Disney’s future in Florida has been difficult to predict. Following Disney’s public critique of Florida’s Parental Rights Bill (otherwise known as the “Don’t Say Gay” bill), Florida Legislators pushed back with the proposal to dissolve Disney World’s Reedy Creek Improvement District.
The dissolution of Reedy Creek will remove expansive and operational freedoms for Disney, and risks placing the burden of municipal costs on local taxpayers. So, once Gov. Ron DeSantis signed the bill to dissolve Reedy Creek, many were left wondering what this would mean for the future of Disney World and its surrounding counties. Here’s what we know.
We’ve seen lawsuits arise regarding this particular legislation, based on the concern that taxpayers would be expected to cover the $1 billion of bond debt that’s being thrown into the mix with the dissolution. Gov. DeSantis previously mentioned that the state would most likely take control of Reedy Creek and taxpayers wouldn’t assume the debt, but no clear plan was provided.
According to Bloomberg, Ben Watkins, director of the state’s division of bond finance, said the likely outcome will be a successor district created by legislators. It will probably assume most of the powers Reedy Creek held that allow Disney to perform municipal functions. With that being said, it can be expected that previously-granted powers that were never used, such as operating a nuclear power plant, will not be authorized.
Watkins acknowledged that Gov. DeSantis’ office has been “supportive” of the successor district option, although, lawmakers have the final say in what happens. If the successor entity is allowed, that means the debt will be transferred to the entity.
We’ll continue to keep you updated on any movement regarding Reedy Creek. For more information on the background of this issue, check out Disney’s statement regarding Florida’s Parental Rights Bill. Or, take a look at the initial proposals to dissolve Reedy Creek.
And, as always, stay tuned to DFB for the latest Disney news.
Wonder how much of those bonds were for roads. Since roads on private property are the responsibility of the property owner.
I can get by without nuclear power, especially given the huge “solar farms” Disney has constructed on property, most of which are not accessible by guests. No idea how they are related to Reedy Creek.
Now this is a classic:
“ Gov. DeSantis previously mentioned that the state would most likely take control of Reedy Creek and taxpayers wouldn’t assume the debt, but no clear plan was provided.”
Ahhhh. Oh, so it’s the states money, huh. Not to worry taxpayers! LOL
I have a hard time believing this is to Disney’s benefit – that the local taxpayers will now actually be taking on all this Disney debt. If that were true, why didn’t Disney push for this years ago? Or at least a year ago. Instead, they got rid of Magical Express and raised prices on everything. Now, they have this big windfall of cancelled debt. Disney stock should be through the roof…but it’s not.
I crack up everything I read about the Reedy Creek district has the ability to build a nuclear power plant. Yes, that’s true of any district but folks, where and how do they obtain the permission to even build such a structure without the federal government? That also includes obtaining uranium (U-235) source. It is not something that is easy to obtain, transport and use.
I agree with Ann above. This childish move by DeSantis and his minionslooks like it only going benifit Disn in the end. All this because the litle man got his feelings hurt so he is thaving a tantrum.
Richard bowers says
Nuclear Power Plants were added early on before we all knew how power was evolving. But if no district as such ,state is final guarantor of bonds as they are on over 400 districts in state. Probably means as with Disneyland,slower growth and more new projects elsewhere. Will be interesting to see how Disney responds.
Long term Disney would prefer to keep the control they had with Reedy Creek. Losing that control won’t necessarily hurt them financially, it will just force them to jump through more hoops to get things done. Minor costs. But short term this will be a huge financial gain for Disney and a burden for Florida taxpayers. And this because a child who claims to believe in free speech threw a tantrum when he didn’t like what Disney execs said. All the while his mindless minions continue to follow.