DeSantis Signs Bill to Take Over Disney District

    DeSantis Signs Bill to Take Over Disney District
    Last updated Feb 27, 2023
    Image credit: Anadolu Agency/Getty Images [via Axios]


    • Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on Monday signed a bill requiring him to appoint a five-member board to oversee the government services for the Reedy Creek Improvement District, which was previously controlled by entities of the Walt Disney World company.
    • The bill will turn governing power over the 2K acre district, to be renamed the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District, to the governor-appointed board, thereby creating a new state-controlled tax district. These powers include the ability to build a nuclear power plant and airport, though Disney never used them.
    • The new board will have powers such as "exclusive jurisdiction and control" over infrastructure services, what gets constructed or demolished, building regulations, hiring people who work for the district, imposing taxes, and entering into deals with private contractors.
    • During the signing ceremony at the Reedy Creek fire station in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., DeSantis said, "Today, the corporate kingdom finally comes to an end," adding "there’s a new sheriff in town and accountability will be the order of the day."
    • Where it previously held near autonomous authority, Disney will now have to comply with all state regulations within the district. The bill will also leave the district’s debt obligations and other financial structures intact, with DeSantis saying it will impose no additional tax burden on Floridians.
    • This follows almost a year of conflict between DeSantis and Disney, beginning with the company's opposition to the Parental Rights in Education Law, which was dubbed the "Don't Say Gay" bill by critics. Disney says it will work within the new legislative framework.


    Republican narrative

    Instead of caving to the woke mob, Disney CEO Bob Chapek should have taken DeSantis’ advice and let the controversy over the parenting bill blow over. Instead, Disney reacted to left-wing online trolls by defying Florida law, leaving the state little choice but to adopt this bill.

    Democratic narrative

    DeSantis is exploiting yet another culture war issue to increase his notoriety ahead of his eventual 2024 presidential campaign, and this time the state’s taxpayers will be footing the bill. While he mostly lied about what this bill will do, DeSantis sold out his citizens to gain control of a board and score political points nationally.

    Political split



    More neutral political stance articles

    Sign up to our newsletter!