Governor Ron DeSantis Moves to Add Termination of Reedy Creek Improvement District to Legislative Special Session Discussion

Prior to the opening of Walt Disney World, in 1967, a state law allowed Disney to establish its own independent government that handles fire safety and other functions. That government is the Reedy Creek Improvement District. Reedy Creek has continued to govern the Resort ever since, but now Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is proposing a change.

What’s Happening:

  • According to the Orlando Sentinel, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has added the discussion of revoking Reedy Creek to a special session of the Legislature that started Tuesday.
  • Specifically, DeSantis is calling for termination to be considered for all special districts that were approved in the state before 1968. As noted, Reedy Creek was established in 1967.
  • This would exempt more recent special districts, including several operating in The Villages — the location for DeSantis’ speech.
  • 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.
  • This all comes as a response to Florida’s controversial “Don’t Say Gay” bill, which Disney publicly denounced and said their goal is for this law to be repealed by the legislature or struck down in the courts.

What They’re Saying:

  • Ron DeSantis said: “I am announcing today that we are expanding the call of what they are going to be considering this week. 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 of those special districts happen, which I think is very important.”