NEWS: Bill Impacting Disney’s Reedy Creek Agreements PASSES in Florida Senate

The ongoing case between The Walt Disney Company and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis was brought to national attention when Disney recently filed a lawsuit against Governor DeSantis (and members of the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District). The battle started when Disney released a statement against Florida’s Parental Rights in Education law (what critics call the “Don’t Say Gay” bill), and Governor Ron DeSantis responded by attacking Disney’s Reedy Creek Improvement District.

©Governor Ron DeSantis Website

For context, the Reedy Creek Improvement District (now referred to as the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District) is a special district in Osceola and Orange Counties created in 1967 by the Florida State Legislature. This special district was created to manage all municipal services for the land within and around the Walt Disney World Resort. The district was responsible for paying to provide the municipal services necessary to maintain the Walt Disney World Resort, including fire protection, water management, maintaining the roads, and power. Now, the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District has voted to take away some of Disney’s independent power. 

In the past, the Reedy Creek Improvement District gave Disney the ability to make its own decisions without outside government approval. After the DeSantis-appointed Central Florida Tourism Oversight District Board of Supervisors discovered the agreements Disney had made with the old Reedy Creek Improvement District Board, the new board of supervisors called for legal action against Disney.

©Governor Ron DeSantis Website

In March 2023, Senate Bill 1604: Land Use and Development Regulations was filed in the Florida Senate (there is a related bill in the Florida House of Representatives known as House Bill 439: Land Use and Development Regulations).

Magic Kingdom

Senate Bill 1604 describes plans to revise the planning periods included in a comprehensive plan, require local governments to determine if plan amendments are necessary, require local governments to evaluate and update comprehensive plans to reflect changes in location conditions, and more. In short, the bill aims to take away the Development Agreement between Disney World and the Reedy Creek Improvement District. This change would give the Florida government the ability to impose taxes and make land decisions relating to roadways and more.

Welcome to Florida

On April 26th, 2023, the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District Board declared Disney’s Development Agreement void, and later that same day, the Florida Senate passed Senate Bill 1604. From there, the bill will head to the Florida House.

Click here to read more about Senate Bill 1604

©Visit Florida

We will continue to look for updates on the battle between Ron DeSantis and The Walt Disney Company. Stay tuned for more.

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The post NEWS: Bill Impacting Disney’s Reedy Creek Agreements PASSES in Florida Senate first appeared on the disney food blog.


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