If Disney wishes to play games with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, the governor will respond in kind.
During a press conference this week, now that the state owns the land on which Disney is located, the governor proposed constructing a state penitentiary close to the theme park.
“Come to think of it, what should we do with this land?” the Florida governor said. “Maybe create a state park. Maybe try to do more amusement parks. Someone even said, like, maybe you need another state prison. Who knows? I just think that the possibilities are endless.”
DeSantis openly speculating about what the state could build next to Walt Disney World:
“Someone even said, maybe you need another state prison…” pic.twitter.com/dlZ2r2OAqZ
— Scott Gustin (@ScottGustin) April 17, 2023
This month, DeSantis announced that he is planning new legislative and administrative actions against the Walt Disney Co. after the company secretly negotiated an agreement with an outgoing management board to retain control over the immense tracts of land surrounding its Orlando theme park.
“Come hell or high water, we’re going to make sure that policy of Florida carries the day. And so, they can keep trying to do things. But ultimately, we’re going to win on every single issue involving Disney, I can tell you that,” DeSantis said during a speech this week. “They are not superior to the people of Florida.”
DeSantis, along with the Republican-controlled legislature, is threatening to impose new tolls on highways leading to the park and additional taxes on Disney hotels.
“The Republican governor also vowed the state legislature, which his party controls, would undo Disney’s agreements with the oversight board it controlled before authority switched to a board DeSantis appointed,” the Daily Mail reported.
Disney had reached an agreement that gave it control over development for the next 30 years, but DeSantis administration officials are concerned that the contract violates the state’s growth laws. One of the laws, according to Politico, specifies that development agreements must be modified or revoked to conform to laws, even if the laws are enacted after the agreement has been made.
“Disney is refusing to stand down – saying all its actions were within Florida’s law – and DeSantis was left grasping when the last-minute deals the company cut came to light,” the Daily Mail noted further.
The Republican governor admitted that Disney used an obscure legal provision pertaining to King Charles III to thwart his takeover proposal, but he refuted claims that the theme park company intentionally misled him.
“They’re acting like somehow that they pulled one over on the state – there’ll be a lot of that coming out of the next month or two, but suffice it to say, you know, the legislature is going to void anything Disney did on the way out the door,” he noted.
The governor’s dispute with Disney began when the then-CEO of Disney, Bob Chapek, publicly opposed a legislative proposal — now a law — that prohibited K–3 schools from teaching about sexual orientation and gender identity. The measure was misnamed by critics as the “Don’t Say Gay” law. The Daily Mail reported that in response, “Florida lawmakers revoked the self-governance privileges that Disney World had held since 1967.”
“I can tell you is under no circumstances should the state of Florida be subsidizing woke activism by allowing them to have their own government, so we took it away,” DeSantis said during a stop in Michigan.
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“They tried to pull a fast one on the way out the door. They’ve been caught on that, so all I can say is that story’s not over yet, buckle up,” he noted further, adding: “There’s going to be more coming down the pike.” CONTINUE READING…