During his monthly press conference, Gov. Spencer Cox said the false reports about breaking the bathroom law are harmful and he supports the intent of the law.

The law designates bathrooms, changing rooms and locker rooms in government owned buildings and public schools by biological sex. It does not apply to privately owned buildings. It also tasks the state auditor with establishing a way of investigating alleged violations of the law.

State Auditor John “Frugal” Dougall said in a statement dated May 7 that the office created the form to comply with the law, but didn’t request the job.

“We act only in response to allegations and will not initiate any investigation at random,” said Dougall. “Further, we will not investigate the actions of any private individuals, nor will we investigate or determine anyone’s sex or gender. We are not required — and have no desire — to intrude on the most intimate aspects of a person’s life.”

In addition to issuing the statement, Dougall has posted a couple videos on social media. He said he cares about women’s safety in bathrooms, but the piece of the law that dealt with bathrooms was “more about show than substance.”

Cox said with any bill, there’s a time for learning what can be made better.

“I think the important thing it that we’re protecting women and women’s spaces,” said Cox. “That was always the intent of the bill and would be the intent of any, if there are, changes going forward.”

Cox called the reporting structure “misaligned” while emphasizing that he believes the underlying bulk of the law is sound. He said it wasn’t helpful to submit false reports and encouraged people not to do so.

When a reporter asked if he agreed with the characterization of the law as “drumming up a culture war sideshow,” Cox said he disagreed.

“I think there are people who are not part of maybe what he would refer to as MAGA or the culture wars who have legitimate concerns,” said Cox. “And I think it’s important to hear those concerns as well.”

While Cox said he does “lament the direction the culture wars have gone,” he said it was important to protect women’s spaces.