Ahead of NCAA Tournament, Kansas City Official Voices Concern for State’s Anti-LGBT Bill
In an interview on Friday, Kansas City Manager Troy Schulte expressed concern over Senate Joint Resolution (SJR) 39, an extreme resolution that would lead to a ballot measure that, if approved by voters, would enshrine discrimination against LGBT people and their families into the state constitution.
“This (SJR 39) could set us back dramatically from efforts we've made over the last year to really ratchet up Kansas City as a sports destination,” he said in an interview with 610 Sports Radio.
Schulte referenced the backlash Indiana faced last year after Governor Pence signed the discriminatory Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) into law. The state lost over $60 million in revenue when Governor Pence and Indiana lawmakers passed the state’s RFRA, causing a national firestorm of businesses canceling major conferences and sporting events.
According to The Kansas City Star, Kansas City is set to host the Big 12 Tournament for the next four years and will bring in $13 million in revenue for the city.
“It could be devastating from an economic impact standpoint,” he said. “That’s a lot of jobs. That’s a lot of tourism. That’s a lot of people that are not from the city spending money in the city. And if those events go away because there’s a perception that Missouri and Kansas City are no longer welcoming for these types of events, it’ll have a dramatic economic impact on the city as a whole.”
Last week, Senate Republicans passed the resolution after the Senate Democrats led a historic filibuster effort to stop the anti-equality majority. SJR 39 now heads to the House of Representatives for consideration. If the House passes the resolution, it would go directly to the ballot and the governor would have no opportunity to veto it.