Representatives in the US state of North Carolina have said they have reached a deal on repealing the controversial anti-transgender "bathroom bill", also known as House Bill 2 (HB2). In a statement, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper said he supported the compromise that will be introduced to the state legislature.
"It's not a perfect deal, but it repeals House Bill 2 and begins to repair our reputation." Cooper said.
The deal would repeal the law but would keep bathroom policy in the hands of state legislators, as well as banning cities from passing nondiscrimination ordinances around sexual orientation and gender identity until December 2020.
Former Governor Pat McCrory, who signed the bill into law, urged the state General Assembly and Governor Cooper to support a deal that "still respects privacy and let Supreme Court resolve issue for our nation."
The deal will be introduced to the state legislature on Thursday (30 March) for a vote, although it is unclear whether or not the repeal will pass.
In late 2016 – days before Cooper moved into the Govenor's Mansion – a deal between the soon-to-be governor and state Republicans fell through during a special legislative session.
"Compromise requires give and take from all sides"
Called for the sole reason of repealing HB2, the session descended into both sides accusing the other of reneging on the deal as the strongly partisan state fell to distrust. Even the governor's race went on longer than expected, as McCrory took almost a month to concede to Cooper while his supporters challenged vote counts in counties across the state.
State Senate Leader Phil Berger and House Speaker Tim Moore, both Republicans, issued a joint statement on Wednesday (29 March) night saying: "Compromise requires give and take from all sides, and we are pleased this proposal fully protects bathroom safety and privacy."
Since the bill was first passed in early 2016, several companies have cancelled plans to expand into the state. A recent analysis from the Associated Press (AP) estimated that the bill would lose the state $3.76bn (£3bn) – adding that that was "likely an underestimation of the law's true costs".