North Carolina’s economy will take a significant hit if the state allows anti-LGBTQ House Bill 2 to remain law. According to a report from the Associated Press, North Carolina will sustain $3.76 billion in lost business over 12 years.
Although North Carolina boasts a $500 billion economy, over $3 billion in damages do not go unnoticed. PayPal, Deutsche Bank, the NCAA, and Lionsgate all pulled out of the state after the bill’s introduction, with performers such as Bruce Springsteen, Ringo Starr, and Bryan Adams boycotting North Carolina amid the law’s introduction. CNBC reports that PayPal’s canceled facility alone would have stimulated the economy with an extra $2.66 billion poured into the state.
House Bill 2, which was passed in 2016, bans local governments from creating LGBTQ antidiscrimination ordinances across the state. It also bans transgender people from accessing gender-segregated facilities—such as bathrooms—that align with their gender identity. East Carolina University Professor James Kleckley stressed that H.B. 2 is a law with many known negative effects and zero benefits to the state.
“If you look at a law, whether or not you agree with it or don’t agree with it, there are going to be positive effects and negative effects,” he told CNBC. “Virtually everything we know about [HB2] are the negative effects. Even anecdotally, I don’t know any positive effects.”
Previously, the NCAA threatened to pull over 130 bids from North Carolina if H.B. 2 remains law. The North Carolina Sports Association claims the pull-out would cause the state to lose “more than $250 million in potential economic impact.”