Florida votes to strip Disney of privileged tax and self governing status

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The Republican-led Senate voted to end the Reedy Creek Improvement District
It means the firm will no longer be able operate as a self-contained government
It rips up the 55-year-old deal that allowed Disney to effectively self-govern itself
But it may see two Florida counties saddled with $1billion of debt owed by Disney
It is the latest escalation in the ongoing battle between Ron DeSantis and Disney
It started when its bosses opposed the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill and enraged governor

“O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the LORD our maker.”  Psalms 95:6 (KJV) 

Florida lawmakers have voted to strip Disney of its special status as a self-governing area as the war between Governor Ron DeSantis and the company rumbled on.

The Republican-led Senate decided to end the Reedy Creek Improvement District, meaning the firm will no longer be able operate as a self-contained government.

They backed the measure by 23-16 and it will go to the state House before being passed to the governor – with it potentially coming into effect on June 1, 2023.

It rips up the 55-year-old deal that allowed Disney to regulate land, enforce building codes and treat wastewater – and could cost the company millions in lost local taxes.

But it could also see two Florida counties saddled with $1billion of debt currently owed by Walt Disney World.

Orange and Osceola counties may end up shouldering the huge sum amid the toxic fallout between DeSantis and the firm over the Parental Rights in Education bill.

It comes amid claims Disney could turn to former CEO Bob Iger to steady the ship, which has become increasingly turbulent under Bob Chapek.

Today’s update is the latest escalation in the ongoing war between DeSantis and Disney – which started when its bosses opposed the so-called ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill and enraged the governor for weighing into politics.

The firm has come out strongly against the document, which forbids discussing homosexuality or transgender issues for children from kindergarten to third grade.

DailyMail.com has approached Disney for comment on the changes and it is not clear if they will launch an appeal.

Democrats failed to delay the passage of the GOP-sponsored bill yesterday that sought to dissolve six special districts in Florida.

Those districts included the Reedy Creek Improvement District, in which Walt Disney World in Orlando sits.

DeSantis said at a press conference: ‘Yes, they will be considering the congressional map, but they also will be considering termination of all special districts that were enacted in Florida prior to 1968 – and that includes the Reedy Creek Improvement District.’

The Reedy Creek Improvement District, a semi-private, special-purpose government, is controlled by Disney and spans 39 square miles.

It was created in 1967 when the then-Florida Republican Governor Claude Kirk signed into law the Reedy Creek Improvement Act.

If the 1967 is repealed by GOP lawmakers, Disney World’s property will fall under the control of Orange and Osceola counties.

DeSantis had only previously hinted he was ‘receptive’ to changing the district, before making the ann…

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