Members of the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District board — appointed by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) — voted Wednesday to void an agreement Disney made with a separate board that would give the company developmental authority over its theme park district.
The DeSantis-allied board met Wednesday to vote to void the agreement made between the Reedy Creek Improvement District and Disney in February that gave the company developmental authority over its theme park, according to WESH 2 News.
You are reading: DeSantis-picked board votes to claw back power over Disney district
That last-minute deal effectively undermined the governor’s efforts to impose greater state control over Disney World, which has long enjoyed special self-oversight powers over its theme park empire.
Readmore : WazirX received 828 requests from law enforcement agencies during April-September
Martin Garcia, chair of the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District board of supervisors, said in the meeting that Disney “picked the fight” with the board, the report said.
Lawyers for the board said at the meeting that the initial agreement was invalid because Reedy Creek did not have the authority to make decisions within the boundaries of Bay Lake and Lake Buena Vista Florida.
“We were not looking out for a fight. We had agreed to meet with the leadership of Disney to figure out how we could work together,” Garcia said.
Readmore : The Memo: How long will Tucker Carlson’s influence linger?
Shortly after the vote around noon, Disney filed a lawsuit suing Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) and other state officials for allegedly harming the company’s business operations.
Disney said in its complaint that the board’s move was void its agreement was the “latest strike” leading into the suit.
The lawsuit comes after months of Disney and DeSantis fighting over signed legislation that seemed to terminate Disney’s authority over the Reedy Creek Improvement District, which was self-governed by the company for decades.
“A targeted campaign of government retaliation—orchestrated at every step by Governor DeSantis as punishment for Disney’s protected speech—now threatens Disney’s business operations, jeopardizes its economic future in the region, and violates its constitutional rights,” the lawsuit states.