Tag Archives: Reedy Creek

Governor Ron DeSantis Signs Legislation Ending the Corporate Kingdom of Walt Disney World

From the press office of Governor Ron DeSantis:

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Today, Governor Ron DeSantis signed House Bill (HB) 9-B, Reedy Creek Improvement District, Orange, and Osceola Counties, to end self-governing status and special privileges provided to Walt Disney World through the Reedy Creek Improvement District and establish a new state-controlled district accountable to the people of Florida. The bill provides legislative intent on the district’s authority to raise revenue and pay outstanding bonds and other obligations without interruption. More on HB 9-B can be found here.

“Allowing a corporation to control its own government is bad policy, especially when the corporation makes decisions that impact an entire region,” said Governor Ron DeSantis. “This legislation ends Disney’s self-governing status, makes Disney live under the same laws as everybody else, and ensures that Disney pays its debts and fair share of taxes.”

HB 9-B ends Disney’s self-governing status and imposes a five-member state control board that is appointed by the Governor and subject to Senate confirmation.

This legislation amends the Reedy Creek Improvement District charter which: 

  • ENDS Disney’s self-governing status.
  • ENDS Disney’s exemption from the Florida Building Code and Florida Fire Prevention Code.
  • ENDS Disney’s exemption from state regulatory reviews and approvals.
  • ENDS Disney’s secrecy by ensuring transparency. 
  • ENSURES that Disney will pay its fair share of taxes.
  • PREVENTS leftist local governments from using the situation to raise local taxes.
  • IMPOSES Florida law so that Disney is no longer given preferential treatment.
  • ENSURES that Disney’s municipal debt will be paid by Disney, not Florida taxpayers.

Governor Ron DeSantis Plan To End Disney’s “Corporate Kingdom”

Governor Ron DeSantis released his plan to transform Disney’s “Corporate Kingdom” aka Reedy Creek Improvement District on Monday. The Florida Legislature will take up the matter in an upcoming special session: Here is the statement from the Governor’s office:

In 1967, the Florida Legislature created the Reedy Creek Improvement District (the District), which gifted extraordinary special privileges to a single corporation. Until Governor DeSantis acted, the Walt Disney Company maintained sole control over the District. This power amounted to an unaccountable corporate kingdom.

Florida is dissolving the Corporate Kingdom and beginning a new era of accountability and transparency. The legislation:

Permanently eliminates Disney’s self-governing status.

Imposes a state-controlled, term-limited board – with members appointed by the governor – on Disney and its property.

Allows the state to impose taxes on Disney for possible road projects outside of the District’s boundaries.

Ensures that Disney pays the $700+ million in unsecured debt – not Florida taxpayers.

Provides no control of the district to the leftist local government in Orange County, which threatened to leverage the situation to raise local taxes.

Imposes Florida law so that Disney is no longer given preferential treatment.

Prevents Disney from gaining more land by eminent domain.

Creates an avenue to compel Disney to contribute to local infrastructure.

These actions ensure a state-controlled district accountable to the people instead of a corporate-controlled kingdom.

In contrast, some of the now-revoked powers that were formerly granted to the Walt Disney Company included:

Full self-governing status with a Disney-selected board.

The ability to build airports and nuclear facilities.

Acquisition of property beyond the District’s territory by condemnation and eminent domain.

Unilateral boundary changes.
No-bid procurements of construction contracts.

Operating standards that varied from Florida Statute.

Exemptions from regulatory reviews and approvals that other companies must navigate.