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San Francisco considers repealing law that boycotted conservative states over anti-LGBTQ, abortion legislation

The San Francisco Board of Supervisors could soon repeal all or parts of a 2016 law that prohibited city-funded travel and contracting with 30 conservative states.

The San Francisco Board of Supervisors could soon repeal all or parts of a law that prohibited city-funded travel and contracting with 30 conservative states that passed laws to restrict LGBTQ rights, abortion access and voting rights.

The 2016 ordinance, Chapter 12X, was initially passed in the wake of the Obergefell v. Hodges decision to include states that passed anti-LGBTQ legislation, but was amended twice in 2019 and 2021 to add additional states who passed restrictive abortion and voting rights legislation.

The move was largely seen as a boycott to pressure other states and prevent the city from engaging in business with those whose values it deemed antithetical to its own.

CALIFORNIA BANS STATE TRAVEL TO TEXAS, 3 OTHER STATES OVER ANTI-LGBTQ LAWS

A Feb. 10 report from City Administrator Carmen Chu’s office found the law has been costly and ineffective, with only one state being removed from the boycott list. 

"Since 12X became operative, the number of banned states has grown from 8 states in 2017 to 30 in 2022. This increase suggests that the City's threat of boycott may not serve as a compelling deterrent to states considering restrictive policies," read the report. 

It also found the contracting ban itself has raised San Francisco’s contracting costs by roughly 10-20% and could grow even higher if more states are added to the list. 

ALYSSA MILANO URGES HOLLYWOOD TO BOYCOTT GEORGIA OVER ‘HEARTBEAT’ ABORTION BILL 

The report proposed five alternatives, including repealing the ordinance entirely or repealing the contracting ban, but keeping the travel ban in place. 

Supervisor Ahsha Safaí introduced legislation at a Feb. 13 committee hearing to exempt construction contracts from the ordinance. Fellow Supervisor Rafael Mandelmanm told the San Francisco Chronicle he is planning on introducing legislation to repeal the ordinance entirely. 

"It’s an ineffective policy that complicates the business of San Francisco government and makes it very likely that we pay more than we should for goods and services," Mandelman said. 

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