Small businesses to let lawmakers know HB2's impact

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Small Business Day (WTVD)

The major-party candidates for North Carolina governor will talk with small-business owners about their ideas for helping them.

Republican Gov. Pat McCrory and Democratic Attorney General Roy Cooper are among the speakers scheduled for Small Business Day on Wednesday, which was organized by the state chapter of the National Federation of Independent Business. Republican Lt. Gov. Dan Forest also will speak to the midday crowd of NFIB members meeting for lunch inside at a Raleigh skyscraper.

The NFIB has 7,500 dues-paying members in North Carolina.

During the meeting, some business owners are expected to call on leaders to repeal House Bill 2, saying it's bad for business and for employees.

House Bill 2, which was approved by the Republican legislature and McCrory on March 23, was in response to a Charlotte City Council ordinance approved in February that would have extended protections to gays and lesbians as well as bisexual and transgender people while at hotels, restaurants, and stores.

Charlotte would have allowed transgender people to use the restroom aligned with their gender identity. HB2 also blocked people from filing discrimination suits against their employers and prevents local governments from setting minimum wage standards.

Since the passage of the controversial law, a string of entertainers and musicians - including Pearl Jam, Bruce Springsteen, Ringo Starr, Demi Lovato and Nick Jonas, and Cirque du Soleil - have canceled shows in North Carolina. The NBA has also said a change in HB2 is needed for the 2017 All-Star Game to stay in Charlotte.

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