After the Florida House State Affairs Committee approved the bill that would overhaul the Reedy Creek Improvement District yesterday, the Florida House of Representatives have now passed the bill.
- The bill that would put control of Walt Disney World’s governing body into the hands of the Florida government overwhelmingly passed the Florida House with a vote of 81-31.
- It now moves on to the Florida Senate, where a vote is expected tomorrow.
- The bill will change how the district’s landowners elect board members as Disney would previously handpick the board members of Reedy Creek as they were the primary landowners.
- Now, if the bill passes as is, the governor will appoint those members, subject to confirmation by the Florida Senate.
- An amendment was proposed that would have expanded the board to seven, but also include local leaders, and change the way other members were appointed. The amendment was ultimately shut down via a voice vote.
- The new bill would also rename Reedy Creek as the “Central Florida Tourism Oversight District.”
- Bill sponsor Rep. Fred Hawkins of St. Cloud noted that “all that visit the park, nothing has changed; day to day it will be the same.”
- Outstanding debt, contracts, and tax collection would not be affected, according to the bill, and would not be transferred to local taxpayers as was originally feared by some familiar with the matter.
- This special session is the culmination after a very public feud with the Walt Disney Company and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, which he called a “Woke” corporation, after the company opposed the controversial bill DeSantis approved, commonly referred to by opponents as the “Don’t Say Gay” bill.
- We talked more about the proposed changes to Reedy Creek in an LPTV News Update yesterday: