There’s an ongoing battle between Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and The Walt Disney Company. What started as a reaction to Disney’s opposition to the Florida Parental Rights in Education law (commonly called the “Don’t Say Gay” law by critics) turned into a larger fight to control the land that’s home to Disney World.
Recently, DeSantis outlined his plan of attack against Disney, which included a bill to nullify agreements between Disney and the Reedy Creek Improvement District (now renamed the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District). While we’ve heard a few comments from Disney CEO Bob Iger, Disney hasn’t directly responded to many criticisms regarding its connection to the Reedy Creek Improvement District — until now.
In a newly-discovered webpage on the Disney World website, Disney has laid out the value of Disney Reedy Creek to Florida with a series of questions and answers. The page includes questions like, “Does Disney pay taxes to the district?” and “Why was the special taxing district created in Orange and Osceola Counties?“
In a possible attempt to explain the impact that Ron DeSantis’s actions could have, Disney writes, “The district remains a cost-effective mechanism for ensuring that tax burdens for municipal services supporting Walt Disney World Resort do not fall on residents in Orange and Osceola Counties. These services include building and maintaining 134 miles of roadways and 67 miles of waterways and other infrastructure within the special taxing district.”
Around the same time that Disney shared this new information, CNBC reported that sources familiar with the Reedy Creek situation say Disney is preparing to take its fight with Governor Ron DeSantis to “the next level.”
After a press conference led by DeSantis on April 17th, a source close to the matter told CNBC that “Disney executives called on lobbyists to keep an eye on any Florida bills that could hurt the company and to start aggressively working against them.“
During that press conference on April 17th, DeSantis shared his plans to take action against The Walt Disney Company, including the idea to file legislation that would place Disney’s rides and attractions under inspection and oversight by the state’s Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services.
Click here to read more about what DeSantis had to say during the press conference
CNBC’s sources indicated that “Disney is pushing lobbyists to step up their efforts to influence the Republican-controlled state Legislature and to target land use-related bills that could hurt the company, among other measures.”
More specifically, CNBC reported that Disney lobbyists are watching the CS/SB 1604: Land Use and Development Regulations bill closely. We’ll continue to follow this ongoing situation, so stay tuned for updates.
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The post Disney Subtly Responds to Reedy Creek Criticisms from Gov. Ron DeSantis first appeared on the disney food blog.