CORPUS CHRISTI (KIII NEWS) - Business leaders and state officials testified Friday in Austin about why the bathroom bills could mean losing billions of dollars in future business, and trouble for industries trying to recruit employees.
But, those bills if made into laws, may not hurt the Coastal Bend directly.
More than 250 registered to testify both for and against Senate Bills 3 and 91.
Those bills would regulate bathroom use for transgender Texans.
Proponents of the bills believe it would make school and public building restrooms safer by barring transgenders from using restrooms which contradict the sex on their birth certificates.
Paulette Kluge, the president of the Corpus Christi Convention and Visitors Bureau, was at the Capitol listening to the testimony.
She said a majority of those testifying felt the bills would mean a huge loss of convention business statewide.
"I would say 98 to 99 percent spoke against the bill. Opposed. Completely opposed the bill," Kluge said.
One study was shared said the state would immediately lose up to $5-billion in convention and tourism.
Alan Wilson, the chairman of the board of the United Corpus Christi Chamber of Commerce agreed and said the Coastal Bend would suffer.
"In the form of conferences, conventions, major sporting events and even the relocation of head quarters of other businesses could be impacted," Wilson said.
Though Kluge opposes the bill, she believes the Coastal Bend would be impacted much less because of where most of our visitors come from.
"92 percent of our business comes from the state of Texas, and for the people who lose their jobs will not be coming on vacation to Corpus Christi to see our beautiful beach," she said.
The Senate is considering the bills during the special legislative session.
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