DeSantis targets Disney World’s Reedy Creek district in special session

Upping his war with the Walt Disney Co., Gov. Ron DeSantis said he is expanding the special session of the Legislature that started Tuesday to consider eliminating the Reedy Creek Improvement District that governs much of Walt Disney World.

He also said he would seek to eliminate the special carve out Disney received from the Legislature for the so-called Big Tech law that would allow people to sue social media companies such as Facebook or Twitter if they are censored. That law has been blocked by a federal judge.


“I am announcing today that we are expanding the call of what they are going to be considering this week,” DeSantis said in The Villages. “And so yes, they will be considering their 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.”

DeSantis thanked House Speaker Chris Sprowls and Senate President Wilton Simpson for “stepping up and making sure that we make the sunset or the termination on those special districts happen, which I think is very important.”


DeSantis’ announcement is a major escalation of his feud with Disney over the so-called “don’t say gay” bill, which Disney CEO Bob Chapek opposed after it was passed by the Legislature last month.

Chapek said the company was pausing its political contributions in the state and would work to oppose similar bills in other states.

DeSantis had previously only said he was “receptive” to changing the district, created by a 1967 state law that allowed Walt Disney World to establish its own independent government that handles fire safety and other functions.

DeSantis originally called the special session, which is scheduled to run through Friday if necessary, for the Legislature to review and approve a congressional map he submitted that eliminates a predominantly black Congressional District in North Florida, and creates four new Republican-friendly districts.

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