North Carolina GOP Governor Spent Nearly $700,000 on Private Attorneys to Defend Anti-LGBT Law HB2


'A Financial Windfall' for Lawyers

Whether they like it or not North Carolina taxpayers footed the bills of at least three private law firms which collectively charged the State nearly $700,000 to defend Tar Heel State Republicans' anti-LGBT and unconstitutional law, HB2

Calling the law "a financial windfall" for lawyers, Buzzfeed News' Dominic Holden reports "the state paid $690,151 for three private law firms to handle litigation over the law." 

The governor's office and Department of Public Safety paid a combined $278,376 to Millberg Gordon Stewart PLLC, a firm based in the state capital of Raleigh, according to the state's records.

The firm McGlinchey Stafford-DPS got another $178,819, the state's records show, while Bowers Law Office-DPS was paid $232,956 for its services.

These payments are not the sum total, they represent only work commissioned by the Governor's Office, which was held by Pat McCrory at the time.

"The records do not cover additional litigation costs for the state over HB2 by other state branches; the University of North Carolina and the leaders of the state legislature, Sen. Phil Berger and Speaker Tim Moore, paid other law firms for help," Holden reports.

In March, Democratic Governor Roy Cooper, who beat McCrory in the November election, signed a highly-controversial law that purportedly repealed HB2. In fact, there are still many components of the discriminatory law that remain, including a ban on cities, towns, and other localities from enacting, among other ordinances, nondiscrimination protections, and minimum wage and employment laws.

Days earlier, an Associated Press analysis found HB2 would cost the state more than $3.76 billion over 12 years. By the end of this year, the AP study said the Tar Heel State will have lost "more than $525 million" due to HB2.

Today the NBA announced the 2019 All-Star game will be played in Charlotte, thanks to the so-called "repeal" of HB2. 

Earlier this month Governor Cooper said he would be signing an executive order protecting LGBT people "pretty soon."

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Image by Mark Farris via Flickr and a CC license

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