and for the Queen City.

“The younger generation kind of accepts a little bit more of diversity and people’s different ways of life,” Colas added.

The city of Charlotte has also paid for more than $27 million of improvements to be made to the arena.

There is no official word when we will hear from the NBA on this matter.

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