Disney Sidesteps DeSantis – Appeals to Florida Public In New Press Release

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Mickey Sneaking at Disney World

Credit: Disney

More Disney Florida Drama…

Reedy Creek on the left and Governor Ron DeSantis on the right
Credit: Inside the Magic

For over a year now, there’s been a slow-burning war between the Walt Disney Company, specifically, the Walt Disney World Resort, and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. Starting with Disney’s response to the “Don’t Say Gay” bill, it has escalated into a heated contestation over the Reedy Creek Improvement District/Central Florida Tourism Oversight District. With each side throwing more fuel onto the fire, Disney has now decided to bypass the state government.

Ron DeSantis and Reedy Creek
Images Credit: ABC News (left) and Reedy Creek Fire Department (right)

Related: As Plans For Florida Exit Come Forward, Classic Disney Attraction Goes Down

The idea for Reedy Creek, a Disney-sponsored community on the Walt Disney World Resort property, isn’t a new idea. In fact, as many diehard Disney fans know, the original vision that Walt Disney himself had for the “Florida Project” was a community, in fact, an Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow, or EPCOT.

Walt Disney Presents the Florida Project
Credit: D23

Sources close to Walt even said that his interest in a second gate, or Magic Kingdom, was secondary to planning this community. While Reedy Creek wouldn’t exactly be Walt’s EPCOT, it would be the fulfillment of that basic idea: building a better community for tomorrow. That may be the goal, but Ron DeSantis and the Florida Legislature are doing their best to ensure it doesn’t happen.

Governor DeSantis on the left and Cinderella Castle as a background
Credit: Inside the Magic

Since April of last year, both DeSantis and Disney have been exchanging fire in what many have deemed a petty battle. DeSantis and Florida lawmakers stripped Disney of their self-governing status, and the governor appointed a special board to oversee the Reedy Creek Improvement District, but Disney outmaneuvered the board, denying them many of the powers they thought they would inherit over the area with an interesting “King Charles III” clause.

This New Legislation Could Move Disney World to Another State
Credit: Inside The Magic

All in all, it’s been a mess, with both sides attacking each other ceaselessly, trying to gain the upper hand. Now, Disney has fired another volley, this time opting to appeal not to the Florida government but to its residents. In a new press release, the Walt Disney Company has made its case to Florida residents and voters as to why Reedy Creek, and by extension, the Walt Disney Company itself, benefits the state, and while it’s things many fans have known for years, it is a strong case.

EPCOT at Walt Disney World Resort
Credit: EPCOT

Among the assets listed are the utilities provided by Disney to Orange and Osceola Counties, including power, water, roads, and other municipalities that Disney World does provide. Disney also points out the significant taxes they pay to the state, over $1 billion, the significant benefit this provides to the residents nearby, and the work they’ve done with the local area and environment.

Disney's Animal Kingdom
Credit: Walt Disney World Resort

Related: Disney Park Isn’t Leaving Florida, But They Might Do This…

That’s not all, however. Disney also illustrates one of the most important pieces of their being in Florida. The release cites that Walt Disney World employs 75,000 Cast Members, making it the largest single-site employer in not just the state but the entire country. The destruction and expulsion of the Walt Disney Company from Florida would mean a significant loss for everyone involved and indicates that DeSantis doesn’t have the state’s best interests in mind but rather his own.

What do you think of this statement? Let Inside the Magic know in the comments below!

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