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DeSantis Signs Bill That Retroactively Voids Disney’s Power Grab

After a debate over whether lawmakers should intercede in DeSantis’ fight against Disney, agreements made by the entertainment behemoth are now legally considered null and void.

TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA — Today, Governor Ron DeSantis signed a Land Use and Development Regulations measure in a general bill (SB 1604) that retroactively nullifies the “unlawful” agreements Disney pushed through in a February 8 land-use agreement.

The bill, sponsored by Sen. Blaise Ingoglia (R-Spring Hill), sparked a debate between Republicans who back the governor and Democrats who felt it was “inappropriate” for legislators to get involved in DeSantis’ fight against Disney.

“We are going to respond swiftly and protect what we are doing as a legislature and protect future boards so they are able to do their job,” Ingoglia said when he introduced the amendments to the general bill.

Republican Representative Toby Overdorf (R-Palm City) explained that lawmakers indeed have a duty to address the issue because Disney did not “outsmart” the governor but broke the law.

The amendment reads:

An independent special district is precluded from complying with the terms of any development agreement, and any other agreement for which the development agreement serves in whole or part as consideration, executed within 3 months preceding the effective date of a law modifying the manner of selecting members of the governing body of the independent special district from election to appointment or from appointment to election. The newly elected or appointed governing body of the independent special district shall review within 4 months of taking office any development agreement and any other agreement for which the development agreement serves in whole or part as consideration and, after such review, shall vote on whether to seek readoption of such agreement. This subsection shall apply to any development agreement that is in effect on, or is executed after, the effective date of this section. This subsection expires July 1, 2028, unless reviewed and saved from repeal through reenactment by the Legislature.