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Winston-Salem chronicle. (Winston-Salem, N.C.) 1974-current, March 31, 2016, Page A2, Image 2

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... Pholo by Chris ScwanVThe New? & Obwrver via AP Joaq*? Carcano, center, the lead plaintiff in the case, speaks during a press conference to announce the filing of a federal lawsuit challenging North Carolina's HB 2 law at the LGBT Center of Raleigh, N.C., on Monday, March 28,2016. Several different advocacy groups and some of the lead plaintiffs spoke at the event. Joaquin was born a woman and is now a man. Simone Bell with Lambda Law is at left; Chris Brook with the ACLU is at right. Lawsuit challenges North Carolina anti-discrimination law just passed BY GARY D. ROBERTSON ASSOCIATED PRESS RALEIGH ? Gay and transgender rights supporters wasted little time in chal lenging a new North Carolina law, filing a federal lawsuit Monday that called it dis criminatory and said it singles out LGBT people for "disfavored treatment." The law, which has also drawn strong opposition from major corporations including Apple and Google, was signed by Republican Gov. Pat McCrory last week. Attorney General Roy Cooper, who is challenging McCrory for governor, spoke out against House Bill 2 Tuesday morning during a press conference, saying his office "will not defend the constitutionality of the discrimination in House Bill 2." Cooper said HB2 conflicts with specif ic employment policies that are in place to protect workers based on gender identity. "We will argue it is unconstitutional as part of our defense of existing employment policies in the Attorney General's and State Treasurer's Office," Cooper said. There were calls for his resignation from Republican officials. The GOP-controlled legislature passed the law in response to a broad Charlotte ordinance that allowed transgender people to use the restroom aligned with their gen der identity. The new state law also pre vents all cities and counties from extend ing protections to cover sexual orientation and gender identity at restaurants, hotels and Stores. > "By singling out LGBT people for dis favored treatment and explicitly writing discrimination against transgender people into state law, (the new law) violates the most basic guarantees of equal treatment and the U.S. Constitution," the lawsuit said. With the law, North Carolina became the first state to require public school and university students to use only those bath rooms that match their birth certificates, according to the National Conference on State Legislatures. Advocates for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender rights say state legislators demonized them with bogus claims about bathroom risks. Supporters say the new law protects all people from having to share bathrooms with people who make them feel unsafe. Two transgender people, a lesbian law professor and several civil liberties groups sued. Lawsuit defendants include McCrory and the University of North Carolina sys tem, where one plaintiff works and another attends college. The system's 17 campuses also must comply with the law. Another defendant is Cooper, a Democrat who has criticized the law and wants it repealed. He is challenging McCrory this fall for governor. Cooper is a defendant because his office defends the state in litigation. Two plaintiffs - UNC-Chapel Hill employee Joaquin Carcano of Carrboro and Payton Grey McGarry, a student at UNC-Greensboro - were born female and now consider themselves male but have not changed their birth certificates. McCrory's office issued the following statement on the lawsuit on HB2. "The governor respects the right of any legal challenges; however, he does not respect the continued distortion of the facts by the groups challenging this law and by many members of the state and national media" said Graham Wilson, the gover nor's press secretary. 'To counter a coordinated national effort to mislead the public, intimidate our business community and slander our great state, the governor will continue to set the record straight on a common sense resolu tion to local government overreach that imposed new regulations on businesses that intruded into the personal lives of our citizens. The non-discrimination policies in place today in cities like Raleigh, Greensboro and Asheville and in every business in North Carolina are the same as they were last month and last year". Funding fiMiryutiAf $900j000. The city council in a split vote approved $825,500 for the Plaza in February 2015, which converted the remaining balance of the RUCA and U?>AG loans to $40^,000 in for givable loans. The rest of the money came from other sources like license fees for sweepstakes businesses. Robert Clark, Molly Leight and Jeff Macintosh voted against it, question ing if it was a good use of RUCA funds. The loans are forgivable in five years if the property is kept in good condition and complies with the terms in the loan agreement, which included donating approximately six acres of land behind the plaza to the City. City Council Member Derwin Montgomery said in a town hall last year he felt it was a good investment, since he considered it (me of the most successful RUCA projects based on the transformation of the property and the amount of private capital invest ed. Also during the meeting. City Council voted unanimously to reject all bids for the Winston Lake Park development project because the low est bidder failed to meet the goal for minority and women business enter prise subcontracting, which was 10% for minority-owned businesses and 10% for women-owned businesses, and was found by two committees to not have made the necessary good faith efforts to reach those goals. Montgomery assured his constituents th^City will continue to look for a contractor, and the project will move forward. The council delayed a vote on a multi-use bicycle and pedestrian path adjacent to Business 40 that would link places like Baptist Medical Center, BB&T Ballpark, downtown and Wake Forest Innovation Quarter, along with nearby neighbors and commercial areas. The $10 million path would be paid for with $S mil lion in city funds and a $5 million federal grant. The trail would go through four wards, but City Council members Robert Clark and D.D. Adams brought up questions of equi ty among the wards that weren't receiving funds for the project. The council also approved due diligence work to explore the possi bility of building a new County library next to the police district sta tion that is being built cm Waughtown Street. Parmon from page AI comes, social justice and income inequality, he said. Witherspoon said it was Parmon who encour aged him to run for office in 2010 and credited her with helping him win. He said he was just one of the next generation communi ty leaders she helped groom. "She was the type of person who mentored other people, she shared her knowledge," he said. The Chronicle (USPS 067-910) was established by Ernest H. Pitt and Ndubisi Egemonye in 1974 and is published every Thursday by Winston-Salem Chronicle Publishing Co. Inc., 617 N. Liberty Street, Winston-Salem, N.C. 27101. Periodicals postage paid at Winston-Salem, N.C. Annual subscription price is $30.72. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to: The Chronicle, P.O. Box 1636 Winston-Salem, NC 27102-1636 Ready from page Al "I like working with people, being around peo ple," she said. She would work at the Register of Deeds office for more than 27 years, work ing in almost every divi sion there. Her final job title was supervisor of vital records, a position that was phased out under Holleman in 2013. Holleman cut sev eral positions he said has saved taxpayers $2 mil lion. Johnson said she felt after serving under five dif ferent registers of deeds, she has the experience to hold the office, "I didn't look at it as a political office, I looked at it as a job that I felt I was very qualified to do," she said. "I know how that office needs to work, should work, at its most efficient." Johnson said she will put people first while pro tecting. their records, if elected. The Register of Deeds office keeps docu ments such as certificates of birth, death, marriage and real estate transactions. She currently works at the Forsyth County Clerk of Court office, and juggles work and running for office. She used vacation hours to meet and greet voters during early voting in front of the Forsyth County Government Center. She said her sup porters distributed many yard signs to get the word out about her candidacy. She'll face Republican Steve Wood of Pfafftown in the November General Election, a race she's confi dent she'll win. & :;>|w/|RDS ft

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