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Sunday May 22nd

NCAA announces it will consider NC bids for championship sites

The NCAA Board of Governors announced Tuesday that it will consider North Carolina’s bids for championship sites — after a partial repeal of HB2 became law on Friday.

During the legislative process, the NCAA said it did not lobby for any particular change.

“The Board of Governors, however, was hopeful that the state would fully repeal HB2 in order to allow the host communities to ensure a safe, healthy, discrimination-free atmosphere for the championship sites,” the NCAA Board of Governors said in a press release.

And the board remains concerned about the public perception of a moratorium on enacting or amending non-discrimination ordinances until December 2020 — which passed as a part of N.C. House Bill 142, the Friday law.

N.C. President Pro Tempore Phil Berger, R-Rockingham, released a joint statement with N.C. Speaker of the House Tim Moore, R-Cleveland, praising the NCAA's decision.

"We are pleased with the NCAA's decision and acknowledgement that our compromise legislation "restores the state to … a landscape similar to other jurisdictions presently hosting NCAA championships," the legislators said in the statement.

Sen. Dan Blue, D-Wake, also thanked the NCAA for its decision in a tweet Tuesday morning.

North Carolina will be permitted to retain events assigned to the state for the 2017-18 year, and the board recognized the quality of previous championship events held in the state in its press release.

The board said it voted reluctantly, and that any sites in the state chosen by the NCAA as hosts will have to submit additional documentation to demonstrate how fans and athletes will be protected from discrimination.

“If we find that our expectations of a discrimination-free environment are not met, we will not hesitate to take necessary action at any time," the press release said.

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